How to Season a Camp Oven

How to Season a Camp Oven

New camp ovens require seasoning before use

Seasoning your new camp oven is an easy process and must be done before using it for the first time. Seasoning your camp oven creates a non-stick layer on the inside of the camp oven. This layer will darken and turn black over time and is a sign of a well used and well cared-for camp oven. The seasoning process also assists in keeping the outside of your camp oven looking good.

Clean the camp oven in hot, soapy water before beginning. If the oven is brand new, it is likely to be covered with a coating of protective grease to preserve the metal and prevent it rusting. This coating must be completely removed if you don’t want your food to taste like machine oil, and requires some elbow grease, steel wool, detergent and hot water. This is the only time you should ever use detergent on your camp oven. Once all trace of the coating has been removed, it should be rinsed well, then towel dried and allowed to air dry.

Follow the same process as outlined below to re-season your camp oven from time to time.

You can use your kitchen oven, a gas BBQ with a cover or even a campfire to season you camp oven.

  1. Preheat your oven or BBQ to 200 deg C, place the dry camp oven in the centre with the lid ajar and allow it to warm slowly so it is just barely too hot to handle with bare hands. This pre-heating does two things; it drives any remaining moisture out of the metal and opens the pores of the metal.
  2. Apply a thin, even layer of cooking oil (vegetable oil works well) to the entire surface of the camp oven, from top to bottom and inside and out. Do the same with the lid.
  3. Place it back in the centre of the oven upside down to stop oil pooling in the bottom, with the lid resting on top. Leave for 1 hour at 200 deg C.  This hardens the oil on the surface of the camp oven into a protective coating.
  4. Remove the camp oven and allow it to cool slowly, when cool enough to handle apply another thin layer of oil and repeat the baking process.
  5. Allow to cool again and apply the final thin layer of oil. Do not leave any oil pooled in the bottom as this will turn rancid and ruin your new protective coating.

Your new camp oven should now have 2 baked on layers of oil and one final layer applied while still warm. Your camp oven is now seasoned and ready to use!

Remember – Always oil your oven before putting it away otherwise it will rust! Store your oven in a warm dry place to again prevent rust and always wash, or at least wipe out the oven, with fresh oil before use.


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