9 No Cook Camping Meals and Ideas

It isn’t really easy to carry much stuff with campers who use regular cars. To eliminate the distress, the best option is always to carry easy to cook and ready to cook food items.

Camping is one of the top forms of leisure. Among various types of camping, car camping is deemed one of the most secure and less volatile, especially when you need a serene and less populated spot. 

A car camp is where you drive to the outdoor site to stay and enjoy the scenic beauty, but instead of a tent, you use a car as your bed. Sometimes setting up a tent is also considered by the campers as an extension. 

However, just like any other camping, you need to be prepared to enjoy the experience fully. When you backpack and car pack for camping, the most necessary thing is to plan the food. To keep the body warm and enthusiastic, a supply of nutrition is necessary. While packing your meal, always consider nutritious foods with easy making.  

When staying in an isolated area away from the hustle, you should arrange every meal. To make it easier, you can use easy to cook and ready to cook foods with constrained sources. 

5 Easy-To-Cook Meal Ideas for Campers

They are meals with simple and easy recipes. With lesser ingredients, they can be made quickly.  

While camping, we tend to cook instant meals and hustle-free. Most of the time, people lack the stuff to cook, and these times they rely on easy-to-cook items.  

  • Time: 10-15 minutes 
  • Recipe: few simple steps to prepare the meal 
  • Ingredients: have to add to prepare final dish 
  • Prepare: have to make by combining every ingredient 

Some of the popular and easy cook meal ideas that one can do during car camping are as follows: 

  1. Pancakes 
  2. Noodles 
  3. Salads 
  4. Oatmeal 
  5. Pasta 

1. Pancakes

Easy To Cook Food - Pancakes

One of the appetizing meals loved by every age group. They can be consumed at any time, including breakfast and dinner. They are of different flavors.  

Nowadays, it’s available in the instant mix, easily made. They only need 5-6 ingredients to make the dish. They are rich in carbohydrates and proteins and are full nutrition. They can be made as a diet-free, sugar-free, and complete vegan. 

Pancake Recipe for Camping

  • Take a bowl and mix the appropriate amount of flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. 
  • Mix it well. 
  • Pour milk and melted butter into the mix. 
  • Mix it well until you get a smoothie texture. 
  • Take a frying pan and heat it on medium heat. 
  • Pour the batter into the pan (1/2 cup for 1 pancake). 
  • Heat both sides until you get brown.

Bestselling pancake products

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Betty Crocker Buttermilk Pancake Mix, 6.75 oz (Pack of 9)
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  • ENDLESS OPTIONS: Use as waffle mix or pancake mix to create a variety of recipes the whole family will love; perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert
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  • PANCAKE MIX: Create a delicious, fluffy, mouth-watering breakfast treat with this Cinnamon Toast Crunch pancake mix
  • JUST ADD WATER OR MILK: Simply add water or milk and delicious pancakes are only a few steps away; The kit includes Cinnadust for the pancake mix and cereal topping to top your pancakes
  • BREAKFAST TREAT: From the box to the skillet in minutes; Perfect for a fun breakfast treat and is sure to please the whole family

2. Noodles

Another easy dish to make without getting a fizzy hand is noodles. You can make the needles upon your choice and needs. There are veg and non-veg noodles. Some of the basic ingredients are black pepper, sauce, and noodles.  

Easy To Cook Meal - Noodles

Instant Camping Noodle Recipe

  • Rinse the vegetables (any vegetables of your preference) and chop upon your own needs. 
  • Take a pan and boil water. Add salt and one teaspoon of oil to the boiled water. 
  • Add noodles-instant, soba, rice, or any kind 
  • Cook the raw noodles as they are instructed. 
  • Drain the noodles once it is cooked. 
  • Cook the vegetables and stir fry the noodles with the chopped vegetables. 
  • Add needed masala powders, sauce, and flavors. 
See also  27 Best Camping Snacks

Bestselling Noodles

Bestseller No. 1
Maruchan Instant Lunch Chicken Flavor, 2.25 Ounce (Pack of 12)
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  • Instant recipe prepares in just 3 minutes
Bestseller No. 2
Maruchan Yakisoba Teriyaki Chicken, 3.98 Oz, Pack of 8
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  • CHEWY NOODLES - Al dente noodles that match perfectly with the savory flavors of Shin Black
  • MORE VEGETABLES & BEEF CHUNKS - Has significantly more components, such as vegetables including Bok choy, mushrooms, red peppers as well as richer flakes and large beef chunks
Bestseller No. 4
Samyang Buldak Korean Hot Spicy Chicken Stir-Fried Ramyun Noodles 4.94...
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  • CHEWY NOODLES, FLAVORFUL FLAKES – Noodles have a good texture, pleasantly chewy and firm. It has lots of flavor by a perfect spicy sauce mix and trademark seaweed and sesame flakes.

