The weather is finally starting to warm up and that means it's time to pull out your marshmallows and bug spray and go camping!
A close second is a quality cast iron pan.
A well-seasoned cast iron pan coupled with your Traeger can cook just about anything you'd want to enjoy while camping and gives your food that perfect rustic flavor with a little bit of the smoke that is synonymous with camping. But don't forget to get one of these High Efficiency Power Inverters to supply your Traeger with the juice it needs to make camping a delicious experience. (Keep in mind, this power inverter is only compatible with grills with the digital thermostat.)
Although with your Traeger, camping is a breeze (or at least the meal prep), we thought we'd help you even more by giving you some easy cast iron meal ideas that you can use the next time you take a trip into the great outdoors.
For all of these recipes, place your cast iron pan in the Traeger to let it heat up while the grill preheats. This will help you attain that hot sizzle you want when cooking in a cast iron pan.
Eggs, bacon and sausage are the perfect camping breakfast trio. There is nothing like waking up to the smell of bacon sizzling in a cast iron pan on your Traeger. (Apologies to whoever has to take one for the team and wake up early to start that bacon fryin'. And thank you!)
1/2 lb bacon (6-8 strips)
1 lb. sausage
2 cups hash browns (fresh or frozen)
1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded or crumbled
6 large eggs
1 large onion, diced (Spanish yellow is best)
1/2 stick butter (4 tablespoons)
Salt & pepper to taste
Cook the sausage and bacon in the cast iron pan on your Traeger preheated to about 350 degrees F until crisp and well done, set aside.
Drain away the meat drippings, except for just enough to cover the bottom of the skillet. Add in the hash browns and cook until they are almost crispy, stirring frequently.
Stir in the onions and crumbled sausage. Cook until the onions are soft. Then stir in the eggs and cook until the eggs are done and resemble scrambled eggs. Add in salt and pepper to taste.
Stir in 1 cup of cheese and the butter, sliced into chunks.
Crumble the bacon strips and then sprinkle the bacon crumbles and remaining cheese over the top of the skillet - do not stir or mix!
Cover and simmer until the cheese on top is melted. Grab a fork and dig in!
When you're camping you want lunch to be quick and often portable. Here's an idea for a recipe that is the perfect solution without resorting to packaged granola bars and trail mix.
Mexican Skillet Pizza
2 packages crescent roll dough
1 cup chunky salsa (make it as hot as you like)
2 cups pizza sauce
1 1/2 lb ground meat (hamburger or turkey)
8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons oregano
Brown the ground meat in the cast iron skillet on the Traeger preheated to about 350 degrees F. Drain off the grease. Stir in the salsa, 1 tablespoon oregano and heat it through for 3-4 minutes.
Set aside the salsa mixture.
Wipe out your skillet bottom, leaving only a light coating of grease. Cover the bottom of the pan and approximately 1 inch up the sides with the crescent roll dough. Discard any leftover dough.
Spread 1 cup of pizza sauce over the crescent roll dough. Top with the ground meat and salsa mixture and spread evenly.
Pour the rest of the pizza sauce on top and finish with both the cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. Sprinkle a little more oregano over the top.
Cover the cast iron skillet with a lid or aluminum foil and cook over low heat (approximately 200 degrees F) for approximately 20-30 minutes or until the crust starts to brown around the edges. Rotate the skillet after 10 minutes.
Slice it and enjoy!
By dinnertime, you're tired and have worked up a healthy appetite. You want something warm, comforting and perfect to sop up while swapping stories.
Beef & Potato Combo
2 pounds cubed beef
4 large potatoes, washed & sliced in 1/2-inch slices
1 large sweet potato, washed & cut into quarters
1 green bell pepper, cut into slices about 1/2" by 2"
1 red bell pepper, cut into slices about 1/2" by 2"
1 large onion, cut into 1/2" chunks (Spanish onion is best)
1 pack Au Jus gravy mix
1 tablespoon Traeger Beef Shake
Salt & Pepper to taste (approximately 1 teaspoon salt & 1 tablespoon pepper)
2 cups water
Mix the Au Jus mix with 2 cups of water and set aside.
Brown the beef cubs and season with the Beef Shake in the pre-heated cast iron pan (Traeger preheated to 350 degrees F). Add the Au Jus mixture, salt and pepper and bring to a simmer for about 10 minutes.
Add in all your vegetables and stir well to combine all the ingredients.
Cook for approximately 20 minutes for al dente vegetables or 30-40 minutes for softer vegetables.
If you want up the heartiness-factor, add a sprinkling of cheese on top and serve with some warm biscuits.
If this has left your mouth watering but you don't own a cast iron pan, Lodge makes great cast iron pans that you can buy here.
For these cast iron recipes and more, check out this site.