Essential items for a camp cooking kit

Nothing tastes as good as camp cooking done well
Nothing tastes as good as camp cooking done well

Camp cooking is something of a lost art. Heck, cooking has become a lost art in many households.

But if you are one of the few. If you won’t settle for a cup of noodles on the trail or want more than just cliff bars for breakfast, you’ll need some gear.

What goes in your camp cooking kit can be a difficult decision, especially if you’re a backpacker. After all, everything has to fit in your bag and be easy to carry. Even if you’re car camping, space is limited.


Here is a list of five essential items that we think every camp cooking kit should include.


Salt and seasoning

People always say that food tastes better when you’re outdoors, and they’re not entirely wrong. Food does taste better when you’re desperately hungry and have had a long, grueling day. But if you’ve ever had a bite of oatmeal in the morning without salt or seasoning, you might disagree.


camp cooking kit salt


Good food always tastes better when you’re outdoors. But bland, nasty food still tastes bland and nasty, you just have more desire to eat it.

Next time you go camping, take salt and a seasoning kit. Salt is an essential component in every form of cooking. Salads, meat, pasta, porridge, baking, dessert, even chocolate are all made better by the right amount of salt.


camp cooking kit salt seasoning


This is one of the smallest and simplest ways to ensure that you are always eating like royalty on the road.


A green scrub pad

Once you’ve cooked, eaten and made a general mess of things, it’s important to clean up afterward. After all, you probably only have one of everything. You’ll be cooking another meal in that pot tonight. You might not want last night’s grime to be the first flavor in tonight’s dinner.

So clean up as soon as you’re done eating. Camping near to rivers and lakes can make washing a lot easier. Soaking really dirty pans and dishes is a great way to loosen up the leftover mess.


camp cooking kit sponge


But what you really need is a tough scrubber. The green pads that you can buy at any old grocery store are just the thing. They are made out of metal or plastic meshes that get the job done. These things are tougher than steel wool. Just don’t use them on non-stick pans or else you’ll be kissing your teflon coating goodbye.


A spork

More dishes means more cleaning. The fewer things you use, the less you have to wash once the fun part is over. A spork isn’t just great because it serves multiple purposes when you eat. It also keeps your mess to just one utensil.


camp cooking kit spork


There are a number of brands and designs out there, so we’ll let you choose your favorite style of spork. Just make sure you don’t lose it. Once you do all your eating with one utensil, you won’t want to misplace it. In fact, you’d better buy two, that way you have a backup.


Aluminum foil

Have you ever seen those cooking shows where a chef has to make an entire meal using only aluminum foil? No? Well, it’s a thing, and it’s really funny to watch. But the crazy part is that you can actually do it. You can make cooking vessels, utensils, plates, cutlery all out of foil.


camp cooking kit aluminum foil


And while you hopefully bought a backup spork and don’t need to make a tin foil fork when you lose your first one, foil can be pretty handy. It’s a great way to package foods like sandwiches. Cooking in foil is also easy and lots of fun. You can roast veggies, meats, even boil water in this stuff.


A flexible cutting board

Any good meal is going to involve some cutting. Dicing veggies on a rock or stump can be pretty nasty, not to mention difficult. A good cutting board is essential when you’re camping, but can be awkward to pack.


camp cooking kit cutting board


Bring a flexible cutting board with you on your next trip instead. They can roll up or fit in anywhere a sheet of paper would. They are durable, lightweight and even make it easy to pour your diced veggies into your delicious stew.


Next time you’re in the woods, don’t settle for cliff bars for dinner. Make a delicious meal. Your body will thank you.

If you want some ideas for great foods to cook over your campfire, check this article out.


If you have any great camp cooking hacks or tools you simply can’t go without, share them with us on our Outdoor Revival Facebook page

If you have a good story to tell or blog let us know about it on our FB page, we’re also happy for article or review submissions, we’d love to hear from you.

We live in a beautiful world, get out there and enjoy it.

Outdoor Revival – Reconnecting us all with the Outdoors


ian-carroll is one of the authors writing for Outdoor Revival