Cooking has been a hobby of mine since I was very young. I was the oldest of four boys and our parents would have meetings and leave a large pan of Spanish Rice in the cast iron skillet for supper so we needed to get creative or live off tomato soup in rice for a long time! Camp cooking started early in Cub Scouts and then into Boy Scouts with campfire treasures like smore’s and cherry pie from a box renamed “cobbler” and stuffed in tin foil buried under the coals.
Throughout the years I’ve been blessed with many out-of-this-world camping adventures including a Thanksgiving spent in Mount McKinley (Denali) National Park with a gourmet meal of Campbell’s Turkey Noodle Soup cooked on a single stove. When the topic of camping recipes was given for this blog I thought about the various fun recipes, gourmet campfire experiences, and great meals we prepared along they way.
This is one of the most universal meals we have ever cooked as some of our guests are vegan, some meat eaters and others don’t like onions. Kabobs make it easy for everyone to make there own. Here are some of our favorite ingredients:
- Sirloin cubes
- Chicken breast cut into bite size pieces
- Red/Yellow/White onions cut into wedges
- Red/Yellow/Orange/Green Peppers cut into squares
- Miniature peppers that are the size of jalapenos and use them whole
- Corn -sweet corn cut into 2” lengths
- Pineapple chunks
- Zucchini chunks
- Baby potatoes
- Garlic cloves
You get the idea, just about anything someone would like can be put on a skewer and cooked. If everyone likes the same things, you can put all the meat on one skewer, veggies on another and cook them to the desired finish, however we cut all the ingredients up before leaving and put them into storage bags. Each camper then gets to customize their own skewer and regulate the cooking time. The ingredients can be enhanced with olive oil garlic and various salts/herbs. We like to marinate all the ingredients in Italian Dressing in a bag for 1 hour before assembling. Wooden skewers should be soaked in water for at least 30 minutes to keep them from burning. Place the customized skewer on the grill and cook for the desired time. Grilling time varies with the ingredients, however 12 minutes is a good rule of thumb for medium meat. You can experiment with different marinades like teriyaki sauce with balsamic vinegar and garlic, lemon juice with white wine for fish, and others.
Whether you cook on a grill, oven, or campfire, there is no end to the types of meals you can create wrapped up in tin foil. The easy to make cobbler, breakfast sandwiches, or just veggies thrown together. These are often referred to as “Hobo Meals” as early traveling nomads seldom carried cooking utensils. Here is one of my favorites:
Everything Hash Browns
- Hash browns, or cut up potatoes
- Red, yellow, green peppers cut in squares
- Sausage (you can substitute your favorite meat)
- Red onion sliced and cut in strips
- Butter – 2 T
- Olive Oil 2 T
- Non stick spray
- Cheese to please! Pick your favorite and the amount you want. I use a little shredded sharp cheddar and a little shredded pepper jack. Get creative, Havarti and other exotics are fun too!
Notice there is no reference to how many cups of potatoes and other veggies as it depends on how much you want to make and how much you like onions! Typically one cup of potatoes, ½ cup of veggies and ½ cup of sausage is enough for one medium serving.
- Lay out a sheet of tin foil twice the size of the mixture and spray with a non-stick cooking spray.
- Add the ingredients
- Slather on some olive oil and garlic if preferred
- You can also add eggs to the mix if desired.
- Sprinkle or cover with cheese.
- Cover and cook for 12-15 minutes depending on how soft or al dente you want your potatoes and veggies.
Granted coffee pods are very convenient at home, especially if you have a family with different preferences in coffee tastes, but they are not very practical for camping and can be expensive! We have experimented over the past few years and our favorite was a pot of coffee brewed in an old fashioned glass percolator on a campfire. Unfortunately, that broke on a bumpy road during a winter trip when I forgot it wasn’t protected in the compartment. Since then, I have found a much more primitive form of a pod using a small sized coffee filter with a scoop of coffee tied up with dental floss! Start a cup of water boiling on a campfire or grill and drop the “boondocker’s pod” into the water for at least one minute and adjust the cooking time to your desire strength. Maybe we can come up with a cool name for this and be the next one hit wonder?
Omelets are a staple for camping and a cast iron skillet is the perfect pan to make any type of omelet or even frittata. One secret I learned a few years ago is to whisk the egg or eggs in a bowl with a fork prior to pouring them into the pan. Do this without any milk or cream and the air infused into the egg will create a fluffy yellow omelet that will amaze you! I know, I didn’t believe it myself as I was a diehard milk believer. Once you have the base, you can add anything from ham to shrimp and even salmon. We often had several ingredients individually prepackaged and spread out an omelet bar so everyone could make their own with individual small cast iron pans.
Tacos and fajitas are easy to make in a cast iron skillet as well. Here is my favorite:
- 1 lb. chicken breast strips
- 1 packet fajita/taco seasoning
- 2 cups red, yellow, green peppers cut into 2-3” strips
- 1/2 cup red onion cut into 2” strips
- 3 T. olive oil 3 tbs
- 1 T garlic chopped
- Lemon juice
- Franks Hot Sauce
- Fajita/taco toppings
- Sour Cream
- Lettuce chopped
- Green onions chopped
- Add olive oil to the skillet on the fire and brown the chicken strips first
- Add in fajita/taco seasoning
- Brown the chicken for about 5 minutes and then add the veggies
- Cook for another couple of minutes or until veggies get to the crisp or soft as you like
- Heat the tortillas on a skillet or flat pan
- Add chicken fajita ingredients and toppings as desired
- This also can be set up as a fajita station and guests can customize their own fajita.
And finally, a couple of fun recipes that will have everyone talking about the trip for years.
Scrambled Eggs In a Bag
This one came from my assistant who camps in a 5th wheel almost every weekend also attends Hobo Days every year. The grandkids love this she says!
- 2 Eggs
- 1/2 c. Ham or sausage cut into chunks
- 1/2 c. Red peppers, green peppers, onions cut into chunks
- 1 qt freezer bag
- Place two eggs in a freezer bag and squeeze out all the air possible and close the bag
- Squeeze and shake the bag to mix the eggs
- Add the ingredients you desire and close the bag
- Bring a pot of water to a boil and place the bag into the pot
- Cook for 10-12 minutes and remove from the heat
- Open the bag and the omelet should roll right out
Eclair On A Stick
This is one of my granddaughters favorite and it really makes the neighboring campers look!
- Croissant dough
- Cherry pie filling, chocolate pie filling, blueberry pie filling – your choice
- Broom stick
- Non-stick spray
- Use a clean broomstick without paint or a wooden dowel long enough to use as a roasting stick
- Spray it with non-stick cooking spray and wrap the croissant dough around the end
- Roast over an open flame until the dough is toasty and crisp
- Slide off the stick and add filling as desired
- You can also add whipped cream to the top
- Enjoy! It’s fun seeing the neighbors watching what you are doing with a broom stick!
About the Author: Dave Solberg: Managing Editor, RV Repair Club
For the last 25 years, Dave has conducted RV maintenance and safety seminars, developed dealer and owner training programs, written RV safety and handyman articles, authored an RV handbook reference guide and logged over 100,000 miles on the road in an RV.
RV Repair Club is your go-to online resource for enthusiasts who want quality RV maintenance, repair, and upgrade information – a community where passionate RVers can come together to gather knowledge and share their experiences.
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