Food for camping trips requires some planning and preparation. Getting together all the necessary ingredients, snacks and cooking gear is important so everything is ready when you get to your destination. When you are packing your refrigerated food in coolers, make sure to pack them correctly to maintain freshness for your entire trip.
There is an art when it comes to freezing food. Freezing helps preserve food for a longer period of time, especially meats and prepackaged vegetables. When you are preparing to leave on your camping trip, store your frozen meats and vegetables on ice in a cooler. You can also substitute regular ice for dry ice as it keeps foods frozen for longer periods of time. Just make sure to take proper precautions when handling dry ice.
For longer camping trips, bring three coolers, with each containing specific food items. One cooler will contain the frozen meats and other food that is to be cooked. The second cooler can be packed with snack food items and beverages. And bring along a third cooler for leftovers if you expect to have any. This idea of having several coolers keeps raw food from contaminating snack food, ready-to-eat food and beverages. It also prevents continuous opening of the cooler containing frozen food, keeping it frozen longer and less likely to spoil.
When it comes to planning out meals and snacks, it’s important to consider how long items will last. Any dairy, meat and produce will not last as long as crackers and trail mix, so those perishable items should be consumed first. If you find it easier to precook meat before leaving on your camping trip, that is fine and cooked meat will actually last longer than raw. You can boil it or just go ahead and apply a dry rub or marinade before leaving on your trip.
When you are preparing your camping area, make sure to keep food out of the sunlight. Keep it in the shade to allow the food to stay fresh longer and prevent spoiling.