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pack camp out food suggestions

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Hi, we are trying to plan for our pack camp out and would like to get a few ideals on the easiest, cheapest way to feed about 40-50 people if all show up?

Let me say that cost will some what a factor as pack will spend some, and probaly families will have a small cost aswell. We don't have enough funds within our pack, for the pack to flip the bill for this all together.

Someone has donated a bunch of hot dogs for trip as it was on sale and they could buy a lot fairly cheaply to help feed the packs.Which the pack could he other stuff, chips, etc. which could take of 1 meal. Need to mentioned it would a friday nite thru sunday after noon trip. families would have to eat before they left friday, probaly have a snack that night.


For the pure ease of cooking for all people,and everyone trying to get to eat close to same time, would something like tacos, which could be made fairly cheap be a way? Just wanted to get a ideal of what others have done in past.

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we have made taco in a bag. you purchase the small doritos bags. a couple of families buy ground beef and then others can be assigned onions, sour cream, cheese, lettuce. tomatos ect. the meat can even be prepared ahead of time and just warm it up or just bring some skillets and prepare it. i just crush the bags up after opening so the chips are small then top it with what you like. clean up is so easier since the bag is your dish and you just throw it away.

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Well, I'll tell you what my pack does. I won't say it's the best or worst idea...but that it's the only way I know so far.


We start our family campout of Friday afternoons/ evenings. Usually starting around 4 or 5 pm. Pretty much, it's just a get there, find a spot and set up your tent/campsite thing.

You are responsible for your meal.


Saturday morning: WE start cooking bacon and panckes. If you plan on eating, you better ne at the mess tent at 8 am. Not too eraly, not too late (depending on your standards). Bacon isn't the cheapest thing to buy, but not the most expensive. Buying it in bulk helps keep the cost down ( Do you belong to a Sam's Club, Costco or other type of buying club?). Syrup is on the tables, and we have some of thosr single aerve cereals and pint milks donated by local restaurants.


By the way, one den rank is assigned serving and clean up duties.


For lunch, we bouight a bunch of cases of pre fab hamburger patties. The meat to soybean ratio is still being debated, but nobody dies or became anemic over a less than 5 star lunch. A different rank helped by preparing salsa and making salads. Another den had serving and cleanup duties.


For supper.....well...being in the south has it's benefits. We cooked a couple 100 pound pigs all day long. Boiled potatoes and green beans and had brown and serve rolls. Cost per pound by the serving and the hog was cheaper than anything else.


Besides, we decided that after a day of dragging around and doing all kinds of activities... noyt having to do anything but toss pig on your plate wasn't such a bad idea.


Sunday, we have honey buns warmed up in a heating plate ( has the sterno burner under it with a pan of water) You gather again around 8am, drink coffee or hot chocolate.

We have scouts reverance for about 5 minutes and then you break camp. The event is over and you are on your own again!


Hey, it's a family pack campout. As long as you don't go broke, you could have the whole thing caterd if you want.


Cost is figured at $15 per adult and $5 per scout. We basically break even after figuring the cost of renting the camp/retreat, food, and supplies, materials including pins and belt loops.(This message has been edited by scoutfish)

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For our pack campouts we only camp Saturday AM to Sunday AM so we are only dealing with three meals. There have at times been suggestions to drop Sunday Breakfast, but many of us really enjoy it so we continue.


Our standard lunch is hot dogs and hamburgers w/ assorted chips, fruits & veggies.


For dinners we've done several things:


Spaghetti dinners - speghetti and sauce, garlic bread, salad. Pack has done all the shopping for this, it has either been prepped and then reheated prior to the campout or actually brought in shortly before the meal then kept warm. (We've been getting away from this over time as for a long time it was all that was done.)


Tacos - Pack purchased required amount of ground beef (a lot) and spices and they were prepped prior to the campout by one person. Pack provided hard and soft shells and I believe a few bags of chips. Each family is asked to bring favorite toppings to share, you get quite a variety. This was a really fun and good meal.


