One of the difficulties in becoming a full-time RV family, when you are moving from a home to an RV 5th wheel, travel trailer or motorhome, is that you lose a bunch of kitchen space. Losing all of that kitchen space really hurts at first, but over the months and years, I have found a few RV Kitchen Accessories and Gadgets that have helped me to cook efficiently in my kitchen.
When you have growing kids, being able to cook effectively is important. We simply cannot afford to eat out a lot and besides, I love to cook at home. These are things that I use just about every day and could not live without. All of them do BIG jobs and take up small spaces. Perfect for mobile living.
Here is our list of must have kitchen items that we recommend you have when starting your RV life.
RV Kitchen Must Haves
No set of RV cooking supplies is complete without stackable measuring cups and spoons. I found these cups for our kitchen on Amazon. I have used plastic measuring cups before and I just don’t like them. They get chewed up in the drawer and look all worn out. But having heavy traditional stainless steel cups adds weight, something we always try to avoid.
So I was overjoyed when I found these Bellemain Stainless Steel cups. They really hold up well to daily beatings in the utensil drawer. They are accurate AND they are lightweight which is very important for mobile living. Someone found just the right thickness to keep them lightweight, but also durable. They even double as circle templates for art class. Great set!
If you DO dig plastic measurers, here is a nice set. It is quite complete as it has about every possible size of measuring cup and spoon and would also work well to round out your set of kitchen gadgets.
Stackable Mixing Bowls:
I LOVE my stackable mixing bowls, honestly I pretty much use them every single day for storing fruit or mixing eggs. They really have become essential kitchen accessories! These are a great set of bowls that can handle being tossed around in an RV – this is important to us RVers.
They are melamine so they will not break, but again are lightweight. My set comes with snap-on airtight lids that won’t let liquid out – even if you turn them upside down. I have used mine to take dishes to the beach for a picnic, or to carry food to a cook-out.
The size range is great so they can be used for thawing out large roasts or pork loins or to mix up small quantities of Franks “Super Secret Honey Mustard BBQ Sauce.” (Hint- it has honey, mustard, and BBQ sauce in it- sorry babe).
This is a great little set of stackable bowls by Joseph Joseph. The set comes with 2 bowls, a sieve strainer, a colander, and 5 measuring cups. I love that they include a sieve in here that is stackable, that’s a huge space saver in an RV.
This is an awesome set of stainless steel stackable bowls. These would work perfectly for storing fruit or for your baking needs. I love that they have 6 bowls included in this set, I know for me there are times when I need more than the 3 bowls I currently have.
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Cutting boards are essential kitchen tools for RV living. It is really important to have a set that is versatile and lightweight as you will use them inside and out.
Our favorite Fu Store cutting boards set comes with 4 boards marked and color-coded for vegetables, fish, fruit, and meats. These are a little thicker but we like that. They are still very light and easy to store, I love that each board is labeled for a particular food group. I need the reminder lol!
This set is really nice with a bamboo board and seven plastic boards inside. It won’t save a lot of kitchen counter-top space but has a ton of great uses. The boards are super thin. We love wine and cheese so this bamboo board is perfect for us and again it fits nicely in our 5th wheel.
RV Kitchen Utensils
Every RV kitchen needs the best camping utensils. You want to cover all of your bases without having a lot of duplication as space is tight.
I bought this set when we were moving into our rig, I was pleasantly surprised at the different utensils included in the set. I never had a tongs in my kitchen at home and now it’s my favorite utensil! This set has any kitchen utensil you will need in my opinion.
If you use the microwave a lot, and chances are that you do if you are living on the road, you must have a plate cover. Such a simple thing that saves SO MUCH time and effort. This is one of those things that you wonder why you didn’t have one 5 years ago.
Cast Iron Cooking:
There is nothing like cooking on cast iron. I know we are always harping on things being lightweight, but when it comes to cooking outdoors, you want to be cooking with cast iron!
This Lodge cast iron skillet is one of the must-have RV kitchen essential. Cast iron cooks more evenly and lasts forever. It is also safe to use over a campfire or on the grill. Do keep in mind they are heavier than regular pans.
I like that I can fit all my vegetables and fruits in one strainer to wash them!
Another wonderful product that saves space in your camper kitchen. The handles slide out to provide a platform to hang it over the sink- hands-free operation. Then the whole thing flattens out for easy storage.
If the above strainer is too big for your motorhome, these might work instead. I have a pair of these also, I’ve had them for years. I use them when I don’t need the bigger strainer. They fit easily in my cabinet.
