7 Creative Ways to Eat Healthy While Camping or Cottaging

Looking forward to heading out to the cottage or campground this summer? Getting out into the woods near a lake or river†is a great way to switch up your regular routine by unplugging from technology, getting more active and spending time with family or friends. Unfortunately, it doesn’t necessarily serve as the best inspiration to stick to a healthy diet.

While there’s nothing terribly wrong with living it up a little and enjoying a sugary drink on the deck or a s’more by the campfire, it’s easier than you think to turn an entire trip into an all-out feast on processed foods. After all, processed foods are easier to transport and keep better than many fresh/natural foods. We all know that.

Luckily, if you get a little bit creative and take the time to plan ahead, you can still encourage everyone to stick to healthier foods without being too restrictive or taking all the fun out of summer vacation. Here area few great ideas that anyone can use.

1. Stock up on healthy foods that are portable and ideally don’t need to be cooked, refrigerated or frozen.

This should be number one on your healthy prep to-do list. Nuts and dried fruit are great to make into a yummy homemade trail mix, and fruits like apples and bananas are easy enough to take pretty much anywhere. Check out these 10 healthy and portable snack ideas for more.

2. Make your own healthy foodsthat are portable and ideally don’t need to be cooked, refrigerated or frozen.

Okay, so nuts and fruit†are one thing, but you can add more variety to your meals and snacks by doing some baking ahead of time. Bake a bunch of healthy muffins, make some†homemade whole grain bread or whip up a batch of†your own energy bars. These are all easy to store and bring along with you on your trip.

3. Freeze lots of water for drinking, and keep them†in your cooler.

Filling lots of bottles or containers with water and freezing them ahead of time is useful for two things. Firstly, they’ll help keep your refrigerated foods cold in your coolers, and secondly, they’ll encourage you to avoid turning to cans of soda or juice boxes by providing you with plenty of cold, drinkable water as the ice slowly melts.

4. Research local farmers markets to get the fresher stuff when you get there.

If you’re in for a long car trip, it’s often worth stopping by grocery stores when you’re closer to your location. An even better idea would be to look up nearby farmers market to get all the good stuff. Plan your meals around farm fresh, locally grown produce that can be cooked by campfire, on the barbecue, or eaten raw. The USDA has a National Farmers Market Directory you may want to use to do your research.

5.†Prep several healthy tinfoil meals ahead of time to throw on the fire or barbecue.

The magic of tinfoil makes healthy eating a breeze when you take the time to assemble meals ahead of time and store them properly. From veggies with olive oil to cheesy baked potatoes, pre-assembled tinfoil meals can help you avoid relying too much on veggie†burgers and sandwiches at every main meal. Six Sister’s Stuff has 30 delicious tinfoil recipes to check out.

6. Get creative with†tortillas.

Tortillas are great because they’re thin, flexible, easy to store and very versatile. Other than filling them with lots of delicious veggies for a yummy wrap, you can fill them up with nut butter and fruit for a sweet treat, or leave them flat to build your own healthy veggie pizzas over the fire or barbecue.

7. Swap out s’mores for healthier banana boats.

Let’s face it ó graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows aren’t exactly healthy. If you’re really trying to stick to better eating habits around the campfire, you could try roasting up a delicious banana boat instead! The less healthy banana boats are still made with chocolate and marshmallows, but Nutrition Stripped has a wonderful recipe with healthier banana boat filling alternatives like dark chocolate, coconut and hazelnuts.

One big positive of sticking to healthier meals and snacks over sugar and fat-filled processed foods while camping or visiting the cottage is that you’ll spend less time feeling bloated and lethargic so you can dedicate more of your time to having fun. Healthier eating will help you make the most of your precious time spent cottaging or camping this summer!

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Photo Credit: Mark Doliner


Marija M
Marija M7 months ago

tks for sharing

Danuta W
Danuta W7 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

Sue H
Sue H7 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

Peggy B
Peggy B7 months ago


Cindy S
Cindy Smith7 months ago

I dont eat animals

Cindy S
Cindy Smith7 months ago


Chrissie R
Chrissie R7 months ago

Thank you for posting.

Sonia M

Thanks for sharing

Jeanne Rogers
Jeanne R2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.