“If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen”-President Harry S. TrumanThis story comes from Box Oven at PreparedForSurvival.com. This looks like a fun project to try with our Cub Scout pack. However during an actual emergency I think I’d use my Little Joe BBQ grill instead of a box oven to cook food.
1 Brick (or flat rocks)
1 roll Aluminum foil, heavy-duty
1 Corrugated cardboard box
1 Metal pie pan (an old one you won’t cook with again)
3 Coat hangers
4 Charcoal briquettes, lit
1. Cover the inside and outside of the box completely with 3 or 4 layers of aluminum foil, including the flaps. Lay box on level ground so that the opening opens oven-style (front-door style is OK, too).
2. Straighten the coat hangers, then run them through the sides of the box about 2/3 of the way up from the bottom to form a rack.
3. Set brick or rocks on oven bottom. Place the live coals onto the pie pan and put the pan on brick. Use an oven mitt or hot pad to avoid burns when handling the pan.
4. Place food to be cooked onto the coat-hanger rack and close the oven door.
5. Watch carefully, checking often. Each live coal makes about 80 degrees Fahrenheit (some say 35 F)
We have a big grill at home but during an emergency I’ll want to conserve my limited supply of charcoal. So a small “beach” grill or box oven can let one confine the heat in a small space and cook with fewer briquettes. There is also a “volcano” line of products for maximizing charcoal heating:
The original Volcano stove
The Volcano II Collapsible Cookstove, its offical web site and evaluated by Scout leaders
The box oven story above mentions using “lit” charcoal. My favorite method for starting briquettes is a charcoal chimney. (YouTube demonstration) If you use lighter fluid the fumes inside a box oven will affect the food.
Another option for cardboard box ovens is solar power. See Inventor turns cardboard boxes into eco-friendly oven for more details.