3 Delicious Recipes to Make this Summer

Three Curated Experts share their favorite recipes to make outside this summer, perfect for hungry anglers and famished campers alike!

A cast-iron pan lets off steam from its position on a campfire.

Photo by Casey Deviese

Cooking outside in the summer is a special experience. Maybe you’re staying out late, taking the time to make a delicious dinner in the still-warm evening breeze. Maybe you’re rolling out of your tent to wake to a yummy breakfast in the refreshing morning chill. No matter the situation, eating warm food in the fresh air is always enjoyable!

Three Curated Experts share their recipes for their favorite dishes to make outside this summer, ensuring that long days outdoors are properly rewarded with great food!

Campside Breakfast Burritos: Katie Maroney, Camping & Hiking Expert

A cast-iron pan with fried eggs, sausages, and a scramble next to tin foil with a tortilla on it, all on a grill.

Photo courtesy of pxfuel

Imagine this: you crawl out of your cozy tent into the crisp mountain air, just in time to watch the sun slowly rise off the horizon line until it finds its place high in the sky and begins to warm your face. Now imagine waking up to this tranquil scene AND realizing you have the most delicious, pre-made breakfast burrito waiting for you. What could be better?

If you are anything like me, you are always looking for the easiest food to take with you while camping. When I first started camping, I would always forget the most basic camp cooking item. One time, I made sure to bring my coffee press and freshly ground coffee that made my mouth water even as I was packing it into my bag, only to realize in the morning that I forgot to bring a cup—any type of container, really—to put this magical morning juice in. Another time, my husband and I brought leftover taco meat to heat up over the fire and we forgot forks to eat it with! Rookie mistakes, I suppose.

Since these slip-ups, I have learned that one thing is always true when camp cooking: simple is best. It really is. And simple recipes don’t mean they taste simple, either! Instead, simplicity offers a tasty and satisfying meal, while also negating the need for superfluous items (you know, like cups and utensils.)

So far, one of my absolute favorite and go-to camp recipes is breakfast burritos. The best part about this meal is that you can customize the recipe to fit your needs/preferences. For example, I have made these breakfast burritos for a group of ten and also for just two. Either way, it is a cheap and easy recipe to put together. This meal fits my “simple is best” mantra, because I make the burritos ahead of time, so all I have to do is heat them up in the morning over the fire. And, come on, who doesn’t love waking up to the smell of eggs over a fire?

Ingredients

  • Eggs (about 1-2 eggs per burrito)
  • Tortillas
  • Ground Italian sausage
  • Bacon
  • Bell pepper
  • Onion
  • Hashbrowns
  • Salt/pepper

You can substitute or take away any of these ingredients based on what you like. For example, my husband is a hunter, so we do a lot of antelope sausage mixed with a breakfast blend seasoning in lieu of store-bought sausage. The eggs are also a personal preference. I like to have more egg than anything else in my burritos, so if I am making enough burritos for a group of 10, I will use about 15 eggs. For the hashbrowns, I prefer buying the pre-cut box of hashbrowns that just need hot water added (remember: simple is best).

Instructions

  1. Scramble the eggs in a skillet - whisk in some milk if desired. Cook to desired consistency.
  2. Chop up any onion, bell pepper, or veggies of your choice. I just toss these in with the eggs while they are cooking. This way, the eggs get the flavor from the veggies and the veggies get steamed and tender.
  3. While the eggs and veggies are cooking, boil some water to add into the pre-cut box of hashbrowns, then add the water and seal up the box. Follow directions on the box for how long to leave hot water inside so they cook properly.
  4. Cook up the bacon/Italian sausage if desired. I usually broil the bacon in the oven since so much stovetop space is already being utilized. I cook the sausage in a skillet separate from the eggs. Crumble the bacon once it’s done cooking and cooled off.
  5. Empty bacon grease and sausage. If you let your bacon grease cool, it can be scooped up and used again to add great flavor to whatever you cook next.
  6. Once your eggs, hashbrowns, sausage, and bacon are all cooked, let them cool for about 15 minutes or so.
  7. Combine all of these ingredients in a large bowl and mix it all up. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper.
  8. Lay out a piece of foil, then place a tortilla on the foil.
  9. Spoon portion-sized amounts of the egg/veggie/meat/hashbrown mixture into the tortilla, then fold up the tortilla and wrap it up in the foil.
  10. Repeat for however many burritos you like!
  11. Refrigerate overnight if you are not leaving until the following morning/day.

Place these wrapped burritos into a cooler to take on your outing. When you’re ready to have them, leave the burritos in the foil and just place them on/near the fire and turn them over until they are warm to the touch all around. Then, unwrap and enjoy! These breakfast burritos keep really well, so if you end up having leftover burritos (which is always my goal), they can be enjoyed later that day, or even the next day.

I think the very best part of a delicious campfire meal is the conversation that ensues while everyone is gathered around, happily devouring a warm breakfast, and discussing who snored the loudest last night, and what the plan is for the day ahead. However you choose to make these burritos, and wherever you choose to have them, I hope they bring people together to enjoy one of the greatest gifts we have been given in this life: the indescribable beauty of the outdoors. So go ahead and give these burritos a try for your next outing! And remember, simple is best. Cheers.

Foil Wrapped Fish with Any Side: Adam Fox, Fishing Expert

Uncooked, skinned fillets of fish lie on a piece of tinfoil topped with butter, lemons, and seasons.

Photo by Adam Fox

I, of all people, know that one of the biggest decisions before going on an extended trip is what to bring to eat. Okay, so maybe which beverage to choose is number one, but the food dilemma is often present as well! Is it going to be turkey or ham, chips or pretzels? Is it easy to clean up after? Oh, and that’s just lunch! What about dinner?! While it may be smarter and easier to stick to the good ol’ lunch meat sandwich for a simple day trip or while you are on the go, it is often harder to prep a good meal or meals that can be traveled with easily and kept at the proper temperature.

There is something so rewarding about being able to go out into the great outdoors and provide yourself or your group with an amazing meal with little cost and hassle. So if you happen to be headed to your favorite fishing spot, and you like to eat your catch as much as I do, this is going to be a game-changer for you! Instead of lugging around your cooler full of ice and condiments to accompany your less-than-preferred post-fishing meal, bring (or harvest) these few items instead:

Ingredients

  • De-scaled or skinless fish
  • Aluminum foil
  • Butter or margarine (about one stick)
  • Garlic salt (or sea salt)
  • Lemon pepper (or cracked pepper)
  • Anything else! (Vegetables, mushrooms, extra spices, etc.)

If you are like me, then you already know how delicious fresh-caught fish can be! The way that white, flaky meat crumbles easily at the delicate touch of your fork, releasing the aromatic steam from inside the fish? Mmmm, can’t beat it! That being said, it is not always easy to prepare a meal when you are out in the woods near your favorite creek or deep in the mountains at a remote lake. However, there is a way that this can be easier than you might think… no pots/pans, no running water, no problem! This little recipe idea is great for when you are out of touch with everyday life, but you still want the comfort of a homey meal after a long day enjoying this natural landscape that is home to all of us.

The reedy banks of a river below a blue sky.

Before we continue, I want to remind you to ALWAYS check your fish for parasites (particularly worms) before eating it. Most parasites can be cooked out, but it is generally safer to discard any infected fish.

There are a few different ways to make this recipe: whole fish, skin-on filets, and skin-off filets. All of the methods are similar and simple. The list below will guide you through the preparation process for all three methods, again they are very similar:

Instructions

  1. Catch some fish!!!
  2. Begin by laying out a sheet of foil big enough to completely wrap your fish on a relatively flat surface, shiny side up. Do the same for your sides (optional). If you are using a whole fish (minus the head, fins, insides, and tail) or skin-on fish filets, make sure to remove all of the scales. Use some of the butter to lightly grease the shiny side of the foil BEFORE placing the fish on.
  3. If you are making sides, remember to put them on a separate, buttered sheet of foil, add butter and seasoning, wrap and put on the heat first! If you are making potatoes, cut them small enough that they cook in time or make them separately.
  4. Lay the fish on the foil. Place it skin-side down if you are using filets (skin-on or -off). Either side is fine when using whole fish.
  5. Season the fish to your liking with garlic salt and lemon pepper, then place some thin slices of butter on the fish. If using a whole fish, season inside and out, then put butter on the inside.
  6. Wrap everything inside the foil and make sure there are no spaces for the steam to escape.
  7. Put the fish on the heat when the side dish has about 5-8 minutes left to cook. Fish will be done when white and flaky (about 5-8 minutes depending on thickness, longer for whole fish).
  8. Unwrap the sides and fish, let cool, then enjoy around the fire!

