Going on a camping trip is one of the most exciting and memorable events anyone can ever have in life. There is something special about going to meet nature in its raw beauty. Camping is a relaxing activity, and is a great way to unwind and unkink those stressed muscles.
Camping outdoors starts with the desire to be away from the hustle and bustle, but it does not end there. There is much to consider once you get the camping itch: where to go, when to go, which route to take, what gear to pack, and most importantly, what to eat. It may sound simple, but planning meals can be daunting especially for first time campers.
Cooking the old fashion way might be a challenge, but it’s far from impossible. There are several one-pot recipes you can try that are filling and absolutely delicious. For those chilly nights and cold mornings outside, soups are the perfect meal to warm up while relishing the great outdoors.
Camping food does not equate to “instant” or “fast”; much like cooking at home, you can prepare home-cooked quality food while camping with the right tools and techniques. Here is a quick guide, some tips, plus five awesome camping soup recipes you can try to make cooking in camping trips a worthwhile (and yummy!) experience for you.
COOKING METHODS FOR CAMPING
There are many ways to cook during camping, and it depends from one camper to another. The most common method used, however, is by using direct heat. One example is placing foil-wrapped food over burning hot coals to cook food fast and with high heat.
Another method best used for cooking soups is by making an open fire and placing a grate over it. Heat received from this method is moderate, so it is apt for boiling soups longer to make it more flavorful.
Cooking soups outdoors requires the balance between the amount of hot coal and its concentration. Heat from hot coal is inconsistent, but once you get the right technique, it will be as easy as cooking on a stove.
To achieve a successful cookout while camping, you have to pack the right cooking materials that are especially made for outdoors. Do not forget to bring matches or a lighter if you are going to make an open fire. You can also use a modern flint with a magnesium bar that can start fire without the risk of getting wet or empty.
For cooking pots and utensils, you may want to get the stainless steel variety. These are usually lightweight and compact, making them easier to store and carry. You should also choose the eco-friendly option, which means materials that are free from BPA. You do not want any health risk to mar a good camping trip.
We specifically love Barbeqa’s Cook Set that’s perfect for camp cooking. This set includes a Kettle Pot and two Insulated Bowls that are of high quality. The SS304 grade finish is durable and tough, perfect for the outdoor setting.
Mroeover, the set is BPA-free and are corrosion-resistant. Barbeqa guarantees 100% safety and satisfaction with their products. That’s enough reason to trust them for your outdoor cooking needs.
TIPS WHEN COOKING SOUPS OUTDOORS
- Prepare the veggies ahead of time. You can wash, slice and dice vegetables the night before your trip so you do not have worry about doing all of it and prolonging cook time. Also, pay attention to how you cut veggies: the finer they are, the easier and faster they cook.
- Add carbohydrates. Soups cook faster if you add some fine noodles or instant rice while cooking.
- Bring water. Even if your campsite might be close to a water source, it would be safer to just bring your own water for the soup. Using water from questionable sources affect the taste and can potentially harm your health.
- Use flavor cubes instead of broth. To save weight, refrain from bringing broth and use cubes or powdered bouillon instead. They give the same flavor minus the bulk bringing broth would make.
- Bring a variety of vegetables. The beauty of soups is that they can be mixed with any vegetable. To have a healthier option, ask your camp mates to bring different vegetables for your camp soup.
- Cover pots and bowls. Protect your food by always covering your cooking pots and bowls. This will keep insects and dirt from spoiling your food.
- Measure and pack ingredients. For easier camp cooking, have the ingredients measured and ready. Pack them in separate airtight bags if possible. This is to maintain the freshness and ensure precise cooking. This will also guarantee that you don’t worry about excess ingredients spoiling.
- Bring potatoes. The starch in potatoes are great for absorbing excessive salt. If you have put too much salt on a recipe, just add some peeled potatoes to make it less salty.
- Pre-cook meats. Not many do this, but you can actually pre-cook meats that you will mix in the soup. This is to save time and ensure that the meat is cooked through. You can freeze them the night before and put in an insulating bag if possible. Also, make sure to not let it stay too long before cooking, or it might spoil.
- Leftovers for breakfast. If you have leftover ingredients from the soup, you can use these to make an omelet. This way, you don’t have to take back leftovers with you.
FIVE EASY-TO-COOK CAMPING SOUP RECIPES
Soups are easy-to-prepare meals that are great for outdoors. Sipping a spoonful of flavorful soup during chilly camping mornings is enough to get started for the day. Also, it’s a great meal to cap the night. Soups are hearty options that can be shared by everyone while camping.
Here are five soup recipes that are guaranteed to make you full and energized for a great camping day ahead:
1. Potato Soup
The Potato Soup is a preferred camping soup because it can feed a large group of up to 12 people. This is great for warming up during cool autumn camping trips. It’s a perfectly delicious and simple meal to share and enjoy.
- ¾ pound of diced bacon
- 1 medium-sized onion, chopped
- 5 pounds of potatoes. Peeled and cut in bite-sized chunks
- 1 medium-sized carrot, cut fine or grated
- 5-6 cups of water (enough to go over potatoes)
- 2 bouillon cubes, chicken flavor
- 12 ounces (1 can) evaporated milk
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 4-5 teaspoons of parsley, minced
- 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon of mustard, ground
- 1 teaspoon of nutmeg, ground
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, red
- Cook the bacon in a large pot until tender. Remove from the pot and set aside on a paper plate.
