At home we often make up bulk meals so we can freeze leftovers for later or to take to work the next day. In a campervan this isn’t often ideal.
While we were lucky enough to have a fridge in our van, we still preferred not to have leftovers for more than a day or two.
Simon works in the food health industry so he’s pretty cautious like this anyway. Plus it can be hard to store leftovers unless you have proper containers or bags to use.
Make sure you pack or buy somezip lock resealable bags for storing food. This will help. Otherwise aim to purchase smaller portions of your ingredients to avoid waste.
5. Clean Up Quickly
If you have a fully equipped campervan with a sink and running water, you still want to be cautious about your usage. We cleaned up straight after meals, even while the pans were still warm to make it easier to avoid baked on food.
If you do forget to clean up quickly, add some hot water to your pans and soak for 10 minutes then clean. It will require less elbow grease this way.
Avoid large food scraps going down the sink too as you don’t want to end up with a blockage in your grey water tank. Eww!
CAMPERVAN BREAKFAST IDEAS
Breakfast can be an easy option in a campervan if you have a fridge. You can pretty much have what you’d eat for breakfast at home.
For breakfast, we stuck with similar food to what we have at home with our favourite cereals.
Cereal is a quick, minimal prep and low mess option before getting back on the road the next morning.
Although we ran out of cereal on our second last day so the kids final breakfast meal was Maggi 2 Minute Noodles. I just couldn’t! Yuck!
For lunches, aim for meals you can make without a lot of fuss or cooking needed. Sandwiches and wraps are a great option and typically inexpensive too.
Get some different cold meats, cheese and salads for a quick lunch stop between travelling to new destinations.
Tip: No-cook meals are an easy option and there are plenty of ideas for recipes and foods that won’t require any cooking!
Cheese platters are another simple lunch grazing option and one that we did for dinner a couple of times too.
There are some incredible cheese varieties in New Zealand, which go down very nicely with some New Zealand wine. Add some crackers and you have one of the easiest meals ever!
If you are driving through Oamaru, be sure to stop in a Whitestone Cheese Factory. You can enjoy a cheese platter while you are there, or grab a few different cheeses for the road. We picked up a mixed pack of their cheeses plus their award winning blue cheese. So good!
This was one of our favourite dinners from our first campervan trip and a completely unplanned one – leftover tortilla wraps filled with shredded chicken, cheese and tomato, browned in the frying pan. So simple!
Recipe Idea – A meal we have at home sometimes when we want to use up some extra ingredients is a baked bean concoction – baked beans, tinned tomatoes and then whatever we have in the fridge. This usually includes bacon or ham, sausage, capsicum, onion, and a few eggs cracked in. Let it simmer on the stove until the eggs are cooked, then sprinkle some cheese on top and serve on toast. It’s better than it sounds!
Some of our favourite one pot camping meals for RV cooking:
Savoury mince in lettuce leaves
Pasta / spaghetti
Baked beans with leftovers (see above)
Sausages in bread / hot dogs
Make sure you have all the RV essentials to make your cooking in a campervan easier!
Camping meals for kids who can be picky do make things a bit harder. We are lucky that our kids love a lot of staples like pasta and rice. They love bland food.
This may mean cooking up your meals then adding the extra flavours after you serve the kids. Some small adjustments usually mean the meals are great for all members of the family.
CAMPING SNACKS AND BETWEEN MEALS
We stayed well stocked up with kid-friendly snacksduring our family campervan holiday too, as kids tend to eat when they are bored… rather than just when they are hungry.
This often meant our kids were apparently starving to death within half an hour of breakfast, simply because they were buckled into their seats while driving.
Non-messy snacks are ideal for while you are in travelling. Fruit like apples and bananas are perfect for snacking during transit or muesli bars work great too.
We did enjoy a few treats along the way though, including the delicious fudge we got in Akaroa. This type of thing we saved for an after dinner treat though, while winding down in the evening.
If you are looking for more recipe ideas for cooking in a campervan or caravan or even during your camping trip, here are some great camping recipe books to give you even more yummy meal ideas for the whole family:
Do you have a favourite camping recipe or meal idea? Tell us about it in the comments. We would love to know! And share this post to Pinterest via the image below! You can check out the rest of our campervan adventures.