The best camping cookware for open fire cooking is without a shadow of a doubt cast iron.
Whether it’s in the form of a Dutch oven, skillet, or pan – cast iron cooks over raw flames better than any other material.
It offers even heat distribution to prevent undercooking or overcooking in certain areas allowing you to cook or bake food such as pizzas or bread. Something that isn’t really possible in other types of cookware.
However, cast iron requires maintenance and is heavy. If you don’t want the hassle of the upkeep, or can’t afford the weight – stainless steel or aluminum cookware is your best bet.
While it wont provide the same quality of cooking, if you just want to be able to cook up a hearty meal after a long day, you’ll have no worries.
In a hurry? Here’s our top 3 picks for the best camping cookware for an open fire.
Best camping cookware for open fire
If you only want one piece of cookware for your camping kit…this is it
The Lodge 8 qt Dutch oven is one of the most versatile cookware items you could purchase for an open fire.
A Dutch oven allows for you to cook anything from pizzas to chili to cakes to french fries to bread.
You can bake, sauté, deep fry, boil…whatever your imagination can conjure up basically!
The design of the Lodge is extremely versatile. The flanged lid can hold hot coals or be turned over and used as a griddle to cook eggs, pancakes, or bacon, while the legs allow more stability when placed over an open fire.
Being made from cast iron, the Lodge Dutch oven ensures more even cooking and easier temperature control when used over an open fire. Your bread will come out evenly browned and your stew evenly cooked.
The pot comes pre-seasoned with soy-based vegetable oil and supplied with a camping Dutch oven cookbook to get you started!
A super versatile cast iron pan set to cook virtually ANYTHING over an open fire
The Lodge cast iron combo cooker is a 2-piece set that can be used as a deep skillet, a fryer, and a Dutch oven, while the lid converts into a shallow skillet or griddle.
Similar to the Dutch oven you can sear, sauté, simmer, braise, bake, roast and fry with just this one pan set!
As with all cast iron cookware, it can be placed directly into a campfire, or over a campfire on a grill without damage, warping, or burn marks.
Being cast iron, nothing will stick to it, and clean up is quick and easy, especially if you clean it over your open fire.
Be warned, once you go down the road of buying Lodge products, you’ll find you want another set for home use too!
A lightweight but durable option available in a range of sizes
If cast iron cookware requires too much maintenance or you want something lighter, MSR’s Alpine range of cookware is perfect for open fire cooking. The Alpine range is one of the sturdiest ranges of cookware and can easily last a lifetime being used in or over open fires.
The Alpine Stowaway Pot comes in various sizes from 475ml to 1.6l. As the name suggests they are also made to be stowed away inside each other for easy transportation.
While not quite as versatile as cast iron is, you can definitely cook up a decent meal in the Stowaway. The lid can also be used as a makeshift frying pan too.
Things like bread and pizzas are largely off the menu, but you’ll be able to cook a mean pasta dish or chili in this lightweight pan.
A fantastic lightweight pot set for cooking multiple things at once
Another lightweight option is Acecamp’s aluminum cooking pot set. It comes with 3 pots of varying sizes, plus lids.
Each pot has a large handle to allow you to dangle the pots over an open fire, or you can place them directly into a fire or coals if you want to.
Similar to the MSR Alpine Stowaway, aluminum pots and pans aren’t as versatile when it comes to cooking as cast iron is. However, you can cook up some lovely dinners and breakfasts such as pasta dishes, chilis, and soups.
The nesting design of the pots allows for easy storage and transportation. Each pot fits inside the next bigger size, along with the lid for each size.
While these pots are rugged and great for outdoor use, we don’t recommend putting them in the dishwasher when you get home, as they are susceptible to corrosion!
Perfect to add a bit of control to cooking with an open fire. It provides a bit of space between your cookware and the heat, offering better prevention from burning and sticking.
A beautifully curated cookbook full of wonderful recipes for camping.