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The 10 Best Camping Stoves To Buy in 2019

While cold, salty and dehydrated foods would be adequate when it comes to filling empty stomachs, every camper wants to have hot meals if possible. As a result, camping stoves earn their well-deserved reputation as some of the most essential items in outdoor adventures. Whether it’s just a family outing or an extended camping trip, it’s reassuring to have the best camping stove right by your side.  Thanks to the sustaining meals provided by the stove, you should be able to regain expended energy and get yourself ready for more exhilarating activities. But with numerous models and brands around, it’s difficult to secure a suitable stove.  

Best Camping Stove Comparison Chart

Top Rated Camping StovesBurnersSpecific Features
Price
Our Reviews
Camp Chef EX60LW Explorer 22 30,000 BTUs; propane$$*****
Coleman Classic2 10,000 BTUs; propane$$$$*****
Camp Chef Tahoe3 30,000 BTUs; propane$$$$$****
MSR WindBurner1Radiant burner and enclosed
Windproof design
$$$$****
Jetboil MiniMo 1Proprietary regulator technology and enhanced regulator diaphragm$$$$*****
Stansport Outfitter Series325.000 BTUs; propane$$$****
MSR PocketRocket 21Ultralight (2.6 oz) and compact
(2x2x3 in) folding canister stove
$$*****
Coleman Fold N Go210,000 BTUs; propane$$$****
BioLite Basecamp1Smokeless flames, clean burner,
integrated thermometer
$$$****
Optimus Polaris Optifuel1Multifuel Burner for both
liquid & LPG canister fuel types
$$$$*****

Top 10 Best Camping Stove Reviews For 2019

camping stove reviews

Feeling confused along with overwhelmed by the number of choices on the stove market nowadays? If that happens to be the case, this article shall offer you much-needed assistance. You would be introduced to several products that people often talk about regarding the issue of the best camping stove. Each of the mentioned stoves comes with its technical details as well as performance assessment. Take a good look at the information down below and then acquire the best camping stove for your own trips.

1. Camp Chef EX60LW Explorer 2 – Best Of The Best

Camp Chef EX60LW Explorer 2

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: 30,000 BTUs
  • Number Of Burners: 2
  • Dimension: 14 x 32 x 29 Inches
  • Weight: 36 Pounds

Why This Is The Best

Versatile, rough and stable, Camp Chef EX60LW Explorer 2 is the best camping stove in terms of all-around operation. Designed for people who want to prepare comprehensive meals in the outdoors, the Camp Chef stove should tackle whatever cooking needs you have in mind.  With 2 powerful burners that deliver an impressive output of 30.00 BTUs each and a total cooking surface 448 square inches, the stove cooking capacity is top notch. It’s difficult to locate another stove that perfume better than Explorer 2 for family trips.

Thanks to the adaptable design of Camp Chef EX60LW Explorer, outfitting it with different cooking accessories is a breeze. In addition to that, the highly precise simmer control of the Camp Chef stove allows it to comfortably match the flame requirement of specific foods. The 3-side windshield of the stove, which receives praise from numerous camping stove reviews, also plays an important role in ensuring the flame remain consistent. At 36 pound, the stove is fairly cumbersome but you could ditch the legs in order to cut down some weight.

     Pros

  • Two strong burners  
  • Flexible and well built
  • Straightforward operation

     Cons

  • A bit heavy  
  • Slightly expensive

2. Coleman Classic – Editor’s Choice

Coleman Classic

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: 10,000 BTUs
  • Number Of Burners: 2
  • Dimension: 4.1 x 21.9 x 13.7 Inches
  • Weight: 12 Pounds

Why It’s An Editor Choice

While Coleman Classic is not exactly a top of the line stove, it’s often hailed as the best propane camp stove regarding cost-effectiveness. Featuring 2 independent burners and a total cooking power of 20.000 BTUs, the Coleman stove is a great choice for recreational campers. The innovative incorporation of PerfectFlow and PerfectHeat technologies result into persistent cooking flame and efficient fuel usage which are appreciated.   

Made from high grade aluminized steel, the robust stove proves to be rugged and light.  

