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Cheap, primal, kid friendly campfire foods

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  • Cheap, primal, kid friendly campfire foods

    We're going camping in Aug as a family, and I want to cook over an open fire while we're there. What can we make that's primal (no smores), not too expensive (steak), and kid friendly? I do have a dutch oven, and would be open to buying some of those cast iron sandwich makers (and using them for something other than a sandwich).

    Robin's Roost
    My Primal Journal

  • #2
    Just the first things that come to mind:

    Apples with cinnamon & sprinkled with nuts (a dab of butter is good too)
    Bananas slightly roasted/grilled in the skin, can cut in half lengthwise or put a slit in the skin & stuff some dark chocolate chips in there. Ends up being gooey, but yummy!

    Just about anything you would roast in the oven is good packed in foil with some oil/butter and seasonings and cooked above the fire. If you put directly on the fire, make sure to turn it frequently & keep an eye so it doesn't burn. Some ideas for that:
    Potatoes or sweet potatoes diced up with onions, mixed with butter or olive oil and salt, pepper, garlic
    Veggies done the same way (I've done this with zucchini, mushrooms, broccoli, etc)
    Salmon, chicken, or other fish (add extra spices to liven these up), assuming you will have a cooler. If not, you can make one-pot meals with chicken or salmon pouches, some cut up veggies, and a simple sauce/seasonings. Sometimes I take Frontera Foods enchilada sauce as the ingredients are pretty decent.. and it is delicious with chicken & a ton of veggies (and shredded cheese, yum).

    I'm sure others will have good suggestions too. Have a great trip!
    Jen, former Midwesterner, living in the middle of nowhere.


    • #3
      ribs; chicken legs; primal-friendly hot dogs, whole fish (I'm thinking stuff you could skewer on a stick and hold over the flames or put on a grill) shish kebab stuff. If you have a rotisserie spit or make one you could do whole chicken, rabbit, roasts, pretty much anything though that will take more time. You could also roast those in the dutch oven buried under coals and ash (pit BBQ style)

      yams, sweet potatoes, other root veggies you can roast in the ashes, fresh green beans can be pan-fired in the dutch oven with some butter and salt (very yummy and a nice replacement for chips), same with the other veggies Jen AlcesAlces mentioned above. Fresh green salads and fruits to round everything out.

      Sounds like a fun trip!
      See what I'm up to: The Primal Gardener


      • #4
        We just got back from our first trip of the season, and our first time eating primal while out in the wilds. It went really well, because it was pretty much like every other time I've gone camping, except sans-bread/buns.

        Some information about my camp kit -- I have a small burner that I attach to a propane base, as well as a propane-fueled portable grill. When I'm feeling up to it, I also sometimes bring along a massive cast iron dutch oven and some charcoal briquettes. Also, I do not have kids, so my advice may be utterly useless.

        My personal experience is this -- campfires are awesome, but often unpredictable, and require someone to tend to them and generate a good bed of coals. While it may seem less romantic to whip out the propane burner and prep breakfast with it, it's better than going hungry because you don't have enough heat to cook your food OR you burn the living bejeezus out of it because you didn't realize how hot it was. (My guy is proud of building fires that are hot enough to melt glass. Pretty to watch. Difficult to cook a hobo pack on.)

        At home, I prepped the following things:
        • Hardboiled eggs (excellent while hiking)
        • Chopped greens
        • Chopped carrots, radishes, beets (which I stored in a tiffin)
        • Mix of chopped tomatoes and avocado, lightly dressed with lemon juice to help combat browning (the avocadoes still browned a little, but we didn't care after tossing them into the salad) (these went in another layer of the tiffin)
        • Salad dressing -- leftover lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper (I packed this in a plastic container on top of the greens)
        • Cut strawberries

        The greens are delicate and should not be put on very very cold surfaces (i.e., an ice pack), but they do fine stored near the top of your ice cooler. We also had along some primal-friendly hot dogs (thanks, Applegate Farms!) to replace the "marshmallow experience" (i.e., we wanted something we could cook on sticks over the fire, and that did the trick).

        I also second the bananas roasted on the fire. Yum yum.

