Monday, April 11, 2016

Camp Stove Coffee Pot, Percolator Type

Most everyone enjoys a morning or evening cup or two of coffee. But what do you do when a disaster occurs and the electrical grid is down for weeks? Your Mr. Coffee or Keurig brewers are useless.

Here’s where camping gear comes into play with the old fashion Percolator to save the day! The Percolator shown below has two purposes, one for making coffee and the other for boiling water for instant soups, dehydrated pouch meals or water for tea etc. You don’t need a camping stove to make it work, a simple campfire will brew and keep the coffee or water hot all day long.

However, there is one obstacle to making coffee in a Percolator, it’s the coffee grind you use at home! Most households only have the finer ‘drip grind’ coffee in the pantry. You need a coarser grind for a Percolator otherwise the drip grind coffee will pass through the holes in the perk brew basket and be in every cup of coffee. Below I’ll show you how I solved that problem using the Mr. Coffee filters.

The Percolator Coffee Pot:
All metal, no plastic or wooden handles which makes it suitable for campfire use.

The coffee brew basket assembly.

The standard Mr. Coffee filter that I modify to use drip grind coffee in a percolator.

I use a pen of pencil and poke a small hole in the center of the filter. The hole is a little smaller than the percolator basket center tube.

This will make a snug fit around the tube so grounds can’t pass by and get into the finished brewed coffee. Slide it over the center tube and push it down and out to fill the basket.

Add the coffee.

Place the basket lid on and insert the assembly into the pot filled with cold water.

Now you’re ready to brew on the camp stove or campfire.


  1. coffee is so important to me, I keep one of these in the back of my van! Being in the desert, I always carry water anyway so a pot, some coffee, sugar and creamer packets saved from fast food visits and I'm all set.I even carry a sterno fold up stove for a quick fire. I ain't going without my coffee! ha ha ha good post as usual Mike.....

    1. Rat, you are ready for anything. I like the idea of the Sterno stove!

  2. I've been doing this for years while camping and may I suggest you pick up a good quality air pot or two to put coffee in after brewing to keep your coffee from getting that burned taste after sitting in the percolator all day. When camping with larger groups I always have a line of folks waiting for the fresh brew each morning.

    1. That's a good idea although it hasn't been a problem for me yet. The coffee doesn't last long enough to get cold.

  3. I have one on the shelf that I use if the power goes out, it belonged to my grandparents and for some reason the coffee smells and tastes different.

  4. I started drinking coffee this way while camping, but now that's what we use all the time. Just got a nice stainless steel one from L. L. Bean. Not cheap, but quality never is.

    Perked coffee is hotter than drip so stays warm longer in a thermos.

  5. Real coffee for men not that K cup s#@%^. Now I do use a Stanley thermos once its brewed to save propane when camping. I make a big pot for me and the wife. Mike a Sterno stove is a must for your vans kit,I use the catering refills from Sam's 12.99 for a dozen.

  6. Thanks for this idea. I had a post awhile back where I found a percolator and was glad to have it at the farm. I never knew about the coffee ground thing until you mentioned it. 2nd Man, in the event of a SHTF snceario, will be forever grateful to you if I can make sure he has coffee, LOL! Thanks, as was said above, great post, as usual!!

  7. Aside from the disaster-preparedness aspect of percolators, they just plain make better coffee! As for the filters; percolators are actually starting to make a comeback, due the the mass-realization that, well, they just plain make better coffee! There are filters for these; just flat paper discs that slip onto the percolator tube and cover the holes on the bottom of the basket. They're cheaper than the drip filters and store better. No filter? No problem! Just let the pot sit for a few minutes after perking, and then use a little care decanting the coffee. Most of the grounds will just sit on the bottom of the pot. Personal experience tells me though, that if you need a cup of coffee bad enough, a few grounds in the bottom of your cup won't even figure into the picture!

  8. Mike,

    If you're a coffee drinker, it's necessary to have a percolator when the SHTF. Most people don't realize it.


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