Powerless Cooking: Sun Ovens

When Julie and I first started this blog back in 2008 we decided to take things in BabySteps so as to not get overwhelmed. One of the biggest fears we had about getting started was dealing with powerless cooking situations, so we decided to work on getting our food first so that we would at least be doing SOMETHING.

Over the last few months you may have noticed us going through powerless emergencies during the 7 Day Challenge, and discussing what we would do in extended powerless situations in the One Second After book discussions. Needless to say, we are NOW definitely thinking about powerless cooking!

Introducing Global Sun Oven

Right before the 7 Day Challenge we were contacted by Global Sun Oven and they were gracious enough to let us try out one of the Sun Ovens which worked out PERFECTLY to use it for the Challenge. The president of the company, Paul Munsen, happened to be in town and he brought me an oven to try out and gave me a little tutorial on how to use it. Now I’m so excited to get to share with you his tips and some info on how awesome this product is.

Getting Started

Uses for Sun Ovens

  • Bake, boil, or steam main course meals
  • Bake delicious bread that won’t BURN
  • Dehydrate fruits, vegetables, and meats
  • Bake cookies, brownies, or other desserts
  • Boil or pasteurize water
  • Kill infestations in grains or dried foods
  • Sanitize dishes
  • Dry firewood
  • Sprout foods
  • Decrystallize honey or jams

Christmas Promotion

We became authorized dealers of Global Sun Ovens so that we can help you get low prices and easy access to this great emergency preparedness product. As part of our Black Friday sales event (coming next week) we are offering a fantastic deal on Sun Oven accessories. So you can buy now with just the oven, or wait until next week and find out about all the bonuses you can get for just a little more money.

Can You Make Your Own Solar Oven?

YES! We understand that for many people a Sun Oven just may not be in their budget or on the top of their priority list for preparedness products just yet. We found instructions here for lots of different options on how to make your solar oven. It can only reach temperatures of 275 degrees, but it is definitely better than nothing in a powerless situation. The quality and durability of the Global Sun Oven is definitely worth the money if/when you can afford it.

What would YOU like to see us try with the Sun Oven? Leave us a comment and we will try them out so you can see the results before you make a purchasing decision!


  • MrsW

     How to decrystallize honey

  • Virginia

    The link you provided above “…We found instructions here for how to make your solar oven….” I get an error message “Page cannot be found” or something like that. Can you fix the broken link or post it as a reply to my post?

    • Looks like that website has removed that page.  Here is a link to tons of options for building your own!  http://www.solarcooking.org/plans/

  • K Guss

    I’d love to see a step by step with photos on your blog demonstrating how to bake bread with the Sun Oven. Thanks for all you do!

    • We are planning to do a lot more Sun Oven cooking when the weather warms up a bit. I admit it I don’t want to be out messing with the solar oven in the winter. If I had to in an emergency I would, but for now the videos will have to wait until Spring!

  • Dianaharty

    I’d like to see a photo walkthrough of you baking cookies and bread with the contraption. I bake a LOT, and if there’s a lot of condensation, that will make baking bread, cookies and the like very difficult if not impossible. If this puppy can do it, sign me up and show me how!

  • I’m glad that you shared the Sun Oven manufactured by a vendor along with information on how to make your own.

    I’m really torn about this subject, because I can’t get “hands on” to check it out before buying.

    Also, my personal take is that a Hybrid type cooker would be nice on those cloudy days or when you want to cook it a bit quicker. Unfortunately, I do not believe, or am not aware, of anyone who makes a ‘quality’ one.

    Are there any videos showing a meal step by step, along with a posting of the meal ingredients so we have an better visual understanding?

    Would love to see that to help since we can’t go to the average store to check one out.

  • Tracie

    Ok, sun ovens are great for sunny climates or summer. What do you do when its cloudy, day after day, in the winter?

    • Abmiller6

      That’s what I’m thinking. I live the Northeast where a solar oven would work great in the summer but I’m not so sure about the winter time. So I don’t know if it’s worth the investment.

    • My concept is this, on sunny days use the sun oven since it requires NO FUEL. Then you can conserve the fuel needed for your backup cooking source. My backup sources are a fireplace and a barbeque grill. Julie has the Volcano Grill and loves that too. But for a long term powerless situation you WOULD eventually run out of fuel… (except maybe wood which can be used in the volcano)

  • I made my own sun oven a year or so ago. The problem I could never get around is the amount of condensation that accumulates on the food side (eminating from the food) of the glass/plastic lid. The condensation severely hampers UV rays coming in and the food never cooked. In order to wipe it off repeatedly, it required opening the whole lid, which for obvious reasons didn’t help any. How does the Sun Oven that you sell meet this challenge? Does it have vent holes and if so, how does it stabilize the heat? Thanks!

    • Dialoguewme

      I know that you have to have a tight fitting lid and also the correct cookware.

    • Dialoguewme

      I know that you have to have a tight fitting lid and also the correct cookware.

    • I noticed some condensation but my temperature remained high enough to still cook the food. I’ve noticed most of the home ones can only reach temperatures up to 200 degrees or so. Mine got up to 350 degrees very easily.

  • I made my own sun oven a year or so ago. The problem I could never get around is the amount of condensation that accumulates on the food side (eminating from the food) of the glass/plastic lid. The condensation severely hampers UV rays coming in and the food never cooked. In order to wipe it off repeatedly, it required opening the whole lid, which for obvious reasons didn’t help any. How does the Sun Oven that you sell meet this challenge? Does it have vent holes and if so, how does it stabilize the heat? Thanks!

  • Mardi

    I have a sun oven and LOVE IT! It seems very intimidating at first but if you just try it you will love it’s simplicity. I bakes brownies in mine the first time and it took about 10 minutes longer than the directions called for. I have also cooked the best pork roast I have ever made! It was so moist. Purchase one or even two, you won’t regret it.