Best cookware for an open fire

Best Camping Cookware for an Open Fire

If you are a lover of the outdoors and a camping enthusiast, you know the importance of having the right cooking equipment. When you are out camping, you will cook using open fire or campfires and require cooking equipment that withstands extreme heat.

You cannot use a regular pan that can get damaged through direct contact with the flame or cookware that will leach chemicals and give your food an unpleasant taste.

Below is our review of the best camping cookware for an open fire with high reviews, from campers like us, who have used them.

#1. Backcountry Square Grill Pan Cast Iron

Backcountry Iron 12 Inch Square Grill Pan Large Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron

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Key Features

  • Pre-seasoned
  • High heat retention
  • Durable
  • Versatile


  • It is usable for grilling, broiling, or sauteing.
  • Superior heat retention and heat distribution.
  • Ready to use because it is pre-seasoned.
  • It provides an authentic grilled flavor to the meat.
  • It can accommodate all kinds of meat for grilling.
  • Designed with durability in mind.


  • It can be heavy for some campers.

Final Verdict

Provides even cooking and is already pre-seasoned, so cooking is simple and easy. It is perfect to use when you want to broil, grill, or even sauté while camping and only require a thin layer of oil to have every cooking turn out perfectly.

You can use this cookware on various cooking surfaces, whether it is on an open fire while camping or when you use it on a gas or electric stove.

The design is perfect, to keep the food from falling off the edge while you are grilling, and the pan provides a searing quality and produces a grilled flavor.

Since it is durable, owners of this cookware will enjoy this product for years.

#2. Dutch Oven Pre-seasoned Cast Iron by Overmont

Overmont Camp Dutch Oven Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Lid Also a Skillet Casserole Pot with Lid Lifter for Camping Cooking BBQ Baking 9QT(Pot+Lid)

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Key Features

  • Durable
  • Economical
  • Heats fast
  • Versatile
  • Non-Toxic


  • Made of highly durable material that will last for years.
  • Manufactured using only great engineering to come up with perfectly designed cookware.
  • The lid is also usable as a skillet.
  • It is highly versatile cookware to provide you with years of cooking satisfaction.


  • Expensive

Final Verdict

They made this cookware using only high-quality cast iron, making this product a lifetime pot perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. The Overmont Dutch boasts of a considerable weight cast iron cookware that is still manageable for most campers and will not find it too heavy during transport.

They equipped it with a durable handle that is as sturdy as the whole pot and will not cause any incident while cooking. The addition of integral legs on the pot, and lid makes it possible for this cookware to sit steadily over the open fire making your cooking safe.

If you are a camper who prefers not just grilling and frying while camping, then this is the right choice of cookware for you.

#3. Black Combo Cooker by Lodge / Cast Iron

Lodge LCC3 Cast Iron Combo Cooker, Pre-Seasoned, 10.25" -Quart

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Key Features

  • Seasoned
  • Durable
  • Ready to use
  • It can be used on grills, campfires, or other cooking surfaces


  • Even heating
  • No chemicals or synthetic coatings used
  • Affordable and a well-trusted brand


  • Heavy

Final Verdict

The Lodge Combo Cooker is versatile and durable cookware. It boasts of high-quality manufacture that sees to the usability and the affordability of the product. They made this cookware of cast iron that provides even heat distribution and heat retention.

It is a set of skillets that doubles as a lid and Dutch oven. The beauty of this product is its usability, whether you are at home preparing a perfect meal or camping and cooking using a campfire.

Since it is already seasoned, you can use it immediately when you go camping. Perfect for sautéing, simmering, or simply frying a simple meal.

#4. Cuisinel Cast-Iron Skillet Pre-seasoned

Cuisinel Cast Iron Skillets Set - 4-Piece Chef Pans - 6" + 8" + 10" + 12"-Inch + 4 Heat-Resistant Handle Holders - Pre-Seasoned Oven Safe Cookware - Indoor/Outdoor Use - Grill, Stovetop, BBQ Safe

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Key Features

  • 6-Piece set
  • Cast Iron
  • Versatile
  • Durable


  • You have options on what to use with the different variations in sizes.
  • It is versatile and usable for many types of outdoor cooking.
  • With a removable silicone holder which makes it easy for you to carry the pan without getting burned.
  • Durable, sturdy, and can be used for years.


  • Heavy for some campers to carry around.
  • It requires effort to clean it because of the weight.

Final Verdict

They made this cookware using cast iron that provides even heat while cooking in an open fire. It is also usable on grills and cooktops and gives a perfect cooking outcome.

With the different size variations, the user will have an option on what size to use depending on how many people need feeding. It is the perfect cookware for braising, grilling, baking, broiling, sauteing, frying, and more.

