Secret RV Kitchen Hacks Make Cooking & Cleaning More Fun!

Living and camping in an RV oftentimes present unique challenges in the kitchen. From prepping meals, cooking, cleaning and even organizing kitchen storage items, these secret RV kitchen hacks help ease you into living in tiny quarters while creating great tasty meals in your RV or at your campsite!

RV Kitchen Hacks - RV Cooking and Cleaning Tips - Always On Liberty

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RV Kitchen Hacks Makes Cooking & Cleanup in Your RV More Functional and Fun!

Plastic Zipper Bags

Since we’ve been RVing, we’ve found that plastic zipper bags are our friend. While yes, plastic Ziploc bags aren’t exactly the most earth friendly, they do offer convenience.

Plus, they save water when you’re boondocking or camping off grid because they don’t require dishwashing.

But, I’m happy to say that we have found some eco-friendly biodegradable gallon size and smaller quart size zipper bags that are actually made from plant based materials. Our only negative is that they’re a little more pricy than regular plastic storage bags.

Aside from that, I use them for everything! From mixing a salad, marinating meats, mixing pancake or cake batters and kneading cookie dough, they are my go-to!

But all is not lost even when using cheaper bags. They are great trash receptacles to use for wet garbage because they seal in the contents securely.

Plastic zipper bags can also be used in the bathroom and bedroom as well. If we know we’re not going to get to a laundromat in the very near future, we will put our smelly clothes inside a 2-gallon zipper bag (or 2…or 3…) so our RV doesn’t smell like a stinky locker room.

And speaking of those giant zipper bags, Dan even keeps a few in his RV tool kit to keep his clean rags and things he doesn’t want to subject to humidity.

Makeshift Mixing Bowl

Lakanto Banana Nut Muffin and Bread Mix Packet - RV Kitchen Hacks

We’ve found that our favorite Keto-friendly Lakanto muffin mixes come in a thicker grade plastic type pouch rather than a thin plastic bag tucked inside the cake box.

Instead of dirtying a bowl, I simply add the water or milk and egg right into the pouch and mix using a small rubber spatula.

So, be on the lookout for dry-mix packages like this. Now, if you find the pouch is actually too small to mix in, you could always use a gallon size plastic zipper bag instead.

Cupcake and Muffin Cups

Speaking of muffins, if you have a small RV like us,  you’ll find that you just don’t have space to store a big metal or even silicone muffin pan.

Now, when we had our big honkin’ fifth wheels, I made muffins in a regular 12-cup silicone cupcake pan which worked amazingly!

However, now that we live in a tiny 25′ RV with very little kitchen storage space, I had to find something more compact but did the same job.

So, one of my secret RV kitchen hacks is to get some individual silicone cupcake cups instead!

The secret to making the muffins or cupcakes slip out without falling apart is to spray the bottom of each silicone cup with non-stick spray before filling them with batter. But, that requires me to wash the pan. Which when we’re boondocking and measuring every precious drop of water, that presents a problem.

So, I just line the baking cups with disposable foil cupcake liners instead. The foil, as opposed to paper liners, don’t leave a greasy residue in my silicone cups.

Then place all of your silicone muffin cups on a small round pizza pan if using the carousel feature in your convection oven. Or, you can place them on a rectangle cookie sheet for your regular oven.

Oh, and by the way, another RV kitchen hack idea! These silicone cups can be used for more than baking! They are great for using as coasters for those skinny beverage cans, opening new jars, snack and dip bowls, condiment bowls, etc.

My ultimate favorite silicone cups:

Jumbo Smooth Side Silicone Baking Cups

Standard Size Smooth Side Silicone Baking Cups

OXO Good Grips Silicone Baking Cups

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No Messy Baking

While we’re on the subject of baking, anything I can’t stand is cleaning cookie sheets or baking pans with baked on food. Especially in our RV that has such a tiny sink, this can be a royal pain in the…!

Now, if I were to own a home where space and water isn’t a concern, I’d surely use a silicone baking mat on my cookie sheet that prevents food and drippings from sticking to the pan.

However, living in an RV with those restrictions force me to find an alternative.

So, another of my secret RV kitchen hacks is parchment paper! It totally eliminates messy cleanups. Instead of using non-stick spray, I just cut a sheet of baking paper according to the pan size and VOILA!

And, there’s virtually no trash waste! It’s safe and eco-friendly to throw in the fire pit or fold up tiny to fit in your small trash can.

No Paper Plates

RV Kitchen Hacks - Deli Baskets 2
Paper plates are expensive and take up precious space and weight in your RV.

So, instead of packing in bulky stacks of paper plates, I found serving our sandwiches and chips in deli baskets with food grade liners is more far economical and eco-friendly!

When we’re finished eating, we just fold or wad up the paper and throw just the paper away. The paper takes up far less trash space opposed to cardboard paper plates.

