Camping Food Ideas (Breakfast, Main Course, and Desserts)

Are you struggling with meal ideas that will keep you satisfied while on the trail or campsite? Finding meals you can make over a camping stove or an open fire can be challenging, and people often grow tired of repeatedly making the same old meals. You need a comprehensive list of food items to make your camping trip memorable and, even more importantly, enjoyable.

Camping food ideas start with breakfasts like egg sandwiches, oatmeal, French toast, or parfaits. You can make main dishes from foil packets with chicken, sausage, veggies, or potatoes. Side dishes like asparagus and corn are crowd-pleasers. Don’t forget dessert with mountain pies or bananas.

If you need some help with your grocery list, these ideas will jumpstart your culinary creativity.

Best Meals for Camping

Preparing for your camping trip is half the battle, which often means you must plan a grocery trip before heading into the great outdoors.

Cooking over an open fire can sound like a lot of fun, but it’s challenging without prep work.

If you’ve wondered what the best meals are for your next camping trip, you’ll want to consult this guide for creative ideas.


These hearty breakfast options will get your day started right.

1. Egg Sandwiches

Nothing is easier on a cold camping morning than frying an egg. Butter up some toast, fry your egg and load up on frozen sausage patties.

Toss the entire sandwich in a mountain pie or cook it directly over the camping stove to get everything crisp and warm.

It should take less than 10 minutes to get a hearty breakfast and a great start to your day.

You can check out my article on the best camping stoves for some camping stoves suggestions to help you pick the right one.

Egg Sandwiches

2. Oatmeal

Especially if you’re camping in the winter weather, you’ll want to know how to make the best hot oatmeal. All you have to do is purchase some ready-to-eat oats and mix them with hot water or milk.

Top them with your favorite goodies, including fruit, nuts, brown sugar, maple syrup, or even peanut butter.

3. French Toast

Another hearty breakfast idea is equally easy: French toast. Take a loaf of bread and soak it in egg batter.

Wrap it in foil and sprinkle with your desired toppings like powdered sugar, cinnamon, brown sugar, or whatever you have around the campsite.

Allow it to cook over the campfire until the egg is done, the bread is crispy, and you’re ready to slather on the maple syrup. Add fresh fruit for a healthy topping.

4. Parfaits

Maybe you prefer not to heat the campfire first thing in the morning. On a hot summer day, this might feel a bit unbearable.

The good news is that you can still enjoy a solid breakfast even if you don’t want to cook.

Pack individual servings of plain or vanilla yogurt, store-bought or homemade granola, fresh fruit slices, nuts, and more.

Make a little bar of options so every camper can customize their parfait.

5. Trail Mix

Maybe standing over the campfire to cook your meal isn’t your idea of a good time. In this case, you can mix up a batch of trail mix before leaving for your trip.

Mix in your favorite nuts, candies, seeds, dried fruits, and crunchy toppings. Honey can sweeten it, while sriracha gives it a little bit of a kick.

Trail Mix

Main Dishes

Get a hearty meal while camping with some creative twists on grilled favorites. Learn more and start planning your grocery trip here.

1. Nachos

If you want something quick and easy that’ll please a crowd. You can’t go wrong with nachos. You have a few different options for how to do this.

If you’re looking for a recipe with ground beef, you can make your meat over the campfire. Load it into individual bags of nacho chips and add toppings.

This is what is commonly known as a “walking taco.” On the other hand, you could do a meat-free version that’s even easier.

Simply take a Dutch oven, layer your chips on the bottom, top with cheese, beans, and other accouterments, and let it all melt on the campfire.

Scoop it out onto plates or bowls, and you have a quick and easy meal.

2. Foil Packets

Skip doing the dishes at the end of the night and load your food into foil packets for cooking. Get creative with the types of food that you put in here.

Try sausage and potatoes, add a few shrimp, or cook up Hawaiian chicken with pineapples and onion.

It doesn’t matter what you want to eat for dinner; it can always go into a foil packet. From here, you just place your foil packets over the campfire and have hot and ready food in no time.

3. Grilled Sandwiches

A pie iron can be great for making melty-grilled sandwiches, even if you don’t have a sweet tooth. Load them with your favorite toppings, clamp the iron shut, and put it in the fire.

This allows you to get as creative as you want. Try a fancy grilled cheese, hot ham, and cheese, or a spicy Italian.

Whatever you have in your cooler can easily be made into one of these hot and ready-to-eat sandwiches. These grilled sandwiches go really well with tea, coffee, or any other hot beverage.

If you love your coffee, you can check out my article on making coffee while camping for some tips on brewing the perfect cup.

4. Baked Potatoes

Another easy way to get a hearty meal is to cook potatoes over the campfire. Simply poke holes in your potato with a fork, wrap it in foil, and place it in the campfire.

It should take roughly a half hour for them to cook. Then, you can top them with sour cream, chili, barbecue chicken, or any other topping your heart desires.

This also applies to sweet potatoes if you don’t love traditional russet potatoes.

Sweet potatoes can be loaded with breakfast fixings, such as eggs, avocado, crumbled sausage, and even slices of fresh tomato.

Baked Potatoes

5. Sausage and Peppers

A package of bratwurst or Italian sausages can make a simple meal feel even more elegant. When it comes to cooking these, you have a couple of options.

They can go in a skillet over the campfire, or you can cook them in foil packets.

If you make them on the campfire or over a camping stove, you’ll want to slice up some peppers and onions for the late-stage cooking simmered with some of your favorite beer.

For those who prefer hands-off cooking, you can pack your sausage, peppers, and onions in foil. Season it and let it cook over the fire.

