Grilled salmon in foil over a campfire

The ideal camping recipe: Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

How I came up with this Grilled Salmon in Foil recipe was totally by accident. We were on our way to go camping in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. About 30 minutes into the trip, we realized we forgot to bring our food!

So we stopped at a supermarket and bought a weekend’s worth of groceries. Since it was getting late, we decided to feed the kids later during our usual potty break at a Target store, and decided that us adults were going to eat dinner later at the campsite.

Coming up with the Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire recipe

Since we weren’t going to eat until after we set up camp, my husband and I decided to treat ourselves to a nice salmon fillet. I thought we could cook the fish on the campsite fire pits, since they’re covered with grills. However, I didn’t want to cook the salmon directly on the grill as I thought the fish would stick to it.

Need an easy camping recipe? Make this Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire recipe with a side dish of vegetables. It's delicious and healthy!

Instead, I came up with the idea of creating a foil packet for the salmon, and using a store bought fish marinade as the seasoning. Adding some sliced veggies to the packet as a side dish would be easy to do, too. My thinking was as I grilled salmon in foil, the vegetables would cook at the same time. The marinade would flavor both the salmon and the vegetables and keep everything nice and moist. One pot cooking – except it wasn’t a pot but a foil pouch!

So my husband grabbed a bottle of lemon pepper marinade. I picked out some pre-sliced mushrooms, an onion, and a package of green, yellow and red peppers. We already had foil in our camper. All set and ready to barbeque salmon in foil!

Enjoying Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

Our Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire was delicious. The salmon and vegetables were perfectly cooked, moist, and flavorful. Not bad for a last minute campfire salmon recipe!

This Mama’s tips for cooking Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

I love salmon, but you could make your foil packets with mahi mahi, catfish or freshly caught fish!

Do you have a favorite bottled marinade for fish? I recommend using a bottle of good quality Italian vinaigrette instead as the bottled seafood marinades I find at the store have ingredients I don’t like such as high fructose corn syrup.

If you don’t have marinade or vinaigrette, you can use olive oil, salt, pepper, juice of one lemon, plus some dill or Old Bay. (We always keep Old Bay in our camper for seasoning and grilling freshly caught fish.)

Use Old Bay to season Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

If you don’t like peppers for your grilled salmon foil pouches, try other vegetables like summer squash, zucchini, and tomatoes. Or bring a pack or two of frozen veggies along camping to make this grilled salmon in foil recipe. I like bringing frozen foods along when camping to help keep food cold in the cooler. The food usually thaws in time for dinner in a day or two.

Use heavy duty aluminum foil to make the salmon foil packets. If you don’t have any, fold over regular foil to make a double layer – then use two double layers. You don’t want the salmon foil pouch to spring a leak and lose all that yummy moisture (which steams the fish) during the cooking process. So make sure your foil packet is wrapped well.

Use heavy duty foil to make Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

Cooking time for the salmon foil pouch can be hard to judge. I cooked our thick salmon fillet for 20 minutes and it was perfect. However, it was cold out and the fire wasn’t all that big. If your campfire is roaring or your fish fillet is on the thin side, you may want to cut down the grilled salmon in foil cooking time.

If you have any, you can add some lemon slices or herb sprigs on top of the salmon.

The ideal camping recipe: Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire

Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire


  • 1/2 bottle good quality Italian vinaigrette or fish marinade
  • 1 large salmon fillet – enough for 2 people
  • vegetables – peppers, onions and mushrooms – enough for 2 people


  1. Cut salmon into two pieces to make it easier for serving later.
  2. Chop up vegetables into slices or strips. Use enough peppers, mushrooms and onions to make a good sized side dish for two people.
  3. Place two large sheets of heavy duty aluminum foil on table. Fold up the sides so the marinade doesn’t run off the sheets.
  4. Place salmon fillet on top of foil. Cover fish with marinade. Then cover fish with vegetables.
  5. Carefully wrap fish and vegetables in foil to make a packet. Use more foil if necessary. Pinch the edges of the foil packet so the marinade doesn’t leak out.
  6. Place foil packet on grill over roaring fire or hot coals.
  7. Turn packet over every 10 minutes or so.
  8. Depending on the size and thickness of the fish – and how hot your fire is – cook the fish at least 20 minutes.
  9. Remove packet from grill. Carefully peel or slice it open. Remove fish and vegetables and serve on plates.
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 30 Minutes
Servings: Dinner for 2
  • Serving size: 1/2 of recipe

Old Bay Seasoning for Seafood, Poultry, Salads & Meats, 6-Ounce CanisterOld Bay Seasoning for Seafood, Poultry, Salads & Meats, 6-Ounce CanisterReynolds Wrap Heavy Duty Foil, 130 Sq FtReynolds Wrap Heavy Duty Foil, 130 Sq FtWish-Bone Salad Dressing, House Italian, 16 OunceWish-Bone Salad Dressing, House Italian, 16 OunceKraft Zesty Italian Dressing 16 Oz (Pack of 3)Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing 16 Oz (Pack of 3)

It's so easy to make this Grilled Salmon in Foil Over a Campfire when you're camping or on the grill during a backyard cookout party. Each packet contains enough fish and vegetables for two people. Not only is this fish grilling recipe easy but it's healthy, too!

Check out the Best Gluten Free Products List resource!

5 thoughts on “Grilled salmon in foil over a campfire

  1. Dan

    I love Salmon and know have a new way to cook it! I love your idea of adding fresh veggies to the foil pack! I’ll definitely be trying this one. Thanks!

  2. Shelby

    I am really jealous of those who can cook salmon! Grumpy won’t touch it so I only get it when I’m visiting my mom & dad or go out to eat! Sounds so yummy and I love that you cooked it at a campfire. Many of my best childhood memories are of our family cooking at camp over the fire!

    1. Anne-Marie Nichols Post author

      Until I started making my own salmon, I only ate it if my mom cooked it. She usually poached it and most restaurants couldn’t touch how well she did it. However, grilling salmon is the way to go, so make some for yourself, grill something else for Grumpy and have the same side dishes.

  3. Joe

    Looks great and scary at the same time! I would be afraid of overcooking them! I just did some salmon on a plank at my blog. First time using a plank and the grill. Come take a look when you get a chance.

    Would love your ideas and opinions!



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