Store Bought Items
Yes I know, homemade is always best – but not always realistic. Don’t judge yourself if you are rushing to get out on a trip and grab a tube of Pringles rather than packing fresh veggies or you pick up chocolate bars rather than packing homemade cookies. Tip: camp with someone who loves baking. My sister-in-law always brings homemade maple shortbread cookies. I must get her recipe to share. She packs them in milk cartons so they don’t get crushed. She offers us cookies we offer her a chocolate bar. Remember – no judging.
FYI – if you have a Metro near you, they have the best camping snacks.
We have been taking Pringles for years. We started taking them because they are protected in a tube. We would never eat them at home, but camping – YUM – they are just the right mix of salt and crunch. We have barrels now and don’t really need the chips in a tube, but we still bring at least one tube for old time sake. Never venture away from the original though. HOWEVER – if you can find the tortillas – buy them. Make a little fresh salsa on site and you will be in heaven. I have not found these in a long time but apparently they are still available. We pack nachos in a Ziplock now.
New addition – these were amazing. Picked up the cheese at Loblaws. First time with this wine. A bit of a splurge. Yummy. This cheese was so flavourful. We were thinking they would be great in a salad. We enjoyed them as an addition to a crackers and soup lunch.
Cheetos (which my sister-in-law calls ‘cheese-fries’)
These are great for a pack because they don’t break. We get the jalapeno because they taste good and help with portion control. However this year someone got us eating Hawkins ‘cheese fries’ because they are Canadian – made in Belleville Ontario. Some people in the group say they are better than Cheetos, but they are both good. Hawkins seem to have more salt and they are bigger.
Cadbury fruit and nut is a great bar to take. The Lindt is great if you are doing the trick with Peanut Butter Cookies.
This year we didn’t have time to make Grand Marnier Balls so we did the Ghirardelli brownie mix. (Big box from Costco). We add nuts (for nutrition). We cut them into pieces and wrapped them in waxed paper. It was delicious and travelled well! Our friend calls them “Giardia Brownies” – a little camping humour. Anyway, new trick this year – top the brownie with a toasted marshmallow. You will say that it is so rich you could only eat one, then you eat another.
We have tried all types of cheese in the past. Parmesan is great to take – the ‘refrigerate after opening’ stuff is perfect except the containers are usually too big. Baby Bell is the best because they keep a very long time in a barrel. We tried these Sonoma Jacks cheese, again they work great because they don’t need refrigeration and they are individually wrapped, but I couldn’t find them this year. Hard cheese that is vacuum sealed lightly keeps a long time. We also know people who just cut the mold off cheese but we are not interested in doing that. My brother-in-law tried dehydrating cheese and said “DON’T DO IT” because you will never eat cheese again. I guess a lot of oil comes out onto the trays. We also get brie and camembert in a box – no refrigeration needed. This year we got garlic and pepper – very Yummy. If you grow your own sprouts on a trip you can make sprout and cheese treats on a cracker.
We love the olives in a bag option, but we couldn’t find them this year. We my try vacuum sealing some ourselves.
We found these great nut snacks this year – Sahale. Expensive but we will buy them again! So great for a portage snack. We also pack mixed nuts for a snack. People often pack pistachios when they camp, I know this because the shells are left everywhere. Tossing them in the fire is a better option.
Tuna and Salmon
Another staple of our canoe trips are tetra packs of tuna. We couldn’t find them this year, but had some left over from last year. So easy to pack and no liquid to deal with on site. Great for crackers and wraps. We have just found smoked salmon. A nice change.
You can get bacon that doesn’t require refrigeration. (Try not to think about that too much.) As my husband says – it is so thin, you can cook it by just showing it the stove. If you only need a bit, buy the bacon that comes in small individual packs.
We always take wraps for a few lunches. If you take the white ones, we recommend opening them before the trip so you can put parchment paper or wax paper between each one. This will keep them from sticking together and ripping when you try to separate them. Whole wheat wraps don’t seem to stick as much.
Tip – bacon + sundried tomatoes and cheese in a wrap – very yummy!
Crackers, Salami and Jerky
There are just so many cracker options and we have tried many over the years. It is great to have crackers when you are having soup for lunch. One of our favorites is the Ace Bakery crackers. Bagel chips are pretty good too. Any harder cracker works. It is perfect if you had time to dehydrate a dip. Goes well with home made beef jerky. Of course you can also buy salami.
If you are going on a short trip peanut butter or almond butter is great to put in a container or tube. It really lasts a long time. When our dog was a pup he was too distracted to eat. We tried everything because we worried that with all the exercise he was getting he really needed to eat. My brother-in-law always marveled at this dog who was not interested in food. He is a unique dog – some would go as far as saying he is a weird dog! We started taking peanut butter and I would put some on my finger and actually rub it on his lips. We needed some way to help him realize he was hungry. It worked. I would put a few drops on his food and he would eat. We don’t need to do that anymore but we still take peanut butter for our cucumber and peanut butter wraps. Take the mini cucumbers, they last a long time and are easy to pack. We also pack dehydrated peanut butter for longer trips.
A few other things
Mini Peppers – These last a long time and they are easy to pack and make a great snack. Put them in a wrap or on a pizza – yum.
Dips – look for dips in the takeout area of the store or take a small bottle of salad dressing.
Belgian Waffles – individual packs – serve with fresh fruit, maple syrup and yogurt on the first morning – if you have a cooler.
Rice – Basmati Minute Rice in individual 2 serving packs – cooks in 10 minutes.
Coffee – Starbucks instant coffee to make on cool day.
Garlic – baked over the coals.
Pesto in a tube – this is great for pastas.
Of course you need to pack wine and perhaps Grand Marnier and Baileys.