Methods of Cooking and Reheating Food
What to know

How to Reheat Food while Camping

Is it necessary to know how to reheat food while camping? Yes, you should, especially if you love such activity. Camping is an outdoor activity ideal for family and friends. It is a good way to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and the daily routine. It is the best time to spend your day living the traditional way without the convenience of modern living. If you have once joined a scouting program, most likely you have some ideas.

While you are away from your kitchen, there’s no other way but to cook your food without using the stove. From the preparation of food to cooking, you will do it the old way. The drawback is that it requires a lot of time and patience than doing it in the kitchen. Thus, it’s essential to know how to make camping cooking less daunting. Yes, you can prepare the food ahead, but it is more exciting to do everything at the campsite.

You may also like: The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a Microwave Oven that Best Fits Your Needs

What if there are leftover foods during camping? How will you reheat the foods the next day? It is not a big deal as long as you have the necessary cooking supplies available. Having some ideas to reheat the leftovers is also a big help.

This post will give you useful ideas while in the woods.

Cooking Supplies

Regardless of your cooking plan during your camping, make sure to prepare all the necessary cooking supplies.

  • Lighter fluid
  • Box of matches
  • Portable grate
  • Microwave for Camping
  • Lightweight pan and pot
  • Aluminum foil
  • Tongs and spatula

Methods of Cooking and Reheating Food

Cooking at the campsite is fun. But sometimes you cook a lot of food and leave more. You may also prepare the food a day before and reheat it at the campsite. There are several methods to cook or reheat different foods.

Aluminum foil

The most sought cooking supplies for camping is aluminum foil. You can use it for cooking or reheating food. You can place it directly on the grill. How to use it?

  • Wrap the food and toss it into the grill.
  • It is best to use aluminum foil to cook or reheat meats or vegetables.
  • Fold the edges to ensure that the food is sealed tightly.
  • Make sure that the aluminum foil is thick.
  • But allow some room for the food to expand.
  • Make sure to check to avoid burning the food.

Portable grill

Another way to reheat food is through a portable grill. The good thing about using it is the ease of setting up. It is very convenient to bring and use this collapsible grill. Use the grill in any way you reheat the food. Place the pans, pots, kettles, or the food on top of the grill. Likewise, it is easier to clean the grill after using it.

Microwave for Camping

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The classic way of cooking or reheating food during camping is through a pothook. If you had joined scouting, most likely you know how to use a pothook.

  • The first thing to do is to build a structure using strong sticks around the campfire.
  • Hang the pot on a pothook so that it won’t sit directly on the fire.
  • If you want to reheat the food fast, hang down the pot closer to the fire.

It is tricky to build a pothook. Make sure that it is strong and can support the pot with food. Otherwise, it will tip over. We recommend treading carefully to build a pothook.

Dutch oven

The Dutch oven is an ideal cooking tool in the wild.

  • You can reheat the food by putting coals on top and beneath. This way, the heat will circulate throughout the oven.
  • If you will use the Dutch oven for cooking, apply a little amount of oil for easy clean up after cooking.
  • You should also wrap the outer surface of the oven with foil.

Tin can

Using tin can to cook or reheat food is a traditional way. If you have a big tin can, put the food items in layers.

  • The meat must be at the bottom and the easy-to-cook ingredients and seasonings on top.
  • Cover with foil and wait until done.
  • You can also use large coffee cans to heat up dishes or cook your meals.
  • Don’t forget to cover the grill holders with aluminum foil.

Buddy burner

While camping, it is essential to be creative to improvise cooking materials. You can improvise a buddy burner by using paraffin, wax, corrugated cardboard, and a small can.

  • Cut strips out of the cardboard.
  • Form a coil. Place it at the bottom of the can.
  • Cover the cardboard with melted paraffin wax.
  • Wait for the wax to harden and use it as a source of heat.
  • Place four standing nails to the ground surrounding the buddy burner.
  • Place the pan on top if you will reheat food.

The good thing about buddy burner is that it serves two purposes. You can use it as an emergency fuel and for cooking. For your safety, be careful in handling the burner. Never attempt to touch the liquid wax.

Vagabond stove

When going out camping be ready to improvise a stove. You need not bring your gas stove because it will add to your loads. The best way is to be creative. You can make a vagabond stove using a large can. How to do it?

  • Remove the lid of the can
  • From the side of the can, make a small square
  • Cut the two sides, make sure that the square is attached
  • Make two air holes that serve as ventilation
  • Place the makeshift stove on top of a buddy burner to cook food.

Charcoal Grill

Another way to reheat food during camping is by using a charcoal grill. The good thing about using charcoal is that it offers a distinctive flavor. Because of the smoke, a unique flavor is added to the food you are cooking or reheating. But make sure to use charcoal enough to reheat the food to avoid burning or overcooking.

On a stick

You may wonder how to reheat food on a stick. It’s not only hotdogging that you can heat up on sticks. If you have corn on the cob, fried potatoes, shish kabobs, and biscuits, you can use a stick to heat them up. This option will save from using other cooking utensils.

Grilling basket

A grilling basket is a useful cooking buddy out on the campsite. It is ideal to use this grill basket for meats like beef. You can also grill vegetables in the basket. The best thing about this grill is that there’s no need to flip the food individually. All you have to do is flip the entire grill. Make sure to lock the basket to ensure the food would not fall when you flip the grill.

How to Reheat Food while Camping
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Common materials used for cooking

An ideal camping adventure must be using traditional ways of preparing and cooking food. Otherwise, it won’t be exciting if you will bring everything in your kitchen for convenience. With this, you must learn the basics of creating fire and cooking or reheating food in a conventional way.


Using wood fire for cooking is a classic way to cook food during camping. But it requires to be extra careful in managing the fire. You can use twigs, bark, dry grass and leaves to create fire. Long sticks and bigger woods are also useful to maintain the fire. But make sure the flame is enough to cook or reheat the food.


Charcoal is ideal for grilling purposes. But you can also use the heat from the coal to cook or reheat food. The good thing about using charcoal is that you can control the amount according to your needs. No smoke is produced when using charcoal and ensures the food is well done.

Matches are essential during outdoor activities like camping. Make sure they are kept dry. Cover the heads with wax and scrape when needed.


Knowing how to reheat food while camping is necessary. The information discussed above will serve a lot not only during camping but also in other outdoor activities. It will improve your abilities to be creative and resourceful. Since camping is an adventure, you must expect that not all the circumstances are favorable to you. With this, being resourceful can save you from untoward situations.

What if you forgot to bring a pot or pan? It can be a big issue especially if you will cook or reheat your food. What if the only resources you have are cans or tins? Worry no more because these small things will save your day.

As long as you understand all the information and guides listed above, you can make your makeshift stove and cooking utensils. You can cook or reheat food using an empty can. It is also important to know the basics of creating a traditional stove.

If you find this post and the step-by-step guide helpful, please leave a comment or share it.

My Favorite Camping Gear on Amazon


  1. How to Cook While Camping? We Have All the Answers!”, The Smart Survivalist
  2. How to Keep Food Warm During Hiking: You Don’t Have to Eat it Cold!”, Hiking Mastery
  3. How To Reheat Food While Camping (12 Quick And Easy Ideas)”, Small Car Camp
  4. Camp Cooking Tips”, Love The Outdoors

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