The Best RV Cooks Know These RV Oven Tips
Cooking in your RV oven shouldn’t have to be a chore. For those who live in their RV full-time, you can make most of the things you made in your sticks-and-bricks oven. It might just take a little more thought. Try some of these simple tips and you will be an expert in no time.
1. Pan size
This was a concern for me as I downsized for full-time RV living. What did I need to keep or purchase that would fit in the RV oven?
Unless you have a residential oven in your rig, your propane RV oven should fit a 10 X 15 inch cookie sheet or a 9 X 13 baking dish with plenty of room on the sides. Of course, check your size so you know for sure and make sure there is some space around the pan on each side.
2. Use a baking stone
I learned about this recently and haven’t actually tried it, but it makes sense. A baking/pizza stone can help you from burning your food on the bottom and, at the same time, keep your food from staying raw inside.
It should sit on the metal plate that is over the heating element. Make sure you don’t block the ventilation holes. Unglazed tiles from the hardware store can also work. The stone, or tiles, act as an insulator against the direct flame and distributes the heat throughout the oven.
3. Use an oven-safe thermometer
Whatever the knob says on your oven is probably not accurate. The purchase of an oven-safe thermometer will give you this information and help a lot with your cooking times.
4. Preheat your oven first
Once you know the true temperature of your RV oven, you will find it easier to know when you are up to your heating temperature. Compare this to what your knob indicates and you can coordinate that with your dial. If your thermometer says it’s at 400 and your dial says 350, you can adjust your recipe accordingly. Again, this will help with cooking times and avoid burned food.
“A reminder for some RV ovens is that you may have a separate ‘light position’ for your pilot light, requiring that you push in or turn the spring- loaded knob and hold it there for 20 seconds while you light the pilot and let the thermocouple come up to temp so that the gas flow will stay on and the flame stay lit. Also if your propane tanks have been off for awhile while your RV was in storage or when both tanks were disconnected to have them filled, you don’t want the pilot light to be the first thing you try to light. Light a stove top burner first to purge the air from the gas line, then light your pilot lights.” Rick Barkley, video reviewer
5. Adjust the metal rack
The rack in my oven has four adjustments, but to be honest, the two higher ones seem to be pretty useless. Depending on your RV oven, you can make this adjustment and see what works for you. If you want less heat on the bottom, use the upper adjustment, etc.
6. Rotate the food
Set your timer and rotate your pan halfway through cooking. This will ensure that your food will be cooked evenly.
7. Take outdoor temperatures into consideration
Like most RV ovens, it’s probably located on an outer wall and will be affected by the outside temperature. You might need to make adjustments for cooking time if you are experiencing a particularly cold or hot day.
8. Consider the kind of bakeware you use
Glass dishes work well and so do metal pans. Be sure to try a few different things to see what works for you and your oven.
9. Level your RV
Finally, make sure your RV is level. You don’t want your cake to have a slope or your casserole to escape the pan on the low side.
For more tips on cooking in your RV oven, check out this video from Long Long Honeymoon:
- You Don’t Need An Oven To Make These 10 No-Bake Desserts
- 6 Tips For Successful Baking In Your Oven
- 3 Big Myths About RV Microwave Convection Ovens
Terri and her husband, Todd, are full time RVers and work campers. They have been living full time in their RV for nearly three years with their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Newton, and their Mini Aussie puppy Remi. They are currently wintering in Arizona with plans to continue their travels next summer. Writing is Terri’s passion but she also loves hiking, kayaking and anything she can do outside.