Since it is pre-seasoned, it is ready to use, plus it is also equipped with a silicone handle to protect against heat for users.

It is not just campers who will enjoy this cookware, but homeowners will see the usability of this product cause it can last for years  and stays durable as it ages.

#5. Lixada Titanium Cookware Set for Camping

Lixada Camping Titanium Pot,750ml Titanium Pot with 420ml Water Cup Mug Folding Spork Camping Cookware Set for Outdoor Camping Hiking Backpacking

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Key Features

  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Compact
  • Convenient


  • Made of corrosion-resistant material.
  • It is lighter than stainless steel but as durable.
  • Collapsible handle for easy storage.
  • Versatile cookware for camping.
  • Incorporates spoon for eating after meal preparation.
  • Includes a carrying bag for easy transport.
  • Retains heat and distributes heat fast to make each cooking swift.
  • Considered a great buy because it is cost-effective.


  • Pots may be too small for some users.

Final Verdict

When you prefer to camp with just a few lightweight things to lug around, this cookware can be your choice of cooking material.

Since it is of titanium, you can expect to have portable and lightweight cookware that is useful and versatile. It can fit inside your backpack as it does not require enormous storage space. It also comes with a storage sack to keep it protected during transport.

This product will also provide a great cooking experience because of the quick and even heat retention. With a cup for your coffee fix, when you need it, and the pot, you can use for cooking. The spork also comes in handy to make it easy for you to eat after each food preparation.

#6. Deep Camp 8-quart Dutch Oven by Lodge

Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Deep Camp Dutch Oven - 12 Inch / 8 Quart

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Key Features

  • Highly versatile
  • Big cooking space
  • Pre-seasoned
  • Durable
  • Good heat retention


  • Non-toxic materials used
  • It does not give off a strange food flavor
  • It heats quickly and provides even heating for a perfect cooking outcome.
  • Includes a cookbook to provide users with more tips and ideas.
  • It is perfect for sauteing, broiling, frying, braising, and more.


  • Maybe too heavy for some campers.

Final Verdict

It is another cookware that has high approval from campers. Even though it is a bit heavy for some but because of its versatility and durability, it is the go-to cookware for hikers and campers alike. Cookware is used not just for one type of cooking but for several cooking preferences.

Since it is a cast iron cookware, you can rely on its durability because it also improves with age and is one you can use for years. It is money well spent and may be handed down from one generation to another.

#7. Yodo Aluminum Cookware Set for Camping

Yodo Anodized Aluminum Camping Cookware Set Backpacking Pans Pot Mess Kit for 4-5 Person

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Key Features

  • Heats quickly
  • Easy to clean
  • Bigger cooking capacity
  • Durable
  • Portable


  • Easy to transport
  • Has foldable handle
  • Versatile
  • Perfect heat conductor
  • Quick-cooking due to even heat distribution


  • Handles may not be as durable when unfolded

Final Verdict

If you are camping with the family, you need not look elsewhere for camping cookware that can accommodate the meal preparation the whole family demands. The cookware set includes a pan, 5-bowls, a large plate, three pots, a rice handle, a soup spoon, and 2-medium plates which are perfect for a family of 5.

The anodized aluminum also provides better heat transfer, retains the heat, and causes food to cook swiftly.

The folding handle provides better storage and makes the set compact, unlike cookware with handles that get in the way and require larger storage for transport.

This cookware set is just the cooking materials you and your family will need while camping, as it will provide you a smooth cooking experience.

#8. Cookware Mess Kit for Camping by Odoland

Odoland Camping Cookware Mess Kit, Lightweight Pot Pan Kettle with 2 Cups, Fork Spoon Kit Stainless Steel, gray for Backpacking, Outdoor Camping Hiking and Picnic

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Key Features

  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Well designed
  • Cost-Effective


  • Set constitutes 10-pieces of cooking gear for convenience.
  • Designed with heat-resistant handles.
  • Non-stick and designed with durability.
  • It includes a mesh bag for easy storage and transport.
  • Made of stainless steel, and will not warp nor rust easily.


  • Handles tend to heat up and make the pots difficult to hold.

Final Verdict

This 10-piece cookware kit is perfect for couples who love to experience outdoor hiking or camp. The kit includes not just a pan, pots, kettle, and cups but also a fork, and spoon. A carrying bag is added, for easy transport.

They equipped the handles with a heat-resistant material for safety. This product can conduct heat quickly, making it possible to cook food fast, and gives you a good cooking experience each time.

This cookware has a foldable handle, so it will not require too much space when being stored or transported and will not leave you baffled about how you will bring it with you whether you are going backpacking, hiking, or camping.

