Food waste at camp is far more common that we care to admit, with food waste one of the biggest contributors to landfill in Australia. We get overly excited while shopping for our camping trip and then thing you know we've come home with food that's gone bad or filled with water in the esky. So we've put together some great tips on how to reduce food waste while camping.
Plan out what meals you want to eat on your trip
Write down the meals you’d like to eat each day so you can get exactly what you need shopping. Even consider what you’d like to drink with your meals or snack on in between. This will also help with overspending at the supermarket.
Check your pantry and freezer
You may already have what you need in the cupboard. There’s no point doubling up on tomato sauce or letting the meat in the freezer go past its expiry. Utilise what you already have for your trip. While your meal planning for your grocery trip, note down what you already have in the cupboard that you can take so you can plan your meals.
Meal prep before you go
If you tend to throw out food when you get home, or spurge on eating out on your trip meal prepping may be your answer.
If you’ve planned out what you’re going to eat on your trip, then you can take it one step further and pre-prepare some of your meals ahead of time. Chop up and freeze some veggies or prepare all the raw food for a one pot meal, pop it in your reusable zip lock bags and pop it in the freezer. This way if you’re tired at the end of your day all you need to do is cook the food rather than spending time prepping it.
Cook meals that can be reheated on the stove top
We tend to just throw out leftovers while camping because we don’t have a microwave to reheat it. Consider meals like spaghetti, soups, casseroles, or curries that can be put back in a saucepan and reheated on the stove/fire to be enjoyed again. Purchase some collapsible silicone food storage containers and utilise them for your leftovers.
Be conscious of how you pack your camping fridge
If you're using a cooler with ice or have a fridge that gets water in the bottom over time, be conscious of how you stack your food. Consider freezing meat in watertight containers and place them at the bottom of the cooler. Fruit and veg don't last as well in super cold conditions so be sure to put them at the top of your cooler or in the top shelf of your camping fridge. Using silicone zip lock bags to help prevent water getting in your food helps as well and I've found them far more effective than disposable ones are keeping water out.
To summerise, the following tips can help you reduce your waste:
- Plan out your meals (including snacks and drinks).
- Check what you have in the fridge, freezer and pantry.
- Meal prep or prepare your veg before you go.
- Choose meals that you can save and reheat on the stove top.
- Be conscious of how you store your food and pack your fridge/cooler.
We hope these tips help you reduce your food waste on your next camping trip!
Got any great tips? Leave a comment below and share with our community how you like to reduce your food waste at camp.