Feeding yourself and your fellow travelers while enjoying a camping trip can seem overwhelming sometimes, especially when leaving behind the convenience of the kitchen.
But it doesn’t have to be a stressful process putting together delicious meals thanks to your cast iron cookware. We’ve rounded up cast iron camping recipes for morning, noon, and night. Here’s a look at some of the best.
About Cast Iron Cookware
Cast iron cookware refers to any type of skillet, pan, dutch oven, or other item created via pouring molten iron into a mold. This results in a hefty, heavy-duty piece of cookware that holds heat exceptionally well.
Many people enjoy the durability of cast iron and how the well-cared-for items last for decades and provide a nearly nonstick finish. It can also easily withstand heat from a direct flame or coals, as people used it in an era before modern gas or electric cooking.
Are Cast Iron Pans Good for Camping?
Depending on the type of camping you do, cast iron pans can work great for your campfire cooking. Cast iron’s durability makes it an ideal choice for cooking over coals or open flame. And its ability to retain heat allows it to cook food even if simply set near coals.
Their durability during transport makes them a great choice. You won’t have to worry about damaging any special non-stick finishes or scratching stainless steel. Cast iron can take a beating without getting ruined. Plus, you can clean them with little or no water. Simply scour them, and wipe them clean.
However, cast iron pans may not be a good choice for backcountry camping or any camping that involves long-distance hiking due to their weight. This can dramatically affect your ability to carry your pack. In these situations, you should opt for more lightweight options.
Pro Tip: We have everything you need to know about cooking over a campfire.
15 of the Best Cast Iron Camping Recipes
You can do so much with cast iron camping recipes. These will keep you fed from morning to night with snacks in between. Here are some of our easy, delicious favorites that will make everyone around your campfire happy.
Breakfast Cast Iron Camping Recipes
Your cast iron cookware can work perfectly for starting the day with a full stomach, whether you prefer something sweet or savory, decadent or healthy. Here are some top options for breakfast.
1. Cast Iron Camping Donuts Recipe
Even the most dedicated donut-lovers may not know just how delicious a cast iron-made donut can taste in the morning. With just four ingredients, it’s as simple to prep and cook as it is delicious.
Just portion out biscuit dough and fry in oil over your fire or camping stove. Plus, you can customize your donuts with toppings like coconut, chocolate, icing, powdered sugar, and more.
2. Red Potato, Bell Pepper, and Spinach Breakfast Hash
You can make a simple breakfast hash to use up leftover ingredients. This recipe takes it up a notch, transforming a simple potato, pepper, and spinach mix into a savory camping breakfast delight.
And it only requires one pan! Enjoy protein and plenty of delicious vegetables to get your day off to an easy and healthy start.
3. Cast Iron Frittata
Eggs often make everyone’s favorite list, whether around the kitchen table or the campfire. This recipe lets you feed the entire campsite a cheesy, veggie-filled one-pan frittata in minutes.
Feel free to swap out veggies and cheeses according to your tastes and available ingredients. They also make great leftovers, making them an excellent choice for a quick lunch or dinner after a long day out in nature.
4. Cheesy Sausage Pull-Apart Breakfast Bake
You can find the best parts of this recipe right in the name. This simple cast iron camping recipe makes a delicious pull-apart, savory concoction. Just pile the ingredients into your cast iron pan.
Use pre-cooked sausage to make it even speedier. This breakfast bake keeps well and is also very hands-off to allow more time to relax with your fellow campers in the morning.
5. Steak and Sweet Potato Hash
Need something equal parts hearty and healthy before a day exploring the great outdoors? Steak and sweet potato hash requires minimal prep time for maximum flavor with just a handful of ingredients.
Add an egg for even more protein. Plus, you don’t need any fancy cooking skills — just fry your steak and stir your diced veggies. You can chow down in minutes.
Lunch and Dinner Cast Iron Camping Recipes
You can use your cast iron to quickly whip up a tasty lunch or dinner no matter what time it is. Here are some easy, tasty, and filling choices for everyone.
6. Campfire Nachos in a Cast Iron Skillet
For a simple, delicious, and completely customizable snack or meal, try this nacho cast iron camping recipe. The only requirement is a bag of chips — the cheese, salsa, olives, peppers, and other toppings are up to you!
