Camping is a part of most Australians' holiday experience, but getting set up to go on your adventures can be expensive. Use our 6 tips on how to get your camp kitchen set up on a budget, and you’ll be ‘good to go.’
1. Pots & Pans
We all need to cook at camp, and we don’t need to fork out hundreds of dollars on fancy pots and pans to make a great meal while camping. Start off by going through your cupboards and seeing what you already have. If you’re thinking of replacing your old pots and pans, cutlery etc, start by slowly replacing them and put the old ones aside in the garage to build up your camp kitchen necessities.
If you don’t have anything to put aside, Op Shops are your new best friend! You can find some amazing bargains and some cool retro cookware for a couple of dollars to funk up your camping collection! Life’s too short for boring!
2. The Camp Kitchen Table
So, what are we going to prep our food on? A blow mould table is all you need. They are cheap, sturdy, durable, fold down easily and are easy to clean. We like the 6-foot folding tables at Bunnings like this Lifetime Bi-Fold one here.
3. Cooking at Camp
There are so many ways to cook your food at camp. For us, we mainly camp off grid and rely on our campfire to do most of the cooking. We find it makes for a much nicer experience and keeps things simple. You can get some fancy BBQ plates to put over your campfire, but if you’re on a budget we’ve had endless dinners on our BBQ plate from 4WD SupaCentre.
If cooking over the fire isn’t your thing, butane stoves are a cheap option to get you started. The butane cans are relatively cheap, however you can go through them quite quickly if you’re needing to boil a lot of water for showers and especially if there’s a fire ban on.
4. Camping Fridges
Camping fridges are bloody brilliant, but not necessary if you’re just starting out on small trips. A simple cooler will do the trick for your camp kitchen. While the cheaper coolers don’t hold ice as well as the roto moulded coolers they’re perfect for a couple days away. We like this 43L cooler from Big W.
It’s a good idea to prepare ahead of time, freezing your meat and ensuring everything you plan to pack is kept cool. The cooler should be one of the last things you finish packing before leaving to ensure everything is kept as cold as possible.
I also find freezing some large bottles of water two weeks out to put in your cooler along with the ice helps reduce how quickly the temperature rises, plus you have icy cold water to drink once it’s defrosted!
5. Food Storage
You don’t need to get out of control with our food storage for your camp kitchen. Yes, there’s some pretty cool camping pantries and storage boxes and bags but when you're getting yourself set up on a budget, they’re not necessary.
Simple plastic storage boxes do the job just fine - it's what we’ve always used. Big W has this great 80L heavy duty storage box for just $25. That’s heaps of space to back all your food in.
Another great option is their 50L waterproof plastic storage box for the same price. Clear storage boxes are a great option as you can see from the outside where your food is and keep track of how much you have left.
6. Kitchen Clean Up
I’m a big advocate for being environmentally friendly while camping. So, I always encourage spending the little bit extra on biodegradable soaps, and reusable dish clothes you can throw in the washing machine when you get home from camp. But you’ll still need something to wash up in. Kmart has a great little collapsible camping skin that does the job well for just $19.
If you find these are too small for your needs a collapsible laundry basket works well as a sink too and comes in handy as your hot water bucket for showers as well.
Camping is one of the most popular outdoor activities here in Australia but getting prepared doesn’t have to be as hard or as expensive as it seems. We hope these tips on setting up and selecting the best (and most affordable) items for your camp kitchen will help you make the most of your trip.
To finish your set up with camping chairs and/or durable and adorable boho sleeping bags, explore The Boho Camping Co. full range here today.
And remember: don’t let that fire be the only thing that’s hot at your campsite!
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