DIY solar cooker, clear video instructions

For those looking to play with solar cooking, here is an inexpensive and very clear tutorial. Not as good as a commercial cooker, but good enough to get an idea of how things work. Just be careful, my first forays into homemade cookers resulted in a fire!

I love Rose Red!

I already had everything needed to make one except for glue and oven bags, so I gave it a shot. I tried out my slapdash version today with nothing in it. It got up near 200F in less than an hour and maintained that temperature for much of the day. I'd say it should work decently as a slow cooker. Also, it gives us a way to cook without using up fuel (propane and wood are our other non-electric options).

I should emphasize that this first attempt of mine is a very crude one. At one point, I even cut the flap on the wrong half of the panel (entirely my fault for not paying close enough attention to the video -- just follow what she does). A better made version would presumably work even better.

Also, for what it's worth she has a subsequent video where she manages to bake bread with hers, and this was on a cloudy day in (I think) Utah. Now, that bread won't win any awards, but it is edible.

Oh my, it's so easy to go down the rabbit hole on solar cooking. While reading up on the BYU design (which is slightly different from the one she used in the video -- BYU's I've seen called the "funnel" design and hers is the "fun panel" design) I stumbled across something I wouldn't have thought of. Apparently, on a clear night you can use some of these designs as low-tech refrigerators by aiming them at the sky. The heat from the object radiates out to the cooker and reflects up into space, and the cooker setup keeps the object somewhat insulated from the heat radiating off of objects around it.

BYU's free ebook at has a section on this, including results from some of their tests