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4 of the Best Outdoor Cooking Tips

Need outdoor cooking tips? Here are four you can't go wrong with.

The primary week of summer has shined its glorious gleam upon us and with it derives a great atmosphere to start cooking outdoors.

Here are four of the best outdoor cooking tips for the outdoor enthusiast while fishing, hunting or camping.

Tip #1: The Reflector Oven

A use of a reflector oven involves the cook to create a shelf out of heavy duty foil in order to hold the food while heat is directed from the fire pit towards the food itself. This is a great way to cook fish caught in the wild with indirect heating. For the outdoor enthusiast that isn't so interested in creating one, you do have the option of buying a reflector oven at most stores.

To create the Reflector oven you'll need to begin by collecting and cutting two Y-shaped branches measuring around 20 inches and two 22 inch branches. Place the branches in the ground vertically and next to your fire pit.

Now wrap one of the 22 inch branches with heavy duty foil and place it in the forks of the Y-shaped branches. Next, unroll the foil at a 45 degree angle away from your fire and down towards the ground. Anchor the unraveled foil with the other 22 inch branch while unrolling the additional foil towards the fire. Tear any of the remaining foil off.

The last part is to create the sides of the Reflector oven. Start by wrapping one of the Y-sticks with foil. Unroll the foil around the back of the oven while tearing off any remaining foil. Repeat this step for the other side and finish by nipping the pieces of foil together.

Tip #2: The Submerged Dutch Oven

While the duration required to cook a meal using this method is quite long, it is also one of the best. Start by digging a hole in an area best suited for your cooking needs. The hole should be about twice as deep and 1 foot broader than your Dutch oven. Once you have the pit dug, toss in a liner of heavy rocks in order to conduct and generate more heat towards the food.

Start a fire within the hole, and burn down the wood until it's more coals than flames.

Shovel out enough coals to place the Dutch oven in the hole. Replace the coals around the top and edges of the Dutch oven with a small layer of dirt placed over the coals. Enjoy the meal about 6-8 hours later (time required depends on the recipe used for the meal).

Check out more detailed instructions in this video post.

Tip #3: The Traditional Fire Pit

One of the most traditional and delicious ways of cooking a meal outdoors would be the "one-pot meal" seen throughout movies and other cultural references.

After creating a traditional fire pit you can either cradle the Dutch oven over a high flame or place 6-8 coals underneath the Dutch oven and over the top of the oven's lid. Enjoy the meal about 6-8 hours later (time required depends on the recipe used).

Tip #4: Direct Grilling on the Coals

One of my favorite methods to use when grilling steak or any other thinly sliced piece of meat is to grill openly on the coals. This technique is simple and works quite well. Start by coating both sides of the desired cut of meat with salt and end by using a piece of heavy duty foil to wrap the cut.

Now you just place the foil pack on the coals and cook it evenly on both sides (time required for cooking will depend on the type of meat, the selected cut and the thickness of the meat). The foil wrap will help conduct the heat from the scorching coals while locking in the flavor of the meat.

If you want to attempt a bolder approach, try Alton Brown's method of grilling directly on coals.

There are a ton of methods to use when cooking outdoors and using an open campfire. Have you ever cooked outdoors using one of these methods or tried something original? If so, we would love to hear your comments and tips below.

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4 of the Best Outdoor Cooking Tips