Camping Desserts

When most think of camp cooking, desserts are either an afterthought or totally forgotten. After all, it’s difficult and time-consuming enough just preparing main dishes for your camping party. You’ve got limited resources to work with and techniques to use, and getting everyone fed naturally takes precedence over satisfying their sweet tooth.

Thus, candy bars and sugary granola snacks become dessert staples for many campers. And while these are good in their own right, the tipping point between a good camping trip and a truly memorable one might just be a single fantastic dessert.

Luckily, those archaic s’mores and stale packaged sweets aren’t the only treats that can be dished out while camping. In fact, there are many dessert recipes perfect for the few amenities and limited time allotment in a camping environment. The following “cream of the crop” camping desserts have simple ingredients, are easy and quick to make, and will surely have everyone in your camping party pleading for seconds. Be sure to prepare accordingly.

Apple Crisp

  • Apples, peeled and sliced
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup quick oats
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Fill Dutch Oven half way up with apples. Combine brown sugar, flour, oats and cinnamon. Cut butter into mixture. Spread mixture over apples. Cover and cook about 45 minutes or until apples are soft

  • Smores
  • Marshmallows
  • Hersheys chocolate bars
  • Graham crackers
  • Grill fork or stick

Toast marshmallow over campfire. Place toasted marshmallow on top of graham cracker and piece of chocolate. Top with another piece of chocolate and graham cracker.

Fudge Striped Smores – Submitted by Sue Aszmann

  • 1 package of marshmallows
  • 1 package of fudge striped cookies

Roast marshmallows on an open fire. Place roasted marshmallow between (2) fudge striped cookies. Enjoy!

M&M Smores – Submitted by Deb

  • Marshmallows
  • M&M’s
  • Graham crackers

Toast marshmallow. Blow to cool. Pop off toasty top. Roll in a bowl of M&M’s. Squish between two graham crackers.

Peach Cobbler

  • Large can of sliced peaches in heavy syrup
  • Bisquick

Drain off syrup. Save 1/4 cup of this syrup. Mix the 1/4 cup of syrup with Bisquick until it forms a batter type consistency. Pour batter back over sliced peaches in the can. Place lid over mix. Set can into hot coals. Cook until flour has formed hard dumplings.

Banana Boat

  • Banana
  • Hersheys chocolate bar or chocolate chips
  • Marshmallows or mini marshmallows
  • Heavy duty aluminum foil

Cut your banana down the middle. Leave it in the peal. Stuff with chocolate and marshmallows. Wrap in aluminum foil and place in hot coals for about 5-10 minutes. Turn and rotate often.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

  • 1 can pineapples (6 oz)
  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 square of margarine
  • 2 yellow cake mixes

Mix cake mix according to directions. Line the Dutch Oven with aluminum foil. Place oven onto the heat, level it and melt the margarine in the oven. When melted, add the brown sugar. Stir. Add the pineapples and the pecans. This is the glaze. Pour prepared cake mix on top of the glaze. This dessert doesn’t require a lot of heat on the bottom, just enough to brown the glaze–8 pieces of charcoal should be plenty. Bake for about 25 minutes. Check every 15 minutes and when golden brown, test to see if it is done. Take it off the heat and lift the cake out of the oven by the aluminum foil. Put a pan on it and turn it over quickly so that the glaze is on top. Remove the foil.

Hobo Popcorn

  • Popcorn
  • Oil
  • Heavy duty aluminum foil
  • Stick

In the middle of a 18″ x 18″ piece of aluminum foil, place 1 teaspoon of oil and 1 tablespoon of popcorn. Bring foil corners together to make a pouch. Secure the edges of the foil but leave plenty of room for the popcorn to pop. Tie the pouch to a stick and hold the pouch over the hot coals. Shake constantly until all the popcorn has popped. Add butter and salt to taste.

Pecan Pie

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup Bisquick baking mix
  • 1/4 cup margarine, softened
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Grease pie plate. Sprinkle pecans in plate. Beat remaining ingredients until smooth. Pour into pie pan. Put 1 inch diameter foil balls in the bottom of your Dutch Oven to keep the pie pan off the bottom ( helps to keep food from burning and distributes the heat more evenly). Put the pie pan into the Dutch Oven and bake approximately 50-60 minutes or until knife, when inserted into the center, comes out clean.

Fried Camp Pies – Submitted by T. Morang

  • 1 can (favorite flavor) fruit pie filling
  • 1 can large (like Grands) biscuits
  • Margarine or Butter
  • Cinnamon Sugar

Roll out one biscuit, place large spoon of filling in center of dough, fold over and crimp edges. Fry in butter or margarine on low to medium heat until done, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar as soon as you remove from heat. Eat carefully! Fillings do get hot! Warning habit forming!

