Survivalist Cooking

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The importance of survivalist cooking cannot be underestimated. Nourishment is extremely important in our daily life: it gives us energy and pleasure. While in a survival situation, cooking can get not as simple as in your kitchen at home. To fuel the body, a survivalist must learn how and what exactly to cook: this knowledge will sustain the body and mind for a long time. Among the essential ingredients of a survival diet, there is meat, soup, hardtack, milk, pemmican, rice or any other staple food, and more. To delve into the details of survival kitchen, read on.

Being prepared equals being able to handle anything a survival situation might require. In this article, we’ll lead you through the universal survival cooking methods, camping hacks, and everything you need to know about kitchen survival gear indispensable for maintaining wellness and energy.

When the circumstances demand, a genuine prepper has the tools to provide their family and themselves with healthy food. A true prepper has sufficient knowledge and doesn’t need tons of canned food, modern kitchen appliances, and hi-tech equipment to cook everyday meals or something outstanding. If maintenance of the shelf life of canned products becomes a thorn in your side, our cooking tips are the pill.

Suppose there is an emergency causing a long-term power cut. Make sure you learn about these notable primitive cooking techniques that you might use on a mountain hike, in the field, at camping, and whenever you want to practice your survivalist’s skills.

It’s vital to understand that creative and positive thinking can turn off-grid disaster situations into a pleasant and relaxing pastime: all you need is great company, pieces around you, and our helping hand. Cooking together might become one of the greatest ways to close your followers’ ranks and restore morale. It turns the process into something more than simply cooking food and stuffing.

Let’s dive into the details and explore the space of wilderness and opportunities a knowledgeable person might find outdoors.

15 Outstanding Survival Cooking Options and DIY Gear

You need to know about primitive cooking techniques because cooking in the woods is different from cooking in a modern kitchen stuffed with advanced equipment, ceramic pans, stainless steel items, and internet cooking resources streaming chefs’ videos that inspire you. Once an off-grid situation occurs, you have limited opportunities to provide a meal to your family and yourself. For example, in the woods, a person doesn’t have many components and exclusive ingredients to prepare a restaurant-standard dish, but one shouldn’t lose heart. Fast, simple survival cooking can save you time and provide delicious meals.

Let’s begin with the easiest DIY open fire cooking methods and learn the ways how people can turn their emergency food storage ingredients and anything they have around into a gustable meal.

DIY Spit

We are sure you have watched adventure and western films, where characters prepare food using a spit. That’s exactly what this paragraph is about. This survival cooking method has been popular ever since its invention. You can use it to roast the hunting takes. Remember kids using marshmallow sticks over a camp-fire? The cooking technique is very similar. It won’t be convenient to hold the sticks with one hand, as your piece of meat, fish, or other food can be heavy enough. We recommend building supports that would hold your spit. Ensure you use sticks that are fire-resistant. Otherwise, your meal might fall into the coals and get streaked with dirt. Consider watching this video for more detailed information.

Rough and Ready Grill

If you being kids, have ever used an old wire section or a metal frame with iron bars over an open fire, you know what a rough and ready grill is. You won’t need much time, information and experience to prepare this primitive cooking gear. Besides, managing coals is less complicated than cooking on an open fire. Therefore, follow this easy guide and cook your food on the grill:

  • Lit a fire: use sticks, matches, firestones, or anything you have in your bug out bag to provide burning flames.
  • Wait until you have live coals.
  • Attach your DIY grill section over the grill pit and let it heat. This step is important for maintaining a healthy approach. One needs to disinfect the iron bars before using them as cooking items.

Once your field kitchen is ready, cooking foods on the grill will be easy and safe.

Rough and Ready Roasting Pan

Creating a DIY griddle to roast fish, chicken, eggs, and other food is more than easy. This primitive cooking technique will save you time and won’t demand much information to create the device. Substitute a roasting pan with any flat surface that conveys heat: ceramic fragments, rocks, metal sections. Make sure the surface is flat and spacious enough for your purposes. Heat the DIY pan to disinfect it before you roast the food on it. It would help if you managed an open fire to practice this survival cooking method. Ensure you do it the right way not to damage yourself and the surrounding area. Watch this video guide for more information.