In most of the case, Coleman Classic is fully capable of accommodating a 12-inch and a 10-inch pan at the same time without much difficulty. Using a standard 16.4-ounce propane canister, the Coleman would last for an hour on average with both burners in operation. For simmer control, the stove normally has an easy time boiling water, grilling veggies, cooking up steaks and so on.  It’s not as good as high-end units on the market when it comes regulating the flame intensity though.

     Pros

  • Reasonable price
  • Compact and light
  • Effective wind block

     Cons

  • The output is limited
  • Some products arrived damaged  

3. Camp Chef Tahoe – Editor’s Choice

Camp Chef Tahoe

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: 30,000 BTUs
  • Number Of Burners: 3
  • Dimension: 16 x 38 x 30 Inches
  • Weight: 47 Pounds

Why It’s An Editor Choice

Looking for serious cooking capacity? Then Camp Chef Tahoe should be the best camping stove on the market for you. Possessing up to 3 burners, each with a heat output of 30.000 BTUs, the Camp Chef is considered as the best stove for camping with large groups. Due to the impressive estate, the stove could support as many as 12 coffee percolators while also preparing egg and bacon. As the design manages to eliminate unusual hot and cold spots, the stove requires little time to get meals ready and limit the fuel consumption.

Being a freestanding stove, Camp Chef Tahoe comes with its own set of steady, individually adjustable legs that facilitate deployment. As a result, it’s a very simple task for people to set up the Camp Chef on uneven ground. Since the stove has protected housings for the burners, the cooking flame is less affected by winds in the vanity. With a weight of 47 Pounds, transporting the stove on foot is problematic, not to mention its fuel which happens to be a 5-gallon propane tank.  

     Pros

  • Great capacity
  • Strong burners
  • User-friendly legs

     Cons

  • High price
  • Quite heavy   

 

> Related reviews: The 10 Best Camping Coffee Makers Money Can Buy <<

4. MSR WindBurner

MSR WindBurner

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Specifications    

  • Heat Output: Unavailable   
  • Number Of Burners: 1
  • Dimension: 4.2 x 4.5x 7.1 Inches
  • Weight: 0.9 Pounds

Why We Love It

For any campers that pay a lot of emphasis on mobility as well as simplicity, MSR WindBurner possesses an attractive design. With its all-in-one stove and cookware system, the MSR stove is the best portable camping stove for minimalists. Despite the fact that the cooking capacity of the stove is quite modest, it’s nonetheless adequate for backpacking trips. Being compatible with various accessories including pot, skillet and coffee press, the stove from MSR could whip up foods and drinks within a few moments.

Considering its profile, several people think that MSR WindBurner prone to fail under strong winds. In reality, the enclosed, air combustion nature of the MSR pressure regulator provides sustained flames in less than ideal situations. As the cookware is well secured to the burner and there are even stabilize legs for the fuel canister, the stove setup is reasonably stable. For weakness, the simmer control of the stove is in essence far from ideal and the handle requires additional reinforcements.   

     Pros

  • Highly compact
  • Multiple accessories
  • Backpacking compatible

     Cons

  • Humble output
  • High acquisition cost

 

5. Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System

Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: Unavailable   
  • Number Of Burners: 1
  • Dimension: 4.2 x 4.5x 7.1 Inches
  • Weight: 0.875 Pounds  

Why We Love It

Like the idea behind MSR WindBurner but want something with greater control of flame intensity? Then you need to take a look at Jetboil MiniMo. Equipped with an effective and efficient valve, the Jetboil stove delivers admirable simmer controls compare to other backpacking-oriented examples. The presence of the metal coil at the bottom minimizes heat loss and further decrease the overall fuel consumption rate. Although the stove is a bit heavy, people would have little trouble carrying and manipulating it as they see fit.

As it’s outfitted with a low spoon angle, you may eat straight from the Jetboil MiniMo with relative ease. The insulated lid of the Jetboil cup also let you consume drinks whenever you want. Powered by a 3.5-ounce JetPower gas can, the stove should be able to boil roughly 12 litters worth of water before another gas can is needed. Due to the straightforward push-button ignition mechanism, turning on the stove is a breeze.  Most campers could get the stove up and running in just a blink of an eye with almost no effort.

