Battle the Chill With These 4 Perfect Soup Recipes

Upgrade a cold campout with a recipe that warms the insides.

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Carrot and Onion Soup

Enjoy this fresh-tasting soup as an appetizer; or add beans or chicken to make it a meal. Serves 4.

  • 4 cups carrots (fresh or dehydrated)
  • 3 vegetable bouillon cubes
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. arrowroot or kudzu powder (substitute cornstarch or potato flakes)
  • ½ cup dried onions
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
    (or ½ tsp. garlic powder)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. dried parsley
  • ½ tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. turmeric
  • ½ tsp. black pepper

At Home
Store all dry ingredients (except bouillon) in a zip-top bag. Pack carrots and lemon separately (or stow lemon juice in a small plastic container).

In Camp
Slice carrots (if using fresh). Bring all ingredients to a boil
and simmer 15 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.

Rum and Black Bean Soup

Try a Caribbean twist on a camp classic. Serves 2 as an appetizer.

  • 1 cup dehydrated black beans
  • ½ medium onion, chopped
  • ½ stalk celery, chopped
  • 3 sprigs parsley, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 cube beef bouillon
  • 2 cups water
  • 50 ml dark rum
  • lime juice to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

At Home
Pack onion, celery, and parsley in a small zip-top bag and thyme and bay leaf in another. Stow other ingredients in separate containers. Bring a mini bottle of
rum or store in a flask.

In Camp
Cook onion, celery, parsley, thyme, and bay leaf in butter over low heat for 10 minutes. Add bouillon, water, rum, and beans. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until beans are tender. Add more water as necessary to keep beans covered. Discard bay leaf and stir in lime juice, salt, and pepper.

Creamy Clam Chowder

Seafood, potatoes, and bread make this a hearty meal. Serves 4.

  • 1/4 lb. butter (1 stick)
  • 1 medium-large onion
  • 1 Tbsp. flour
  • 32 oz. milk from powder
  • 6 oz. dehydrated potato flakes or hash browns
  • 6.5 oz. canned clams (tuna or salmon also work)
  • pepper to taste
  • sourdough bread (optional)

At Home
Place dry ingredients in separate zip-top bags.

In Camp
Sauté the chopped onion in the butter. When the onion is translucent, add the flour to the melted butter, making a paste. Slowly add the rehydrated milk while stirring. Add the clams and potatoes. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are rehydrated. Sprinkle on pepper and serve with sourdough bread.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This flavorful soup brings two kinds of heat. Serves 4.

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp. flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 3 serrano chilies, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 5 cups water
  • juice from 2 medium limes
  • 5 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 3/4 cup dried corn
  • 3/4 cup dried diced tomatoes
  • 7 oz. chicken (from pouch)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2-3 green onions for garnish (optional)
  • 2 cups tortilla chips (optional: crush to save space)

At Home
Pack onion, parsley, chilies, garlic, and cumin in one zip-top bag and corn and tomatoes in another. Stow the other ingredients separately.

In Camp
Add first five ingredients to a large pot and sauté in oil until onions are translucent. Add water, lime juice, bouillon cubes, corn, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, add chicken, and cook for an additional 5 to 6 minutes. Garnish with sliced green onions and tortilla chips.

Cook Like a Pro

Get more soup and other camp recipes in our backcountry cookbooks. Bonus: They’re available in whatever format you prefer.

Book: Trailside Recipes ($13)

E-book: BACKPACKER’s Best Recipes: Lunch and Dinner ($4; Kindle, iPad, and nook)

From 2022