Why Thermos Cooking?

It’s Easy

You don’t have to stand over a stove stirring food all day.

Cooking food in a thermos beats standing over a stove or worrying about timers or pulling something out of an oven. Even the worst cook should be able to cook food in a thermos – it’s pretty foolproof.

I like making steel cut oatmeal using Alton Brown’s (of Good Eats fame) excellent recipe, but it requires me to get out my cast iron pan, toast the oats, add water, cook for 20 minutes on the stove, add milk & salt, and then cook and stir for another 10 minutes. It’s a pain and I usually cook a triple batch and put the leftovers in the fridge because it’s more involved than I’d like.

Cooking the same oatmeal in a thermos is much easier and faster. No stovetop stirring or timing and it’s there waiting for me whenever I’m ready to eat.

It’s Efficient

Using a thermos is the most fuel efficient way to cook. Period.

A quality thermos is a marvel of heat retention. The better thermoses retain 75% of the heat even after 24 hours. So, cooking using a thermos is very efficient since the water is heated up once and kept at a high temperature within the confines of this metal vacuum.

Why should I care? It’s not like a gas stove uses more than a few pennies of electricity or gas to fix food.

That’s true, but what if your gas or electric stove isn’t working because of an outage of some kind? Or maybe you like to backpack and have limited gas to burn? Learning how to cook using a thermos is a great preparedness skill and could come in handy sometime when you most need it.

It’s Healthy

Cook with healthy whole grains without the time and trouble.

Most of the recipes we have on the site include whole food ingredients like whole wheat, quinoa, oats, millet, etc. These whole grains are in their perfect form but often aren’t eaten because of the time it takes to cook them using normal methods. A thermos, however, uses it’s heat retention properties to cook these whole grains overnight while you sleep so you get the nutrition of the whole grain with little time and effort.

11 thoughts on “Why Thermos Cooking?”

  1. Can you give me a minimum mount of time oat groats can be cooked in the thermos? In a 24 oz. wide mouthed Stanley, I heated the thermos for 5 minutes using boiling water. After the thermos was heated for 5 minutes, I poured out the boiling water and replaced it with 6oz. of uncooked oat groats and 18 ounces of boiling water. The stopper and lid were put on and the thermos was shaken vigorously.
    I wrapped the thermos in a Pendleton wool blanket and laid it on its side.
    Now, I need to know the least amount of time it will take to cook. Any ideas? my house is at a comfortable temperature and the thermos is on a cushion instead of a cold counter top.

  2. Why don’t you start with the time it would take to cook at a boil, and assume about 10-20% longer?

    If you preheat the thermos, it will keep the thermos at temperature for a long time.

    You might keep a bit more heat in, and speed the cooking time, by wrapping the thermos up, like using a tea-cosy.

  3. Does anyone know how to cook with a vacuum pot. Yes, a vacuum pot (I think it is about 4 liter in volume) I bought from Asia. It is quite popular there but unfortunately there are not a lot of recipes around. I know the most basic recipe for soup but other than that I am lost. I am hoping to use it for whole grains and stuff since it take sooooo looooonnnnngggg to make steel cut oatmeal and using my big slow cooker dries almost half of the oats in the bottom.

  4. I’m looking for a way to cook beans in a thermos. Does someone have a idea? Beans are very healty but take a long time to cook, even after a whole night of soaking.

  5. Thermos make a range of portable slow cooking Thermal Cookers that will cook all of your grains, beans, meats, vegetables and even cakes and breads.
    Look up Thermal Cooware for recipes and ideas.

  6. We purchased Thermos Shuttle Chef online a few months ago which comes with a 8 litre cook pot. This was the best purchase we made in years. We bring whatever we need to cook to a boil, take it off the heat, place it in the Thermos container and forget about it until it is cooked or until we are ready to eat it. Rice takes the same amount of time (but it doesn’t burn nor stick at the bottom). For chick peas, we bring it to a boil in the evening, put the cooking pot in the Shuttle Chef, then go to bed. It is ready the next morning.
    Needless to say, it is always in use because it makes cooking simple and trouble-free.

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