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How to make Campfire Potato Cakes

Posted by Gav Grayston.
First Published Nov 2016; updated May 2023.

Potato cakes are a really simple side dish to cook over the campfire. We show you how.

Potato Cakes are very simple to make, are something easy to do with the kids, and if you are new to campfire cooking, this recipe gets you boiling and frying using the heat of the campfire.

You could make potato cakes for breakfast or as a side dish for your main meal.

They're perhaps not the healthiest of recipes, but these are made with fresh ingredients, and so are probably better for your family than shop-bought alternatives.

What you need


There's no surprise that you need some potatoes for this recipe. You'll also need plain flour, an egg, and some oil for frying.

  • Potatoes
  • Plain Flour
  • An egg
  • Oil
  • Water
  • Optional seasoning


The equipment you have a few options. Here's what we used.

  • Your campsite might already have a fire pit to use. Ours did but we preferred using our Cazal Fire Pit.
  • You need something to boil your potatoes in. You could use a Dutch Oven in the fire's embers, or another pot that can go next to the fire or suspended on a campfire tripod. In our video below, we use an Easy Camp Enamel Pot. You can also see some stew cooking in a large Robens campfire pot, suspended on a Robens Tripod. Both are great options.
  • For draining and mashing the potatoes, we used our Collaps Colander, which is big enough for family meals, but packs down small making it easy to take camping.
  • For frying, you again have a few options. A Dutch Oven in the fire's embers would work well, and also some campfire frying pans. In our video, you see one of our kids using the long-handled frying pan. This is a good option to get your kids involved but keep them away from the campfire. We also use an enamel frying pan.
Using the long handled frying pan

Steps for Making the Potato Cakes

Step 1. Chop and boil the potatoes

Potatoes Ready for Cooking

Remember to make sure any pots of boiling water are secure and keep kids at a safe enough distance.

Cooking Potatoes and Stew

Step 2. Mash the potatoes with some flour and egg

Drain, then mash the potatoes and let them cool.

Make a well and add an egg plus any seasoning, such as salt, nutmeg, paprika, or whatever takes your fancy.

Sprinkle over some flour and mix everything together.

Shape the potato mash mixture into burger shapes.

The kids will love mashing and making these potato cakes. Just ensure you have everything you need to clean your kids up before they get their hands on the mixture.

Mash the potatoes

Step 3. Fry the potatoes

Frying the Potato Cakes

Frying over a campfire is more difficult than your cooker's hob at home. Expect a few burnt ones. We certainly had a few that were better than others.

Make up your own recipe

This is quite a simple recipe that you can change up to try something different.

For example, try mixing in some grated cheese to make cheesy potato pancakes. You could also add some chopped spring onion too.

Campfire Potato Cakes Video

Here's a quick video of our first attempt at making Campfire Potato Cakes.

YouTube Video Thumbnail