Think Bigger Than Hotdogs
You can do much more with a campfire than just roast hot dogs. For your next camping trip, invest in an inexpensive camp grill (this REI one boasts a substantial cooking surface for only $26) and you’ll have a wood-burning fire ready for grilling some of the best meats and vegetables of your life. The wood from the fire imbues ingredients with a delicious smoky flavor that you just don’t get on conventional propane grills, and pairs particularly well with red meats and fatty fish.
These Grilled Salmon Skewers will hold up well on an open flame and produce a deeply flavorful and moist fish when grilled. Simply prepare the skewers at home, pack tightly in a marinated jar, pack in your cooler or refrigerator and toss onto the grill once you’re ready. Our classic Rosemary Lamb Chops or Bacon-Wrapped Meatball Skewers are also delicious and easy-to-prepare dishes that are perfect for an open-grill flame, as is this Grilled Eggplant With Pomegranate Seeds, which makes for a beautiful grilled side dish.
And if you don’t have a camp grill, there’s still plenty of opportunity for delicious open-flame cooking. These Baked Potatoes in Herb Sauce, Halibut and Fennel Packets and Italian Chicken Breasts With Tomatoes and Capers can all be cooked in campfire coals with just a little aluminum foil.
Ditch the Trail Mix
Whether you’re enjoying an early-dawn hike or need to power up after a swim in the lake, there’s no need to skimp on flavor when it comes to portable, camping-friendly snacks. Instead of bland granola bars, opt for our Amaranth and Date Cereal Bars, which keep well in extreme heat or cold and are packed with powerful plant-protein. Our Homemade Banana Chips, No Bake Energy Balls and Oven-Baked Nuts are other delicious, non-perishable snacks that are perfect for camping and require less than 20 minutes of prep time at home.
Create a S’mores Bar
While it’s hard to beat the holy trinity of graham cracker, marshmallow and milk chocolate, it’s more than worth trying out a riff or two of the classic recipe. A s’mores bar is a fun, delicious way to make best use of an open flame, and allows everyone to tailor their s’more to their taste. A bar of dark and white chocolate, a package of oreos or some shortbread, a jar of nutella and some chopped almonds or peanuts is a great place to start, but you really can’t go wrong with anything sweet when it comes to a s’mores bar.
Take Your Campfire Brew to the Next Level
Camping spirits tend to be humble and low-maintenance; bottled beer, a flask of warm whiskey. But even though you’re living like a pioneer for a couple days, we guarantee your trip will be more fun if you choose not to drink like one. Batched cocktails can be prepared at home ahead of time, sit well in the cooler for a few days and make for a lovely end-of-day treat as you settle in for a ghost story or two. This refreshing Cucumber and Vodka Cocktail is perfect if you’re camping in a hotter climate, while this Watermelon Punch with Raspberries and Mint or Planters Punch will immediately put you into vacation mode. If you’re feeling extra bougie, few things are more decadent than stargazing with a Classic Martini in hand. And except for the martini, all of these drinks can be prepared without alcohol for the kiddos or for anyone who doesn’t drink.