     Pros

  • Tough handle   
  • Ergonomic layout
  • Great fuel efficiency

     Cons

  • Pricey
  • Inadequate wind protection

 

6. Stansport Outfitter Series

Stansport Outfitter Series

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: 25.000 BTUs (Sides) 10.000 BTUs (Center)    
  • Number Of Burners: 3
  • Dimension: 15 x 3.5 x 24.2 Inches
  • Weight: 14.2 Pounds  

Why We Love It

Featuring electronic ignition in addition to rugged cooking grate, Stansport Outfitter Series is the best portable gas stove when it comes to ease of use. Since the Stansport stove provides you with 3 handy burners, the time it takes to prepare camping dishes is substantially shortened.  For the heat, the burners on the left and right side each got an output of 25.000 BTUs while the center bunter is rated at 10.000 BTUs. With a total of 60.000 BTUs, the stove is able to handle most cooking tasks from boiling water and to whipping up full-size meals.   

Because Stansport Outfitter Series possesses lids that minimize the burner exposure to surrounding winds, heat loss is not a problem. If you want to use big pan and pot, fold the lids to make room for the extra size cookware.

In term of flame regulation, the stove let you change the heat output to fit the current needs and requirements.

Thanks to the handy stainless steel drip tray, the Stansport stove is forgiving to work with while cleaning and maintaining.

     Pros

  • Good price
  • Very flexible
  • Excellent value

     Cons

  • Less than ideal finish
  • Inconsistent performance

7. MSR PocketRocket 2

MSR PocketRocket 2

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: Unavailable     
  • Number Of Burners: 1
  • Dimension: 7.25 x 5 x 4 Inches
  • Weight: 0.16 Pounds  

Why We Love It

An updated version of PocketRocket, MSR PocketRocket 2 is well known in the camping world for its compactness and negligible weight. Due to its ease of use and fast boiling, many people even call the MSR stove the best single burner camp stove for ultralight campers. For hardcore, long-distance hikers, the stove is also held in high regard due to its admirable reliability and dependability. There is no need for priming, pressurizing and alike, you just need to turn the stove on and start cooking.

Designed with a fine control valve, MSR PocketRocket 2 permits campers to make quick changes to its flame without much difficulty. The valve of the MSR stove could be manipulated if you are wearing thick gloves.

Due to the presence of the serrated pot-support, you don’t have to worry too much about the pot shifting all of the sudden. Being compatible with most propane canister available for purchase, the stove matches the demands of global travelers who might have certain difficulties acquiring specific fuels.

     Pros

  • Highly affordable
  • Multi-fuel and light
  • Straightforward setup  

     Cons

  • Vulnerable to corrosion  
  • Some manufacturing defects are noted  

 

     READ MORE:

8. Coleman Fold N Go

Coleman Fold N Go

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: 10.000 BTUs     
  • Number Of Burners: 2  
  • Dimension: 15 x 14 x 7 Inches
  • Weight: 9 Pounds  

Why We Love It

A unique product from Coleman, Coleman Fold N Go is humble in profile yet able to provide respectable heating powers. With 2 independent 10.000 BTUs burners, the Coleman stove takes the top spot in various articles about the best car camping stove. Each of the stove burners is capable of accommodating a 10-inch pan at any given time which is quite useful. If the need ever arises, the 13-inch spread between burners allows the stove to comfortably support sizable skillets and pots.   

Equipped with push-button ignition and dual control knobs, Coleman Fold N Go performs with distinction in most outdoor adventures. In order to manage the flame intensity of individual burner, all you have to do is to turn the knobs. In term of fuel consumption, a 16.4-ounce fuel canister could sustain both burners for more than hours on high settings. As the cooking surfaces of the stove utilize aluminized steel, clean up after cooking is a walk in the park.   

     Pros

  • User-friendly handle
  • Commendable portability
  • Spacious cooking surface

     Cons

  • A bit bulky     
  • Slightly high grate

9. BioLite Basecamp

BioLite Basecamp

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Specifications      

  • Heat Output: Unavailable      
  • Number Of Burners: 1  
  • Dimension: 18.1 x 17.5 x 23Inches
  • Weight: 17 Pounds  

Why We Love It

Running on twigs and branches, BioLite Basecamp is the best camping stove for recreational trips. What the BioLite stove lack in heat output as well as simmer control, it makes up for in innovative features. Employing advanced thermoelectric technology, the stove converts heat to electricity which it stores inside its built-in lithium-ion battery. The accumulated energy would then be used to power the internal fan to increase the fire efficiency, sustain the USB light and charge your electronics.

