5 Secrets Of Brewing Good Coffee Outside

Being outdoors with your family and be very fun and relaxing.

Enjoying the nature, spending time with your loved ones, and making memories. 

But what would make your trip even better?

A nice cup of coffee after a night of stories by a campfire. 


However, since most coffee gadgets are not portable and need electrical outlets, making coffee while camping can be a little difficult.

Today, I am going to let you in on a few secrets to making coffee outdoors to make your trip better than ever.

Outdoor Coffee Tricks

I have put together a list of everything you need to know about making coffee outdoors.

While I’m a huge fan of vacations and nature.

And all of you know, I can’t go a day without a delicious cup of coffee. 

Being a coffee lover means finding ways to make coffee, no matter where I may be.

1. Nature’s Brew

Whether you are camping, hiking, or just spending time outside of your home, it is indeed very possible to have your cup if Joe anywhere, anytime.

My husband, Jack, knows I am not myself if I go a day without coffee (and the same goes for him). 

So together, we have found a few ways to make sure we are the happy souls that we are meant to be, even away from my precious coffee maker.

On The Road Coffee

Driving hours and hours can be very exhausting.

Between bickering with your 6 brothers and sisters over who plays better music, or dealing with your Chihuahua that requires bathroom stops every 30 minutes, you need your own mental getaway.

And let’s face it, gas stations don’t always have the best or freshest coffee.

All you’ll need to pack in your suitcase is a coffee press with a filter, ground coffee, hot water (which you can get from a gas station).

And a travel mug to keep your coffee hot.

Simply just put your grounds and hot water in the coffee press, push down for extraction, and let it flow into your travel mug

Keep in mind that the water is hot so take caution and be careful not to spill it on yourself.

Backpacker’s Coffee

Backpacking is commonly known as hiking with, you guessed it, a backpack! 

But of course, while you’re hiking, you don’t usually have access to an electrical outlet to plug in a coffee maker.

Also, a normal home coffee maker doesn’t quite fit in a backpack.

Making coffee while backpacking is actually quite easy.

And with your belongings being carried on your back, it is best to keep it as light as possible.

A reusable coffee filter is the lightest option behind instant coffee making it an excellent choice for backpacking.

Just fill the filter with coffee grounds, place it on the rim of a mug, pour hot water through it, and let it steep for a few minutes.

Coffee On A Picnic

When I think of a picnic, I usually picture relaxing on a blanket with a basket of snacks by my side. But what makes relaxing better?

Coffee, of course.

Having a picnic on a hot summer day calls for some good ole’ iced coffee. 

Spend some time the night before to prepare.

Brew coffee as you normally would at home, then wait for it to cool a bit. Pour it into empty ice trays and store them in the freezer.

The next day as you're packing your things, make a fresh pot of coffee and pour into a to-go cup.

Throw your frozen coffee cubes in it and as the cubes melt, your coffee doesn't get watered down

2. Outdoor Coffee Gear

It is important to find the right portable coffee tools since you aren’t in your own kitchen.

Plus, most kitchen coffee makers can be fragile and may break while you have them packed.


Remember, these items are not always required, but they can definitely make it easier to make your coffee on the go.

Reusable Coffee Filter (Backpacker’s Best Friend)

Reusable Coffee Filter

Paper filters are fine to use, but they are also a pain. If they get too moist, there is a possibility of ripping.

It is more convenient to use a reusable filter.

Paper filters are only single use and can produce more trash, while a reusable filter is, well, reusable. 

It is used just like a paper filter, but instead of finding a garbage can or recycling bin, you just simply rinse it.

And it is ready for another pot of coffee. These have even come in handy with my own home coffee maker.

Espresso-Like AeroPress

The AeroPress coffee maker is lightweight and durable, making it ideal for you to use when you’re camping, backpacking, boating, or just traveling.

This is my favorite way to make a single cup of coffee! 

It tastes similar to what an espresso would taste like. You are able to use a much finer grind when making coffee this way.

They are also inexpensive and worth every penny!

French Press For Car Campers

When you think of making coffee on the go, you probably don’t think to turn to something fancy that includes the name “French”.


