Dine Deliciously in the Great Outdoors with Our Best Camping Recipes

group of people sitting around campfire roasting marshmallows
Photo: Tara Donne

Rekindle your love of campfire cooking with recipes that are equal parts fun and sophisticated.

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group of people sitting around campfire roasting marshmallows
Tara Donne

It is a truth universally acknowledged that food tastes better in the outdoors—preferably after a day of hiking, swimming, fishing, canoeing, and exploring. Still, we can do way better than canned chili, granola bars, and burnt hot dogs. The most important ingredient in good campfire meals is planning. Once your tent is pitched, there's no running back home for the butter or the aluminum foil you forgot, and no app for ordering a pizza to the middle of the woods when you fail to catch enough trout for supper. But we think that the planning is part of the fun, so roll up your sleeves and get ready to make some lists so no skillet is left behind.

When deciding what you're going to cook during a camping trip, think carefully about refrigeration and cook times. The more ingredients that don't need to be kept cold, the better. This includes foods that come in cans and pouches (like beans, lentils, tuna, and tomato sauce), as well as most fruits and vegetables, dry-cured sausages, hard cheeses, breads, crackers, and grains. When it comes to cook times, consider how much fuel—and how much patience—you have. Choose quick-cooking pastas like angel hair, orzo, and couscous, and go for instant versions of grains like oatmeal, grits, and polenta. Take advantage of the hot coals around the edges of your campfire to foil-wrap root vegetables and let them cook slowly and steadily while you prep the rest of dinner.

Check out this collection of camping recipes that are equal parts fun and sophisticated to spark your love of cooking in the great outdoors.

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Campfire Breakfast Hash

gregs campfire breakfast hash
Con Poulos

Wake up in a forest and enjoy the smells and flavors of this breakfast hash recipe made with eggs, potatoes, bell peppers, and chorizo, which you can cook over a campfire.

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homemade marshmallows
Hugh Stewart

Learn how to make this classic camping recipe with just three ingredients—graham crackers, marshmallows, and milk chocolate bars.

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Classic Burger-Joint Cheeseburger

burger lettuce tomato pickle cheese
Armando Rafael

Upgrade a basic campfire burger with an epic display of toppings: American cheese, thick tomato slices, dill pickles, lettuce, and ketchup.

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Grilled Hot Dogs with Sweet-Hot Relish

hot dogs
Johnny Miller

Take campfire franks to the next level by topping them with relish that you can make in advance at home using cornichons, thinly sliced onions, and sweet-hot red peppers. This is a camping-friendly recipe that feels entirely elevated.

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Grilled Bread and Chiles with Burrata

grilled bread and chiles with burrata placed on an outdoor picnic table
Elizabeth Cecil

Enjoy the great outdoors with this extra-special appetizer that tastes best over a fire. Serve grilled bread with mixed chile peppers and burrata. Just be sure to keep the cheese chilled in a cooler.

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Grilled Whole Fish with Lemon and Thyme

grilled whole fish lemon thyme
Paola + Murray

If you're planning to catch a fish while you're camping, follow this light and bright recipe using just a few basic ingredients to build flavor. Lemons, fresh thyme, and oil are all you'll need to create a memorable main dish.

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On-The-Go Trail Mix


Going for a long hike? Pack individual bags of this trail mix, which you can make in advance using dried fruit, pecans, and candy-coated chocolate pieces.

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Grilled Mixed-Vegetable Salad

Grilled Mixed-Vegetable Salad
David Tsay

Gather an assortment of mixed vegetables—whatever is in season—and grill them over a smoky campfire. Prep them at home so you don't need to worry about carrying a vegetable peeler or cutting board with you.

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Green-Chile Chicken Burgers

Bryan Gardner

This is no ordinary campfire burger. Ground chicken is mixed with two cans of diced green chiles and ground cumin for these spicy patties that you can cook in the woods.

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Campfire Potatoes

potato over the fire
Harlan Schwartz / Getty Images

Serve this spectacular side dish while camping in the woods. Baby potatoes are tossed with oil, garlic, and herbs, then wrapped in a foil packet and cooked over a campfire until tender.

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Campfire Fried Eggs with Potato-and-Bacon Hash

Campfire Fried Eggs with Potato-and-Bacon Hash
Tara Donne

Cook the quintessential campfire breakfast: eggs and potato hash fried in bacon drippings. Brew a fresh pot of coffee directly over the fire to complete this robust meal to start the day.

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No-Cook Overnight Oats

overnight oats
Bryan Gardner

Mix and match dried fruit, nuts, and spices to suit every palate with this super-easy oatmeal that's ready even before the campfire's lit. Make it with shelf-stable UHT, nut, soy, rice, or oat milk and you won't even need to worry about keeping it in the cooler.

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Corn and Scallion Chilaquiles


Take advantage of leftover vegetables from dinner to make this sunny breakfast scramble. The eggs and tortilla chips are must-haves; the rest of the ingredients can be improvised based on what you have.

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Skillet Breads with Grilled Sausages

skillet bread

After being "baked" in a skillet, these breads can be split for a sandwich, tossed in a salad, or skewered for dessert. Make a double batch if you plan on sampling all of the above. The dry ingredients can be combined at home. Serve them with sizzling Sausages and Charred Tomato Relish.

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Soupy Black Beans

soupy black beans

This hearty family meal starts with two cans of black beans and a jar of salsa. A little simmering and a few finishing touches and dinner is ready.

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Cold Peanut Noodles

Cold Peanut soba Noodles

A few shelf-stable ingredients like peanut butter, sesame oil, and chili-garlic paste transform into a dynamite sauce that tastes good on just about everything—no cooking required. Speed up dinner by swapping out the spaghetti in this recipe for rice noodles, which only need to be soaked in hot water.

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Campfire Chicken Under a Brick with Lemons


You don't need an oven to roast a chicken. Flattening the bird with a brick and cooking it in a skillet achieves a "roasted" finish. Serve it with Grilled-Bread Panzanella made from leftover Skillet Breads.

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Red Bean Burgers

Alpha Smoot

A couple cans of black beans and some carrots are so much easier to manage on a camping trip than a pound of ground beef! These tasty veggie burgers will satisfy all your hungry bears.

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One-Pan Pasta

Marcus Nilsson

Just nine minutes of simmering and you have a complete meal like nothing you've ever eaten in the woods before. Best of all, none of the ingredients need refrigeration!

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Buttered Corn with Chives

buttered corn in foil

Grilling corn in foil packets seals in moisture for a tasty, tender side hot off the fire. Plus, you won't have to wash a single dish.

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Skillet-Cooked Mixed-Berry Grunt

berry grunt
Tara Donne

A grunt, sometimes called a slump, is a classic American skillet dessert combining fruit stew and a fluffy dough topping. Whether you're plucking berries at your campsite or at the farm stand, this is a great way to put a variety of the juicy gems to use.

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Cherry-Orange Bourbon

cherry-orange bourbon
Emily Kate Roemer

Fruit-infused whiskey tastes twice as sweet when sipped around a campfire. Make and strain this concoction ahead of time, then enjoy at your campsite for the ultimate evening under the stars.

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