Find out what happens when you take a vegan girl, her gluten-free boyfriend, and her cockatiel and put them out in the middle of the forest. If you’re interested in going camping, you might find my advice helpful.
I’ve been a long-time lover and appreciator of the great outdoors. There’s just something about having a canopy of towering trees above my head that makes me feel so young and zestful.
Upon being reunited with my boyfriend, Matt, (who is doing a summer internship in Mississippi), we decided to have an intimate 4th of July by camping in the great outdoors. Since he had a long 4-day weekend off from work, we stepped it up a notch with 2 nights in the Mississippi wilderness!
So what do you pack to prepare for two nights in a tent?
Um, pretty much everything.
Here’s a ridiculous list of all the food we packed:
Vegan & Gluten-Free
- leftover Chickpea Salad
- Lemon Poppyseed Cupcakes
- Roasted Almonds
- Dark Chocolate Almonds
- Quinoa (cooked)
- Wild Rice (cooked)
- Homemade Graham Crackers (from The Healthy Gluten-Free Life… our go-to cookbook!)
- Dairy-Free Chocolate
- White Bean Hummus
- Organic Energy Trail Mix
- 1 lemon
- green onions
Non Gluten-Free items (for me)
- Whole Wheat bread
- Pretzel Crisps
Gluten-Free and/or Non Vegan items (for Matt, who is not vegan)
- White Rice bread
- Udi’s GF Blueberry Muffins
- GF Cafe soups
- Deli cheese
- Deli meat
We didn’t have a cooler to put our perishable items. We did, however, have an insulated lunchbox that we froze prior to our departure. We managed to squeeze most of our perishable items in there.
After seeing everything we packed, Matt kept calling the trip “Kristen’s Luxurious Camping Trip.” 😛
We stayed in Wall Doxey State Park in Mississippi. We opted for a primitive site, which included water, a grill, and a fire pit. Within the premises, there were bathrooms, showers, picnic areas, a lake, and a nature hike. Perfect for this boy and this girl.
Thanks to Matt’s Mississippi roommate, we got hooked up with a sweet, massive 3-bedroom tent. MASSIVE. Matt joked that the tent was bigger than his Mississippi bedroom, which was sadly true. “I should just pitch this and stay in here all summer instead!” We had more room than we knew what to do with!
DAY 1, DINNER
Meal: (no photos, due to candlelight) Matt had some of his Deli meat and cheese to make a very dry sandwich (we didn’t bring any condiments… whoops!). I had some of my Pretzel Crisps with the leftover Chickpea Salad and some hummus. We also indulged in a cupcake. We had a big lunch, so dinner wasn’t anything to jump up and down about.
DAY 2, BREAKFAST
Meal: Quinoa salad with strawberries, blueberries, carrots, spinach, and tomatoes (that we ended up taking out and throwing away… they were nast).
And because we have a crazy sweet tooth, we decided to try our hand at s’mores not too long after that!
Sadly, they did NOT offer vegan marshmallows at the Kroger near the house! *cries*
Therefore, my s’more ended up looking like this:
Meanwhile, Matt managed to start a teensy fire enough to make some marshmallow s’mores for him:
I will definitely look for vegan s’mores in my Orlando grocery stores so I can one day indulge in this savory treat!
Oh, and by the way, the homemade gluten-free graham crackers we made were awesome. Not your typical crunchy graham cracker, but thicker, a bit crisp on the outside, soft on the inside, and full of flavor. We got the recipe from The Healthy Gluten-Free Life. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Oh yeah, and this little guy:
After that, we spent the day taking the funyak (inflatable kayak) out on the lake and going on the nature trail, which was good ol’ nature-filled fun. No pics from my DSLR, but here are a couple pics via Instagram:
DAY 2, LUNCH
Meal: Hummus with carrots, almonds, and grapes.
With the almonds and grapes, we amused ourselves by playing a game where we would throw a grape or almond at each other and try to catch it in our mouths. These are the games that ensue without TV, internet, and video games. (no photos, unfortunately!)
DAY 2, DINNER
Meal: Wild Rice, 2 avocados, and green onions. For dessert, another Lemon Poppyseed cupcake.
Avocados were a great addition to this rice! It’s one of those perishable items that doesn’t need to be refrigerated and still tastes amazing. I originally cooked the rice using the Barefoot Contessa’s Recipe, which has tons of flavor that stayed even a day later.
DAY 3, BREAKFAST
Meal: Organic Energy Trail Mix with blueberries
I got the trail mix from Publix. It truly does give you the spike of energy you need for packing up a camp site! And blueberries… well… they’re just amazing always.
And with that, we packed up our things and left our canopied oasis.
Things I wish I had brought
- vegan marshmallows (I should’ve looked in Publix before I left Florida!)
- condiments for sandwiches
- salt & pepper
Things I wish I hadn’t brought
- mushrooms – got disgusting
- cucumber – turned nast
- tomato – the tomato was already a few days old, so it got rotten quickly. Fresh grape tomatoes would’ve been a better choice.
- SO MUCH spinach – we brought 3 baggies full… 1 would’ve sufficed!
Best items of the bunch
- Quinoa & Wild Rice – it was the best choice for us to pre-make these items and bring them along. They were filling and delicious!
- Avocados – perfect addition to quinoa/wild rice that didn’t taste any less tasty than intended.
- Hummus – so worth all the room it took up in our lunchbox!
- Organic Energy Trail Mix – perfect for an instant energy boost.
- ALL THE SWEETS! – we both have mad sweet teeth (tooths?) that strike at any moment and must be satisfied.