> A Melting Pot of How To: August 2017

Monday, August 28, 2017

How to Bake Without an Oven

Oven Not Working, No Oven, Oh No!

Have you ever wondered "How can I bake without an oven?" Maybe your oven broke, you were experiencing an electrical outage, or you were out of propane, but you had a dire need to bake.  When I started living off grid a few years back, I knew my family and I would start to get bored of the same old stove top cooked meals. I had to ask myself that very question.  Needless to say, if you haven't had to ask yourself "How can I bake with no oven?", Murphy's law will most likely force you to ask yourself on a night you have your meal ready for the baking and everyone's hungrily waiting.  With that said I would like to explore with you the options I have found available on the market as well as DIY ideas you can use to bake without a conventional oven.
Fresh bread baked without an oven
Freshly baked
without an oven!

12 Ways to Bake Without an Oven

 If you have a dutch oven and your meal fits inside it you can go about baking without an oven pretty easily as was done back in the Pioneer age, or on top of the stove if your stove top is usable. If you have electricity available you can use a slow cooker, otherwise a pressure cooker, or your stove top could also do the job of baking without an oven. However not everyone has all the cooking and baking tools available, I being one to own neither a pressure cooker or Dutch oven. I know, and I call myself a homesteader / off gridder. However, a good Homesteader learns how to make do with what is available right?

Portable Ovens Available on the Market

 Now of course if you don't have electricity or gas for your stove top the options above are just about useless, minus the Dutch oven, so it's good to know there are other options to bake without an oven. Some of the options such as a Global Sun Oven will require some investment and of course certain fuels to be readily available. There is also the Herc Tea Light oven and with the XXL version you can bake up to three loaves of bread using tea light candles. On eBay if you go looking for you can find an oven that utilizes a propane camping stove to bake goods in the oven below. However an even more budget-friendly option is the Coleman camping oven. The only main issue I as an indulger of baked goods and baking sees is the size. That's why you're still reading isn't it? You're not happy with the size either. I know I just gave all you guys out there the right to say "I knew it, size does matter." When it comes to baking, it does.

Make Your Own Oven!

 I have found that two roasting pans or steam table pans that are at least 4 inches deep can make a great oven that you can place on a camping stove, stove top, wood burning stove, or brick stove. Thus when you have no sun, electricity, or gas, you can bake with no oven, as long as you have a way to make a fire underneath the pans. What I did was place one pan right side up, placed a metal rack inside, then placed the other pan upside down on top of the first pan. Next you just heat up the pans and you can bake to your hearts desire. Of course certain baked goods require the typical baking hacks you would use in a conventional oven to achieve desired results as well as getting to know how the oven bakes with different types and levels of heat sources underneath will be a key to getting your desired results. This took me a bit of trial and err.

Getting the Supplies for the Pan Oven

 If you don't have 2 deep roast pans or steam table pans, stores such as the Dollar General or Family Dollar carry roast pans for pretty cheap. You can also check your local thrift stores, schools, and restaurants as they may discard steam table pans just because they've been deemed to old to use. Don't forget to pick up a couple of metal racks with different heights to fit inside your oven to provide you with different shelf heights.

DIY Cardboard Box Oven

 Another DIY idea to bake without an oven you can try is the cardboard box oven idea. You cover a box with aluminium foil, with a flat heat resistant surface large enough for the box to sit on, place 4 cans of the same size, a metal rack to rest on the cans, and hot coals underneath the rack enclosed by the box. Voila you have a temporary oven ready for baking. For more indepth details about the cardboard box oven idea check it out here.

DIY Greenhouse Panel Sun Oven

Building your own sun oven is also another do it yourself solution allowing you to bake with no conventional oven. I have 2 DIY sun oven ideas that are pretty easy to do, however one will cost more to make, how much more will depend on whether you can acquire the needed materials for cheap. This DIY sun oven idea utilizes a south facing window and greenhouse panels hot glued together to form a box on the outside of the window supported with a wooden support base. Allowing you access to the sun oven through the window, you can now be inside baking in a sun oven.

DIY Cardboard Box Sun Oven

 The other do it yourself sun oven idea utilizes a cardboard box with the inside (flaps to open end of box included) covered in aluminum foil making sure flaps can be adjusted to direct sunlight, and the outside painted / covered with black construction paper. Make a door to allow and trap sunlight in using plastic wrap and scraps of cardboard as the frame for the door and there you have made a sun oven with items you can find around your house or for really cheap.

Start Baking With No Oven Today!

 You never know when you will need these ideas on how to bake without an oven as with any emergency situation, baking emergencies will usually catch you off guard. So start utilizing at least some of these ideas to baking without an oven today to give yourself time to get used to the way your new unconventional oven bakes. 

Please let me know how these ideas work for you or if you have any unconventional oven ideas of your own to share in the comments below and don't forget to rate this article with a thumbs to help others trying to find helpful information on the subject. Thank you for reading.