Summer Meal Planning

It's finally starting to feel like summer around here and my family and I are excited to do all of our favorite summer activities – like camping! I think I have mentioned before that we are big campers (not your roughing-it-in-a-tent-sleep-on-the-ground kind of campers … more like "glampers"). We enjoy our camper and this past weekend we started getting it all loaded and ready for our first camping trip coming up soon.

One of the things I struggle with as a mom is meal planning and making sure to plan ahead to be ready for all of life's hectic nights of running for sports and other activities. We have to resort to ordering take-out, running through the drive-thru or frozen pizza more often than I care to admit. But one of the things camping does is force me to plan ahead – and it makes me feel so much better and organized. It is so awesome to just know what’s for each meal and know I have all the ingredients on hand. I even sometimes prep things ahead (I know … impressive, right?)! I know the more I can do at home ahead of time, the more time I will have to relax and enjoy hiking, biking, fishing, playing games and all the other fun things we like to do when camping. Let's hope this summer some of the meal planning for camping starts to spread into the weeknights at home, too (fingers crossed!).

This year, I decided to create a go-to list of foods that are easy to bring along camping that my family loves. That way I can just pick a few meals from the list each camping trip and not have to worry about coming up with ideas each time. I even prepped a few things ahead and put them in the freezer! That will save lots of time.

Here's what I have on our go-to list:

  • Apple Cheddar Turkey Burgers with carrots and grape tomatoes. These turkey burgers are so moist and delicious! I have them prepped and in the freezer in packs of four so I can just grab a bag and throw them in the camper. Simply mix the ingredients and form into patties. Separate the patties with waxed paper and freeze. I prefer to eat my burger on a bed of lettuce, but the rest of my family enjoys it on a bun. Either way, you won't be disappointed.

    Summer Meal Planning & Prep - Ingredients

    Summer Meal Planning & Prep - Burger Prep

    Summer Meal Planning & Prep - on Bun

    Summer Meal Planning & Prep - Lettuce Wrap
    View Apple Cheddar Turkey Burger recipe »
  • Hot dogs and/or brats with potato chips
  • Chicken kabobs. A couple of our favorite recipes are Tropical Teriyaki Chicken Kabobs and BBQ Bacon Chicken Kabobs
  • Pork chops with chopped red potatoes and green beans. We switch it up between bone-in and boneless pork chops and use various seasoning combinations, but we love to serve our chops with cut-up red potatoes seasoned with Malt Vinegar French Fry Seasoning and a pad of butter. Yum!
  • Ham steak brushed with Smoky Bacon BBQ Sauce, hash browns and peas
  • Grilled Tarragon Salmon, instant brown rice and steamed broccoli
  • Steak seasoned with Ultimate Steak™ Seasoning and baked potatoes or baked sweet potatoes
  • Baby back ribs with potato salad and baked beans. To make things simpler when we are camping, I pre-cook the ribs in the oven. To do so, I season them with Onion Onion™ Seasoning, Garlic Garlic™ Seasoning and a touch of Seasoned Salt and bake at 300°F for about 3 hours. Simply freeze or refrigerate until you want to make them for a meal. Reheat all the way through on the grill and brush with Smoky Bacon BBQ Sauce.
  • Venison steak and sweet corn. Check out this delicious recipe for Grilled Corn on the Cob

What are your go-to summer grilling meals? Do you have any suggestions for new meals I can bring camping? If so, leave them in the comments below. I'd be happy to give them a try!

Happy summer!

- Sara

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