Camping is an experience that many people love but one thing that can often let it down it the food, especially if you’re a fussy eater. The meals that are often taken can be dry and inadequate but you can change all of that by buying the best camping stove.
They can completely change your camping experience as you can take your food to a whole new level. Choosing the best camp stove though means making sure it has the right amount of heat, wind resistance, and ignition while also taken other factors into account such as ease of use and portability.
There is a lot to consider but thankfully we have created a buying guide to answer all of your questions and have looked at the camping stove reviews to show you the top rated camping stoves on the market. Once you’ve read through this guide you’ll know exactly what you’re looking for.
How To Choose The Best Camping Stove – Buying Guide
Time To Boil
When it comes to these camping stoves you obviously want to know how powerful they will be and how quickly they will be able to boil your water or cook your food. The quicker they can do this then obviously the quicker you’ll be able to enjoy your stove and enjoy your camping trip.
In terms of this power there is always one rating that you need to look for and that is how many BTU’s that the product has. This stands for British Thermal Unit and is a measurement of the amount of heat that is required in order to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree in Fahrenheit.
One BTU is roughly the same amount of energy as lighting one traditional match so as you can imagine, the more BTU’s that the stove can provide, the more heat that it’s going to be able to produce. This is often determined by the size of the product with 10,000 BTU’s being a good mark for a single burner.
A few drop below this but are generally more lightweight and portable while other less portable stoves will go far above this figure. One point to look out on is that some products will mention the total BTU’s for a unit that has two burners meaning that the actual BTU of each burner is roughly half of this figure.
While it’s always tempting to go for the highest figure possible, this always has to be taken in the context of how portable the device is and how easy it is to use as well as all the other aspects that make a great camping stove. Even a 7,500 BTU unit is going to be able to boil your water easily enough.
One of the most frustrating things that can happen when you’re out there camping is for the wind to blow out any flame that you produce. Whether this is a flame that is on the end of a match, a campfire or the flame from a stove, it is annoying to have to fire it up once more in order to get back to where you started.
One of the ways to stop this is to have some sort of wind resistance for your stove. Many devices will be able to use the lid of your camping stove as a windbreak from one side which is a very useful feature to have and then from that lid some products will have flaps which will be able to fold out and give you protection from the sides as well.
For more open products some of them have windbreaks which can be bought separately and if they don’t then you will need to position your body to ensure that any wind is blowing against your back. There are other options as well which are the more natural options where you have fuel in the bottom of the device and this doubles up as a windbreak too.
Obviously, BTU is the standout figure when it comes to camping stoves as this determines the amount of heat that the stove is going to produce. What you also want from a stove though is the ability to alter the temperature so you are able to cook different items in different ways and have the ability to simmer food.
Sometimes you need to ability to cook things a lot slower or it may be just the fact that you want to heat something up but not all stoves will give you the ability to do this which is something that you need to look out for.
The bigger stoves on the market should always have this feature with turning knobs which will be able to control the amount of gas which is getting to the flame and therefore the size of it. Using a variant degree of gas not only allows you to have better cooking but also means that you are more efficient with your gas use which will make them last for a longer period of time.
Ease Of Set Up
How easy your stove is to set up can often depend on what type of cooking stove you are using. The standard design of a camping stove is very easy to set up as you simply place the stove down on somewhere that won’t burn, open it up and attach the gas and you’re away.
There are bigger stoves out there which require more of a set-up with legs that will keep the stove on more of an even footing. While these types of stove are harder to set up, they are also a lot bigger so you will be placing them somewhere for more of a permanent camping solution so this is less of an issue.
There are also smaller stoves which require a different level of setup including fuel tablets or using firewood in order to start them. There are a bit trickier to set up but after a bit of practice it will be easy enough to be able to start your camping stove in no time.
Ease Of Care
When it comes to cooking it’s more than likely that some of the food that you are cooking is going to find its way out of the pan and falling below. This is where some of the smaller products can actually have an advantage as the food will leave the pan and fall onto the ground instead of getting anything dirty.
Sometimes though if you are camping nearby you wouldn’t want this to happen as it could attract insects and other animals but with bigger stoves you then have that food falling onto the stove which then needs to be cleaned.
Some camping stoves are a lot better at dealing with this than others and you need to look for the ability to take them apart in order to clean them thoroughly. Having a drip tray will help in this regard as it makes the cleaning process a lot easier in order to keep the whole camping stove clean.
If you are camping then one of the key aspects of all of your camping equipment is that it is portable. Even if you’re only going to be a short distance from the vehicle you still have to carry it to your camping site and you still have to pack it away in your car so you have to ensure that it is portable.
This obviously becomes even more important when you hiking and need to place it into a backpack as it has to be small enough to fit into the rest of your equipment. There are some very small devices that we have listed here which will be able to give you a camping stove whenever you need it.
