Whether you are on a daytime outing with the family or camping for an extended period of time, there is no substitute for a good camping stove.
Even if it is only to make coffee. However, with so many choices available which stove is right for you?
Choosing the right stove for your camping trip is an important choice.
First lets take a look at the best camping stoves, then we’ll talk about how to choose the right one for your needs.
- Camp Chef Explorer 2 Burner Range
- Coleman Triton Series 2-Burner Stove
- Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove with Free Case
Here is a feature overview of the camping stoves with full reviews and our buying guide below.
The 3 Best Camping Stoves
Camping Stove Reviews
The Camp Chef Explorer 2-Burner Range stove is one of the most versatile units on the market with the durability and convenience not found in any other stove.
This stove is built for the rugged outdoors and is also great for family camping, tailgating, cooking if the power goes out. With its heavy weight construction and aluminum built burners there’s no question that this stove can handle whatever cooking needs you have.
Features of the Camp Chef Explorer:
- Total 60,00 BTUs / 30,000 BTUs per burner.
- 448 Square inch cooking area, able to fit two full size 14″ frying pans simultaneously.
- Hi Quality, easy-adaptable low to high heat controls.
- Sturdy lightweight metal alloy that wont rust or corrode.
- Many available accessories increasing its versatility.
With two 30,000 BTU cast aluminum burners the total cooking power over the 2 burner design has over 60,000 BTU heat output, significantly more than any other camping stove I tested. With over 448 square inches of cooking surface you can do some serious cooking. We found the Camp Chef to be the best family camping stove because of its large capacity.
It really is appropriately named, I was able to cook up a serious amount of hearty chili for 10 hungry people and an omelet breakfast and coffee on it that made waking up a pleasure for everyone.
The Camp Chef Explorer features a 3 sided windscreen to block out the wind and comes with home appliance like knobs unlike you will find on other camping stoves.
One other great aspect is that the 14 inch square cooking surface can fit 14 Blue Flame accessories to increase its versatility in its cooking options. The Camp Chef comes with a regulator, 3 foot hose which can be used with a bulk propane tank.
The Coleman Triton Series 2-burner stove has a large surface area for cooking with a high BTU output. This Coleman stove is built around a 16 oz. propane canister as the fuel source and has very simple connection to hook up the tank.
However, there is no is ignition source, so matches or a lighter are needed to ignite the burners. Constructed of a durable, long lasting steel, it is able to withstand any just about anything you throw at at it.
The Coleman Triton Series stove is a great blend of simple controls and durability for whatever you are needing to grill and cook. This great performing stove offer a sleek, lightweight design for easy transportability and being made of a robust nickel-chrome alloy, cleaning up is easy.
Features of the Coleman Triton:
- Total 22,00 BTUs / 11,000 BTUs per burner.
- Cook-top able to carry one 10-inch pan and one 12-inch pan simultaneously.
- Autonomous, easy-adaptable low to high heat controls.
- Sturdy lightweight metal alloy designed to endure foul weather conditions.
- Perfect Heat Technology allows for cooking temperature stability.
With two nice stove top burners, the Coleman Triton Series 2 makes for a good addition to anyone’s camping gear. The thin but strong nickel-chrome alloy is very light weight, at less than 10 pounds, its easy to take with you on any camping trip.
When you fold up the Triton Series 2 it measures, 21-inches long, 13.5-inches wide and 8-inches thick, allowing it to fit in any car and easy to store at your home or apartment. With its PerfectHeat technology this burner you get the exact temperature you need to cook up a gourmet meal.
The top lid also serves as a Windblock and the heavy duty nickel-chrome grates are easily cleanable. The Coleman Triton Series 2-burner does require a 16 ounce propane fuel cylinder and can also be operated on bulk propane tanks with a Type-1 adapter with hose.Don’t think of this as just a simple stove top burner. With its trademarked 2 folding Windblock shields its ability to block the grill from wind helps improve its efficiently which saves propane and time.
The top lid also serves as a Windblock and the heavy duty nickel-chrome grates are easily cleaned.
