We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission.

Camping offers unique opportunities, such as hearing nature’s sounds while drifting off to sleep and reconnecting with the outdoors. However, if there’s one thing that many people look forward to while roughing it, it’s cooking over an open (yet still properly contained) fire. Although it’s unfamiliar to some, you can learn to ease around a campfire like you would in the kitchen. It’s simple to become efficient in no time when armed with the right gear and a bit of knowledge.

Although some cooking supplies are tailored for on-the-go, you may be surprised at what you already have in your kitchen to take along. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting, here are 12 kitchen essentials you need to take to your campsite. Bonus tip: planning your meals pre-trip will save time and help you curate a personalized kitchen packing list.

2. Lighter or Matches (and Fire Safety Supplies)

Once you arrive at your site, you will need a way to light your campfire. Therefore, you’ll have to secure fuel — most likely logs — and then start your fire. Although some may want to break out their skills from a past life as a scout, it’s best to take along a lighter or matches to do the trick quickly. Another campsite essential is a fire extinguisher or fire blanket to quickly put out wayward flames. Brush up on your fire safety skills before heading to camp, and keep the phone number of the local ranger, campsite manager, or fire marshal on hand if you have any questions.

7. Basic Kitchen Utensils

Of course, this depends on what you want to cook while you’re at your campsite. If your mornings entail making eggs and bacon, you’ll need a pan-safe spatula and whisk. For those that choose to grill steaks, metal tongs and a sturdy flipping tool are in order. When planning your meals ahead of time, think about what utensils are required. If you need them to make the same meal in your home, chances are you’ll need them camping, too.

Ideally, you should have one mess kit per person. Either make your kits at home or purchase pre-made sets. Include a plate, cup, bowl, and flatware in each kit. Ideally, pieces should be sturdy and not made out of non-breakable materials, such as plastic or silicone. If you want to delegate chores, you can put each person in charge of keeping track of and cleaning their mess kit.