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Best Camp Stoves For Backpacking

Solo Stove Lite - Compact Wood Burning Backpacking Stove

Solo Stove Lite – Compact Wood Burning Backpacking Stove

Well, as a backpacker who will be doing a lot of hiking, besides your lightweight backpacking tent, you would want a portable lightweight camping stove that is easy to setup and control, versatile, durable and provides wind resistance.

The last thing you would want when you are tired and hungry would be a frozen canister or a broken pump stove.

What is the best camping stove for hiking?

You have a choice of a traditional wood stove, an alcohol stove, solid fuel stove, a canister stove or enjoy the convenience of a stove in a can.

Even while camping in the wilderness, you can still enjoy gourmet cooking with a stove that allows slow simmering such as the canister stove.

The stove is best compact, lightweight and fits into your backpacking cookware set.

A great tip is for every one to bring along their own little compact ultralight backpacking stove when camping in a group. This ensure everyone gets to eat together at the same time instead of a long wait.

Best Backpacking Stoves

There are a number of factors to take into consideration when deciding on the type of portable camping stove to bring along on your hiking trip.


Is it summer or winter; low or high altitude; windy or otherwise? A canister stove can withstand a windy environment better than an alcohol stove which needs some kind of shield from the wind.

Compared to canister stove, the liquid fuel stove works great on high altitudes and extremely cold snowy  environments.


How easily available is fuel? Wood fuel consisting of twigs and small branches might not be easily available, so are gas-filled cylinders. However, alcohol can be more easily found even in small towns.

Fast boiling

An alcohol stove takes a longer time to boil water compared to a canister stove which just needs about 5 minutes to boil 2 cups of water. The alcohol stove will take as long as 7 to 10 minutes for the same amount of water.


The canister stove is great for simmering gourmet meals.


With wood burning stove, there is no need to carry the fuel. Vargo Titanium Wood Stove weighs about 4.1 oz.;

the Ultralight Backpacking Canister Camp Stove with Piezo Ignition weighs about 3.9 oz minus the canister gas;

Esbit Brass Alcohol Burner Camping Stove with Variable Temperature Control

Esbit Brass Alcohol Burner Camping Stove with Variable Temperature Control

the Esbit Solid Fuel Stove and Cookset is constructed from extremely light, hard anodized aluminum that weighs only 7 oz. minus the solid state fuel cubes;

the MSR PocketRocket Stove weighs 3.5 oz and boils 1 quart of water in slightly less than 3.5 minutes.

the Esbit Alcohol Burner weighs only 3.25 oz. and comes with a flame regulator with a fold-away handle as well as variable temperature control.

A comparison Chart Of The Pros And Cons Of The Different Types Of Camping Stoves

Types of camping stovesProsCons
Canister stoveUltralight Canister Camp Stove For BackpackingFuel burns clean with no soot
Gas canister self seals when pot or kettle is removed thus ensuring that no fuel is spilled
Can easily adjust fire from low to high
Can be used at high altitudes
Can be used for larger pots
Very easy to use
Prefilled canisters needed
Canisters are non-refillable
Freezing temperatures not suitable
Alcohol stoveesbit-brass-alcohol-burner-camping-stove-with-variable-temperature-controlFuel burns clean with no soot

Poor efficiency
Slow to cook with
Not suitable for winter use and under windy conditions
Wood stove
Solo Stove Wood Burning Stove For Backpacking
No need to carry fuel
Wood fire blackens pots and pans
Not suitable in places where wood fire is not allowed
Liquid fuel stove (white gas stove)msr-whisperlite-stoveWork at subfreezing temperature
Work well in high altitudes
Easily available
Cook food fast
Heavy and bulky
Stove in a can
Stove In A Can
All-in-one cooking platform
Safe, natural, water-resistant, non-explosive fuel source
No soot on pots
Works well in windy, rainy and sub-freezing conditions
No spilling of fuel - uses fuel cells or discs
Store indefinitely
Soot collects inside the can and cleaning up is needed

Solar stove
Pollution free
Unlimited free supply of fuel - the sun
Easy to use
Can cook where open flames are not allowed
Very slow to cook with
Limited to sunny places
Weather dependent
Night cooking not possible
Hexamine stove (Esbit Pocket Stove)esbit-ultralight-folding-pocket-stove-with-six-14g-solid-fuel-tabletsUltra lightweight
Simple to use
Uses smokeless solid fuel tablets
Leaves black residue on bottom of pots and pans

Types of Camping Stoves

Camping Wood Stove – Solid Fuel Burning Stove

The best advantage of a camp wood stove is that it uses wood pellets or twigs that you come across on your trail. There is no cost involved on buying fuel or the fuel adding to the weight of your backpacking stove. It is also very light.

The most noticeable disadvantage would be a blackened pot. Cooking temperature is not easy to control when using firewood as the fuel.

You have to make sure that dry firewood is available along the hike.

