Camp Cuisine

Camp Cuisine - Camping Recipes

Inspire your inner camp chef with recipes for camping trips.  It doesn’t matter if it’s shared around a campfire, cooked in your RV's gourmet kitchen, or take-out from the local deli, food just tastes better on a camping vacation!
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Wildflower Recipes

Wildflowers are beautiful to look at, but did you know that they can also wake up your taste buds?  A number of these lovely buds and flowers are edible, and their colorful presence adds a touch of whimsy to any dish.  Try these recipes for a foray into flower eating, then branch out on your own.  Just remember - not every flower is edible, so stick to standards like nasturtiums, violets, and pansies.

You should never eat flowers or other plant parts unless you're 100% sure of their identification.  Also, in case you might be allergic to a particular flower, take care to never eat too much of the bloom at one time.  Organically grown flowers are always the best, so it's smartest to use flowers from your own yard or to buy edible flowers from the grocery store or farmer's market.

Nasturtium Salad
Colorful nasturtiums have a slightly peppery taste and make a great addition to fresh dishes like green salads.  Try this salad in the springtime when baby greens are in the market.

Serves: 4 - 6


6-8 cups mixed salad greens.  For more color, include a variety of dark and light greens and some red cabbage or raddichio leaves.
..5 cup fresh basil
2 t thyme with flowers
8 small nasturtium blossoms
..5 cup untoasted cashews
..25 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
..5 t mustard powder
1 t honey
salt and pepper to taste

Wash the greens and spin them dry. Place greens in a large bowl and add basil, thyme, nasturtiums, and cashews. In a jar (with a lid), shake the olive oil, lemon juice, mustard powder, and honey until well mixed.  Dress the salad and season with salt and pepper. 

Violet Mango Salad
The pretty, purple members of the viola family (violets, violas, and pansies) are some of the most popular edible flowers.  These bright blooms are easy to grow and taste delicious.  They work well in salads and fresh dishes, and also make a nice addition to desserts like cakes and pies.  Sugared violets are particularly lovely on desserts.

Important note: African violets are not part of the viola family.  Do NOT eat them.  African violets are wholly different and can never be substituted for violets or pansies in recipes.
1/4 c violet leaves, washed and spun dry
1 t olive oil
1 t balsamic vinegar
1 ripe mango, peeled and cut into chunks
8 violets, stemmed, rinsed, and patted dry
salt and pepper to taste
1 t thyme
1 t honey

In a jar, shake together the oil, vinegar, honey, thyme, and salt and pepper.  Toss the violet leaves with the dressing and arrange salad in bowls.  The violet petals are delicate, so it's best not to toss them with the dressing.  Instead, reserve a little to drizzle over the top when your salad is completely arranged.  
  • A Better Burger Bash

    There’s nothing better than getting a group of friends together to grill up a bunch of burgers. Here are a few ideas to spark your inner chef. Get creative with a typical ground sirloin burger by using unusual ingredients and flavors. Or you can change it up with turkey burgers or crab cake burgers. Add a few easy-to-assemble or store-bought side dishes, and you’ve got the perfect recipe for your next get-together.

    Stuffed Pesto Turkey Bacon Burgers
    PREP: 10 MIN., GRILL: 12 MIN.

    1 lb. lean ground white-meat turkey
    ¼ cup bottled basil pesto sauce (or choose your favorite)
    4 oz. feta cheese
    a dash (or more) of hot sauce like Tabasco™
    12 precooked bacon slices
    4 toasted Italian rolls
    Shredded spinach leaves
    Tomato slices
    1. Make 8 thin turkey burger patties.
    2. Combine next 3 ingredients in a large bowl until just blended.
    3. Spread cheese and pesto mixture on 4 of the turkey burger patties
    4. Top each with a remaining turkey burger patty and press edges together to seal in stuffing
    5. Wrap pre-cooked bacon slices in a single layer tin foil
    6. Grill turkey burgers and foil-wrapped bacon on a covered grill over medium-high heat (350° to 400°). Grill for 5 to 6 minutes on each side or until done.
    7. Place turkey burgers on Italian roll and top evenly with spinach, tomato, and bacon slices, and cover with roll tops.
    Make it a meal with easy side dishes and dessert:
    • Greek Salad
      Pre-packaged spinach salad topped with black olives, crumbled feta, chopped red onion, pine nuts, and dressed with bottled Greek dressing
    • Balsamic Berries
      Wash and top a pint of strawberries. Marinate them in balsamic vinegar and brown sugar in refrigerator 1 – 4 hours. Serve with ready-made whipped cream topping; over vanilla ice cream; or in the traditional style with sour cream.

    Black and Blue Burgers
    PREP 10 MIN., GRILL: 12 MIN.

