This article is about RV Cooking with the Blackstone Griddle and how enjoyable it can be to learn new ways to cook while traveling from location to location. If you enjoy grilling different types of proteins and vegetables, then this article is for you. We will cover the simplicity of using the Blackstone: easy to learn and cook on, travel with, and store in almost any RV.
The joys of outdoor cooking
One of the best things about living and traveling full time in our 40-foot Class A Motorhome is that we have more time to enjoy RV cooking outside on our new Blackstone griddle. When we lived in high rises in Seattle and Atlanta there were a lot of restrictions on whether you could BBQ on the outside deck, whether you had to use an electric grill. Sometimes even that wasn’t an option.
After months of working from home, being stuck inside the condo all day, every day, on Zoom meetings and conference calls, getting to finally spend some quality time outdoors, cooking up tasty food on the griddle is really a treat.
RV Cooking: Griddle vs Grill
While it takes up a decent amount of space in our RV “basement” the 22″ Blackstone Griddle is more than worth it, unlike some of the other junk we have jammed down there. (I’m looking at you, stupid pellet fire pit).
In the past we would have opted for a grill (gas or charcoal), as it was what we were familiar with. But after watching way-too-many videos on Youtube about the fun and benefits of an outdoor griddle, we decided this big RV journey of ours was the perfect time to try something new.
While the concept of griddling is not much different from traditional grilling (some form of fuel burns and heats the food from below), it turns out the addition of a cast iron cooking surface instead of an open grill changes the dynamics of both how you can cook and the quantities and amounts of new & different foods you can work with.
The closest you can get to this without the griddle would be to bring your cast iron frying pan and put it on your grill (which is not a bad substitute).
Favorite Meals and Side Dishes
While we can’t say we’ve griddled anything too exciting or exotic yet (I’m not a trained master chef like my brother), I do have some house favorites that I’m pretty good at, and my skills are definitely improving with practice. (Achievable! Bleep Bloop!)
Family favorites include:
- Ribeye Steak
- Worcestershire Smash-Burgers
- Spicy Hash Browns & Eggs
- Baby Bell Peppers (to go in so many yummy recipes)
- Bacon (of course)
- Stuffed Jalapeño Poppers (wrapped in bacon of course!)
- Grilled Cauliflower
- BBQ Chicken
- Sesame Teriyaki Salmon
The Blackstone 22” griddle creates a fantastic cooking surface, fired up using propane. For now, we’re using the small, portable green propane canisters, but we have plans to add an adapter to tap into our large onboard propane tank as soon as possible.
Working full-time from home in the rig, I usually only have time to griddle on the weekends. We plan and shop ahead to cook as much as possible all-day on Saturday or Sunday, to re-use and recycle proteins and veggies in different formats and recipes throughout the week.
It’s now become a weekly goal/challenge to come up with something new to cook on the griddle. Lately it’s been more and different vegetables, sauteed lightly in oil on the cast iron surface.
Setup & Use
Setting up is a simple process with only three parts: the cast iron surface, the base, and the adapter for the propane canister. We’re up and ready to griddle within minutes.
With two large heating elements under the cast iron, it’s easy to maintain two different temperatures when you need to cook something low and slow and others hot to sear.
Another option is to leave one side low (or even off) and cook the side dish first (e.g. vegetables, potatoes, etc.) on the heat, then push things off to the cooler side to keep warm while cooking the main protein of the meal on the hot side.
The GCI Outdoor Cook Station
To make the whole outdoor cooking process easier, we searched out a fantastic kitchen camp table we saw on one of our favorite RV Youtube channels (Eli over at RV East Coast).
The GCI Outdoor Slim-Fold Cook Station folds up nicely to fit below the rig right on top of the griddle when stored. The table has four slide-out side working surfaces, while supporting the weight of the griddle in the center. It makes it easy to keep all the cooking utensils (tongs, spatulas and water/oil squeeze bottles) and cleaning materials handy (there’s even a paper towel holder) during marathon cooking sessions. Since finding this GCI at Dick’s Sporting Goods, I’ve noticed some other great options online, too.
Since we’ve been living and traveling in the RV part-time for almost a year, and full-time for the last couple of months, we’ve leveled up our RV Cooking game in many ways — see Sherri’s article about baking in the RV Microwave Oven without blowing out the breakers!
There are so many things to learn as we travel from state to state and chat with other nomads. Cooking, indoors and out, is always high on the list of topics. Camp cooking is always a conversation starter, and a fun way to make connections with our campground neighbors, as we continue on this adventure.
Can’t wait to see what new technique or delicious idea we’ll learn during the next leg of our journey!