WHY HAVE EMERGENCY COOKING EQUIPMENT?
Well, you only need to have it if you’d like to be able to cook in an emergency the food you’ve been storing. There are a lot of different options and I would suggest when trying to figure out which of these to purchase try to pick one that you’d use not in an emergency as well. It needs to be something you’re willing to practice with and USE. If you don’t practice with it and learn how to use it NOW, it may end up being a complete waste of money if you can’t figure it out when you need it in an emergency situation!
DO IT YOURSELF OVENS:
Alcohol Stove: Reheats foods quite well in small portions, you may need to use more than one at a time for larger portions or to heat faster. Use lid whenever possible to increase efficiency. There are many homemade varieties of alcohol stoves, such as Stove-in-a-Can, as well as commercial ones available. They are usually small and frequently used by backpackers. Alcohol (in its pure forms) may be used indoors because it burns clean. However, use caution as some forms may be toxic and need ventilation. If you are going to use it indoors, make sure there is a WORKING CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR!
- For instructions on how to make your own, click HERE. OR you can also purchase a Stove in a Can, HERE.
Applebox Oven: DO NOT USE INDOORS This is simply a box that apples come in covered inside and out with heavy-duty aluminum foil. All it needs is a few pieces of charcoal to turn it into a baking machine capable of cooking anything you would cook in an oven and in the same amount of time. It is quick, easy, and cheap. A great addition to your cooking without power needs.
- For instructions for how to make and use an Applebox oven, click HERE.
Ice Chest Cooker: Like using a slow-cooker with no electricity. Secret is in the insulation. You just bring your meal to a boil in a bot, cover with tight fitting lid, turn down heat and simmer on medium for 3 minutes (exception beans 10-15 minutes) then quickly put in cooker (make sure you have a towel in the bottom so your pot won’t burn the plastic), cover with lid and leave for 4 times the usual cooking time. That’s it! No stirring or burning. Food can be left up to 6 hours and still be hot and delicious. It is perfect for foods that start out with a lot of liquid: soups, stews, rice, and more. For safety, food must stay about 150 degrees, if it drops below that; remove, reheat, and replace.
GREAT COOKING OPTIONS FOR 72 HOUR KITS:
MRE Heaters: are designed to heat Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) meals quickly and safely without a fire. You can also heat up other foods that are water tight and small enough to fit in the bag. They are made from powdered food grade iron, magnesium, and sodium. When water is added to the chemicals in the heater it creates a chemical reaction that heats up almost instantly. It takes about 10-15 minutes to heat up food in an MRE. These are great for 72-hour kits.
- Learn more about MRE Heaters or to purchase, click HERE.
Portable Grill: With legs it can be placed over a small fire or charcoal briquettes. It makes a good cooking area. Food may be cooked directly on the grill or in pots and pans over the hot coals. The girls are inexpensive ($10-15) and widely available.
Solid Fuel Tablets such as trioxane fuel bars or Esbit fuel tablets are great for emergency kits. They are designed to work in a pocket stove. They are non-explosive, portable, smokeless, and light easily. They should only be used outdoors and are not good for cooking large amounts of food. One tablet will generate 1400 degrees of intense hat for 12-15 minutes of useable burn time. It will bring one pint of water to a rolling boil in less than 8 minutes. They are safe, easy to store, and have an indefinite shelf life.
- To learn more or to purchase Solid Fuel Tablets, click HERE.
LITTLE OR NO FUEL OVENS:
Cook and Carry System: (by Thermos Nissan) It works like a hay box using modern technology which makes it super simple to use. The pot holds 4.7 quarts. The manufacturer guarantees heat or cold retention for 6-8 hours. It has the TherMax double wall vacuum insulation for maximum temperature retention. Unbreakable stainless steel interior and exterior. This is wonderful for soups, chili, beans, and stew. However, it will not cook a large roast well.
Solar Cooking: This type of cooking only needs the sun and works equally well in the summer OR winter. It works by harnessing the power of the sun’s rays. You can cook anything with this method, it just usually takes a little longer than with traditional methods. You can even sanitize water with it. It is easy to use; although practice makes perfect, and very satisfying, because you don’t need any fuel but the sun. They range in price from a few dollars for the simple to the hundreds for the deluxe, such as the Global Sun Oven. (That is what I have!)
- To learn more about the solar oven, I have and use-click HERE.
