Cooking kit made specially for campers can be a bit utilitarian – and it’s not always great quality.
So, we’re always looking out for kitchen equipment that’s well-designed, multi-use and easy to pack. Here’s some of the best.
Latest update: December 2019
Instant Pot for electric cooking
If you have a campervan or caravan or room in the car plus electric hook-up, the Instant Pot is a great way to cook your meals quickly and economically. From stews in 15 minutes to perfect rice and even cakes and yoghurt.
Basically, it’s a clever electric pressure cooker that also slow cooks and steams. The 3-litre (3 quart) Mini is our choice for camping and is also big enough for a decent meal for two or three at home. Well, enough soup for five!
If you have a larger campervan, motorhome or kitchen (!), the usual 6-litre Instant Pot is probably worth the extra £20 or so. They’re quite big, but not heavy.
Keep an eye out for our special feature on camp cooking with an Instant Pot…coming soon. Meanwhile, here’s tonight’s Iranian stew with dried lime and dill. Yum.
A great idea for camping, and so simple. It’s a portable washing up bowl with two carrying handles and a plug/strainer. You could use it for preparing veg and salads too, or even as a handy washing sink for wild camping. There are three colours to choose from. We’ve got a feature on washing up gear too.
Sharp knives are safe knives, as all the best chefs know. However, a sharp knife in the bottom of a camping bag is an accident waiting to hurt. These Joseph+Joseph knives come with a protective sheath and have a built-in sharpening wheel at one end. The blades are silicon-coated stainless steel.
These Tefal Ingenio pans and frying pans are indeed ingenious. The handles detach and reattach at the click of a button, there are lids with folding handles for when you're cooking and plastic lids for using the pans as bowls and storage. Non-stick aluminium and stainless steel options, sets or single items. The stainless version is probably too expensive just for camping, but there's a five-piece set for under £50, which is cheaper than a lot of camping sets.
We love our stainless steel bowls for all our home baking and mixing. They’re even more useful when camping. These Von Shef bowls (five of them) are great because they have lids, plus interchangeable centre bits for grating, slicing etc. Mix in them, measure in them, serve in them. Perfect and indestructible.
The Cadac Safari Chef has long been our favourite gas camping stove. Neat and portable, it comes with lots of cooking options (pizza stone, griddle etc). There are high and low pressure versions to run on canisters or on bottles of gas. If you see one with holes in the legs, snap it up. This older model doesn't have piezo ignition but is more sturdy.
If you're serious about camp cooking and are going to be camping somewhere warm, nothing beats the Dometic compressor fridges. Whatever the temperature outside, they stay at a stable coldness inside. The CFX or CDF range are the best (and expensive). See our fridge guides too.
If you're a fan of really good coffee, you'll love this Wacaco Nanopresso. We were sent one to try and thought we'd never use it...but, it's now our main coffee-maker at home and when camping. Perfect espresso (add water/milk for Americano etc) in a few pumps of the pressurised plunger. Small and large versions and an adaptor if you MUST use capsules. Not cheap, though!
Keep all the rest of these lovely camp kitchen items easy to get at in this Andes camping kitchen storer bag. Enough room for a set of pans, your crockery and more, with outside pockets for cutlery, cloths, bottle openers etc. One section removes and is (notionally) insulated.
And if you don't want to pack all that? Just take some of our favourite emergency food. Just add hot water and wait 10 minutes. Real food with real taste too. The best price we've found is on Ebay, by the way. Around £7 for a hearty one-person or decent two-person meal. More tasty cheats in our special feature on easy camping meals.