Learn the best ways to make coffee while camping. These ways for making campfire coffee ensure you have a cup a joe around the campfire.
There’s something about a fresh cup of piping hot coffee in the cool stillness of a wilderness morning that just hits different.
If you’ve ever experienced campfire coffee, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, let’s see what I can do to convince you to change that.
Whether you’re a coffee connoisseur, Starbucks super-fan, or drip-coffee drinker, there’s a campsite coffee method for everyone. Let’s talk about how to make coffee while camping!
How Do you Make Coffee when Camping?
You’re probably wondering: how do I brew coffee without a coffee maker? Believe it or not, there are plenty of different ways to make coffee while you’re camping.
There are only two ingredients you need for camp coffee: hot water and coffee grounds. The way you put those ingredients together; however, impacts not only the taste but how quickly you can get to sipping on that sweet cup of joe.
Let’s talk about the different methods you can use to make coffee while you’re camping.
The French press is a coffee brewing technique that involves immersion of the coffee grounds in hot water for a set period of time before pushing the grounds down through the water.
French press has a reputation for being a pretty fancy way to brew coffee. It’s also a great way to ensure you get a flavorful cup of coffee at the campsite. We used a French press on a recent camping trip and the speed and quality were amazing!
Here are a few great French press machines that are perfect to include in your camping packing list.
ESPRO Ultralight Travel Press Bottle – This French press is lightweight and compact, which is perfect for a camping trip where packing space is limited. Designed for individual use, it makes 12 ounces of coffee. Its double-insulated walls help coffee stay hot for hours, making it a perfect choice for anyone who plans to hit the hiking trail early.
AeroPress Go Portable Travel Coffee Press – This little piece of equipment is the Swiss army knife of camp coffee makers, and really packs a punch with its versatility. It makes 1–3 cups of hot coffee, espresso, or cold brew in as little as one minute.
If you aren’t sure you’ll have access to hot water or the ability to make a campfire, the AeroPress will ensure that you get your caffeine fix in the form of cold brew. Even people with a high standard for great-tasting espresso will agree that this coffee gadget wins in the flavor department!
Pour over coffee uses the drip or filter coffee brewing technique. This method of making campfire coffee helps you get your no-fuss hot cup of coffee in minutes.
Collapsible Coffee Dripper – For the camper who is backpacking or has limited space, this pour over method is a great option. Small enough to fit in a pocket, this percolator sits directly on top of your coffee mug of choice. Simply pop in a filter and some coffee grounds, pour boiling water slowly over the grounds, and enjoy!
All-in-One Pour Over Coffee Maker and Insulated Thermal Coffee Mug – If you’re looking for a pour over filter and mug combination, this travel coffee maker is a great option. It has a spill proof lid and comes with a brush for cleaning the reusable stainless steel filter.
A coffee percolator uses steam pressure to push water up through coffee grounds. The taste of percolated coffee varies quite a lot. The quality depends on the kind of coffee maker you use, as well as how course the grind is.
GSI Outdoors Stainless Percolator – This percolator comes in 3, 6, 9, or 12-cup sizes so you can choose whichever one will fit your camping party’s coffee needs. It’s made from stainless steel, so you don’t need to worry about it cracking under heat or when it’s jostled around while packed away.
Bialetti Express Moka Pot – For espresso-loving campers, the moka pot is capable of brewing a strong, flavorful, espresso-like coffee over the campfire. The moka pot comes in different sizes, so you can choose between 1, 6, 9 or 12 cups.
How to Make Coffee While Camping In a Group
Even if you aren’t a big coffee fan, when you go camping with a group, you are guaranteed to have people with you who will be itching for some coffee in the morning.
You know who’s not great to be on a camping trip with? A caffeine fiend who hasn’t gotten their fix. Here are a few options for the best way to brew coffee for a whole crew.
COLETTI Bozeman Coffee Pot – This percolator makes 9 cups of coffee, and is sure to be a crowd-pleaser at an affordable price point.
Big Joe Coffee – If you’re looking for a pour over coffee option for a group, this one is a good bet. The Big Joe makes up to 18 cups of coffee. Just bring a carafe or thermos big enough to hold it all!
Toddy – If you’re not sure whether you’ll have access to a campfire or boiling water, you can still use the Toddy to get your wilderness coffee fix. Use the Toddy to make iced coffee concentrate that will last you and your crew for days. If you’re on a long trip, the coffee concentrate lasts for up to two weeks when kept in a cooler.
Camping Coffee Packets
One of the easiest camping coffee hacks is embracing the instant coffee lifestyle. The beauty of instant coffee is that it comes pre-ground, pre-measured, and it’s drinkable within seconds of stirring it into hot water.
It’s an easy item to add to your camping food list.
Instant coffee has been around for ages. But over the past few years, some major coffee players have launched their own instant coffee product lines.
Consider testing out some instant coffee contenders to take on your next camping trip. We recommend Starbucks VIA, Nescafé, or Café Altura.
Maybe you already have some coffee beans at home and want to try making your own mix-in coffee packets. Here’s a recipe for making DIY instant coffee to bring along on your camping adventure.
DIY Coffee Bags for Camping
- Add your favorite coffee beans to the grinder and set it it to grind on the finest setting
- Pour the grinds over a super-fine strainer and sift into a bowl.
- Add the remaining grounds in the strainer back into the grinder and grind again, then add to the bowl.
- Put fine grounds into a plastic sealed bag of your choice, along with a teaspoon to measure when serving.
- To enjoy, add hot water to your coffee mug and start with 1 teaspoon of coffee. You can always add more to taste. Keep in mind: non-dissolved coffee grounds will settle to the bottom of your cup. Leave that last sip alone unless you want to chew your coffee, too!
- TIP: if you enjoy sweetener in your coffee, consider adding fine sugar, Splenda, or Truvia to the bag of grounds. That way it’s pre-mixed and ready to drink at the campsite!
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