Beyond Franks and Patties: How To Cook Over a Campfire

Beyond Franks and Patties: How To Cook Over a Campfire

I grew up as the daughter of a geologist. Every summer involved multiple camping trips as my dad went about studying and admiring the earth. Nowadays, my dad is a professor of geology and spends 6 weeks every summer taking students camping. I am no stranger to campfire cooking. Keep reading for some tricks of the trade!

Hot dogs and s’mores may be the traditional campfire fare, but as a foodie I shudder at the thought of being stuck with that menu for 6 weeks. Okay, so maybe I shudder more at the thought of being stuck camping for 6 weeks. I love a good camping trip, but 6 weeks? Not for this girl. 

So what’s my secret to maintaining my foodie status while cooking over a campfire? All you need is a dutch oven, and a grate to go over the fire. Boom. You’ve got yourself a kitchen. The skill is all in the heat management. Heat management takes practice, but as long as you avoid contact with direct flames, you will probably be off to a good start. 

What are my favorite campfire recipes? Here’s an important secret: you don’t need a campfire recipe. Any recipe that would work on your backyard grill will work on a grate over the fire. And almost any slow-cooker recipe will work in a Dutch oven. Just make sure to keep the heat around 200 degrees, which is the temperature a slow-cooker cooks at. 

While I don’t recommend trying to making temperamental recipes like French macarons in the wild, most dinners you’d normally eat at home are fair game. From enchiladas and casseroles, to chicken and pasta. You can even make pizza over a campfire. The possibilities are endless! 

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