Easy Camp Oven Roast

We used newbie-proof hacks for camp oven success over coals

TIP: Print out your recipe in case you’re out of reception

Managing camp oven temperatures over coals takes time to learn. So to save ourselves tears, we adopted a few super easy hacks for this camp oven pot-style roast. By using a bit of water and stock, easy to measure heat beads, a forgiving cut of meat and a foil tray, our crew could enjoy a tasty roast in our newly-restored camp oven first go!

As we were using water in our camp oven, we didn’t preheat the camp oven, instead we allowed good time–4 and a half hours in total to build the fire, create coals and finish up, leaving us a little over three hours for the gentle roast.


Leg of lamb to fit your oven (we used 2kg)


Italian mixed spice

1L of stock

Cup of water

Root veggies

Gravy, to serve


For our fire:

1 bag of coals

20 kilos of mixed timber

Firestarters & long matches

Paper and kindling

10L of water to extinguish it



A family size camp oven (measure the lid for your coals)

Aluminium foil


Aluminium tray


Fire-proof gloves

Barbecue tongs

Lid lifter (we pizza pan grippers)

BBQ skewer


  1. Start with the fire, ensuring there’s room to away from the flame to rest the cooking coals
  2. To create coals, allow 40 minutes for heating beads in an established fire. For timber you may need more time. We aimed to maintain 12 beads on top and 9 underneath for duration of the roast, adjusting to maintain the sizzle–This size chart really helped
  3. As your fire builds, place a trivet or crunched up alloy foil balls in your oiled camp oven
  4. Place the lamb leg into a foil tray, pour on oil and season
  5. If you’re using water in the camp oven base like we did, start with a cold oven to avoid cracking it. Pour about a cup into the base
  6. Then, place the tray into the camp oven, pouring a litre of stock into the aluminium tray with the roast allowing any excess to spill into the camp oven base. We place alloy foil over the top of the roast
  7. Once your beads or coals are white, shovel the desired quantity onto a patch away from the fire for your pot to rest upon
  8. Rest your camp oven onto the coals, apply the lid then place coals over the top
  9. Once you’ve done this, continue creating and applying coals to top up as required, turning the oven every half an hour or so
  10. After about half an hour, we began to hear a reassuring sizzle from the camp oven among the crackling fire
  11. Two hours from putting the roast on, we carefully removed the lid and placed our roughly chopped veg into the aluminium tray
  12. Time to test. I skewered the meat, which bled red juice indicating it needed more time. Time to replace the lid and the coals
  13. About an hour later, pierce the meat, it’s time to check the juices–if they’re all clear time to pull camp oven off the coals and rest for five minutes. Serve with gravy.