You can eat straight from the foil or put it on a bun for a hearty and well-rounded meal.

6. Steak and Shrimp

Maybe you’re craving the finer things in life on your camping trip.

If you want to make a great impression on your camping friends or just want some luxury, try surfing and turf the easy way.

Dice up some steak, load up on jumbo shrimp, and pack it all in foil with corn on the cob, onions, and any seasonings you choose.

This benefit is that you can prepare your packets before you leave home.

Toss them in a camping cooler, and you’ll be able to have a much-deserved meal as soon as you get your campsite set up for the night. 

7. Kebabs

Another make-ahead meal is chicken kebabs (but you could substitute the chicken for any kind of meat you prefer). Slice up your favorite veggies and try to think outside the box.

You could use mushrooms, zucchini, onions, or peppers to give you a few ideas. Marinate the chicken and veggies in your favorite sauce, such as teriyaki, barbecue, or jerk sauce.

This is an easy way to make a meal, as these kebabs should only take about ten to fifteen minutes to cook all the way through.

Don’t forget to brush on more marinade as you’re cooking to pack in the flavor.

Keep in mind that this recipe can easily be adapted for vegetarians. Instead of using meat, all you need to do is double up on the veggies.

A few pieces of lemon on the kebab with your veggies will brighten up the whole meal. 

8. Pigs in a Blanket

Hot dogs are a staple item on camping trips, but you can elevate them just a little bit by making pigs in a blanket instead. This isn’t fancy, but it’ll satisfy those cravings for a hearty camp meal.

Wrap each hot dog in crescent roll dough purchased from the supermarket’s refrigerated section. Skewer them and cook over the campfire for a delicious lunch.

Pigs in a Blanket

9. Burgers

Managing a grill full of hamburgers can be challenging, especially if you only have one small pan in your gear. Instead, you can make as many burgers as you need by putting each burger into a foil pack.

This also allows your cheese to melt over the burger so that your mouth starts to water as soon as you carefully pull it from the campfire.

As a bonus, you can add frozen French fries into the foil packets, sprinkled with Cajun seasoning, for a delicious side dish that doesn’t require extra work!

10. Flatbread

You can’t go wrong with flatbread if you want something super simple. Purchase the bread from the grocery store, place it in the bottom of your skillet and load it with toppings.

You could use leftover chicken from kebabs with goat cheese and fresh tomato. Satisfy your sugar needs by smearing it with peanut butter, honey, or jam for a fancy PB&J.

You can even add a warm banana for a sweet twist.

11. BLT

Making your food ahead is a great way to preserve time at the campsite and minimize the dishes you’ll have to wash.

Fry up some of your favorite bacon at home, pack it in the cooler, and you have most of the fixings for a BLT.

You’ll have to layer up your pre-cooked bacon on your favorite bread, slice up a good beefsteak tomato, and add some lettuce leaves. No dishes are needed!

Side Dishes

If you need something to accompany your main meal, these sides are crowd-pleasers, and they couldn’t be easier!

1. Corn on the Cob

If you’re looking for a delicious side dish, you can’t go wrong with corn on the cob.

Get everyone in your party involved in shucking the corn, and then season it with butter, salt, and pepper before roasting it over the fire.

It should take about ten minutes to cook shucked corn and to get those beautiful char marks on the kernels. Campers looking for something to jazz up their corn might want to pack these ingredients.

Some cotija cheese, Mexican crema, cilantro, and chili powder are all you need to pack a powerful punch on the traditional corn.

Corn on the Cob

2. Grilled Asparagus

For those who want something green to grace their plates, asparagus is a prime choice for over-the-fire cooking. Snap off the woody ends and layer them thinly on a skillet over the campfire.

It should only take a few minutes for them to get tender. Seasoning them is easy: all you have to do is squeeze a little lemon juice on them and add some salt and pepper. 


Just because you’re roughing doesn’t mean you have to skip the sweet end of your meals. These desserts will have your mouth watering in no time.

1. Mountain Pies

Do you have a sweet tooth that won’t be curbed, even while camping in the great outdoors? The good news is that you can make a delicious pie with just a couple of ingredients and a pie iron.

If you have a pie iron (and these are worth the investment), you can load it up with buttered bread and canned pie filling and simply clamp it shut. 

2. Cinnamon Rolls

If you don’t have a pie iron, you don’t have to miss out on the sweets. Cinnamon rolls are an easy choice for campfire cooking.

You can purchase premade cinnamon rolls in a tube from the store, skewer them on a stick over the campfire, and get cooking. Five minutes on the bottom, top, and each side should be sufficient.

Remember to keep turning it to prevent the bread from burning.

Another choice is to load them into a cast iron pan over the campfire or camping stove.

This will just as easily get them cooked, but you’ll have more dishes to clean up when finished. Don’t forget to top them with sweet cream cheese frosting for a delectable dessert!

3. Bananas

Get the sweet fix you want with a quick and easy banana boat. You must peel back one side of the banana and scoop a little bit out.

In its place, you’ll add toppings like chocolate chips, peanut butter, marshmallows, or even pecans.

The benefit to these campfire bananas is that you can get as creative as you want as opposed to the more traditional s’more.


Cooking While Camping Isn’t Easy, You Need to Prepare Right…

These ideas will get you started if you’re at a loss for what to make at the campsite. Whether you want a hearty breakfast or something sweet, tons of creative options will get your mouth watering.

Go ahead and pull out that grocery list to start planning all your favorite meals during your next camping excursion.

Shailen Vandeyar

A proud Indian origin Kiwi who loves to plant trees and play with his pet bunny when not out in the woods, exploring the infinite beauty of mother nature.

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