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Festival Dining - Food Ideas

The temptation to spend the weekend stuffing our faces with the greasy delights that are on offer at festivals can be too tempting, however, those ridiculously long queues are such a waste of valuable party time when you can sort out your own food. Even if the festival has ‘upped its game’ and provide more exotic treats, the extensive dip in your wallet is the last thing you want when you’ve just spent £xxx on your ticket and all your camping gear.


All you need is a mini portable cooking system, usually a barbecue, and a cooling system, whether it’s a powered cool box or cool bags, you’d be surprised what you can create outdoors when you’ve got the gear. Powered coolers will keep your food fresh for as long as they have power, passive cool boxes will work for 24-48 hours and cool bags will work for up to 24 hours so your meal options are endless. Make sure to eat any perishables on the first day if you only have a cool bag to prevent any illness.


Disclaimer: Please check with your individual festival what cooking gear they allow. Not all events allow gas and stoves.



To start off the day you can fill your bellies with a full English – yes outdoor cooking equipment is capable of this. As long as you have heat and a base to fry your sausages and bacon you’re good to go. Toast your bread and warm up your beans in a pan over the heat and enjoy. Or you can even take a readymade breakfast that won’t need to be kept cool. Their foil pouch simply needs to be placed in boiling water and a scrumptious breakfast will be ready in no time. Take a look at the Wayfayrer option.


Tip: Boiling water is easier than you think. Put water in a pan over the heat from your barbecue or stove, it will naturally take longer than a kettle but it won’t take too long to get that water hot.


If this sounds a bit too unhealthy for you, porridge is another option. Make it the ‘proper’ way in a pan over your compact stove or simply use the handy pots and packets that just need water. Simply boil water in a pan over your stove and you can instantly have porridge ready to start the day. You can make your cooking experience as easy as you like.


Or for the easiest and quickest option… cereal bars – perfect as a snack too.



Premade sandwiches can be kept in your cooler ready to be scoffed whenever you feel peckish. Keep lots of other little treats hidden away in your cooler ready to snack on; anything from mini sausage rolls to chocolate, to fruit. Whatever takes your fancy you can have.


Tip: If you don’t want to spend every meal time cooking, make sure you take plenty of snacks to keep you dancing all weekend. Packs of dried nuts are a great idea; they are a good source of energy to keep you going in between meal times when you’re stuck in the middle of the crowd.



Premade dinners from home can be transferred to the festival campsite. Chilli con carne, stew, curry, you name it, whatever you like make it at home, store it in containers and leave it in your cooler to stay fresh until you’re ready to eat it. It won’t take long to heat up on your stove.


Don’t restrict yourself just because you are going to a festival, you can eat whatever you want!


Any more ideas? Let us know in the comments below.

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Sally Naylor 23-06-16 21:35
Great ideas, however, most festival sites don't allow gas stoves or charcoal bbqs.

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