How to Create Delicious Meals When Camping on a Fire
Camping on a fire is the perfect way to connect with nature and slow down. Cooking on a fire cooks up delicious and nutritious meals, and all without the use of electricity or gas. Of course, cooking over an open flame takes practice and skill, but once you’ve got the basics down, outdoor cooking can be a real pleasure. From campfire soups to roasted vegetables, here’s everything you need to know about what to cook when camping on a fire.
First things first, most experts agree that safety is paramount when venturing into outdoor open-flame cooking. Make sure your fire is completely extinguished before you leave the campsite, and only light fire in areas where it’s allowed. Also, always keep a fire extinguisher or a jug of water nearby in case a spark starts to fly.
You’ll need a few pieces of camping equipment in order to successfully cook over an open flame. The first is a sturdy grate for the fire, which should be placed on a flat, level surface away from trees and flammable vegetation. You’ll also need a few large, clean rocks to create a heat-resistant base for your cooking. Finally, you’ll need some long-handled utensils, like tongs, skewers, and a cast-iron skillet.
To make your outdoor cooking experience easier, you might also want to bring a griddle for pancakes and other items that need to stay on a flat cooking surface. Some campers swear by aluminum foil and Dutch ovens for more complex meals, like roasting a chicken or baking a cobbler, but there are many other cooking techniques you can try, depending on your tastes.
Types of Food to Consider When Camping on a Fire
Eggs, bacon, and pancakes are some classic breakfast options, but why not try something a bit more adventurous? If space permits, consider bringing along a packet of pre-mixed waffle batter, and use a waffle iron over the fire for a hearty morning meal. A campfire Dutch oven can also be used to whip up a delicious bacon cheese quiche.
When it comes to main meals, there are plenty of options. For a quick and easy dinner, you can simply cook burgers or hot-dogs on the fire. You can also use a griddle or open fire to prepare stir fries. And if outdoor cooking is an integral part of your camping experience, why not prepare something a bit more special, like a fish, steak, or kabob?
As a camper, I’m partial to creating warm, comforting soups on the fire. There’s something about a simmering campfire soup that instantly warms the body up. You can make a variety of different soups, depending on what you have on hand and your taste preferences. Don’t forget to bring along your favorite herbs and spices to spice up the meal.
When it comes to sides, roasted potatoes, crackers, and French fries are all fantastic options. You can also use a tin foil packet for steaming vegetables or baking potatoes. In fact, thanks to the intense heat of an open flame, you can prepare almost any vegetable over the fire, including asparagus, squash, onions, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, artichokes, and mushrooms.
Campfire desserts can be just as decadent, if not more so, than those cooked indoors. S’mores is a campfire classic, and you can get creative by substituting the chocolate with caramel chips, marshmallow fluff, or peanut butter. Pineapple upside-down cakes, Dutch oven cobblers, and simple cast iron skillet brownies are all fantastic options for a scrumptious fire-cooked dessert.
Tips for Better Campfire Cooking
Now that you know what to cook when camping on a fire, here are some tips to make sure your outdoor cooking goes off without a hitch:
- Always use an appropriate fire-starting material (such as wood shavings or fire starter cubes) to ensure you get the fire going quickly and efficiently.
- If the flame is too low, add more fuel to the fire. Make sure you allow enough time for the fire to burn down to a good cooking temperature before starting to cook.
- Don’t crowd the fire too much when you’re cooking. You want the food to be cooked in the heat that the fire is producing, so adjust the food as necessary.
- Most importantly, be patient and enjoy the experience! Cooking over an open fire can take some time, so take this opportunity to connect with the outdoors and savor the smells and flavors that come with it.
Here’s a video to further help you become familiar with campfire cooking:
Cooking over an open fire is a great way to experience nature in a unique and flavorful way. By following the guidelines above, and flavors, you’ll be able to whip up some amazing meals that you can share with your family and friends when camping on a fire.