- Sautee the onion in bacon grease until tender. Remove the onions and set aside with the bacon.
- Pour the water on the pot and add the chicken cubes and potato chunks.
- Bring to boil and let simmer for 20 minutes until potato becomes tender.
- Add the carrots and let simmer until tender.
- Mix in all the other ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Stir well.
- Add the onions and bacon, and let simmer for another ten minutes or up until heat is balanced.
- Add more water if necessary, or milk if you want the consistency to be thicker.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
2. 7-Can Soup
If you have canned goods sitting at your kitchen cabinet, you might want to take them out for camping. The 7-can Soup is a warm and enjoyable dish with a rich texture and flavor. This recipe serves 6 people and only takes around 25 minutes to prepare.
- 1 can of corn (15.25 oz)
- 1 can of meaty chili (15 oz)
- 1 can of kidney beans (15 oz)
- 1 can of pinto beans (15 oz)
- 1 can of tomatoes, diced (15 oz)
- 1 can of tomatoes and green chili mix (10 oz)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 8 ounces of processed cheese
- Mix all the contents of each canned good (corn, chili, kidney beans, pinto beans, tomatoes, green chili) into a pot. Put over high heat.
- Bring to boil and then reduce heat.
- Let simmer for about 10-15 minutes to harmonize the flavors altogether.
- Add some pepper and salt to taste.
- Dice the processed cheese and put into the recipe until it melts.
- Serve hot.
3. Cabbage Chowder
The Cabbage Chowder is a creamy and really tasty soup that heats up any cold feeling away. This recipe makes two quarts good for 6-8 people, and can be cooked in just 20 minutes.
- 2 cups of carrots, sliced diagonally
- 2 pounds of ground beef, lean
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 1 large diced onion
- 1 tablespoon of garlic, minced
- 2 Bouillon cubes, beef
- 2 airtight bags of cabbage, shredded (14-16 oz)
- 10 ounces of ketchup
- 1 cup of brown sugar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Stir coarsely ground beef in heated oil on a pot.
- Put in the minced garlic and diced onion.
- Once the beef is cooked through (not pink in color anymore), add the water and bring to a boil. (Add about 4 cups of water, or more depending on your preference)
- Mix in the shredded cabbage.
- Cover the pot and let simmer until the cabbage is already tender.
- Put the ketchup and cup of sugar and mix.
- Put salt and pepper to taste.
- If necessary, add more water and season accordingly.
- Serve hot!
4. Peanut Butter Soup
Who even figured out that peanut butter can be made into a soup? This recipe uses a beloved kid’s confection to create a savory soup that is blasting with aroma and flavor. This is good for 8 servings and is cooked for a little over an hour to bring out its peanut-buttery goodness.
- 3 celery ribs, diced finely
- ½ stick of butter
- 1 medium finely diced onion
- 2 Buillion cubes of Chicken or 2 cartons of chicken broth
- 1 ½ cups of peanut butter, extra chunky
- 1 pint of half and half (milk and cream), 2 cups
- Chopped peanuts
- Salt and some hot sauce to taste
- Heat the butter and stir in the finely diced celery and onion until they are crisp and tender.
- Add in the broth (or mix bouillon with water) and mix the extra chunky peanut butter in.
- Cook on low heat and cover the pot until all the vegetables are tender.
- Pour in the half and half. Do not boil; just put it in enough heat instead.
- Add in salt and hot sauce to taste.
- Garnish the chopped peanuts on top and serve.
5. Campfire Chicken Vegetable Soup
Chicken soup is an all-time favorite, and this extends to the outdoor setting. Make colder mornings warmer and chilly nights toastier with the Campfire Chicken Vegetable Soup on your trip. Cooking time is 25 minutes and serves four people.
- 2 chopped chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- ½ chopped onion
- 2 chopped carrots
- 1 chopped celery stalk
- 1 cup of mushroom, sliced
- 1 pack of frozen vegetables mix
- 1 cup of tomato sauce
- 1 can of stewed tomatoes (14.5 oz)
- 5 cups of broth or 2 Bouillon cubes (add more if preferred)
- 1 cup of pasta shells
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Set aside all the chopped ingredients.
- On a large kettle pot, add in the chopped chicken breasts and cook thoroughly, then set aside.
- Add olive oil into the pot and sauté the celery, carrots and onions for 10 minutes.
- Mix in the mushrooms and cook until tender.
- Add in the frozen veggies, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce and the broth (or mix Bouillon with water and add to the pot).
- Bring the soup to a boil and simmer for about 15 minutes.
- Add in pasta shells and simmer for another 10 minutes, or up until the pasta is cooked al dente.
- Serve piping hot and enjoy!
Campfire soup is an enjoyable meal that is easily prepared when you also get the ingredients ready beforehand. Always make it a habit to measure, measure, measure so as not to leave any food waste. Also, make sure that you prioritize the nutritional value of the meal by using high-calorie ingredients to energize you on the hike or camp ahead.