Tips To Keep Food Cool While Camping

Published On
Last Updated

Spending time in nature is one of the surest ways to relax and unwind. Life is full of ups and downs, and a camping trip every now and then will help you deal with some of the challenges that life throws your way.

To enjoy your camping trip, however, you must bring a few supplies to make your stay comfortable. You need a good and durable tent and a suitable sleeping pad to ensure you relax at night. You also need to eat when you are out there camping, and this makes making the proper feeding arrangements very important.

Most food items are perishable, and if you are not careful, you may find yourself feeding on stale food if you don’t take the proper measures to keep your food fresh. This article looks at how to keep food cold while camping to ensure that you have fresh food during your entire stay outdoors.

How to keep food cold while Camping

In our homes, we use refrigerators to keep food fresh for a long time, but that is not possible outdoors. Yes, you may get a portable fridge to keep your food cold, but this is a luxury that most people may need help to afford.

So what must you do to ensure that your food remains fresh throughout your stay outdoors? We have compiled the following list of how to keep food cold while Camping, which, if implemented, will reduce the chances of your food getting warm or spoiled.

Helpful Tip 1: Avoid the party ice that is sold in most supermarkets or service stations

This ice melts too quickly, so it may only help keep your food fresh for a short time. Party ice can be accessed easily in the establishment named above. This added convenience may tempt you to rely on it for your food storage needs, but the fact that it melts too quickly makes it less ideal for your camping needs.

You can use it as a last resort to keep your food cold for a day or two, but it will not help you in the long run.

Helpful Tip 2: Cool your cooler in advance

Cooling your cooler in advance will ensure that your food is getting into a cold atmosphere instead of a warmer one. Warmer environments make it easy for food to go rancid, precisely what you are trying to avoid.

When you cool the cooler before you proceed and place your foodstuff into it, you lower the temperatures in there, which goes a long way to ensure that the food stays cold for a long time. You can do this by placing packets of ice into the cooler the night before your camping trip to ensure that the temperature is low for food packaging.

Helpful Tip 3: Freeze water to create ice packs

You should also prepare ice packs you will take to camp. Such bags of ice are slow to melt than regular ice cubes, and as such, they will help you keep your food cold for an extended period.

To create the ice packs, fill a container with water and freeze it a week before your trip. Doing this a week in advance will ensure the water is frozen, reducing the rate at which it melts. You should use large bottles such as juice and milk containers to create the largest of blocks when making ice blocks.

Helpful Tip 4: Freeze foods before leaving

You will want to freeze the foodstuff you will take to camp if you want them to remain cold for a long. Food items like individual chicken breasts, hot dogs, and hamburger patties should be frozen the day before you embark on your camping trip to keep them fresh for a long.

When you finally settle at camp, you should eat the perishable food items first as they can quickly go bad when left for a long time. Just don’t forget to reheat the food thoroughly to avoid contamination.

Helpful Tip 5: Keep your cooler away from the sun

This is another measure that will help you keep your food cold for an extended period. Your cooler should be away from direct sunlight at all times.

Should the weather get warmer, you should place a blanket on top of the cooler to keep the sun at bay. You should also keep moving your cooler to the campsite to ensure that the cooler is not exposed to the hot sun.

Helpful Tip 6: Use different coolers for your food and drinks

Consider using different coolers for your food and drinks. With people reaching out to the cooler for refreshments when the sun is scorching, you increase the rate at which ice in the cooler melts as the frequent opening introduces warm air into the cooler.

You should, therefore, have one cooler specifically for drinks and another for food items. This will ensure that people don’t open the cooler with foodstuff unnecessarily; this way, you will be able to keep the food cold for a very long time.


You need food to be able to enjoy your stay outdoors. Campers in the days gone by would hunt and prepare their meals using campfires. Still, lazy and modern-day campers like you and me with no hunting skills should find other ways to feed themselves while camping.

This would mean carrying food from home. Considering that most items are perishable, learning how to keep food cold while Camping is essential. Read the abovementioned issues to know how to make your stay outdoors memorable.

About the author - Colin M

I've been camping since Santa brought my first tent when I was a wee boy in Scotland. Since then, I've camped out, stayed in motorhomes and Glamped worldwide. By day I sit in front of a computer, and by day off, Im typically found (lost) in the outdoors.