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How to Cook on Your Wood Stove


You know it's going to happen. We're going to have one of our famous Pacific Northwest wind storms and the power is going to go out. Depending on what neck of the woods you live in, your power may stay out for days.

When the inevitable happens, you don't have to bundle up in wool blankets or heat up cans of baked beans over your camp stove. If you own a Lopi or Avalon wood stove with a cooktop, you can simultaneously stay toasty and cook dinner.

Lopi Logo Avalon LogoA stove with a direct cooktop will run at about 600 degrees, so you'll want to put your saucepan or frying pan on a cast iron trivet to keep the heat flowing evenly. 

A stove with a cooktop will also have a warming surface, which has air circulating around it so it's not as hot as the direct cooktop. The warming surface is  is ideal for mulling cider or heating hot cocoa or soup.

In this video from our friends at Travis Industries in Mukilteo (manufacturer of Avalon and Lopi hearth products), you'll learn some good tips for cooking on your wood stove.

The video also includes some excellent tips for operating and maintaining your wood stove:

Don’t ever clean all of the ashes out of the firebox. Always leave 1- 1 ½  inches of ash bed inside the bed of the firebox. This makes it easier to start a fire because it builds up the temperature more quickly, and will establish a coal bed faster.

Door Gasket
Once a year check the door gasket -- that’s the figerglass weave rope that goes around the inside of the stove's door. If the door gasket compacts too much, you’ll bring air in around the door feeding the fire and you won’t have as much control on your air control. Depending on how often you open and close the door, you'll want to replace the door gasket annually to semi-annually.

Have a chimney sweep inspect and clean your chimney at least once a season. (Call your local Rich's store to arrange for a chimney cleaning.)

Burn dry, seasoned wood.

More Wood Stove Tips

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Stop by any of Rich's 5 Puget Sound showrooms in Lynnwood, Bellevue, Tacoma, Southcenter, and Silverdale and ask to see our Lopi and Avalon wood stoves with cooktops.