How to Make a Box Oven for Camping in 5 Steps

making a camping box oven outdoors

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While you’re out camping, you might need to make use of an oven as you cook so you must know how to make a box oven for camping. Box ovens are very easy to make and they wouldn’t cost you much money.

Depending on how much oven-based cooking you would like to do, you can always make as many box ovens as you like. The building process doesn’t take much of your time either and almost anyone can conveniently make one.

When you don’t have the conventional Dutch oven for an outdoor camping event, the box oven would be a great alternative for you.

How to Build Your Own Box Oven

To successfully implement the box oven, you need to gather up things such as a box, knife, stapler, stones, aluminum foil, cans, and a fire. This is similar to our article on making your own camping bucket light.

You don’t need to go far before you can get these materials – they are mostly household items. We have provided a few detailed steps on making your own box oven for camping.

Read on to learn more.

1. Find a Box

To make a “box” oven, you need a “box.” When getting the box, you need to neatly cut away the bottom.

When you don’t cut the lower region properly, it would give you an ugly oven. Then the next step is to cut a rectangular shape into the side of the box.

You also need to take the adequate supply of oxygen to the heated coal into consideration. To do this, you need to put holes on the upper side of the box.

2. Wrap It with Aluminum Foil

You might have been wondering how the box wouldn’t catch fire if you put some burning coal beneath it.

To keep your box oven from going up in flames, you need to wrap up the entire box with some aluminum foil. To stop the aluminum foil from coming off at some point, you need to firmly wrap it around with some tape or staple pins.

After you’ve wrapped both the inside and outside of the box, you could rub the inner parts with vegetable oil – take note that this is optional. You can choose not to use vegetable oil.

3. Fill Some Cans with Stones

Get some empty cans and fill them up with some weighty materials – you can make use of small stones. The filled cans will hold up the grill in the box oven.

4. Put Up the Cans

The rock-filled cans are to be put upright at the corners. This will create a platform for you to place the grill on. Put the grill in the box oven and allow it to rest on the four cans.

5. Light Up the Coal

The final step is to put heat in the oven. Get coal for the fire and spread the coal within the box oven. Now you can light up the coal and grill your food over the oven’s heat. You can also prepare your camping breakfast with fresh eggs if you like.

The rectangle that you cut into the box’s side earlier will serve as the door. Make sure the door is tightly shut whenever you’re cooking with the oven.

With these steps, you should be able to make a box over for camping easily.

How to Use a Cardboard Box Oven

You also need to learn how to properly use the oven. The first step in using your box oven is locating a suitable platform to place it on.

You need to find a level surface that doesn’t have inflammable stuff – like dry grass – on it. Prepare the surface by spreading some aluminum foil on it – with the dull side facing down. Carefully arrange the rock-filled cans so that they can hold up the grill for your oven.

If you don’t want the heat from the charcoal to get excessive, you can vary the heat’s intensity by taking out some coal from the fire. Note that one coal briquette can give off a heat of up to 35 degrees.

When you’ve chosen the amount of coal, put them out on the aluminum-covered floor and place the rock-filled cans in position. The cans will serve as elevated support for the oven’s grill. You can tilt up one end of it with a small stone for ventilation.

Extra Tips

You can also add a window that you can peek through to see how the cooking in the tent is going. Cut a hole through the box oven to make a window and make sure that you wrap some aluminum foil around it. Close the face of the hole externally using an oven bag that’s held in place with some tape.

If you want to accurately monitor the temperature, you should install an oven thermometer so the sensitive end is pointing into the box while the thermometer’s dial is outside.

Make use of the two parts of your box and also tuck the lower box inwardly if you’re looking for a stronger and more heat resistant oven.

Final Thoughts

Now you should be able to conveniently make a camping box oven for yourself. Box ovens are cheap to make and they serve as great substitutes for Dutch ovens.

Remember to properly cover the entire box with aluminum foil so as to prevent the box from going up in flames. Also, choose a ground area that doesn’t have inflammable stuff like dry grass when setting up the oven.

Have fun as you build yourself a box oven.


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