Looking for ways on how to keep food cold while camping? Well, being out camping means you will have to carry food with you. Some campers will have a no-cooking trip and therefore bring food from home. Other foods will need to stay cold for preservation before cooking. Foods that require freezing to stay longer are a little challenging, especially if you do not have a way to keep them stay cold for days. Having cold drinks in the hot summer is equally essential.

1. Carry A Cooler

Bring along a portable cooler on your campsite to help you keep most food cold. When picking a cooler for outdoors, ensure it is high-end. However, it is a bit pricy, but it will keep the food cooler than low-end coolers. Portable coolers are easy to pack and carry together with your other gears when going camping. Foods that require cooling are like drinks and perishables, which require freezing.

How To Keep Food Cold While Camping

2. Have An Extra Cooler

The best way to keep food colder is by having more than just one cooler. You can choose to use one cooler at a time to avoid frequent opening of both coolers. With more than one, you get guaranteed cold food anytime. If one cooler isn’t sufficient, you can always transfer your food or drinks to the other cooler. That the joy of having a backup cooler.

3. Freeze Food At Home

You can freeze your foods at home and then keep them in the cooler to maintain that coldness. When you freeze them before taking the foods to the campsite, they will stay cold in the cooler. A cooler only works to ensure the food stays at the required low temperatures. Freezing the food in advance will ease its work as it won’t melt quickly.

4. Pack Foods In The Cooler Appropriately

One step to keeping the foods colder is through arranging them properly in the cooler. The best way to pack food is by having them placed in portions. Start with the frozen foods at the bottom of the cooler and then the other cold ones. It ensures the frozen foods add cold to the ones on top of it.

Also, start with the foods you won’t be eating immediately. Have the one you are likely to start eating right away at the top of the cooler. It is best to plan your meals before heading on a camp trip to save you from being mixed up.

How To Keep Food Cold While Camping

5. Arrange Them In Layers

Food packed in layers will stay cold longer as they will be sharing the coldness of each food item. Start with the ones that are frozen. Foods that need to stay cold for a long period should be at the bottom of the cooler. Layer them also according to how you plan on eating or cooking them.

6. Place Ice Cubes At The Bottom Of The Cooler

Frozen things at the cooler’s bottom will make the other foods stay cold for a more extended period. Fill it with more ice cubes a few hours before you embark on your outdoor adventure. If you do not have ice, you can as well compromise with cold water. How you use ice cubes will depend on an individual.

You can decide to remove the water after the cooler has become cold and then fill it up with the meals you will eat on your trip. The other option will be to leave the ice cubes at the cooler’s bottom and place more foods on top of it. The frozen cubes will take longer before they melt. They form a cold layer at the base. When they melt, you can still preserve them instead of draining them out.

7. Put Salt In The Cooler

When you have filled the cooler with ice cubes, throw in a few tablespoons of salt. It is said to reduce the melting point of water. You can incorporate salt with the ice cubes at the bottom of the cooler. The less time the ice cubes take to melt, the more time you have to keep enjoying cold foods.

How To Keep Food Cold While Camping

You shouldn’t put the salt directly on the cooler; if you are not planning to consume the ice cubes, you can freeze them with the salt. Alternatively, add salt to one or two ice packs before freezing them and mark them; you do not want to end up eating or drinking salty foods.

8. Always Keep The Cooler Closed

It would be best if you opened the cooler only when picking food out of it. The moment you have what you need, ensure you do not forget to close it. Warm air will go inside when you open it, and cold air will also escape to the environment. If you are camping with kids, it is advisable not to let them open the cooler quite often. Warm air makes ice melt faster, and it also makes cold drinks start becoming warm.

9. Place The Cooler On A Shade

To make food stay colder longer, place it in the shade under a tree or inside your tent. When exposed to too much sunshine, refrigeration will slow down. If there is no nearby shade, the tent is full, or there is too much heat, you can cover it with a damp towel. You can also place a tarp over the cooler to keep it away from the sun.

10. Have Ice Packs

Ice packs are locally available at grocery stores. You can also have at home ice packs by adding water to the zip lock bags and then freezing them. Store-bought ice packs last longer and reusable. If you are on a budget and don’t want to spend much on ice packs, you can have them pre-made before setting out for your trip.

To keep food cold while camping, you will need to own a cooler. It is portable and preferable compared to fridges. All the foods that need to remain cold should be kept inside the cooler. As much as they will stay at a low temperature, it would help if you also kept the cooler cold at all times. Two is better when going camping, especially if they have good insulation properties. Hopefully, the methods above will help you keep food cold during your camping days.


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