Heading to the woods for a weekend of camping no longer means that you have to eat hotdogs and chips while you sit on a log. Instead, with the right gear and recipes, your dining experience can become so much more. Here's how to take your usual camping meal to the next level: a glamping meal.
- Set the Mood With Music
If you don't have a friend who can serenade the group with their guitar, opt for the next best thing: portable speakers. Look for ones that are waterproof, shockproof, and dustproof; make sure that they easily connect to an iPod or iPhone via a USB port or Bluetooth as well.
- Use a Camping Cook Set
Sure, you can bring mishmash of random cups and plates, haul in a couple of pots and pans from your kitchen, and still make a decent meal. But opt for a real campsite cooking set so you won't have to worry about losing things between your campsite and your kitchen at home.
One piece to consider grabbing from your kitchen is a cast-iron skillet. These pans can withstand the heat of the fire, are easy to clean and can be used to cook almost any meal.
- Swap Lawn Chairs for Lounge Chairs
Plastic chairs and cooler seating have no place in a glamping meal. Outdoor gear companies make camp chairs that take your camping meal to a new level and rival your in-home furniture. Comfy, stylish and with all the amenities you'll need at the campsite, like cup holders and built-in coolers, these chairs will transport you to a whole new level of campsite comfort.
- Cook From a Book
There are many cookbooks and magazines specific to camping meals, desserts and drinks. Read through magazine's online camping cookbook for campsite desserts, dinners and breakfasts; print the recipes to bring with you to the campsite.
- Bring a Camping Stove
If you're car camping, space and weight aren't an issue so you can bring a stove that will handle everything that you need to cook. Make sure it's large enough to hold your biggest pan and sturdy enough that it won't tip over.
For large groups, bring a stove with more than one burner so you can prep everything at once.
- Bring a Basecamp Kitchen
- Use Your Home Kitchen as Your Prep Kitchen
Mix spices for meats or meals, prep the pancake mix so you just have to add water or milk, and cut all your veggies all before you head for the campsite. At the campsite, you simply heat the spiced cider or shake and pour your favorite adult beverages.
- Add the Martha Stewart Finishing Touch
Add homey touches to your camping meal—a tablecloth, some napkins, and even stainless-steel nesting wine glasses. Don't forget candles and a lantern so you can still enjoy the fun once the sunsets. And if you really can't survive without that fresh cup of coffee, don't worry.