Think a fancy RV kitchen is necessary to eat well while camping? As long as there's a campfire, there's no need to rough it when it comes to food. In honor of Great Outdoors Month, here are 20 camping meals featuring inexpensive ingredients that are a cinch to make, leaving plenty of money and time to enjoy a trip.
20 Cheap Campfire-Friendly Meals
Keep things simple in the great outdoors with these make-ahead breakfast burritos. Eggs, cheese, ham, hash browns, and some seasoning make for a hearty start to the day. Just cook up the filling before you leave, roll each burrito, and cover in foil. Pop them in the cooler until it's time to warm them over fire. Recipe: Taste and Tell
If there's a little more time (and a little more room in the cooler) it doesn't get much more delicious. A mix of milk, cream, eggs, syrup, and vanilla can transform a store-bought loaf of cinnamon bread, with an assist from some blueberries and aluminum foil. Recipe: Taste and Tell
Apples, oats, almonds, maple syrup, cinnamon -- here's a simple recipe that requires minimal time over the fire and uses no ingredients that need to be kept cool. It's infinitely adaptable, so fans of peaches or people who prefer nutmeg, for instance, can make substitutions. Recipe: Faring Well
Cornbread is quick, easy, and filling -- the hallmarks of good camping food. The only ingredients to keep cool are the milk (though powdered milk will do) and an egg. A good cast-iron skillet with a lid is recommended for even cooking, but foil can stand in for the lid in a pinch. Recipe: Fresh Off the Grid
Grilled corn on the cob is a treat any time of year, and can be a side dish or the star of the show. There needs to be a little cooler space for mayo and sour cream, but the other ingredients (corn, cilantro, parmesan, lime juice and chili powder) require little fuss. Recipe: Saving Money Camping
Peppers are a great vehicle for a lot of tasty fillings -- in this case, camping-friendly favorites such as olives, sun-dried tomatoes, pesto, pre-made rice, and Parmesan. Prep is super easy: The ingredients combine in one bowl and are stuffed inside peppers to be grilled over the fire. Recipe: Feeling Peckish
Load up a pie iron with bread, mozzarella, tomato, and fresh or dried basil, then grill the sandwich over the fire until it's nice and gooey. Be sure to use a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Recipe: Tin Pig
These hot dogs are a kid-friendly favorite that require just two inexpensive ingredients: a pack of hot dogs and a tube of crescent roll dough. Wrap the dogs in the dough, skewer them, and cover with foil -- after that, they just need 15 to 20 minutes over the fire. Recipe: Frugal Coupon Living
With a Dutch oven or a large iron skillet with a lid, pizza is more than fair game for a filling campfire meal -- just spread some dough on the bottom and go to town. Store-bought dough and canned toppings such as mushrooms, olives, and sauce keep things cheap and easy. Recipe: Instructables
Most of this all-American classic can be prepped at home, mixing pre-cooked chicken, cream of chicken soup, veggies, and chicken bullion in a zip-top bag. Keep the bag in a cooler until mealtime, and don't forget to toss in a can of crescent rolls to line the pie iron and form the crust of this filling staple. Recipe: 50 Campfires
While a traditional paella often uses shrimp, less-pricey proteins such as chicken and sausage are easy to sub in. To make paella truly campfire-friendly, prep the veggies before leaving and cook everything over the fire in a foil bowl. This one takes up to an hour to cook, but good things come to those who wait. Recipe: Zestuous
Use onions as makeshift bowls to make messy meatloaf more campfire-friendly. Cooler space is needed for ground beef and an egg, which get tossed with cracker crumbs, tomato sauce, salt, pepper, and dry mustard in a zip-top bag. The balled-up mix cooks between onion halves over the fire. Recipe: KOA
Cook onions and peppers before heading out to make this camping-friendly cheesesteak a cinch. After that, it's just a matter of stuffing some French bread with the veggies, roast beef and cheese, slapping on some garlic butter, and warming it over fire. Recipe: Twin Dragonfly Designs
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