Versatile, ready-to-use 8-quart dutch oven with multi-functional lid ideal for campfire use
The Lodge Camp 8-Qt. is very similar to its sister model (the Lodge L12DCO3 Deep Camp version), but is wider and not as deep. Other than that, it still has a great multifunction lid, versatility, and design that’s perfect for use over a campfire or indoors. It also comes pre-seasoned, so you don’t have to do as much work to make the most of the cast-iron construction.
8-quarts for campfire and fireplace
Like the other 8-quart Lodge, the Camp holds 8 quarts. This is spread out over a wider surface and isn’t as deep, so it’s more suited to bigger campfires and meals that need to have direct contact with the cooking surface. The Camp’s design makes it ideal for campfires; it has a wire bale so you can hang the oven directly over a fire, and three legs to place the oven over coals. For smaller oven options, you can get this same model in 1, 2, 4, or 6-quarts.
When you’re out camping, you might want to roast or bake something. The flanged lid is meant to hold coals so the heat source comes from the top of the oven. You can also flip the lid over and use it as a griddle for pancakes, eggs, and bacon.
Pre-seasoned cast iron
Because the Camp 8-Qt. dutch oven is made from cast-iron, it needs to be seasoned. Rather than making you do it, Lodge has pre-seasoned this dutch oven for you with a natural vegetable oil. This creates a nonstick surface so food doesn’t get stuck, and helps prevent the oven from rusting. You do need to maintain this oven, which can be annoying. This will be discussed more in the “Weaknesses” section.
The Lodge Camp dutch oven is extremely versatile. In addition to a campfire, it can used on a grill, on virtually every kind of stovetop (including induction), and in an indoor oven. Many dutch ovens can only be used indoors, but since this one is designed with campers in mind, you can cook more meals outdoor and make camping a gourmet experience.
Superior heat distribution and retention
Cast-iron is the material of choice for dutch ovens. It offers superior heat distribution and retention that make it ideal for slow-cooking and searing. It’s also one of two metals that works with induction stovetops, and is more consistent than aluminum.
Can be used to cook/bake anything
The Lodge Camp 8 Quart dutch oven can fry, sear, bake, roast, simmer, and more. This broadens your menu options since you can make basically any kind of dish in just this one piece of cookware. If you don’t like to own a lot of pots and pans because you’re limited on space or just like to live minimalistically, getting this dutch oven is a great idea.
The Lodge Camp is about 20 pounds, which can be pretty difficult to move around. It’s best used for the kind of camping where you aren’t hiking or carrying your equipment around, because this dutch oven would make your trip miserable. When you’re serving food or moving the oven around when it’s hot, be very careful.
Special maintenance required
The cast-iron construction needs to be taken care of. There are very specific rules about cast-iron. You can’t wash in dishwasher or use soap, and you will need to re-season the cooking surface eventually. This process is relatively simple, so once you’ve educated yourself on maintenance, it isn’t that difficult.
If you want to keep your cookware to a minimum and like to cook outdoors, the Lodge Camp 8-Qt. Dutch Oven is right up your alley. It can make full meals using just one pot, and the lid even works with coals on top and as a skillet. You can make basically anything with the dutch oven, including soups, full cuts of meat, breads, and desserts. It works over open flames, on coals, and on indoor heat sources as well, like induction stovetops and in the oven. With proper care and maintenance, you’ll get years of great meals out of this 8-Quart Lodge.