Preparing for the ultimate vegan camping adventure and wondering where to start? Then you’ve come to the right place! Camping while vegan does present its own unique challenges, but it’s fairly straightforward once you know what you’re doing and how to prepare.
Not only will you have to plan your meals ahead of time and source plant-based items that won’t go sour on you, but you’ll also have to bring camping supplies that suit your ethics as well.
From easy camping meals to the best vegan-friendly camping supplies, here is the ultimate guide to vegan camping!
The Ultimate Guide To Vegan Camping
Step 1: Research Your Campsite
Before you start shopping and preparing for your vegan camping trip, you’ll want to take your campsite into account. Are you staying in an area with a ton of amenities such as potable water, electricity, and a firepit? Are you going totally off-grid with plans to fend for yourself every step of the way? Or are you traveling in a campervan or RV with access to a bunch of kitchen utensils?
Any of these options will require you to plan differently, so think about what you’re going to need as far as cooking, shelter, and sleeping goes.
Step 2: Plan Your Meals
Planning healthy plant-based meals ahead of time is the ultimate key to having a great vegan camping trip. Using the ideas below, I recommend going to the grocery store with a detailed shopping list, and then meal prepping the day before you leave.
In planning your meals, it’s all about easy food that you can whip up in seconds and that doesn’t require a million kitchen utensils. And keep in mind that planning meals ahead of time for one person is super easy, but planning for multiple people with different tastes can get a bit hectic. For this reason, go into the meal situation knowing exactly how much you’ll need of everything.
And don’t forget any supplements you may be taking — they’re just as important camping as they are at home!
Easy vegan camping breakfast ideas:
- Chia oats soaked in water with raisins and walnuts (these wide-mouth mason jars are the perfect size to prepare with beforehand)
- Sliced banana or apple with peanut butter on whole grain or gluten free bread
- Single serve protein sample packs to add to oats or water
- No-sugar added granola
- Your favorite instant coffee or tea
Easy vegan camping lunch & dinner ideas:
- Amy’s lentil vegetable soup (or any other easy-open Amy’s low sodium soup)
- Plant based burgers & hot dogs (you can purchase these in a store or make your own)
- Skewers: Beyond meat plant-based or vegetable skewers (you can use tempeh or tofu instead of beyond meat if you prefer)
- Frozen quinoa, kale, and beans (these are super easy to put in a pot and heat over the fire or stove
- Burritos: bring wraps, cooked rice, veggies, refried beans, hot sauce, nutritional yeast, and avocado
- Steamed “carrot dogs”: use carrots instead of hot dogs and fill them with all the fixings
- Corn on the cob
- Vegetables in foil: wrap your fave veggies in tin foil with some olive oil and spices, then grill
Vegan camping snack ideas:
- Bag of power greens
- Mary’s crackers
- Fruit on fruit: apples, oranges, bananas, kiwi, peaches, plums, including dried fruit
- Avocado & whole grain or gluten free bread
- Boiled sweet potato (made ahead and packed)
- Veggie crisps (gluten free vegetable crackers) or kale chips
- Forager vegetable chips
- Larabars, or similar
- Trail mix of walnuts, raisins, dates, pumpkin seeds, etc. in a ziplock bag
- Corn thins or brown rice rice cakes with peanut butter or plain
- Quinoa/black bean salad
Vegan camping desserts:
- Smores: Dandies vegan marshmallows, vegan chocolate, and vegan graham crackers
- Campfire banana boats with bananas, vegan dark chocolate, peanut butter, and maple syrup
- Grilled fruit: brush brown sugar on peaches or pineapple and grill over the fire
- Apple crisp: coat apples with brown sugar, nutmeg, granola, vegan butter, and oats, wrap in foil, then grill over the fire
Step 3: Source Your Gear
Now that you know the amenities at your campsite and have a general meal plan, it’s time to start compiling vegan camping equipment. Though finding animal-free camping equipment can be a bit of a search, there are thankfully quite a few reputable options on the market:
Vegan bedding: When choosing bedding that will keep you warm and dry out in the backcountry, skip anything made with down or wool and opt for synthetic fibers. This sleeping bag from Coleman is 100% synthetic and will keep you cozy, and I also recommend bringing a sleeping pad, some hand warmers (if you’re in a cold climate), and a cruelty-free pillow.
Vegan Shoes: If you’ll be doing any hiking or water-based activities on your camping trip, then opt for shoe companies that are certifiably vegan. These Asics hiking shoes are 100% synthetic and highly-rated for their gel cushioning system.
Cooking supplies: Though it’s pretty easy to get vegan-friendly cooking supplies (anything that’s plastic or metal), you’ll want to pack a camping stove, re-usable camping plate and cutlery set, camping kitchen utensils, biodegradable vegan soap, bin for doing dishes, camping grill, and washcloths.
Vegan luggage: As demand grows, more and more companies are switching from using animal products in their luggage and daypacks to synthetic and plant-based fibers. In particular, all of Osprey’s luggage and daypacks are vegan and well-made.
Sunscreen and Bug Spray: More than just about the food and supplies, having a great camping trip requires a few comfy extras. These vegan sunscreen and bug spray products will keep your skin feeling great and protected from the elements. Alternatively, you can make your own vegan bug spray by mixing together 1 part eucalyptus or lavender essential oil with 10 parts witch hazel — put it into a spray container and apply!