When it comes to prepping for any sort of camping trip, planning your meals can be a difficult step. You need to figure out where you’re staying and which cooking sources you’ll have access to, whether it’s a gas stove, an electric cooktop, or a good old-fashioned campfire. While hot dogs and hamburgers are always authentic camping classics, it’s nice to indulge in other treats that are fun to create and just as easy to devour. For many campers, pizza perfectly fits the bill — it’s versatile, cheap, and almost impossible to mess up. Without further ado, here’s a guide to help you make a delicious pizza pie during your camping trip, regardless of the cooking sources you’re limited to.
First, a quick note — instead of having to mix together flour, yeast, and a bunch of other messy ingredients during your trip, consider preparing your pizza dough at home for maximum convenience. You won’t have to wait for it to rise, and chances are you won’t have access to an electric mixer on your trip, so it makes sense to keep it simple and prepare the essentials at home. If you’re especially strapped for time, just grab some pre-made dough that comes compressed in a can, so that all you have to do is roll it out and load it up with toppings.
Speaking of toppings — if you don’t want to pack your cutting board and fully intact toppings, consider slicing and dicing them at home as well. Then, you can simply bring them along and top to your heart’s desire. But be mindful of how you package your prepared ingredients as well as how you dispose of their packaging — today the world makes and consumes about 600 billion pounds of plastic yearly, and other alternatives, such as mason jars, can often keep food fresher and are much more sustainable.
You should also remember to consider the nutritional value of your chosen ingredients — if you plan on doing a lot of hiking or exploring, you need to take care of yourself and prepare protein-packed ingredients to keep your energy up in addition to getting your standard seven to nine hours of sleep.
If you’re staying in a cabin that will have electricity, using an induction cooktop is often the quickest and easiest way to make your pizza. The basic principles of induction heating have been applied to manufacturing since the 1920s, but when used for cooking, induction provides consistent heating and pizza perfection. However, this cooking method also works well for traditional stovetops and cast iron skillets.
First, lay the dough in an even layer across the pan. Let it cook by itself for a few minutes, then flip it over and toast the other side. Then, top it with sauce, cheese, and any combination of toppings, cover it for just a few minutes to let the cheese melt and cook the toppings. Finally, uncover it to release any steam and keep it from getting soggy, let it cool, and dig in!
There’s definitely more than one way to cook a pizza using a campfire, but this unique method from ShockMunch may take the cake — or rather, the pie. Plus, virtually all of the prep work for this recipe is completed beforehand, so essentially all you’ll have to do is cook it.
Before your trip lay out the pizza dough and prepare it as you would if you were going to bake it right at home: spread the sauce, sprinkle the cheese, and add your toppings. Then, roll it up neatly into a shape resembling a stromboli, or as ShockMunch calls it, a ‘camping pizza log.’ Pinch the ends together to prevent sauce and cheese leakage and let no deliciousness go to waste. Then, wrap the entire thing in foil and freeze it.
Remove your pizza log from the freezer the day you embark on your trip, and put it in a cooler to help keep your other food items cool. Once dinner time rolls around and you’ve had your campfire burning long enough to build up a bed of glowing embers, drop your pizza log right on top of the coals and cook it for 25 to 30 minutes, rotating every so often to ensure even heating. Finally, remove it from the fire, and as always, let it cool before digging in!
Coming up with creative ideas for camping-based recipes isn’t always easy, but it’s certainly fun to experiment, especially when they’re as universally enjoyed as pizza. If you’re yearning for something truly out of the ordinary, consider experimenting with various base sauces, such as barbecue or honey garlic. Americans consume about 1.3 pounds of honey per person per year, and when combined with the savory flavors of garlic, it can truly bring any pizza to life.
What are your favorite camping recipes, and how do you make them unique? Tell us in the comments!