Dirtbag dining: Campsite carbonara

This might just be my favorite adventure dinner.  It’s tasty, filling and simple to make.

I originally found this recipe on a fabulous Trail Cooking website which is full of clever camping food options.

I was pretty dubious when I read that the American adventurers were carrying fresh fragile eggs in their hiking packs…  But I’ve tested it and it works.  You should try it too!



  • 2  eggs
  • Lots of prosciutto (Ham , bacon and pastrami are all good alternatives)
  • Spaghetti (250 grams is a good amount for two hungry climbers)
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Spices (Black pepper, salt and dried herbs)
  • Water
  • Plastic container

How to make it


At home (or basecamp):

  1. Grab a ziploc bag and throw in a pinch of salt, pepper and dried herbs. 
  2. Break the spaghetti in half and put it in a plastic container.
  3. Nestle the eggs into the middle of the spaghetti nest and close the container up.
  4. Squash all ingredients into your pack.

If you pack the container nice and tight, the eggs should stay snug and safe.  They’ve survived some arduous journeys inside my pack. If they do break, its not the end of the world.


  1.  Slice the prosciutto (or rip it up if you don’t have a knife).
  2.  Fry the prosciutto for a few minutes then set aside (if you don’t have any other options, just tip it back into the packaging that you used to carry it in).
  3. Boil some water and cook the spaghetti in a pot on a fire or a stove.
  4. While the spaghetti is cooking, crack the eggs into your plastic container then add the cheese, spices and prosciutto.
  5. Clip the lid of your container on tightly and shake it all about.
  6. Drain the water out of your pot.
  7. Tip the contents of your plastic container back into the pot and heat for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8.  Eat all the tasty tasty carbs right out of the pot.


You’ll need a saucepan, a plastic container, a knife and a source of heat.

Tested on location

Hawkesbury River, Brooklyn, Australia

The eggs survived a journey across the Hawkesbury River in the front end of a kayak then a via-ferrata-style climb to the top of Eagle Rock.  See more on that adventure here.

Bell Supercrag, Blue Mountains, Australia

This Carbonara has also fueled quite a few redpoint attempts at the Bell Supercrag.  It warms you up on cold nights in the Blue Mountains and gives you the energy you need to climb hard.

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