Planning Meals for Your Next Houseboat Vacation
Not sure how to conquer the task of meal planning on a houseboat trip? You’re not alone. It’s not the easiest task to put together a shopping list for many meals when you won’t be able to drop in at the store for something you forgot. But the good news is that many people have accomplished this before you and there’s a lot of advice out there. Here’s a distillation of a few main tricks that’ll make your meal planning easier.
Plan Based on Type of Meal
Don’t think about the total number of meals, but the total number of each kind of meal. If you’re out for a week and there are four of you, that’s 28 breakfasts. But each day you can have roughly the same foods for breakfast. Stock up on cereals, bread, butter, jam, and hot cereals that people can put together on their own. Keep it simple. Fruit is also great to have around, for breakfast and for snacking. Plan for one or two egg breakfasts, which will be easy to calculate.
For lunches, set out sliced cold cuts and cheeses and let people make their own sandwiches. Maybe you plan one big lunch and you buy enough tuna salad ingredients for one tuna salad lunch.
Dinners will be the most complicated, because you’ll all be hungry from a full day out on the water. Burgers and hot dogs are easy because they’re single serving. Pasta, including a mac-and-cheese night, is going to be simple and filling, and you can make a variety of pasta types with sauces. Tomato sauce one night, olive oil, parmesan, and chili flakes another night.
Basics That are Easy to Forget
- You’ll need a lot of water. If you’re renting the houseboat, talk to them about whether or not you’ll need extra water for cooking. You’re better off buying extra water, because you should all stay hydrated.
- Bring snacks. Plenty of them. It takes the pressure off meal times.
- Condiments are easy to over-buy. Don’t stress. You’re better with some leftover than not enough.
- Buy at least 10 bags of ice because it’ll keep your drinks cold as well as any meats and foods that need to stay cold.
And finally, when you go shopping, go in with a list and a plan. Take the time to write down what you want, because once you get in there you’ll be tempted to go crazy.