3. Salads

They are easy to prepare. You only need a handful of veggies and fruits for one plate of salads. 

See also  27 Best Camping Snacks

They are easy and healthy, including all nutritious values they can follow in every diet. There are various types of salads, including pasta salad, broccoli salads, mixed salads, green salads, vegetable salads, vegan salads, and many more.  

Salad Recipe for Outdoor Enthusiasts

  • Take the needed fruits and veggies of any kind. 
  • Mix it well by adding salt and flavors(cheese, garlic, onion, fennels, etc.). 
  • Ready to serve. 

Bestselling Salad Products

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  • PROTEIN SNACKS: This delicious Bumble Bee chicken salad with crackers kit is a good source of protein (See product packaging for nutrition information)
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  • A rich blend of sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, soy nuts and cranberries
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  • Delicious glazed walnuts with dried sweetened cranberries and blueberries come together in this mix for the perfect salad topper
  • Add taste and crunch to everyday salads, yogurt, oatmeal, or cottage cheese

4. Oatmeal

They are consumed mainly for breakfast. Oatmeal has a creamy texture that looks like porridge. You can get various types of oats from the market, including quick oats, whole oats, old-fashioned oats, and steel oats. 

See also  27 Best Camping Snacks

Camper’s Go-to Oatmeal Recipe

  • Boil an appropriate amount of milk or water, add your oat variety to the boiled water. 
  • Add salt and other spices depending on need. 
  • Heat the oats in simmer heat until you get a thicker consistency. 
  • When you get the desired texture, garnish with favorite toppings and serve. 

Bestselling Oatmeal

Bestseller No. 1
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Quaker Instant Oatmeal Express Cups, 4 Flavor Variety Pack, 1.76 Ounce...
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Bestseller No. 3
Bob's Red Mill Organic Extra Thick Rolled Oats, 32-ounce (Pack of 4)
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Amazon Brand - Happy Belly Old Fashioned Oats, 18 Ounce
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5. Pasta

Pasta is another easy meal that can be cooked in many ways. Shape, amount, and type of pasta can be decided by yourself. Unlike dried one, cooked pasta is a time saver with a maximum of 3 minutes to prepare. 

Pasta Recipe for Camping

  • Boil the water in a pan. 
  • Add pasta to the boiled water. 
  • Add a pinch of salt of your taste and stir the pasta. 
  • Drain the pasta once it is cooked, save 1-2 cups of pasta water. 
  • Stir the pasta by pouring the drain water into the pan. 
  • Add flavors and sauce upon your taste to the pasta. 
  • Serve the pasta.   

Bestselling Pasta

Bestseller No. 1
Barilla Spaghetti Pasta, 16 oz. Box (Pack of 8) - Non-GMO Pasta Made...
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  • BARILLA PASTA: Long, golden strands of pasta made with 100% durum wheat and water to deliver great taste and "al dente" texture every time
  • CREATE DELICIOUS PASTA MEALS: Pairs well with just about any type of pasta sauce or spaghetti sauce: from a simple tomato sauce to a hearty meat sauce, a chunky vegetable sauce or a creamy carbonara...
Bestseller No. 2
Barilla Penne Pasta, 16 oz. Box (Pack of 12) - Non-GMO Pasta Made with...
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  • CREATE DELICIOUS PASTA MEALS: Penne pasta and spaghetti pair well with just about any type of pasta sauce: from a simple tomato sauce to a hearty meat sauce, a chunky vegetable sauce, a refined...
Bestseller No. 5
Barilla Ready Pasta, Rotini, 8.5 Ounce (Pack of 6)
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4 Ready-to-Cook Camping Meals

They contain all the ingredients; they only need cooking to prepare. The instructions are labeled in the package. You just have to follow them to make the final meal.  

Ready-to-cook foods are in raw form. They save time and effort, unlike other meals. 

