One of the fabulous benefits of living in a van is having the ability to cook anywhere and anytime you want. The right kitchen essentials can make or break this experience. Since there is limited space for storage, every item you bring should serve a purpose and should be used frequently. We created a list of our favorite and most useful kitchen must haves for van life.
- Camp Chef Everest Stove: If you choose not to have a built in stove in your build or are in the market for a portable stove to use while camping look no further. The Everest is a two burner stove that runs off propane. One great thing about this product is that it has barriers on each side to block the wind which is perfect if you enjoy cooking outside. It also gets hot in a matter of seconds and the fact that you can cook on both burners at the same time is a huge advantage and time saver. In our van we chose to forego a built in stove to save counter space and we use this for cooking every day. It is small and easy to store and when we are ready to cook we can set it up in less than two minutes.
- Collapsible food storage containers: These are an absolute game changer when you are living in a small space and have a smaller fridge. When not in use, these containers collapse and take up no room in a cabinet. If you like to meal prep and make food ahead of time but don’t want to sacrifice precious space in the fridge these are perfect. They are made of silicone so they bend and flex even when they are full.
- Magnetic spice rack: We have this magnetic spice rack and love it. It saves us room in our cabinets and the spices attach directly to the fridge so they are easily accessible.
- Stasher Bags: Another great option for food storage. Stasher bags are reusable silicone food bags. They are a great option if you want to reduce plastic bag use and they take up little to no space. There are also several different size and color options to choose from.
- Jet Boil: the Jet Boil gives you hot water in seconds. It is perfect for boiling water for coffee, tea, and oatmeal.
- Aeropress: After being used to a standard coffee pot pre van life, this press style coffee maker was a pleasant surprise. The Aeropress is lightweight and easy to use which is why we love it so much. It also makes a really smooth cup of coffee and you have the option to make espresso style or a standard coffee. Its also very easy to clean and doesn’t leave you with a mess.
- Plastic cutting boards: These boards are great because they come in a set of three and in three different colors so you can use them for separate cutting purposes (meat, veggies, ect.). They are also thin and plastic so they won’t bang around in the cabinet. Although they are thin they are durable and have held up really well with a lot of use.
- Reusable water bottle and coffee mug: Hydroflask is our go to for both of these items. We have been using this brand for years and it has yet to disappoint. Our cold drinks are kept cold in the 40 oz wide mouth bottle and for hot drinks we have the 12 oz travel coffee mug.
- Bamboo Silverware: Bamboo and wooden silverware is a great choice because it prevents all of the clanging and noise associated with regular utensils. We only have four forks and two spoons in the van and have never felt like we needed more.
We use all of these items almost daily and they have made cooking in a small space much easier. If you have any essentials to add drop them in the comments below!
If you enjoyed this post you should check out our Vanlife Parking Guide here: https://we-the-wanderers.com/2020/02/25/vanlife-parking-guide/
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