Designed to cook food over an open flame, a cast iron Dutch oven for camping can make your time outdoors much more enjoyable.
When camping, if you use a Dutch oven, you can do all of your cooking in one pot, which makes cleaning up and cooking easier! You will enjoy slow-simmering batches of stew, gumbo, chili, braising pot roasts, and much more.
In this blog post, we will take a look at the best Dutch ovens for camping and provide you with all the information you need to make an informed purchase.
Let’s get started!
Best Dutch Oven For Camping 2022
When it comes to car camping, few pieces of equipment are as important as a quality Dutch oven. With just a few simple ingredients, you can cook up an entire meal inside it, while you sit and relax!
However, with so many different models on the market, it can be difficult to determine which one is right for you.
Whether you’re a beginner camper or an experienced outdoorsman, keep reading for all the information you need to know about cooking with a Dutch oven.
This is a favorite cast iron Dutch oven for camping due to its budget price, sturdy construction, and excellent design. The optional use of the lid as a side skillet, when placed upside down, is super handy.
Our family used this particular Dutch oven quite often. It never fails to impress and is a good utilitarian choice.
This Dutch oven hangs beautifully from a camping tripod but can also be set right into a bed of coals due to its legs. The Overmont can also be purchased in a 4-quart size which is perfect for a couple or a small family.
This thick-walled beauty is top quality, weighs a whopping 19 pounds, and serves a big crowd. It’s great to have a Dutch Oven without legs for use on a camping grate but this also means it can be used in your home oven.
It is quite heavy but it also holds the heat very well so that the food stays hot on the table for a long time.
Bruntmore is a very reliable brand and this pot will last a lifetime with proper care, only improving with every use!
This top-quality rounded-bottom Dutch oven is made in Japan of premium cast iron. The pot comes with a bonus skillet as part of the package that nests inside under the lid for storage. The pot, lid, and skillet have a combined weight of 16.8 lbs.
Use this beautiful three-piece Cast Iron Oven set for meals that gather people together. Be sure to get the trivet and the lifter to complete the package!
Some classic campers believe Lodge is the only way to go for delicious food over the campfire. A tried and true well-trusted brand, Lodge provides a quality cast iron Dutch oven that is able to be used for camp stews and has a lid that doubles as a skillet.
Keep in mind this lid does not have flanged edges for baking in and under coals or a top handle so care needs to be taken when removing it. The flat bottom works perfectly on a camp grate or grill.
This lightweight GSI Dutch Oven for camping weighs just over 9 pounds, is 30% lighter than traditional Dutch Ovens, and is definitely ideal for those looking to lighten their load. Its nitrided surface treatment helps to prevent corrosion.
Many prefer this as a pot rather than a traditional Dutch oven over the campfire. This is because it withstands the intense heat from the campfire beautifully but doesn’t hold the heat as well as thicker and heavier cast iron.
This is a very high-quality classic Dutch oven and the shallow sides really lend themselves to baking just about anything! Cakes, bread, and cinnamon rolls turn out perfectly from this 6-quart option.
This particular model measures 12-inches in diameter by 3.75-inches deep and weighs 18 pounds.
Remember, also, that due to the shallow design of this particular Dutch Oven it is not the best choice for stews, roasts, or whole chickens. The flanged lid that holds hot coals inverts for use as a griddle.
So yes, this is not technically a Dutch oven but how beautiful is this pot? Potjies are traditionally round, cast iron, three-legged (tripod) pots in South Africa, pronounced /poiki/. It is similar in appearance to a cauldron and is usually black.
A potjie pot is a wonderful vessel to cook rich stews in over hot coals. Common ingredients in a potjie include beans, meat, vegetables, and spices.
To cook a potjie, the stew ingredients are placed in the pot, layered, and then left to simmer for several hours, but NEVER stirred.
Cooked properly, a potjie should result in a thick and hearty stew that is packed full of flavor.
Are you a solo camper or do you travel with one other person? This is the Dutch oven for you! There is no need to buy a giant cast iron piece that holds more food than you need for two servings.
The lid of the Dutch oven can be flipped for use as a small griddle. Snow Peak also sells another small cast iron piece called the Micro Capsule for your consideration.
Pair these mini Dutch ovens with the Micro Cast Iron Lifter for safe handling.
What To Consider Before Buying A Dutch Oven For Camping
Design, size, and style are all very important!
➡️ Traditional Dutch ovens have a flat bottom with a domed basting lid. These are made for stove tops and campfire grates rather than for sitting on coals. For Dutch ovens with legs, the heat source comes from the top of the pot (when topped with coals) as well as the bottom and is great for baking bread.
➡️ Not all Dutch ovens have wire handles! So, if you are interested in tripod cooking over an open fire, this will be an essential feature to look for.
➡️ Choose a size that suits your needs. You can even fry foods in a Dutch oven and cooking outdoors is the best time to do this! You will need a deep Dutch oven for deep frying, larger is better.
Dutch Ovens For Camping: FAQs
Dutch ovens are the original crockpots! Similar to a crockpot, you can throw just about anything in a dutch oven and it will come out tasting moist and delicious. They can be used to cook over a campfire or coals and come in a variety of sizes, so you can choose one that is the right size for your needs.
