I recently took a weekend camping trip to Green Lake, Wisconsin. It was a lovely trip and it was totally delightful to find that it was possible to make such a trip for just over $30. Green Lake is an idyllic lake town about 3 hours north of Chicago. It's an ideal spot if you are seeking a weekend of fishing, lake side picnics, meandering the streets of a small town, and refreshing lake swimming. There were also unexpected discoveries in Green Lake, like the Chapel Car Grace and "bed races" at the Green Lake Summer Solstice festival.
As I said, the trip was quite affordable, with expenses consisting of $12.50 per person for campsite fee at Hattie Sherwood Campgrounds, $8 per person for food (groceries purchased collectively), and $13 for gas from Chicago.
I was responsible for the meal planning and food purchase. I was proud of my thrifty grocery shopping and the delicious meals which resulted. If you are planning weekend car camping trip and looking for a simple delicious meals, I've included a menu that worked well below. We had limited cooking implements (tin foil, dutch oven pot, knife, cutting board, wooden spoon, and mixing bowl):
Tilapia cooking in a tin foil packet with sliced mushrooms, olive oil, salt and pepper with potatoes roasted in tin foil packet with olive oil, salt, and pepper. It is best to roast the fish and potatoes separately because the potatoes require additional cooking time. S'mores for dessert (no camping trip is complete with out them).
Red and orange bell peppers, tomatoes, and zucchini roasted in tin foil packet with olive oil, salt and pepper, served with penne. Orange cakes for dessert. I discovered the orange cake recipe at the Bread and Honey blog. It was wonderfully easy and delicious: simply make a box of white cake mix per the instructions. Cut off the end of oranges and scoop out the orange (the orange juice and fruit can be combined with red wine for a delightful sangria-like drink). Fill the orange shells approximately 1/2 full with cake mix, replace end of orange, cover with foil. Cook in campfire for 20-25 minutes.
Caprese sandwiches with pita chips. I have long loved the caprese sandwich and salad. These sandwiches make a very easy picnic or camp meal. Simply top a piece of nice bread with sliced tomato and fresh mozzarella, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. I added dried basil to the olive oil to simplify for camping, but, of course, fresh basil is better!
Oatmeal topped with walnuts, dried cranberries, and brown sugar. Oatmeal is an easy hearty breakfast to make over the campfire. Toppings (use your imagination fresh bananas would be fantastic with brown sugar) make oatmeal a fantastic start to the day.
What are your favorite camping meals?