Applesauce Gingerbread Cake – Submitted by a reader

  • 1 14 oz. can of applesauce
  • 1 package of gingerbread cake mix

Pour applesauce in bottom of dutch oven or cast iron skillet. Pour dry cake mix over applesauce. Cover and cook until moisture from applesauce has steamed the cake. Let cool approx. 20-30 mins. Serve warm.

Mock Toasted Angel Cake – Submitted by Paula Sheagley

  • Cut day-old unsliced (loaf) bread into 2-inch squares
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 box shredded coconut

Place bread squares on a stick. Dip squares in sweetened condensed milk, then in coconut. Toast over fire. Be ready for a real treat!

Sticky Buns – Submitted by Paula Sheagley

  • 5 Tablespoons oleo
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons corn syrup
  • Pecan halves
  • 2 8-ounce packages biscuits (refrigerated)
  • Cinnamon
  • Sugar

Combine 3 tablespoons oleo, brown sugar and syrup in pie pan. Heat to bubbly on hot coals. Sprinkle with pecans. Melt rest of oleo. Dip one side of each biscuit in oleo. Put on waxed paper, butter side up. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Put 2 biscuits together. Arrange on syrup mixture. Cover with 2nd pie pan. Seal pans with double strip of foil. Cook over coals for 15 minutes on each side.

Pie Iron Sticky Buns – Submitted by a reader

Use canned biscuits. Mash two together. Roll in mixture of brown sugar, nuts and cinnamon. Spray pie iron with butter flavored Pam. Cook 1 minute per side over hot coals.

No Bake Cookies – Submitted by Wilma (Mama) Young

  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. cocoa
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 cups oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter

Mix sugar and cocoa in a pan. Add butter and milk. Bring to a boil. Boil 2 minutes while stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and peanut butter. Stir. Put mixture in a bowl containing the oatmeal. Mix the oats into the mixture until they are coated. Drop by spoonfuls onto aluminum foil. Let cool.

For a variation use crunchy peanut butter.

Doughboy on a Stick – Submitted by a reader

  • 1 package of regular biscuits
  • Cinnamon and sugar
  • Butter

Take the biscuit and wrap it around a stick by spiraling it from the top and work your way down. The thinner the biscuit is on the stick the quicker the inside will cook so you don’t burn the outside. Cook over the fire until done. Roll in butter and sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar all over it.

Camp Pies – Submitted by Donna

  • Bread
  • Butter
  • Canned pie filling

Butter bread and place face down on a round pie iron. Add canned pie filling. Put another piece of bread on top of the filling, with butter side out. Close pie iron tightly. Fry in campfire till nice and brown on both sides. Delicious!

Campfire Muffins – Submitted by Kate Taylor

  • 6 Oranges
  • 2 (7 oz.) packages of muffin mix, any flavor

Cut oranges in half. Scoop out the orange segments to eat alone or to use in a fruit salad. Reserve the hollow peel shells. Prepare the muffin mix according to the package directions. Fill the orange peel cups half full of batter. Wrap each one loosely with heavy duty aluminum foil. Place in hot coals, making sure that the batter side stays up. Cook 5-10 minutes until muffins are done. Adding a few cranberries to the batter adds excellent flavor and goes well with the orange. Makes 12 (use 3 oranges per package of muffin mix).

Also, could use prepared cake mix instead of muffin mix

Campfire Baked Cinnamon Apples – Submitted by Kristine Turkin

  • 1 medium Apple
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. sugar
  • Heavy duty aluminum foil

Cut the apple from top to bottom at three different positions making sure not to cut all the way through the bottom. Place apple on a piece of heavy duty aluminum foil to wrap the apple in. Open the apple similar to a flower. Add the cinnamon and sugar to the center of the apple. Wrap the apple in foil, making sure it is securely closed. Place in campfire coals for approximately 20-30 minutes.

Also try using brown sugar instead of the cinnamon and sugar

Chocolate Fondue – Submitted by a reader

  • Small sauce pan
  • 2 large bags semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup fresh or canned milk
  • 1/4 cup orange liqueur or whatever liqueur you like

Cut up chunks of the following: apples, bananas, pears, dried apricots, blueberry or banana muffins, rice crispy treats, pretzels, popcorn, marshmallows, strawberries, etc.

In a small sauce pan melt chocolate with milk and liqueur on grill over campfire stirring frequently. Take chunks and dip into chocolate. This can also be made with white chocolate chips, or caramels.

Easy Doughnuts – Submitted by Lisa C.

