The best camping stoves you can buy
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- A reliable camp stove is a great way to enjoy a warm meal and a hot cup of coffee when you're out in the field. It can also be must-have for purifying water and safely cooking food.
- The Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Camp Stove is our top pick because it's reliable, easy to use, and weighs less than 2 ounces.
There really is nothing like a hot cup of coffee on a cold mountain morning, except maybe a hot meal on a cold mountain evening. Or some fresh fish cooked up minutes after it was pulled from the stream. Or a mug of hot cocoa sipped by the campfire as snowflakes dance beneath the winter stars.
With a good camp stove, you can enjoy a bit of creature comfort even when you're a multi-day hike away from the comforts of home. In my woodland wanderings, I've used three or four stoves of my own and I've cooked and/or boiled water using easily a dozen stoves owned by fellow mountaineers. I've used camp stoves to cook up multiple course meals during leisurely afternoons at well-established campsites and I've used them to melt snow and ice just so I had enough water to drink in order to rehydrate after an exhausting climb. Mostly, though, like all campers, I've used them to boil water.
In fact, it's worth noting that, more than any other use, a camp stove will be used to boil water, not for actual cooking. This is so both for purifying water and because so many ready-made camp meals simply require the addition of heated H2O. So along with that camp stove, make sure you also get a decent pot for boiling.
Any decent stove will produce plenty of heat and will resist the elements, but beyond that, there are all sorts of differences between various brands and models that make a given unit ideal for one user but a poor choice for others. In discussing the five camp stoves on this list, I'll cover not only each option's inherent qualities but will also talk through why each model is well suited to specific activities, as well as why a given stove may be a poor choice for other scenarios.
Each of these camp stoves is unique in several ways, but a few factors must be universally considered with backpacking stoves. These are weight, fuel source, and boil time, which is tantamount to considering BTU output. Beyond that, go ahead and let personal preference help inform your choice of the best camp stove. After all, you're the chef who'll be using it out there in the field.
Here are the best camp stoves you can buy:
- Best camp stove overall: Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove
- Best budget camp stove: Coleman Bottle Top Propane Stove
- Best high-powered camp stove: Mr. Steak 1-Burner Infrared Portable Grill
- Best wood-burning camp stove: Ohuhu Portable Wood Burning Camping Stove
- Best high-tech camp stove: BioLite CampStove 2
Updated on 5/23/2019 by Les Shu: Updated prices, links, and formatting.
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