Menu Plans

camping out

Menu Plans

When planning a camping trip, a picnic or going to a cabin it is important to choose recipes that are easily assembled, can be prepared ahead of time or may be frozen for convenience.  Here are a few menu ideas to get you started.

 

Menu #1

  • Snacks
    • Moderate
      NUTS NOODLES AND STICKS

      Cook Time: 30 minutes

      Makes 8 Cups

    • Moderate
      ZUCCHINI PINEAPPLE BREAD

      Cook Time: 60 - 65 minutes

      Makes 2

    • Easy
      Trail Mix

      Cook Time: 0 mins

      Makes about 8 cups

  • Lunch
    • Moderate
      LUNCH BOX MINI BAGELWICHES

      Cook Time: 0 minutes

      Serves 4

    • Easy
      CHEWY NO-BAKE CEREAL COOKIES

      Cook Time: 0 minutes

      Makes 24

    • Medium
      Black Bean Hummus

      Cook Time: 5 mins

      Makes 1 3/4 cups

  • Dinner
    • Easy
      QUICK CHICKPEA SALAD

      Cook Time: 0 minutes

      Serves 6

    • Easy
      herbed burgers

      Cook Time: Variable

      Serves 4

    • Easy
      JALAPENO LIME POTATOES

      Cook Time: 30 - 35 minutes

      Serves 6

Menu #2

  • Snacks
    • Moderate
      BACKPACK SNACK BARS

      Cook Time: 35 minutes

      Makes 32

    • Easy
      CHEWY GRANOLA AND CRISPY RICE BARS

      Cook Time: 10 mins

      Makes 24

    • Easy
      CHOCOLATE CHIP PUMPKIN LOAF

      Cook Time: 60 mins

      Makes 2 loaves

  • Lunch
    • Medium
      SAUSAGE DOGS WITH MUSTARD SAUCE

      Cook time: 38 mins

      Serves 6 - 8

  • Dinner
    • Easy
      SMOKY BAKED BEANS

      Cook Time: 70 minutes

      Serves 8

    • Easy
      GRILLED PEACH SHORTCAKE

      Cook Time: 2 - 4 minutes

      Serves 8

    • Easy
      BEEF AND BISON KEBABS

      Cook Time: 15 - 20 minutes

      Makes 10

The 2 Hour Rule

It is important to follow the 2 hour rule when “dining” outdoors. The 2 hour rule states that all perishable or frozen foods must be refrigerated or frozen within 2 hours of being at room temperature or outdoors. If the weather is hot, more than 27°C (80°F), reduce that time to 1 hour and use your cooler. Any perishable foods that have been left outdoors for longer than these times should be discarded.

 

How to pack an insulated cooler

  1. Line the bottom with frozen ice packs.
  2. Place raw meat directly on top of ice packs. If this meat is not going to be cooked that day, it should be frozen and put into sealable plastic bags in a flat layer. Add more ice packs on top, if there is room. 
  3. The next layer is eggs, dairy and other perishable foods. Make sure all liquids are in sealed jars or plastic containers that don’t leak. 
  4. Next, layer in fruits and vegetables. Put lighter and more delicate ones on top.
  5. If you are only packing one cooler, and will need beverages before the food in your cooler, tuck bottles and cans into open spaces near the top. Try not to crush anything else.

Other Tips

  • Clean your cooler by washing with water and dish detergent; rinse and dry. If something has spilled in the cooler and you need to disinfect it, wash and then use a disinfecting spray or 1 tablespoon chlorine bleach in 4 cups of water.
  • Plan your menu so that perishable foods will be eaten, not left over, and will not have to go back into the cooler.
  • Use clean reusable ice packs. They are available in many sizes and often are more efficient at keeping temperatures colder.
  • Only put cold food into the cooler; pre-chill all items. Coolers are made to help keep food cool, not to cool them down.
  • Freeze bottles of water or juice boxes to act as cooler packs. Then drink the contents after they melt.
  • Wash and prepare fruits and vegetables at home. Package foods in re-sealable plastic bags or containers. This will keep bugs and dirt out and prevent cross contamination from other foods.
  • A full cooler keeps its cold temperature longer than a partly filled one. Empty spaces can be filled with clean towels.
  • Use more than one cooler. Keep one just for beverages and snacks as this one can be opened more frequently.
  • Open the cooler as little as possible and close it right away.
  • Always store your cooler in the coolest possible place when camping or picnicking. Keep it in the shade and cover with blankets. In the car, keep out of direct sunlight by using a blanket or sleeping bag.
  • Clean after use and store with the lid open for a few days. This will ensure that your cooler is dry and will help to remove food odours.