3 Hearty Breakfast Recipes for Camping and Backpacking
One of the greatest joys of camping and backpacking is getting to eat every meal in incredible, scenic locations. Every time I’m out in the wilderness, I’ve found myself marveling at how foods that would undoubtedly taste bland and uninspiring at home are inexplicably rendered delicious by the grittier context of an adventure. That being said, the effect is even more pronounced when the food being eating is actually delicious to begin with. Taking the time to plan nutritious and appetizing meals while camping or backpacking will ensure high energy levels throughout the day and work wonders for keeping spirits high. Let’s take a look at three of my favorite camping breakfast recipes.
1) Berry Oatmeal Breakfast Recipe
Prep & Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
Application: camping and backpacking
When I first started backpacking, I religiously used instant oatmeal, thinking that rolled oats would take far too long and use too much gas to cook on the trail. The results were often underwhelming. Fortunately, I eventually gave old-fashioned rolled oats a try and discovered they were infinitely more delicious and took only a little longer to make.
- 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
- 2 cups water
- 1-3 raw cane sugar packets for desired sweetness
- Fresh or freeze dried berries
- 1-2 cinnamon sticks
Ingredients can vary based on activity type. For backpacking, I substitute fresh berries for freeze dried berries, use ground cinnamon or leave it out, and use a filter to supply the water from a nearby source. Serving size for one person is somewhere around 1/2 cup rolled oats depending on your appetite, and the water to oats ratio is usually 2:1. Read the packaging of your oats to be sure.
- Bring 2 cups of water to boil in WindBurner sauce pot and add in the oats and cinnamon sticks. Making oatmeal at home, I would typically continue to cook the oats on low to medium heat until cooked. However, to conserve gas while backpacking, I often just turn off the stove, put the lid on, and wait. After 10-20 minutes (depending on desired consistency) the oats will be cooked. It may be necessary to relight the stove and bring the water to boil again part way through this process.
- Once cooked, mix in sugar or honey if sweetener is desired and stir.
- Finally, add in the berries, remove the cinnamon sticks and you’re ready to eat!
2) Chorizo Breakfast Burrito Recipe
If you’re looking for an extremely filling, protein filled, hot breakfast idea for a slow morning, nothing quite hits the spot like a breakfast burrito. This recipe is best suited for campers with access to a cooler, or those able to buy ingredients shortly before consuming.
Prep & Cook Time: 30-45 minutes
Ingredients: (makes two burritos):
- 2 Flour tortillas
- Chorizo (I used half a packet of Trader Joe’s soy chorizo)
- 2-3 medium potatoes
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 1 garlic clove (or garlic powder)
- 1/3 cup shredded cheddar
- Salt to taste
- Olive oil or butter
- Guacamole or avocado
- Canned black or refried beans
- Hot sauce of your choice
- Heat oil or butter on the WindBurner aluminum nonstick skillet then add onions. Let cook for a few minutes before adding chopped potatoes and minced garlic. Cook and stir until slightly crispy.
- Empty into a bowl and heat up chorizo in the skillet until cooked.
- Finally scramble 2-3 eggs and assemble the ingredients on the tortilla.
If having to cook everything separately seems daunting, I often cook everything together by adding the onions, the potatoes, the chorizo, and finally cracking two eggs over the top and stirring until cooked. The result is less aesthetically pleasing but equally delicious.
- Top off the burrito with guacamole, cheese, and hot sauce, and roll it up.
Don’t get carried away with the amount of filling in any one burrito or you won’t be able to wrap up the tortilla. The optional final touch is to add just a touch of oil to the pan, and put the wrapped burritos on the skillet on medium heat for a few minutes.
Flip them once, and cook until the tortillas turn crispy. Be sure not to burn them!
3) Banana Pancakes Recipe
Seriously. What’s not to like about this tried, true and downright easy favorite.
Prep & Cook Time: 20-30 Minutes
Application: Camping and Backpacking
- 3/4 cup pancake mix
- 2/3 cup water
- 1 banana
- syrup or sugar packets
Make sure to pick a pancake mix that only requires water. Alternatively, you can also pre-make your own pancake mix.
- Mash up the banana in a bowl, pour in the pancake mix, and add water. Stir until the consistency becomes even.
- Apply grease to the aluminum skillet, and spoon on the batter.
- Once on the pan, optionally place a few blueberries on top. Shortly after air bubbles begin to reach the top of the pancake, it is ready to be flipped.
To keep this dish lightweight, you can skip the banana or the blue berries, or replace them with freeze dried fruit. You may not necessarily need to grease the pan, but I’ve found doing so usually leads to better results. For backpackers, small, well-sealed bottles of oil or butter will work. Powdered butter is also available for the ultralight.
Share your favorite breakfast recipes for camping in the comments below!
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About the Author/Photographer
Jacob Chang-Rascle is a photographer and avid backpacker. He specializes in landscape photography and is currently working on a book to document some of the world’s greatest remaining coastal wildernesses. His work can be found here: https://jacobchangrascle.com