DIY Oven Made of Stones

Build your exclusive DIY stone oven and put it to test immediately. This survival cooking method doesn’t demand much time and enjoys popularity among a lot of people. You don’t even have to prepare a fire pit. The only inherent thing to do is to find the appropriate materials to compose a three-walled stone well. Leave the front side open and cover the construction with another stone to keep the heat inside the oven.

To start cooking food, you should surround your stone construction with sticks and fire-wood and lit it. The flames will heat the stones and provide a high temperature inside the stove. Cook your meals using pots or pans and change the heat by adding more wood fuel. You can even try it as an open-air pizza oven. If you want to learn more information, this video tutorial might be helpful.

Earth Stove

Earth stoves or pit ovens link us back to ancient times. These survival cooking methods are similar to baking techniques. Soil and stones substitute the stove, while coals become your fuel. Follow this guide to construct your earth stove:

  1. Start with digging a pit of appropriate size. The length and width of the DIY fire pit rely on the volume of your product.
  2. Lit a fire using some sticks, dry leaves, and logs that will produce nice coals. You need to support the fire for two-three hours prior to preparing the meal.
  3. Find a stone lid and cover the construction with it. We recommend using a flat stone.
  4. Prepare some greens, grass, or vegetables to provide enough moisture during the baking process.
  5. Arrange your products on the grass and cover them with another layer of natural moisturizers.
  6. Cover the whole construction and the foods with soil and wail till it’s cooked. In most cases, it will take up to several hours, depending on the product type.

With experience, you’ll learn the approximate time that each product requires. However, try using this technique for overall practice now.

Keg Stove

One of the greatest solutions to construct a wood stove is using a barrel. If you have appropriate tools at home, ensure you try to assemble your version of a barrel stove. You can also invest some money and buy a constructor stove kit to save time and avoid engineering mistakes. Use it as a heater to boil water and prepare meat, fish, vegetables, porridge, and whatever meals you choose in the open or where gas and electric power is unavailable. Regardless of how you choose to build a barrel cooker, be inspired to click this tutorial video to learn more about constructing your wood-burning stove.

DIY Can Stove

A DIY stove is an alternative to a rocket cooker. It’s trendy among campers and scouts. One can easily construct the model by means of a steel coffee can and a knife. After dismissing plastic and paper parts, use the knife to make three or four cuts that resemble battlements. Put some thin sticks inside to heat up the camp stove and cover it with a flat metal surface on the top. Boil, dry, and fry — this tool is capable of many things. Also, see how one can make a DIY rocket can cooker.

Food Drying Methods in Survivalist Cooking

Releasing moisture helps prolong the life shelf of many products. There are various ways of drying fruit, vegetable, and even meat products. Manufacturers offer a lot of food dehydrators used at home. However, all modern technologies and appliances demand electricity. Once you get cut from the hi-tech kitchen, the most effective cooking methods are provided by Mother Nature. Sun dehydration is safe, easy, and 100 percent free.

Another great option to get rid of unnecessary moisture is drying your fruit and vegetables by the fire. You can learn more information about how to prepare fruit snacks and dehydrate foods here and check out this useful video guide.

Emergency Kitchen Supplies for Cooking

Once we have digested the information about DIY survival cooking devices, we can proceed to manufacturers’ offers and learn the best alternatives of the year. Some of these options are rather compact and can become part of your bug out bag set or package. Others demand more area but can be easily stored in a prepper’s car among the necessary equipment.

Choose the preferred variant of preparing the items and pack your prepper’s case for emergencies.

Jetboil Wilderness Cooker

Flash Personal Cooking System

Jetboil Stove uses propane to convert energy into heat to boil water. Therefore this solution is great for short-period emergencies. The cooker is indispensable at camping and hikes, as it can contain up to 1,000 ml of water and heat it at lightning speed. Jetboil stove is light-weight and mobile, which is a great advantage during stalking and hikes.


BioLite Wood-Burning Camp Cooker

Biolite Campstove

BioLite Wood-Burning Camp Stove is a fantastic device combining three features in one item. Use it as a mini cooker, a heater, adjust it as a grill cooker, or a charger for your gadgets, converting wood sticks into energy. The size and weight of the model allow one to carry it in the backpack.


Sun Oven

Sun Oven

Sun Oven stoves are true magic, as they don’t require wood, dry leaves, matches, coals, gas, and other types of fuel. These golden pots need only sun and sunrays to produce power and turn it into heat. Invest once and reap the best of what this survival device can: from boiling to baking. The Sun Oven equipment replaces a robust kitchen and brings refunds. These cookers are more expensive, but they are way more helpful and can immediately reduce gas and power bills.

Esbit Ultralight Pocket Cooker

Pocket Stove

Esbit Ultralight Pocket Stove works like a charm. Store this weightless oven in your pocket and use this metal box whenever you need to start a fire. This survival stove easily turns into a stand where you can set a fuel tablet to provide heat.


Camp Deep Dutch Oven

Camp Dutch A deep dutch oven is the all-time survivalist’s equipment and an absolute must-have for the prepper’s car checklist. The iron solid construction with convenient supportive elements is the most reliable and capacious kitchen design ever that will serve you for years to come. To start a fire, use some dry leaves, wood, and long-running logs and enjoy your dutch cooking pot preparing the best fish, meat, ragout dishes, and soups for the whole family. This kitchen utensil is not recommended for stalking and walking situations due to its weight. However, should you have a survival trailer, keep this oven as a must.

Solo Stove Lite

Solo Stove

The portable Solo Stove Lite is easy to use and effortless to carry. It has a simple stainless steel design and serves a designated purpose: conducting heat. All you need is some sticks and a spark. With a Solo Stove Light, you can easily boil some water in a cooking pot and enjoy a hot meal almost on the go.


Traditional Wood Cooker

Traditional Wood Stove

“Traditional” does not deceive you: this gear is dependable but not mobile. A reliable traditional stove allows you to prepare outstanding dishes regardless of electricity and gas absence. Also, this wood heat cooker is a robust tool to warm up the house from the inside. Alternatively, one can use survival tent stoves to accommodate the demands. A traditional stove requires great investment, but this decision will provide both kitchen and heating facilities. It is vital for emergency locations with no central heating.

Creative Thinking for a Successful Survival

Creativity, inspiration, and improvisation can turn nothing into something spectacular. This includes cooking and other survival skills that you are empowered to master immediately. Consider every chance to practice your skills and create something beautiful, delicious, and useful. Ask your family members and friends to join you. Spend time outdoors, go hiking and fishing, and develop creative thinking. It will bring you much pleasure and reinforce your skills.

The Bottom Line

We hope the afore-mentioned information was useful for you. Our time brings a lot of hardships, and probably the future conveys even more worries. Cooking and storing food and related products is inherent to survive during possible tough times. Make essential preparation and learn the best prepper’s recipes to improve the chances.


What is the best way to prepare food in a survival situation?

There are various cooking techniques, and you can choose the one you fancy most. Consider DIY solutions we describe in the article. Ensure you try the stone oven, which helps a person cook even pizza.

Is cooking a survival skill?

Sure. Cooking is essential to survive. Restaurants and stores might get closed, and you won’t be able to buy ready-to-eat food. Sharpen your skills and cook using the products you find in the woods and procure yourself.

How can I cook food without electricity and fire?

The absence of electricity is not a problem to learn cooking. There are many options you can try. However, the absence of fire is pretty limiting. You can try sun ovens. Therefore, we recommend that you learn to control fire to provide for your future. Find essential information on our website.

What was the primitive method used for cooking?

There are several primitive cooking routines that you can find in the article above. Try earth stoves someday. This solution has always been popular in different cultures at all times.


A former USA Army sergeant and a highly educated survivalist and prepper with a degree and interest in Engineering and Electronics, Mike Millerson applies his extensive expertise in survivalism, homesteading, backpacking, hiking and hunting, spreading his deep knowledge about handling emergencies and prepping for them reasonably and effectively.




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