Photo by manuellacoste via iStock
People that know me know that I love to cook. I love to cook at home, while camping…it doesn’t matter! In other words, I kind of consider myself a bit of a cooking connoisseur.
With that in mind, I decided to put together this list of the top ways to cook while overlanding. This list includes tools and devices that I either own or have thoroughly tested in the field, so I can speak directly to their value as part of an overlanding kitchen setup.
In each case, I’ll give you the specs and features as well as discuss what I like most about each item.
Let’s get to it!
Top Ways to Cook While Overlanding: Use the Schenk
When it comes to improving your cooking utility, I’m not sure there’s a better tool than the Schenk, shown above with the grill attachment on top of my FireFlower Original Fire Pit.
This simple, yet highly functional device allows you to cook on a grill, cook in a cast iron pot or pan, and even hang your kettle to brew tea or coffee – all in one awesome device!
The idea is simple: there’s an adjustable vertical rod that allows you to cook close to the fire (i.e., with the grill) or add accessories higher up (like your kettle). You can get a clamp that allows you to attach the Schenk to a fire pit or you can add the foot apparatus that enables the Schenk to stabilize on surfaces like sand.
However you use it, the Schenk will give you long-lasting durability given that it’s constructed of 306 food-grade stainless steel. It’ll stand up to water, fire, dirt…you name it!
And at 18 pounds, it has some heft to it that allows you to add a lot of food, but it isn’t so heavy that it’s prohibitive to use.
It’s easy to pack and carry, too, because the whole thing breaks down and packs away in a nice Wannigan Box. Just slide the box back in your vehicle when you’re done and off you go!
Perhaps best of all, the Schenk is easy to set up and take down. Set up takes just a few moments, and once it’s cooled off after cooking, the Schenk is equally as easy to take down and stow away.
Plus, you can cook over an open flame, which I absolutely love. Sure, it might be more work to cook over a campfire, but for me, the flavor you get from the smoke is worth the extra effort!
Trust me, if you’re a foodie and you spend a lot of time overlanding, the Schenk is definitely a tool you’ll want to cook while overlanding.
Add an Overland Racks Ontario Flatpack Firepit to the Mix
When you’re on an overlanding adventure, there will be times when you set up camp in the middle of nowhere and don’t have an established campground with a firepit to get your dinner going.
That’s where the Overland Racks Ontario Flatpack Firepit comes in…
As the name indicates, this firepit folds flat for easy transport and to save space – just what you want when you’re overlanding!
But don’t think that because it’s a space-saver that it doesn’t offer you all the room you need to get your dinner rocking and rolling. At 17 x 11.5 x 12.5 inches when it’s folded out, this firepit is just the right size for cooking up meals for you and your buddies. That’s why it’s one of the top ways to cook while overlanding!
Speaking of cooking, this firepit has an integrated grill and griddle so you can cook more than one kind of food at the same time. For me, that means cooking up some eggs and bacon each morning!
But cooking over a fire means the fire needs oxygen, and this firepit accommodates that with plenty of air holes that give the fire the fuel it needs to burn hot. And burn hot, it does! You’ll notice that the metal will droop a little bit as it heats up. However, this firepit returns to its original shape as it cools down (thanks in part to a lip that goes around the grill).
If you enjoy cooking and having a campfire when you settle into your campsite for the night, the Flatpack Firepit is certainly something I’d consider buying. It’s a functional, well-made product that is a worthy addition to your overlanding cooking routine!
Top Ways to Cook While Overlanding: Southwest Discada Cooking Plow Disks Make Cooking a Breeze
One of my favorite things about camping and overlanding is cooking up some good food while I’m out enjoying the beauty of the world around me.
And one of the best ways to do that is to equip myself with the very best in cooking implements…
If you don’t have a cooking plow disk, you need one. These things make cooking even more fun than usual because they are so easy to use. This is particularly true of Southwest Disk’s products because they come fully seasoned, fired, and cleaned so you can immediately use it upon delivery to your door.
Southwest Disk has a wide range of cooking plow disks, but I want to point out three of their models: the Rio Grande, the Santa Fe, and the Madrid.
The Rio Grande is an impressive 24-inch diameter disk that has a semi-flat bottom at about 10 inches across.
The disk rises to a height of about four inches to keep all that delicious food on the disk. And speaking of food, you get 27 inches of cooking space so you can cook up a feast for you and your travel buddies!
The Rio Grande is beautifully built – it has handles to give you a secure and safe way to maneuver the disk, and at just shy of ¼-inch thick and 25 pounds, this thing is rugged, sturdy, and ready for your overlanding adventures! Note that the Rio Grande does not include the burner shown in the image above.
Next up is the 22-inch Santa Fe.
As you can see above, this cooking disk is beautifully made with horseshoe handles that give you a sturdy means of moving the disk from one spot to the next.
The large concave plow design gives you all the space you need to cook breakfast, lunch, and dinner, too!
Like the Rio Grande, the Santa Fe is about ¼-inch thick, so it’s a durable cooking disk that can stand up to the rigors of your overlanding trips. Yet, at 22 pounds and 22-inches in diameter, this disk is a little smaller and lighter than the Rio Grande if you need to save some space.
Last but not least, we have the 18-inch Madrid discada. While this is the smallest of the three, the Madrid offers the same benefits of its larger brothers – it comes fully seasoned and ready to use and is equipped with beautiful, functional handles for ease of use.
And at just 18 pounds, this disk cooker is the ideal option for camping, overlanding, RVing, and other outdoor activities in which space is at a premium, but you don’t want to sacrifice your ability to cook with ease.
Regardless of which of these disk cookers speaks to you, you’ll get a product that is made in the U.S.A. by a veteran-owned company. So not only are you supporting U.S.A. workers with your purchase, but you’re also supporting someone that served their country proudly. As a veteran myself, it doesn’t get any better than that!
The Skottle Will Become One of Your Favorite Overlanding Accessories
The Tembo Tusk Skottle Grill is a must-have for overlanders that love to cook.
While there’s nothing quite like cooking over an open flame, in many locations, fires are either severely restricted or just outright banned. That’s why having a gas-powered grill on hand is a great idea.
This grill comes with a 10,000 BTU burner, so it has all the firepower you need to cook whatever you want.
And the process of cooking is so easy! The grill is pre-seasoned, so you can begin cooking right away, and because of the pre-seasoning, your food won’t stick.
The grill itself is just 18-inches, so it’s a small grill that can easily fit into your overlanding rig, but you still have plenty of space to cook up some great food.
The grill comes in two variations, one with a set of adjustable legs, the 18-inch Skottle grill, a 10,000 BTU burner, and a carry bag. You can opt for the adventure kit if you prefer, and you’ll get the adventure Skottle grill, a GSI Glacier Camp 10,000 BTU burner, and a BlueRidge Overland Gear carry bag.
There are all sorts of accessories you can add to this grill as well, like a leg-mounted table to give you prep space. It’s just a smartly-designed tool for cooking!
Get Ready to Cook While Overlanding
At the end of the day, cooking while overlanding can either be a laborious experience or one that adds to the fun of your trip. If you add one or more of these accessories to your overlanding cooking kit, I think you’ll find that cooking becomes something you look forward to – not something you dread.