How to Prepare Nutritious Camping Meals That Won’t Spoil

by Emma on August 11, 2017

How to Prepare Nutritious Meals That Won't Spoil

How to Prepare Nutritious Meals That Don't Spoil

If you’re looking for some simple meals that you can eat when you go camping, then you’ll love this post.

I’ve put together some nutritious and easy to prepare camping meals that don’t perish or spoil easily.

In this post, you’ll learn everything you need to know about optimizing your diet, from breakfast to dinner and everything in between.

I’ve broken it down into both cooked and uncooked foods, so even if you don’t have access to all the latest cooking gear and facilities you won’t you go hungry.

Check it out:

Camping is meant to be minimalistic.

You make do with the fewest essentials and enjoy nature at its best, with you feet up in a hammock, all the while living off the land or your non-perishable food rations.

Unfortunately, fresh produce doesn’t last long on a camping trip.

To eat healthy while camping you have to plan your meals ahead.

This means deciding how many meals you will have in a day and what food preparation tools you will or can bring along for the trip.

Most non-perishable foods cut across the different types of hikes. Whatever your survivalist niche (trail hiking, mountaineering, kayaking or long haul expeditions) the below foods groups are a must:

  • High protein foods – beef jerky, salmon jerky, dried beans, soy beans
  • Nuts, seeds, and cereals – chia, pumpkin and sunflower seeds/ oatmeal /trail mix
  • Carbohydrates – pita pockets and tortilla wraps
  • Dried fruit – raisins, dried bananas, dried apples
  • Dairy products like cheese (unless you are lactose intolerant)
  • Preserved jam, peanut butter or almond butter
  • Canned meats –tuna, salmon, poultry

Does it have to be cooked?

Campers and hikers already understand that they are not in for gourmet dining. After a day of hiking or walking for hours on the trail or if you have an early start, you may be hungry but the last thing you want to do is to start cooking.


Below are some camping meals that are easy to prepare without cooking

Peanut butter and jam sandwiches: This is a great start to your day as a breakfast option.
Cereal and milk: Another good option for breakfast with dried fruit like dried banana or raisins.
Lunch Options:
There are several options to work with in making a hearty lunch that is healthy and filling

Cold cuts sandwiches: using cheese and hummus with some beef jerky, tomatoes and onions in your pita pocket will give you the energy to keep going. In fact, you do not even have to stop for the meal.
Bean or tuna salad: Consider a bean salad. Beans are a great source of protein and are also a very filling option. Mixed with onions, tomatoes and other seasonal vegetables they make a delicious meal. You can rehydrate dried beans earlier in boiling water with some seasoning in preparation for lunch.
Another salad option could be a tuna salad. This canned meat has high protein content and combined with vegetable is hearty and nutritious. Coming straight from the can it is safe and ready for use. For both salad options, you may want to pack some olive oil.
To top up your lunch you can indulge in some seed or nuts from your trail mix.

Non-cooked meals are still an option for dinners as well using your pita pockets and tortilla wraps.
Wraps: Cold cuts from turkey or beef wrapped in the two options above provide a filling dinner. Add vegetables, onions, and tomatoes to bulk it up and wash it down with your favorite beverage.
Cheese board: Several kinds of cheese, hummus, tabouli, dried fruit, cracker, olives and even the pita will make a delicious dinner. Add to this tableau some cold cuts and something to drink and you will go to bed full.
Salad pasta featuring cold cuts: The pre-cooked pasta and cuts thrown together with onion, tomatoes, and vegetables make a healthy filling option. In fact, this is great if you prefer a lighter meal option before bed.


Source: 662903/outdoor-cooking-and-camping?photo=YccQtENMuXw

When it is cooked
Non cooked food can only be palatable for so long. Soon your taste buds will be clamoring for something hot and rich to break the monotony. So here are some options for a hot meal from ingredients that don’t go bad.
Instant oatmeal: with just boiling water you can enjoy a hot breakfast that gives you energy on the trail. If you need to further boost your energy levels put some ground chia seeds into the oatmeal.
Potatoes: Potatoes are a great substitute for bread (carbohydrates) on the trail. They don’t go stale and have a firm constitution many hours after they have been cooked. Just make sure you do not overcook them. Eat them with eggs for a filling breakfast.
A packet of soup is great to warm you up and needs very little preparation time. It is a comfort food that works well in lifting up spirits and boosting morale. However, it is not enough sustenance on its own. The left over potatoes from breakfast or a sandwich is great satisfying accompaniments.
Pasta: Steamed vegetables and pasta seasoned with your favorite spices and some cheese are a great dinner meal in front of a raging campfire. Add in some of the dried beans that have been revived using boiling water and the nutritive value of the meal shoots up.



If you want to enjoy your time outside, don’t neglect the importance of fueling your body properly and the opportunity for fun that preparing your meals can offer.

A simple meal plan works best. You should prioritize foods that don’t spoil are nutrient dense. Planning is the key to ensuring that you have tasty and healthy food for the duration of your time outdoors.

With a little preparation, you’ll be well on you way to ensuring you’re well fed and that you enjoy your time outdoors.

This post was written by Emma

Emma Hayes loves all things outdoors - hiking, camping, and survival. She lives in Sydney Australia with her two dogs and writes @

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