Dutch Oven Showdown!


For many troops, Dutch Oven Cooking is as much a part of Scouting as tying knots. Nothing quite compares to the aroma of a completed cobbler or a dutch oven pizza. It takes a lot of skill and know-how to prepare these amazing dishes but it can make even the most basic camp out something memorable.

Leaders! The time has come to put your skills to the test and show what you've got. At the Centennial Jamboral next week we will be holding a Dutch Oven Cook Off. Bring your gear and your A- game and show everyone which troop eats the best food on their campouts! 

The official competition starts at the conclusion of the World Record Gagaball game on Saturday and will go until noon. After that there will be demonstrations on ways to improve your dutch oven game.

The festivities will take place just outside the Eastern door of the Indoor arena.


1. Teams of at least two people may compete. Only team members are allowed in cooking area. NO EXCEPTIONS. One team member must remain in the cooking area at all times.

2. Know and practice safe food handling procedures. 

3. Contestants must provide a copy of recipes used. The recipes should include all the
ingredients used with complete cooking instructions, including Dutch Oven size and number served. Recipes should include a complete list of all ingredients in order of use and complete instructions on how to prepare them, including the final meat temperature. All copyright recipes must include the source. You may provide copies of your recipes for the public if you’d like.

4. Contestants are expected to provide their own Dutch Ovens, ingredients, cooking utensils, and preparation items. All ingredients must be combined, chopped, sliced, diced and cooked on site including garnishes and marinades. For safety reasons, no ingredients prepared or processed at home are allowed. Charcoal must be used in an appropriate container so as to protect grounds and facilitate clean up. Gas or propane stoves are not allowed, but may be used to start charcoal and heat water for cleanup. Minimum Dutch Oven size is 10 inches for all judged dishes. 

5. Contestants will be participating in a two pot cook off which includes one main dish, and one dessert presented in the Dutch Oven or on the lid. 

6. All cooking must be done in an approved (factory made) Dutch Oven or cast iron cookware. All cooked foods must be presented to the judges with the exception of excess gravies and sauces. Removing burnt or undercooked sections of food will lead to disqualification. Only competing recipes shall be cooked in the cook off area by contestants. Side items such as butter, jam or sauces should not be presented to the judges' table unless, specifically, listed in the recipe and prepared on site. 

7.  Battery operated or electrical devices, such as mixers or blenders, are not allowed in the preparation of food. Digital thermometers and digital scales are allowed. 

8. Because entries may be provided as samples to the spectators certain health considerations apply:

  • A. Meat must be purchased from a source that carries USDA inspected meat.

  • B. Use cooler for all perishables. Keep hot foods above 140° and cold foods below 40°.

  • C. Tasting utensils must be washed immediately after use. Wash cutting boards between meats and vegetables to avoid cross-contamination.

  • D. Use a washbasin, wet wipes or hot water as appropriate while preparing ingredients. Be sure to use separate containers of water for hand washing, preparation of ingredients and washing utensils.

  • E. Keep preparation area and all utensils clean.

  • F. There should be no finger licking.

  • G. Only foods in a state of preparation may be out on the table.

  • H. Internal temperature of meats must reach the USDA recommendation.



Field judges will check the internal temperature of meat prior to judging. 

9. All foods submitted for judging should be displayed in the pot or on the lid. For sanitation concerns, please do not display foods on fabric. Appropriate utensils must be presented with the dishes.

10. If you choose to Garnish.....Garnishing should be SIMPLE, complement the dish being presented, and not distract from it. This is not a garnishing contest. Garnishes should be edible.

11. Use good fire safety practices. Keep yourself and the public safe. All cooking must be done at least 18 inches above the ground.

12. Please wear clothing appropriate for activity. Know and practice safe food handling
procedures. Food service gloves and some type of hair restraint (hat, hairnet, etc) should be worn when handling food and the use of an apron is encouraged.

13. Interaction with the public is highly encouraged. Registration is considered a release statement for all photographs and recipes that are used during the competition.

14. Please do not eat in the food preparation area. 

15. All teams are expected to bring their own equipment, pop-up tents, tables, pots, dish and hand wash-stations (including hot water), etc.

16. Cooking area must be left clean. All charcoal, food, garbage must be removed at the end of event. 

17. Entries will be judged on the following: preparation, appearance, taste, aroma, quality, overall
appeal, Dutch Oven technique, cleanliness, and sportsmanship.

18. All contestants are expected to read and abide by the foregoing rules and agree to abide by the decisions of the judges.

This Dutch Oven Cook Off and its sponsors are not responsible for accidents or damage incurred during the cook off. Dress for the weather. Work smart, work safe, and have fun.