Made from stainless steel along with FDA-approved ceramic, BioLite Basecamp is able to prepare pizzas, burgers and so on. The roomy grill surface of the BioLite camping stove is able to 8 burgers at once. Through the thermometer mounted on the stove lid, people could tell what the temperature is with just a quick glance. Moreover, the lid also possesses vent that helps to keep the airs dried and circulated. Thanks to the foldable legs, it takes little time and effort for you to adapt the stove to uneven surfaces.  

     Pros

  • Adjustable legs  
  • Cheap, almost free fuel
  • Insulated silicone handle

Cons

  • Inadequate quality control  
  • Mechanism failures are noted

10. Optimus Polaris Optifuel

Optimus Polaris Optifuel

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Specification

  • Heat Output: Unavailable  
  • Number Of Burners: 1  
  • Dimension: 9 x 4.2 x 8.2 Inches
  • Weight: 2.25 Pounds   

Why We Love It

As a hassle-free, multi-fuel camping stove, Optimus Polaris Optifuel could run on petrol, diesel, kerosene and white gas. Featuring strong and robust legs, the Optimus stove offers a stable platform for most cookware used by the average campers. With liquid fuels, priming is pretty straightforward and with gas canisters, the stove burns cleanly. There are 2 unfolding wire legs on the stove that you could use in order to get the canister upside down.  That arrangement let the stove burn smoother in cold temperatures.

Optimus Polaris Optifuel uses only one nozzle for all types of fuels so it’s quite simple to switch to alternative fuels at moment notice. Moreover, a purpose design magnetic cleaning needle also accompanies the Optimus stove so you could give the nozzle a good scrub whenever you see fit. Wave the tool beneath the stove and the needle should take care of the rest. While the stove is quite expensive compared to other products, its performance justifies the cost.

     Pros

  • Accept multiple fuels
  • Convenient cleaning tool
  • Quality aluminum pump

     Cons

  • High acquisition cost
  • Some examples arrived damaged  

Best Camping Stove Ultimate Buyer’s Guide

1. BTU (British Thermal Unit)

In case you don’t know about it, BTU is a measurement unit that people use to gauge the heat output of a particular stove. As the BTU rating goes up, the flame intensity increases accordingly which affect the average cooking time of the stove.  While you should not think of BTU as the sole indicator of power, the rating itself is nonetheless an excellent way to compare different stoves. In addition to that, a high BTU rating also means a high fuel consumption rate. Therefore, to decide just how much BTU is needed, take all the aspect of your camping trip into account such as party size, fuel supply, …

2. Burner

By far, the most popular number of burners in camping stoves is 2 which is good enough for ordinary camping trips.  With 2 burners in action at the same time, you could prepare meals quickly and efficiently. Compared to camping stoves that only have 1 burner, 2 burner units offer superior flexibility and versatility. Unless you have limited cooking needs, it’s a good idea for you to ensure that your stove possesses 2 burners. For large party camping, 3 burner stoves are available but they are heavy, it requires a lot of efforts to transport these stoves in extended travels. Because of the transportation difficulties, only use 3 burner units if you have no other choices.

Stove Burner

3. Resistance Against Windy/Blowy Weathers

Outdoor weathers change from time to time and without warning. Hence, it’s very important that your camping stove is able to whip up decent meals while facing sudden gusts. If the flame of your stove repeatedly fails to reach the cookware due to strong winds, further cooking attempts only lead to wastes of fuel. In order to prevent winds from ruining your meals, it’s strongly recommended that you select a stove with windscreens. With windscreens, the stove flame would be protected from 3 sides and that is often enough. Needless to say, even the best camping stove might fail if subjected to gales, seek shelters to cook in peace.

4. Simmer Control

In the case you simply want to heat some water, the ability to regulate the flame intensity is not critical.  However, if you want to prepare complex meals then effective simmer control is obviously vital. Stoves that deliver simmer control allow the users to adjust the flame and keep it from fluctuating on its own. A number of models on the market have this function but high-end products perform much better in normal conditions. On the other hands, budget examples mostly offer “on” and “off” with little in between. Think about the kind of meal you intend to prepare while camping and then come up with a sensible decision.   

top rated camp stoves

5. Ease Of Use

Having what people claim to be the best camping stove mean nothing if you are unable to utilize its potentials. Moreover, it’s frustrating to get stuck in the middle of nowhere with an expensive stove that you struggle to deploy and make it work. So before you decide to purchase a stove, it’s widely advised that you have a firm grasp on how to operate and maintain it. Of course, a stove that got multiple features and accessories is nice to have but why bother caring about functions that you almost never use? Closely exam and inspect available camping stoves in order to see if any of them possesses the qualities you seek.  

