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Who doesn’t like camping, honestly? I mean, what’s not to like – open skies, friends, and family, a campfire, lots of delicious food and good times will happen. If you like spending time in nature then you will take a chance to go to camping whenever one arises because there’s nothing quite like the feeling of sitting close to a fire on a chilly night with nothing around you but silence and sparks.

However, camping isn’t just romantic and beautiful, there’s a lot of work to be done, though that’s part of the fun. You need to know your way around pitching a tent, how to light a fire and keep it going throughout the night and let’s not forget about delicious camping food. If you want to cook something warm and hearty, here are some suggestions that might come in handy to warm up your chilly campsite.

Lakeside camping with a sunset

Potato Bowls with a Twist

I love potatoes in every shape and form known to humankind, which is why bringing some whenever I go camping is a must. Since everybody loves potatoes, there’s really no limit to how you can prepare them and your camp buddies will be delighted. You can go for a classic option of poking potatoes all over with a fork, smearing butter all over them generously, wrapping them tightly in aluminum foil and burying them in hot coals. They should be ready to eat in about an hour and you can serve them up with some salt and butter or you can make it more interesting with a delicious twist.

Cut off the top of the potato and with a spoon take out the middle so that you create a bowl and do so with every potato (make sure you buy big ones). Put a bit of butter into each bowl, break an egg into it and top it all off with some bacon and cheese. Set it over your fire and let it cook until you see the egg is done. Serve and observe others enjoy the goodness you’ve created.

Hot Chocolate for Everyone!

Girl wearing mittens holding a cup of hot chocolate

You just can’t go camping without drinking hot chocolate in the middle of the night, it would be blasphemy. That’s why it would be wise to bring plenty of hot chocolate mix with you because people will always want more of it. When you get settled in your camp and the fire is crackling, put a grate over your campfire and warm your milk. Add your mix immediately and let your hot chocolate get thicker and warmer, but don’t get it to boil. After that, you’re free to pour generous amounts of chocolaty deliciousness into cups, top it with a mountain of mini marshmallows and take a sip. Chances are you will taste perfection.

Camping Mac ’n’ Cheese

This is another hit for me because it’s ridiculously easy to make and you can prepare it at home, just so that you can reheat it once you set up your campsite. It might not be the healthiest of meals, and you’ll probably need to drink a lot of fresh water afterward, but hell, it’s worth it. You don’t have to do it from scratch either, you can pre-cook the pasta at home, mix it up with some Alfredo sauce and just enough cheese so that it doesn’t get dry and icky. Put your half-made mac ‘n’ cheese into aluminum pie tins and pack them as tightly as you can. When you get to your campsite and everybody’s ready for some dinner, just whip out the tins, put a lot of cheese on top and let your mac ‘n’ cheese get all warm, melted and gooey. It’s safe to say that most people would be happy with this meal anytime, especially when they spend a whole day in nature and are famished.

S’mores Cones

S'mores in a cone
S’mores in a cone by NPS Photo/M. Reed

We all know how s’mores have an irreplaceable spot in every camping experience, but we also know how messy they can be. This hack with using waffle cones instead of graham crackers I’ve picked up a couple of years ago and I can honestly say I love it, though it’s quite addictive. The process here is quite simple – have your cones, marshmallows and chocolate chips at the ready as the time for dessert approaches and then simply fill up the cone with all the goodies. After that, wrap the cones in aluminum foil and let them sit on a grate over the fire for up to ten minutes. In that time, the contents of the cones will melt and hot, so that you can eat them like a hot ice cream, just be careful not to get burned.

Camping is an excellent time to unwind on every level, not worry about everyday troubles, calorie counting or the bills. Making good hearty food will make your camping memories even better and you’ll always want to come back for more. – Harris Norman

Author Bio

Profile Picture of Harris NormanHarris Norman is a 35-year-old fitness instructor, born and raised in San Francisco Bay Area. Harris is also very passionate about spending time in nature, which is why he spends all of his free time hiking, sailing and mountain climbing. His survival skills are admirable, which is why he’s got a special place among the writers of http://www.prosurvivalist.com/. When he’s not running around chasing adventure, he likes to play trombone, though not very well.