How do you take your coffee (camping)?

How do you take your coffee (camping)?

Camping doesn’t quite feel complete without a good cup of coffee to start the day. It doesn’t matter if you’ll be enjoying a slow, relaxing morning or gearing up for a big adventure, nothing beats a strong cup of joe. There may be more options than you think for crafting your perfect cup of coffee while on the road, whether you have full access to power and appliances or are dry camping with limited resources. If you’ve never put much thought into your coffee options while in your RV, it may be time to reconsider!

Heating Methods

In an RV, you typically have access to appliances you normally wouldn’t have while camping. Having access to things like a stove and refrigerator really opens up possibilities for the type of food and drink you can bring along on your camping trips, including coffee! Also, the amount of storage and cargo space that is available allows you to carry more than just the bare necessities with you. You may even be able to bring a full-size espresso machine, but if not, there are still plenty of options.


Being able to bring your kitchen with you on the road is a major perk of living the RV lifestyle. The stovetop in your RV is likely not much different than the stovetop in your house, except in size. RVs typically have either propane gas or electric stovetops, both of which will easily allow you to boil up some water for whatever brewing method you choose.

Induction Burner

Induction Stove Function Chart

Induction burners are becoming increasingly popular, especially in RVs. Range units are available, like the one here, but countertop plates are also popular. With induction cooking, a magnetic field is created by an electric current, which works to heat up compatible cookware almost instantly. Like everything, induction burners have their pros and cons.


Safety - Induction cooking top surface does not get hot to the touch

Energy Efficiency - Induction burners use less energy than gas and electric burners

Time - Induction is the quickest cooking option, you can boil water in about 2 minutes or less


Specificity - Induction burners require cookware that is made from magnetic-based materials, such as cast iron, magnetic stainless steel, or metal clad. Most cookware will specify if it is induction compatible.

Cost - Since induction burners are a relatively new cooking method to the market, they can sometimes be more expensive compared to traditional options. If you need to buy all new cookware that is compatible, this can raise the overall cost as well.

Cold Brew

If you have access to a refrigerator for cold storage, why not make a nice, smooth batch of cold brew coffee? Making cold brew coffee is incredibly easy to do! All you need is coarsely ground coffee, purified water, a jar with a lid, a fine strainer, and a coffee filter. If you’re looking for some guidelines, check out this quick and easy recipe.

Teapot Over A Campfire


If you’re dry camping, or simply looking for a more rustic experience while in your RV, try cooking over a campfire! Nothing says “leisurely morning” like building a campfire to heat up your coffee and cook up your breakfast. If you go this route, keep in mind that patience is a virtue!

Brewing Equipment

How you choose to boil, or not boil, your water is only one aspect of crafting your perfect cup of coffee on the road. Next, you will need to determine which brewing method and equipment you prefer.

Electric Coffee Maker

While this method probably doesn’t need much of an introduction, having an RV allows you to bring your favorite electric coffee maker on the road with you if you want. These options may take up a bit of space and more than their fair share of electricity, but if you are hooked up to shore power and have the space then go for it! 

Pouring A Cup Of Coffee

Pour-Over Coffee

Pour-over coffee may look simple, but this method requires careful timing, precise temperature, and consistent pouring to achieve a tasty brew. If you can fit a thermometer and food scale into your kitchen space, your pour-over coffee will benefit greatly. Also, a special pour-over kettle spout is expected to be used for this technique. For a quick read on the science behind the pour-over technique plus some brewing tips, check out this how-to article.

French Press Coffee

If pour-over coffee is too finicky and tests your patience, a French press can provide a similar taste but be more forgiving in the brewing process. You are still hand-crafting coffee but the risk of over-extracting the beans and creating a bitter drink goes down. If you are a bit of a nerd like me, the science behind a good cup of coffee is really interesting to learn about and a French press coffee maker allows you to experiment with water temperature, brew time, and coffee strength until you are able to make the perfect cup!

Cold Brew Pitcher

To make cold brew coffee, all you really need is a mason jar and a strainer but if you make cold brew often, you may want to invest in a cold brew coffee pitcher. This will allow you to make larger batches at a time and usually doesn’t require any additional filtering. I love the taste of cold brew, and being able to pull my coffee out of the fridge and pour a glass without any additional work is a major perk.

Percolator Over CampfirePercolator

Portable coffee percolators have long been used by campers and outdoor enthusiasts, and still are. Truly a time-tested method, coffee percolators are simple, light-weight, and perfect for camping. A coffee percolator consists of a covered grounds basket held near the top of a closed kettle filled with water. There is a bit of technique involved though so if you’ve never made coffee using this method before, check out this blog article which goes more in-depth about camping coffee percolators.

Don’t forget the Coffee!

Without quality coffee grounds, all the subtleties between heating methods and brewing techniques won’t really matter. There are so many different roasting styles, flavor profiles, and unique blends in the world of coffee that there is no way to say which is the best of the best. However, one thing is certain - proper storage of your coffee grounds or beans is key to maintaining freshness. Storing your coffee in an airtight container will help to keep your coffee fresh longer. 

Next time you’re getting ready for an RV trip, think about how much better each day would be if it started with a delicious cup of coffee!

Does your coffee routine depend on whether you are at home or on the road? Do you have any product suggestions for those looking to step up their coffee game? Let's talk about it in the comments!

Jun 13th 2022 Molly Muhs

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