Camping is a popular activity in Australia, with many of us spending weekends away for weeks during the holiday break to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. There are many ways we can get away and camp; some prefer to set up close to amenities, some like to be as far as possible from civilisation and others like to hike and set themselves up in new places every night.

Whatever your preference for camping in Australia, you must realise that food is an essential consideration as you’ll likely want to spend less time going into stores to purchase food. You’ll need to stock up on items with extended shelf life requiring minimal cooling or preparation; one popular option is packs 100g of beef jerky. It can be a somewhat mind-boggling process as we’re so accustomed to the convenience of modern life and food accessibility.

What should you look for when preparing your culinary experience while away on your next camping trip? Let’s go through some of the options you have. Hopefully, this will enlighten you about food preparation possibilities before your next trip.

Dry Foods

Let’s start with the most accessible type of food to take on camping, dry foods. These ingredients are dehydrated, require no refrigeration and can last significant amounts of time before perishing. Dry foods are a great option as they have the highest shelf life and are the easiest to store. I wouldn’t skimp out on taking some dehydrated foods; you won’t go wrong by bringing some of these foods to your next trip.

Bread

Bread is one of the essential food items, and although it does have a time limit on usage, it will last for a few days at the most. 2-3 days is a considerable amount of time if you’re planning a weekend getaway, so stocking up on bread would be a no-brainer.

Cereal

The easiest way to start your day is with a bowl of cereal; these can last much longer as a breakfast food than traditional bacon and eggs. You don’t even need to simply eat them for breakfast as You can enjoy them any time of the day. You can also include porridge oats on this list which is a popular option.

Pasta

An absolute staple for campers and most of us even at home. Pasta is an accessible item to store and even easier to cook. All you need is a pot with water to prepare a delicious bowl of pasta; you can be creative with your ingredients and use whatever you have.

Rice

Rice is another great option you can use and take on your next trip. You can be creative with rice and add almost anything as a great stomach filler. Some great ideas are chilli con carne, paella, curries and more foods.

Vegetables and Proteins

The kinds of vegetables and proteins we can use for camping need to be stored in ways that can extend their shelf life. You can add these items to dry foods such as rice or pasta. These are usually held in cans or packaging. They need heating as preparation.

Tuna

Canned Tuna is a great option to use with sandwiches or even added to pasta dishes. This flexible food doesn’t need to be refrigerated and is an excellent source of protein. We can not store many protein-rich foods this way, so make sure you stock up.

Jerky

Dried jerky is a favourite for campers and hikers alike. This protein snack can last for months due to the moisture being drawn out and the protein being dried. There are many types of jerky, but the most popular is beef. It is easy to find packs online, or in-store as the shelf life of these products is so long.

Soups

Soups are an excellent option due to their simplicity, all you need to do is heat them, and you’ve got a complete meal. Most soups are already cooked and simply require heating simply for your personal preference. These are ideal because of their variety, and they last an exceptionally long time.

Beans

Canned baked beans are an absolute classic for camping, and you’ll be hard-pressed not to find campers that don’t have at least a few cans of baked beans. This delicious tomatoey delicacy can be enjoyed cold or heated up; many even eat it straight from the can; canned baked beans also work well for breakfast.

Jars & Condiments

A range of things can be stored and preserved in jars that can serve as great additions to your camping meals. These add some flavour to the things you’ll be cooking and generally don’t have to be refrigerated and can be stored for extended periods.

Pasta Sauces

If you can find some cans of pasta sauces that you enjoy, then I encourage you to stock up for your trip. Pasta sauces are great as they are canned and last a long time; we can add them to more dry foods such as pasta or baked beans; feel free to get creative.

Jam

Jam is great for many uses and, like most things on this list, doesn’t have a requirement to be refrigerated and certainly will last. The sugar content and lack of oxygen within the jam stop the fruit from degrading.

Peanut Butter

Another absolute favourite is peanut butter; this nutritious snack can be stored anywhere and has various uses like jam. Some even like to eat it straight with a spoon, but if you want to be more conventional, you can add it to your sandwiches or toast.
Photo by Myles Tan on Unsplash

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