Homemade Camping Cookware

Homemade Camping CookwareHomemade camping cookware can be crafted directed from your camping site. The benefit of using a hand-crafted heat source and DIY stove is that it is cheap and also can be used during emergency survival situations. The heat source fits directly under the stove, causing heat to rise and warm any tin plate or pan placed on top. For example, use your DIY stove to heat soup directly from the can.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Homemade Heat Source and Stove for Cooking

Things You’ll Need:
  • Large tin can and small tin can
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Tin snips
  • Gloves
Step 1
Empty a small tin can--such as a tuna fish can--of its contents. Wash and thoroughly dry. The tin can will serve as the heat source for your stove, which you will begin crafting in step 4.
Step 2
Insert a 2-inch-by-15-inch rolled piece of corrugated cardboard into the can so it is standing, not mashed inside. The suggested cardboard size is suitable for a 2-oz. can. Adjust measurement as necessary so the cardboard fits snugly inside the can. It should not overreach the rim.
Step 3
Pour melted paraffin wax into the can. Level off the wax with a stick or spoon so it stops at the edge of the can. Wait for the wax to harden. You can also use tinder made of greased cotton balls or char cloth, in which case you do not need to insert cardboard into the can. Grease the cotton balls with Vaseline.
Step 4
Puncture a succession of holes along the rim of a large tin can, which must be larger width-wise than the tin can you used to craft the heat source. When you flip the can later, the bottom will serve as the top of the stove.
Step 5
Cut an opening flap--4-inches long and 3-inches wide--that stretches from the can opening to the middle of the can wall. Use tin snips to cut the can. Wear gloves to protect your hands.
Step 6
Press the flap down so it folds over and into the can. Make sure the flap is pressed against the inside wall of the can. Flip the large tin can over. You are now ready to partner the stove with the heat source.
Step 7
Move the tin can--otherwise known as your heat source--to a flat, dry strip of ground. Ignite the cardboard or tinder inside the heat source.
Step 8
Position the stove over the heat source. Allow the ember and flames to heat the DIY stove for several minutes.
Step 9
Place a clean empty soup can or coffee can--this is NOT the can you used for the heat source--on top of the stove and use it to heat water, cook pasta, boil oatmeal or warm beans. Alternatively, wrap fish--for example, salmon--in aluminum foil and grill for five to 10 minutes for every inch starting from the thickest point and wrapping around diagonally. Turn the fish to cook each side. Season with salt and pepper if available. Fillet the fish to ensure the head and tail are not hanging over the stove.

Tips & Warnings

Boil water inside a standard store-bought water bottle. Fill the water bottle until it overflows with water. Place the cap on, making sure not to pour out any of the water in the process. Place the water bottle over an open flame and bring the water to a rapid boil, which will require several minutes of boiling time.
You can also use a flat rock to bake fish over an open camp fire.
Dispose of homemade camping cookware in the trash or reuse. Do not leave at your camp site.

Article Written By Charlie Gaston

Charlie Gaston has written numerous instructional articles on topics ranging from business to communications and estate planning. Gaston holds a bachelor's degree in international business and a master's degree in communications. She is fluent in Spanish and has extensive travel experience.

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