We are about to embark on our first Camping Adventure of the year and with a little planning, staying Keto won’t be a problem.
We are “tent” campers and keeping it simple is our motus operandi when heading out into the woods.
Camping is kind of a “thang” here in Colorado so I thought that some ideas about how to stay Keto while doing it could help.
We used to pack some pretty carb laden foods when we journeyed off into the wilderness…chips, hamburger buns, s’more ingredients, soda, you get the picture.
These are things you might already know but it helps to have everything in one place so that you don’t fall off of the Keto Wagon on your vacation…or experience any awful carb hangovers because you forgot to pack enough Keto Friendly foods.
There is no need to worry if you are new to Keto and going on your first low carb camping trip with the family. You’ve got this.
Camping and the Ketogenic Lifestyle go hand in hand…minus the marshmallows. Fat burners need less food (which means less prepping and carting stuff to the campsite) and and your stable Keto energy levels will only make your adventure more enjoyable.
If you have been Keto for a while now, you know what you like to eat and what you like to snack on.
But, I doubt you want to spend half of your morning figuring out how to make Keto Cream Cheese Pancakes over a campfire so, simple is better. Unless of course you are camping in an RV…and even then, I doubt you want to spend a lot of time cooking while everyone else is hanging out in the great outdoors and having a good time.
When we camp or even do day trips into the woods we don’t fuss a bunch about food. Keeping it simple really makes the trip more enjoyable for everyone.
But, there are a few things to consider before you pack up and go.
Are you already in the Keto Habit? (Adapted Fat Burner)
If so, great! Keto meals are much richer in fat and calories and take up much less space in your cooler.
Plus, it will be easier for you to stay in Ketosis without fidgeting around and trying to track every single thing you put in your mouth. You know your calorie/macro needs by now and can do Lazy Keto for the weekend without bloating up on carbs.
If you are brand new to Keto you need to consider whether or not going camping is ideal.
I am not in any way saying that you can’t go camping while in the throws of the Keto Flu…but I doubt you’ll want to.
So, for the sake of realistic expectations I am just going to assume that no one is going to start the Keto Diet while they are camping…
If you still new to the Keto Diet or have questions about transitioning smoothly, you should check out Thom’s No Nonsense Keto Guide and pay attention to his tips about how to avoid the Keto Flu. It has recipes and meal plans to get you into the Keto Habit before you go on vacation.
And, read this post about supplements because your energy expenditure is going to much different while you’re camping.
Hiking and even just sitting next to the lake sweating affect you differently when you are in Ketosis.
You should pay particular attention to your hydration and electrolyte needs. No one wants to ruin a perfectly good trip with a fainting spell, headache or fatigue.
Water and salt are going to become very important to keep you feeling fabulous and focused.
But, you don’t need a lot of fussy supplements…..
The two supplements that I would recommend to take camping with you are:
- Electrolytes to keep you feeling focused and fabulous.
- MCT Oil or Coconut Oil for your morning bulletproof coffee to give you tons of energy.
And, this isn’t really a supplement but it’s a good time to remind you about activated charcoal for stomach upset or another type of anti-diarrhea medicine.
Why? Because it sucks to have to search around for anti-diarrhea medicine when you are already experiencing symptoms. It can be disastrous. I mean, think about it.
Sorry, but its important. This concludes the end of the potty talk portion and you can stop feeling uncomfortable now.
Consider Your Camping Style
- If you like to cook in the woods then you are going to need to bring two coolers. One for drinks and another for food.
Raw meat spoils faster.
The last thing you need is a bout of food poisoning because Little Timmy or whoever kept getting into the cooler for water and your chicken went off.
Freeze the meat and keep frozen water bottles in the cooler so that everything stays somewhat dry, cold and no one will be getting into it a million times to get drinks out.
This will only work for a couple of days so if you are camping for longer than that there will be grocery store trips involved.
- Even if you prep and freeze your food so you just have to heat and eat, you’re still going to need two coolers. But, the risk of food poisoning is much less likely because cooked meat lasts longer and isn’t as easily set “off”.
I really can’t stress enough how much easier this will be in just logistical terms alone. We quit trying to pack cartons of raw eggs about a decade ago because quite frankly it was a huge pain in my @$$ to make sure they made it intact.
Not even mentioning the cooking…..and cleaning up eggy pans so bears & raccoons don’t come around and do the rob-and-wreck-it dance.
We camp with a tent and don’t have a fridge to store eggs in. We also stopped packing up the camping stove because if you play your cards right, the flame of the fire pit is enough. (It’s also one less thing to clean, pack and unpack later).