  • 2 cans or more of Pillsbury Biscuits (or similar brand)
  • Oil
  • Cinnamon sugar
  • Confectionery sugar

Put some oil in a sauce pan and heat until hot. (Drop a small piece of dough in it – it’s hot enough when the piece sizzles.) Carefully drop biscuits into oil and cook for 2 or 3 minutes per side. Remove from oil and dry for a minute. While it’s still warm, put it in a paper bag with a cup of cinnamon sugar or confectionery sugar (or whatever other topping you can think of) and shake. Cover until ready to eat. Best when served warm.

White Hot Chocolate

  • 2/3 cup white baking chocolate, chopped
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • Whipped cream

Heat 1/2 cup milk, cinnamon and white chocolate in a sauce pan until the chocolate melts. Add the rest of the milk and heat it up till it is warm/hot. Add vanilla. Serve with whipped cream on top.

Coffee Can Ice Cream – from Backwoods Bound

Supplies:

  • 1 – 1 lb coffee can with lid
  • 1 – 3 lb coffee can with lid
  • duct tape for lid
  • crushed ice
  • rock salt

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • Chopped nuts, or pieces of fruit – optional

Combine ingredients in a clean 1 lb coffee can with a tight fitting plastic lid. Tape lid for added security. Place 1 lb coffee can in 3 lb coffee can. Pack crushed ice around the smaller can. Pour almost 1 cup of rock salt over the ice. Replace lid on 3 lb can. Roll the can back and forth on the floor or sidewalk for 10 minutes. Remove the inside can carefully. Keep salt solution out of the small can. Remove lid of small can and stir ice cream with a rubber spatula. Replace and retape lid. Drain ice water from larger can and place smaller can inside. Repack with ice and salt. Roll back and forth 5 – 10 minutes more depending on how firm you like your ice cream. Makes about 3 cups.

Cream Puffs – Submitted by Amy Nohl

  • Biscuit dough (Pillsbury Grands, etc.)
  • Large Marshmallows
  • A stick
  • A campfire

Open the biscuit roll and take out a biscuit. Open it up and stuff a marshmallow inside. Close the biscuit up so you can’t see the marshmallow. Put it on a stick and roast until golden or until desired. Enjoy!!!

Here’s a good camping treat for people burned out on S’mores! – Submitted by Julie Uelmen

  • Take a banana and peel off one strip of peel (where the banana curves)
  • Where you took off the peel, slice out a piece of banana almost all the way down and set it aside
  • Fill opening with peanut butter
  • Place 2 or 3 pieces of chocolate on top of peanut butter

Cover the peanut butter and chocolate with the banana piece you cut out, cover that with the piece of peel, wrap very tightly in tin foil, and cook on a rack over your campfire 10 minutes.

Hmmmm eat with a spoon…yummy good!

Broomstick Bread – Submitted by Laurinda Marti

  • Vanilla Pudding
  • Fruit Pie Filling
  • Grands Biscuits
  • Broomstick Handle

Stretch refrigerated biscuits down over a broomstick handle so that it forms a “cup” shape. Cook biscuit over fire and layer with pudding and pie filling inside. Tasty treat and kids LOVE it!

Campfire Upside Down Cakes – Submitted by Cathy Bolton

  • Plain cake donuts
  • Pineapple rings
  • Brown sugar
  • Squirt butter
  • Pam

Spray piece of foil with Pam. Slice donut in half. Place pineapple ring on one half. Pack brown sugar on top of the pineapple (all the way around) and squirt butter on top of brown sugar. Place other half of donut on top and wrap in foil. Cook on rack above coals for about 5 minutes or so, checking periodically so the bottom doesn’t burn.

Delicious!!

Campfire Chocolate Eclairs – Submitted by Kim

  • Tube of crescent rolls
  • Vanilla pudding
  • Chocolate frosting
  • Foil

Wrap one of the crescent rolls around the end of a camp fork making sure you close up the very end. Loosely wrap with foil. Cook over the fire until you end up with a golden brown long tube with one open end. Fill with vanilla pudding and spread chocolate frosting on top.

Jam Busters – submitted by Pat and Marlene

  • 2 slices of bread with crusts cut off
  • Spread one slice with favourite jam and put other slice on topCut “sandwich” into quartersdip each quarter into prepared batter (simply flour and water mixed to coating consistency)deep fry in oil that is heated in a pot over the campfireonce it floats, take out of hot oil with strainerroll in sugar-cinnamon mixture (4 parts sugar to 1 part cinnamon)

    Other Dessert Suggestions:

    • Instant cheesecake
    • Cookies
    • Cake/pie
    • Brownies
    • Pudding
    • Fruit
    • Roasted marshmallows

    Other Snack Suggestions:

    • GORP Trail Mix – Chex, M & Ms, peanuts, small pretzels, dried fruit etc.
    • Granola bars
    • Dried fruit
    • Pop Tarts
    • Fruit pies
    • Candy bars
    • Cup of fruit or pudding
    • Crackers
    • Bagels
    • Peanuts

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