For most campers, their portable camp kitchen is a source of great pride.
Ideally, a camp kitchen will fit into one storage container, allowing for ease of access and storage, as well as a child and tampering deterrent when sealed with a lockable lid. If you're putting your kitchen together and need some guidance, here are some pro tips on what to consider.
Choosing your grill will depend upon the type of camping you are doing. For backpackers, acquiring a simple MSR pocket rocket will be sufficient and it will last for decades. For the weekend warriors, the Camp Chef Mountain Man Over-The-Fire Grill and Griddle is a piece of equipment that will serve you and your friends a four-course meal with its three-tier design. For those who live in areas where a campfire is not typically an option, you may want to look at a charcoal or propane grill. They typically take up a large section of your available packing room, but are sure to always fire up. Look for a sturdy design and made with materials that will withstand the elements. Consider the Weber Smokey Joe as a great charcoal option and the Camp Chef Big Gas III Grill as a propane option.
For the ideal kitchen setup there are a few essentials to consider. A thick-bottomed cast iron skillet is a key item to have. Oil and season the skillet at home so that it is primed and ready to go. A dutch oven is handy for many meals, but cooking with them is a true science. If you can get your grasp on time and temps, you can make anything from tamale pie to pineapple upside down cake to a delicious batch of chili. For your breakfast needs, adding a griddle is a versatile option for cookware. Due to their shape, they stow easily and are quick for clean up.
Utensils and Tableware
To avoid the mystery of the lost utensils, pick up a collection of sporks for your dining set. The Light My Fire spork has a spoon on one end and a fork on the other with a serrated edge that doubles as a knife. It is made with a heat-resistant Eastman Tritan material that is durable and won't scratch nonstick cookware. For tableware, consider how much room you have left in your kitchen box. There are great durable options for collapsible bowls and cups, but metal plates can come in handy for those with children.
There are plenty of items that you can add to your cooking regalia that may not be necessary but are fun to have, especially for those with kids. A popcorn popper, pie iron or an ice cream ball are great to have in your kitchen kit. For those early mornings when the fresh mountain air isn't quite waking you up, being able to have a reliable coffee pot on hand will help start your day. Opt for a french press, they offer easier clean up and don't leave grit in your teeth the way cowboy coffee does.