Similar to an AeroPress, it is easy to carry around because it is very light weight. 

French press coffee makers are available in sturdy materials such as stainless steel and plastic.

Also, if you choose to use plastic, some are BPA-free so it is safe to make your coffee in.

Related reading : French Press Mistakes To Avoid

Pour And Drip Anywhere, Anytime

Another beautifully portable option for making coffee while camping is with a drip or pour over coffee maker. 

You can find pour over stands in some coffee shops, but there is others specifically designed for camping.

It’s very simple to use as well.

You just place the stand over your mug with a filter, pour in your grounds, pour water on top of it, and let it drip straight into your cup. 

The Percolator

A percolator is simple to use and easily portable.

A metal tube runs up into a metal basket filled with coffee grounds.

As the water boils, it percolates up the tube and into the basket. 

Most percolators come with a glass or plastic viewing area at the top so you can see when the coffee is your desired color.

Minipresso “Shots” On The Go

Portable espresso makers have become more and more popular.

If you like espresso shots, then this type of coffee maker might be perfect for you.

Different models have different instructions but they all use the same overall technique. 

Just pour your fine coffee grounds into one compartment and hot water into another compartment.

You use the hand pump to build up pressure, which allows you to “pull a shot”.

3. Perfect Outdoor Hand Grinder

A grinder is pretty crucial when it comes to outdoor coffee, especially if you use whole coffee beans instead of pre-ground beans.

The best grinder to take on trips with you is a hand grinder because it is portable and doesn’t require an electrical outlet.

Porlex or Hario

I personally recommend using a Porlex grinder, or a Hario grinder.


Because they were specifically made for travelling so they are portable and durable.

They are heat-resistant and shave the coffee bean instead of cracking it like your blade grinder would do.

They also provide consistent grinds and are good for repeated use.

4. Perfect Outdoor Coffee Variations

Camping usually consists of giving up everyday gadgets for a few hours or maybe a whole weekend.


While we are willing to give up our computers or cell phones, a good cup of coffee is not something we can let go of.


Thankfully, there are multiple ways to enjoy a good brew in the great outdoors.

Straight To The Pot (Cowboy Coffee)

This method, commonly known as cowboy coffee, is quite popular to outdoorist. 

The grounds literally go straight into the pot. 

There’s some plus sides, as well as some down sides with this method.

Some things I like about this method are:

  • I don’t need to haul around a bunch of extra parts.
  • It’s quick and easy.

However, a few things I found that make me hesitant are:

  • If you don’t use a cloth or clean sock to filter the grounds, they go straight into your cup and you end up drinking them.
  • It is difficult to get the exact result each time. One cup can be strong, while the next cup may taste more watery.

If you’re looking for the quickest way to make coffee, or if you are brave enough to drink coffee grounds, this method works in your favor.

DIY Coffee Bags

This method is very simple and inexpensive.

All you need is a coffee filter, coffee grounds, and string (or dental floss if you want to get creative).

Simply, put your grounds into the filter, draw the edges up, and use your string to tie it.

Place it in your water, and let it steep.

My favorite things about this method are:

  • It is super quick and easy.
  • It only takes little effort.
  • It is very, very lightweight.

Although it is a great method, nothing is perfect. A few things caught my attention such as:

  • If the “bag” is not tied tight enough, some grounds may leak into your cup. 
  • Even though it’s easy to make, you have to throw the bag away after each use in order to get a fresh flavor every time.

All in all, this method is not only one of the cheapest, but also one of the more fun ways to make coffee.

Especially if you enjoy arts and crafts.

Dirtbag Coffee

Don’t let the name fool you, no dirt is used in this method.

It is very similar to the DIY coffee bags, except you use a cloth of some sort. 

I personally love this method because:

  • It is very convenient. I can use a shirt, a washcloth, a handkerchief, or a sock (clean, of course).
  • It doesn’t have to be thrown away each time I want to use it. All I have to do is rinse off my cloth.

As always, I find the obstacles of every situation. 

