Tips for Storing Food While Camping
As an experienced camper and father of three, I know that food storage while camping can be a bit of a struggle. Not only do you want your food to stay fresh and protected from critters, you also want it to occupy the least amount of space possible. The good news is that there are a number of tips and tricks you can use to make sure your food storage game is on point while out camping.
Choose the Right Gear
The right gear for food storage is essential in making sure your food stays fresh and safe. Look for coolers or containers that are well-insulated and come with air-tight lids or covers. Having a few containers of varying sizes can also be useful, as you can store different types of food in different containers without worrying about them mixing together.
When selecting a cooler, try to go for one that is designed to keep your food cold. Ideally the one you get should also be able to keep your food warm or cool, depending on your needs. In terms of size, a medium-sized cooler should do the trick. Anything too small or too large will be more of a hassle to deal with.
Organize Your Food
Organizing your food is key when it comes to efficient camping food storage. Separate your food items based on the type of food, how often you’ll use them, and the expiration dates. And make sure to clearly mark each food container. Label things such as “Meals,” “Veggies,” “Fruits,” etc., so you know exactly what’s in each container.
Bring Extra Containers and Zipper Bags
It’s a good idea to bring along extra tougher containers like Ziplock bags and large plastic tubs. These are useful for storing items like soups, nuts, and condiments that need to stay fresh. You can also bring along a few extra smaller containers to store smaller snacks like candy bars, energy bars, chips, etc.
Find Suitable Refrigeration Options
If you’re going on a camping trip that’s far or remote enough where you don’t have access to a refrigerator, you’ll need to find suitable refrigeration alternatives. There are a few portable refrigerators and coolers that can be used in these kinds of situations, or you may want to consider a mini-fridge with a solar panel or generator power.
You can also try using a wet rag or frozen water bottle in your cooler. Place the wet rag or frozen water bottle in a container, and place it in the middle of the ice or colder items. This will help keep them at cooler temperatures for longer.
Be Smart with Placement
Where you place your food storage containers while camping is just as important as how you store your food. Keep your food away from direct sunlight whenever you can, and put your cooler in a shaded area. Placing it in direct sunlight could cause your food to spoil faster. Place it on the ground, ideally away from areas with a lot of foot traffic.
If you’re using a cooler or container with a lid or cover, make sure it’s securely fastened at all times to keep the pesky critters out. You might also want to look into using animal-proof containers that come with metal locks, such as bear canisters. This can help further protect your food from animals should you come across any on your camping trip.
Clean Any Containers and Utensils Used
Once you’re done using your food containers and utensils, it’s important to clean them before you put them away. This will help prevent any bacteria from growing and spoiling any other food items that you have stored. Make sure to thoroughly rinse the containers and utensils and dry them off before putting them away.
With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to store your food safely and efficiently when camping. A little bit of planning ahead of time can go a long way in making sure your food stays fresh and protected when you’re out in the wilderness. Good luck!