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Paleo camping – yet another classic summer activity that takes on a new twist when you are on a special diet. Whether you have food allergies or are just trying to be healthy, camping while Paleo is definitely different. These hobo packets are sure to make a positive impression though!
A few years ago I wrote a post about a camping trip we took. Ironically enough, it was about Rifle Falls, Colorado – which is where we went again this past weekend. We actually DO go camping in lots of places, and haven't been back to Rifle between these trips. Just kind of funny that I must feel some urge to blog about it each time we go there.
This time though, I took lots of video and compiled them into a vlog so you can really get a feel for the trip and see what we ate for our meals and snacks. You can especially see how beautiful the falls are! After watching, keep reading for the recipe for the Ground Beef Hobo Foil Packets (which was dinner on night 2).
Can't see the video? Go to Paleo Camping in Rifle Falls, CO
When we first get to our campsites we always love to have some Bacon Wrapped Dates. I make these in the oven at home before we leave, store them in the cooler, and then we just reheat them in a pan over the camp stove while setting up. It's just a delicious hit of sugar and fat that is so rejuvenating when you are setting up camp. Plus everything always tastes better outdoors. (Make at home: wrap pitted dates in 1/2 slice of bacon. Secure with a toothpick and then bake in the oven at 425 F for 15-20 minutes or until the bacon is done. Put into a plastic bag or container and store in the cooler until time to cook while camping. Reheat in a pan over medium heat until warm – watch out because they can burn easily)
On the first night we had BBQ chicken and pineapple skewers and veggie skewers. I used chicken thighs (which in hindsight wasn't the smartest idea – smarter to use chicken breasts because they stay on the skewers better), Bone Suckin bbq sauce which is pretty clean (not completely Paleo, but I didn't have time to make my own sauce), and pineapple on the meat skewers. On the veggie skewers I used zucchini, mushrooms, red pepper, yellow pepper, yellow squash, and onions, and then made a pesto to dip in from basil, arugula, kale, olive oil, and garlic. Before grilling the veggies my husband poured a bit of olive oil on them to prevent sticking. This all was cooked over the fire for about 20 minutes or so.
Dessert night one was s'mores. I've mentioned this before in other posts, but there are certain things that I just think are important for kids to experience, and roasting marshmallows over a fire and then having s'mores are just one of those. I haven't found any marshmallows to melt right over the fire other than these Jet-puffed kind, so while not made with great (and certainly NOT Paleo) ingredients, I think it's fine for the 3-4 camping trips we take a year. That, some gluten-free graham crackers, and 85% dark Green & Blacks chocolate make up the trifecta.
Dinner on night 2 was these AMAZING Paleo Ground Beef Hobo Foil Packets that we cooked over the fire. The recipe for these is at the bottom of this post. These were SO good and so comforting as the chilly night air started to creep in. Man, I want to eat these every night!
Filled with ground beef meatballs, eggs, tomatoes, bacon, green chilis, hash browns, salt and pepper and then topped with a bit of mayo. Yum! Again, the full recipe is below at the bottom of this post.
My kids love camping 🙂 Makes me a proud mama.
Dessert on night 2 tasted a lot better than it looks. It was peaches topped with ghee, some pecans, almonds, shredded coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. At home, before the trip, I pulsed a handful of pecans, almonds, and shredded coconut in the food processor for a few seconds to make a topping and then mixed it with about 1 tsp of cinnamon and 1/4 tsp each of the rest of the spices. I added about 1 teaspoon of ghee over the pitted and halved peaches and then added the topping and wrapped the packets up and stored them in a plastic bag in the cooler.. This dessert is completely Paleo and gluten-free and you could use coconut oil in place of the ghee. (This “recipe” was for 2 whole peaches, which served 4). Cook over indirect heat on the fire for about 30-45 minutes.
Breakfast on day 3 – both breakfasts on this trip had some gluten-free but not Paleo items. This one was Van's gluten-free waffles. While I try to eat Paleo as much as I can because that's how I personally feel my very best, it sometimes just doesn't happen. I had a plan to make Paleo waffles and french toast before I left and I just ran out of time. So frozen waffles it was! Topped with some maple syrup, fresh berries, and accompanied by scrambled eggs, bacon, and coffee. (see the video above for a tip about bringing eggs with you)
Ok – finally the recipe I've been promising!
