Make Coffee While Camping: Best Way to Brew Camp Coffee in 2023

Brewing coffee while camping enhances the outdoor experience, providing a comforting ritual amid nature’s embrace. The aroma of freshly brewed coffee complements the crisp morning air, awakening the senses and setting the tone for an adventurous day. In this comprehensive guide, discover the best methods, tips, and tricks to make coffee while camping, elevating your outdoor escapades with the perfect cup of joe.

Make Coffee While Camping
Make Coffee While Camping

Selecting the Right Coffee Brewing Method

Before you embark on your camping adventure, you must decide which coffee brewing method suits your needs. Let’s explore a few options:

Instant Coffee

Instant coffee is the go-to choice for campers seeking convenience. It’s as simple as it gets – all you need is hot water and a packet of instant coffee. Here’s how to make it:

  • Boil water using your preferred method (campfire, portable camp stove, or electric kettle).
  • Open the instant coffee packet and add the desired amount to your camping cup or coffee mug.
  • Pour the hot water into your cup over the coffee granules.
  • Stir until the coffee is dissolved, and you’re ready to enjoy your hot cup.

While instant coffee is quick and hassle-free, it may not deliver the rich and nuanced flavors that other methods can provide. However, it’s an excellent option for those early mornings when you’re looking for a caffeine fix without the fuss.

French Press

For campers who appreciate a full-bodied and flavorful cup of coffee, the French press is an excellent choice. The process is straightforward, and the results are often worth the effort:

  • Boil water using your preferred camping method.
  • Add coarsely ground coffee beans to the French press (generally, use 1-2 tablespoons of coffee per 6 ounces of water).
  • Pour the hot water over the coffee grounds, ensuring they are fully saturated.
  • Stir the mixture gently and place the lid on the French press with the plunger pulled up.
  • Give the coffee four minutes or so to steep. The steeping time can be adjusted to your preferred strength.
  • To separate the coffee grounds from the liquid, gradually depress the plunger.
  • Pour your freshly brewed coffee into your camping cup or thermos, and enjoy the rich and aromatic flavors.

The French press method allows you to enjoy the natural oils and bold flavors of your chosen coffee beans. It’s a favorite among campers who savor a well-balanced and robust cup of Joe.


If you’re a camper who values precision and enjoys a coffee customized to your taste, the pour-over method is a great choice. While it requires a bit more patience and skill, the result is a cup of coffee that perfectly suits your preferences:

  • Boil water using your preferred camping method.
  • Place a paper coffee filter in your pour-over cone or holder.
  • Add finely ground coffee beans to the filter (typically, 1-2 tablespoons of coffee per cup of water).
  • Position the pour-over cone over your camping cup or thermos.
  • Pour the hot water over the coffee grinds slowly, moving in a circular motion from the center outward.
  • Let the coffee trickle into your cup via the filter.

The pour-over method offers complete control over the brewing process, allowing you to adjust variables like grind size, water temperature, and pouring technique to achieve your desired coffee flavor. It’s an excellent choice for campers who appreciate the art of coffee making.

With these three coffee brewing methods at your disposal, you can select the one that best aligns with your camping preferences, ensuring that your mornings in the great outdoors start with the perfect cup of coffee.

Essential Camping Coffee Equipment

To enjoy a delightful cup of coffee while camping, it’s crucial to have the right equipment on hand. Here’s a rundown of the essential camping coffee gear you’ll need to ensure your brew is as satisfying as the great outdoors around you.

Portable Coffee Makers

Investing in a portable coffee maker designed specifically for camping is the first step to a successful coffee experience. These devices are compact, lightweight, and engineered to withstand the challenges of outdoor adventures. Here are a few popular options:

  • AeroPress: This is a favorite among campers. It’s a compact and durable device that uses air pressure to extract flavor from coffee grounds, resulting in a clean and smooth cup of coffee.
  • Handpresso: If you’re an espresso lover, the Handpresso is a must-have. It’s a handheld espresso maker that allows you to enjoy an espresso even in the wilderness.
  • Single-Serve Coffee Makers: Some brands offer single-serve coffee makers designed for camping, ensuring a quick and easy brewing process.

The choice of your portable coffee maker largely depends on your preferences and the type of coffee you enjoy. Regardless of your choice, these devices are designed to be easy to clean and transport, making them ideal for outdoor enthusiasts.

Coffee Grinder

For the freshest coffee experience, a coffee grinder is a must. Pre-ground coffee can lose flavor and aroma over time, so grinding your beans just before brewing ensures a more robust and great coffee. Consider a manual coffee grinder for camping. They are portable, easy to use, and don’t require electricity, making them perfect for outdoor use.

