One of the best ways to enjoy the outdoors is to go camping. Many people actively set time around their busy schedules to head out to the backcountry. After a great night of sleeping under the stars, mornings can get a bit chilly.
A warm cup of coffee will warm you up and get you ready to take on the day. There are several options available to the camper who wants to make a smooth cup of joe. Some important things to have are clean water and coffee grounds and a coffee maker.
Best Ways To Brew Camp Coffee
1. Coffee Like a Cowboy
One of the simplest ways for making coffee while camping is to do it cowboy style. If you are a minimalist and prefer carrying as few items as possible, you will need a kettle that you can place over your fire.
Fill it with water and wait for it to boil. Remove the kettle from the fire and wait a few minutes for the water to cool down. Then take two teaspoonfuls of your ground coffee, add to the water, and stir. You will likely see the foam.
Next wait for the ground coffee to settle to the bottom of the kettle and after a minute or two, pour the coffee into a mug and enjoy.
You might be a minimalist but prefer better-tasting coffee than cowboy coffee. In such a case, you may need an enamel percolator.
The percolator works interestingly. Once you place it on your campfire, the water heats up and rises a tube. It then starts to trickle over your coffee grounds and then flows back into the kettle.
After a few minutes, the water will be turned brown and is now fresh coffee. To use the enamel percolator, you will begin by taking off the lid and removing the basket and tube. Put water to the kettle, add two teaspoons of ground coffee in the basket and then put the tube and basket back in place.
Close the lid and place the percolator on the campfire. Leave the kettle on the fire for ten minutes and then remove it and let it sit for two minutes. It is now ready to be served.
3. Instant Coffee
One of the easiest and fastest ways for making coffee while camping is using coffee bags which you can toss in your mug of hot water. The tools you will need are a kettle to boil your water and a cup to pour the water into.
Add clean water to a kettle and place it on your campfire. For the minimalist, this is another great way to get your daily dose of java and get moving. Once the water has boiled, remove the kettle and give it some time to stop sizzling.
Then simply pour the water into your mug and add a bag of ground coffee.
4. Using a Camping Drip Coffee Maker
The camping drip coffee maker is similar to your home drip electric coffee maker. The main difference is that it’s designed to sit on a stove. This may bring challenges when using an open fire.
If you are wondering how to make coffee while camping using a drip coffee maker, open the back reservoir and add your water. At the front is a filter-basket where you will add your ground coffee. You will also need a camping stove. This is not a minimalist way to make coffee.
Place the camping drip coffee maker on the camping stove and turn on the stove. After about 10 minutes, you will have enough coffee for several people.
5. French Press Coffee
Some people believe the French press to be the best way of making coffee while camping. Camping gear and utilities are expected to be rugged, not a fancy stainless steel tool like a French press. However, there are plenty of manufacturers that make French presses, especially for camping.
Start by adding a tablespoon of ground coffee per cup. Next, boil water and let it cool down. Pour half a cup of water inside the press and give the coffee a minute to bloom. You can now add the rest of the water into the French press.
Give the coffee 3 more minutes to steep. However, if you want your coffee strong you can let it steep for a few more minutes. Lastly, press the plunger as far down as it can go. Now you can pour the coffee into your mug and enjoy it.
6. The Single Serve Filter
The single-serve filter can provide you with some great tasting coffee with very little hassle. It is designed to easily rest on your mug and will filter your coffee without falling in.
Brewing coffee using the single-serve filter utilizes the pour-over method. Simply put water in your kettle and place it on top of the campfire to boil. Once boiled let it cool for 30 seconds as you add the ground coffee to the filter.
Then take the water and pour it gently on the ground coffee. Ensure you pour the water slowly to give the coffee the chance to bloom. You can make the coffee stronger by squeezing the remaining oils and liquid into the cup.
7. The Submersible Filter Cup
This is another equally simple method of quickly brewing your morning cup of coffee and is similar to the single-serve filter method in that it uses the pour-over method. However, in this case, the filter will be fully submerged in the water.
To prepare your coffee you will start by adding the coffee grounds into the filter cup. Next, close the lid and put it inside your mug. Then take your hot water and pour it over the grounds. Ensure it is saturated. Remember to always pour the water slowly to allow the coffee to bloom before resuming to add more water.
What remains is to pull out your filter and drink your mug of coffee.
8. Silicone Collapsible Filter Cone
Another quick way to brew a delightful cup of coffee when you are out camping is using the silicon filter cone. It is simple to use and once having done its job it can be collapsed and packed in your backpack without consuming too much space.
If you want to know how to make coffee while camping using a collapsible filter cone, simply take it out, but either a number 2 or a number 4 coffee filter on its top opening, and place the bottom opening on the top of the mug. Add coffee grounds. Assuming you have boiled your water, add a little to the coffee grounds to saturate them, allow the coffee to bloom then add the rest of the water.
One of the main benefits of using the collapsible filter cone is that unlike other materials, it doesn’t leave any chemical traces on the coffee. It is also durable and the constant folding and unfolding will not cause it to break.
9. The Travel Mug
This coffee maker mug could be the simplest way to make your coffee yet. The travel mug has a double layer with a stainless-steel interior. The lid closes shut which keeps your coffee hot for a long time. And the great part is that it comes with its filter.
