How to Make a Cardboard Box Oven

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How to Make a Cardboard Box Oven


You don’t have to live without the joy of baking during a survival situation thanks to this awesome little trick that anyone can benefit from knowing. If you have a big cardboard box, some aluminum foil, a few empty aluminum cans and a grill or rack, then you can create and enjoy a makeshift oven that is extremely effective. It uses a minimal amount of charcoal, and the aluminum creates the ideal conditions for even baking.

While this may not be the best way to make some very temperature-specific meals, it will work wonders on cooking anything from squash to decent-sized cuts of meat. You can even bake pasta and some casseroles with this method, and this trick will definitely open up lots of meal-time possibilities. Take a look a the following steps, and see how easy it is to bake without the need for gas, power and a stove in the kitchen.



The first step is to choose the right box. It should be in good condition and able to retain its shape when placed on its side. It doesn’t need to have a lid, but being able to open and close the oven will help to regulate temperature. It also needs to be big enough to house whatever rack you have available for cooking.   Open up the box and cut out the side-flaps of the lid. Then cut away one the top piece as well. This will act as the door to the oven.


All you need to do now is cover the entire box with aluminum foil, both inside and out. It is especially important that you make sure there are no exposed areas of cardboard along the seams. Add extra foil if necessary. You should also consider placing more than one layer on the box for added strength. Additional foil will also increase the heat-generating capability of this makeshift oven.




The next step is to create a charcoal container. You can do this simply by fashioning a basin that is about six inches long and wide. You can make one bigger or smaller based on the size of the oven, and it may take some trial and error before you discover how much charcoal you really need when cooking.

Finally, place four empty aluminum drink cans underneath the rack to support it above the charcoal container.


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You can adjust the height of the rack in the oven by using taller cans, bricks or even cutting a piece of one can and placing it on top of another.   Remember that improvisation and flexibility is key to the success of this particular method. If the oven burns too hot or your food cooks too quickly, consider placing fewer charcoal briquettes inside or holding the door closed. If your food is cooking too slowly, maybe lowering the rack will help.

See how it can enhance your cooking options while also relying on minimal resources. Play around with it and discover what you can do. But, at the end of the day, fewer things are as beneficial and practical as this simple oven.