  • Estimated time: 2-3 minutes 
  • Recipe: follow the instructions, mostly needs re-heating only 
  • Ingredients: all are already added to the pack 
  • Prepare: they are in raw form 

If you are not keen on preparing and cooking easy-to-cook meals, there are ready-to-cook alternatives that do not need much effort and thinking. 

These are our recommended read-to-cook alternatives:   

Bestselling Ready-to-cook Meals

Bestseller No. 1
EL The Cook Masala Khichadi Kit (Kitchari) | Ready-to-Cook Indian Meal...
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  • READY IN 10 MIN, 3 STEPs: Simply Cook the Lentils & Rice mix & garnish with the Tempered Spice seasoning (as per your taste), Everything given in the box.
  • CLEAN INGREDIENTS, TRADITIONAL TECHNIQUES: Made with All-natural ingredients & Classic family techniques. NO MSG/ preservatives/ artificial colors. The Tempered Spice seasoning is made with Ghee &...
Bestseller No. 2
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  • Certified USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified
  • Gluten-free and organic grain blend providing 8 grams of protein and 7 grams of dietary fiber per serving
Bestseller No. 3
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Bestseller No. 4
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  • A TRADITIONAL DISH: Traditional Creole dish with Caribbean influence.
  • EASY TO PREPARE: Prepared and on the table in less than 30 minutes.
SaleBestseller No. 5
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  • Product 1: LESS SODIUM: Dry beans contains less sodium than canned beans they are also cost-effective and easy to store
Bestseller No. 6
Truroots Organic Quick Cook Olive Oil And Sea Salt Quinoa, Brown Rice...
746 Reviews
TruRoots Organic Quick Cook Olive Oil and Sea Salt Quinoa, Brown Rice...
  • Contains 1- 8.5 Ounce Pouch of truRoots Organic Quick Cook Olive Oil and Sea Salt Quinoa, Brown Rice and Lentil Blend
  • Certified USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified
  • Gluten-free and organic grain blend providing 8 grams of protein and 7 grams of dietary fiber per serving
SaleBestseller No. 7
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  • AIDS IN WEIGHT MANAGEMENT - All-natural and gluten-free, our white quinoa helps slow down your body’s digestion and absorption, resulting in stabilized sugar and lowered cholesterol levels.
  • CONTAINS ALL NINE ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS: Quinoa is high in protein, protein is made of amino acids, nine of which are called essential, as your body cannot produce them and needs to obtain them...

1. Ready Wise Emergency Food

ReadyWise Emergency Food Entrée Box Kit, Freeze-Dried and Dehydrated...
  • ESSENTIAL MEALS READY TO EAT: Each food kit contains 60 servings with 3 different meal options to choose from.
  • JUST ADD WATER: Each entrée is easy to prepare in any emergency circumstance using just water.
  • LONG-LASTING STORAGE: Durable, storable food pouches keep rations fresh for up to 25 years.
  • Brand: Ready Wise 
  • Nature: freeze-dried and dehydrated meals 
  • Flavors and pack: contain three packs including cheesy macaroni and chicken noodles 
  • Storage: durable and has a long shelf life. 
  • How to cook: add water and ready to serve 

2. Mountain House Adventure Meals

Mountain House Breakfast Skillet | Freeze Dried Backpacking & Camping...
  • DELICIOUS BREAKFAST! Hash browns scrambled eggs crumbled pork patty peppers and onions Freeze-dried to lock in nutrients and freshness No refrigeration needed
  • NO ARTIFICIAL COLORS OR FLAVORS - Made with no artificial flavors or colors and certified gluten-free by GFCO Pouch contains two total servings Great for one hungry backpacker or share it with your...
  • QUICK PREP - Just add hot water to the pouch & eat in less than 10 minutes with no cleanup The pouch has a shorter wider more bowl-like shape for an easier eating experience Eat straight from the...
  • Brand: Mountain House 
  • Nature: breakfast skillet in freeze-dried packing 
  • Flavors and pack: unflavored and of no artificial colors, gluten-free. 
  • Storage: durable and high shelf life 
  • How to cook: add water and ready to eat 

