Easy options for outdoor meals
With the fall breeze rolling in and slightly cooler temperatures, we are getting into prime camping season. Pitch a tent, pack a bag, and get the campfire roaring. This month we are bringing you those easy tasty treats best enjoyed under the stars.
The Snack: Mango Coconut Chia Seed Pudding
If you haven’t tried chia seeds, they are packed with a serious amount of fiber, magnesium, and protein. They are the perfect snack for adventuring. It’s about the easiest thing to prepare (you can use almond milk, coconut milk, or even water) and keeps for up to a week in the fridge so you can make it ahead.
• 2 cups coconut milk
• 6 tbsp chia seeds
• 4 tbsp honey or agave
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• Flesh of 2 ripe mangos or frozen if not the season
• 1 pint strawberries, chopped
• Shredded coconut to top
• Mix together the coconut milk, chia seeds and vanilla extract in a bowl the night before your camping adventure. Stir after the first 15 minutes and leave in the fridge to set overnight. Add a bit of honey or agave to chopped strawberries until desired sweetness is reached. Set aside. Blend mango until it reaches a thick saucy texture. Set aside. Remove the pudding from the fridge. Layer individual containers with pudding, mango, and strawberries. Top with desiccated coconut. Keep as cool as possible until ready to enjoy.
The Main Event: Frito Pie
Fritos are so unbelievably underrated. These little joyous hand “pies” let you leave the plates at home and enjoy your dinner directly out of the bag. What could possibly be more primal than that? Just remember to pack extra napkins.
• 8 snack size bags of Fritos or other corn chips
• 8 cups homemade or two large cans of chili
• 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
• Toppings (to taste): sour cream, pico de gallo, sliced jalapeño
• Cut the bag of Fritos lengthwise to make a little bowl. Warm chili in a pot over the fire or on a grill top until bubbling. Ladle chili on top of Fritos and add desired toppings, to taste.
S’mores Banana Splits
These easy treats give you all that ooey gooey texture you love in a slightly healthier package. Get creative with your toppings and pack them up just ahead of your trip. All you have to do is throw them straight on the fire.
• 6 large bananas, unpeeled
• 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
• Mini marshmallows, to taste
• 2 graham crackers, smashed into pieces
• Spray sheets of aluminum foil with non-stick cooking spray. Slice the peel of the banana lengthwise without cutting the whole way through. Open the split just enough to stuff with chocolate, marshmallows, as desired. Wrap in aluminum foil and place on the grill top or directly on the fire for five minutes. Unwrap bananas carefully, top with graham cracker crumbs and enjoy.
Written and photographed by Ailsa Von Dobeneck