Ground Beef Hobo Foil Packets (Paleo, Whole30)
- 6 cups Frozen Hashbrowns (or freshly made)
- 8 slices Bacon ((sugar-free for Whole30))
- 2 cups Cherry Tomatoes (sliced in half)
- 1 pound Ground Beef
- 2 4 oz cans Mild Green Chilis
- 8 Eggs
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Pepper
- Mayo (optional – for topping)
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix the ground beef with 1/2 tsp salt and the pepper. Form into 8 meatballs and place on the baking sheet. Cook in the oven for 15 minutes.
- Cook the bacon until done in a pan (or you can also cook it in the oven at 425 for around 15-20 min).
- Assemble the packets by placing a large sheet (about 1.5 ft long) of aluminum foil on the counter. I add a sheet of parchment on top so my food doesn't touch the foil, but it's up to you. Put 1.5 cups of frozen hashbrowns on the bottom, sprinkle with some salt, and then break 2 slices of bacon up and sprinkle them over the hashbrowns. Then add 1/4 cup of cherry tomatoes, 1/2 can of mild green chilis, and finally, 2 ground beef meatballs (wait until these have cooled enough to handle). Then wrap the packet up and place in a labeled plastic bag. Repeat 3 more times. Store in the cooler. It's ok that the frozen hashbrowns are thawing 🙂
- Into a glass jar or other container, crack 8 eggs. Try your best to keep them whole but don't worry if the yolks break. Also add some mayo to a small container. Store these in the cooler as well.
At the campsite:
- Carefully open each foil packet and pour 2 eggs from the jar into them. Reseal the packets.
- Once the fire has gotten good and hot and you have a lot of red hot embers, place the packets, seam side up, over the grate or onto the embers (off of the direct flame). Cook for 10 minutes and then flip over. After 20 minutes, take one out of the fire and check to make sure the egg has cooked. If not, cook longer, otherwise, carefully open, top with some mayo and enjoy!
Make Paleo easier, faster, less expensive, and way more fun with all the resources in my Freebie Library! Click on the picture to find out how to access it.
What an amazing camping meals ! You are so organized. I don’t know if i’d be able to prepare so many meals while cooking outdoor. This is awesome !
Thanks ChihYu 🙂 I’m not always that organized, trust me, haha!
These hobo packets look so good! While my husband loves camping, I do not 😉 I think these would make a fun dinner on our bonfire in our backyard!
They totally could work on a backyard bonfire. I’ve thought about just even doing them on the grill. If we weren’t going again soon I would definitely try!
Dang, you guys eat well while camping! Looks like so much fun and reminds me that I need to go camping soon too!
Yeah, we do eat well camping. We actually were laughing because I spent hours in the kitchen the day before we left cooking up all these great meals and then for dinner we had a pretty unappetizing, boring meal because I was too tired to cook! ha!
Love love love this idea! Thank you! I am sending this to some camping friends of ours too!
Thanks so much Renee!
Great idea for a camping trip. I’m pretty inventive eating and cooking outdoors, but it’s great to feel inspired to keep things interesting when I just want to resort to the ol’ classics. Looks fun and delicious!
Thanks Irena – you sure are pretty inventive with your cooking outdoors. Your camping post through Europe is one I refer to often!
Looks great Michele!
You’re the person needed in every camping group!
haha, that is such a compliment to me!! 🙂
some great tips for paleo eating while camping! Now I want to eat bacon wrapped dates and see the waterfalls!
Thanks Holley – it’s such a great place to camp!
Truth be told – I’m not that in to camping… but dangggg! That food looks delish, so SIGN ME UP!
Haha – you can go glamping and still eat these 🙂
These packets look awesome, thanks for sharing! I’m always looking for some tasty Paleo camping eats!
Looks like you had a fun adventure and lots of fun food! I think it’s awesome that you made bacon wrapped dates! That’s one of my favorite things ever. Yum!
They are sooo good!!