For some strange reason, my husband and my boys just love camping. I don’t really get it, but I go along with it anyway. I don’t mind being outdoors too much. We try to go on a few trips a year since it’s a pretty frugal way to vacation. We throw our camping totes, sleeping bags, and tent in the van, fill up a cooler and go. I try to keep the meals simple because I don’t want to spend a lot of my time cooking and cleaning up. One of my all-time favorite meals to make is my One-Pot Spaghetti.
This dish is so hearty and filling – the perfect way to end a day full of outdoor activities. It comes together fairly quickly, so I don’t have to worry about making a bunch of starving boys wait to eat. Or worse, they get impatient and eat something else instead. I start off with some ground beef, which you can cook at home, or cook at the campsite. Cooking it at home saves you a little time, and you don’t have to worry about raw meat in your cooler.
How much you use totally depends on the size of your family. My recipe fed four adults and three kids pretty easily.
To the cooked meat I add two jars of pasta sauce. Then I fill each jar with water and add that in too. You can use any kind of sauce you like, but I like to spring for the good stuff so it’s nice and flavorful and I don’t have to add a lot of extra ingredients. The simpler the better.
Thin spaghetti noodles are my favorite, and they cook the fastest. You can also use regular spaghetti noodles, which I’ve done before. I don’t recommend using shaped noodles like penne or rotini. It’s just not as good.
Break those noodles in half so that they can be submerged in the sauce. Then you just stir them in and let them cook.
It should take about 20 minutes for the noodles to be completely done. Depending on the altitude you are at, it could take a little less time or a little more. You’ll know it’s done when the noodles are tender and the liquid is absorbed. Stir and check often.
You can eat it by itself, or serve with some salad greens and a loaf of bread to stretch the meal out. Share with your camping neighbors if you have too much. Just don’t share with any critters.
Even if they do look really hungry.