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Cook with the sun

Updated on February 3, 2015

Have You Tried Cooking With The Sun?

Did you know you can actually cook some food in a solar over powered by guess what? Silly question of course – it’s the sun. You can use a solar oven to heat up some food, bake bread and cook a simple meal. Think of it as an emergency back up system for cooking, or just to save on your electricity and have some fun in the process. If you go camping it would be a great way to heat up some food. So why not try making your very own solar oven and start cooking with the power of the sun


Make Your Own Solar Oven

To build your soar oven gather together the materials you will need. For a basic setup you can start with two cardboard boxes, one being a little smaller than the other. For a more permanent setup you can build a box out of wood. Find a piece of Plexiglas or a piece of glass that will fit on top of your box. If you are unable to find either of those two items just try stretching a piece of clear plastic sheeting over the boxes opening.

Line the inside of the box with some black craft paper or paint the inside with some black non-toxic paint; this will help absorb the heat from the sun. Another tip is to put some kind of material between the two boxes to act as insulation. A thermometer that you can set inside the box would be great so you can monitor the inside temperature.

Build the Solar Oven

Place one cardboard box inside the other. There should be a couple inches of space between the two.

You can fill the space under the inner box and between the four sides with crumbled newspaper, styrafoam or anything you can find to provide insulation.

Line the sides of the inner box with foil, this will act as a reflector. And paint the bottom of the inside black to help absorb the heat.

Cut out a piece of cardboard a little bigger than the opening of your box. Line this with foil to act as a reflector and attach to outside of box to reflect the suns rays into the box. You can also use one of those auto window shades that comes in a foil type of material.

With the box situated towards the sun, place your food in a container into the box. Cover the box with a sheet of glass, plexiglass or stretch plastic over it. Adjust the reflector so it can reflect some of the suns rays into the box. Another method is to place the food container in an oven bag, this way you may be able to do without a cover on the box.

You can place an oven type thermometer in the box to monitor the temperature.

There is a downside to using a solar oven. If you live in the northern climates you may have less sun to work with. The same holds true for the winter months, if your box is not very well insulated you may not get a decent inside temperature to work with. Even on a nice sunny day during the winter you have to deal with the cold air. But during the summer months you can absolutely take advantage of the solar power to cook in your oven.

Have you used a solar oven?

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    • Makoo profile image

      Makoo 7 years ago

      We have tried this for heating up food that was already precooked and it worked fine. We could have actually cook something from scartch. Need lots of sun.

    • profile image

      jgelien 7 years ago

      I want to try this out. Thanks for the instructions.

    • profile image

      Plantagenet 8 years ago

      That's great! Thanks:)

    • AppalachianCoun profile image

      AppalachianCoun 8 years ago

      Good lens and great info. The way things are going this is good info to know. Thank-you for the tips.

    • MsSnow4 profile image

      Carol Goss 8 years ago

      Great lens :)