Tuesday, September 26, 2023


Make-ahead foil packet meals. Warning: You’ll drool

By Gail Marsh
Okay, so that title’s a bit of a mouthful. What’s a better mouthful is eating make-ahead foil packet meals. Yummy! What I like best about foil packet meals is that you can prepare them ahead of time. (I recently wrote an article about how to use your RV more. Making food ahead of time is a good start!) Once they’re prepared, store them in the fridge, and then cook them on the grill or in your RV oven. Options, people! And did I mention yummy?

Everyone has their favorite meals. Because hubby and I are carnivores, we enjoy all kinds of meat. Before I share my top three favorites, let’s talk about foil. There’s been an ongoing debate about cooking with foil – specifically when said foil touches the food. The fear is that high temperatures may cause the aluminum to leach into the food, and subsequently get into your system. The jury is still out on how much aluminum must leach for it to be a dangerous health risk. Most trusted sources maintain that the amount of aluminum your body might ingest by eating foods cooked inside aluminum is minimal.

Now, back to the yummy! Here are my favorite foil packet recipes. One for chicken, one for beef, and one for shrimp. Enjoy!

Photo by: NeighborFood

Hamburger and Veggie Packet

What you’ll need:

• 1 pound lean ground hamburger

•  1 package dry onion soup mix

•  4 small potatoes, peeled and sliced thin

•  2 cups chopped carrots (or fresh green beans)

•  2 tablespoons olive oil

•  1 teaspoon garlic powder

•  Salt and pepper

•  1 large onion, sliced

•  1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup

What you’ll do:

1. Start the grill/campfire. (Or preheat the oven to 375 degrees.)

2. In a bowl, combine ground beef and dry soup mix. (Use your hands, it’s easiest.)

3. Form the meat into four patties.

4. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining ingredients (except for the onion slices and soup).

5. Spray non-stick vegetable spray on four foil pieces (each sized approximately 12” by 18”).

6. Divide the veggie mixture into four equal parts. Put one part into the center of each foil piece.

7. Top the veggies with one onion slice.

8. Place a burger on top of the onion.

9. Put two tablespoons of condensed mushroom soup on top of the burger.

10. Completely seal foil packets. Grill, hamburger facing up, at medium heat until veggies are tender, and meat reaches 160 degrees – approx. 40 minutes. (Or place the packets on a large baking sheet. Bake for 35-45 minutes.)

This recipe was adapted from the food blog, NeighborFood

BBQ Chicken Packets

What you’ll need:

• 1.5 pounds baby potatoes, sliced thin

• 2 teaspoons olive oil

• 1 Tablespoon seasoning salt

• ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

• 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

• ¼ cup bacon bits

• ¾ cup shredded cheddar cheese

• 1 cup barbeque sauce

• 2/3 cup chopped green onions

• Sour cream

What you’ll do:

1. Start the grill/campfire. (Or preheat the oven to 375 degrees.)

2. Spray non-stick vegetable spray on four foil pieces (each sized approximately 12” by 18.”)

3. Put equal amounts of potatoes and onions in the middle of each foil piece.

4. Drizzle oil over potatoes and onions and sprinkle with seasoning salt and black pepper.

5. Brush BBQ sauce over both sides of chicken.

6. Top veggies with one chicken breast per foil piece.

7. Completely seal foil packets.

8. Put on grill with chicken side up and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and chicken has reached 165 degrees. (If using the oven, bake for 35 minutes or until chicken reaches 165 degrees.)

9. Remove from grill and brush chicken with additional BBQ sauce, if desired.

10. Top with bacon bits and cheese and return open packets to grill for 5 minutes (or until cheese melts.) Garnish with onions and sour cream if you like.

Pineapple teriyaki shrimp

What you’ll need:

• 20 oz. canned pineapple chunks, drained

• 2 large red bell peppers

• 1 large green bell pepper

• 3 cups sugar snap peas

• 1 ½ cups teriyaki sauce (the thicker, the better)

• 1 clove garlic, minced

• 2 teaspoons ginger

• 1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp

• 2 tablespoons olive oil

• Green onions and sesame seeds (garnish, if desired)

What you’ll do:

1. Start the grill/campfire. (Or preheat the oven to 400 degrees.)

2. Spray non-stick vegetable spray on four foil pieces (each sized approximately 12” by 18.”)

3. Combine pineapple (drained), peppers (chopped), peas, garlic, and ginger in a large bowl. Toss with 1 cup teriyaki sauce to coat evenly.

4. Place equal amounts of veggies in the middle of each foil piece.

5. Top each packet with equal amounts of shrimp.

6. Drizzle olive oil over shrimp.

7. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

8. Drizzle remaining ½ cup teriyaki sauce over shrimp.

9. Completely seal foil packet.

10. Place on grill, shrimp side down for 5 minutes. Then flip and cook an additional 4 minutes.

Let packets rest for 2 minutes, garnish with sesame seeds and onions, if desired.


Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh is an avid RVer and occasional work camper. Retired from 30+ years in the field of education as an author and educator, she now enjoys sharing tips and tricks that make RVing easier and more enjoyable.


  1. Our favorite foil pack is pork chop with squash and onions. Season with salt, pepper and a tablespoon of brown sugar.

  2. About 12 years ago we wrapped hot dogs and hamburger patties in foil and cooked it on the car engine while driving the 2 grandchildren to an event. Had a picnik stop at the halfway point and they were astonished at how good it tasted.
    Our grandson has been interested in cooking ever since and has gotten really good on the outdoor grill. Now with your idea of including the veggies under the pattie and cooking over a campfire, I am ready to experiment again.

  3. As soon as aluminum foil was invented and available, my mother was making meals in Al foil 60 years ago in a communist Eastern European country. So nothing new under the sun, Gail.


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