        Our breakfast was scrambled eggs with bacon, onions, and mushrooms. Lunch was the aforementioned hardboiled eggs (we went hiking, and weren't terribly hungry, so we listened to our guts and just ate those). Dinner was a pair of handsome NY strips cooked on the grill with loads of salad. We ate like kings, enjoyed the wilds, and will happily do it again in a month or so.

        And though it's not very primal...I have to say one of my favorite fireside treats is a strawberry on a stick, with a marshmallow above it. Put over the fire until the marshmallow is cooked to desire crustiness, then combine them by shoving the strawberry into the gooey marshmallow once it's cooled slightly (nothing worse than getting marshmallow napalm all over your fingers). I love this more than s'mores. It's divine.

        When I was a SAD eater, I had a cookbook called "Leave No Crumbs", and while I am not sure how many of the recipes are applicable to primal eating, there are some great techniques in there (such as, I think, how to use a dutch oven like an oven). You may wish to check it out. Good luck!
        My Primal Meanderings


        • #5
          Applegate has grassfed hot dogs and roast beef.


          • #6


            • #7
              Go catch a fish (be that in the freezer or in a river/lake - the latter would be preferred, lol), gut it, season it (or don't), put a stick through it, let it burn! Ok, you might not want it to actually BURN, but grill it over the flames ^^

              Also, you can wrap veggies (or pretty much anything) in alu foil and place it in embers.
              You can do the same with a banana in its peel - you can stuff it with goodies like chocolate, cinnamon or whatever. It's a nice dessert!


              • #8
                don't forget omelets in a bag! boil a pot of water - crack two-three eggs into a ziploc sandwich bag - add whatever you like (cheese, olives, chopped meat, green onions, etc) - then seal the zipper and squoosh it up. Drop the bags into the boiling water and cook for 3-4 min. Dump them out onto a plate and enjoy! They turn out really fluffy and delish - plus the kids will have fun making them!

                "Do or do not do, there is no try" - Yoda


                • #9
                  No s'mores, but another one of my favorite campfire treats is easily primalizeable. Slice a bananna down the middle, put in some dark chocolate chips, wrap it up in foil, stick it in the coals while you eat your meal. Once you're done unwrap and it's warm and gooey and banannas are SO sweet the dark chocolate goes quite well


                  • #10
                    Here's one the kids can make on their own. Get some whole cabbage leaves, some ground beef (or other ground meat), and various vegetables (onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, etc) and condiments. On a piece of aluminum foil, lay down a couple of cabbage leaves, then meat and veggies, and top with a few more cabbage leaves. Warp the foil (not too tight) and put your initials on the outside with mustard. Lay it on hot coals until the mustard burns off and it should be done. The cabbage will steam everything inside.

                    You can do something similar with fruits for dessert. Cut the top off of an apple like you're carving a pumpkin, dig out the core and replace with dark chocolate morsels. Put the "lid" back on the apple, wrap in foil, and place on hot coals.

                    If you don't mind including dairy in the diet, you can get some zip bags and make ice cream. In a sandwich-size zip bag, pour a cup of heavy cream and tsp of vanilla; sweetener is optional, or you can add naturally sweet fruit. In a larger gallon-size bag, put a couple handfuls of ice, a handful of rock salt, and the zipped sandwich bag. Shake it around for 5-10 minutes, or make a game out of tossing the bags between people. When the cream starts to firm up, take out the smaller bag and grab a spoon.
                    Last edited by englebt; 04-25-2011, 08:38 AM.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by englebt View Post
                      Warp the foil (not too tight) and put your initials on the outside with mustard. Lay it on hot coals until the mustard burns off and it should be done. The cabbage will steam everything inside.
                      That's brilliant! Does the ground beef need to be cooked or can it go in raw?
                      My Primal Meanderings


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by onalark View Post
                        That's brilliant! Does the ground beef need to be cooked or can it go in raw?
                        Raw is best, that way it absorbs some of the flavors from the veggies while it cooks. Shape your beef into patties like you're making hamburgers. If you have a lot, you might try making them into meatballs.


                        • #13
                          Wow! These are fabulous ideas! Thanks!

                          Robin's Roost
                          My Primal Journal