Camping meal planning with doesn't need to feel overwhelming. Look no further than vegetables!
Vegetables are delicious, nutritious, and restorative. While they may be bulkier than some other popular camping foods (I’m looking at you, hot dogs!), it’s worth figuring out how to pack them into your wilderness adventures.
My strategy is to plan two meals at a time, with two considerations in mind:
Lunch – cheese/salami, nuts, apples, hummus (store-bought or try our homemade white bean cilantro hummus), crackers, and sliced or whole raw vegetables (a.k.a. crudité). The key here is the raw vegetables. Prepare them at home – broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, bell peppers, snap peas, and mushrooms are all great options. Depending on their ages/abilities, kids can help wash, peel, and/or chop. Just be sure to make twice as much as you plan to eat for lunch because you’ll need the other half for dinner.
Dinner – start by peeling and chopping an onion and a clove or two of garlic. Add them to a large skillet with a little cooking oil. Cut the remaining vegetables from earlier into smaller pieces and – voilà! – you’ve now got a solid foundation for a veggie stir fry. Add the veggies to the skillet, keeping in mind that cooking times vary (broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots, for example, take longer to cook than celery, peppers, snap peas, and mushrooms). Finally, add your favorite sauce packet or seasonings, cook for 15-20 minutes, and serve over a pre-cooked grain like rice or quinoa.
Lunch – pack up whatever sandwiches your crew prefers (we’ll be having muffulettas!) and keep it cool with bags of frozen vegetables instead of ice packs. Why? You get to skip the washing and chopping, plus once your “ice packs” have served their purpose, you can put them to use in the next meal: dinner.
Dinner – again, start by peeling and chopping an onion and a clove or two of garlic. Add these to a large skillet with a little cooking oil. Add the (now thawed) frozen vegetable “ice packs” of your choice – peas, green beans, mixed vegetables, broccoli, and kale all work well – and serve over pre-cooked pasta. Or do you prefer to follow a recipe? Try our magical one-pot pasta or our chocolate chill skillet recipes. Again, these are one-pot meals, so you’re saving time on prep AND cleanup!
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