kawarthaCHOW – Campfire Cooking

Entertain the kids while camping with this recipe for muffins baked inside oranges

Campfire Muffins (photo: Chris Rochelle / CHOW.com)
Campfire Muffins (photo: Chris Rochelle / CHOW.com)

August is here.

That means there’s one month left until school starts and we all want to savour these last precious days of summer.

For many of us, that means cramming everyone into the family vehicle (carving out a space for the dog) and heading out camping. There’s nothing better than the call of a loon, a tree- and rock-bordered lake, and the smell of a camp fire.

When we started camping with kids, I realized that our camping experience had changed — it was no longer a crib board and a cooler of beer. We had to entertain the kids and teach them the ways of the wild.

Here’s a recipe that does both. It’s delicious and not marshmallow-based. The muffins are steamed in the rind of the oranges and the flavour is amazing. They’re a great treat for the night or during a cooler day. Just be careful not to burn yourself (it’s also a good way to teach your kids about fire safety)!

Campfire Muffins


  • 6 whole oranges
  • 1 box blueberry muffin mix or chocolate cake mix
  • the ingredients that would be on the box usually
  • 3/4 cup (180 ml) milk or water
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs


  1. Cut oranges in half around the equator and carefully scoop out the center of the oranges. It’s important keep the orange peel intact.
  2. Fill one half of the orange with the batter, put the other half on top, and wrap in aluminum foil.
  3. Carefully place the foiled oranges in a hot camp fire (preferably coals and not burning flames). Turn every couple of minutes.
  4. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes and check one muffin (the one in the hottest part of the fire). If it’s fully cooked, then carefully remove the rest of the muffins (I usually check each one).

Happy Trails!

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Elaine McCarthy
Elaine McCarthy is the Co-ordinator of the PC Cooking School, located upstairs at the Great Canadian Superstore at Lansdowne Place in Peterborough. Elaine has been cooking professionally for over 20 years and running the cooking school for five years. A mother of two girls, she has a passion for healthy eating and for teaching children about the importance of the food that we consume. Be sure to check our column about the PC Cooking School and facility rental. You can follow Elaine on Twitter at @PlanxtyIrwin.