Today it’s all about how to cook after disasters hit. And disasters will hit our neighborhood or community at least once in our lifetime. Sometimes they will hit more than once. If we are prepared we will not fear, I promise. Here’s the deal, you do not have to spend a lot of money on emergency cooking devices. I’m going to talk about all the ones I have used and recommend. Keep in mind some of my sponsors have given them to me to do a review. Let’s be real here, I will only write about the ones I love. The others I have refused to try because I saw how flimsy they were at the store. Some I have shipped back to the company and could not do a review for them. I’m here to teach the world what does work. Period. I’m always on the look out for new products, but the old standbys still work the best.
I have tried almost every emergency stove that’s available on the market. I use them often so my skills are current and I’m prepared right now to cook outside. I used to camp, but now that my girls have grown up and started their own families I have given up camping. I used to love to go camping with a trailer, and who doesn’t love the smell of bacon and eggs cooking outside in the fresh crisp air in the morning? I know I love it! So, now I cook outside in my yard and try to share the fruits of my labors, so to speak, with my neighbors. So, let’s get started with the items I use and highly recommend.
Cooking After Disasters:
I have used these to teach classes at stores, and I have one in my home that I have used many times. This is also the stove I gave all four of my daughters for Christmas one year. If you have some pans, you can boil water, cook some soup, fry eggs, and many more foods. You can’t do any canning like water bath canning or pressure canning on one of these. It would not be safe. Yes, I have my Master Preserver Canning Certificate from the state of Utah.
They use butane fuel like Camp Chef Butane 1 Burner Stove with Camping Case and: 12 Butane Fuel GasOne Canisters for Portable Camping Stoves
Pros: very inexpensive
Cons: Once you run out of fuel you can no longer cook with it.
Lodge Dutch Oven:
If you have a 6-quart Dutch oven (the larger ones are too heavy for me to carry), you can boil water and cook just about every food you can fit in those babies with the lid on the top. You will need firewood, charcoal, or lump charcoal to cook with one of these. I am going to build a small fire-pit which I hope to show you next week. Please buy the non-starter fluid charcoal product to use because if you store those briquettes in an airtight container they will last indefinitely. Please make sure you buy this style Dutch Oven because you can stack cook with these lids. Plus, the charcoal doesn’t slide off the lid. Lodge L12CO3 Cast Iron Camp Dutch Oven, 6- quart and don’t forget to buy charcoal… I cook with my Dutch ovens on rocks in the front yard. I’m sure my HOA hates it. I’ll probably get a letter.
Pros: inexpensive if you get them on sale, well actually they are a bargain since they last a lifetime if you keep them seasoned and dry.
Cons: You must maintain them by seasoning them, which to me isn’t that big a deal. You need to store enough charcoal to use one of these. Once the charcoal or wood, lump charcoal is gone, you may have to look for alternative wood sources and hope you have enough to keep the temperature where you need them to properly cook the food. Here’s my PRINTABLE Dutch oven chart: Dutch Oven Chart I got permission from Lodge to incorporate a printable for you.
Pros: What I like about the Volcano stove is the fact that you can use three fuels to start with: wood, charcoal, and propane. Just make sure before an unforeseen emergency you have the correct adaptors for the propane. Some Volcano stoves come with small adaptors for the tiny propane tanks and sometimes you have to purchase the large tank adaptors. Be sure and check the Volcano stove you purchased to see what kind of adaptor it has. I gave three of my daughters one of these. They are awesome. Watch for a sale at Costco. When they have them they are sold at a very good price. Volcano Grills 3-Fuel Portable Camping Stove and a griddle (Volcano sent me one of these): Volcano Grills Reversible Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Griddle/Skillet The griddle works great for pancakes, grilled cheese sandwiches, etc. You can flip it over and cook meats. It’s awesome! Thanks Volcano for letting me try one! I love it.
Cons: The baking tent makes my bread smell like smoke. That’s the only con I have.
Camp Chef Stove/Oven Combo:
Pros: I like this one because I can make pancakes on the griddle (purchased separately) and bake casserole and bread on the racks inside the oven. I do have to remove one rack. That’s easy to do. I can bake two loaves that use one-pound pans for each one. Please make sure you have two adaptors, one for the small propane tanks and one for the larger propane tanks. Here’s the one I purchased and I love it: Volcano Grills Reversible Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Griddle/Skillet
Cons: They only use propane
Pros: Most everyone has one. Just keep lots of propane stored. Lots, yes lots.
Cons: They waste fuel, in other words, you will go through too much fuel just to boil water, or to cook a heavy duty pan with a casserole inside. I wouldn’t take my nice pans I use inside and use outside on the barbecue. They may never look the same. Picture BLACK pans, sometimes. Cast iron pans work well outside.
This is the one I was given by Kelly Kettle: Kelly Kettle Ultimate Stainless Steel Large Base Camp Kit
Here’s the deal on the Kelly Stove, I had been wanting one for about two years. I was so excited when the company contacted me to do a review on one. It was truly a cartwheel moment. I love, love, love it! You can see the post on how to use it here: Kelly Kettle Demonstration by Food Storage Moms
Pros: you can boil water, cook soup and make hot chocolate using only twigs, leaves, or pinecones. AWESOME!
Cons: I have no cons for it as long as you have pinecones stored in airtight containers or leaves and twigs in abundance around your home.
Camp Chef Two-Burner Stove:
Camp Chef was gracious enough to send me this beautiful stove to teach classes for emergency preparedness. It is awesome, and I thank them for it. Explorer 2-Burner Stove
Pros: It has two burners, you can cook two different pans of food and use a griddle on it as well. It requires propane (which lasts indefinitely-my favorite fuel), and you can cook for your entire street if you had to make some meals to sustain life.
Cons: It’s a little more expensive, but not enough to keep me from purchasing another one.
I am grateful that Paul Munsen sent me a Sun Oven 5 years ago so I could do a review. I thank him from the bottom of my heart. I promote these like crazy because IF you have sunshine, you will love one. Plus, save on utility bills! All American Sun Oven- The Ultimate Solar Appliance
Pros: Uses zero fuel, only the sun. For the price, it’s a bargain. You never need fuel to use it. If your food can fit inside the Sun Oven you can bake it.
Cons: If you have limited sunshine I would not recommend one of these. Here’s the deal, people use these all over the world. They are a blessing to everyone everywhere if they have sunshine.
Thanks again for being prepared for the unexpected. You can sleep at night knowing your family will be safe, well fed and more comfortable.