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Campfire Cooking | The Minnesotan Tinfoil Dinner

When camping, you can’t beat a one-dish wonder. Consider your tinfoil doubles as a plate; maybe it’s a no-dish meal. Bonus!

Campfire Grilled Foil Packet Dinner is one of those fun meals to cook and enjoy eating. It’s simple to prepare and can be cleaned up in minutes.  Plus, a hot meat and veggie meal is always so satisfying. 

Foil Packet Dinners are good any time of the year. It’s a complete meal you can cook in aluminum foil for easy cleanup. The versatility allows everyone to make theirs just the way they want it. Today we are making Hobo Dinners which is simply, hamburger, patties, carrots, onions, and potatoes. You can use this method for salmon and asparagus, sausage and peppers, chicken and mushrooms, or any other combo. 

The key to a good foil packet meal is to have the protein cook to 165° then the veggies are also done. Heavy-duty tin foil is also best, especially if you do not like things to get golden crispies or burned edges. 


  • Pick one Protein per pouch
  • 2 chicken leg quarters or one breast, 1  pound Ground beef Pattie’s, Salmon filet or Italian sausage. 
  • Pick your veggies
  • 6 spears of asparagus
  • 3/4 cup baby carrots sliced in two
  • 2 ears of corn on the cob
  • 3/4 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 potatoes thickly sliced 
  • 2 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 sweet or white onions
  • Drizzle of Olive Oil or a ¼ -½  stick of butter 
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • I package of Lipton Recipe Secrets, Onion flavor (Optional)

This makes 2 foil wraps. Refrain from filling. It will take too long to cook. 

Cooking Instructions

Get a nice fire going, a bed of hot coals is best for cooking. 

Step 1

Layout two large pieces of aluminum foil across one another like a cross. 

Step 2

Wash and thickly slice the vegetables. Slices are easier and faster to cook than cubes or quarters. Pat dry, so seasoning sticks. 

Step 3

Add the carrots, sliced mushrooms, and cut-up potatoes into a large Ziploc bag. Drizzle with Olive Oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat.If you prefer you can use butter in place of the olive oil.  If this is the case, toss a few 4 or 5 Tablespoons right in the foil packet and season. Ther is no need to toss in a ziplock.


If using Lipton Secrets seasoning, toss the vegetables in the drizzled oil along with one packet of Lipton seasoning.

Step 4

Pile the veggies in the center of your tin foil and place the protein on top. If you have an ice cube, toss it in to keep moisture and help steam the meal.  

Step 5

Close the sheet of foil around the meat and veggies. Bring two sides up to the top and fold over the edge and roll down. Repeat on the second tinfoil.  Do not seal the foil tight. Allow an air pocket for steam to build. 

There is no secret science as to how to place the food in the foil. 

If you do not have a campfire, you can cook these in an oven at 450 degrees Fahrenheit. A BBQ grill will also work. Be sure to close the grill lid to trap the heat. If cooking in the oven, set the foil packets on a large baking sheet. This helps you remove them from the oven.  They are known to leak a little butter. 

Chicken should always reach an internal temperature of 165° when done. Use a meat thermometer to check the doneness of the meat.

Foil packet dinners take longer to cook on the grill. The exact time will depend on your type of grill and how hot it gets. They will cook quicker with the lid closed on the grill. Cook time is about 30 minutes. They are close when the pouch expands and puffs up like a balloon. This means steam is gathering and creating goodness.

Remove the packets with metal tongs or leather work gloves. There is always juice in the bottom, so be careful when opening not to spill the hot liquid or get burned by the steam when opening the packet. 

Open and enjoy! 

PREP TIME 10 minutes

COOK TIME 30- 35 minutes

TOTAL TIME 45 minutes