Space Saving Knife Holder:
Someone was thinking of tiny living spaces when they came up with these genius RV kitchen accessories!
Friends of ours use this space saving knife holder and it works beautifully. This steel wall mounted knife holder will save you a ton of space. Space is always at a premium in an traveling kitchen so why not use the walls?
One of the first things we purchased was a set of melamine dishes, I love that I don’t have to worry about them breaking on RV travel day.
Same applies to your glasses. RV glasses take a good deal of pounding so get a set that will be safe indoors or outdoors and you won’t have to worry about them.
These cups are perfect to use around the campground when the kids are running around. They ensure that we always have cold water when we need it. I purchased one of these for everyone, I love that it came with a straw.
Acrylic Wine Glasses:
We love nothing more than having a glass of wine at the weekend, we have tried several glasses and these are our favorite by far. If you love wine as much as we do, try using a wine aerator, it enhances the flavor of the wine in a big way! Trust me.
We love drinking wine from actual wine glasses. These glasses are stackable and we never have to worry about them on travel day. They can literally be thrown anywhere and they will be fine. We prefer stemless because they won’t get blown over by the wind :).
Dish Drying Rack
This is an awesome accessory to have in your RV kitchen. It is collapsible for each storage and fits nicely in your sink so you can dry your dishes off the countertops.
Space Saving Pots and Pans
Although we now live in a tiny home, we still use pots and pans when cooking but I don’t have a lot of room to store them and that’s why I love these stackable pots and pans.
RV Kitchen Essentials
We LOVE smoothies. A bag of frozen fruit medley, some yogurt, a bit of milk and it’s “Happy Days” in the Foley camp. The kids always get excited about smoothies and it is a great way to get a TON of nutrition into them without the usual WAH-WAH that comes with nutritious foods. I also use the Bullet for dicing up veggies and making homemade hummus.
Then there is, of course, the rare “margarita night” with hubby. Those always end well! For many smaller campers or travel trailers, where space is really at a premium, the smaller “Bullet” is an awesome space saver.
Many people are coffee drinkers. We drink tea here so a coffee maker is not a priority in our RV kitchen. That being said, we did start our adventures with a Keurig. It made a nice cup of tea, it was just too big for the rig.
With very little counter space, it didn’t make sense (although I did hang onto it for almost a year!). Besides, those little K Cups can get kind of expensive. So we went back to tea bags!
I love my Hamilton Beach electric kettle. This is a nice little kitchen gadget. It heats up just enough water for 2 LARGE sized cups of tea. It is lightweight and the heating base is separate from the pot, so you can just pick it up and move around without having to unplug.
This sits at the top of our most used RV cooking supplies. I know, I know. So many of you are using Instant Pot. I don’t know why I can’t get on board with those but we did get one a while back. I hated it! I couldn’t figure out how to use it, I did try I promise, but alas, we weren’t meant to be.
Here’s the Instant Pot that everyone loves, who doesn’t want to come home and have a meal on the table in minutes, with one of these you can do that!
I just checked and this Instant Pot has over 5000 5 star reviews, maybe I need to give it another go!
RV Water Filter:
Even though this is an outdoor gadget, the water you are concerned about is what is coming out of your kitchen faucet for drinking and cooking. Ensure fresh clean water with an in-line filter by Camco. This is a must-have accessory.
RV Accessories- Kitchen Storage Ideas
Living on the road means you have very little storage space. With only a few drawers available in the typical travel trailer of fifth wheel, organization is very important, so drawer organizers are necessary rv accessories. Here are some of the best drawer organizers we have found.
Drawer Organization Ideas:
I recommend this my my fellow RVers all the time. This is such a space saver and it holds a lot more than I thought it would. WE have had ours for over three years now and it works great.
This over the door storage unit is a priceless organizational accessory. We use it to store all of our snacks, crackers, potato chips, granola bars, etc. They all go into this easy storage. Since it hangs on 2 hooks over the door, it can also be easily moved onto a kids bunk for travel days and then hung back up upon arrival. The amount it holds is amazing so it is fantastic for expanding the kitchen pantry a bit.
One of the big space issues in an RV kitchen is there is very little space for the garbage can. They are so big in relation to the rest of the kitchen, but full-timing you don’t really use any LESS garbage. There are some good options out there that will help save some space.
