I expressed how easy it can be to prep and cook fantastic gluten free meals when camping with limited resources in a previous post. Still, it can be completely daunting to head for the woods with a camp stove and cooler if you’re ill experienced, or just aren’t prepared. Already on the road? it’s difficult to pick up specialty items like gluten free bread, crackers, pasta, or soy sauce because not every small town along the way will be health savvy. In fact, most aren’t. Before you’re stranded by the campfire with nothing but canned soup, remember to pick up the basics at your local Whole Foods or gluten free grocery section, it’s always easy to buy fresh fruits and vegetables along the way.

On a recent excursion to Tahoe National Forest in our ’93 Ford camper van, we packed the mini fridge full of farmer’s market produce and filled our cabinets with snacks before leaving town. The following 4 days of meal prep were worry free. Some highlights of the weekend (aside from floating down the South Yuba River and morning swims in Scott’s Flat reservoir) included a caprese salad with seared eggplant, french toast topped with homemade granola, ripe organic peaches & vermont maple syrup, and tortilla soup with summer vegetables. So now let me ask, why are you eating instant oatmeal and canned chili if you’ve got the space and the means to make something better? When I’m roughing it, food is one of my greatest pleasures. After a long hike or day at the lake, I’m dying for a good meal with real ingredients.

What you’ll need to create your campground kitchen (and these are the absolute basics):

Propane camp stove (unless you’ve got the luxury of a camper with a built in stove top)

2 quart sauce pot with lid

8-10″ non stick frying pan or cast iron skillet

A good sharp knife for chopping


Cutting board

Cooler w/ ice packs (or a mini fridge, again if you’ve got the camper)

Battery powered lantern and candles

Utensils, plates, bowls

Now that we’ve got the kitchen set up, it’s easy to throw together simple recipes like you would at home.

Watch for future posts with recipes and more info on gluten free camping and backpacking.

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