When it comes to an emergency or disaster, we still need to eat! If you have natural gas or propane, then you should be good for a while. But even if you have those sources of fuel to cook, we should always have backup sources.
Sure, we could just eat stuff cold straight from the can, but we also need to think about our morale. We also need to consider others in the household. Are your kids going to eat cold chicken from a can? Maybe. Depends on the kid, but many kids won’t. My kids sure won’t.
Plus, we still need a heat source to boil water for water purification and to cook rice and pasta.
Cold from the can will work when needed, but since we’re preppers, we can prep to have alternative cooking methods ready to go.
Here are 3 alternative cooking methods for emergencies and disasters:
Camping stove –
A camping stove setup with propane/butane is a great resource for emergencies and disasters. It’s easy to setup, easy to use, fairly inexpensive and efficient. You could get a big camping stove, or maybe just a backpackers stove (with a cook pot or bear bowl), or even something like a Jetboil. It just depends on your budget and preferences.
Don’t forget to buy plenty of propane/butane. And test out your gear by actually cooking with this system as often as you can.
Word of caution: Use a camping stove setup with plenty of ventilation, such as near an open window, or better yet, outside.
BBQ/Fire/Rocket Stove –
I lumped these all in together because they need to be outdoors and with some sort of wood or charcoal. Using an existing BBQ or fire pit that you have at your home or apartment will work really well. This only works, though, if you can actually go outside and use it. If it’s storming badly out then chances are you won’t be able to use this.
A rocket stove works extremely well and it’s very easy to make.
Be sure to have plenty of the fuel sources on hand, such as charcoal or wood.
Many poo-poo solar as a cooking method, but it works much like a slow cooker. You can cook and bake and even sanitize water in a solar oven. You can make your own solar oven, there are lots of ways to make one by searching online. I even made a solar oven with a pizza box that worked pretty okay.
You could also invest in a solar oven. Do a Google search for solar ovens and be sure to read lots of reviews. I have a Solavore that works extremely well but I’m honestly unsure if they’re even still in business.
Just like cooking with fire or charcoal, this needs to be done outside and with plenty of sun. You can cook with clouds, but it just takes twice as long.
Here are some other sources that aren’t as efficient but could work in a pinch:
Candles – It takes about an hour to boil water with candles and it doesn’t properly cook food (rice comes out mushy, but it is cooked, technically), so it takes a lot of time and resources, but it could be an option if you use everything else up first. Can be used indoors.
Buddy burner – It’s so easy to make your own buddy burner and it can be used indoors. This is far more efficient than using candles. Check out the video below.
Alcohol stove – I’m not a huge fan of alcohol stoves but many are and they do work pretty well. I feel they take a lot of liquid, but they do work well. You can make your own alcohol stove very easily.
Remember that if you want to thrive, then be prepared with the proper tools and resources so that you don’t have to suffer or work harder than you have to in an emergency or disaster.
Choose the tools that are efficient and work the best and only improvise as a last resort.
Conquer tomorrow, by preparing today!