#9. Camping Cookware by MalloMe

MalloMe Camping Cookware 18pc Mess Kit w/Backpacking Stove – Camping Cooking Set for Backpacking Gear - Camping Pots and Pans Set w/Camping Pot Pan Stove Utensils Camp Kitchen Equipment Accessories

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Key Features

  • Stainless steel and anodized aluminum material
  • From cooking to eating
  • Compact


  • Easy to use
  • It is equipped with the necessary items you need for cooking and can use it directly when eating.
  • Portable and can fit in small spaces.
  • Heats fast


  • Non-stick, best for boiling eggs and cooking instant noodles.
  • It will need oil if you use it for frying.
  • You can use it with controlled open fires.
  • Plastic handles.

Final Verdict

Because of the non-toxic materials used to manufacture this cookware, campers will not have any qualms about using this item. It can perfectly fit a meal for one person but can also accommodate two people with less food requirement.

It is the best tool for survival when camping outdoors because it is not just cookware, but it is equipped with all the tools one will require for eating after cooking.

However, it requires a controlled open fire since the handles are made of plastic. Also, the pot will need oil if you use it for frying since it is not non-stick cookware.

#10. Alpine Stowaway Pot by MSR

MSR Alpine Stainless Steel Stowaway Camping Pot, 775 mL

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Key Features

  • Affordable
  • Versatile
  • Lightweight


  • It may store away minor items when not used for cooking.
  • It heats fast and can accommodate a meal for 2-people.
  • It does not require an enormous space inside your bag.
  • Hinges keep it closed tight.


  • The stains at the bottom of the pot take time to clean.

Final Verdict

Campers may find this cookware versatile since it is not just used for cooking food but can use it to store small items. It can also carry and protect food from spilling because of the hinges that keep food secured.

This item is also for hikers and campers who want to get a product that will be useful but will not put a dent in their pocket. Since this one is affordable, many campers recommended it. It requires a small space in your bag because of its size.

Cost-effective yet highly useful, and when you need cookware that will heat fast when preparing your food, this one will not disappoint.

Frequently Asked Questions

What cookware is perfect for cooking on an open fire?

The best cookware for open fire cooking is a cast iron cookware. Since it is an open fire, you will need cookware that will not warp or get destroyed at the first exposure to heat. It should also be a good conductor of heat and distribute heat evenly to help cook meals fast. Cast iron cookware is also considered a healthier choice of cookware than other materials.

Do you need to preheat a cast-iron pan before use?

It would be best to preheat the pan for about 5 to 10 minutes before cooking because the cast iron pan is slower to heat. When you preheat, it will distribute the heat evenly over the pan and makes cooking fast.

What are mistakes when cleaning a cast iron cookware?

When you are using a cast-iron skillet to cook food while camping, it is advised not to soak the pan or the pot in water cause it will cause rusting in cast-iron, particularly if you don’t have a seasoned cast-iron skillet.

How about stainless steel cookware? Can we use it on an open fire?

Stainless steel cookware is also considered good cookware for open fire cooking during camping. Remember to choose one without handles made of plastic or rubber, as this will melt at the first exposure to heat.

Be aware of a black coating at the bottom of the pot when using stainless steel cookware in a campfire. It is one you can scrub off and clean.

Can we use aluminum in an open fire?

There is a certain degree that aluminum can withstand before it starts to melt. When using in an open fire, make sure you are using a controlled campfire to avoid melting. Although your aluminum cookware may not melt, your food can burn during cooking. Anodized aluminum is different from a regular aluminum pan.

What are the various types of camping cookware and their advantages?

Companies that manufacture cookware have been developing cookware using materials that are more durable yet economical at the same time. At present, there is cookware made of aluminum, stainless steel, non-stick, and cast iron.

Cast iron: cookware is open fire safe. It is preferred by many for its durability and versatility. Food also tastes better when cooked using a pot or pan made of cast iron.

Stainless steel: is another material preferred by campers as it does not rust and is highly resistant to any presence of chemicals. Because of the durability of stainless steel, it can even be used by the next generation.

Aluminum: is considered a good heat conductor, but acidic food cooked using aluminum may react to the material. Aluminum is inexpensive and preferred by most backpackers because they are also lightweight.

Another material used by many homeowners is Teflon, but not by many campers. Teflon is risky as it can cause flu-like symptoms because of the fumes it gives off when exposed to high heat.

Which is better for open fire use, stainless steel or hard-anodized aluminum?

Hard-anodized aluminum cookware comes in a non-stick variety and is considered useful by many users, but it is also linked with some health concerns. There are still some manufacturers who may still use perfluorooctanoic acid or PFOA. Stainless steel is safer to use.

How do you safely cook in an open fire using any type of cookware?