This recipe is one of my favorite outdoor recipes because of how simple it is, yet how easy it is to make this into a complex dish. If you foraged some wild mushrooms or found some wild onions, you can toss them in on the spot. If you are at home, in the luxury of a fully functioning kitchen, you can add a cacophony of your favorite spices and seasonings to both the fish and the sides. You can also make a glorious side dish with a huge variety of flavors and colors quickly and easily! Another thing that makes this such a wonderful recipe is that it works well with almost any fish you can think of. I’ve personally used this recipe for trout, bass, walleye, panfish, redfish, seatrout, and mackerel.

Some other ways to spice up this recipe are to add cayenne pepper, chili powder, paprika, and/or Old Bay to your seasoning mix, using fresh lemon and garlic instead of lemon pepper and garlic salt, adding fresh thyme, and adding some dry white wine.

When it comes to the side dish, my favorite combo is asparagus, mushrooms, onions, and broccoli with some teriyaki sauce and butter. There are so many creative ways to adapt this dish, don’t let my relatively limited suggestions hold you back from taking this and making it your very own!

I’m glad this recipe and some of the adaptations of it have made their way to you, via me! One of my major goals is to help inspire people to keep loving this land that so willingly provides for us on a daily basis. I plan to do this, in part, by sharing something we all have in common: a love and need for good food! So, next time you are out on the water and you have the opportunity to harvest a nice fish or two, maybe take some time to connect with the earth a little deeper by enjoying a meal that requires little material, but grants amazing flavor. If you’d like to get more recipes or any other fishing knowledge, feel free to reach out to me or other Fishing experts here.

Campfire Nachos: Kat Smith, Camping & Hiking Expert

Nachos in a cast iron pan on a grill.

Photo by anotherpintplease

Do you need an easy, delicious meal to make on your next car camping trip? Try campfire nachos! They can feed a crowd and are super versatile!

While some people opt to use a propane camp stove for their campfire nachos, I always cook them directly over the campfire. The campfire gives the food a delicious, smoky flavor that you just can’t get when you’re cooking at home or on a gas stove. And if you use the campfire as your heat source, the only equipment you need for these nachos is a cast iron pan and aluminum foil—that’s it! However, other equipment that I typically use includes a grill grate and a large foil tray pan.

Start by gathering the ingredients. Everyone has different nacho preferences, so feel free to omit anything you don’t like and add any of your personal favorite nacho toppings that I’ve left out (such as olives – I can’t stand them!).

Ingredients

  • Tortilla chips
  • Beans
  • Pico de gallo
  • Bell pepper
  • Red onion
  • Jalapeno
  • Taco seasonings
  • Meat of your choice
  • Shredded cheese
  • Toppings of your choice: cilantro, avocado or guacamole, sour cream, salsa, etc.

I like to do a lot of the prep work at home before I leave for my camping trip—this makes it easier and quicker to cook at your campsite, and you don’t have to pack as many tools! Drain and rinse the beans, dice and season the peppers and onions, marinate and season your meat (or you can even fully cook the meat!), and slice up the avocado. Store all the prepped ingredients in Ziploc bags or Tupperware containers in your cooler.

The chips are the base of the whole dish, so don’t skimp on them! I use tortilla chips that are thick and crunchy that will hold up well when loaded with toppings, but you can also use chip variations such as sweet potato or beet chips! A flavored chip, such as “hint of lime,” may add a delicious twist!

Any type of canned beans will work for these nachos, but I prefer black beans. As I mentioned above, drain and rinse the beans at home so that they are ready to go, but if you do bring the unopened can, make sure you pack a can opener and strainer.

The pico de gallo is an important ingredient! Even if you are not a tomato lover or wouldn’t normally put pico de gallo on your nachos, the liquid from the tomatoes creates steam when the nachos are on the fire. This helps the cheese melt quicker so the chips don’t burn! If you don’t like pico de gallo, you can use diced tomatoes or jarred salsa instead!