    1 1⁄2 lb. ground sirloin
    2 Tbsp. stone ground mustard
    1 Tbsp. dried Italian seasonings
    4 oz. blue or gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
    4 Tbsp. (or to taste) ground peppercorn mix - preferably black, green and pink, though black peppercorns will do
    Toppings: romaine lettuce, tomato slices
    1. Combine ground sirloin, mustard, blue cheese, and Italian seasonings; shape into 4 patties.
    2. Press burgers in peppercorns to coat
    3. Grill on a covered grill over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) for 5 to 6 minutes on each side or until no longer pink in center.
    4. Serve on buns with lettuce and tomato.
    Make it a meal with easy side dishes and dessert:
    • Blue cheese potato chips
      Spread a bag of thick cut kettle style salt-and-vinegar potato chips on a piece of stick-resistant tin foil and top with crumbled blue cheese to taste. Heat on the grill until blue cheese bubbles. Add chopped garlic for a pungent twist.
    • Watermelon with a squeeze of lime.
      For an adults-only treat, drizzle with lemon vodka and a dash of salt.

    Island Fever Crab Cake Burgers
    PREP: 10 MIN., GRILL: 20 - 30 MIN.

    4 frozen crab cakes
    4 thick slices of Maui or Vidalia onions
    1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
    4 oz. of brie, rind removed
    4 Tbsp. Earth & Vine™ Kiwi Pineapple Jalapeno Fruit Spread or other tropical fruit spread
    4 oz. pre-packaged angel-hair coleslaw
    2 tsp. (or more to taste) favorite bottle poppy seed dressing
    4 Hawaiian rolls
    1. Place crab cakes on stick-resistant tin foil and grill over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) with grill lid closed for 10 – 12 minutes on each side.
    2. Brush Vidalia or Maui onions with EVOO and grill on grates, covered with stick-resistant tin foil for 3 -4 minutes, each side.
    3. Remove rind from brie (this is easiest if the brie has been placed in the freeze for 30 minutes or an hour in advance)
    4. Mix angel-hair coleslaw with poppy seed dressing and top bottom half of each Hawaiian roll with 1 ounce.
    5. Spread 1 ounce of Tropical Fruit Spread on inside top of each Hawaiian roll
    6. Place 1 ounce of brie on each crab cake during the last minute of cooking to soften and begin to melt.
    7. Place a brie-covered crab cake on top of each coleslaw-topped Hawaiian Roll and cover with roll tops.
    Make it a meal with easy sides and dessert:
    • Quick Candied Island Yams
      Mash a can of yams (in syrup, but with most of the syrup poured off) with a really ripe banana, a small can of pineapple (drained), and brown sugar to taste. If it’s adults only, add a splash or more of Amaretto. Pour mixture into a glass ovenproof casserole dish, topped with dried coconut, and heat on grill along side crab cakes. Alternately, pop it into a microwave for 3-4 minutes, 1 minute at a time until heated through (time varies depending on microwave). If you must, you can also top with tiny marshmallows.
    • Grilled pineapple packets
      Brush pineapple with EVOO and a spoonful of the tropical jam used for the crab cakes. Grill pineapple on stick-resistant foil until pineapple is tender and the juices are caramelizing. Top with a sprinkling of Demerara sugar (or other coarse sugar) and, if you have it handy, candied ginger.

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    Throw a Mardi Gras Party

    As they say in New Orleans, Laissez le bon temps rouler, Cajun for "Let the good times roll!"

    Mardi Gras means fat Tuesday and is the final day of the season between Christmas and Lent. Mardi Gras is the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday - the first day of Lent a period that many cultures traditionally give up favorite foods and alcohol in preparation for Easter. Fat Tuesday is a last chance party excuse before a six-week period of abstinence.

    Mardi Gras Party ideas:
    Grab some decorations in Mardi Gras colors of gold, green and purple representing the virtues of power, faith and justice. Hang streamers wrapped with christmas lights. Buy bags of gold doubloons and plastic beaded necklaces and fill large bowls with the typical booty thrown from floats at Mardi Gras parades.

    Food - Easy Recipes:
    Creole and Cajun foods are favorites for Mardi Gras parties.


    Boiled Shrimp or Crawfish
    Seafood Gumbo
    Loaves of French Bread
    Red Beans and Rice
    King Cake


    Boiled Shrimp or Crawfish
    * 12 pounds live crawfish
    * 8 quarts water
    * 1 package (1 pound) Zatarain's® Crawfish, Shrimp & Crab Boil
    * 1 large onion, peeled
    * 1 head garlic, halved crosswise
    * 1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes
    * 6 ears corn, shucked and halved crosswise

    1. Pour live crawfish into a washtub or ice chest; cover with water. Drain. Repeat 3 to 4 times until crawfish are clean. Drain. Discard any dead crawfish and debris.

    2. Mix 8 quarts water, Crab Boil, onion and garlic in large (20-quart) stockpot. Bring to boil on high heat; boil 5 minutes. Add potatoes; boil 5 minutes. Add crawfish and corn; return to boil. Cover and cook 2 minutes.

    3. Turn off heat and let stand 20 minutes. Add about 6 to 8 cups ice to stockpot; let stand 20 minutes to cool. Drain and serve.

