Tips and Tricks for Camping Food Preparation
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Tips and Tricks for Camping Food Preparation

Camping with your family can be a lot of fun! However, when it comes to preparing meals it's often one of the most challenging parts of planning any camping trip. To ensure your trip to JELLYSTONE PARK™ is off to a great start, here are few things to keep in mind while prepping meals. Cooking while camping doesn't need to be an overwhelming part of the process, so we're here to make it easy! Read on to learn how you can get the most out of cooking while camping.

Equipment

Whether you use an open fire, propane grill, or on a cast-iron pot, you'll first want to find out what your campsite or cabin offers in terms of food preparation amenities. With over 450 campsites and 75 different cabins to choose from at YOGI BEAR’S JELLYSTONE PARK™, there is bound to be a campsite that fits your needs. Regardless of where prep your meals, there will be a few essentials you'll need to bring. These include extra-long tongs (especially if you'll cook over an open fire), fire starters, extra-long lighters, pots, pans, aluminum foil, paper towels, and potholders.

Plan, Plan, Plan!

Knowing what you’re going to eat at each meal and preparing as many ingredients as possible beforehand will give you a better opportunity to explore our Louisiana campground, not spend your trip prepping meals. First, come up with a meal plan for every day of your trip—including snacks. Then, break down these meals into two separate lists: a shopping list and a "prep list." Your prep list should include amounts of spices and ingredients needed for the meals you want to prepare. Next, use your prep list to pre-chop any veggies or fruits needed for your meals, and measure out spices into small containers for easy packing. For fun and easy meal prep, consider using a crock-pot! Whether you decide to bring your crock-pot with you or store pre-made meals in plastic bags to be heated up later, these popular-style meals are great while camping! Need some crock-pot camping meal ideas? Check out this list of recipes.

Storage

Properly storing your food may not be the most glamours thing about getting ready for a camping trip, but it's definitely one of the most important parts in order to keep your food fresh. Keep in mind that refrigerated foods are safest when stored under 41 degrees, while frozen foods should be stored at zero degrees. The first step to make sure your cold food stays cold is to have a good quality cooler that is filled with plenty of ice and cold packs. Consider freezing most of your foods before you leave so they’ll stay colder for longer, or freeze gallon jugs of water and/or plastic bags and place them in the cooler to help keep other foods cold. Make sure the cooler remains shut after each use so cold air doesn't escape. Cold foods aren’t the only things that need to be properly stored in order to maintain freshness—don't neglect your dry foods! Keep all dry goods in a large, sealed container that will protect food from water or animals. Use alligator clips on open bags of chips and snacks to ensure they won’t go stale. Also, never leave food sitting out!

Cooking Made Easy at Jellystone Park

At our camp-resort in Robert, Louisiana, we want to take the stress out of planning for your camping trip. That's why we offer several ways to help you with all your food preparation needs! The Ranger Station, located at the front of the park, is our own convenience store that is stocked full with many of those easy-to-forget items. Don't want to spend your trip cooking over an open fire? Then Cindy's 19th Hole is for you! This snack bar serves delicious treats like snowballs, nachos, and soft drinks as well as full meals like hamburgers and hot dogs. Stop by Cindy's 19th Hole every weekend from March through November, and weekdays during the summer. In addition, the Rec Center serves up snacks like Slush Puppies, popcorn, and soda throughout the day.

Food preparation while camping doesn’t need to be complicated. Simply follow these tips and you're on your way to becoming a camping-chef extraordinaire! For more food prep tips, check out this article. Ready to reserve your stay at Jellystone Park? Book your campsite now!

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