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Beginner Skills

Cheap Camping Tools For Eating

How to complete your backcountry kitchen for $5 or less.

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Need utensils to go with your brand-new pots and pans? Here are a few tips for scavenging inexpensive items from your kitchen cupboard and local convenience stores.

Cup: That old plastic cup from the company picnic will do, or buy an insulated mug at most convenience stores. Ultracheap, ultralight option: Make a margarine or yogurt tub do double duty as a cup and bowl.

Bowl: Use a margarine tub, Tupperware container, mug, or small Lexan bowl, available from your local outfitter for about $3.

Plate: Eat off a pot lid, Frisbee, or plastic picnic plate. If you’re alone or with a partner scoop out of the pot, or use dehydrated-food pouches.

Utensils: Lexan utensils are light and inexpensive (less than a buck at most outdoors stores). Or just grab a teaspoon from your silverware drawer. Forgot utensils? Take a couple of plastic spoons from a fast-food joint. Unless you’re packing steaks, a spoon is the only utensil most backpacking meals require.