How to Cook When Camping in the Great Outdoors

safe how to cook when cooking tips

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Cooking when camping is a topic that should be addressed before you go out into the wild. It’s a unique experience that you don’t get to experience every day.

This is mostly because you won’t be cooking with the exact utensils and procedures that you use at home. However, you’ll see that cooking at camp is more natural and traditional. In fact, some believe that such meals taste better than a homemade meal.

However, you can expect cooking when camping to be a bit more difficult and time-consuming than when you’re at home. This article has information that will make the whole process easy.    

7 Helpful Camp Cooking Tips

If you want to become a reliable master of the camping culinary arts, keep on reading. Lots of detailed points have been provided on how to cook when camping.

1. Start a Good Fire

As expected, you need a fire if you’re going to be cooking any meal at camp. For safety, fires are usually built in a dug-up hole at campsites.

However, if you haven’t got such a fire, feel free to start one on a flat surface within a safe distance from your tent and other belongings.  

Generally, make sure that the space around the fire doesn’t have anything that’s flammable.

2. Use Cooking Utensils

While cooking over an open-fire at camp, you need to make use of the right gear such as camping dinnerware sets. Because of the nature of campfires, you cannot use pots, pans, and other utensils with plastic fittings. Instead, whatever cooking utensils like mess kits you purchase for camp should be all-metal.

You must also purchase some protective gear – like leather gloves and heat-resistant boots – that will keep your body safe from the heat of the campfire.

3. Choose a Cooking Method

Based on what dish you want to prepare, you will have to use some method that’s different from the preparation of other dishes. Just make sure that you have all the necessary accessories packed before you set out on your trip.

For example, some people would like to utilize a Dutch oven based on their preferred cooking approach. For those who would be at camp for a long period, a cast-iron Dutch oven would be perfect. The aluminum types are usually for less serious camping trips.

4. Take a Picnic Table with You

When learning how to cook when camping, you also need to take note of where you would eat once your food is ready. Not all campgrounds will provide you with a table where you can eat at. Just in case you’re at one of these campgrounds, you need to be prepared.

You can purchase some portable and foldable picnic equipment that includes flat surfaces for eating; a card table could also work. Try to make separate areas for cooking and for eating. This is for the purpose of convenience. 

5. Cook Food That Doesn’t Make a Mess

Knowing what to cook over a campfire is also important. Some food types will splash hot oils as they are heated up on a fire.

Make sure your choice of food doesn’t contain too much fats and oils. Making use of a Dutch oven is also quite safer than cooking over an open fire. 

6. Preserve Your Food

As you go about your various activities during a camping trip, you need to ensure that your food is properly preserved.

The natural temperature of the camping area also tells on the preservation of both fresh and leftover meals. You must keep your food at the right temperature – in ice for instance – if you don’t want bacteria to start developing on it.

One way to accurately monitor the proper cooking temperature of your meat is through the use of a meat thermometer.

7. Keep the Safety Tips in Mind

When cooking at camp, you need to be cautious about your safety and the safety of others at the camp. One way to prevent dangerous accidents is by putting out the fire after cooking.

Keep a bucket of water close by to put out the flames; a bucket of sand would suffice too. You need to make sure that the fire is totally put out so as to avoid the risk of re-ignition. If you want to prevent tent condensation, you shouldn’t cook inside the tent.

Failing to properly secure your food can attract animals that are native to the campgrounds. To avoid such events, you have to make sure that you seal your food in well-secured coolers. These coolers should also be at a safe distance from your sleeping space. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you pack meat for camping?

It would be a shame, especially for meat lovers, if you fail to properly preserve your meat while at camp. Frozen meat should be kept at the bottom of the cooler along with ice blocks. Make sure that there are no spaces between items at the bottom of the cooler.

Where do you put a cooler when camping?

Coolers shouldn’t be left out beneath the hot sun. Store them in shaded areas that are also safe from wild animals.

How do I cook eggs for camping?

Cooking eggs at camp is quite easy. Unpack the previously packed eggs from the cooler and place the ones you want to cook inside boiling water. The eggs should be left in the sealed bag while boiling. After max 15 minutes, you can take it out of the water.


With all this information given on how to cook when camping, you should be just fine. It is always a nice experience to cook your own food while being surrounded by the fascinating features of nature. If you get it right, you will have a memorable experience.

But make sure you watch out for your safety and the safety of others when cooking at camp. Fires can be dangerous if they aren’t well monitored.

Ensure that you completely put out all fires after you’re done cooking. You should also store your food properly so that it doesn’t go bad or attract wild animals to your tent. 


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