The Coleman Triton Series 2-burner stove is a great blend of easily adjustable controls and durability for whatever you are needing to grill and cook. We found the Triton to be the best portable propane stove.
The Coleman Triton Series 2-burner stove has a large area of cooking surface with a great burner output. With a surface area able to handle one 10 inch pan and one 12 inch pan at the same time with the power over 11,000 BTU’s per burner totaling 22,000 BTU’s of cooking power.
When considering the conditions you are cooking in and durability of a compact and portable stove top look no further than the Coleman Triton Series 2-Burner Stove. It is our top pick for a small portable camping stove.
If you want an inexpensive camping stove then look no further than the Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove. With a variety of features normally found on much larger and more expensive stoves, this compact and powerful gas Butane stove is good choice for your next camping trip.
The Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove is not going to cook up meals for an army so if you need that, then better to go with Camp Chef Explorer as it designed for that purpose.
No matches necessary, this unit has a piezoelectric ignition system to light the stove and keep it lit with the windshield designed to keep the flame protected. It features a simple but effective controls to control the temperature to give you the perfect temperature. For safety and saving propane, the stove comes with an automatic shut off value.
Even though its bargain priced, the unit is built to last. This is a good beginner camping stove or when there are only a few of you. Whats nice, is its so small and light, its perfect for not just camping but fishing, tailgate parties and picnics. We found the Deluxe Stove to be the best portable camp stove for the money.
The durable, free storage bag and carrying case will protect the stove when you are transporting it to and from the campsite. The Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove is a bargain price stove that will serve you well for many years.
How To Select The Right Camping Stove For Your Needs
Before buying your camping stove there are a few things you should consider. If you are backpacking then the stoves in this review are not for you. They all are meant to be driven to a camping site and setup. Some of them would need to be setup on a picnic table for instance. The Camp Chef Explorer has legs so it does not have this requirement.
Heat Output/Time to Cook
The stoves reviewed, range in BTU output from 60,000 with the Camp Chef Explorer with 2 burners to the basic, no-frills Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove with 7,000 BTU’s and only one burner. So it comes down to how many people are you cooking for, and what you are planning on cooking. If you are just looking to warm up some food for a few people, then the Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove may be sufficient for your needs.
But if your looking to do some real cooking for more than 2-3 people then I would go with the Camp Chef Explorer, its 60,000 BTU output will cook your food in no time.
Ease of Set-Up
The last thing you want while camping is a hassle of trying to setup your stove. The 3 stoves I review here are all quick and easy to setup. The Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove being the simplest, you literally just pull it out of the case and your ready to go. The Coleman Triton Series 2-Burner Stove just simply unfolds in about 15 seconds and your ready to go. The Camp Chef Explorer 2 Burner Range, takes a few more seconds to put on the legs and attach the propane tank.
Packed/Folded Up Size
Its no surprise the Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove is the smallest and most compact as it only has one burner. The Coleman Triton Series 2-Burner Stove folds up into a nice neat compact case, nothing extra to pack or lose. The Camp Chef Explorer 2 Burner Range is the largest and heaviest of the stoves. When you take the legs off, it stores easily in your car though.
Blocking the wind can make a significant difference in both just lighting the stove but in cooking times. No surprise here, keeping the wind from blowing the flames all over the place, decreases the time to cook your food. The two best performers here, were the Coleman Triton Series and the Camp Chef Explorer, each of which comes with a decent wind screen. The Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove does not come with one, so if you think your going to be in some windy conditions, you will need to have some shelter from the wind.
Ease of Care/Cleaning
All the the reviewed stoves are pretty low maintenance, its pretty much a given a camping stove is going to get dirty and will need to be taken apart to be thoroughly cleaned at some point. In this area, the Camp Chef Explorer was hands down the winner. Its very easy to take apart and remove all the food particles and grease that accumulates over time. The Colemen Triton was a close second however with the Deluxe Portable Gas Butane Stove coming in a distant third. It could be a pain to take apart and clean it as the didn’t seem to be designed to be easily disassembled.