It is recommended not to cook directly over the open fire, and one must use caution not just to prevent foods from getting burned but for overall safety. One must not leave what they are cooking for a long duration if they do not want an overcooked food.

You may use medium or low heat depending on what you are cooking. Wearing safety gear such as a pair of gloves while cooking in an open fire is ideal.

Not staying too close to the flames is also recommended, and ensure you are not wearing anything that may catch flames.

Are regular pans safe to use in an open fire?

Regular pans are not the best cookware for open fire cooking as their surface can get damaged and release chemicals that can mix with the food you are preparing.

When you are unsure of the material used in the pan’s manufacture, better not use it for open fire cooking. Cast-iron is always the safe choice and is highly recommended by experts. Even though it takes some time before the heat is distributed evenly, it retains the heat for even cooking.

Is it safe to use aluminum foil as a cover for cookware while cooking in an open fire?

Heavy-duty aluminum foil is the best alternative as a cookware cover when cooking in an open flame. The discoloration commonly seen in aluminum foil is due to direct fire exposure and is not a product of something toxic.

Some campers also use aluminum foil to prepare a variety of food such as meat, fish, and more.

Which is more cost-effective when buying camping cookware?

Versatility is the best option rather than quantity, but it will depend on the number of people you have to feed while camping. If you need to prepare for the entire family, complete cookware is the best option since it combines plates, spoons, and not just cookware. It often includes cups for coffee as well. But if you are just camping by yourself, you can get a few pieces that are simple and easy to use.

Do you need to season a cast-iron skillet?

Yes, for you to enjoy its full benefits, it requires seasoning. Applying a think coat of cooking oil, and baking it in an oven for a time, will help season cast iron cookware. Nowadays, you can purchase pre-seasoned cast iron, this will not require any seasoning, and you can use it immediately after purchase.

Is Teflon cookware safe to use?

Teflon cookware, when exposed to extreme heat exceeding 570 degrees Fahrenheit, may give off fumes that lead to what experts call Teflon Flu. It is still dangerous, according to experts, and they agree that Teflon pan can also be a waste of money as it does not last long.

Is it hard to clean cast iron cookware?

Using a sponge and dishwashing soap is enough to clean cast-iron cookware. It is not recommended to use a metal scrubber as it can remove the seasoning. Also, it is not suggested to use harsh chemicals even if you have rusted cast-iron cookware.

Dry off the cookware after and re-season by heating it and removing all the moisture. You need to apply a thin layer of oil to the surface and dry it off with a paper towel.

What do you need to consider when choosing cookware to use during camping and cooking in an open fire?

When purchasing cookware for camping use, you need to consider the materials used, durability, capacity or size, portability, heat retention, versatility, and handle material. Also, you need to analyze what is more important to you while camping. Is it the portability, the size, or just the ease of use?

What are helpful tips when cooking meals while camping?

Prepare some of the ingredients you need at home so you won’t need to do much once you arrive at the camping site. There is also no need to bring too many items and help lighten up your load.

Prepare simple meals that are great tasting and quick to cook. No need to prepare gourmet meals or a sumptuous feast when you go camping, the simpler, the better.

What are typical problems faced by cookware users while camp cooking?

Some campers experienced getting burned because the cookware they purchased has a handle that heats up. Other campers get scalded when the cookware they are using toppled over, getting their hands or other parts of their body burned.

When children and pets are present in family camping, they sometimes get into accidents because they are near the open fire or touched the cookware.

What is the importance of purchasing high-quality cookware for camping?

It is recommended to go for a well-known brand of cookware instead of the cheap ones that will give you more problems in the long run. Some predicaments encountered are

  • Handles flying off the pots or pans,
  • Uneven pot surface that makes it prone to toppling.
  • Pots and pans produce a ghastly taste to the food.
  • Cookware that does not last
  • Cookware that warps and leaks chemicals to the food you are preparing.

What to remember when cooking in an open fire?

Get durable cookware and refrain from purchasing the aesthetically appealing variety that will not provide you with a satisfying cooking outcome.

Some cookware have plastic materials that can melt. It can be the pot or the cover handle that can melt when exposed to high heat. Rubber-coated handles will also give you the same result, so avoid getting such cookware.

Does price matter when purchasing cookware to use for camp cooking?

Expensive cookware is expertly made. Handles are better, the materials used are high quality, and they are worth the expenses eventually as you enjoy using them for years. Remember, when you are buying a product, you are also investing in it, considering it will last not just for years but up to a decade, even more.

Also, when you buy expensive cookware, you are not just buying a brand name, but you are ensuring the superior quality of your purchase.

When you are a camping enthusiast, you will benefit more from expensive cookware, particularly, if camping is how you de-stress and relax with your family. It will be the most utilized material you will be bringing on each camping trip.

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