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CURRIN -Camp Cooking Skills: The 6 Things You Need to Become the Ultimate Camp Chef

You’ve finally set up camp after a long hike (or a long drive to get to your campsite). You know you’re not going to get your wife’s cooking tonight (we’re not saying that’s a good or bad thing…), but does that mean you have to eat poorly while camping? No!

You’ve finally set up camp after a long hike (or a long drive to get to your campsite). You know you’re not going to get your wife’s cooking tonight (we’re not saying that’s a good or bad thing…), but does that mean you have to eat poorly while camping? No!

Let’s be real. One of the best parts of a camping trip (or really any day, right?) is the food. Camp cooking is a big deal, and your camp kitchen deserves to be the best it can be -- even in the wilderness.

In order to have the ultimate camp kitchen, and in order to impress your friends with your camp cooking, you’ll need a few things first. This list can help you get started:

1. First, you’ll need the basics: a stove. The only way to bring the quality of home-cooked meals to your campsite is to have a solid stove that you won’t mind carrying around. A pocket stove is your best friend when it comes to camp cooking. Lightweight and easy to set up, it’ll give you the kitchen feel in the middle of the wilderness. This one is our favorite and screws right onto a​r liking, and is ready to use instantly. Or, if you have some more room to spare, consider bringing a propane camping stove, like this two-burner stove from Stansport.

2. Next, you’ll need utensils: roasters, sporks, and more. These are all relatively compact items you can easily store for your camping trips without taking up too much space. But check out this ReadyMan skewer you can keep in your pocket or wallet! All you have to do is find a stick, and you’re ready to cook hotdogs, marshmallows, or… whatever you happen to catch that day.

3. Ahh, plates. A killer meal deserves a killer presentation. No, don’t bring your wife’s fancy china with you on your camping trip, but do make sure you’re eating in style. The Wildo Camp-a-Box includes everything you could possibly need, from a cup to a plate to a cutting board. The best part? It all fits together and barely takes up any space (so you have more room for the important stuff… like food).

4. Next comes a cooking tripod; boil your water without burning your hands. Simply put together the tripod (our go-to tripod happens to be nice and compact), hang your pot below, and place over your fire. Boom! Boiled water. You can also use a cooking tripod to heat up meals and other food items while your stove is being used… Because we’re all about efficiency here.

5. Don’t forget the recipes. That’s right, you don’t have to stick to canned beans and dehydrated meals just to save space. Check out our favorite Backcountry Cookbook for some recipes to impress your friends without overpacking. Not only are these recipes delicious (we know because we’ve tried them), but they’re also environmentally conscious and wallet conscious, so you can eat well without worrying about the environment or your bank account.

6. Last… Food! This is where you get to be creative. What are your go-to camp snacks, meals, and drinks? Join the conversation and get some inspiration from other camp chefs.

If you like these items, check out the gear our subscribers received in Mission 24 or subscribe for more gear to help you thrive in camping and survival situations.