Layer your nachos and ingredients, cover your cast iron pan in foil, and allow things to warm up and melt. Cook this one on or near coals instead of an open flame to ensure you don’t end up with burnt nachos.
7. One-Pot Protein Pasta
You may find yourself in need of a protein boost after a long day of hiking, biking, kayaking, or other strenuous outdoor activities. This pasta is a great choice and completely vegetarian, too.
This recipe swaps out traditional pasta for a delicious red lentil version brimming with protein. Add some garlicky kale and a jar of pasta sauce, and you’ve got a flavor-filled, one-pot cast iron camping recipe to feed the whole family.
8. Campfire Pizza Sandwiches
Is it possible to make pizza even more convenient? It sure is, with these campfire pizza sandwiches. You can make them in a pie iron, pan, or Dutch oven: just layer sauce, cheese, and pizza toppings between two English muffins. Then press them in your iron or with a spatula. In minutes you’ll get crispy grilled edges and a warm, gooey, flavor-filled center to satisfy that pizza craving.
Stuffed peppers can feel too time-consuming to make while away from home. Well, think again, thanks to this one-pot cast iron camping recipe. This deconstructed version of the typical stuffed pepper dish combines all the ingredients.
It even cooks the rice right alongside the other fillings. This dramatically cuts your prep and cooking time and reduces your dirty cookware to just a few items. Plus, you’ll sacrifice none of that incredible savory flavor, as it all remains in one dish.
10. Skillet Chicken Pot Pie
Most of us have encountered a camping trip where temperatures get unexpectedly chilly. You can warm your whole crew with this skillet chicken pot pie. Rather than messing with pie dough, you’ll cook your ingredients in your cast iron and top with canned biscuit dough for an easy, bready crust.
While it may require a bit more ingredients and prep work than some other cast iron camping recipes, you’ll end up with a dinner worth the work.
Dessert Cast Iron Camping Recipes
The cast-iron cooking fun doesn’t have to stop after dinner. Here are some of the best dessert choices for your favorite skillet or dutch oven.
If you crave something sweet, fruity, and simple to make, then try this triple berry cobbler. The berries take center stage, so pick a mix you particularly enjoy.
Then dress them up with some flour, sugar, and butter, and you’ve got a delicious dessert on the way. Serve it right out of your cast iron to keep it warm and for easy clean-up.
12. Banana Split S’mores Dip
Can’t decide between a sundae or s’mores? You no longer have to, thanks to this creative and tasty treat. Just combine your chocolate, marshmallows, bananas, and other toppings in your cast iron pan and cook over your coals or in your oven.
Put it out with some graham crackers for dipping, and watch how quickly this cast iron camping recipe disappears.
13. Death by Chocolate Skillet Brownie
This recipe may not actually kill you, but it’ll certainly send you to heaven with this three-chocolate delight. Bite into this fudgy, sweet, and cakey dessert.
While it may require more ingredients than some other cast iron camping recipes, chocolate or baked good lovers may devour it. Top it with some hot fudge and vanilla ice cream to complete the experience. You may not want to share.
14. Lazy Peach Cobbler
You know a recipe is easy when it’s got “lazy” right in the name. Just heat a Dutch oven over some coals, dump in your canned peaches, cover in cake mix and butter, and let it bake.
With just a minute or two of prep work, you can have a crowd-favorite dessert ready in less than an hour of cook time. This is a perfect choice for busy evenings when you’ve got lots of stuff going on around the campsite.
If you prefer giant cookies, this recipe will leave you smiling. You’ll use all of your typical cookie ingredients, but cook and mix them all in your cast iron skillet.
That means no mixing bowls or other dishware to clean up. And you can serve it right out of the skillet. With as little as 15 minutes of cooking time, you’ll love digging into this monster-sized dessert.
Pro Tip: Want even more dessert ideas to bring on your next camping adventure? Here are 11 camping desserts you need to try.
Enjoy These Cast Iron Recipes on Your Next Camping Trip!
Cast iron camping recipes can quickly and easily feed your fellow campers with minimal mess and maximum flavor.
These sturdy, reliable cookware pieces may become a key part of your campfire cooking setup. Use these recipes as a starting point to build your skills, and have fun experimenting with delicious, easy food ideas of your own.
Do you have any other favorite cast iron camping recipes?