Don’t have a camp oven? No worries…simply dig a hole and cook it in the ground…Really? Can it be that easy?  It’s always an adventure when we go free camping with our local mates Rob, Lauren, Matilda and Olivia from Not Board Around Oz – Unlike us, they have been camping for their whole lives and head up to some of the gorgeous free camps on the Murray (only 30 minutes from home) at every opportunity they get!  This time we were in for a real treat!

“Let’s cook the lamb in the dirt!”


Yup…if you have followed Caravanning with Kids for a while, you will know that we do a lot of pre-meal prep when we head away (check out our Meal Preparation article here... “I don’t want to cook when I am on holidays!)… We have never cooked in a camp oven, explored with an Oz Pig or played with any cast iron.  However, when Rob started talking about digging a hole and cooking in it, WITHOUT a cast iron pot thingy, we were all super excited.

Dig a hole and cook a big chunk of lamb? Is it that easy?

It’s called a Hāngi – Hāngi (Māori pronunciation: [ˈhaːŋi]) is a traditional New Zealand Māori method of cooking food using heated rocks buried in a pit oven, also called an umu. It is still used for large groups on special occasions.

Or…a super easy campfire Aussie version!…and it really is this easy…

  1. Hot coals
  2. Dig a deep hole (50-60cm)
  3. Shovel in some Hot coals
  4. Pop the meat on top (wrapped in lots of layers of foil so you dont damage it when you dig it out!)
  5. Cover it with hot coals
  6. Pop the ‘lid on’  – cover it with dirt or sand
  7. WAIT…(ours was 3kg of boned out lamb and it was in there for just over 3 hours)
  8. Dig it up
  9. ENJOY!

O…M…G – this was possibly the BEST lamb we have ever eaten!!

Dig a Hole!

Pop in a base of HOT COALS!

Chuck in the MEAT wrapped in foil!

Cover with HOT coals and then fill the hole with DIRT or SAND!

WAIT! ..and don’t forget where you buried it!

Dig it up!

Fingers crossed…

PERFECTION! …and soooooooo easy!

Have you cooked in the ground?

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