Evacuating your Home 101- Box 9 – The Kitchen box

The Kitchen Box

Container Suggestions: Rubbermaid tote, wooden box

Image of a kitchen box for camping or evacuation(If you jumped into this series on this post, you’ll want to head back to the beginning so it makes sense.  The first post in the series is here, then follow the links for the rest of the series.)

The possibilities for this box are wide open.  It can be as simple and cheap as a couple of plastic bins (remember that these tend to get brittle in the cold).  Or if you really want some functional space you can go for the time-tested, rugged wooden box.  This choice offers lots of functionality too. It’s more than just a storage box, like the camping box, with this one:

  • It’s cupboard space for utensils, plates, kitchen tools, pots and such.
  • It’s also  storage for spices, paper goods, foil, matches, flashlight etc.
  • If that wasn’t enough, you can plan your box to have a work surface.  This makes meal prep easier on your back because you won’t be bending over any more than necessary and because you have that prep surface you don’t have to bring an extra table for that.

If you’ve done any camping in your life you might remember these…(but be careful reminiscing because you’ll also remember when your eyebrows got singed or that time your canoe tipped over, or that time when the last marshmallow that was almost ready for that s’more melted a bit too much and fell into the fire).

They’ve been called all sorts of things:

  • grub box
  • chuck box
  • patrol box
  • camp kitchen
  • wanigan, and various other names.  In fact here’s another post devoted to this very thing.  In addition, I found another option for ready-made boxes here.

This Kitchen box has a set of functional cooking tools and utensils.  This is what we NEED to have to prepare meals.  We don’t NEED a food processor when a good knife will do.  This is also not the box where that gorgeous wedding silver or fancy china dishes would reside.  If you must keep those they’ll go in Box 13, as treasures.  The stuff in this box will help us set up a new functioning kitchen without having to re-buy everything.  Having this box filled and ready to go allows us to set up a kitchen in a campground, or in the middle of a field if necessary.

Do not include any electrical appliances, breakables, duplicates*, or anything else that will take extra space, time, or care.

*  I would include a back-up can-opener or two, that is one thing you don’t want to be left without.

A friend of mine has an awesome chuck-box, pictured below.  This is the box that Mary Poppins would own if she went camping.  The items in this box just keep going and going.  While it holds a ton of stuff, it is heavy and it doesn’t have a work surface.  You could use the top of the box but if you needed to get something out of the box, everything would need to be moved off first.



Chuckbox contents

You wouldn’t believe what can fit in this box.


Another view of the chuck box showing contents


You can see from this picture that there is a ton of stuff in there, and if you don’t believe me, here is the box inventory:

paper goods

  • 2 rolls paper towels
  • 2 rolls of aluminum foil
  • 1 roll or 50 garbage bags
  • 1 box zipper bags – gallon size
  • 1 box zipper bags – quart size
  • 1 box zipper bags – sandwich size

eating utensils

  • 4 metal knives
  • 6 metal forks
  • 12 metal spoons
  • 6 steak knifes
  • 6 – 10″ blue enamel plates *
  • 6 – 7″ blue enamel bowls *
  • 6 – 24 oz. blue enamel cups *
  • 4 – 8″ plastic plates

* I found a whole set of these, one or two at  a time from my local thrift store.

cooking utensils

  • 1 cheese grater
  •  1 – 16″ cutting board
  • 1 – 9″ cutting board
  • 2 ladles
  • 1 set measuring cups
  • 1 set measuring spoons
  • 2 paring knives
  • 2 carving knives
  • 1 bread knife
  • 1 large knife
  • 2 potato peelers
  • 2 serving spoons
  • 2 spatulas
  • 3 wooden spoons
  • 1 wire whisk
  • 3 mixing bowls
  • 1 strainer
  • 1 colander
  • 1 large pair of tongs
  • 1 small pair of tongs
  • 2 grease cans

pots and pans

  • 1 aluminum large stock pot (make sure these nest into each other)
  • 1 aluminum hot water pot
  • 1 aluminum fry pan
  • 2 –  9″ square aluminum cake pans
  • 2 cooling racks
  • 1 black enamel metal baking pan (2 – 3 qt size, will fit in Sun Oven)

clean up

  • 3 – 12″ x 15″ dish pans
  • 1 bottle of dish soap
  • 4 dish towels
  • 4 dish cloths and a few clothes pins
  • 3 scouring pads
  • 1 bottle Clorox cleanup wipes
  • 1 packet of wet (baby) wipes
  • 2 bottles of hand soap
  • 2 bottles of hand sanitizer

other items

  • 4 can openers
  • 1 container pepper
  • 3 containers salt
  • 1 container of garlic powder
  • 1 Dutch oven lid lifter
  • 1 tablecloth
  • 1 – 10″ – Crescent Wrench
  • 3 boxes of “strike anywhere” matches
  • 6 propane lantern mantel packages
  • 2 propane bottles
  • 2 ½ gallon mixer pitcher
  • 1 pair channel lock pliers
  • 1 pair needle nose pliers
  • 1 medium screw driver
  • 1 pair of long oven mitts, or welders gloves
  • 1 flashlight
  • 1 fly swatter
  • 1 Swedish Fire Starter Stick
  • 1 propane tree
  • 1 set of recipes

Having these things set aside and ready to go will not only make an evacuation much smoother but as a bonus, it also makes it easier to pick up and go camping for the weekend.  I love to camp but I’m not as fond of the prep and clean up for a trip to the mountains.  So, if this is ready to go when I am then all the better.


Next up, Box 10-The food box.  Yeah, we get to eat!



  1. […] The Kitchen Box – (basic cooking and eating utensils, to restock a kitchen if needed) […]

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