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This quick and easy camp stove fish curry is an Indian-inspired camping dinner! Prepare this sardine curry on a camp stove in less than 30 minutes.
This post is sponsored by King Oscar.
Who else is ready for camping season?!
That’s right– it’s warm outside, school’s out (or almost out) for the summer, and it’s time to grab your hiking boots, pack up the car with a camp stove and tent, and head out on an adventure!
And if you happen to be staying in a campground, it’s time to tantalize your camping neighbors with the lovely scent of your camping dinner.
This time, we’re making an easy fish curry on a camp stove!
Want more camping recipe ideas? Check out our campfire hot chocolate with peanut butter whiskey, campfire enchiladas, campfire lasagna and campfire fajitas.
What Inspired This Camp Stove Fish Curry?
Goan fish curry is a spiced sauce that originates in Goa, India. This mild curry is typically made with white fish or sardines and coconut milk.
Traditionally, the raw fish is marinated in citrus juice or vinegar (just like fish ceviche), before being added to the coconut curry.
For this easy camping version, we’re using canned sardines, and adding the citrus at the end instead of the beginning.
Sardines: A Perfect Protein for Camping
Recently I’ve begun camping with an Igloo BMX cooler, and it’s meant a major upgrade to our camping meals. Now we can include meals that need refrigeration, such as these campfire brats and sauerkraut and this salmon pesto pasta.
However, I like to have a few meals planned that are made with all shelf-stable ingredients. That way I can save space in my small-ish cooler.
And guys, canned sardines are perfect for camping!
Canned sardines are shelf stable, so you don’t have to worry about packing ice into a cooler. They’re a great way to add iron and protein into your active lifestyle, and they come packed in sauces, which means you can pack fewer things!
Goan Fish Curry As A Camping Dinner
For this easy camping dinner, I used King Oscar’s sardines– specifically, their Brisling Sardines in Zesty Tomato Sauce.
These flavor-packed sardines in zesty tomato sauce work perfectly in this camping dinner, because the tomato sauce helps add the “zing” you’d get in a traditional Goan fish curry from marinating the raw fish in an acid or vinegar.
Plus, the tomato sauce helps thicken the curry!
Do I Need Special Equipment for This Camp Stove Fish Curry?
This recipe is written for camp stove cooking. I use a Coleman 2-burner propane stove.
Other kitchen equipment that you might want (like a pot and pan) is listed in the recipe to help you plan and pack.
Can I Cook This Camp Stove Fish Curry in My RV or Home Kitchen Instead?
This recipe works perfectly on a traditional (or compact) stove top. On a stove top, use medium heat while cooking the curry, and follow the package directions for your rice.
Can I Cook this Over a Campfire?
Yes, but keep in mind that if the fire is too hot, the sauce could burn to the bottom of the pan. So stir often, and be careful not to burn yourself.
Tips for Campground Cooking
How can you make campground cooking easier? My two biggest suggestions are to plan ahead and to clean up promptly.
And then? Get back to your trip and go exploring!
Camp Stove Fish Curry
- small metal turner or spatula
- saucepan with lid (for rice)
- measuring cup (for rice)
- cutting board
- can opener (if cans aren't pop-top)
- bowls or plates
- spoons or forks
- 2 cups instant jasmine rice (or instant white rice)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 15 ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
- 15 ounce can coconut milk
- 8 ounces sardines packed in tomato sauce (2 cans) King Oscar Sardines in Zesty Tomato Sauce Recommended
- 1 lime, cut in half
- handful of cilantro
- Prepare camp stove with propane tank.
- Begin boiling water for rice, and cook according to package directions.
- Set flame to medium. Add olive oil to skillet, and heat until the oil begins to ripple. Add the garam masala and onion, and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until the spices are fragrant and the onion has softened.
- Add red pepper flakes, salt, and the can of tomatoes. Cook 4-5 minutes, until tomatoes are simmering.
- Add the sardines (with the tomato sauce) and the coconut milk. Bring to a simmer, and then squeeze half the lime juice into the curry.
- Add more salt if needed, and more red pepper flakes if you’d like it to be spicier.
