Wednesday, July 6, 2022


Best boondocking RV coffee makers—no hookups required

Here’s your ultimate guide to boondocking RV coffee makers and hookup-free gourmet coffee-making accessories.

Boondocking can provide you with some out-of-this-world scenery that those in RV parks will sadly never experience. One of the times it is most apparent is when you first open your RV door in the morning.

Why not pair those breathtaking views with equally impressive morning coffee? You can!

That’s right, you can become an RV barista and enjoy quality gourmet coffee anytime, anywhere.

Read on for the best RV coffee makers and coffee-making accessories. And the best part? Absolutely no hookups required!

How to make gourmet coffee in your RV while boondocking

Just because you are without hookups does not mean you should not enjoy coffeehouse quality java. And you should NOT need to turn on your generator in order to get it, or take up valuable RV real estate with a big, bulky coffee maker.

Believe it or not, some of the best RV coffee makers and coffee-making accessories require no hookups. They work so well, I even use them at home.

Amazing low-tech RV coffee makers

Depending on how you like your coffee, consider one of these inexpensive, no-hookups-required coffee makers:

French press

best rv coffee makers for bondocking, French Press

If your coffee taste runs more towards the American style (Café Americano in coffeehouse terms), a French Press is your new boondocking best friend. (Yes, I know. American-style coffee from a French Press.)

Of course, you can control how strong or weak the coffee is by how much ground coffee you use.

Put coffee grounds in the pot, pour in boiling water and let steep for a few minutes. When you’re ready to drink, push the plunger down and pour.  Easy and delicious!

Pour-over coffee brewer

best rv coffee makers for boondocking - pour over coffee makerA pour-over coffee brewer like this one is a great solution for the solo coffee drinker. The reusable stainless steel funnel fits on most coffee mugs and even thermal bottles. That’s right. You brew the coffee right into the vessel you will drink it from, one fresh cup of Joe at a time. How easy and neat is that?!

Moka pots

Best Boondocking RV Coffee Makers - Moka Pots

My favorite RV coffee maker of all is the Italian moka pot. That’s because it produces deep, dark, rich espresso, without the need for an expensive espresso machine or the electrical hookups necessary to run it.

If you like espresso, cappuccino, or any other espresso-based coffeehouse drinks, the Moka Pot has got you covered.

Moka pots are available in all sizes. You can even get a teeny tiny Baby Moka Pot that brews a mere 1.5 ounces of espresso at a time. That may work for some folks. Personally, I’d inhale an ounce and a half in seconds. Luckily, they also make large Moka pots and every size in between.

To make espresso in a Moka Pot just put water in the bottom pot. Ground coffee goes in the metal basket. Screw on the top to percolate on a stovetop burner.

Spilling the beans on the best RV coffee

Of course, good coffee is only as good as the beans that make it. Why settle for popular corporate “gourmet” coffee when you can instead simultaneously support small mom-and-pop businesses while searching out regional coffee treasures wherever you travel?

To my mind, collecting small-batch gourmet coffees to be enjoyed while traveling beats collecting refrigerator magnets any day. But you could always do both…

Across the nation, small coffee shops and artisanal roasters are producing amazing coffee. Do an internet search for coffee roasters in whatever region you are traveling. You’ll be amazed at some of the great coffees you find.

Often local roasters are even sold in local independent grocery stores. That’s how I found my most recent favorite, Humboldt Bay Coffee—although this artisanal roaster also has a visitor’s center in Eureka, CA.

Hookup-free RV coffee grinders

For the best quality coffee, you should always buy whole bean coffee and grind it just before brewing. Without hookups, you have two options:

Manual coffee grinders

manual coffee grinder for RV coffeeIt takes a little elbow grease, but small manual coffee grinders like the one pictured do a great job. You can even adjust the coarseness of the grind to best suit your coffee-making methods.

USB rechargeable coffee grinders

USB rechargeable coffee grinderFor lazier coffee hounds, you can find a variety of USB rechargeable coffee grinders. Plug into your car while driving or whenever you do have hookups or are running a generator to recharge.

Accoutrements for making gourmet RV coffee

Beyond the basic needs of procuring and grinding beans and brewing coffee, you can elevate your RV coffee experiences with these accessories.

Milk frother

Two AA batteries run the tiny milk frother pictured with the Moka Pot above. Pair these two tools together and add a sprinkling of cinnamon and you can make a coffeehouse-worthy cappuccino in your RV anytime, anywhere.

