Early in your Scout's career, they will take a turn at "Grub Master" on an Outing. Each Scout Patrol on an outing will be responsible for their own meals, adult leaders do not provide or prepare meals for them. Each Patrol will have an assigned Grub Master who provides the menu planning (in consultation with the other Patrol members), shopping, packing, and overseeing of the cooking and cleanup for the scheduled meals on the outing.
Being a Grub Master will satisfy some Rank Advancement and Merit Badge requirements, and build skills such as planning, budgeting, shopping smartly, and of course, cooking.
This responsibility includes:
- Planning the meals for their Patrol. This may include "Cracker Barrel" (late night snacks).
- Preparing a Budget
- Purchasing the food and supplies
- Cooking or preparing the meals during the Outing
- Submitting receipts for Reimbursement.
Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmasters or the designated Outings Coordinator will assign Grub Masters, usually after seeking volunteers and those in need of service for rank advancement or merit badge completion. The Adult or Youth Leaders (SPLs or ASPLs) may provide:
- Instruction and guidance
- Any food allergies or restrictions
- A budgeted dollar amount per Scout
- The number and type of meals and snacks to prepare for
- A list of necessary supplies not provided by the Troop (cutlery, serving pieces, paper products, etc.)
The Scout will prepare a Meal Plan and return it for approval prior to purchasing food or supplies. This Plan should include:
- An estimated total budget
- A menu plan for each Meal
- A Shopping List
- A list of needed cookware, serving pieces, and other items needed to compare to Troop inventory.
Following the outing, the Grub Master will bring their expense receipts to an Adult Leader for submission to the Troop Treasurer for reimbursement.
Grub Master Helpful Tips:
- Review the Cooking section in the Scout Handbook (Chapter 10) before being Grub Master. This Chapter provides great information, instructions, recipes, and tips including clean up.
- Consider pre-cooking so all that is needed is re-warming once in camp. This cuts down on prep time and cooking time while at the camp out and the Scout feeds his Patrol sooner than later.
- Write the recipe for that specific meal on the bag or include a copy in the bag along with all the needed ingredients to help with organization for the meal. A gallon Ziploc bag works well.
- Pre-measure ingredients placing them in labeled Ziploc bags.
- Know about any allergies or eating restrictions for Scouts being fed.
- If doing Dutch oven meal, allow time to heat the coals which is about 30-45 minutes to be ready to cook on the coals. Know the number of coals needed on top and bottom of the Dutch oven for the particular recipe.
- Think about utensils and pans/pots/ Dutch oven needed to cook and serve the meals. These can be borrowed from the Troop (check with the Quartermaster) or brought from home. These items may need to be obtained from the Troop storage and placed in the trailer before the outing. Be sure to label anything brought from home that should be returned home.
- If it is chilly out, think about providing hot cocoa or apple cider.