Good examples of ultralight backpacking wood stove include the Biolite CampStove, Solo wood burning backpacking stove, Vargo titanium wood stove

BioLite CampStove


BioLite CampStove even allows you to generate electricity from the heat of the fire. The power generated via an electric generator works a fan to create airflow for better combustion.

Excess electricity is then sent to the USB port to charge your devices such as your smartphone, flashlight or GPS. However, you need a hot fire before enough power is generated for charging your USB as priority is given to the fan and battery. 20 minutes of charging will get you about 60 minutes of talk time.

BiloLite Camp Stove is also great for those emergency situations when power lines are down and you need power to charge your phones, gadgets or LED lights.

Weighing about 33 oz. or 935 grams, this wood burning stove takes about 4 and a half minute to boil a liter (1.1 qt) of water, using about 1.6 oz or 46 grams of wood.

Since it uses renewable resources (wood, pinecone, twigs) as fuel thus making it great for long trips in the wilderness. There is no need to carry fuel or search for fuel to buy in small towns.

However, do take note that damp wood would produce smoke. Once the fire is started using the firelighter provided, turn on the fan to low setting. Add more wood until you get a big fire. The fan will automatically changes to high setting. Now, you can start boiling your water.

  • Easy to use
  • No extra expenditure on buying fuel
  • Fuel burns efficiently
  • Very little ash left behind
  • Great as an emergency kit
  • Have to keep feeding the fire with wood
BioLite Portable Grill Attachment

BioLite Portable Grill Attachment

Great additions to the camp stove are the Biolite wood burning grill and the kettle pot for a more varied camping diet.

Add on the compact BioLite Portable Grill Attachment (with foldable legs) for some tasty steaks or sausages for some delicious backpacking meals.

The fresh air and hiking exercise sure does work up an appetite.

Grill to perfection on low, medium or high settings with the aromatic wood grilled flavor.

The grill will add an additional 2 pounds to your backpack weight.

BioLite KettlePot

BioLite KettlePot

Another great companion to the Biolitecamp stove is the Biolite KettlePot.

Cook your food and boil water for your coffee in this fast cooking ultra-thin stainless steel kettle pot with a 1.5 liters capacity.

It comes with a pouring spout for hassle-free pouring. You can also store your camp stove or the wood burning camping grill inside it when packing, thus saving space in your backpack.

The kettle pot weighs about 465 grams.

Click here to read reviews and ratings of Biolite CampStove on Amazon

Click here to check it out on the Biolite site

Stove In A Can

Stove In A Can

Stove In A Can

An easy to use cooking platform specially designed for backpacking, recreational and emergency uses, it consists of the stove, cooking platform, waterproof matches as well as waterproof fuel cells.

Using non explosive and non-hazardous fuel cells which burn clean, they can be stored indefinitely and work great in all kinds of weather conditions.

The environmentally conscious will be pleased to know that the fuel cells are made of recycled natural materials.

Click here to buy Stove In A Can on Amazon

One or two cells would be enough for a week long camping trip. One cell used for about 15 minutes per day will last about a week. Light up in seconds, you’ll have your meal of freeze dried food or can of beans super fast.

At up to 18,000 BTU’s, the specially formulated fuel cells burn real hot and water gets to boil in less than 5 minutes. The fuel cells can be extinguished and kept for future use.

What is included in the set?

The complete set comes with:

  • stove (the can)
  • 4 nos. fuel cells (about 1 hour of cooking time per cell)
  • fuel ring (ensures heat adjustment depending on your cooking style)
  • cooking ring (allows proper air flow of oxygen for optimal heat)
  • cooking lid (can be used to stabilize the stove or use it as a cooking platform)
  • waterproof matches.

Comes with a wide base that supports up to 300 pounds.

Whether for camping, emergency situations (power outages) or other recreational purposes such as hunting, fishing, the stove in a can is an efficient, simple, reliable and safe way to get heating and lighting.

1/2 gallon can weighs about. 2.75lbs (with fuel cells)

Comes with a lifetime guarantee.


  • Superior Performance: Boils water in 5 minutes and cooks for 4 to 5 hours.
  • Safe: Uses a non-explosive fuel source that is waterproof and can be stored indefinitely.
  • Complete and Easy to Use: Includes stove, fuel, cooking platform, and waterproof matches
  • Can be lit and re-lit.
  • No risk of spilling fuel – Solid fuel cell is used


  • Soot inside sometimes can be difficult to clean out

Please take note that the stove is meant for outdoor use as the odorless and poisonous carbon monoxide is released when the fuel burns.


Check out this video on how to use Stove In A Can

Read about what real customers have to say about this easy to use emergency cum camp stove

Click here for Stove In A Camp reviews and ratings on Amazon

So is it canister camp stove, the alcohol or the wood burning backpacking stove for your next camping trip?

Would like to read more reviews and ratings on the best rated backpacking camping stoves as decided by real consumers?

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