50 easy camping meal ideas anyone can do (In Australia)
One of the best ways to up the enjoyment level on a camping trip is to have food that is delicious. Now, the taste is important, but its also got to be easy enough to cook, and suitable for camping.
You can’t be cooking for hours on end every day, or using hundreds of ingredients for each dish or it just takes away from the whole experience.
In this post, we look at 50 easy camping meals in Australia that are guaranteed to take your camping experience to a whole new level.
Bacon and eggs
The stereotypical camping breakfast is bacon and eggs, and for good reason. It’s easy to cook, tastes good and will give you plenty of energy for the day. You can scramble, poach, fry or make an omelette with the eggs and have them on their own, a wrap, burrito or toast.
Hash browns and baked beans
We’ve started taking hash browns with us almost every camping trip now, as they are so easy to cook. Throw them on a pan in the fire, or a grill, or on the Weber.
Baked beans are easily done too, and in combination with some toast and a few other things as your taste calls for you can have a very quick and tasty breakfast.
Muesli and yoghurt
If we are in a rush, we’ll grab muesli, yoghurt and fruit. This is usually on travel days, where we pull over to eat for breakfast, or if we are wanting to get going early in the morning. It tastes OK, is healthy and has plenty of energy.
Another well known camping meal is pancakes. We normally make our own mix these days, but you can use the premixed bottles too. They are pretty quick to eat, and if you have them with berries, cream and maple syrup they are delicious too.
Custard and fruit
Sarah introduced us to eating custard and fruit for breakfast when camping. We don’t do it often, but its a tasty meal to have on a cool day, and is pretty quick and easy to get going. We make the custard from powder on the stove in a saucepan, and just used fruit in a container that is ready to go.
If ever there was a simple camping meal, damper takes the cake. Throw a few ingredients together, check the consistency when mixed and drop it in the fire in a camp oven. Plain damper is tasty, but these days we like to add a bit of apple and cinnamon damper to give it some extra kick.
If you haven’t done it in a camp oven before, check this out – Camp Oven Damper.
Blue berry pikelets
Pikelets are another great meal, especially for young kids. We often buy the frozen blue berries, and knock them up quickly early in the morning.
Tomato, Bacon, Onion and Mushroom
We really need a better name for this, because its delicious, and one of my favourite breakfasts. We’ll often have it on toast, but the combination is super tasty and something I often look forward too.
There’s something nice about a ham and cheese croissant, slowly roasted over the fire. These are easy to prepare, taste delicious and are something a bit different from the usual camping breakfasts!
The big breakfast
One of our favourite camping meals is a big spread for breakfast. Each group cooks up a portion of food, and then you combine it together to create the ultimate feast with friends and family. It really is the best start to a day in the bush!
Sarah loves French Toast. It’s not something that I’ve fallen in love with, but it is easy, quick and simple.
If you have a nice fire ticking along, using a jaffle iron to make a breakfast toasty is a great way to kickstart the day. We often do bacon and cheese, but realistically you could put anything in that tickles your fancy.
When we are doing a lot of remote camping, we take a heap of wraps. They don’t need refrigerating, take up barely any space and they last forever. A loaf of bread is far more bulky and starts to go bad after a couple of days at most.
Wraps are pretty versatile too; you can use them for bacon and eggs at breakfast, or salad and meat for lunch, or even pulled pork for dinner.
Our lunch wraps are most commonly cheese, salad and ham, or left over roast meat. Sometimes I’ll eat them with tuna and mayonnaise, or tomato and cheese, but they are always good. The secret is to make sure you have plenty of good sauces; pickles, chutney and mayonnaise; it makes a big difference!
Tuna and crackers
Crackers are another item that don’t take up much space, and they are nice and light too. We’ll often have crackers with tuna, or with cheese. It’s quick to make, doesn’t need any refrigeration and you can eat as much as you feel like without worrying about left overs.
One of my favourite lunches for camping now that we have a Baby Weber is Turkish bread. We put mayonnaise over the top, and then chunks of cooked chicken, capsicum, spring onions, avocado, sundried tomatoes, bacon, cheese and anything else you can think of.