- Quarter the remaining lime half. Serve the curry with the rice and a lime wedge. Optionally, serve with a few sprigs of cilantro.
What an amazing recipe idea to break from the tradition camping dinners! I have not used sardines packed in a tomato base like that. I am going to look for these in my store. We go to the BWCA every year and this will be an awesome recipe to impress my camping mates.
They’ll be SO IMPRESSED. Enjoy!!
Every summer we camp with a big group. About 4 families and we all pick a night to cook for the group. This would an excellent choice for my meal. This is a complete meal and the sardines are easy to pack up!
Nice! Have fun on your trip!!
Food is one of the biggest obstacles for me when it comes to camping more often. Well, food and the idea of getting my kids to sleep in a tent without it being a debacle, but that’s another issue all together. But while I’m not a lux-RV-camper either, the temptation is there because I want to be able to whip up great meals. After all, it doesn’t feel like much of a getaway to me if I have to settle for sub-par food. So I have to say, I love these recipes of yours – and I’m particularly smitten with this one in particular. It’s got so many fantastic things – great seafood (hooray for the bait-fish promotion!), big flavours, and a truly achievable camping meal that wouldn’t be out of place in the slightest in a home kitchen. Fantastic work Sarah. Keep it up.
Thanks Sean! Necessity is the mother of invention, right? I hope you get to try it 🙂
What a great idea! I had never thought of sardines for camping, but that makes perfect sense and its so easy to pack. We are a huge fan of curries and I think my husband will love this recipe. Thank you for the recipe!
This recipe is wonderful on so many levels. First, and foremost, it sounds delicious. My husband and I love any kind of curry dish and using sardines as the protein actually sounds fantastic. And you have really gotten us in the mood to go camping and make crazy-good food on the campfire! I am so excited to try this dish and we are already big fans of King Oscar, so this is doubly great. Thanks for the great recipe!
King Oscar is the best! Enjoy and have fun eating it outside 🙂
This is delicious! The flavour combo is amazing – especially when more traditional camp foods are no where as yummy as this. My partner is big on camping and always tries to convince me that the freeze drier foods are the way to go haha.
Thanks! And freeze dried foods are totally awesome sometimes for backpacking… but if you’re car camping it’s easy to get fancy!!
What an interesting recipe!! We do love our seafood so this dish would certainly be welcome in our home. We love to cook out and my daughter and family camp out a lot — I’ll be sharing this recipe with her. Also, I’ll be sure to look for the King Oscar brand.
Yay! Campers for the win! 😀 Enjoy if you try it at home, and I hope they get to try it while they camp!
We sold our RV last summer so our new version of camping is to rent a cabin with a full kitchen! This was so easy to do…and after hiking all day I especially loved how easy it was to put together for dinner! Not a drop left in the pan after scraping out every last bit of sauce.. I couldn’t believe how nice the sardines were…. the juice of the lime was a game changer…. so fresh and it really made the sauce/fish sing!
Yay! I’m so glad you loved it Michele!
Another bomb camping recipe, Sarah! You know, I hate sleeping outside or in tents, but I love the whole camping atmosphere with the crackling fire, the smell of fresh air and smokey wood… so if I could just come hang out and cook/eat by the fire with you and hop into a cabin afterward, that would be great 😉 Lol.
I love the sound of this curry. It sounds so warming and perfect for cool evenings outside, assuming you’re not camping in the sticky South. I bet the fellow campers would be super jealous! You might make some new friends 😉
Haha yes- you can totally camp in a cabin! 😀
And thanks! It’s perfect for crisp (not southern USA) evenings lol
This sounds amazing!! I would never have thought to put sardines in a curry, but now I can’t wait to try. And what is more fun that tantalizing your camping neighbors tastebuds with the smell of a homemade curry – need to up my camping food game 🙂
Yessss make that yummy scent go everywhere! Enjoy!
This sounds great! I have to add it to my camp recipe file – I love being creative when I’m camping. Sardines are a fave for adding a punch of flavour – this recipe is right up my alley!
Thanks Leslie! Enjoy!!
Wow! This curry sounds incredible! I would never think to make curry while camping but this recipe sounds perfect. And sardines? I need to try that!