Flavorings and garnishes

A little squirt of chocolate syrup can turn your gourmet coffee into a Café Mocha. Also, you can pick up small bottles of syrups like those made by Torani in both regular and sugar-free versions, in a HUGE variety of flavors.

A can of aerosol whipped cream can add style, flavor, and fun to any coffee drink.

To quickly and easily make real whipped cream in your RV without added sugar or other unwanted ingredients, pick up one of these rechargeable whipped cream dispensers, which are also great for dessert time.

RV java junkies unite!

Use these gadgets and tips next time you serve coffee during your next RV boondocking campout. And be prepared for everyone to be amazed at how you pulled it off!



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Tom Horn
4 months ago

I can drink any kind of coffee as long as it has Carolans Irish cream in it.

4 months ago

We have made Toddy coffee for years. Brew a pound of coffee, keep the concentrate in the fridge.

Gary Stone
4 months ago

Aeropress for off-grid. A cross between a French press and a pour-over without any of the messy grounds to clean up.

4 months ago

I am far from a coffee snob, but I do like good coffee. When plugged in I use a Cuisinart Drip machine with fresh ground beans. When off grid I use a Melitta filter holder to make pour over (used to be called drip) from the same beans.

4 months ago
Reply to  Paul

I use an electric grinder – I have enough battery to do that.

4 months ago

I use a collapsible silicone pour over brewer and paper liners: inexpensive, lightweight, unbreakable, easily cleaned and stored. I should get a manual grinder…

4 months ago

Stainless steel insulated french press. Non breakable, keeps it hot, strength to suit, easy clean up, different sizes. Ours is 6 cup size. Hot water from anything that will heat water. Just like home on the road.

4 months ago

We have a Coleman drip coffee maker that we use on a Coleman stove. Love drip coffee.

Bill Richardson
4 months ago

We like our MyJoe for its simplicity.

NAna glamper
4 months ago

YOU didn’t mention good old fashioned percolators. They make good coffee, too and are simple and need no electricity.

4 months ago
Reply to  NAna glamper

Exactly. Other gadgets not necessary unless you want a gadget that does the same thing as your perc.

4 months ago
Reply to  NAna glamper

have used a percolator for over 20 years and love it!!!!!

4 months ago
Reply to  maggie

Count us in on percolators too. I’ve a small one for one and a large one for the group.
When I’m the only one and it’s too hot for the stove I grab my trusty old 12 volt percolator and brew up a couple of cups.

Deborah Mason
4 months ago

We carry options – French press, AeroPress, and CafeJo. CafeJo will take grounds or K-cups. For us the only downside to AeroPress is having to have finely ground coffee. The small circle of filter paper + “pick” of grounds is all the waste there is. For plugged in days, we also have a small drop pot. Gotta have that morning coffee!

Zane D.
4 months ago

You left out the AeroPress

4 months ago

😉 Could it be we have some coffee snobs among us? We use a French press, an insulated one, and a expresso machine at home. Roast our own beans too. Just a hobby thing. Also love the idea of trying out local roasters.

John Williams
4 months ago

For the single cup, no power, hand grinder set up, you missed the best and easiest to clean up afterwards, the Aeropress. By far the best quality cup and way faster to clean up afterwards.

Mic Brenoel
4 months ago

You omitted the percolator; use it indoors or out and makes good coffee and a familiar “old” sound

4 months ago
Reply to  Mic Brenoel

Agreed – nothing like a percolator over an open fire or just the outdoor grill!

4 months ago

Article should be titled single cup coffee brewing. Don’t say the ‘best’ of anything and then completely ignore the best solution. Yes a percolater!

The cowboy coffee pot was probably the first and is still the best boondocking coffee solution on the planet!

You can get them anywhere from 4 to 12 cups, and starting way under 20 bux.

Plus it makes better coffee is much easier than the 3 messy solutions offered by the author.

Mic Brenoel
4 months ago
Reply to  TIM MCRAE

Exactly my sentiments

jim R
4 months ago
Reply to  TIM MCRAE

I like french pressed coffee, but it’s a mess to clean up when your boondocking. I use an old enamel percolator and drink it out of a tin cup — makes me feel like a cowboy!!!

Gregg G.
4 months ago
Reply to  jim R

Another vote for the stovetop percolator… In or out of the TT

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