When it comes to camping, you need the right gear to make sure you have a great time.
One of the most important pieces of gear you will need is a good set of pans. With the right pans, you can cook all of your favourite meals while you are out in the wilderness.
Pans come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, from skillets that are great for camp side pancakes or juicy flatiron steaks that go well in a baguette – there are tons of options for campers that cook!
At Wood To Water, we know what it means to keep your energy levels up, so we sell a great range of camping pans. From cast iron cookware, deep pots and frying pans for your eggs and bacon – our pans and utensils section is well worth a look!
Let’s take a look at some of the most practical camping pans.
Thus far, you might have spent most of your time camping, eating out of tins or waiting for your foil-wrapped jacket potato to be ready. A lot of people think that camping is limiting for your menu, but it doesn’t have to be if you have the right camping pans, then you can make pretty much anything that you would make at home.
First up, we have camping skillets. It offers a larger surface area to cook on. While it looks and acts similarly to a frying pan, it is deeper.
The depth makes it ideal for cooking any number of dishes, including a huge range of one-pot meals. Skillets also tend to be made of metal in their entirety which means you don’t have to worry about using them on a campfire.
This fan-favourite size has been redesigned with chefs in mind. The elevated, comfortable main handle and assist handle on the Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet give you great control as you manoeuvre around your kitchen. The generous pour spouts are made for pan sauces and gravies and the spatula-friendly sloped sidewalls make stirring a breeze. Seasoned to bring out rich flavours, this skillet is bound to become a favourite for years to come.
Camping frying pans are obviously designed to be used while camping which is important because normal frying pans tend to have plastic components, which would melt on the campfire and contaminate the food.
Frying pans and skillets are somewhat similar, although frying pans are shallower.
Highlander Frying Pan, 7.25″/18cm
A Dutch oven is an invaluable instrument when it comes to campfire cooking. It is essentially a large cast metal pot with a lid. It seals the heat inside and evenly distributes it to cook the contents through without burning it.
Dutch ovens can be used to stew, fry, roast and bake, which makes them incredibly versatile!
A Great Alternative to Cast Iron dutch ovens this lighter weight dutch oven enabling all your normal cooking ideas with out having to carry a heavy cast iron dutch oven.
Camping casserole dishes are somewhat similar to a Dutch oven, but they tend to be longer, shallower and don’t always come with a lid.
They also aren’t as versatile as a Dutch oven, having limited uses – predominantly casseroles.
Camping cookware sets are great for beginners.
They provide you with a basic set of pots and pans to get you started. You can then add to your set as needed. In addition, the sets often fit together to make them more easily transportable.
As a complement to our camping stoves we have produced a set that is sold without a burner, designed to suit gas stoves. The saucepans and frypans have milled bases so they do not slip on the gas stove. This set is ideal for boats, caravans or holiday cabins. The saucepans are the same as in the 25 Large series but the frypan is a different version and will not fit on Trangia stove sets. Frypan has a 1.4 mm base, which makes it very sturdy.
There are several material options to choose from, but the most common are aluminium, stainless steel, cast iron and titanium. This is because these metals tend to be more durable and longer-lasting.
Cast iron cookware is one of the more traditional options, and it works great, although it can be a little heavy.
Aluminium heats up and cools down quickly, which is advantageous when cooking outdoors. It also holds heat effectively, making the cooking process easier. However, aluminium can also rust if not looked after properly. Stainless steel is next; it also heats up and cools down quickly.
However, it is less affected by rust, although if it is, it is easy to sort out. Lastly, titanium, this is the least popular of the three, perhaps because it tends to be slightly more expensive, but it doesn’t rust at all.
The size of the pots and pans are entirely dictated by your needs. You need to consider how far you will have to carry your equipment; if you have to travel long distances with it, then it makes sense to take smaller items.
However, if you have to cook for multiple people, then taking bigger pans makes more sense.
