Dutch Oven Baking on Your Wood Stove
Baking in a Dutch Oven on your wood-burning stove is a great way to use your ‘free’ source of heat and make some delicious food while you are at it! You can use a Dutch oven to make a wide range of baked goods in your oven, on a wood stove, or on a campfire. It does take a little getting used to, so try this when you have some time to experiment.
If you have an old-fashioned wood cook stove with an oven you can use it to bake bread, cakes, and pies a bit more easily than in a Dutch oven on the stovetop. There is still a learning curve and you may wish to invest in an oven thermometer.
Read more about it in my post on How to Cook with a Wood Stove.
If you don’t have an oven in your woodstove, you can use a Dutch oven on the stovetop as long as it is flat and large enough for the oven.
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Cooking in a Dutch Oven
I like cooking in a Dutch oven when we have a campfire in our backyard. A nice bed of coals is necessary to get the best results. If you try this, place the food in the Dutch oven, place it on the coals, and pile hot coals on top to cook everything evenly.
There are oven boxes you can set on top of your woodstove for more even heat distribution for baking. You can also use a Dutch oven, like the one in the top center of this photo.
Baking in the Dutch Oven
I enjoy using my Dutch oven for baking on the woodstove, but it has been a learning experience. Here are some things that are helpful if you try this.
Tips For Baking In A Dutch Oven On The Wood Stove
- Preheat the Dutch oven on top of the woodstove
- Set the lid next to the Dutch oven on the woodstove to preheat
- Use a trivet or air bake cookie sheet under footless Dutch ovens
- Make sure your pan will fit inside the oven if you are using one
- Keep the wood stove burning evenly
- Use an oven thermometer to test the temp before adding food
- Stay close to the stove in case food starts to burn
- Keep oven mitts handy
- For moist foods, leave the lid slightly ajar to allow moisture to escape
Preheat the Dutch oven and lid separately. Set the lid on the top of the wood stove, next to the Dutch oven so that it heats up as much as the bottom. Place an oven thermometer inside the Dutch oven prior to adding the food to check the temperature. Place the preheated lid on top and wait a few minutes, then check the thermometer to make sure the temp is about right.
Start Out With An Easy Recipe
For your first attempt at baking in a Dutch oven on your wood stove, try something fairly easy. Make a batch of Maple Walnut Granola and leave the lid of the oven off to allow moisture to evaporate. Stir occasionally to prevent it from burning.
Next, Try An Intermediate Recipe
Once you’ve got the hang of it with a few simple baking projects, try something a bit harder like a batch of cornbread, a cut-up chicken or a loaf of quick bread.
Use a pan placed inside the Dutch oven after it has been preheated. Place a trivet or air-bake cookie sheet under the Dutch oven as an added measure to prevent scorching.
If the food you are baking is quite moist and you would like a crusty loaf, for example, you’ll need to leave the lid slightly ajar to allow the moisture to evaporate.
More Advanced Baking Adventures
Before you know it, you’ll be ready to try baking a loaf of whole wheat bread, a pie, or other foods that can be a bit trickier. I’m still experimenting with these advanced baking projects and I’ll update this post when I have more info to share.
Remember to follow the tips I shared at the beginning of the post to increase your successful baking adventures with your Dutch oven!
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