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Gluten Free Options and Tips for a Week-Long Camping Trip

A newly diagnosed celiac patient of mine recently asked if it was possible to go on a camping trip with extended family that eat gluten. Since it is that time of year I thought it would be a good idea for a blog post!


 

Planning a camping trip with friends or family who eat gluten while you maintain a gluten-free diet can be challenging but entirely manageable with some preparation. Here are some tips and gluten-free options to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable trip:


2 tents in a forest at night

Planning and Preparation

Communication: Let your fellow campers know about your gluten-free needs. This helps in planning meals that everyone can enjoy or at least ensures there's a clear understanding to help you avoid cross-contamination.

Menu/Meal Planning: Plan your meals and snacks in advance. This way, you can ensure you have gluten-free options for each meal. Don't forget to check out the surrounding area for gluten free dining options for those rainy days. The Find Me Gluten Free app is a lifesaver when travelling. When using Google be sure to double check with the restaurant. Many places mention GF on the menu but are not actually safe for people with celiac disease.


Separate Cooking Utensils: Bring your own set of cooking utensils, cutting boards, and pots/pans to avoid cross-contamination. Be sure to label them!


Remember to pack non-perishable gluten-free foods. Some great options include:

  • Canned beans and vegetables

  • Gluten-free pasta and rice

  • Nut butter and gluten-free bread or crackers

  • Gluten-free granola bars and snacks

  • Canned soups (ensure they are gluten-free)


placing grocery bags in a car trunk

Breakfast Ideas

Oatmeal: Make sure to choose gluten-free oats. You can add dried fruits, nuts, or seeds for extra flavor.

Eggs: Scrambled, boiled, or in a gluten-free wrap with veggies.

Yogurt with Gluten-Free Granola: Easy and quick, just ensure the granola is certified gluten-free.


Lunch and Dinner Ideas

Grilled Meats and Vegetables: Chicken, beef, or fish with a side of grilled veggies. Use separate grilling areas or foil packets to avoid cross-contamination.

Gluten-Free Pasta Salad: Pre-cook gluten-free pasta and mix with your favorite veggies, proteins, and a gluten-free dressing.

Tacos: Use corn tortillas (check they are gluten-free) and fill with your choice of protein, beans, cheese, and veggies.

Chili: A hearty one-pot meal that can be made in advance and reheated.


Snacks

Fruit and Nut Mixes: Create your own trail mix with dried fruits, nuts, and seeds.

Rice Cakes: Top with peanut butter, cheese, or avocado.

Vegetable Sticks: Carrot, celery, and cucumber sticks with gluten-free hummus or dip.

Popcorn: A great campfire snack that is naturally gluten-free.


Mexican night, taco feast!

Tips to Avoid Cross-Contamination

Separate Storage: Keep your gluten-free foods in a separate container or cooler to avoid any accidental contamination.

Hand Washing: Wash your hands thoroughly before eating or preparing food, especially after handling any gluten-containing items.

Dedicated Cleaning Supplies: Use separate dish sponges and towels for gluten-free and gluten-containing dishes.


Be Prepared

Emergency Snacks: Always have a few extra gluten-free snacks on hand in case of any mix-ups or delays in meal preparation.

Allergy Cards: Consider bringing cards that explain your gluten-free needs, which can be helpful when communicating with others or when eating out.

First Aid Kit: Carry any necessary medications or supplements you might need in case of accidental gluten ingestion.


Enjoy the Outdoors!

To have a successful camping trip while following a gluten-free diet, it is essential to plan ahead and communicate effectively. By utilizing these suggestions and meal suggestions, you can fully immerse yourself in the beauty of nature and the camaraderie of your camping companions.


 

Have questions about celiac health or mindful living in general? Send me an message!



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