Throw them in the weber (or I guess a camp oven would work) for about 20 minutes and you have one of the tastiest, and easiest lunches around!
A big spread
One of our favourite lunches when camping is the full spread. Sarah literally bought a platter plate a while back, and I chuckled when I saw it.
The thing is though, it gets used a lot. Cut up fruit, vegetables, meat and add some dips and crackers and you are onto a winner. It’s not that time consuming to make, the kids get to eat what they want and its healthy food.
At the start of a trip, we’ll always take some bread. This gets eaten first for lunches, so it is used before it goes bad. From there, we move onto wraps. You can do all sorts of sandwiches, and our kids love eating anything from basic spreads like cream cheese and jam through to lemon butter.
We much prefer salad and meat sandwiches, or bacon and egg together
Particularly after a big dive, we love digging into a burger. Bacon, egg, pineapple and some form of meat (chicken/beef) with salad to taste and you can have the tastiest lunch going around. A couple of burgers and we are happy to kick back at camp for the rest of the day!
A Jaffle iron can spit out some pretty mean jaffles if you get the temperatures right. Put some butter on both sides of your bread, and fill the inside with what you like, then do your best to cook it to perfection. Again, I always come back to mayonnaise, tomato, ham and cheese.
We’ve done Bruschetta for lunch a number of times now, and its super easy and tasty. I’ve seen people do it uncooked, or a Weber works really well.
Get some nice bread, cut it and apply olive oil. Toast it off in the Weber, then add your cheese, tomato, herbs and what ever you enjoy. It’s light, tasty and super fast to do.
If you’ve never smoked your own fish, you’ve been missing out. We’ve done herring, salmon, mackerel and plenty of other oily fish, and its always delicious. A small smoker sets you back $50 to $100, or you can smoke fish over a weber using smoking chips, or smoking sawdust in aluminium foil with holes in it.
We always carry a number of stainless steel Kebab skewers, and really enjoy making them. Capsicum, onion, tomato, chicken and a nice sauce roasted over the fire, or the weber makes for a magic lunch.
There’s so many different kebab recipes that you can use, and trying something different is always a bit of fun.
Just because there’s no Bunnings nearby doesn’t mean you can’t make a mean sausage sizzle. Just fry some onion and snags, and put them in a nice bun and some sauce, and you are set. This is so fast, and easy to do, and the kids always love it.
Whether its a cruisy camp oven dinner that you start in the early afternoon over the fire, or a quick meal that you put together in 10 minutes dinner is pretty important, and we’ve found a range of meals that balance taste, time and difficulty to cook and nutritional value:
A good camp oven potato bake is delicious. Bacon, onion, mayo, French onion soup, cheese and of course potatoes will have the base recipe nailed, and cooked in a camp oven or in the Weber makes for a pretty easy, and quick meal to prepare. We’re always on the lookout for easy camping meals for the family, and this is perfect!
The ultimate camp oven meal is a roast, and chicken is one of the easiest to get right. Cook the chicken first, and then add the vegetables about half way through.
You can do this on a Weber or Ziggy, or in a camp oven on the fire. There’s a tonne of different spices and additions you can make, but even a plain chook and vegetables is delicious.
Fish and Chips
We do our best to eat a lot of seafood freshly caught when we travel, and making chips when camping is pretty easy. We’ve even been known to bring a chip cutter with us. Fry the chips in oil and let them drain, and have it with some fresh fish.
We really enjoy eating a whole fish off the bone cooked on a fire, or if the kids are around we’ll normally fillet and skin the fish so its easier to eat.
Another favourite roast is pork, especially once you’ve learnt to nail the crackle. This is a pretty economical meal that tastes great, and like a roast chicken, is really easy to prepare and get going.
If you have a Weber, cooking Pizza is super easy, and the result is amazing. We often make Pizza at home, and being able to do it in the middle of no where is nothing short of amazing. We generally buy the bases (although will be trying to make our own soon) and add what ever toppings we like.
Bacon, pineapple, cheese, sauce, spring onions and some salami usually goes down well, or we’ll use left over chicken or pulled pork if its available.
This is one of our go to easy camping meals for a family, as our kids always devour them, and that’s often half the battle.