As I mentioned above, I typically dice and season my bell pepper, onion, and jalapeno at home. I make my own taco seasoning mix, which includes salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, and paprika, but a pre-made taco seasoning is an easy alternative! Once the veggies are diced and seasoned, pack them in a Ziploc bag and put them in your cooler so they are ready to throw into the cast iron pan at your campsite! For spicier nachos, add more jalapeno and leave some of the seeds in the veggie mix! For more mild nachos, you can omit the jalapenos altogether.

I’ve made these nachos with grilled chicken, ground beef, and chorizo—the meat options are endless! While you can certainly fully cook your meat at home and bring it to your campsite ready to throw right onto your nachos, I like to cook the meat at my campsite. It adds an extra step and extra time, but I just love the smoky flavor that cooking over the open fire adds!

Any shredded cheese will be delicious on these nachos. I like to use a Mexican blend, but cheddar and pepper jack are other great options that melt quickly.

My favorite nacho toppings are avocado and cilantro. I love the freshness that these ingredients add.

Once your ingredients are gathered, prepped, and packed, you’re ready to head to your campsite and start cooking!

Kat's campground setup with a tent, camping chair, backpacking stove, and campfire.

Photo by Jos Smith

Instructions

  1. Cook the meat. If I’ve brought marinated chicken, I use my grill grate to grill it right over the campfire and then I shred it into smaller pieces. If I’ve brought ground beef or chorizo, I sauté it right in my cast iron pan over the campfire. Once the meat is cooked, set it aside. If you’ve packed fully cooked meat, then omit this step!
  2. Sauté the veggies. Throw all the pre-chopped, pre-seasoned veggies into the cast iron pan over the campfire. Sauté them for just 5-10 minutes until they soften. Once the veggies are cooked, set them aside. If you prefer raw veggies on your nachos, omit this step!
  3. Now it is time to build your nachos! The key to great nachos is the layers—it may take more time, but your nachos will be so much better when every chip is loaded with toppings! Start by adding a layer of chips to the bottom of your cast iron pan, or you can also use a foil tray for this. Use about 1/3 of the chips.
  4. After the first layer of chips, add 1/3 of the black beans, pico de gallo, veggies, meat, and cheese.
  5. Add two more layers of chips, black beans, pico de gallo, veggies, meat, and cheese.
  6. After the last layer is added, cover the nachos with aluminum foil. This will trap steam inside so the cheese gets super melty!
  7. Place your cast iron pan or foil tray over the fire. Be careful not to put it right over a large flame, as you don’t want the bottom layer of chips to burn! Putting it on top of a grill grate so there is some separation between the bottom of the pan and the flame or onto hot coals will help prevent burning.
  8. After a few minutes, peel back a corner of the foil to see if your cheese is melty. If it’s not, keep the nachos on the fire for another few minutes.
  9. Once the cheese is sufficiently melted, take the nachos off the fire and add your cold toppings. Sliced avocado, guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and cilantro are just a few options.
  10. ENJOY these cheesy, gooey, loaded nachos with that special, campfire flavor!

There you have it! Three delicious recipes to make outside this summer. If you don’t even know where to start with cooking outside, check out Kat’s guide to cooking while camping. If the prospect of dirty dishes terrifies you when you’re camping, we have the solution here, and if you want to build a campfire but have no clue how to, we have the answers here!

Chat with a Curated expert if you have any questions or for free, personalized recommendations on the perfect outdoor cooking setup. Bon appétit!

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Written By
Katie Maroney
Katie Maroney
Camping & Hiking Expert
I am a teacher living in Bozeman, MT. My husband and I take full advantage of every weekend in our mountainous area! In the fall, spring, and summer we get out to hike, shed hunt, and camp as much as possible. I am a big advocate for light weight camping, especially since we like to gain quite a bit...
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Adam Fox
Adam Fox
Conventional Fishing Expert
I've been fishing and hunting as long as I can remember, and it has always been the thing I'm most passionate about! I've been in sales for many years; my previous job was working in a beer distributor, but now I get to sell fishing gear and improve the wonderful company that we call Curated! I real...
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Growing up in a suburb of New York City, most of my outdoor adventures were in the Northeast. Hiking, skiing, horseback riding, or just exploring the woods, when I was outside, I was in my element. Now, I am lucky to call Salt Lake City my home, where the world’s greatest outdoor playground is my ba...

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