Build your own expedition truck: Outdoor kitchen

Outdoor kitchen in our Expedition truck

Well, kitchen is a big word, it’s more like an outdoor cooking stove since it has no sink or cabinets.

We wanted a permanent outdoor kitchen because ….

  • we try to live mostly outdoors
  • we wanted to keep the smells and humidity outside
  • no more shuffling around with a gas cooker & bottle, taking it from inside to outside.


Gas cookers

We had to wait a while for this kitchen to be realised.

Step 1:  Make room for it.  We moved the truck’s air filter from its original location to the roof rack.

Step 2: The new outdoor storage boxes had to be designed and constructed.

Step 3: Find a gas cooker with the measurements to fit the storage box.

Step 4: Installation of the propane bottles, gas hose and pipes.


From the two 5kg propane bottles we run the 2 flame gas cooker inside the camper unit and the separate 2 flame in the outdoor kitchen.

Why only two 5kg bottles? It’s not being used for anything else but cooking. Therefore,  they hold for ever!! Even better now, since we use our little mobile induction plate more than the gas cookers.

Another challenge was the connection between the gas cooker inside the living unit and the propane bottles stored in the outdoor storage box. Our camper unit (Zeppelin shelter) is demountable from the chassis. Thus, we needed to come up with a solution to disconnect the propane pipe/hose that goes to the cooker inside. We needed to install a quick release connection (German Tüv approved).

Step 5: Mandatory examination of the gas installation by a professional.



Induction? Yes!

Normally our batteries are fully charged at the end of the day – due to driving or having enough sun hours. With cooking a normal 2-pot-meal* we use about 10-15% of our battery capacity. Leaving enough power to run everything else for the night like lights and heating.

*Rice dish: We only cook the rice for half the time it normally takes and then wrap the pot in blankets. And let it slow cook while we prepare the rest of the meal.

*Pasta dish: We bring the pasta to boil for 2 minutes then let it slow cook like the rice. (Pasta that normally takes 10 minutes to be “al dente” takes now about 17 minutes)

To use the mobile induction plate (bought at Lidl) outside, we installed a 220v waterproof socket next to the outdoor kitchen.


Finally we are ready to cook!!


What would we do differently?

We never thought that we would have enough power to use the induction plate so often – about 85% of our cooking – with our rather small 220 Ah battery bank.  We do however have quite a bit of solar panels on the roof (4 x 190Wp). (More about our electrical installation –> )

If we knew this beforehand we would have saved us the money and time for the gas installation. Instead of two fixed gas cookers and one mobile induction plate, we would do it the other way around: two fixed induction plates, one inside and one outside, and a little mobile single gas cooker as backup.

We might even still do this alteration in the future .


Enjoy!  Bon Appetit!  Smakelijk! Guten Appetit!


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12 thoughts on “Build your own expedition truck: Outdoor kitchen
  1. Is the 24-1600 Phoenix inverter not to small for an Induction cooker. Is the induction under 1600Watt?

    My wife says: Hell yeah induction we need 🙂

    1. Hi Ivan

      With our 24/1600 Victron Multiplus we can use the induction cooker without any problems, just not to full power. Which is not really needed anyway.

      Take care

      Elmer & Nicole

    2. I had a look on the available induction cookers and the one we have at home. The smallest at home has 1400W. The ones available are adjustable from 100W to 2000W. At home mostly used half so 700W. 700/24V*.5h gives 14.5Ah per dinner (inverter loss and startup not calculated). The Phoenix is big enough (1600W) and batterycapacity with solar plenty of it. So induction is indeed a good choice 🙂

  2. I think that we will be carrying a portable induction plate in our new van once the conversion is completed. Don’t get too excited Elmer it’s only a two wheel drive but it has got twin rear wheels.

    1. Hi Barry

      So nice to hear from the two of you!! You’ve got to tell us all about that new project!!

      1. Hi Nicole, Elmer we bought a 4.5 tonne Rear wheel drive Renault Master a coupljod months ago which will be converted to our spec. We still have the Adria motorhome but it will be for sale in the New year. We hope all is well with you.
        Have a good Christmas and New year.

        Barry and Marilyn

        1. Hi Barry, Marilyn

          Pictures!!! 😉 Congratulations!

          Happy holidays to the two of you!!

          Elmer & Nicole

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