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This campfire pasta marinara is a one-pot Dutch oven camping meal made with veggies, sauce, broth, and short-grain pasta.
One of my favorite comfort foods is pasta tossed in homemade marinara.
To me, fresh pasta sauce with garden tomatoes tastes like summer in a bowl. It’s one of life’s simple pleasures.
When we go camping, I don’t really want to make pasta sauce from scratch, but sometimes a bowl of pasta marinara sounds like the perfect dinner.
This campfire pasta marinara is a one-pot camping version of my homemade marinara, and is made with all shelf-stable ingredients.
Camping without a cooler? No problem.
Looking for more campfire dinner ideas? Try our campfire penne with vodka cream sauce, campfire hot dogs with peppers and onions, campfire burgers with grilled avocado and camp stove chickpea curry.
What Equipment Do I Need to Make Campfire Pasta Marinara?
You’ll need a non-enameled, cast-iron Dutch oven.
We recommend a campfire Dutch oven, because it’s so versatile. Here are some of our other favorite meals to cook in a campfire Dutch oven.
You’ll also want a knife to dice the veggies. I use this Dfacto high-carbon stainless steel santoku knife.
What Pasta Sauce Should I Use?
Use your favorite jarred pasta sauce. We’ll be adding veggies to the pasta sauce, but it helps to start with a sauce base that tastes great on its own!
My favorite is the Simply Nature organic pasta sauce from Aldi (pictured below).
What Kind of Pasta Should I Use?
When I make marinara sauce at home, I usually toss it with spaghetti.
However, since we’re using the one-pot pasta method here (which uses less liquid than I normally use with spaghetti), it’s easier to use a short-grain pasta such as penne, rigatoni or ziti.
Short-grain pasta is less likely to clump together or stick to the bottom of the pot than spaghetti.
How to Make Campfire Pasta Marinara
Start by making a campfire. Place your Dutch oven on the campfire grate near the hot part of the fire.
Add oil, diced peppers, onions and seasoning. Cook until the onions begin to soften.
Next, add a can of tomatoes.
Cook until the liquid begins to simmer.
Next, add vegetable broth and the pasta sauce to the Dutch oven.
Bring the liquid to a boil.
Add the pasta to the liquid.
Stir, and make sure that the pasta is totally covered with liquid. If needed, add water or extra broth to the pot to cover the pasta.
Continue cooking, stirring often, until the pasta is tender and most of the broth is absorbed.
Remove the pasta from the heat, and serve immediately.
Campfire Pasta Marinara
- campfire ring
- kitchen knife To dice veggies
- wooden spoon
- spoon (to serve)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 2 sweet bell peppers (diced, seeds + membranes removed) Or 6 mini sweet peppers
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon Italian herb mix
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 14 ounce can diced tomatoes (I like to use fire-roasted)
- 28 ounce jar marinara sauce (pasta sauce)
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 pound short-grain pasta (like penne, rigatoni, ziti or medium shells) Use gluten-free pasta if necessary, such as Banza or gluten-free Barilla
- 1 cup water (optional) Use if needed
- Prepare campfire: Heat coals until they are very hot, or let a campfire burn down until the wood is smoldering but without active flames.Add oil, diced onion, peppers, garlic, herbs and red pepper flakes to the Dutch oven. Set oven uncovered on coals. Cook about 3 minutes, or until the onions begin to sizzle.
- Add the diced tomatoes, and cook about 1 minute, or until the liquid begins to simmer.
- Add the broth and tomato sauce. Bring to a boil.
- Add the pasta and stir. Make sure the pasta is covered in water, adding additional broth or water if needed.
- Simmer the pasta in the broth until the pasta is tender and most of the broth is absorbed (about 15 minutes, depending on the type of pasta and how hot your campfire is). Stir the pasta often while cooking, making sure to scrape the bottom of the pot often to prevent sticking.
- If you hear the pasta sizzling, it's sticking to the pot. Add a little more water and stir to release any bits of pasta that stuck.
- Once the pasta is tender, remove it from the heat. If the pasta seems dry, add a little more water and stir.
- Serve immediately.
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