There are also bigger options though which are intended to be used on a static campsite but aren’t designed to be too portable and are simply designed to be stored away easily in a vehicle. With portability you need to work out what you need from your camping stove and how far and often you need to carry it.
There are two main types of camping stove and that is either free standing models or tabletop models. The biggest difference in these two types of stoves is the size as free standing models are generally a lot bigger as they come with their own legs and don’t need to be placed on anything.
This makes them less portable but also means that you don’t have to worry about placing the stove down on anywhere. A tabletop stove obviously doesn’t have anything to hold itself up so it either needs to be placed on somewhere like a table or on the ground. These aren’t as easy to use but do have a much higher level of portability.
There are also other unique models which use a different type of fuel and are generally used on the floor. These types of camping stove have a very high level of portability but don’t have the same level of stability. The type that you require depends on the amount of space that you have available and how much you are going to be moving around.
Weight plays an important factor in portability as you need to ensure that it is going to be light enough for you to travel around with but generally this comes down to size so you know that if you’re buying a smaller model that it’s going to be much easier to carry.
The weight of the product doesn’t really affect its ability to perform as it will be weighted enough with the metal to form a solid enough surface. If you aim to be carrying a tabletop stove a long distance though then it is probably for the best to check the weight of the product beforehand to ensure that it’s easy enough to carry.
If you really are concerned about weight then getting one of the more portable products that rely on another fuel type would be the best bet as these are by far the lightest and easiest to carry. The weight will be displayed on all products so just needs to be checked before you buy.
Camping in the winter makes everything that little bit more difficult as you try to battle against the elements to have a comfortable camping experience. One of the features that you do want to look out for is to ensure that you have windbreaks for any type of protection from your blame as those winter winds can play havoc with your flame.
Another important point is to get a camping stove with a strong ignition so you know that it’s going to light in even the most difficult of circumstances. There are numerous products out there which boast a great degree of confidence in their ignition systems and having a stove which will light every time is a must-have.
Having stoves which have a high ‘ease of use’ factor can also be important in these situations as well as cold or gloved hands will find it much harder to grip. Having an easy ignition system as well as easy to use knobs is ideal as you’ll still be able to use them when you are lacking mobility yourself.
If you’re cooking hot food when what you are cooking it on is of a high degree of importance. The stove slipping off is not only extremely dangerous but it is also highly likely to damage the product and leave you without the ability to cook hot food or boil water.
Perhaps the best solution to this problem is to get a free standing stove which has its own legs so you will be confident that the product is going to remain stable while you cook. These devices will require a high degree of care and common sense but they offer a cooking solution which is not only stable but also convenient too.
I say convenient as there are plenty of table top stoves on the market which will have to be put on the ground. The reason for that is due to the fact that there won’t be anything stable enough nearby to confidently place the stove on. Putting it on a rock or a tree stump may seem like a good idea until disaster strikes. You need to make sure that the stove is stable and will stay stable throughout your cooking.
There are other burners though which were designed for the ground as these are smaller devices which sit under a pan. With these stoves it’s important to find a clear and level ground for them to sit on otherwise you could end up in a messy situation. You need to realize what type of camping you are doing and where you will be doing it.
Fuel Type and Capacity
Most of the models that we have featured here run on propane as it is a versatile and reliable fuel which can still run well in a wide variety of different temperatures. Bottles of propane also come in a wide variety of different sizes and they are easy and cheap to buy as well.
It’s always worth bringing as many bottles as you can carry to ensure that you don’t run out but a 16oz bottle is a great starting point for your camping stove. This is where fuel efficiency is important as you want to conserve your propane in order to extend their lives as much as possible. Changing tanks is easy but you still don’t want to be changing them all the time.
Liquid fuel and natural gas stoves are available but these don’t have quite the same number of advantages as propane does. There are other options here too as there are stoves which run off fuel tablets and others which run off firewood and these are great options as you don’t have to rely on carrying a tank with you but you do have to worry more about igniting them.
When you’re looking for the best way to ignite your camp stove then it’s likely that you’re going to be looking at a piezoelectricity ignition system which uses pressure to create an ignition which is similar to a lot of old-style stoves which can be found in the home.
This is much safer as you’re not relying on trying to use a match or lighter to start your ignition. It will work by a push of a button as you release the gas and the spark which will then start your permanent flame. There is an extra cost for this type of ignition system but for many this will be worth it as they are a lot easier to use.
You never want to rely on just this though as it’s always useful to carry matches or a lighter system just in case. There are also those more traditional stoves which will require those types of ignition system as well but if you’re looking for the most convenient option then choosing a stove with a piezo ignition option will be your best bet.
Q: How Many Burners Do I Need?
A: When it comes to these camping stoves you have the option of choosing between one or two burners depending on your own individual needs. As you can imagine the one burner options tend to be a lot smaller than their two burner counterparts and there are other key differences as well.