Chili - Each den is responsible for two batches of chili to share. Every family brings chili toppings to share. Pack provided salad. Great variety doing it this way. Have also done it with the pack providing a huge amount of chili, fed the masses but not as much fun.


Assorted soups and stews - have done them with the pack, an individual, or a bit of everyone providing the ingredients. Does anyone remember the book Stone Soup?


Our breakfasts are normally pancakes, sausage, and fruit. We had the boys make their own butter while pancakes were cooking before, have to do that again, its been a few years and its a fun and tasty learning experience.


One campout a year (our district family campout)we do pudgie pies (pie irons) during our cracker barrel time.



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Almost forgot our other standard breakfast:


Mountain man breakfast - hash brown potatoes, eggs, and chopped up sausage all mixed up together. Cheese and onions if you like. Some of the boys prefer the ingredients separate. If you really want heart burn, add leftover chili from the night before.

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Much depends on the cooking facilities you have. I can cook over a fire or camp stove as well as I can at home, the difficulty is holding stuff hot or cold before serving.


Our old pack campsite had a big 3'x3' charcoal grill so we could grill a pile of burgers or dogs in a hurry. One dad had a piece of steel cut to fit the grill which we used to turn out hundreds of pancakes in a hurry (we mixed the batter in a 5 gal bucked with a cortdless drill and paint stirrer.)


The soups, stews and chilies are good ideas as you can do a lot in one big pot. One year we did hobo dinners for the kids and used the same ingredients to make a nice stewed beef for the adults.


A quick and easy breakfast for us was an oatmeal bar. Big pot of oatmeal and a wide assortment of toppings-- bananas, strawberries, blueberries, syrup, brown sugar, butter, chocolate chips, on and on. Let the boys come up with ideas. It was funny that when we told the boys we were having oatmeal, a lot of them said they didn't like oatmeal. Turns out they don't like MICROWAVE oatmeal. They couldn't believe how good the real deal, cooked with milk, really is. The chocolate chips didn't hurt either.

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Friday night -

Snack of crackers, sausage, cheese, & fruit w/juice/water/cocoa


Saturday breakfast - Includes fruit, milk, and coffee/tea -

1) DO eggs with hash browns, peppers, onions, cheese, and sausage, plus fruit, milk, coffee/tea

2) Scrambled eggs boiled in a bag. Add your own innerds.

3) Pancakes w/sausages

4) Breakfast Burritos - Plain eggs scrambled, have separate addons (salsa, peppers, cheese, sausage), flour tortillas


Saturday Lunch - Includes fruit & bug juice -

1) Tacos in a bag - Individual taco chip bags, seasoned ground beef, refried beans (for Veggies in the group), shredded lettuce, cheese, salsa.

2) Hot dogs, chips, salad

3) Sandwiches & chips

4) Mixed Up Soup - Everyone brings 1 or 2 cans of any kind of NON cream soup.


Saturday Dinner - Includes salad, fruit, bug juice, coffee/tea -

1) Stew w/rolls or rye bread

2) Spaghetti w/meat sauce, or with plain sauce, or with meatballs on the side

3) Boneless chicken breasts BBQ, or seasoned, with stuffing

4) Hot dogs/Sausages/Burgers

5) Chili w/corn bread

6) Foil dinner


Saturday Dessert -

1) Cookies

2) Baked apples

3) DO Dump cake

4) Baked banana boats

5) S'mores


Sunday Breakfast - Includes fruit, milk, and coffee/tea -

1) Cold cereal

2) Bagels and cream cheese


As others have said, a lot depends on what kind of cooking facilities you have. Are your fire areas large, or small? How many camp stoves? How many dutch ovens? Indoor stove? Portable grills?


What you eat, when, is also determined by your schedule, how much time you have, where you will be, etc. We do big breakfasts on Saturday because we are waiting for people to arrive, and don't start our activities real early. We do quickie, no cook breakfasts on Sunday because folks are getting their gear together. If we are out and about at lunch, we will often have sandwiches at a picnic area near where we are at. If we are back at camp, and are going to be staying for a while, we will have a more involved lunch.


