Disasters-How To Cook After One

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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 disasters 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 lookout 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 after all disasters. 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:

Butane Stoves:

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. Plus most canners would weigh too much to be placed on them anyway. Yes, I have my Master Preserver Canning Certificate from the state of Utah. Also, you can’t keep the heat at a steady temperature.

They use butane fuel like Camp Chef Butane 1 Burner Stove with Camping Case and: 12 Butane Fuel GasOne Canisters for Portable Camping Stoves


Very inexpensive


Once you run out of fuel you can no longer cook with it.

Read More of My Articles  Prepared: What Does That Mean?

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 firepit 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.


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.


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.

Volcano Stove:

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.


Inexpensive to purchase. It can use three fuel sources, propane, charcoal, and wood.


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.

Read More of My Articles  Why We Need To Be Prepared Before The Storm

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: Camp Chef Griddle


Inexpensive to purchase, it has an oven and a stovetop.


They only use propane.



Most everyone has one. Just keep lots of propane stored. Lots, yes lots.


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 them outside on the barbecue. They may never look the same. Picture BLACK pans, sometimes. Cast iron pans work well outside.

Kelly Kettle:

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


You can boil water, cook soup and make hot chocolate using only twigs, leaves, or pinecones. AWESOME!


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


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.


It’s a little more expensive, but not enough to keep me from purchasing another one.

Sun Oven:

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 the sunshine, you will love one. Plus, save on utility bills! All American Sun Oven- The Ultimate Solar Appliance


Uses zero fuel, only the sun. For the price, it’s a bargain. You never need fuel to use it. If your pan can fit inside the Sun Oven you can bake it.


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 the sunshine.

Final Word

Thanks again for being prepared for unexpected disasters. You can sleep at night knowing your family will be safe, well fed, and more comfortable.

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  1. Do you know how long the butane canisters last? Hopefully indefinitely! I’d like to stock up – I only have three.

    1. Hi Kathie, I have some that are at least 10 years old. It will last indefinitely if the valve is okay. Here’s the deal if the valve is rusty or broken the butane cannot be used. I have at least 12 cans in my garage on a shelf. Linda

  2. We recently installed a propane cook stove. We used to have an electric stove . I also have a charcoal grill / smoker, a medium and a large dutch oven , a wood stove (used mainly for heat,but we can cook on it) and the camp chef stove/oven combo. I have 200 gallons of propane in a large tank, and six of the 5 gallon tanks. We have the adapters for the larger tanks, and I’m not sure how many of the 1 pound bottles of propane. I buy charcoal every year when Home Depot puts it on sale ( used to be 2 bags for about $7). We love to grill , so we use that all year long. We have also taught the 16 and 14 year old grand kids how to light the grill and how to start a fire in the wood stove. My next big purchase will be a Sun Oven.While I have only made tea using the sun, I would love to learn to use a Sun Oven. I almost forgot, I have several of the little stoves that uses multiple fuels. Thank you for the info on the other cooking sources. I think everyone should know how to start a wood fire and charcoal fire.

    1. Hi Judy, you are all set up with that new propane cook stove! I love it. I love having several different ways to cook in case of an emergency. The Sun Ovens are great because if we run out of propane or charcoal if we have sunshine we can boil water, and cook anything that we can cook in our conventional ovens. You are rocking Judy! Linda

  3. I was watching a video on YouTube and in the comments, several people explained that one needs to be careful with the small butane stoves. One person recommended not to buy one with a pan larger than 7 inches or that extended or hung over the butane canister as the canister can get heated and explode.

    Otherwise, they’re okay and the Asian import stores (Inexpensive Chinese made products) sell the butane canisters cheaper than most places on any given day. One person said the Coleman stove was often used by Chef’s on television cooking shows.

    Another thing is that there are a lot of YouTube videos demonstrating how to refill the disposable Coleman propane canisters. It is considered illegal to transport refilled bottles/tanks/canisters. So, I’d be careful, maybe only refill just before using it. There are refillable tanks you can buy and avoid any legal problems or a fine. In order to survive, you can refill the disposable ones, but it’s better, safer and legal to use the refillable and you get a kit with everything you need.
    You can always buy extra propane hoses and adapters for grills and stoves to use the different size propane canisters. Lots of choices an flexibility with propane.

    1. Hi Frank, when I taught classes at food storage stores, most of them provided me with a butane stove to do demonstrations. I was always grateful when they had a full kitchen but they were all different. It makes sense about the larger pans. I view a butane stove as a temporary cooking device. Let’s hope more people try them out before they HAVE to use them after a disaster. I try to remind people to practice with all their preps. Fingers crossed that they do! Great comment, Linda

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