When camping, it is important to take plenty of food and water to remain nourished. These items should be easy to store, easy to carry when out on the trail, and easy to keep fresh. Non-perishable and dried items are best to take, but perishable items can be used if you have access to a refrigerator or cooler that will maintain the cold for the duration of your trip.
There are specialty stores that carry food supplies specifically meant for camping. However, these items can be expensive. They usually consist of pre-packaged food and meals that are freeze-dried. Often the food is bland and may not be as nutritious as a fresh meal.
With a little planning, however, it is possible to have nutritious, easy to prepare meals right from the grocery store. There are many foods that are lightweight, easy to store, and non-perishable. Cereals, nuts, dried fruit, and candy are great snacks and can be mixed for an energy-boosting trail mix. All those ingredients are readily available in a grocery store and can be made up before leaving and stored in an airtight container. Adding some packets into your backpack will provide a healthy snack while on the trail.
Always bring plenty of water for hydration and cooking. Don’t forget you’ll also need water for cleaning dishes after cooking. You can also bring drink mixes and coffee or tea to mix with the water for a pick me up in the morning. Any foods that require simply adding water are great. Cup of soup packets where you just add some water and let it steep are great for a quick and easy warm meal or snack. They are great for cold weather to help keep warm.
Canned meats, meats that do not require refrigeration and canned vegetables are a good source of nutrition. Tuna fish and canned chicken can be used in numerous recipes. Making stews out of canned meats and canned vegetables will provide you a hearty meal that is easy to prepare and easy to clean. Salami does not need to be cooked and is great on crackers for a snack. Beef jerky is a traditional camping snack that will provide nutrition and boost energy while on the trail. Just remember though that if you take any canned goods to also bring a can opener.
For sweets, candy and dried fruits are excellent. But who can resist a traditional smores? Marshmallows, chocolate bars, and graham crackers are lightweight and can be carried and stored with ease. Sitting down to a fire while roasting marshmallows and melting chocolate onto the graham cracker is a fun way to satisfy the sweet tooth.
Remember that when you are camping you will need to carry items with you on hikes and nature walks. Choose items that are lightweight and do not require a lot of cleaning. Bring a variety of meats, cheeses, breads, snacks, and sweets. Camping is a temporary state, and you should concentrate on ease of preparation and fun. Do not worry that you may not be getting the most balanced meal or gourmet food. There’s plenty of time for that at home. Enjoy the campfire, keep your energy level up, and have fun.