Volcano Cook Stove: This is a wonderful emergency preparedness tool. It will cook just about anything and can be used as a safe fire pit. The Volcano Cook Stove is incredibly efficient, requiring on-half of the charcoal required for standard Dutch oven cooking. This stove can burn virtually any type of fuel. Scrap 2x4s, firewood, commercial logs, or scraps of wood will do just fine. It has almost no exterior heat at the bottom or sides making it safer to use.
- To learn more about the Volcano Cook Stove (which I love and also use), click HERE.
FUEL OVENS AND GRILLS:
Butane Stoves: These stoves are lightweight, convenient, and easy to use. They provide a nice hot flame and many come with an automatic electric ignition and provide excellent flame control. Butane stoves are lighter and more portable than liquid fuel stoves. Butane does not vaporize well at near-freezing temperatures. The stove may sputter and misfire in cold temperatures. The fuel is fairly expensive. One 8 oz. butane canister will provide 1-2 hours of burn time at maximum output. The recommended shelf life for a butane canister is 8 years. Store with care as the fuel is highly flammable.
- Learn more about Butane Stoves or to purchase one, click HERE.
Camp Stoves: This camping favorite runs off of “Coleman” fuel or white gas or propane which are inexpensive and widely available. There is a “dual fuel” design that will also run off of unleaded gasoline (gray tank). These stoves are dependable and easy to use. They produce a nice hot, eve flame and is great for camping or emergency use outdoors. Also available is a single burner stove. It is a great emergency stove. It is lightweight and portable. Best of all, it can safely use Coleman fuel/white gas, unleaded gasoline, or kerosene. Two pints will burn for about 2 hours with both burners on high. Remember that white gas or “Coleman” fuel and propane produce carbon monoxide and should never be used inside. Use caution when storing the fuel and using the stove.
- To learn about or purchase the most popular form of this the CAMP CHEF, click HERE.
Canned Heat: Stores easily and can be used indoors. Cans are filled with forms of alcohol. It puts out a flame and a good amount of heat. They are safe, lightweight, store nicely, and are great for reheating foods. Burns 2-6 hours per can. Can be used in a small Sterno stove, chafing dish, or fondue pot. You can cover flame partially with lid to slow cooking down or use more than one at a time to heat things faster or hotter. Store in a cool place. To extinguish, cover with lid. Stir food frequently to prevent burning. Stores 10 years.
Dutch Oven: Dutch ovens are big, heavy cast-iron pots with lids. They are incredible versatile and can be used to cook: breads, main dishes, and desserts. You can cook with them over an open fire, in a buried fire pit, in your oven, over our stove burners, over coals or using briquettes. They work as frying pans, pots and ovens. They come in many sizes. Important: Tight fitting lid with rim and legs (to prevent burning). You can cook pretty much anything. No need to wash (scrap, cook, oil). Food tastes fantastic. Dutch Ovens Last F-O-R-E-V-E-R! Before using it the first time you will need to season your oven. (Click HERE for an informative video about how to season your dutch oven.)
- For more information or to purchase a pre-seasoned oven, click HERE.
Kerosene Stove: It is basically the same wick you would see in a large kerosene heater. This is a sturdy stove with an easily adjustable flame and a sealed fuel tank (some stoves have fuel “pans’ that hold the fuel, but tipped, the fuel can spill out.) The Sockwick will burn for 13 hours on one gallon of kerosene. The maximum output is 9000 BTUs. Use only in a well-ventilated area!
- For more information or to purchase a Kerosene Stove, click HERE.
Propane Stoves: These are great for camping and outdoor cooking. They are great for emergency cooking…an added bonus! Propane cooks hot and fast. One 20 lb. tank of propane may provide up to 15 hours of cooking time. The shelf life on propane is nearly indefinite. The tanks, however , need to be closely watched for signs of rust, dents, or anything, which may present a problem with leakage. Use in a well ventilated area and store fuel carefully away from the home. Also, check your home warranty-some become void in a fire if you have more than a certain amount of propane in or around your home.
- To learn more or to purchase a propane stove, click HERE.
Rocket Stove: These are made fro ma 5 gallon metal can, stove pipe and a soup can. This stove will cook a full meal with just a handful of twigs. It makes very high heat (regulate heat by amount of fuel). Great for bringing food to a quick boil. Can is filled with insulating material (ashes, etc.) It burns so hot here is very little smoke. It is amazing. Outside cooking only. Will make your pots black.
For more information or to purchase a rocket stove, click HERE.
A special thanks to Debbie Kent from www.peaceofpreparedness.com for sharing all of this wonderful information!