What food do we take on the road?

In our early days of caravanning, we used to pack the van with all the food that we could imagine that we’d need and a few pre prepared meals. Nowadays we just ensure that the basics are on board; flour, sugar, rice, sauces and a few basic canned goods, not to mention fresh roasted coffee and one pre prepared meal to quickly heat up if we’re tired from driving. We then load any fresh goods from the home fridge and take off.

Our van has a 180 litre refrigerator freezer and I often wonder how long we could survive just on the staples that we carry. I’m sure that it would be quite a while.

Whatever we need can be bought in small country towns wherever we stop or as we pass through. We prefer to shop in family owned independent supermarkets like IGA as we feel that this will be of more benefit to the local community. The remotest of towns have good supplies, maybe not exotic ingredients but sometimes we have been pleasantly surprised. Country butchers have the best quality meat and we usually find ourselves stocking the van freezer to take plenty home with us. Months later we find ourselves enjoying a T Bone steak and remembering that Mick Haynes the butcher in Tocumwal has come up trumps again.

We’re always dropping in to see what’s on offer at local Community markets and rarely leave empty handed.

Tomatoes aplenty at the Talbot Market in Vic


Breakfast in the Camp Kitchen, Rutherglen

Of course when we’re on the coast there’s always a fish co-op. Fresh crayfish in Robe, SA, Oysters and Sea Scallops in Tasmania, King George Whiting in Vic and SA. Spanish Mackerel, Mud Crabs and Moreton Bay bugs in Qld, Threadfin Salmon and Wild Barramundi in WA the list is endless…oh and the Scallop Pies in Tasmania are worth the overnight sea voyage to get there.

Fish Co-Op, Apollo Bay, Vic
Crayfish Pots, Apollo Bay, Vic

13 thoughts on “What food do we take on the road?

  1. That’s cheering. One of the things that has put me off about your kind of lifestyle was the presumption that cooking would always have to be basic: sort of boy scout cookery. Now I can see it offers the opportunity to try local specialities and enjoy local markets. That fish sounds good!


  2. Totally agree with you Itchin! We spent 18 months on the road and ate like kings most of the time, even crossing the Gibb where fresh anything is rare! 190 litre fridge freezer carries plenty and the staples, including some canned saftey stock are always at hand. Our meals were generally simpler, just because its easier and in the restricted space, simpler, but with our Weber BabyQ , jus about anything is possible. And of course, your comments on local butchers, fish co-ops and markets just makes the menu plannng even more exciting!


  3. We have always enjoyed eating on the road…we, unlike many others we have met on the road, use our oven to create meals that we would cook at home. So many we have met say they don’t use their oven as it makes the van smelly, but obviously I wouldn’t cook anything too garlicky. Otherwise it is oven meals as usual. The second best thing is the Weber BaybQ…perfect for BBQ’s and roast meals. Just thinking about it makes me want to get on the road again.


    1. We believe that if you don’t use the oven it’s just a fancy cupboard. Ours gets a serious workout and even more so if we’re stuck in bad weather. Though I must admit that we got so engrossed in Downton Abbey that we didn’t realise that we’d run out of gas and the lamb roast was in limbo.


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