3. Peak Refuel Chicken

Peak Refuel Chicken Alfredo Pasta | 2 Serving Pouch | Freeze Dried...
  • Amazing Taste - No longer do you need to compromise taste for convenience! Our Chicken Alfredo contains high quality ingredients to ensure an appetizing and nutritious meal while on the trail. What...
  • 53 Grams Protein/Pouch - This meal contains 100% real meat, with no meat fillers! We provide a meal loaded with protein required to conquer any adventure. Our meats are sourced from trusted suppliers...
  • Premium Freeze-Dried - The freeze-drying process locks in important nutrients offering a meal with a natural taste and texture, just like it came straight from your house. So whether you are camping...
  • Brand: Peak Refuel 
  • Nature: freeze-dried chicken alfredo pasta 
  • Flavors and pack: alfredo sauce with meat fillers 
  • Storage: durable  
  • How to cook: add boiled water  


4. Good To-Go – The Weekender Pack

GOOD TO-GO Weekender 3-Pack Vegan | 2 Entrees + 1 Breakfast | Herbed...
  • ADD WATER and in minutes enjoy a delicious meal made from clean ingredients, on or off the trail
  • DEHYDRATED FOOD backpacking food, camping food, hiking food, emergency food supply, survival food
  • LIGHTWEIGHT easy storage, similar to freeze dried food but tastes DELICIOUS!
  • Brand: Good To-Go 
  • Nature: gluten-free, vegan freeze-dried, and dehydrated food packing 
  • Flavors and pack: Thai curry, Mexican quinoa bowl 
  • Storage: durable 
  • How to cook: add water and boil 


Pros and Cons of Car Camping

Packing The Car For A Weekend Adventure Packing The Trunk For An Outdoor Adventure Travel Road Trip T20 Wq6Wvw

Pros of Car Camping 

  • Luxury feeling by carrying stuff- Unlike backpacking, your bag isn’t restrained to lightweight materials. When you backpack, you have to analyze the volume and space of each material and its essential needs. But in car camping, you can carry almost everything, including a mattress, chair, kitchen utensils, bicycle, fishing rod, and anything you need.    
  • More choices of developed sites – Due to the rising popularity of car camping, more people are involved in the camping business by providing secured sites to car camping by offering food, electricity, and necessities. Nowadays, car camping is not a struggle and feared one. People feel more comfortable and secure due to these developed sites.   
  • Serene atmosphere – A blissful atmosphere provides the expected warmth to your hectic schedules. The convenient stay and packing may help you enjoy every breeze and weather without being reluctant. You can head up to every storm without fear.   
  • Trouble-free meals – You can use easy-to-cook and ready-to-cook foods than no-cook food items. You can also carry perishable food items if you need them. Unlike other camping, car camping paves the way to prepare various dishes with easy cooking.   
  • No need to fit – Just like another outing, spending time on the weekend, you can plan the trip. There is no need to compensate for the vitamins and minerals or keep your body healthy and fit for a marathon. You are free to choose your food items regardless of the results. 

Cons of Car Camping 

  • To unpack and wrap it up 
  • Due to the luxury experience, more stuff to unwarp once it’s finished 
  • Need more cleaning 

How to keep food cold while camping without a fridge?

You can keep camping food cold by storing them along with ice packs in storage containers.

How to keep food warm while camping?

To keep food warm while camping, make sure to separate them from your cold food items. Packing them in aluminum foil and towels will also ensure your food stays warm for a few hours. You can also place newspapers or heat packs at the bottom of coolers and then place your hot food on top.

What food to take on camping trips?

This would depend on the duration of your camping trip. You can find camping food ideas in this article for your next camping trip.

How to store food when camping in bear country?

When camping in bear country, make sure you pack your food/meal items in a bear-proof bear bag. A bear bag could be any bag or sack and for it to be bear-proof, hang it at least 10 feet off the ground. Aside from hanging the sack, you can also buy a bear canister like this (https://amzn.to/3E0zLSF) from Amazon. Bear canisters are heavy-duty containers that are a guaranteed no-fail.

The Verdict

Depending on your skills and needs during camping, you can choose either of the two cooking methods. 

If you are a person who likes cooking, you can opt for easy cooking as it still leaves a little bit of freedom and imagination during food preparation. If you need instant meals and are always on the go, opt for ready-to-cook meals.   

Closing Points

It is always fun to cook. With a few simpler and easy cooking steps, you get tasty foods and good memories to cherish. But if you like to save up energy and adventure, pick ready-to-cook meals. Either way, what is important is you get healthy and energizing food that will make your camping comfortable and hassle-free. 

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Donald Miller

Hi, I am Donald Miller. I love spending time outdoors backpacking and camping with my family and friends. I enjoy writing about my experiences and sharing them with others through my blog at gociety.com. It's great to meet you!