Tips on Planning and Preparing Meals in an RV
Posted by Tom Westley on
There is nothing quite like being out on the open road, the thrill of adventure and the liberating journey. But, there are still home comforts that we all miss when we’re away. Perhaps the biggest of these are the delights of a home-cooked meal. However, you don't have to miss out, as cooking and eating when you’re on your RV holiday can be just as gratifying and enjoyable as it is at home. All it takes is some careful preparation and planning, the right equipment, and a willingness to be creative! To help get you started we’ve put together some of our top tips and strategies for making the most of your RV cooking experience.
It’s vital that you have a well-thought-out and carefully considered meal plan. This will ensure there is no wasted space or ingredients, and that your trip schedule isn’t disrupted. When it comes to planning your meals try and ensure that you use as many common ingredients as possible, and don’t be afraid to get creative to make that happen. Alternatively, there are a number of great apps out there to help make the planning process easier for you, such as Plan To Eat, or Cook Smarts.
No matter what your plan is, don’t forget to bring it with you and check it regularly. Nothing spells disaster for mealtime quite like forgetting what you were meant to be cooking and realizing you don’t have the time or ingredients you need.
Because your cupboard space won’t be quite as big as you’re used to, you need to focus on bringing multi-purpose cooking equipment that can be re-used with ease. Consider items that can double up for serving and preparation, a large skillet so that meals can be made on one hob, and not overdoing it when it comes to things like knives and other utensils. Remember, you don’t need to mimic your home kitchen, just bring the truly essential items and trust your cooking abilities.
How Do You Stock Up?
When it comes to RVs space is at a premium, this means you have to be very careful with what food supplies you bring, and try and find ways to get creative and maximize the space you have. Start with anything that needs to be refrigerated and frozen, avoiding large bottles and bulky bags. Try transferring these items to smaller containers, or even buying smaller versions specifically for your trip.
When it comes to perishables like fruit and meat you should be wary of how long your trip will take and whether or not they can spoil. Ideally, consider buying these things at local supermarkets or grocery stores. Or for a fun day out you can find a nearby market and sample some fresh local produce. Just make sure you plan carefully and ensure your route takes you past the stores you need - otherwise you risk being at the mercy of some dubious truck stop meat!
Finally, there are the staples, the essential pantry items that will serve you across multiple meals. Key to this is bringing rice, one set of pulses or beans, and your favourite pasta, all of which can be used as a part of a wide range of dishes. When it comes to canned goods, nothing can match the versatility of canned tomatoes, the perfect base for any sauce.
Alongside these, try and pack a few smaller bottles of sauces and oils, as well as spice mixes. These mixes will help save space and give you a way of creating exciting variations. You can find a wide range of spice mixes in supermarkets and grocery stores, but for the keen cooks this a great chance to put a personal touch on things by making your own at home before you leave.
The Great Outdoors
Another thing you need to consider is where you’re going to be cooking. One of the benefits of an RV is that it can be fitted with an outdoor kitchen unit. These units are great ways to increase your kitchen space and possibilities without taking up valuable interior room.
And of course, no RV cooking experience could be complete without grilling. There is nothing quite like the taste, atmosphere, and smells that come from gathering together and having a timeless barbecue. Make sure to check ahead and brush up on campsite rules and protocols, and follow safety practices, even if you’re bringing your own portable grill.
As great as these options are, make sure you have a balance of outdoor and indoor options in your meal plan. If there’s one thing you can’t predict it’s the weather, and a combination allows you the chance to be flexible when you look up into the sky in the morning.
Slow And Steady
Slow Cookers are the simplest, and most effective way to create complex dishes bursting with flavour - without taking up valuable space or having to worry over time-consuming multi-step recipes. They’re ideal for a number of dishes such as stews, tagines, soups and more, but for our money, nothing can top a tender pulled pork sandwich slathered in bbq sauce - quintessential RV camping food at its finest.
Of course, you don’t have to do all your own cooking, especially when you’re holidaying at the Salish Resort. Our RV visitors can also explore the wide array of fine dining options available in the nearby Victoria Harbour area. And those that ‘stay in’ will get to eat their meals in the comfort of a modern and idyllic RV haven with spectacular sea views.