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If you’re going camping or just spending the day out in nature, you may decide to cook some food over an open fire. When some people think about campfire cooking, foods cooked on sticks or skewers come to mind. Or even Marshmallows.
However, there are some simple tools you can use to cook meals on a campfire which can produce some pretty amazing dishes. But what is the best way to cook on a campfire if you are a camping beginner?. Well, below we have 5 awesome easy ways to cook dinner, lunch and even breakfast over a campfire suitable to the most novice campers.
Quick Links To Info On This Page
- 1 How To Cook On A Campfire With 5 Easy Methods
- 2 2. Best Heavy Duty Over Fire Grill For Camping
- 3 3. Cast Iron Skillet For Campfire Cooking
- 4 4. Cheap Disposable Method Of Campfire Cooking – Foil Packets
- 5 5. The Simplest Method Of Cooking While Camping
How To Cook On A Campfire With 5 Easy Methods
1. Campfire Cooking With A Dutch Oven
Whats campfire cooking without a Dutch Oven. This piece of camping cooking equipment is one of the longest standing pieces of equipment still used today as a means to cook while camping under the stars. For over 100 years people have been cooking with a Dutch Oven for a very good reason. They are built to last!.
Unfortunately there is only one company that still makes Dutch Ovens in The USA, but it’s without a doubt the very best in my opinion. You can use a Dutch oven to make everything from cakes to casseroles. The Dutch oven can be placed on a grill rack, hung from a tripod, or placed directly in the fire.
But by Using Briquettes or hot coals underneath and above is a great way to cook with a Dutch Oven. This is because it creates an even temperature to cook food without burning the bottom or under cooking one side for example.
If the Dutch oven has an inverted flat lid (which makes it perfect for outside cooking) coals can be placed on the lid to produce an oven-like effect on the food inside. Some models have a reversible lid which can be used as a direct Skillet. Which is another great method of campfire cooking. Unfortunately, the best Dutch ovens are cast iron which means they’re heavy, so they’re not good for backpackers. But the versatility and extremely long life span of a dutch oven makes them a must have piece of campfire cooking equipment.
2. Best Heavy Duty Over Fire Grill For Camping
A grill rack can be used to cook over a fire. This rack is a fold-able unit that resembles the grill on a standard barbecue grill. The hot coals will help you cook meats and vegetables to perfection.
Grill racks also leave the characteristic grill marks that many people come to expect from grilled food. These grill marks add character and a new level of taste to foods like steak, chicken and fish. Since the grill is fold-able and relatively lightweight it’s easy to carry with you. As camping is a portable hobby or activity, cutting back on unnecessary items is a must in order to camp effectively. So with a space save like a portable grill rack, you can spare extra room for a few cold beverages as well.
A high quality grill rack should be heavy duty, like the TexSports over fire grill. If it looks flimsy it probably is. If you want to successfully cook over a camp fire, the cooking apparatus must be able to handle intense heat and direct contact with fire. So don’t go cheap here, it’s simply not worth it. Ideally you want a grill rack which can handle the weight of a cast iron dutch oven as well. This way you can cook a greater variety of foods like stews, steaks, soups, sausages, kebabs, whole chicken etc.
3. Cast Iron Skillet For Campfire Cooking
A cast iron skillet is a great way to cook food over an open fire. The flames will not burn the skillet and because cast iron skillets have a non-stick surface, it makes it perfect for cooking over high heat.
You can use the cast iron skillet over the flame or place it on a grill rack. While the skillet is not as heavy as the Dutch oven, it’s still a little cumbersome to carry on long hiking trips.
Much like the dutch oven, a cast iron skillet should last you a very long time, if not an entire lifespan. However, it has to be one of superior quality and preferably made in the USA. Lodge are the best choice if you are looking for an all American made cast iron skillet to take on your next camping trip. The Lodge Cast Iron Skillet even comes pre-seasoned which many other brands are not. Huge plus in my eyes.
4. Cheap Disposable Method Of Campfire Cooking – Foil Packets
If you don’t want to spend money on various cooking tools, you can use an inexpensive item like aluminum foil. With foil packets, you only need to place the food in the packet, fold it over, and place the packet on the coals. This is ideal for one off campers that don’t need a long lasting piece of camp cookware.
Because of the intense heat, the food will cook quickly, so it’s important to keep an eye on it. You can also use the foil packets in a Dutch oven or on a grill rack. This is one of the most lightweight choices since all you need is a few sheets of aluminum foil.
The disadvantages of using foil packets are that you are limited to the types of foods you can cook over direct fire. Foods such as stews, soups and sauces may prove troublesome. However, you can easily wrap a fish or steak in foil and throw it on the hot coals. Be sure to add some sort of liquid to the food to be cooked so that the foil has less chance of sticking to the food.
5. The Simplest Method Of Cooking While Camping
A Pie Iron Does The Job
A pie iron is an outdoor cooking tool that is perfect for making grilled sandwiches. However, you can also make a variety of pressed items in the iron. Since the pie iron closes down around the food, it is the perfect tool for camp-made pies, eggs, bacon, baked potato and even steak.
A pie iron is lightweight and relatively small, so you can carry it with you if you’re not traveling far. They are relatively inexpensive and can be great snack makers.
But for the more serious camper, a Double Cast Iron Pie Iron is the ticket. It can hold more food and being cast iron will create a more even cooking experience. Make sure that you use a pie iron with a long enough handle that you won’t be sticking your arm in the fire to retrieve dinner!. A wooden handle on a steel rod is a great way to prevent burning of the hands.
These are just a few ways to cook on a campfire. You can try one or all of them to find the method that you enjoy the most. Some are more practical than others, while some are more open to creating amazing campfire dishes. If camping is a serious hobby of yours, or if you want long lasting camping cookware, always go with cast iron. It’s proven to stand the test of time and there is simply nothing better than cooking in a Cast Iron Dutch Oven in my opinion.