This easy Camping Lunch Idea is a Cold Green Bean Salad. It’s perfect for both road trips and camping adventures, requires zero cooking, and makes a perfect light lunch or quick side dish.
Last year, the husband and I went on a cross-country, National Park Adventure– without a cooler– and we ate FAR too much canned tuna. I mean, I love tuna, and tried to make exciting tuna salads— but I quickly learned that we needed more options.
For this year’s camping expedition– I branched out. I did bring tuna, but I also brought sardines, herring, and– you guessed it– canned beans! We ate this Easy Cold Green Bean Salad several times on our trip– and each time it was refreshing, quick, and delicious!
Camping Lunch Ideas: Easy and Light Meals
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from our long road trips, it’s that we need more than one TYPE of meal. For the hiking days, we need carbs and protein. Meals like Campfire Lasagna and Bean Burritos are perfect for active days where we need a lot of fuel to keep going.
However– there are other kinds of days. Long, relentless driving days. Days when the only exercise is walking into coffee shops, roadside attractions, and scenic overlooks. Go ahead– stop, get coffee, and stretch your legs– but chances are, you won’t be ravenously hungry like you are on a hiking day.
Those were the days when this Cold Green Bean salad made an excellent lunch. It’s light, it has some protein, and it’s healthy. We also ate this salad as a side dish with larger meal at a campground in Tucson, Arizona– because it was just TOO HOT to do much cooking!
Camping Lunch Idea: Making Cold Green Bean Salad
Everything that you need for this Cold Green Bean salad is shelf-stable, and can survive a long, hot car ride without a cooler. First things first– get some green beans! I like the French-cut style, but you can also grab regular green beans or wax beans.
Next, grab some almond slivers, a little oil, vinegar, mustard, and pepper. (If you don’t normally travel with condiments– I totally recommend it, especially if you’ll be cooking at campgrounds.)
If you’re making this salad on a long road trip– find a spot to pull over and make it. You’ll need to drain a can of green beans, and that’s probably not something that should happen in a moving car.
Next, mix up the oil, vinegar, mustard, and pepper, and then toss it with the green beans and almonds. Divide the salad between two bowls, enjoy, and keep on driving!
Quick Tip: Not a fan of canned green beans? Try this cooked green bean salad.
Camping Lunch Idea: Cold Green Bean Salad
This easy Camping Lunch Idea is a Cold Green Bean Salad. It's perfect for both road trips and camping adventures, requires zero cooking, and makes a perfect light lunch or quick side dish.
- 1 TB olive oil
- 1 tsp white wine vinegar
- 1 TB yellow mustard
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
Green Bean Salad:
- 1 14oz can green beans French cut or Regular* (See Recipe Notes)
- 1/4 cup almond slivers
- 1 can opener (unless the can is pop-top)
- bowls (for mixing salad + serving)
Mix all dressing ingredients together.
Drain the liquid from the green beans. Add the green beans and almonds into a bowl with the dressing, and toss to incorporate the dressing.
Divide among two bowls and serve.
Note: If substituting low-sodium canned green beans or fresh green beans, the mustard dressing will need a little salt.