RV Outdoor Kitchen Ideas
Lodge 4 Qt Cast Iron Camp Dutch Oven is a portable camp stove pot that’s ideal for campfire cooking. It features a flanged lid for hot coals and inverts for use as a griddle. The integral legs allow the oven to sit perfectly over hot coals. Bail handle for use with tripod. The flanged lid holds hot coals and inverts for as griddle.A must have for any camping kitchen!
This Lodge 8 Qt Dutch Oven is a staple if you plan to cook outdoors. Fire up a big old pan of campfire beans and watch the neighbors wander over. Lodge is the best name in cast iron and the only name we buy. There is nothing like a nice Dutch Oven Dump Cake to finish off a great day at the campsite.
For a good outdoor eating set up, you will need a sturdy folding table. Even large RV outdoor kitchens are limited in space for your kitchen gadgets and accessories. So a sturdy table that folds away for transport, is worth it’s weight in gold.
We have used this portable folding picnic table for over three years now and love it. It fits all of us at mealtimes and the kids can use it for arts and crafts. Then it folds into a case for storage. It is not the most sturdy thing on the planet, but it has held up really well for us.
Outdoor RV living equals grilling. A good grill is the backbone of any camping kitchen and the Coleman Road Trip line provides the perfect RV cooking platform. Whether you are in a motorhome, 5th wheel, or even a pop-up camper, there is a Coleman sized right for you.
This Coleman grill is really great for camping. It has a large cooking surface and folds up small for easy transport. This is the grill we use and love. We’ve had it for over two years now with no complaints.
For those who want an open flame, but a little more control than the open fire, a camping stove is just the ticket. All the convenience of the indoor stove, but you can stay outside with everyone else. There are so many models to choose from, but here are a couple of the Best Sellers on Amazon.
If you really want to “Big Dog” (or are planning on cooking a really big dog) this Camp Chef 2 burner model is for you. Each burner puts out 30,000 BTU’s and, as part of the Camp Chef Modular System, there are all kinds of accessories you can get to go with it. Propane tank NOT included.
For ultimate portability while backpacking or just packing light, these Etekcity Ultralight Portable camp stoves are fantastic. They can hold pots up to 7″ in diameter and fold up small for easy transport in their included carrying case.
Depending on which type of grill or stove you choose, don’t forget to load up on fuel. Whether propane, or butane, you’ll be cooking with gas!
I can’t tell you how many times I find my kitchen tongs outside in the outdoor kitchen lol. Make sure that hubbie has the proper utensils to cook outside so he’s not using yours!
A good grilling setup is nothing without the grilling utensils. A complete and portable set of RV grill tools is a necessity for any camping trip. I bought this Home-Complete setfor Father’s day one year. It comes with a carrying case, this keeps everything in one place. They are stainless steel so they not only look good, but are really durable.
We just purchased these when we bought our dutch oven and so far they have been well worth the money!
There is nothing better than having a fire and cooking up some s’mores. These marshmallow forks make doing that so easy and are so much fun for the kids.
Outdoor Utensil Organizer:
I waited so long to get one of these because I thought it was an unnecessary waste of space. Boy was I wrong!
I can’t tell you how many times I ran in and out of the rig to get another fork or more napkins. This silverware caddy is awesome and an absolute essential. It helps to keep your utensils organized so they are all together when you need them. Your outdoor table will stay neat and clean and the napkins will stay in place.
Outdoor Garbage Holder:
Again we waited too long to pick up one of these garbage holders. They are super useful when you are RV camping.
Last but not least, this portable garbage can is for your indoor OR outdoor space. It collapses easily for storage and transport during moving days. They come in very handy for keeping the place clean.
- We wrote a popular blog post on the Ultimate Guide to RV Accessories for every aspect of RV Living. These are must-have RV Accessories you will need as you start enjoying RV Living.
- For the lighter side of camping, see our list of fun RV accessories that will keep you and your family in smiles.
- Ashley Mann from RV Inspirations wrote an awesome article on 7 Organization Hacks For RV Kitchen Cabinets. Her site is a super place to find articles on making your RV feel like home!
- Campers Inn RV did a great article entitled “5 Questions to Ask When Choosing an RV Kitchen.” It gives some great advice for the RV shopper in sizing your kitchen correctly.
- The Dyrt published an article on setting up a camping kitchen. Their site reviews campgrounds all over the nation.
So there you have it, our list of 33 RV Kitchen Accessories that we cannot live without. Funny how different that list looks from what it would be in a house! But these 33 items save space, are lightweight, save time and allow us to be out in the great outdoors for more of our time. That is the whole point, right? SO try a few of these on your next camping trip.
What RV Kitchen Accessories could you not live without?