To spread the cost either charge everyone sufficient to cover, and then assign different families (usually den leaders) to bring different things. Or don't charge for food but have every family bring some assigned food stuffs.


Hit the off brand cheap-o stores (Aldi is great), or the warehouse ones (Sam's), and buy sale stuff. Avoid name brands, and big name grocery stores. The boys don't need, and won't appreciate, all beef kosher deli dogs.


Have 99% of the prep work, and pre-cooking, done at home. It is a lot easier to pull out a zip lock bag of browned, seasoned ground beef, and just dump it in a big pot to heat. Same goes for anything to be cut up or grated.


Just a note on fruit, bananas get banged up EASY, and then no one will eat them. Apples and oranges work well.



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Breakfast burritos were always a favorite for Sat breakfast in out pack. Everyone was assigned to bring certain things. For dinner we did Sloppy Joes, spaghetti. Mac and cheese with ham chunks. Same process everyone was assigned certain things. Always had enough. Usually everything was precooked as well so all we had to do was heat it up. Quick and easy and everyone contributed. Usually each family only had to bering 1 or 2 things.

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Whatever food menus one chooses, the basic concept behind my experience was to do all the food preparation prior to the outing. All the food processed and put in plastic bags based on individual amounts per person.


If one does this they can control the amounts used/not used and won't be wasting a lot of food.


Foil dinners?


Prep all the food and everyone gets a bag to make up for the fire. They can decide on their own whether or not they are going to leave out the onions and one doesn't need to make one-size fits all.


Chinese Dinner?


Everyone dumps their packet of meat and veggies into a dutch oven, dump so much sauce in for every X # of packets added, toss rice into put and then serve up when heated up.


The more elaborate the meal the more complicated the process is going to be.


For example, how many dutch ovens does one need? Adults eat more than kids. Now, immediately one has to recalculate the whole process. If an adult thinks he/she is going to want two packets, give them two, it adjusts on the fly at camp. Joe and his two kids didn't show, don't make up the food just to toss away.


It requires a bit more preparation up front, but one will truly appreciate it once one gets out into the field. The military didn't come up with MRE's out of a void. One meal, one packet, one person. Can't be any simpler.





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On our pack campouts we like to eat well...we have found that if we eat good everyone wants to attend the next campout! If you eat bad then well they don't LOL!


Sat breakfast is Sausage and Egg Burritos..everyone loves them and they are cheap and quick!


Sat Lunch is Sandwiches, Chips and a snack like Little Debbies or something. We have a bakery outlet here that will donate things to our pack if asked!


Sat Dinner we have had everything from beef stew, spaghetti, Boston Butts on the grill, burgers. The most talked about meal was the Boston Butts on the grill chopped up and served as BBQ with NC BBQ sauce which everyone in GA went Nuts over!!


Sun Breakfast is Pancakes and Sausage and if we have eggs leftover we will scramble them too.


We charge $5-6 per person for food and we feed about 100. My husband and the ACM are the kings of cooking cheap for alot of people.

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Thanks for the feedback, got a ideal for what I needed.As to what type of equpiment using, we are going to try at 1 of our councils sites, and if we use a certain spot they have fire pits, about 7-10ft long with screens we could throw foil on top and crank some food out.

Other than that we have bbq grills,some camp stoves that we can take. I have never really use a "Coleman type stove" although have 4, guess I get it out a try some things in the back yard.


We had some one donate a ton of hot dogs which will cover a part of lunch for us , chips, etc..

Roughly we are figuring on about 40 people,about 15-17 adults rest kids. I am trying to keep in cheap as possible for the pack.Burgers might be a option, but if we can get the hamburger cheap enough we might go with soft tacos as we get a lot tacos out of a 10lbs of meat. Trying to figure on about $10 a family which sounds like not enough, I have others tell me they charge $15, but what type of food did have, how many cooks, etcc... We have about 14 different families, some just 2 people some with 5, think the average is 4. I going pass out a sign up sheet for ages and how many and go from there. Thanks

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  • 8 years later...

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