Are you one of those outdoors enthusiasts that can’t resist stoking the firepit the moment you set foot next to a ring of rocks? Do you promptly let that campfire burn for every waking hour you spend at the campsite or cabin? Yep, I thought so. I KNEW it wasn’t just me! It’s weird how that smokey wood smell casts a strange spell, causing a stomach to growl with every wonderful whiff. Good thing my campfire pie irons are always close at hand. If it were up to me, I’d find Pudgy Pie recipes for every meal!
Speaking of every meal, here are 5 new recipes that will have you covered, just in case you never leave your campsite. I’m including pudgy pie ideas for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course you can’t forget a tasty snack, and a bombdiggity dessert (the 2 most important feeding frenzies of the day!) Now you can enjoy an entire 24-hours of piping-hot round pie iron deliciousness. For space-saving sake I won’t include cooking instructions unless it differs from normal pudgy pie procedure. But if you want the complete lowdown, you can find a general step-by-step preparation/cooking tutorial in this previous Caramel Apple Pie Recipe blog post.
Here we go, my list of 5 Pudgy Pie campfire pie iron recipes that are bound to become your favorite camping buddies!
Stuffed French Toast Pie
INGREDIENTS: 2 slices of pre-cooked French toast. Choose your favorite stuffings from these options or add your own: cheese, pre-cooked sausage crumbles (here’s a good one from Jimmy Dean, pre-cooked bacon strips broken into pieces, precooked scrambled egg leftovers or sliced up hard-boiled eggs, pre-cooked hash brown leftovers. Top with syrup after cooking (Pure maple is best – try this Made-in-Minnesota favorite — BELL’S syrup.)
TIPS: Make French toast for your first breakfast of the camping trip but make plenty of extra to set aside for these delicious breakfast creations later. Butter the outsides of 2 pieces of the French toast to substitute for bread in the pudgy pies.
WHAT TO EXPECT: A taste explosion of breakfast favorites. Do you like saltier tastes the best? Add more cheese and meats. Prefer the sweet syrup taste? Leave the cheese out entirely. Experiment until you find your favorite combo. There’s no right or wrong answer!
Pudgy Reuben Campwich
INGREDIENTS: Thin sliced deli corned beef, sliced Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, Russian dressing (or if you prefer, Thousand Island dressing), and 2 slices of rye bread.
TIPS: Layer bread, cheese, then meat, sauerkraut in middle, more meat, more cheese, bread. Close and cook. Drain sauerkraut before adding and keep it in the middle of the sandwich to prevent soggy bread. Top with dressing before eating instead of adding to the inside of the sandwich. (Substitute sliced turkey meat to convert that Reuben to a Rachel.)
WHAT TO EXPECT: A pretty traditional Reuben sandwich taste … but with the ability to doctor it to your own personal preference for your ideal amount of cheese/kraut/dressing. Plus remember this, EVERYTHING tastes better when you’re enjoying it outdoors, so be prepared to be incredibly satisfied!
Delizioso Italian Meatball Bake
INGREDIENTS: Pre-cooked meatballs (Simek’s original are my favorite but the Italian ones are also incredible), jar of spaghetti sauce (the thicker and chunkier the better in my book – try Prego Chunky), shredded mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, (optional Ricotta cheese), 2 slices of Italian white bread.
TIPS: Slice the meatballs in half before adding, they heat faster and all the way through. Don’t skimp on the meatballs. Don’t overfill on the spaghetti sauce (2 tablespoons are usually plenty.) Be generous with the parmesan — I put a dense layer across the entire interior area. Mix all ingredients together with a spoon inside the bread for the most thorough heating and cheese melting.
WHAT TO EXPECT: An incredibly filling meal that will stick with you for a while. Think Davanni’s Hot Meatball Hoagie … only 3 times better! Beware, at first bite. The spaghetti sauce gets incredibly hot.
P.S.: Make sure you don’t leave this sitting around by the campfire too long after cooking because remember: CHI DORME NON PIGLIA PESCI (you snooze, you lose!)
ANYTIME SNACK OR MEAL
Cheesy BBQ Mac & Cheese Campfire Dog Pockets
INGREDIENTS: ½ to ¾ cup of cooked macaroni & cheese. 1 hotdog (roasted to preference over the campfire and cut into bite-size pieces), 1 to 2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce, shredded cheese, 2 slices of white bread.
TIPS: Pre-roast the hotdog over the fire before adding to get that special campfire flavor. Slice the cooked hotdog widthwise like you would to create BBQ pennies. If I don’t have mac & cheese left over from a previous dinner, I often use the kraft microwavable variety for quick and easy preparation. If you are a fan of Buffalo Mac & Cheese, try using a spicy BBQ sauce and habanero or pepper jack shredded cheese/caution: kids tend to prefer more traditional, sweeter BBQ sauce and milder, cheddar-type cheeses.
WHAT TO EXPECT: An innovative version of Mac & Cheese you just might enjoy more than your kids do! Also, almost guaranteed cleaned plates by the entire crew from ages 3 to 103!
Quick Campfire Apple Crisp
INGREDIENTS: Canned apple pie filling, 2 envelopes of maple & brown sugar flavored instant oatmeal, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, 2 slices of white bread
TIPS: Stir 4 heaping tablespoons of the pie filling, 2 packages of the instant oatmeal (dry, right out of the package, no water added), and 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar together before filling the pudgy pie.
WHAT TO EXPECT: A familiar taste of fall all year long. It may not be as perfect as mom’s was, but when it’s warm, you’ll be craving more!
I know these recipes are coming a bit late in the traditional camping season, but campfires are in style all year long. In fact, I use the camping “offseason” to try out new pudgy pie recipes and ingredient combos in the backyard. If I nail down the combos I like best, it allows me to save room on that next camping trip by only having to pack the ingredients I KNOW I’ll use.
One thing I never forget to pack is the cooking spray. Even though you are buttering the outside slices of bread to prevent sticking, I recommend generously spraying each side of the pie iron, as well. It greatly reduces pudgy pie sticking and makes cleanup much easier.
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Thanks for reading. If you try out one of these great pudgy pie recipes, let us know how your camping crew liked it. And if you have a favorite campfire recipe, we’d love if you’d share it in the comments box below. Remember, never be afraid to try something innovative around the campfire. You just might make that next campfire your favorite of all time!
A SPECIAL THANKS for the photography talents of Mark Subialka. His wonderful cover photo, cabin photo and close-up of the flames helped make this Blog Post come to life. Mark has that special spark, a magical light in his artist eye, that most of us can’t capture with a lens!