5 Ideas for Camping in the Backyard

Make It a Dinner Affair
Like we said, marshmallows are always a hit. But you can get a little crazier than that with campfire food. Fuse/Thinkstock

A backyard campout, if done right, should not just mirror a regular camping trip but steal all of the most important elements, improving them with the amenities of home. And what is a campout without dinner around the campfire?

There's always the old standbys: hot dogs toasted over a flame on a stick you whittled yourself, for instance. And no one is going to bed without a roasted marshmallow (or 13) in their stomach. But feel free to get creative. If you're really going for the camp experience, try roasting a fish -- wrapped in leaves the kids collect from the yard -- over the grill. Even maple leaves work, and they give your dinner some serious camp-cred [source: Martha Stewart].

Don't forget the tin foil -- wrapping a load of potatoes and onions in the stuff and letting them roast in the coals is a camping go-to. For dessert, if s'mores aren't enough, cut into a banana and peel a bit of it away. Fill it with a mixture of butter and brown sugar, and then seal it up with foil. Let the banana roast in its buttery, sugary skin, and you have a delicious, tropical dessert that evokes camping on the beach.