If there’s one important thing you need to know about cooking outdoors, it’s that excellent food equals happy campers!
If you love cooking, then you probably already know how a great kitchen has a significant role in creating delicious dishes. A kitchen that has complete drawers and cabinets, a spacious countertop, and all the right products for slicing, zesting, chopping, peeling, and coring should allow you to go about any cooking process relatively hassle-free.
You may not be able to have all these things in your camp kitchen, but that doesn’t mean you have to struggle with cooking there either. If you’re completely new to setting up a kitchen at camp, then get ready to absorb all the information you can from our comprehensive guide on building the ideal campsite kitchen.
Tips on Creating a Campsite Kitchen
1. The Key Is in Organization
The last few days before you finally get the chance to enjoy the outdoors is the perfect time to prepare all your campsite kitchenware. Last-minute preparations are always the worst and often leads to hungry stomachs, limited meals and snacks, and not a lot of food variety.
The first thing you need to do is grab a bag that’s easy to pack, like a large travel backpack or tote bag. Make sure to pack all the stuff you need for your kitchen at camp, like BPA-free water containers (Nalgene bottles are the best!) to house your ingredients, a smaller bag for your utensils, and perfectly-sized food containers that are extra durable.
2. Be Prepared
One thing’s for sure: anything can happen outdoors so you must always be ready. This applies to food preparation, too.
If you’re especially picky about the food you eat, then make sure to buy ingredients and cookware ahead of time, so you’ll have exactly what you need to create your favorite dishes at camp. Otherwise, if it’s a spur-of-the-moment trip, then be prepared to ditch those go-to recipes for meals you can whip up using basic ingredients bought from the nearest grocery store.
Your campsite kitchen might not have everything, but at least it won’t allow you to go hungry.
3. Spices Are Essential
With spices, you’ll never go hungry. When cooking at camp, you won’t usually be able to make the most flavorful meals since some of the ingredients required to create these courses don’t last long outdoors. Enter the variety of spices that can make almost everything you cook taste amazing.
Salt and pepper, seasoned salt, cumin, lime, red chili pepper, and olive oil spray are spices that will make your cooking experience outdoors more fulfilling.
4. Have Other Outdoor Kitchen Essentials
What else could you possibly need out in the woods? Well, pretty much the same stuff you need indoors—and then some. Since cooking will take place at a campsite, you need to secure other important items, such as:
- Camp mug
- Microfiber towel
- Leather gloves
- Flatware and dinnerware
- Trash Bags
We all go about cooking at camp in different ways, so you probably have your list that doesn’t include some of these items. You could also have a list that includes all these items and more. In any case, consider the trash bag non-negotiable unless you have a better, more efficient way of disposing of your garbage at camp.
5. Keep These Few Things in Mind
When packing additional items, consider ones that don’t take up too much space. For instance, if you want to add more flavor to your food, bring some condiment packets, like ketchup, mustard, or mayo. What’s great about these additions is that they’ll barely take up any real estate inside your bag. Just make sure to dispose of the used sachets properly.
Other snacks that won’t take up too much space are Nutella and peanut butter. Plus, you can make them into sandwiches easily, so you don’t actually have to bring the entire container with you. Just whip up some sandwiches before you leave for camp, and you’re all done.
Another great tip would be to pack instant coffee. In that way, you don’t have to struggle to make your favorite brew at camp. You could also opt to keep cooking simple and ditch this tip completely. In case you want variety and a little more excitement in your meals, though, then consider this step to setting up a campsite kitchen necessary.
You can even go the extra mile and pack collapsible chairs, sinks, ovens, and coolers for a cooking experience at camp that could potentially exceed the one you usually have at home in terms of convenience.
Whether you’re going for simple or the whole nine yards with your camping kitchen setup, the most important steps are to prepare and organize ahead of time. Steps three to five, while also important, will mostly depend on your taste and preferences.
If you’re opting for the whole nine yards, then a great camping table is necessary. Here’s one that’s worth checking out for your next camping trip!