Introduction: 5 Minute Build - Tin Can Cooker

Picture of 5 Minute Build - Tin Can Cooker

If you ever find yourself in the situation where lugging a huge camping stove around with you on a survival trip is not an option, try making this small, light and portable tin can cooker that will only take 5 minutes to knock up. It's about as simple as it gets, two household items that everyone can get their hands on. Once you have built the creation, it's up to you about what to cook on it. The only limit is your imagination. Happy creating.

Step 1: Tools and Materials

Picture of  Tools and Materials


  1. Tin can (try to avoid one with the epoxy resin lining)
  2. Mesh for the grill
  3. A burner to put inside the can (I am going to make one in a future project)


  1. A drill of some sort
  2. 6mm diameter drill bit
  3. mesh cutters

Step 2: Preparing the Can

Picture of Preparing the Can

To the prepare the can for cooking, take your drill of sort and make nine ,or any amount of, holes equal distance apart around the circumference of the can ( I would suggest they are at the bottom so that they draw the flame upwards). You can use any sized drill bit. I used a 6 mm diameter one but as long as there are holes to feed the flame. Once the holes have been drilled, file away any sharp edges from drilling to prevent nasty cuts.

Step 3: Preparing the Mesh Grill

Picture of Preparing the Mesh Grill

For the grill, take the mesh and cut a circle from it , with the mesh cutters, that fits tightly inside, on the lip at the top of the can. It is important the mesh fits well because the last thing you want is food ending up in the burning chamber. You could devise some clever latching system that keeps the grill in place but I decided to keep it simple as it is a 5 minute build.

Step 4: Finishing Up

Picture of Finishing Up

The final part is to put the grill onto the top of the tin can. there should be a lip at the top of the tin can that is useful for resting the grill on. That's it done. You are now ready to start cooking! Just be careful , stating the obvious, don't try to pick up the can when cooking or shortly after doing so because it will be very hot! I hope this solves your camping cooking issues and I would love to hear about what you have created in the comment section. While you are here, why don't you have a look at some of my other projects at Chris_maker. Thank you for the support.


chris_maker (author)2016-07-24

Thank you so much. I tried to make it simple yet effective

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)2016-07-23

Nice design. The expanded metal really helps the air flow work better. So it burns more efficiently.

chris_maker (author)2016-07-23

I would love to hear about what you cooked on your tin can cooker and possibly what modifications you have made to it to improve it.

About This Instructable




Bio: Hi, I am Chris and I have a passion for engineering and designing. I love innovation and new ideas. I hope some of my projects ... More »
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