Whether you’re heading on a multi-day trek or kicking back on the campsite, a camping stove is a must-pack item. From a quick meal to warm you up after a gruelling leg of your trek to whipping up a feast at your campsite, camping stoves help fuel up for wherever your adventures take you. But with different kinds of stoves and fuel options available, knowing which is best can be a tricky business. To ensure you’re the envy of your camp, no matter where you head or what challenges you face, we’ve put together this all-you-need-to-know guide to camping stoves.  


When choosing the right camping stove, you need to think about the kind of trips you’ll be doing, from where you’re heading and what you want to cook to how many you’ll be cooking for. For example, if you’re planning a summer of camping trips with friends and family in tow, you’ll want a large stove with multiple burners so you can cook up a feast for everyone. However, if you’re planning a high-altitude expedition, an all-in-one lightweight and compact stove will be more than up to the task.


Trust us, finding a model that best matches your needs will make all the difference when you head outdoors, so it’s best to be realistic about your needs. 

Backpacking Stoves

Backpacking stoves are designed to be portable and accompany you on all kinds of adventures. Lightweight and compact, they are easy to pack and carry, yet they produce a powerful heat source that enables you to heat drinks and food quickly and efficiently, even in the most remote locations.


There are three main types of backpacking stoves: canister stoves, stove systems and liquid fuel stoves. Below we give you the lowdown on each to help you decide which is the best for your next trip.



Canister stoves are lightweight and versatile, making them a top choice when size, weight and convenience are paramount. 


Most canister stoves feature a stovetop that screws into a resealable pressurised gas canister. But, you can get canister stoves that sit low to the ground and connect to the fuel source via a fuel line. These tend to be more stable in challenging conditions or uneven terrain, so are worth considering if you don’t know what you’re up against.


Some canister stoves come with convenient auto-igniters for quick and easy lighting, while for others, you may need to bring along matches, a lighter or a fire streel to get them started. 


Most stoves will come with a simmer control function to allow you to control the flame when cooking. Another feature to look out for is a pressure regulator which helps maintain fast boil times even in cold weather or with low fuel levels.




Technically a type of canister stove, these systems feature an all-in-one design for maximum efficiency and convenience. The burner screws onto the top of a gas canister, and the cooking pot screws onto the burner. Once done, the nesting design allows you to pack everything away neatly and takes up minimal space in your backpack.


Stove systems are super-efficient, but cooking space is limited, as many systems feature high sides and a narrow base. However, they can’t be beaten for speed and efficiency when it comes to boiling water fast for hot drinks and dehydrated food.   



If you need a stove that will perform in the harshest conditions, a liquid fuel stove is your best option. Known as the workhorse of the stove world, these stoves work at nearly any temperature or altitude, are dependable and will burn many different fuels, which means that they can be particularly advantageous in the more remote parts of the world.


White gas, paraffin/kerosene, and unleaded petrol are some of the most common options, but the beauty of liquid stoves is that you can use what’s available.


You need to bear in mind that liquid fuel stoves need priming to get the fuel vapourised for clean combustion. To do this, you have to pressurise the fuel bottle and then preheat the burner. Once preheated, you can release the fuel and get cooking.


They are also at their best when used with a windshield as this helps shelter the flame, increases heat retention and improves efficiency. 


Liquid stoves are also relatively high maintenance compared to gas stoves. There are more parts to get clogged up, so you need the appropriate maintenance kit, as spares may not be readily available in less populated areas.


Campsite Stoves

Although technically portable, campsite stoves are more suited to trips where you’re based at a campsite and only moving the stove from the car to your cooking table. 


Campsite stoves are generally much larger and sturdier than backpacking stoves and feature a wider base and lower centre of gravity, so that they can withstand heavier pots and pans. This makes them great when you’re cooking for a crowd, as they offer you more flexibility to get creative.


The larger burner also helps distribute heat and prevents hotspots from forming, which can quickly burn your food.


Like most things, campsite stoves come in an array of different shapes, sizes and numbers of burners available, so it’s easy to find the best option for your trips. For the gourmet, you can even get campsite stoves with a built-in grill. 


Other features you may want to look out for include some form of wind protection for better fuel efficiency, simmer controls so you can adjust the burners and fold-out legs for increased stability.


For that authentic camping experience, portable reusable barbecues are a must. Although they don’t pack down small and can be fairly heavy, if you’re only carrying them from the car to your campsite or picnic spot, this shouldn’t be a problem. 


It goes without saying that you should never leave your barbecue unattended because of the risk of fire, but it’s also important when barbecuing to remember to leave no trace. Dispose of any ash responsibly and ensure that you don’t leave any embers as they can quickly reignite and cause fires. 

Camping Stove Accessories

Hopefully, by now, you’ve sussed out the best type of stove for your next camp, so now’s the time to start thinking about accessories. From windshields, fuel and windproof matches, so you can light up in all conditions, to pots and pans and even nutritional dehydrated foods, we’ve got everything you need to stay fueled up wherever your adventures take you. 

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