When using a grinder, it’s essential to choose the right grind size that matches your brewing method. For example, a coarser grind works well with a French press, while a finer grind is suitable for espresso or pour-over.

Coffee Filters

To ensure your camping coffee is free from grounds and sediment, it’s advisable to bring along some coffee filters. You have a couple of options:

  • Paper Filters: These are disposable and easy to use. Place one in your pour-over cone or portable coffee maker to catch the coffee grounds.
  • Reusable Metal Filters: Environmentally conscious campers may prefer reusable metal filters. These are easy to clean and can be used multiple times, reducing waste.

Remember to pack an adequate supply of filters based on the number of coffee servings you plan to make during your camping trip. Using the right filter ensures a smooth and clean cup of coffee.

With the proper camping coffee equipment in your backpack, you’ll be well-prepared to brew your favorite coffee in the great outdoors. Whether you prefer a quick cup of instant coffee or a more elaborate pour-over experience, having the right gear ensures your camping mornings start with the perfect brew.

How to Boil Water for Coffee while Camping

To brew coffee, you’ll need hot water. Here are a few ways to achieve that while camping:


Boiling water over a campfire adds a rustic touch to your coffee-making process. Just be patient and keep an eye on the water’s temperature. To do this, follow these steps:

  • Build a campfire and let it burn until you have enough hot coals.
  • Hang a kettle or coffee pot over the coals using a tripod or grate.
  • Wait for the water to boil, and then you’re ready to brew your coffee.

Portable Stove

A portable stove is a quick and convenient way to boil water for your coffee. Pack the necessary fuel and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe and efficient use.

Electric Kettle

If you can access electricity at your campsite, an electric kettle is the fastest way to get hot water. It’s a simple and efficient choice, allowing you to enjoy your coffee without waiting too long for the water to boil.

Brewing the Perfect Coffee Mug

Now that you have the equipment and hot water, it’s time to brew the perfect cup:

Brewing Parameters

Follow the recommended coffee-to-water ratio and steeping time for your chosen method. It’s crucial for a balanced and flavorful brew. Here are some general guidelines:

  • Instant Coffee: Observe the guidelines provided on the packaging.
  • French Press: Use 1-2 tablespoons of coffee per 6 ounces of water and steep for about four minutes.
  • Pour-Over: Use 1-2 tablespoons of coffee per 6 ounces of water and adjust the steeping time to your taste.

Flavor Enhancements

Add a pinch of cinnamon, a dash of cocoa, or a splash of flavored syrup to elevate your camping coffee. These small additions can create a delightful twist to your brew and make your outdoor coffee experience even more enjoyable.

Enjoying Your Campfire Coffee

The beauty of camping coffee is not just in the taste but also in the experience. Sip your coffee while:

Scenic Sips

Enjoying the breathtaking views and serene ambiance of your campsite. There’s something genuinely magical about savoring your coffee while surrounded by the wonders of nature.

Complementing Snacks

Pairing your coffee with some campfire-cooked breakfast or a sweet treat. Combining a warm cup of coffee and a delicious snack can be the perfect start to your day.

Cleaning Up After

Properly dispose of used coffee grounds and filters to leave no trace in the wilderness. Keep your campsite clean and respect nature. Pack all your used coffee-related items and dispose of them in designated waste areas.


In the world of camping, making coffee is an art. With the right equipment, brewing method, and a beautiful natural backdrop, you can create the perfect cup of coffee to start your day in the great outdoors. So, next time you’re camping, don’t forget to savor the magic of a well-brewed cup of coffee. It’s a simple pleasure that can elevate your outdoor experience.


1. Can I make camp coffee without a campfire or electricity?

Yes, you can use a portable stove or an electric kettle to boil water for your coffee. Both options are convenient and efficient for camping.

2. What’s the best coffee-to-water ratio for camping coffee?

A general rule of thumb is 1 to 2 tablespoons of coffee per 6 ounces of water, but you can adjust it to your taste. Experiment to find the perfect balance that suits your preferences.

3. How can I keep my coffee hot while camping?

Invest in a good-quality insulated travel mug to keep your coffee hot for hours. These mugs are designed to maintain the temperature of your beverage, ensuring you can enjoy your coffee at your leisure.

4. Is it possible to grind coffee beans while camping?

Yes, a manual coffee grinder is a portable and convenient option for grinding coffee beans. It’s a practical choice for campers who want to enjoy the freshest coffee possible.

5. Can I use regular coffee filters while camping?

Yes, you can use regular paper filters, or you can opt for reusable metal filters for a more eco-friendly choice. The choice of filter depends on your preferences and environmental concerns.

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