Camping Without a Fridge: How to Store Food for a Trip
When you go camping, you don’t plan on having a fridge handy for storing your perishable goods. But that doesn’t mean you have to resort to processed foods for your entire trip! It is possible to cook delicious and nutritious meals while camping without a fridge. With the right information and the right preparation, campers can enjoy a wide variety of fresh, nutrient-rich dishes.
As an experienced camper and father of three, I have plenty of tips on how to safely store you food without a fridge and what meals you can make using these techniques. With these tips, you’ll be able to create a range of spectacular meals for your camping trips with no refrigeration required right at your fingertips!
Tips for Storing Food Without a Fridge
- Keep unopened, dry canned goods at room temperature. It is safe to store unopened canned food for up to 16-18 months.
- Pack certain produce items together. When packing produce, the right combination is important. Every fruit and vegetable has its own optimal temperature, humidity, and respiration rate. For example, tomatoes should always be packed separately, while apples and potatoes should be packed together.
- Store cans in a cool, dry spot. Cans should not be stored in direct sunlight or outside in damp weather. Storing them in cool, dry spots and away from heat sources will have items that have a long shelf life.
- Store dry and dehydrated foods in sealed containers. Packaged dry goods such as flour, grains, beans, and nuts should always be stored in sealed containers or zip lock bags. This will help protect the food from pests and flooding.
- Pack protein-rich foods in jars and containers. Mouth-watering meats like jerky, salami, bacon, and fish are rich in protein and they do not require refrigeration. These types of food should be stored in air-tight jars and containers to preserve texture and flavor.
Camp Food You Can Make Without Refrigeration
Storing food without refrigeration can be tricky, but campers can still enjoy a variety of delicious meals. Here are some of the tastiest meals you can make on your camping trips without a fridge:
- Rice bowls: These bowls are easy to make and you can customize them with any ingredients you like. Start with a base of cooked grain like quinoa, farro, or brown rice. Then, top it with roasted vegetables, nuts, dried fruit, and your favorite sauces.
- Dehydrated veggie chips: Veggie chips are a delicious and healthy snack. All you have to do is slice your favorite vegetables, like carrots, beets, sweet potatoes and zucchini. Arrange the slices on a dehydrator tray and leave them in for 8 to 12 hours. You will end up with crisp vegetable chips that you can take camping with you and enjoy as a crunchy snack.
- Trail mix: All you need to make trail mix is a mix of your favorite nuts and seeds. Throw in some dried fruit, chocolate chips, or even freeze-dried yogurt bits and you have an energizing snack for your camping trip.
- Cherry tomato and basil quinoa salad: This is a light and refreshing salad that is perfect for summer camping trips. Quinoa is a healthy grain that can be cooked in advance and stored in jars. Add some cherry tomatoes, fresh basil leaves, and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar for extra flavor. You can enjoy this salad as a main course or as a side dish.
Here is a video by The Pink Palate showing how to meal prep for camping without a fridge:
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Store dry goods in sealed containers.
Dehydrated veggie chips make a great snack without needing a fridge.
Cherry tomato and basil quinoa salad is a great meal to enjoy without a fridge.
Camping without a fridge doesn’t mean you have to resort to eating processed food. With the right planning and supplies, you can enjoy healthy and tasty meals, such as rice bowls, veggie chips, trail mix, and quinoa salad. Whatever recipes you decide to make, be sure to store all your food in airtight containers to keep it fresh and safe.
Now that you know how to store and prepare foods without a fridge, you’re all set to have the most delicious and enjoyable camping trip without any worries about food spoilage.