How to Store Cast Iron for Camping

Last Updated on August 29, 2022

It is best to use cast iron cookware when camping. Because, cast iron is thicker, so it will heat more effectively for longer periods of time. Cast iron can be used over an open flame as well as on a camp stove.

Cast iron is a material that should not be left out in extreme temperatures. The cast iron should be stored in a dry place and kept away from the elements. Or else the moisture will make the cast iron rust and affect its quality.

You have to store your cast iron carefully for camping because it needs to be kept long. Before reserving, you need to clean, dry, and season your cast iron. Then store it in a proper airtight place. I have explained the method of storing cast iron below.

Store Cast Iron for Camping

Keep your cast iron clean

You need to clean your cast iron cookware properly before storing it. The remaining food will damage your cast iron if you don’t clean it. Make sure the cookware is free from extra oil and food particles.

Clean your cookware with warm water by using a small amount of soap. Rub your cookware with a sponge. If the pan is dirty, scrub it with a kitchen towel and a mixture of salt and oil or water.

Put your cast iron dry 

Make sure the cookware is dry before storing it. Rust can occur if excess moisture or cooking oil is left on the pan. Store cookware in a dry place is the best.

Season your cast iron

You need to season your cast iron before storing it. For seasoning your cast iron, you need:

  • Clean the cast iron 
  • Preheat the oven to 300-400 degrees.
  • Apply vegetable oil to the cast oven
  • Put the cast iron inside the oven 
  • Bake it for 15 to 20 minutes.

Stack your cast iron

Wrap your cast iron with a paper towel, newspaper, or dish towel, but don’t overlap. Make sure you use something between them. Brown paper bags and layers of paper towels are required for more than one cast iron.

Place a brown paper bag with a layer of paper towel between each cast iron cookware. The purpose of putting them between is to prevent them from scratching and rusting.

Remove the lid

When it comes to preserving cast iron, proper ventilation is crucial. You must store the cast iron and its lid separately. Lids can trap moisture, causing problems such as rust.

Store your cast iron

The most important thing to keep in mind when storing cast iron is that the place must be dry. You have to clean and dry the cast iron before storing it. You can store cast iron in different places in your kitchen.

  • In a cabinet

You can keep your cast iron in the cabinet of your kitchen. Do not store cast iron in the cupboard under the sink because the cabinet has to be dry enough.

  • In a box or storage bag

You can store your cast iron in a plastic box or storage bag. Keep in mind that they should not be fully airtight. Keep a little space for airflow.

  • In the oven

Cast-iron cookware can be stored in the oven. If you don’t have any space to store cast iron, the oven will be the best place to keep it. Before preheating your oven don,t forget to remove the cast iron.

Select cast iron cookware for camping

Which cast iron pieces you should select depends on what types of food you will cook during camping. Cast iron cookware is available in different shapes and sizes. They are used for various purposes. It’s totally up to you what you like to eat.

Cast iron skillet:  Choose a cast-iron skillet to cook eggs, pancakes, curry, burgers, steaks.

Cast iron pan:  Select cast iron pan to make foods like soup, pork, and beans.

Cast iron dutch oven: Choose a cast iron dutch oven if you want to cook food like pizza, cookies, chicken, fish, etc.

You should also consider the weight of your cast iron.

Pack your cast iron for camping

After selecting which piece of cast iron cookware you are taking for the camping, you need to pack them carefully. You have to make sure that cast iron is clean and dry before sealing. Don’t forget to put a towel paper layer between the cast iron.

Several options exist to pack and store your cast iron which will be discussed below.

Cast iron tote bag

For camping, you can carry your cast iron in a tote bag. There are various types and sizes of cast iron tote bags available. Dutch oven tote bags and skillet tote bags are among them. They are designed in different sizes from 8’’ to 12’’.You have to select the size of tote bags according to your need.

These bags have padding and supported handles to make it easier to protect and transport your cookware. You can also use this bag for storing while camping. You can carry both the cast iron skillet and dutch oven in dutch oven tote bags because it has a larger capacity than skillet tote bags. 

Protective materials

You can wrap your cookware with different types of materials. It is a simple and inexpensive method for protecting your cast iron for camping. The things you can use to wrap your cast iron cookware are:

  • An old clean big towel.
  • Old pillowcase.
  • Brown paper shopping bags.

It protects your cookware from damage and scratch in the vehicle while traveling.


You can use a milk crate to carry your cast iron for camping. Put a paper towel between the cast iron to avoid rust and scratch.

Plastic tote box

Caring cast iron in a plastic tote box with a lid will be a better option for camping. Many plastic tote boxes have wheels. These wheels make it easier to carry tote boxes from your vehicle to the campsite. Do not forget to put a paper towel between the cast iron cookware.

Store cast iron after camping

It is critical to clean and preserve the cast iron after returning from any camp. Storing cast iron is necessary for the next camping trip. If you do not store the cast iron properly, it will be damaged. Tips for storing processes have been discussed above.

Here, I have pointed out the storing process in short:

  • Keep your cast iron clean.
  • Keep your cast iron dry.
  • Seasoned your cast iron 
  • Store it 

Final thought

If you are not going to use your cast iron for a long time, it is necessary to store it properly to last long. Keep in mind to clean, dry season the cast iron before storing. Follow the above tips to clean, dry, season, and store your cast iron.

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Author: Euell Gibbons

Outdoorsman and proponent of natural diets. He loves camping, hiking and exploring the great outdoors. Camping is a way of life for him - as soon as he can get away from work, he's out there!

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