We all know and love s’mores, but the world of camping desserts doesn’t need to end there. That’s why we’re sharing ten easy and delicious campfire treats to expand your repertoire. Whether you want to reward yourself after a long day of strenuous adventure sports, warm up the chilly evenings, or just make some sweet memories with your family, these ooey-gooey and perfectly spiced treats are just the thing.
If you’re living and traveling in a van, chances are you have a good kitchen setup and don’t need to cook over a campfire, but sometimes it’s fun to get back to basics. It may sound cliche, but nothing tastes better than simple food made around a crackling fire and savored in the crisp fall air. Plus you’ll get to spend quality time with your companions around the fire while you wait for your creations to cook.
From healthy goodies to decadent desserts, each treat on this list is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. The recipes use an inventive variety of tools and techniques, including skillets, skewers, grills, and aluminum foil packets. Read on for the details.
Welcome autumn with the tantalizing flavors of cinnamon, brown sugar, and butter–oh, and apples of course! These deconstructed apple pies make use of a crumble topping and individual foil packets that go straight into the campfire for hassle-free preparation and clean-up. While they might look a little different from your classic apple pie, an instantly-recognizable scent of nostalgia will waft up as soon as you open the steamy packets.
This recipe is one of the simplest on this list and certainly the healthiest. Just grab a cast iron grate or grill pan, some juicy peaches, and a few pantry staples you probably already have on hand. Within 15 minutes, you’ll have perfectly caramelized and warmed peach halves with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg. Level it up by pairing the peaches with yogurt and granola. This guilt-free treat also works great as a breakfast food.
While this recipe is also super simple, it’s a little more decadent. You’ll prepare thawed frozen cinnamon rolls in a decidedly innovative fashion–baking them individually over the fire on roasting sticks. Each person will get to toast their treats to the exact shade of golden they prefer. Then top the rolls with the provided cream cheese frosting for a craveable dessert. Easy-peasy!
Mouthwatering caramelized bananas are the star of the show here, while vanilla, cinnamon, and rum extract play supporting roles. This dish is just as good without the suggested poundcake and whipped topping if you’re trying to eat or travel light. Looking to impress your fellow campers with some pyrotechnics? Trade the foil packets for a cast iron pan and use real rum to flambé the bananas.
Get gourmet with this lightly sweet and zesty recipe. A Dutch baby is a large, baked eggy pancake that actually has German origins, not Dutch. You’ll bake it in a cast iron Dutch oven with hot coals below the pot and on its lid. Then liven up the fluffy pancake with fresh berries, powdered sugar, and a squeeze of lemon juice. This tasty creation is well suited for both breakfast and dessert.
This recipe utilizes the same Dutch oven setup to create a more American baked good–brownies. Satisfy your chocolate cravings with these indulgent, fudgy squares made with only three ingredients. The recipe is perfect for long or remote camping trips because it doesn’t call for any perishables like milk, butter, or eggs. Instead, the brownies are held together by a surprising secret ingredient, soda. You might have to try this one to believe it.
Part of the fun of s’mores is letting everyone toast and assemble their own treats. If you’re looking for the same kind of experience but want to mix things up a bit, you’ll love this recipe. Kids and adults alike will enjoy assembling skewers with cubes of premade pound cake, juicy pineapple, and maraschino cherries for an ingenious and fuss-free take on pineapple upside-down cake. Then pop the skewers on a grill atop hot coals or let each person toast them individually over the fire.
The creamy chocolate and hazelnuts in Nutella are an iconic flavor combination alone, so keep things simple with a grilled Nutella sandwich–also known as heaven in a skillet. You’ll be able to whip it up after even the most tiring of hiking days and replenish your lost calories with this recipe’s warm, crispy, melty goodness.
This recipe takes two delicious treats–apple pie and French toast–and rearranges them into something completely new. Despite this innovation, the recipe is quite camping-friendly thanks to its use of premade apple pie filling and white bread. Fry the rolls in a cast iron skillet and dust with cinnamon sugar. Your taste buds will thank you.
This recipe requires special metal skewers with small cups on the end to cook the tart shells in the campfire, but these skewers will be a good investment. Once you’ve toasted the mini tart cups, fill them with anything from pudding to whipped cream, fruit compotes to chocolate. The endless potential for customization means you can experiment with new flavor combinations on every camping trip.
Whichever recipe strikes your fancy, we hope you get to try it out on a camping trip soon. Looking for tasty treats of the breakfast variety? Check out “The Best Van Life Breakfast: Pancakes 8 Ways.”
Want to enjoy more homemade meals in nature? It might be time to join the van revolution. Van life allows you to seek out stunning campsites off the beaten path and stay for longer than you would when tent camping. You’ll get to savor al fresco meals and campfire cooking while staying in complete comfort with all of your cooking supplies on board.
At Rec Van, we carry a wide range of new and used camper vans from brands you can trust. We’re happy to help you find the perfect van for your needs, so don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.