Is a Dutch Oven good for camping?
Yes, it is an essential item when car camping! A Dutch oven can be used to cook just about anything over a campfire, from hearty stews and soups to fresh stir-fry dishes or even a whole chicken! They are also great for reheating leftovers.
Best of all, Dutch ovens are relatively easy to use, even for inexperienced campers. With a little practice and property safety equipment, anyone can learn to cook delicious meals in a Dutch oven.
Whether you’re new to camping or an experienced outdoorsman, a Dutch oven is an essential piece of equipment for any trip into the wilderness.
What’s the difference between a Dutch Oven and a Camp Oven?
A Dutch oven is a heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid that is perfect for slow cooking over an open fire. Because they are made of thick cast iron, Dutch ovens retain heat well, making them ideal for braising, stewing, and baking.
The legs of a Dutch oven allow air circulation underneath when it is sitting in coals. The burly lid allows the cook to pile hot coals on top for more even temps for baking. The raised flange around the edge of the lid keeps coals from sliding off.
A portable camp oven is a small, self-contained oven that typically runs on propane. It is used for outdoor cooking, such as car camping, RV-ing or picnicking. Camp ovens are available in a variety of sizes and styles.
Portable propane camp ovens are a convenient way to cook while camping or picnicking, as they do not require an electrical hookup. However, they must be adequately ventilated to avoid the build-up of dangerous gases.
What is the best size Dutch oven to buy for camping?
• When choosing a Dutch oven for camping, the most important factor to consider is the number of people you’ll be cooking for. A small family or group can get by with a 4-quart Dutch oven, but if you’re feeding a larger crowd, you’ll need at least a 6-quart model.
• Another consideration is what type of meals you’ll be preparing. Stews and other one-pot dishes are ideal for Dutch oven cooking, but if you’re hoping to roast a whole chicken, you’ll need a larger model.
• Ultimately, the best size Dutch oven for camping depends on your specific needs. However, err on the side of caution and choose a larger model if you’re unsure – it’s always easier to cook a smaller portion than to try and stretch a meal to feed more people than anticipated.
How to Care for An Outdoor Dutch Oven
Outdoor Dutch Ovens are exposed to the elements regularly and need to be properly cared for in order to prevent rust and wear. Here are four tips for caring for your outdoor Dutch oven:
👍 Avoid rust by keeping the pot clean and dry. After each use, wash the pot with mild soap and water and then dry it completely. If you live in a humid climate, it’s also a good idea to apply a thin layer of oil to the pot after drying it.
👍 Season the pot regularly. This will help to create a non-stick surface and prevent rust. To season the pot, rub it with cooking oil and then bake it in a 350 degree oven for 1-2 hours. Allow the pot to cool completely before using it or storing it.
👍 When not in use, store the pot in a dry place. If possible, store it inside during winter months to prevent rust caused by moisture or cold temperatures.
👍 Inspect the pot regularly for signs of rust or wear. If you do find a small amount of rust, simply oil the pan and wipe it down with a paper towel until no residue of rust remains. If it is very rusty refer to this guide.
With proper care, your outdoor Dutch oven will last for many years of cooking enjoyment.
Best Accessories For Cooking With A Dutch Oven While Camping
It’s fun to collect accessories that suit your style of campfire cooking. Everyone has their own preference and comfort level with cooking over an open flame. The below items are what I consider must-haves for any serious campfire chef!
Would you like to feel like you are cooking in the Old West while you stir your pot of Campfire Chili or roast your chicken? Get this classic camping tripod to keep your Dutch Oven level and also be able to control its proximity to the fire using the chain to adjust.
You can raise the Dutch oven high above the campfire to reduce the cooking temperature and lower it closer to the campfire to increase the cooking temperature. Plus it just plain looks COOL!
This tool protects your hands from heat as a lid or bail lifter. It can also be used as a trivet for your lid, or help flip it to use your lid as an extra cooking surface. I have two so I can use them for different applications at the same time.
Heat-resistant gloves are a MUST HAVE when dealing with hot cast iron over a campfire. Trust me on this. You will realize and you go to reach for the lid, even with the above 4-in-1 tool, that the fire is HOT! It is a definite safety item to purchase for your campfire cooking.
This is perhaps my favorite cleaning item for my kitchen at home AND when I am camping. It will completely change how you feel about cleaning up heavy cast iron pans at the campsite. All you need is hot water, soap, and this scrubber. It doesn’t fall apart or get caked with grease like a sponge or synthetic scrubber.
Conclusion: Best Dutch Oven For Camping 2022
So, what’s the verdict? Are you convinced that a Dutch oven is a must-have for your next camping trip? I hope so! If you’re still not sure, or if you want to learn more about our top five picks, be sure to bookmark this post to come back and check out the individual product reviews.
Dutch ovens are a must-have for any outdoor cooking enthusiast. Whether you’re planning to do some campfire cooking or just want an extra pot to take on your next picnic, a good Dutch oven is worth the investment.
What’s your favorite recipe to cook in a Dutch oven?
Don’t forget to check out and download our free camping food checklist – it’s packed with all the tasty essentials you’ll need for a successful trip. Happy camping!