Roughing it in the woods for a couple of days on a camping trip doesn’t mean that you have to suffer through your adventure without drinking your morning coffee—far from it! There are many surprisingly simple ways to make your coffee even when you're out camping. Please note when we say camping, we aren't talking about an excursion with all of the amenities known as “glamping“.
There are actually a few easy ways to make coffee while camping or on the trail. You will only need three items to make it work:
- First, and most importantly, you will need your favorite ground coffee.
- The second crucial item will be your favorite cup!
- The third item you will need is a pot for boiling water
With these three items, you won’t have to miss out on being able to enjoy a cup of Joe while soaking in the outdoor scenery. What’s more, your camping companions will thank you when they wake up to the smell of coffee you’ve freshly brewed for them! Here are three tried and true methods for making coffee while camping.
To make cowboy coffee, first put one generous, heaping tablespoon of ground coffee for each 10-ounce cup you want to make directly into your metal pot. For boiling water, you can use a metal coffee pot, but many campers use boiler pots instead, which are often lighter and more compact. Spoon your coffee into the pot first, then add the desired amount of water. Stir well so the floating grounds are fully drenched, then heat the pot. Just before the water comes to a full, rolling boil, remove it from the heat and give it a good stir. Then allow it to sit for two or three minutes, keeping it warm but not boiling. Then stir it again, remove it from the heat, and let it sit for another two minutes. The coffee grounds should sink to the bottom of the pot allowing you to pour just the good stuff into your cup. If not, the grounds haven't settled try sprinkling in a little cold water. If you want a stronger and heartier brew, instead of removing the coffee from the heat before it boils, try boiling it for five or six minutes—that’s the way old-time cowboys made it which is why cowboy coffee is known to be extra dark, strong, and bold. Now, pour and enjoy!
Coffee by the cup
Pour one generous, heaping tablespoon of ground coffee into your ten-ounce cup. Boil water separately in your boiling pan or coffee pot, let the water cool for a few seconds, then pour it over the ground coffee in your cup. Cover the cup with a napkin or the lid of the boiler plate or coffee pot, and let it steep for about five minutes. Covering it will help the coffee retain its heat while it steeps. After the coffee has steeped, uncover, drink, and enjoy.
For some the thought of instant coffee may be repulsive. But it's worth noting that instant coffee has come a very long way over the years. You can now even buy “specialty instant coffee” (high-end gourmet coffee that's crystallized). For the uncompromising coffee lover, we recommend Sudden Coffee. If you're interested in learning more about specialty instant coffee or crystallized coffee, check out our Sudden Coffee review. There are a number of instant coffees on the market, any of which will help you make a quick cup without having to worry about cleaning up and disposing of coffee grounds. If you choose to make instant coffee, just boil your water, pour it into your coffee cup, add the powdered instant coffee, stir well until the powder dissolves, and enjoy.
The Aeropress (Device required)
No article on making coffee while camping would be complete without the Aeropress making the list. This durable portable coffee maker is wildly popular and for good reason. Although it can take up some of your precious backpack space, the device makes a very strong and most importantly, clean cup of coffee.
As an added bonus, if espresso is your thing, you may want to check out the Simpresso portable espresso maker which thoroughly impressed here at Best Quality Coffee. We field tested in two different scenarios and it performed “simpressively” 🙂 It's a lightweight, durable, and high-performing product that allows you to make an authentic espresso on the go. For more information, check out our article on portable espresso makers for camping.
Once again , going camping clearly doesn't mean you have to go without coffee. Try these above suggestions on how to make coffee while camping and you'll be ready to hit the trail bright-eyed and bushy-tailed!