These include:

  • Having to tie thicker material than a regular filter. It’s more likely to come untied.
  • It is recommended to use clean cloths, so you shouldn’t just take the shirt off your back. You have to pack extra materials if you plan to use this specific method.

If you’re creative and prepared, this is perfect for you. 

Cheater, Cheater, Coffee Drinker

If you would rather not bother with additional gear or grounds, instant coffee is a perfect option for you.

Instant coffee is just freeze dried coffee crystals that you put straight into your cup.

A few things I find awesome about this method are:

  • It is perfect for lazy mornings.
  • Can be dissolved in hot water or even put into cold water for the “iced coffee” feel

But I do find a few things to be inconvenient like:

  • It can be slightly expensive. 
  • It doesn’t have that real coffee taste that we all long for.

This is a very reliable method if you don’t have the energy or time to use another method.

Kuju’s Pocket PourOver

This modernized single-serving method is great for you if you want to impress people with your coffee making skills.

A quest to find something better than instant coffee, resulted in the creation of the Pocket PourOver by Kuju

It is a single serving, portable drip coffee that you can use to enjoy quality coffee no matter where you are.

This device sits above your cup or pot with a filter, and sends water down through a small drip opening.

A few things I find interesting about this are:

  • It is for the most part lightweight and inexpensive.
  • You can control the amount and consistency of the water you pour.

However, some things that slightly bother me are:

  • If you don’t pour at a consistent rate, your first cup may taste different than your last cup.
  • It requires a little more patience than other methods.

Kuju is also known for it’s employees being rescued victims of sex-trafficking.

If you like controlling the strength of your coffee, while also contributing to a good cause, this method is your go-to.

Drip Brewer by Snow Peak

Similar to the Kuju Pourover, this is a collapsible coffee maker that you just unfold, put a filter and grounds in, place on top of your mug, and pour water over the grounds and let it drip.

This drip brewer is great for outdoor use and also has many good qualities such as:

  • It folds up for easy storage, and doesn’t take up space in your backpack.
  • It is made of stainless steel so it is easy to clean after use.

I did find a few small snags with this device like:

  • Because it is a small drip brewer, it requires a little patience which isn’t really convenient when I’m dying for a cup of coffee.
  • Being made of stainless steel, it has a little more weight to it then I expected. 

If you are a fan of drip brewing, this is a great investment for you.

But if you prefer to have your coffee within a few seconds, this may not be your go-to maker.

Java Drip

Made out of flexible plastic and nylon, this little brewer is great for those long trips in the great outdoors.

With this device, you can brew coffee outdoors without having to waste energy or space in your bag.

This is a great buy because:

  • It is super lightweight so you won’t even notice you are carrying a coffee maker. 
  • It is flexible and easy to stuff in a bag.
  • The built-in leg clips make it easy to attach to almost any mug.

However, there is a few things about this device that I am not a fan of, such as:

  • It requires paper filters so I have to throw out and replace the filter each time.
  • The nylon is slightly unstructured so it is difficult for me to get consistent cups.

With that being said, it is great for when you don’t have much space to spare in your bag. 

It is a perfect go-to if you are a heavy packer. 


This fancy device looks like a high-tech ice cream scooper.

By building pressure, this handheld coffee maker replicates concentrated coffee extraction. 

All you do with this gadget is place your grounds in the coffee pod, fill the water cavity located on top of the pod, and pump with the pod facing down.

A few things I love about this is:

  • It is a single, handheld tool so you don’t need to pack extra parts.
  • You can control the amount of pressure and get your perfect brew.

What I don’t like about this tool is:

  • It requires a little muscle and effort.
  • It doesn’t retain water temperature.

But if you prefer handheld devices over automatics, this tool is perfect for you.


Do you like this list? Or, maybe some have questions.

Do not hesitate to ask me on the comment section.

I swear, I'll love to know about those.

If you have anything else to add, or want to share your own experiences, please feel free to leave a comment, now!. 

Don’t forget to share this with your friends and family so they can also learn how to make coffee outdoors!

Sarah Price

Creator & editor here at House Of Arabica. I'm a proud mother of one baby girl. Passionate about coffees and their variations. Love to review coffee accessories! Please feel free to put your comment below.

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