We don’t often cook Ribs, but always look forward to them. They take up a fair bit of room, which means they normally only come on short trips where we have plenty of fridge or freezer space.
Cook them low and slow in the camp oven or Weber, and you’ll be onto a winner. We often start ours at about 2:30 – 3:00PM and they are ready for a 5PM dinner.
Keep the moisture levels up in the oven, or you’ll end up with dried ribs!
Our kids love pasta, and spaghetti bog is one of the easiest camping meals around. We’ll either have the ingredients with us, or often use a vacuum sealer to pre-make the mince and sauce before leaving home.
In the latter case, we just heat the sauce up and cook some pasta, and you can have a meal ready in under 10 minutes. Make ahead camping meals are a game changer when you are travelling with young kids.
Whilst staying at Warroora Station, we got a small pumpkin and cut the top off nicely, then removed the centre of it, and some of the pumpkin itself. We then filled it up with cheese, bacon, onion, potato chunks and threw it on the camp fire in an oven to cook.
It took a bit longer than we had hoped, but the end result is really quite delicious. Scoop it out, or cut it up to share, and you’ll all have a tasty, simple and easy meal. Stuffed pumpkin is a bit unique, and surprisingly tasty!
Another simple, and tasty meal when camping is Taco’s. We’ll often have the soft version, but even the normal Taco shells are doable.
All you need is some mince, the Taco packs and a variety of vegetables. A bit of sour cream and cheese makes them amazing, and having some fresh vegetables is greatly appreciated.
If you’ve never had a Cob loaf, you’ve been missing out. However, you can do them when camping too, and that makes it even better. Simply cut the lid off a nice Cob Loaf, and dig the bread out. This is used for dipping ‘spoons’ later on, so keep it in chunks.
From there, fill the loaf with delicious stuffing, and cook it in a camp oven, with the chunks of bread at the end. Use the ‘spoons’ to eat the cob loaf, and when you’ve run out start breaking the loaf up and eat that too. There’s a heap of different fillings that you can use, many of which keep you coming back for more.
Chicken avo’ pasta
A good chicken and avocado pasta goes down really well in our family, and its quick and easy to make. This stems from the amazing pasta at Pastacup, and although we can never match the quality its still greatly enjoyed.
Kransky sausage pasta
Sarah makes a mean pasta with creamy sauce, kransky sausage, mushrooms and some other bits and pieces. Often we’ll make the sauce before camping, and take it in a container, or vacuum sealed. Cook the pasta, add the sauce and you are done, in under 10 minutes!
Nothing beats a nice curry when you are camping, especially on a cold night. Potato, coconut milk, chicken and red Thai curry mix and you are onto a winner every time. Sometimes we’ll have it with rice, or more than often just eat it on its own.
A more common camping dinner for us is a BBQ and salad. We’ll do sausages, chicken, steak, chops, fish, crayfish or anything else we can get our hands on. It’s quick, easy and tastes delicious.
Another easy camping meal is Nacho’s; you can knock them together in a matter of minutes, and the kids always enjoy them. Sour cream, good chips and plenty of toppings and you are onto a winner.
Sushi and Sashimi
We love Japanese food, and its surprisingly easy to make (although not as tidy looking!). Sushi requires very limited cold items, which makes it the perfect camping meal.
Cooking the rice is quick, and then you just roll it all up carefully using a sushi mat. We generally take smoked salmon, but even chicken and avocado is easy to do, and delicious.
Sashimi is even easier, and we will always do this with fresh tuna caught fishing or spearing. Simply cut it up (get the grain direction right) and dip it in some soy sauce. Nothing compares.
Stir fries are quick, easy and healthy. A heap of greens, some chicken or beef and sauce, and you can cook it to perfection very easily.
Once you’ve eaten pork that falls apart with a tiny touch, you’ll never go back. This is very easy to do as well, providing you keep the camp oven moist with plenty of fluid. Cook it slowly over the fire for several hours and it will fall apart in your lap.
We eat a fair bit of soup, and Pumpkin Soup when camping is really simple, and easy to do.
