Relaxshax's Blog

My hand’s on fire! Solar Cooking/Heat 101 With My New Rig…
May 20, 2010, 9:59 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Hot Pot cooker from here's a case where SOLAR GLARE in a photo is actually a GOOD thing (it means this lil' sucker's working!)

So I recently picked up a solar cooker “The hot pot” (from – which comes with a multi-sided, foldable, aluminum reflecting cradle, in which you sit a double walled (one nested within another) cook pot.  I do have to say, as it sits outside my house right now, doing all the work, I’m VERY impressed with its quality and ease of use. Right out of the box, I was set-up and running in literally, 60 seconds, and for once(!), as opposed to what you see online, the product was actually WAY BETTER built and more durable than what I had expected.

The HOT POT has only been sitting in my front yard for 30-40 minutes now, and when I went outside to check it, and touched it- YEOOWCH! It was hot as all “heck”! So seems like its working REAL well (and presently cooking a 3 pound pot roast for tonights dinner- which other wise would take 3 hours of electicity(!) in the oven).

As I keep messin’ around with solar cooking (and its ties to low-impact (low dough) living, I’ll be harpin’ in to let you know the progress. I’ce additionally completed my own hokey, homemade solar cooker (complete with a $1.00 tag sale mirror), which I’ll post more on, after I toy around with it a little. Ultimately, the homemade cooker will be built into my new micro-shelter creation (on its roof). Here’s one of the stage-shots of the cooker (which’ll yup, probably find its way into my NEXT micro-housing book).

Homemade Solar Cooking Rig (in the works)- made from TRASH/leftovers

This cooker above (now almost complete) was made for under $10.00 (actually, a grand total price of under $6.00!). All the wood is from salavaging/dumpster-diving/curb-culling (Hey, I think I just coined a new term!), and the two glass plates that will cover the cooker were grabbed from the roadside as well (old glass doors for a stereo/soundsystem rack). So far, when testing it, WITHOUT the reflective mirror, and without yet sealing/gasketing the way the glass sits (to prevent heat loss), this oven has reached 225 degrees- so I have some work to do- but am looking forward to the challenge.

And remember, the EASIEST solar heat utilization of all (save electricity and money) is to line dry your clothes! Try it- even just a few times this summer! And spread the word….


9 Comments so far
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So how did the pot roast come out? I’ve been thinking about solar ovens for quite some time (I blame Ed Begley) but have never read/heard how the food turns out.

Comment by Kay in KCMO

Looks pretty cool, but I’m not buying the part about solar cooking being more nutritious. Cool, yeah, that I’ll go for.

Comment by Uncle Enore

i think it may have something to do with less carbonization (if such a terms exists- lol) of the food. Charred foods and carbon not being so great for you. I’m curious myself and will look into it…

Comment by relaxshax

I don’t know why Kent put a link to this on the Tiny House Blog … nothing was really told about solar cooking nor about the solar cookers. Only a little in the blog that linked to the S.O.S cooker. Your drawings ARE interesting.

Comment by Freth

I don’t see any “solar” links to me from Kent. Just other one’s on my hickshaw cabin and another video on Maine Cabins/Island I shot? You sure? I’ll go recheck…..thanks

Comment by relaxshax

Your home built one looks good, but heavy. I’ve made two cardboard box ones and now own the Sun Oven, that Cadillac of manufactured ones. It gets up to 325° or more. Box ones made it to 250°. I now use the box one for melting old candles to make my tea bag firestarters. See them all at
Thanks for the review of the hot pot.

Comment by Amanda

yeah- didn’t want to go the cardboard route because of lack of durability though- and this cooker wasn’t really designed to be portable (it’ll attach to a swivel mount to one of my future cabins- with and add-on reflective mirror). All in all, it was a means to make use of some thin junk plywood I had. So far, without the additional reflective mirror to grab added sunlight- the cooker has made it to the 250 degree range. All things considering (esp. the $1.00 price), its worked out fairly well.

Comment by relaxshax


We are producing an educational PowerPoint presentation by a non-profit that promotes alternative energy and sustainability. It will be used by staff and interested community members to educate people on how to move beyond dependence on fossil fuels. The video version will be used in those cases where there is no presenter.

We would like your permission to include the photo of your solar cooker, and would include a credit at the end of the presentation. Since this is a production for a non-profit organization and will be used for educational purposes, they can offer no monetary compensation.

Once it is complete, we would send you a link to the final presentation.

Thank you!

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kate brouillet
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Comment by Kate Brouillet

Sorry I missed this- this blog has been inactive for over a year- the new one is over at

Comment by relaxshax

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