The last consideration to make is the menu. This will obviously need planning in advance, and once you know what you are cooking, you should have a better idea of what cookware you will need. Camping pans come in a variety of sizes which means that you should be able to find what you are looking for.
Depending on where you are camping and how long you are camping for, you will need to have put some thought into how you are going to store your camping pans. If you are trying to travel light, most people tend to cook and eat out of the same canteen, which is then attached to their camping backpack.
Otherwise, the storage options depend on you, both inside your home while you aren’t using them, and when camping too, the pots and pans are hardy and durable, so the storage solutions don’t matter too much. Of course, you should always clean them before first use, especially if they have been packed away for a while.
You have a few different options when it comes to choosing your heat source while camping. Firstly, you could make a campfire if it is within your capabilities to do so. Of course, this limits the number of things you have to carry with you, but if it has rained recently, it can be incredibly difficult to get a campfire going.
There are also camping stoves or portable barbecues to consider; while this does mean extra weight to carry, you can often get smaller, lightweight versions. If you can’t build your own campfire, then obviously, one of these will be a better option.
One of the trickier parts of cooking while camping is working out how to wash your pots afterwards. This will depend on where you camp. If you are camping at a campsite, then you should have a water source on-site that you can use.
If not, you will either have to take enough water with you or find your own water source.
Apart from boiling the water to heat it up, washing your pots while camping isn’t really any different to washing your pots at home.
Start by adding oil to the pan. While that’s heating up, dice the onion and cut the meat into chunks. Brown the meat first, then add the onion. Next, add the seasoning, passata and BBQ sauce. Simmer for a couple of minutes before adding the beans. Use the back of the spoon to create wells in the mixture, and crack the eggs into the wells. Cover with foil and cook for a further 10 minutes.
Make the sauce by adding all but the sausages into a saucepan, bring to the boil until the sauce is glossy and smooth. Set aside to cool. Cook the sausages through; once they begin to brown, you can brush them with the sauce until they are cooked through. Serve with more sauce.
Slice the halloumi, brush with a bit of oil on each side. Fry the halloumi on both sides until golden brown. Toast the bun and construct the burger. Spread hummus and salsa on the bun, add some lettuce and a bit of tomato, finish off with the halloumi and top with the top bun.
Mix together the cheese and spring onion. Spread a tablespoon of mango chutney over four slices of the bread, then distribute the cheese mixture evenly between the slices. Top with the other four slices of bread. Melt the knob of butter in a pan, then add the sandwiches. Fry for a couple of minutes on each side until nice and toasted. Serve with more mango chutney.
Grate the potato and place in a clean tea towel. Wring out all excess water. Add the grated potato to a bowl, mix in the flour, one egg, half the spring onion and half cheese. Season well. Add some oil to the skillet. Once hot, add the hashbrown mixture, fry until golden – 5 – 10 minutes. Create a well in the middle, and add the remaining egg either allow to cook as is or beat before adding for scrambled eggs. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese and the chili flakes. Top with foil – or the lid. Cook until the egg is cooked through.
Cooking while camping doesn’t have to be the challenge that everyone thinks that it is. It simply requires some planning on your part. Think about the menu. What ingredients, equipment, and tools do you need? If you are prepared, there is no reason why you can create as good a meal as you do at home.
This comes down to the individual, there are a number of different options out there, and in all honesty, it depends on what you are making. The most important thing to remember is that the pan needs to be made entirely of metal to avoid melting or otherwise contaminating the food.
No. Normal pans are made of a mixture of metal, plastic and other materials that shouldn’t be used on campfires or while camping in general because they can melt, warp and contaminate the food. From a practical standpoint, they also aren’t as portable.
Both are popular options, and both have their own benefits. One of the distinguishing features, however, is that aluminium is more prone to rust than stainless steel.
Firstly, you can try simply washing your pots with warm water and detergent. If that doesn’t work, you can add a cup of vinegar to the water. If that still doesn’t work, then create a paste out with water and baking soda, apply it to the pot, scrub, then rinse clean. Remember when scrubbing to use gentle circular motions.