As part of the how to build a solar cooker series, here are some easy to follow instructions showing you how to build a pizza box solar cooker. These instructions were used for a children’s solar club in Birmingham, UK last year.
What You’ll Need
- Recycled pizza box – Black construction paper
- Aluminium foil & insulation – Clear plastic sheets
- Non-toxic glue, tape, scissors, ruler, paint, marker
- Food (pizza, chocolate brownies, hot dogs, marsh mellows)
How to Make Your Pizza Box Oven
Mark a 3cm border on all four sides of the top of the pizza box. Cut along three sides leaving the line along the back of the box uncut. (Diagram #1)
Create a flap by gently folding back along the uncut line to form a crease. (Diagram #2)
Tape the aluminium foil to the inside bottom of the flap, shiny side out. Smooth out any wrinkles and glue into place. Important- Ensure the flap has a mirror-like finish.
Measure a piece of plastic to fit over the opening you created. Tape the plastic sheet to the inside of the box. Tape one side first, then the other side. Make the seal airtight.
Line the bottom and sides of the pizza box with aluminium foil, carefully glue into place. Insulation could also be used (straw, paper, or wool) to help retain heat in the box whilst cooking. Cover the aluminium foil with a piece of black construction paper and tape into place, (Diagram #3). Wedge the flap open with a stick, or use string. Now point the box towards the sun, ensuring the open panel reflects the Sun into the box. (Diagram #4).
Voilà, your oven is now ready! Happy cooking, why not try pizzas, hot dogs, chocolate brownies, or even try baking cookies and biscuits. Test how hot your oven gets using a simple oven thermometer! (Please allow 1 – 1½ hours for oven to warm up).
- Try using more than one reflective panel. Use 4 panels instead of one. See Figure 3 in post – Build a simple solar cooker.
- Use plenty of insulation. Most solar cookers lose their power through heat loss.
- Ensure box is airtight. Use strong tape in abundance. Encapsulate box in a carrier bag.
REMEMBER – NEVER LOOK AT THE SUN DIRECTLY AND ALWAYS WEAR SUNGLASSES AND OVEN GLOVES WHEN HANDLING YOUR OVEN AND FOOD.
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