Features to Consider: What Camping Stove Should I Buy?

Features to Consider: What Camping Stove Should I Buy?

If you love the great outdoors and enjoy the idea of cooking your food amidst nature’s splendour, then a good camping stove is an indispensable item in your gear. But with the myriad of options available in the market, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the best camping stove. To aide you in your quest, we’ve broken down the key features you need to consider when looking for the perfect outdoor stove. So, what camping stove should you buy? Let’s dive in and find out.

Types of Camping Stoves

To choose the best camping stove, it’s crucial to understand the different types available on the market. Here are some of the most common ones:

  1. Backpacking stoves: As the name suggests, these stoves are compact and lightweight, making them perfect for people who need to carry them in their backpacks. They are usually designed for boiling water or heating simple meals.
  2. Two-burner stoves: These stoves are larger and heavier but offer more power and a broader cooking area. They are best suited for group camping where more elaborate cooking is needed.
  3. Wood-burning stoves: Running on twigs and leaves, these stoves offer an eco-friendly option that negates the need for fuel. However, they may not be suitable for places where wood is scarce or open fires are prohibited.

Key Features to Consider

Once you get a sense of the type of camping stove that suits your needs, here are some specific features to consider:

Fuel Type

The choice of fuel type can significantly impact your camping stove choice. The most common fuel types include propane, liquid fuel (like white gas), and canister fuel (butane or isobutane).

  • Propane: This is arguably the most common camping stove fuel. It’s easy to use, burns hot, and works well in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Liquid fuel: These stoves run on white gas and are a favorite among winter campers and high-altitude adventurers due to their excellent performance under cold conditions.
  • Canister fuel: These lightweight, compact stoves are great for backpackers. However, their performance can decrease in cold weather, and their fuel canisters are not refillable, leading to waste.

Weight and Size

If you’re backpacking or hiking to your campsite, a lightweight and compact stove is vital. However, if you’re camping with a vehicle, you may opt for larger models with more features and more robust constructions.

Stove Power – BTU Rating

BTU, or British Thermal Units, is the measurement used to quantify the heat output from your stove. High BTU indicates a powerful stove that can boil water quickly and handle wind better. But remember, a higher BTU also means more fuel consumption.

Wind Resistance

It’s not uncommon for outdoor conditions to be windy, and having a camping stove with excellent wind resistance will ensure your cooking is not hampered. Some stoves have windshields, while others feature a low-profile design that naturally protects the burners from the wind.

Simmer Control

If you plan on doing more than just boiling water—like cooking gourmet camp meals—a stove with excellent simmer control is invaluable. It allows you to adjust the flame accurately and prevents your food from burning.

Additional Considerations

After you’ve focused on the key features of a camping stove, here are additional considerations that could sway your decision:

Setup and Ease of Use

Look for a stove that is easy to set up and use, especially in dark or cold conditions. Stoves with push-button ignition can be handy as they negate the need for matches or lighters.


Camping stove prices can vary dramatically. Determine your budget beforehand and remember that often, you get what you pay for. However, expensive does not always mean better. Value for money should always be the ultimate goal.


Picking the perfect camping stove is primarily about aligning the stove’s features with your specific outdoor cooking needs. Whether you’re a backpacker wanting a lightweight stove, a car camper looking for a substantial two-burner setup, or an eco-conscious outdoorsman in search of a wood-burning stove, choosing wisely will enhance your outdoor cooking experience.
Remember that the best camping stove is one that suits your cooking style, handles your preferred fuel, stands up to the weather you’ll encounter, and slides perfectly into your budget. Armed with these features and considerations, you’re now in a great position to shop for that indispensable camping stove with confidence.

By Kokoda Gear Uncategorized