EnergyWhiz - Connecting schools
HomeGames & Activities > Solar Oven Tips & Recipes

Solar Oven Tips & Recipes

Cooking Tips

(Younger students will need to have parental supervision and/or help.)

  • Always use lids on pans, cover tightly with plastic wrap, or use baking bags to avoid condensation on the oven glass which blocks the solar radiation.
  • Temperature:
    • On a clear and sunny day the oven will heat up to 250°F or above. On these days you can cook or bake anything.
    • On a partially cloudy day the oven will heat to 200°F to 250°F. On these days you can easily cook meats, rice, baked potatoes, and frozen vegetables, but baking is not recommended.
  • Adjust your cooking time to account for the lower temperature. A rule of thumb is to figure twice the regular cooking time.
  • Use a meat thermometer instead of a timer to determine if the food is done.
  • Any conventional recipe that would be suitable for your oven will work in a solar oven, also crock pot recipes are particularly suitable for using in the solar oven.
  • Foods generally use less liquids or cook in their own juices. This produces better tasting and more nutritious food.
  • Foods never burn and rarely overcook in a solar oven.
  • Foods particularly suited for the classroom include: hot dogs, slice and bake cookies, brownies, rice mixes, cocktail sausages in barbeque sauce, nachos, s'mores.
  • Some specific food tips:
    • cook (steam) yellow and green vegetable in dark colored casseroles to prevent discoloration
    • reduce liquids in cake recipes by one half
    • cook foods in their natural state (i.e. potatoes in skins and corn in husks)
    • chewy dessert recipes such as brownies come out better than crispy ones
    • meats cook better if cut into small pieces.

Simple Heat-n-Eat Ideas

  • Hot dogs
  • Nacho cheese sauce (can be heated in the jar with the lid removed)
  • Baked beans (add hot dog pieces for beanie weenies)

Easy-to-Bake Oven Ideas

  • Slice and bake cookies
  • Frozen bread dough (let rise in pan then bake)
  • Frozen pizza (french bread pizza fits well)
  • Packaged rice mixes



Solar S'Mores 1

  • 24 squares from chocolate bars
  • 12 graham crackers, halved
  • 6 large marshmallows

Place 4 squares of chocolate on each of 6 graham crackers, top with marshmallows.
Cover with remaining graham cracker squares to form sandwiches.
Press to seal.
Wrap with foil.
Place in oven. Bake until heated and chocolate begins to melt.
Serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.


Solar S'Mores 2

  • cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 12 graham crackers, halved
  • 6 large marshmallows

Spread peanut butter on 6 graham crackers, top with marshmallows and place in oven.
Cover with remaining graham cracker squares to form sandwiches.
Press to seal.
Bake until heated. Serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.


Banana Boats

  • 6 bananas
  • chocolate bar squares, kisses, or chocolate chips
  • marshmallows, large or miniatures

Peel one strip of skin from banana.
Remove small amount of banana or cut slit into banana.
Place chocolate and marshmallows inside banana.
Wrap in foil. Heat until chocolate begins to melt.
Serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.


Backyard Baked Beans

  • 2 slices bacon (optional)
  • 16 oz. can (1 3/4 cups) baked beans
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 1/4 cup catsup
  • 2 Tablespoons. Worcestershire sauce

Cut bacon into small pieces.
Combine chopped onion and bacon in container with lid.
Cook covered until bacon is brown and onion is tender.
Add remaining ingredients.
Bake covered for one hour or until beans are thickened and heated through. Makes 4 servings.


Florida Solar Cookies

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup granola
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix butter, sugar and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix well.
Drop spoonfuls of batter onto a disposable aluminum pan.
Cover tightly with plastic wrap (tape on the bottom of pan if necessary).
Bake until cookies puff up and appear brown.
You can test doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of a cookie. If it comes out clean, the cookie is done.


Newton's Apples

  • 6 baking apples, cored
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 6 teaspoons butter
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon flour
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon water

Place apples in a 12 x 8 inch baking dish.
Place 1/2 tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon butter in cavity of each apple.
Cover tightly with plastic wrap.
Bake one hour in solar oven or until apples are tender.
Combine brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, raisins and water.
Spoon mixture in and over apples.
Continue baking uncovered until sauce is thick.


FSEC Cornish Hens

  • 1 or 2 rock cornish hens
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 small onions
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 package rice mix
  • Water for mix

Wash cornish hens and pat dry with paper towels.
Rub with butter and sprinkle a little salt and pepper inside and out.
Peel onions and place one in each hen cavity.
Place cornish hens in a glass baking dish (8 x 8" or 8 x 10").
Put in an oven bag and secure.
Bake in med (300°) oven for 1 hour.
Remove from oven.
Pour rice mix and water into pan around cornish hens.
Replace bag and return to oven for 30 minutes.


Party Franks

  • 1 pkg mini cocktail frankfurters
  • 2 cups barbeque sauce

Place cocktail frankfurters and barbeque sauce in a covered glass dish or a dish inside a baking bag.
Place in oven until heated through, approx. 20 minutes in a hot (350°) oven, 45 minutes in a cool (250°) oven.



©2020 University of Central Florida. All rights reserved. Developed and maintained by the Florida Solar Energy Center, a research institute of the University of Central Florida. Contact Us.

EnergyWhiz Schools energy data is part of the SunSmart Schools E-Shelter Program, which is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, 2010-2012.