When it comes to their power output than the two burner options are generally going to be giving you a higher BTU rate than the one burner option. This is because the two option is generally seen as less portable so it can be made bigger. There are plenty of one burner options out there though which have a high BTU rate so this isn’t something you definitely have to sacrifice.
When it comes to ease of use then the one burner option is going to be the winner here as they are smaller and more compact meaning you can quickly get them out and get them fired up straight away. Many of the two burner options though come in an innovative design such as the Coleman which folds in on itself.
The main advantages of the one burner option are quite clear though as they are going to be a lot more portable so if you’re going to be doing any hiking or constantly moving camp then a one burner is going to be the solution that you need. This though obviously limits you on the amount you can cook and the burners also don’t rank as highly in stability or use during difficult conditions.
If you have a more static camp then it’s going to be wise for you two get a two burner solution as you’re going to be able to cook a lot more food and these generally have more features such as a quick ignition system and knobs for more accurate temperature control. They are also more stable and give you that greater level of power.
This really comes down to your own individual circumstances and the type of camping trips that you’re having. Using a freestanding camping stove might be great to use but if you’re constantly on the move then it’s going to be a huge pain. Likewise, if you have a static camp but a little burner then it’s going to be very frustrating. Make sure that you know what your situation is and then you can choose the right option for you.
Q: How To Clean My Camping Stove?
A: Cleaning any cooking stove can be a chore but if you’re outside then this can be even worse as you don’t have the same access to your washing resources as you’d usually do. You don’t want to leave any food on your stove though as this would quickly go very bad and probably invite a load of insects as well.
You want to ensure that your cooking stoves are cleaned after each use and any food wiped away before you store it away again for future use. This is particularly important if you have had a messy cook or food has boiled over. For most spills you can simply use warm water with dish soap in order to clean it.
For a deeper clean you need to take apart the stove to clean it properly which usually involves unscrewing the burner and taking off the rings and the bowl. Here you need to check the manifold or any drip trays for food that has spilled over and then clean them and rinse them off with warm water.
For grease and dirt build-up this is usually best removed with high pressure water which will be able to blast this off. This isn’t something that always needs to be done after each use so cleaning it properly when you get back home would be fine. Heavy-duty cleaners might damage the paint on the products so you always need to be aware of this.
Q: Is Propane Stove Safe?
A: It’s almost important to be safe when you are camping, whether that is applying sunscreen or using your stove. When it comes to lighting anything, propane has long been the fuel of choice for many appliances and with good reason. Propane like all fossil fuels can produce carbon monoxide when it’s burning so you should always make sure that the area is well-ventilated when you are using a propane tank.
You want to make sure that your propane tank complies with all the safety regulations and you also want to look out for propane tanks which have a safety valve which will allow propane to leave the tank if the pressure becomes too high. You should always try to store propane upright and in a well-ventilated area.
You always want to check the connection between your stove and the propane tank for any leaks and this should be done before each camping trip to ensure that you have a strong seal. If you’re having trouble lighting your stove when the gas is running then you need to shut everything down for a minute to let the gas disperse before trying again.
When using propane you simply have to take the natural step of precautions that you would expect to have to take. If you’re being reckless and not following guidelines then propane can become unsafe but if you’re doing everything correctly then you’ll be fine.
There is a reason all of these products use propane and that’s because it’s the best product out there for the job and is a tried and trusted method. As long as you take a common sense approach then using a propane stove is going to be safe.
Globo Surf Overview
Using a portable stove when you’re camping can be a great way to get great tasting food or boiling water wherever you are. A propane camp stove will be able to give you a consistent level of gas so that you’re able to cook almost as easily as you could when you’re at home. A camping stove and really take your camping experience on to another level.
Whether you are looking for a car camping stove or a backpacking stove, everything is covered here and you’ll be able to work out which option is best for you. Gas camp stoves are generally better for a more permanent camping solution such as car camping whereas there are options like a wood burning backpacking stove which negate the need to carry any gas takes and make a great hiking stove.
If you are hiking and don’t want to have the prospect of carrying a stove in your hands when there are ultralight camp stoves available but these will generally either run off fuel tablets or firewood and are generally a lot smaller as well as they have to be a compact camping stove in order to fit into your backpack.
If you have a more permanent camp then portability and weight become much less of an issue and you can focus on other factors such as their BTU rate and whether you want to get a propane model, natural gas or other options such as an alcohol camp stove. Key features to look out for here is whether you want a freestanding model or a table top one and when you have decided that making sure that they have a good ignition type, are stable and wind resistance are other key factors.
Once you have taken everything into account then you’ll be able to work out which is the top rated camp stove for you and your situation and hopefully this buying guide has given you the confidence to make the right choice. Once you’ve made your purchase then you will be able to head out onto your camping trip knowing that better food than ever is coming your way and constant hot water too.
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