Everyone is looking forward to doing their favorite summer activities again this year, and for many people, that means a trip to their favorite campsite. If camping is your summer activity of choice, you need to ensure that you’re prepared, including having the right tools to make your favorite camping meals, such as a cast iron dutch oven.
A cast iron dutch oven is one of the most versatile tools you can bring on your camping trip and is the only pan you need to make all of your favorite meals. But how do you choose the right one that will keep up with even the most rigorous camping trips? Keep reading to discover the best cast iron dutch oven for camping and some tips for choosing the best pan for your camping needs.
Top 8 Picks for Best Cast Iron Dutch Oven for Camping
You don’t want to head to your campsite without a cast iron dutch oven, and it’s important to have the right one. Choosing the best dutch oven for camping is tricky, but if you choose a high-quality one and lightly maintain it, it can last you a lifetime. Here are some of the best camping dutch ovens to give you a headstart.
1. Lodge Deep Camp Dutch Oven
First on our list of the best cast iron dutch ovens for camping is the Lodge Deep Camp Dutch Oven.
This Lodge dutch oven is available in various sizes ranging from 2 quarts to 10 quarts, which gives you a variety of options to choose the one that works best for your camping meal needs. However, the 8-quart size is the best size for camping as it allows you to make a variety of foods.
Made in the USA, this cast iron dutch oven is specially designed for camping. It’s safe to use on a campfire and a grill and provides even heat distribution to cook your food thoroughly. It is pre-seasoned without synthetic chemicals, with only soy and vegetable oil, and as with most cast iron cookware, the more you use it, the better the seasoning becomes.
2. Overmont Camp Dutch Oven
Next, we have the Overmont Camp Dutch Oven.
This all-around Overmont dutch oven is especially versatile because it has legs on the pot and the lid. This allows the lid to sit comfortably over the campfire so you can use it as a frying pan.
This pot is safe for use on your home stove and over a campfire, adding to its versatility. This pot also has good heat insulation and a solid seal to ensure that your food thoroughly cooks and stays hot for as long as you need it to. Plus, this dutch oven comes with a durable handle that lets you hang it over your campfire if that’s your preference.
3. Uno Casa Cast Iron Camping Dutch Oven
The Uno Casa Cast Iron Camping Dutch Oven is another versatile option that has legs on the pot and lid and a handle to hang it over the campfire. Use the lid lifter to remove the lid without burning yourself or to slide it over and take a peek at your dish.
This pre-seasoned cast iron dutch oven is easy to maintain with a little care, thanks to its durable material that also provides thorough heat distribution. As a bonus, this dutch oven also comes with various accessories, such as a heavy-duty polyester tote bag with PVC backing and a downloadable recipe ebook filled with fun camping recipes that your entire family will enjoy.
4. Meigui Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Next on our list of the best cast iron dutch ovens for camping, we have the Meigui Cast Iron Dutch Oven.
This ultra-durable heavy cast iron pot has a microporous, black matte interior that absorbs oil to create a non-stick surface resistant to scratching and chipping. The most versatile feature of this pot is the flanged lid that you can use for holding hot coals or flip over to serve as a griddle.
The shower design inside the lid promotes the circulation of water vapor to lock in moisture and maintain the flavor of your favorite dishes. Plus, the high thermal conductivity of this pot will save you cooking time so that your family can enjoy your camping meal a lot sooner.
5. Texsport Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Legs
This Texsport Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Legs is one of the best cast iron dutch ovens for camping thanks to its simplicity. This cast iron dutch oven is perfect for cooking outdoors over charcoal and has great heat distribution to allow for even and slow cooking.
The lid fits tightly enough to ensure that your food stays moist and retains its flavor, while the handle makes it easy to add more ingredients as you cook without worrying about burning yourself. Long-lasting, durable, and resistant to scratches and chipping, this cast iron dutch oven is everything you need from a camping pot.
6. ExcelSteel w/Handle & Leg Base
Next, we have the ExcelSteel w/Handle & Leg Base.
Featuring durable construction, this is a simple, yet dependable choice for the best cast iron dutch oven for camping.
This pot will surely turn into your favorite outdoor companion, as it’s meant to slow cook, bake, boil, stew, and fry a variety of foods. This 6-quart dutch oven is easy to transport thanks to the built-in carrying handle. You can hang it or place it on a flat surface. What’s more, this cast iron dutch oven is easy to clean and season for long-lasting use.
7. Camp Chef Classic 10″ Dutch Oven
Next on our list is the Camp Chef Classic 10″ Dutch Oven. This cast iron dutch oven is best used over charcoal or wood but still delivers good heat distribution to make a quality meal.
The most convenient feature of this cast iron dutch oven is the thermometer notch, which ensures that your food comes out perfectly every time. Beyond that, the flanged lid is perfect for placing coal on to get thorough heat circulation, and it has a loop handle on the lid for easy maneuvering.
8. Bruntmor Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Flanged Lid Iron Cover
Last on our list of contenders for the best cast iron dutch oven for camping is the Bruntmor Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Flanged Lid Iron Cover.
Although this cast iron dutch oven is legless, it may be exactly what you need if you like to have the bottom of your pot with a greater surface for heat contact. Easy to clean, this dutch oven is resistant to chipping and warping.
The superior heat retention of this pre-seasoned cookware makes it perfect for slow cooking, and the lid delivers extra moisture retention. Safe to use on the stove, in the oven, or over a fire, this may be the only cast iron dutch oven you’ll ever need.
What is a Cast Iron Dutch Oven for Camping?
A cast iron dutch oven is a dutch oven that is sturdy enough to handle the rigors of outdoor cooking. As opposed to many dutch ovens in homes, camping dutch ovens are not usually sealed with enamel and are more suitable for charcoal and campfire cooking.
You can use a dutch oven on your camping trip for a variety of cooking purposes, such as:
- Boiling water
- Simmering food
- Braising meat
- Pan-frying (with the lid)
You can even use your dutch oven to bake bread! It is the most versatile cooking helper on any camping trip.
What to Look Out For in the Best Cast Iron Dutch Oven for Camping
Here are a few things to look out for when choosing the best cast iron dutch oven for camping.
- Sturdiness: Considering that you will use your cast iron dutch oven outdoors, you want to ensure that the one you choose is made from 100% cast iron and is durable enough to handle whatever challenges your camping trip may bring.
- Heat resistance: Make sure that it is safe to use over a campfire or grill. Although this is true of most cast iron dutch ovens, be aware of low-quality options that might use aluminum as that is not as resistant to high heat and flames.
- Handle: Many cast iron dutch ovens for camping come with a handle to hang your dutch oven over a fire. If this is your preferred cooking method while camping, choose a cast iron dutch oven that has one.
- Legs: Most of the best cast iron dutch ovens for camping come with legs on the bottom to easily place the pot over charcoal or wood. However, some don’t have legs, which is ideal if you want more direct contact with the heat source or if you’re hanging your dutch oven. What’s more, there’s also a flanged lid so that you can easily place charcoal on the lid if needed.
Closing Thoughts: The Best Cast Iron Dutch Oven for Camping for a Great Wilderness Experience
Choosing the best cast iron dutch oven for camping is an important decision because, with proper care, it could be the cast iron dutch oven that you use for life. However, when you choose the right one, you never have to worry about how you’re going to cook your favorite camping meals again.