How to make a camp oven

Updated July 06, 2018

Would you like to bake some flaky biscuits, crusty bread or delicious cake over your camp fire? Craving a slow-cooked venison roast? Then you will need this portable, disposable camp oven. Sturdy enough to last through a weekend camp-out, cheap enough to toss away, this oven can be made from at least 50 per cent recycled materials.

Sit the box on its short end so that the length of the box is upright, perpendicular to the ground. Leave long flaps in place, as these will serve as your doors. Cut away flaps from short ends, if there are any.

Cover the entire box inside and out with heavy-duty aluminium foil. Use long pieces, wrapping around the inside and outside of box, pushing and shaping foil into place. Secure with staples where necessary. The box in this image was made with only one door. However, a two-door oven makes it easier to slide the aluminium pans in and out without getting burnt. Be sure to turn the box back onto its short end again after you have finished covering it with foil. The box should stand at least 18 inches tall. Turning the box this way gives you more space between the coals and the bottom of your baking pan. This gives you more control over how much heat reaches your pan.

Make three holes each on the right and left sides of the box, making sure all the holes are level with each other. Make sure no cardboard is exposed. If necessary, take bits of foil and work them through the holes until the cardboard is covered. Carefully slide skewers through holes. These will be your oven rack. The rounded dots on the image are for skewer placement. The square dots are for air flow. Be sure to make air flow holes on at least three sides, omitting the doors.

Wipe the entire surface of the oven--using a wad of paper towel dipped in extra virgin olive oil--inside and out with a light coating of oil. Place one of the two aluminium foil pans in the bottom of the oven, and fill it with apple wood chips or junk mail logs cut to fit the pan. Light your fuel and allow everything to burn for about 10 to 15 minutes while doors are nearly all the way closed. This is to season your oven and make it more flame resistant.

Once your fuel has burnt down to coals, place food to be baked on the second aluminium pan, and place it on the skewer shelf. Experiment with your own recipes until you find the correct cooking time and temperature. Close the doors to keep heat in if you need a hotter fire, and add more fuel if needed. This oven should hold up through at least one full weekend of camping. Discard in appropriate container when no longer usable.


Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold when eating outdoors.

Things You'll Need

  • Medium-size cardboard box, approximately 18-by-12-by-9 inches
  • Heavy-duty aluminium foil
  • Stapler
  • 3 metal skewers, longer than the width of the box
  • 2 9-by-12-inch aluminium baking pans
  • Matte knife
  • Screwdriver
  • Apple wood chips
  • Junk mail logs
  • Fireplace matches
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About the Author

Jane Smith has provided educational support, served people with multiple challenges, managed up to nine employees and 86 independent contractors at a time, rescued animals, designed and repaired household items and completed a three-year metalworking apprenticeship. Smith's book, "Giving Him the Blues," was published in 2008. Smith received a Bachelor of Science in education from Kent State University in 1995.