And just like the parchment baking paper I mentioned prior, the deli basket paper liners are campfire friendly and easier to compost.

Besides, this way of serving lunch is more fun and our food psychologically tastes like our meal came from a cafe deli!

Storing Kitchen Wraps, Bags & Foil

RV kitchens are small to begin with. To find a conducive place to store all of your boxes of kitchen wraps and bags is challenging because we just don’t have ample drawer space.

So, what’s a girl like me to do? Find a useful RV kitchen hack that works well with any size kitchen!

I’ve found the best way to my foil and plastic wrap is to stand them up vertically in a magazine rack! I call it my ultimate ‘kitchen rack hack’.

I keep our wrap rack in the cabinet under our kitchen sink so they’re easily accessible yet out of the way. The best thing is they stay neatly tucked in wedged between the inside cabinet wall and our collapsible dish pans.

Use a Multi-Use Wash Basin

RV Kitchen Hacks - Dish Pan Wash Basin

Did I just say collapsible dish pans? Why yes I did! But, did you know we those dish pans for more than just washing dishes? We use them for loading our condiments and grilling supplies to take outside!

And since they’re wonderfully portable, they are great for cleaning your messy grill parts outside instead of dragging them inside.

One important tip though, wipe off excess grease and food prior to washing if you throw your gray water on the ground. The last thing you want is to attract bears and other unwelcome wildlife to your campsite.

Keep Your Seasonings and Rubs Dry

Glass Herbs and Spice Jars on Shelf

During our first year on the road in our RV, we quickly learned that humidity and condensation wreaked havoc on my jars of herbs and spices. They started to mold or cake to hardness like cement. I was not a happy camper because some of the spices were hard to get and dry rubs I acquired on the road were expensive!

So, with a bit of trial and error trying to find airtight spice storage containers, I learned there was more to it than just the container itself.

One day, while opening a brand new spice jar, I noticed a tiny little packet inside the jar that read ‘do not eat’. Unfamiliar with what it was, I looked it up.

Thus, I found the perfect RV kitchen hack that RVers and boat life peeps will absolutely LOVE! Those little anti-moisture packets help keep our herbs, powdered spices, dry rubs and seasonings dry.

Now I put them in every kitchen storage container in our kitchen you can imagine! Now, no more caked powdered smoothie mixes, moldy nuts, and yucky tasting coffee or tea!

And for bigger containers, we put larger size anti-moisture packs inside our charcoal or pellet container to keep it dry as a bone until next lighting. We even keep a couple desiccant packs inside our dry cat food container to keep moisture from tainting our kitty kibble.

✰ RELATED Spice Racks & Spice Storage Ideas for RV & Boat

Eliminate Convection Oven Moisture

RV Kitchen Convection Oven

Speaking of moisture in our RV, one of my biggest pet peeves is our convection microwave oven is not properly vented to the outside. Therefore, moisture from cooking builds up inside the microwave that causes odor and mold.

So, to remedy that problem, I toss in a desiccant pack inside the oven after wiping the inside dry. The packet acts like a little dehumidifier absorbing any residual moisture when the oven is not in use.

However, mistakes are to be made. Don’t be like me and forget to take it out before using your microwave or convection oven! 

I also use those dehumidifying packets in all of our kitchen drawers to keep moisture out of your silverware utensils, metal pots and pans. There’s even some where I store our placemats, pot holders and clean dishtowels so they don’t get damp and smelly.

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Load Up a One-Trip 

Picnic Table Caddy with Condiments and Paper Towels

One thing that grates on my grilling nerves is having to go in and out of our RV a million times to bring out and take in our picnic supplies. You know the drill; armfuls of condiments, spices, silverware, plates, napkins, paper towels, thongs, you name it!

While yes, I do use my collapsible dishpans to load up some of our stuff, I’ve found a great picnic table caddy or BBQ caddy that’s easily portable and you can keep out on the table.

In fact, this is one of my best RV kitchen hacks that is not only functional and keeps everything organized, but it’s damn cute! Everything is all in one place for easy grabbing to go in for the night.

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Wrapping up 

Woman Pouring Hot Water in Cup in Her RV Kitchen

As you see, these RV kitchen hacks aren’t just about staying organized. They are about putting the fun into function in the RV kitchen or boat galley. Even better, some are contributing to helping the environment and conservation.

While some of these seem simple, I’ve found them to be quite innovative for the limitations of space and time.

Because less time you spend inside re-organizing and cleaning, it allows you more time to spend outdoors enjoying the reason you’re there in the first place…camping!

Other RV Kitchen Hacks

 Top 12 Space-Saving Kitchen Tools Every RVer and VanLifer Needs!

 Absolute Best Small Kitchen Appliances for RVs and Boats

 RV Interiors: 10 Colorful Ways to Brighten Up Your RV Kitchen

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