Start by boiling water on the campfire. Then open the coffee mug lid and add the coffee grounds inside the filter. Add a bit of boiling water to soak the grounds and allow the coffee to bloom. Then add the rest of the water.
The last step is to remove the filter from the mug and you are ready to enjoy your sweet cup of coffee. The travel mug has a durable construction and will not damage even while being constantly battered by your other equipment making it ideal for campers.
10. Coffee with AeroPress
The AeroPress is not the most compact coffee-making solution on this list but its main advantage is that it can make multiple cups of coffee at once. This is great if you are camping with your buddies.
It is also made from durable plastic that will not break easily and is completely safe to use. To make your morning cup of coffee, simply separate the top tube from the bottom cap and add a filter to the bottom cap.
Next, tighten the cap to the press. Add your coffee grounds into the chamber or the larger tube on top. The next step will be to set it on your cup. Add your boiled water to the top chamber. Stir a bit and let the grounds soak before adding more water.
Take the plunger and insert it inside the chamber and push it down until you cannot press anymore. Ensure that you have a mug that has a stable bottom and is sturdy. This will prevent it from tipping over and pouring your coffee as you press.
11. The Moka Pot
Many people often get confused about how to make coffee using a Moka pot. However, it makes a super-strong cup of coffee and the great thing is that it can be used on a stove.
The main difference in the design of Moka pots is with the handles. Different manufacturers have different handle designs. There are two main challenges with the handles. Plastics will melt over the heat while metal simply gets too hot to touch.
One of the best designs with the Moka pot is the metal filter that is built permanently inside the pot. You will not need to worry about not enjoying a delicious cup of coffee simply because you forgot to carry the paper filter when you went out camping. The downside is that the pot feels a bit heavy due to all the metal parts.
While the Moka pot is still an option for backpackers, its heavy construction makes it a bit difficult to carry around. There is always the choice of a smaller Moka pot. Campers who have their cars will find the Moka pot quite convenient.
12. The Bripe
This coffee-making equipment looks as weird as its name. However, it offers a simple solution for making coffee while camping.
Its design looks as if a brass teacup and a tobacco pipe were brought together to make the bripe. However, it works by filling the cup with a pipe-like function. If you want a strong cup of coffee in the morning, the bripe is an effective tool to achieve this.
To use the bripe, mix the grounds and water into the cup. Then take the bripe and put it on top of the campfire or the stove. Within a few minutes, the mixture of coffee grounds and water will form a strong espresso.
The bripe has an inbuilt thermometer and offers a complete solution to making coffee while camping. Check this to be able to tell when the temperature of the coffee is ideal for drinking.
When the coffee is drinkable, you will use the pipe to sip that caffeine fix.
Adding the Milk
Some people are not big fans of black coffee. Understandably, you want to add milk to turn that cup of coffee into a cappuccino or latte.
But campers are faced with the challenge of where to source the milk. One method is to carry powdered milk. It may not provide you with that original taste of milk but it’s one option for campers.
Then there is coconut oil. While it is not milk, it can make black coffee creamier. The third option is using long-life milk. This is better than the last two options and can bring you the closest to that latté taste.
Lastly, you can pack your fresh milk when camping. It provides campers with the most natural solution for adding milk to coffee. However, you need to know how to store it correctly so it doesn’t go bad.
A milk frother is a great choice especially when its battery operated and cheap to acquire. If you do not mind spending a bit more for your coffee needs, then there is the option of a stovetop cappuccino steamer. It offers the best way to froth your milk when camping providing you with a great-tasting cup of coffee.
Some Useful Accessories to Have
Even the minimalist will agree that bringing along some additions and accessories can make brewing coffee when camping all the more fun.
Let’s consider a few accessories to include in your backpack when heading out into the woods.
A miniature scale can make the life of any camper much easier especially when brewing your morning cup fop java. One of the main functions is to provide you with a good ratio between your ground coffee and the water. This will ensure you will not waste any of the ground coffee that you carried.
Nothing beats the taste of freshly ground coffee beans and a manual burr grinder is an excellent tool to grind your coffee. You can find these in any design, shape, and size and for the minimalist who wants to keep things lightweight, some models are small enough for your backpack.
Campers can benefit from having an outdoor camping kit containing everything they need to make a great cup of coffee such as an AeroPress, mugs, as well as a small burr grinder.
You will need to ensure that you have the right ingredients and equipment before heading out. Have a list of what you think you will need and shop for these things before going on a camping trip.
Second, you will also need to put your coffee needs into consideration. Do you prefer black coffee or is a stronger dose of espresso what you need for your mornings?
When packing your necessities ensure that you put the coffee equipment together. This will make it easier to find in the morning. This is especially so with equipment that features more parts as they can be hard to find with all the other stuff in the backpack.
There is one universal requirement when brewing your coffee regardless of the method you choose and that is water. You will need to have a close source of water. You can either light a fire or use a camping stove. If you are going to source the water from a nearby river or stream, make sure you leave it boiling for at least a minute. This ensures that all the harmful bacteria that could be in the water are destroyed.
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There are plenty of ways to have your morning fix of caffeine and the one you choose will depend on your preferred method and situation. From simple inexpensive methods such as the single-serve filter to the fancier French press, you are simply spoilt for choice.
Spending time in the woods can give you a stiff back and a slow morning but knowing that you have a quick and easy way to get your morning cup of coffee can add a bit of warmth to any cold morning.