The raw bacon and eggs thing is out and we pre-cook sausage & egg burritos or bacon & egg burritos for breakfast, and then we roll them in foil and freeze them.
You can thaw them and warm them on the fire.
It’s easy and everyone in our crew likes them.
Make Ahead Sausage and Egg Breakfast Burritos Recipe:
- Low-carb Tortillas
- 1 pound sausage
- 1 pound shredded cheese
- 1 dozen eggs
- Brown the sausage, scramble the eggs and build six breakfast burritos with the desired amount of cheese.
- Wrap them in foil and store in the freezer until you are ready to pack your cooler.
- Don’t forget to pack your favorite hot sauce. ( Most don’t have to be refrigerated).
- Toss them on top of the grate in your fire pit and heat them up next to your morning coffee.
(Macros will vary by the size and brand of tortillas you use. Use this calculator to figure out the macros if you don’t already have an app).
You can do the same for dinner if you want to…..
Make Ahead Beef and Cheese Burritos Recipe:
- Low carb tortillas
- One pound Ground Beef
- Desired seasonings ( I like chili powder, salt, cumin and pepper)
- One Pound shredded cheese
- Brown the ground beef with the seasonings.
- Build the burritos with cheese.
- Tightly wrap in aluminum foil and store in the freezer until you are ready to pack your cooler.
- Toss them on top of the grate in your fire pit to heat up.
- Add hot sauce as desired.
Alternatively, you could just freeze the browned ground beef in a foil packet. Heat it up on the grate or on your camping stove and build your burritos with whatever toppings you brought if you like lettuce leaf shells, tomatoes, sour cream and whatnot.
Foil Packet Meals
Foil packet meals are a lifesaver when camping. Just add your cooked chicken, beef or pork to the foil and whatever veggies you like. Freeze and heat it up with the same method I described for the burritos.
The options for this method are endless.
Thom is working on making Mozzarella Chicken as I write this and I think that would make a fantastic foil packet camping meal.
This can work for cooked burgers too! All you need is the sauce and veggies. You could even make some super easy Two Minute Keto Buns ahead of time and bring them with you.
If you haven’t already, try the sauce that goes with the In-N-Out Cheeseburger salad. It’s freaking fantastic and low-low carb.
A word about utensils….
I understand that no one wants to do a bunch of dishes while they’re camping.
And, if you have a big crew than this won’t work but I bought this handy picnic backpack years ago and it has everything you need (even reusable wine glasses so you can be fancy if that’s your gig).
It saves our landfills from being overloaded with one use plastics and it’s easy and convenient to use. It’s been the best camping/hiking/picnicking purchase that we have ever made.
Just check it out and see if it will work for you. It’ll make you feel good too. You’ll rest easier knowing that you are doing what you can for your planet. ( End Colorado hippie chick scene).
Whether the whole family is low carb or you are just going it alone its important to take PLENTY of snacks.
I kid you not when I say that I saw someone in one FB group (not mine) ask if it is okay to “lick potato chips” and stay in Ketosis. (She forgot Keto snacks on her camping trip, and inspired this post).
First of all…LOL. That makes as much sense as a recovering alcoholic licking a beer can or an ex-smoker chewing on an unlit cigarette filter. That wont work.
I bet she had a hell of a carb hang-over because you know she didn’t stop at licking the chips.
Keto snacks are delicious and even if your kids claim that they don’t want your “Keto” food you can bet they will break into your stash.
Here are just a few ideas that are easily portable and will keep cravings at bay:
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Moon Cheese (no refrigeration needed)
- Ingredients for ham, pickle & cream cheese roll ups
- Fresh veggies (Crudites)
- Smoked meat
- Beef Jerky
- Fat bombs
- These Mini cookies
- Pork Rinds
- Keto Bark
- Atkins Bars
- Nut Butters
- Keto Friendly Booze (moderation is key)
- Iced Tea
- Sparkling Water
- Keto Approved Berries
- Deli meat and cheese roll ups
- Chicken wings (Precooked)
- Mushrooms for roasting instead of marshmallows (Just try it)
- Hard boiled eggs
- Homemade Keto Chocolate Chip Cookies
And, remember that when you are on a family camping trip you are most likely going to have a store available if you need it.
That’s it for now beautiful Keto People! I hope you have a wonderful Summer and fantastic camping stories to share on our Facebook Page!
And, don’t forget extra snacks for your best friend…
They burn more calories while camping too.