Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Campsite Meals at Bonnaroo

I just returned from my sixth year covering Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival for the newspaper I work for — the Memphis Flyer. Bonnaroo is a four-day outdoor festival in Manchester, Tennessee (about 4 1/2 hours away from Memphis) with multiple stages, campgrounds, and an average of 80,000 attendees. The fest takes place on a massive farm, and the campgrounds are on the farm's outskirts while the festival takes place in the center of the property (it's called Centeroo).

There's tons of vegan food for sale inside Centeroo, but unless you're out there to watch a band or attend an event (comedy, cinema, workshop, yoga, etc.), that's a long walk in the hot sun just for a meal. I'd say our campsite this year was about a mile from Centeroo and maybe two miles from the big main stage. So I always pack lots of easy campsite meals for breakfasts and lunches. That's what this post is about, but you can read about all the food I purchased inside Centeroo in last night's post.

Here was our home for the weekend. Our tent — not pictured — was to the left of the shade canopy. Please note that those cans of sausages on top of the cooler are not mine! Paul brought weird canned meat and stew for the campsite.

We arrived on Thursday afternoon, and I stopped at Walmart Subway (Manchester is a tiny town with very few options for vegan food outside of the fest — just Subway and Taco Bell) for a Veggie Delite Sandwich. But on Friday morning, I started digging into the snacks I'd stashed. Breakfast on Friday was one of my fave Bonnaroo campsite treats — Instant Noodles! I get these imitation chicken kosher noodle cups at Kroger. They're vegan! I pack a portable gas stove and a pot for boiling water, so instant cups are my go-to.

Every morning at the campsite started with Instant Coffee with Oat Milk (stashed in the cooler). I'm typically a coffee snob, but I have a weird thing for Cafe Bustelo.

Lunch on Friday was a GoPicnic meal with Plantain Chips and Black Bean Dip, Edamame & Pumpkin Seed Mix, Ginger Peanut Trail Mix, and an Apricot Fruit Strip. I love these meals! They're so snacky and perfect for camping. 

We made a Walmart run on Friday afternoon. We typically hit up the Walmart for clean bathrooms, ice, beer, and A/C at least once a day while we're at Bonnaroo. While I was there, I picked up some Tribe Garlic & Herb Hummus, which I snacked on with baby carrots and Beanfield's black bean chips all weekend. By the way, I noticed this year that the Manchester Walmart went all out on vegan food! They had Field Roast Chao Cheese and sausages in stock! They must have known the hippies were coming.

On Saturday morning, I'd planned to hit up a 9 a.m. vinyasa flow class in Centeroo. And I wanted a super-healthy breakfast to power me through. So I made these Earnest Eats A.M. Trail Mix Oats.

These were made with a supergrain blend (oats, quinoa, and amaranth), raisins, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, and coffee flour (for caffeine!). I added freeze-dried bananas and strawberries and a packet of Justin's Chocolate Hazelnut Butter. So good!!!

Later in the day, I grabbed a rice bowl from Centeroo for lunch, but it wasn't very filling. And it didn't satisfy my craving for fresh veggies. It was so hot this year! The sun was bearing down and temps were in the 90s, and my body was begging for fresh veggies. So on our Walmart trip Saturday afternoon, I grabbed one of those prepared salads with the individual compartments of dressing and toppings. The only one I could find that was almost vegan was one with mixed greens, walnuts and almonds, dried cranberries, raspberry vinaigrette, and feta. The feta was in a separate container, so I tossed that out (yuck). I added a scoop of my hummus for extra protein.

By Sunday, the last day at the festival, Paul and I were both feeling a little worn out. Lots of beer, hot sun, and not enough sleep (music goes on until 4 a.m. or later, and it's impossible to sleep past 7 a.m. in a hot tent) will do that to you. I packed these Earnest Eats Detox Oats just for the occasion. They were lemon-maple-cayenne oats, and honestly, they weren't tasty at all. But I forced myself to eat them because they had good-for-you stuff.

To treat myself for eating not-so-yummy oats, I had a second breakfast of Dr. McDougall's Teriyaki Noodles. These were delicious!

Since it was so hot, I made it a point to drink lots of hydrating, electrolyte-boosting Coconut Water! And hey, check out the cool mosaic guitar that Paul won at Bonnaroo's silent auction on Sunday!


vegan.in.brighton said...

Good job with the second breakfast! I always do that if my first attempt at eating something good for me is a bust. This post reminded me of being in my early twenties when I'd go to Reading Festival every year, we always did a beer, ice, toilets run every day or two and I always grabbed some hummus. Fun times!

Susan said...

I love noodle and oat cups! When I am working at OzComicCon, they are so helpful given the lack of vegan food options at the venue. Also great for travelling on airlines that don't have vegan food.