If you have a part of a meal, its easy enough to finish the rest off. We have a couple of sides that we do often, which fit in with a range of other meals:
If we have the weber out, we’ll often put a couple of Hash browns on. They are easy, tasty and simple to take camping. The kids love them, and that’s half the battle. Yes, we avoid doing this really regularly, but we feel they are decent enough.
Our kids are big on chicken nuggets (who’s aren’t!), and we use them occasionally, but have moved to chicken strips, or tenders, which they are eating with no issues.
Campfire baked potatoes
Nothing beats potatoes cooked in the fire with aluminium foil. This is a super simple, and tasty side that always goes down well.
Sarah discovered a while ago that you can cut potatoes, carrots, sweet potato and pumpkin into small cubes, and fry them off to get a pretty tasty side. This is done with some butter, and often sweet corn, but you end up with a really tasty, and fairly healthy side that our kids absolutely love.
Pineapple or Beetroot
We always carry a couple of tins of Pineapple and Beetroot with us, to have as a side when we need some vegetables and fruit. The kids love Pineapple, and won’t really eat Beetroot, but we enjoy it!
Mash potato (and sweet potato or pumpkin)
I eat a lot of food, and our kids enjoy mash potato, but Sarah will often cook it with some sweet potato or pumpkin in it as well. You end up with a more orange coloured mash, but its delicious and so simple to make.
You can’t go wrong with a cob or two of sweet corn. It’s amazing done in the weber with the husk left on, or you can cut it and put it in boiling water. Our kids will usually eat this, its cheap as and if you get nice corn its unbeatable.
We don’t often do dessert when camping, but from time to time its a great treat for the kids, and the adults. Normally this is done when we are group camping, or have a relaxed afternoon at camp with plenty of time. You might be surprised at what you can whip up when camping for dessert:
Golden Syrup Dumplings
Anything you can do in the oven at home, you can do in a camp oven when camping. Golden Syrup Dumplings with ice cream is one of the best camping desserts around, and its really easy to make too.
Marshmallow and Chocolate Damper
There’s some pretty plain and boring damper recipes out there. This is not one of them. Despite the idea sounding quite hilarious, its actually a delicious damper that can be shared with lots of people as its so rich.
You wouldn’t believe how easy it is to make Scones when camping. You can do them in a camp oven, and we’ve even done them in a frying pan. A bit of cream and jam and you are onto the ultimate mid day snack, or dessert if you please!
Another simple dessert that always goes down is rice pudding. This can be done over the stove or fire very quickly and easily, and people always come back for more.
Asides from the chocolate and marshmallow damper done above, there are plenty of other recipes. We really enjoy apple and cinnamon, and often make them as a snack, and to kill some time.
Like I mentioned above, if you can bake it at home, you can do it when camping too. We’ve done a range of different cakes when camping, including our Pineapple Mistake Cake, which is a real hit and couldn’t possibly be simpler to make.
Another super easy camping dessert is apple crumble. Tinned apple, with oats and brown sugar make for a delicious snack after dinner. This works best when you can apply heat from above, like in a camp oven.
The latest dessert we’ve done is using little ice cream cones, that you fill with chocolate chunks and marshmallows. Cover them in al-foil and put them on low heat near a fire, and it will melt together and make a tasty snack that the kids love. We do this with the smallest cones you can find, as its pretty rich
There’s lots of great camping meals out there, and I’m sure you have some that are favourites. Getting the balance between taste, goodness and ease of making is always the challenge; what’s your favourite camping meals?
Thanks for the chuckle this morning! Glad it was helpful. It’s always easy to forget something!
We’d love to have you here, but the weather hasn’t been too great.
Enjoy your trip
I stumbled upon this page, it was the second one down the list, after I googled “camping, left meat at home, got eggs, suggestions?”. What a terrific list of suggestions for meals. Bacon, eggs, cheese, tomato and lettuce burgers, and salad it is then! And a quick trip back into town tomorrow to fetch the meat from the freezer! Hope you continue to enjoy the Big Lap. Thinking if you guys especially at the moment and wish we were there! Heather (aka ning nong who forgot the meat!!) and Mark (who’s grateful for your post!)