    Seafood Gumbo
    * 1 cup vegetable oil
    * 1 cup flour
    * 2 cups chopped onions
    * 8 ribs celery, chopped
    * 3 cloves garlic, minced
    * 8 cups chicken broth, canned or from base
    * 2 large cans (28 ounces each) tomatoes, diced
    * 2 packages (10 ounces each) frozen okra, sliced, thawed
    * 1 pound crab claws
    * 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
    * 1 tablespoon hot sauce
    * 2 large dried bay leaves
    * 1/2 cup fresh minced parsley
    * 2 teaspoons dried leaf thyme
    * 2 teaspoons dried leaf basil
    * 2 teaspoons dried leaf oregano
    * 1 teaspoon sage
    * 1 teaspoon pepper
    * 2 pounds shrimp, medium, unpeeled
    * 1 quart oysters, undrained, optional
    * 1 pound crab meat
    * 1 pound fish fillets, such as catfish or other firm white fish, cut in 1-inch pieces
    * hot cooked rice
    * file powder, optional

    Combine oil and flour in a heavy skillet; cook over medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring constantly, until roux is dark. Be very careful to keep the roux from scorching. Stir in onion, celery, and garlic; cook 10 minutes, stirring often. Transfer mixture to a Dutch oven or large kettle. Add chicken broth, tomatoes, okra, crab claws, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, bay leaves, parsley, thyme, basil, oregano, sage, and pepper; simmer 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

    Peel and devein shrimp. Add shrimp, oysters, crab meat, and fish to the pot; simmer 10 to 15 minutes. Remove and discard bay leaves. Serve gumbo over hot cooked rice and, if desired, sprinkle with file.

    * 1 broiler chicken, cut up, about 3 pounds
    * paprika
    * 3 tablespoons olive oil
    * 1 cup chopped onion
    * 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
    * 2 ribs celery, chopped
    * 2 cloves garlic, minced
    * 1/2 cup diced cooked ham
    * 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) stewed tomatoes
    * 2 cups chicken broth
    * 1 cup long-grain rice
    * 2 teaspoons leaf thyme, crumbled
    * 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
    * 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    * 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (Tabasco)
    * 1 pound shrimp, shelled and deveined

    Wash chicken and pat dry; rub with the paprika. Heat olive oil in a large skillet; add chicken and brown on all sides. Remove chicken from skillet. Add onion, green bell pepper, celery, and garlic. Sauté over low heat until onion is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in ham, tomatoes, chicken broth, rice, thyme, salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Add chicken and turn to coat with sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minute, or until chicken is tender. Stir in shrimp and cook about 3 minutes longer, or just until shrimp turns pink.

    Red Beans and Rice
    * 2 cups water
    * 1 cup uncooked rice
    * 1 (16 ounce) package turkey kielbasa, cut diagonally into 1/4 inch slices
    * 1 onion, chopped
    * 1 green bell pepper, chopped
    * 1 clove chopped garlic
    * 2 (15 ounce) cans canned kidney beans, drained
    * 1 (16 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, chopped
    * 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    * salt to taste
    * 1/2 teaspoon pepper

    1. In a saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add rice and stir. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

    2. In a large skillet over low heat, cook sausage for 5 minutes. Stir in onion, green pepper and garlic; saute until tender. Pour in beans and tomatoes with juice. Season with oregano, salt and pepper. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. Serve over rice.

    King Cake history and tradition
    No Mardi Gras celebration is complete without a King Cake. This cake is actually a sweetened yeast bread, usually baked in a ring shape. The cake is frosted with gold, green, and purple icing representing in order, power, faith, and justice. Although this cake is colorful and tasty, the real fun hides within the cake.

    The maker of each King Cake hides a token in the cake. The tokens used are a dried red bean or a figurine of a baby, representing the Christ child. When the cake is cut and shared, the finder of the hidden treasure is said to enjoy good luck for the coming year. The lucky recipient may also be expected to bake the King Cake or throw the Mardi Gras party for the following year.

    King Cake Recipe
    * 1 envelope active dry yeast
    * 1/4 cup warm water, about 105 to 115 degrees
    * 2 tablespoons milk, scalded and cooled
    * 4 to 5 cups flour
    * 8 ounces butter
    * 3/4 cup sugar
    * 1/4 teaspoon salt
    * 4 eggs
    * 2 teaspoons melted butter
    * very small plastic doll, a large bean, or coin
    * light corn syrup for topping
    * granulated sugar colored with food coloring pastes: green, purple, and yellow

    Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add milk and about 1/2 cup of flour. In a large bowl, blend butter, sugar, salt and eggs. Add yeast mixture and mix thoroughly. Gradually, add 2 1/2 cups flour to make a medium dough.

    Place in a greased bowl and brush with melted butter. Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise until double in volume, about 3 hours. Use 1 cup or more flour to knead dough and roll into a 4 to 5 foot long rope. Form into a oval on a 14 x 17" greased baking sheet, connecting ends of the rope with a few drops of water to make a good seal.

    Press the doll, bean, or coin into the dough from bottom. Cover dough ring with a damp cloth and let rise until double in volume, about 1 hour. Bake at 325° for 35 to 45 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Brush top of cake with corn syrup and sprinkle with alternating bands of colored sugar. If desired, freeze cake.

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