Planning to turn your overlanding journey into a culinary adventure? Dialing in your outdoor kitchen camp setup is the key! This guide will take you step by step through the process of setting up your mobile kitchen and making your camping experience hassle-free. We'll cover everything—from selecting the optimal layout and packing essential gear to emphasizing the importance of preparedness and creating a functional, cozy setup at your campsite. Get ready to elevate your camping game and cook up some delicious outdoor meals.

Step 1: Plan Your Layout

Before you hit the road for your camping trip, let's chat about game-planning your setup. Take a moment to think about how much space you'll need for all your gear and food. Think about where your stove will go, where you'll set up your sturdy table, and where you'll stash all your cooking essentials – you know, pots, pans, and the works. In this case, if you have the gear it's best to do a mock load-up to ensure you have enough space to bring all of the essentials. Remember, it's best to leave some extra room, especially if you're stopping at a grocery store before your endeavor. 

It's important to remember items that will help you in creating your own comfy corner in the great outdoors. So, grab a drink, jot down some notes, and get ready to make your camping spot a cozy place to take in the scenery around you. 

Camp Kitchen Drawer StorageiKamper Cookset

Step 2: Pick Your Gear Wisely

When gearing up for your outdoor cooking adventures, selecting tools that endure the rugged outdoors and also offer convenient storage solutions is crucial. First things first, let's talk storage and how you're going to have it packed and pristine. When looking for storage options you could look at installing a drawer system or you can opt for a storage box for a simpler option. Next, consider opting for heavy-duty pots and pans that not only withstand campfire cooking but also nest into each other, maximizing storage space for other necessities. Now for your stove, prioritize portability, ease of use, and quick setup. Consider your specific needs, such as the requirement for multiple burners, preferred fuel type, or adjustability for simmering.

Now, let's talk about the MVP of your camp kitchen—the table. Ensure it's sturdy enough to handle your culinary camp creations without collapsing. All-in-one solutions like the iKamper Disco or the Aioks offer compact setups without compromising essential functionalities. Moving on to the essentials – spatulas, silverware, plates, and bowls – not only are these items necessary, but they make it easy to share a meal while meeting new people along the way. However, once the meal is created and savored, it's time for cleanup. Prioritize cleanliness by packing biodegradable soap, scrubbers, and trash bags to keep your outdoor kitchen pristine. For some tried-and-true kitchen favorites, we've added a list of our favorites at the end to kickstart your outdoor cooking experience:
So, whether you're a camping rookie or a seasoned outdoor chef, having the right gear – the heavy-duty cookware, portable stove, sturdy table, utensils, and cleaning essentials – sets the stage for some amazing campfire feasts. 

camp dish washing kithanging around camp and cooking

Step 3: Practice Setting Up Everything Before Your Trip

Before you hit the road, here's a tip: give your outdoor kitchen a practice run. Imagine being out in the wild, craving a campfire-cooked meal, and then realizing you're missing gear.

So, find a spot at home, toss your gear together, and do a little dry run. Test out the cookware, the stove, the table, and all those utensils. Where you might be thinking ‘Why bother?’, Well, first off, it helps you get the hang of setting things up. There's nothing worse than thinking you have all the pieces or fumbling around once you get to your campsite for the night. Plus, it's your chance to spot any wear and tear or sneaky damage. Better to find out your gear needs to be repaired in your backyard than in the middle of nowhere.

Not to mention this also adds peace of mind. Knowing you've practiced, everything works, and all the pieces are in place sets the stage for a laid-back camping vibe. A little prep now means no campsite chaos later, and you'll be ready to cook up a storm in the great outdoors. So, take a breather, and rehearse that outdoor kitchen setup – your future hungry self will be grateful!

Cooking on the iKamper AIOKSCooking a Grilled Cheese

Step 4: Setting Up Your Gear at the Campsite

Setting up your gear at the campsite is like the sweet spot of your camping adventure. It's all about finding that perfect balance between practicality and comfort, creating a setup that's as functional as it is cozy. So, embrace the outdoor chef vibes, use those utensils like a professional, and get ready to cook up some delicious meals in the great outdoors. 

Looking for More Camping Gear?

Level up your camping game with iKamper's gear that not only saves space but can handle whatever your adventures throw at it. Don't miss out on the essentials – swing by our hub: A Guide to Cooking Outside on Your Next Camping Trip. Additionally, here are some of our team's favorite camp meals for inspiration: Pasta CarbonaraSweet & Spicy Salmon, Camp Doughnuts, and Banh Xeo (Vietnamese Tumeric Crepes).


Gear Recommendations

 Pots and Pans:






 Clean Up: