Can You Use a Pressure Cooker While Camping?

You can use a pressure cooker to cook delicious meals while camping. Pressure cookers are great for camping because they cook more quickly- which uses less fuel- and need less water. There are pressure cookers made specifically for camping.

Are you on the fence as to whether or not you should get a pressure cooker for that next camping trip? Let this article convince you!

Why use a pressure cooker while camping?

Using a pressure cooker lets you cook delicious meals while using less time, fuel, and liquid. 

There are pressure cookers specifically designed for camping that are small enough to fit on a camp stove and sturdy enough to withstand the elements.

You’ll probably crave heartwarming meals like chili or brisket when you’re camping. Without a pressure cooker it takes hours to make these meals. Those hours can add up into dollar signs quickly when you consider fuel usage.

But now you can go to bed at a decent time and save money on fuel if you use a pressure cooker instead.

Even just cooking rice is reduced from 30 minutes to 5 minutes by using a pressure cooker!

You’ll also need a lot less liquid. Liquid is acquired two ways while camping: either you bring it with you or you source and purify it. Either way it is heavy and cumbersome. Using a pressure cooker can make a huge difference when you only need a little bit of liquid.

How does a pressure cooker work?

A pressure cooker is like a normal pot but it has a lid that seals tight using a rubber gasket. It raises the temperature of boiling water which speeds up the amount of time it takes to steam, braise, or boil things. 

Once the lid is locked and the cooker is on, steam will develop in the pot and not be able to escape. The trapped steam increases the psi inside the cooker by 15 psi.

At that higher pressure, water’s boiling point is increased from 212 degrees F to 250 degrees F. Since the water has a higher boiling point, the food cooks faster. 

Once the pressure cooker has gotten to its full pressure, a release valve will open to regulate the steam and maintain the right temperature.

What are the pros and cons of using a pressure cooker?

Pressure cookers cook food roughly 30% faster than other methods. They also can use between 50% and 75% less energy because they are cooking for shorter amounts of time.

In addition, food that is pressure cooked retains more flavor, minerals, and vitamins than food that is boiled because pressure cookers use less water. 

Pressure cookers are very useful when you’re cooking at higher altitudes, as you might be when you’re camping. This is because when elevation increases the atmospheric pressure will decrease which causes water to boil at a lower temperature. This makes cooking take longer. Pressure cookers speed up the cooking process.

However, pressure cookers take some time to get used to. One thing to adjust to is that you need less liquid to cook things because there is almost no evaporation. However, if you don’t use enough liquid then the bottom of the cooker will scorch.

It is also harder to check if something is done. The lid is locked when it’s at full pressure and you need to release all the pressure before the lid will lift. So you have to wait for the pressure to release, and then if the food isn’t cooked, you have to wait for it to build back up.

Lastly, food can overcook easily even if it’s left in for just a few too many minutes.

What are some pressure cooker meals for camping?

Here are three pressure cooker meals that you can use while camping, each increasing in difficulty.

Hard boiled eggs

  1. Insert 8-12 eggs with 1 cup of water.
  2. Cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Put eggs in cold water until cooled down.

Hot wings

  1. Sprinkle chicken wings with salt and pepper.
  2. Pour water into the pressure cooker liner and add the trivet.
  3. Put the chicken wings on top of the trivet.
  4. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes.
  5. Toss with buffalo wing sauce.

Pulled pork sandwiches

  1. Sear the pork shoulder butt on all sides.
  2. Add apple cider to just below the fill line.
  3. Top with salt, paprika, cumin and garlic.
  4. Put onions around the pork shoulder butt.
  5. Cook for 2 hours.
  6. Shred the pork in the pressure cooker.
  7. Cook for another hour.
  8. Serve on buns with barbeque sauce.
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