Tabletop Vs Freestanding: Which One Is The Best Design

Depending on the design, you would have no trouble splitting the majority of camping stoves into 2 categories: tabletop and freestanding. Here are quick overviews to help you determine the design of your best camping stove.  

best 2 burner camp stove

Tabletop

As the name suggests, tabletop stoves bear a striking resemblance to ordinary tables and they receive praises from a lot of campers around the globe. Easy to pack up and simple to move around, tabletop stoves have superior portability compared to their freestanding counterparts. If you are in need of the best car camping stove, you need to prioritize tabletop stoves among market products. On the downside, the heat output of tabletop examples is not as good as freestanding units and their stability relies largely on the deployment surfaces. If you must venture deep into the outdoor, consider bringing a separate camping table to better support your tabletop stove.    

Freestanding

The most distinctive trait of freestanding stoves is their long, sturdy legs which let you deploy them on various surfaces.  Thanks to the purpose design legs, freestanding stoves tend to have excellent stability and their heat output is quite commendable. In exchange, the legs of freestanding units cause certain issues with transportation as they are large, heavy and also unwieldy. Fortunately, many stove manufacturers nowadays make sure that the legs of their stoves are detachable. That means in a pinch, it’s possible to ditch the legs altogether and use your freestanding stove as if it’s a tabletop model.  

Fuels For Camping Stoves: Quick Overviews

When it comes to fuel that stoves use, there are 2 common types: gas and liquid.  Depending on the length of the trip as well as personal preferences, one type shall prove superior to the other. Here are a couple of issues you need to know while deciding the ideal fuel.

Best Stove for camping

Gas

Stoves in the category depend on canisters filled with pressurized gasses (butane, propane, isobutene,..)  to start and sustain their fires. As the canisters come at a ready-to-use form, you only have to attach them to your camping stove and that should be everything. There is no need for priming and the shelf life of the canister is excellent. In term of drawbacks, stoves that utilize gas canisters don’t work consistently in cold weathers as low temperatures cause the canister pressure to fluctuate. Moreover, you need to carry the fuel in several canisters so you are going to end up with extra weight.

Liquid

Simple and straightforward, liquid fuels (white gas, kerosene, diesel,…) offer commendable operation in harsh weathers as well as extreme attitudes. It’s easy to acquire liquid fuels no matter where you are and in addition to that, you just need to bring a specific amount. In exchange, stoves that run on liquid fuels require priming each time you fire them up which is often tricky. One minor mistake is more than enough to generate fireballs and lead to severe burns. Compare to gas stoves, liquid stoves need more intensive maintenance in order to prevent the fuel line from getting clogged. Since certain liquid fuels, especially gasoline, tend to have a short shelf life, stockpiling stove fuels for an extended period of time is generally unwise.   

Important Note: Excluding gas and liquid fuels, there are also alternatives sources to start and sustain a fire such as twigs, branches,… However, camping stoves that are designed around these types of fuels often have mediocre values with almost no simmer control. Because of these limitations, just pass over them if you truly want to have a dependable and reliable stove around. That being said, stoves that employ uncommon fuels serve well as backups in case your primary stove run into troubles.        

Top 3 Safety Tips And Tricks

best camping stove
Top 10 Best Camping Stoves For The Money
  • Never cook inside enclosed spaces: As these spaces often lack ventilation, carbon monoxide poisoning might take place without any warning. Also avoid cooking in tents, RVs,… to avoid accidental fires.
  • Check for leaks before use: No matter what kind of stove you use,  leakage is a constant threat that you must always keep in mind. Take a quick glance at the fuel lines, valves and connections each time you cook.
  • Cook on sufficiently stable surfaces: You cannot handle the cookware properly if the stove itself keeps wobbling times and again. Find somewhere level to set up the stove or accommodate it with a steady table.