We all know the tried and true fire pit food shortcuts of prepping and cooking full meals in tin foil, pouring hot chili into single-serve bags of Fritos, and making biscuit dough pizza in a Dutch oven. Here are a few more tricks you may not have heard of that can make your campfire meals simpler, less messy, and definitely entertaining.

  • Waffle cones and bowls: Edible and charming, they can hold anything from chicken to pudding to oatmeal and still offer a few sweet and crunchy bites when the meal is done.
  • Tinned pastries: Tinned biscuits are a great timesaver when camp cooking, but tinned cinnamon rolls and crescent rolls can add even more options to the menu, especially when combined with a stick. Wrap the cinnamon roll dough around the stick and toast over the flames until puffed and browned; drizzle with icing. Mold crescent or biscuit dough over a dowel at the end of a stick, roast until browned, then fill the cup with vanilla pudding and top with chocolate frosting and whipped cream for a campfire éclair.
  • Jars and tin cans: Crack your eggs into a jar, shake well to eliminate waste, and create an easy breakfast scramble on site. Pack ready-to-eat layered jar salads, yogurt parfaits, and overnight oats. Line a can with pie dough and fill with apples, sugar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt, and nestle in the fire for individual apple pie cans.
  • Breath mint spices: Like breath mints? Save those shakers or tins and fill them with salt, pepper, and spices for your camping trips.
  • A loaf of bread: An uncut loaf of bread can be extremely versatile. Dig out the center and fill it with cheese, tomato sauce, and pepperoni for a quick calzone. Cut into strips, drizzle with garlic salted butter and toast at the end of a stick for garlic breadsticks. Cut into chunks, sprinkle with blueberries, almonds, and sugar and then top with shaken eggs. Bake in cast iron for a heavenly breakfast. (S. Michal Bennett)