7 Best Wood-Burning Backpacking Stoves That Won’t Leave You Cold
Last updated: Apr 04, 2020
65Hours of Research
Whether you are a regular or occasional backpacker, there’s no question that a stove will be one of the most essential items on your packing list. By selecting and carrying with you the best wood-burning backpacking stove on every trip you undertake you free up space in your bag, making it lighter as a result, and can set up your stove in a matter of seconds, using items from the environment around you. Here you can place things in it to burn such as twigs, wood, pine cones, and leaves, making this an entirely eco-friendly choice.
This review takes a detailed look at seven fantastic bestselling wood burning backpacking stoves that are currently retailing on the market. Focusing on such features which we believe to be the most essential when purchasing these items, we highlight the weight and dimensions, the design, the ease of use, boiling time, and ease of setting up and taking down, alongside any additional characteristics of each model. We then attempt to summarize any pros or indeed any possible cons which come to light during our reviewing process.
Top 7 Wood-Burning Backpacking Stoves review 2020
By researching the marketplace for you, we’ve presented seven of those better models on the market, offering you our expert rating based on our extensive reviewing knowledge. Presenting our findings in a thoroughly informative table and in-detail reviews below, we’ve also developed a helpful buying guide and answered some of those frequently asked questions. We’re confident that all of this information combined will help you to make that best wood-burning backpacking stove purchase.
The Solo Stove Lite is our Editor’s choice and Backpacker Magazine’s choice for the number one wood-burning backpacking stove! This is a thoroughly compact model which aims to both save you money as you never have to revert to buying fuel, and at the same time works to save the planet through its ultra-efficient minimized footprint.
With a patented design, this model has less smoke than others on the market, as its design incorporates a unique double wall creating secondary combustion through ultra-clean gasification. Therefore, what you place inside this burns entirely as a result and means less smoke as an effect. The best part of this is that you don’t need any fuel to operate it, which makes it more efficient and faster when traveling. With the Solo Stove Lite, you can use what is around you with leaves, twigs, wood, and pinecones in replacement of gas or liquid fuel.
Lightweight in overall design, this is a rather space-saving and compact product, weighing a mere nine ounces. Comprised of premium stainless steel and with nichrome wire, there is a selection of vent holes all around this stove to increase the air pulled in, encouraging a hotter burn in quick time. Aiming to bring your water to boil in just eight to ten minutes, you can heat 34 fl. oz for one to two people. A nylon stuff sack is also included with this purchase.
Customers of the Solo Stove Lite find this an exceptionally highly efficient solution which heats in quick time and is perfect for traveling.
Another Solo Stove, but this time the Titan model, this gets our vote for the Best Larger Wood-Burning Backpacking Stove. Once again, recommended by the experts at Backpacker Magazine, this is a slightly larger take on the Lite model with its larger overall dimensions in size and stature. However, this model can accommodate two to four people as it brings your water to the boil, all 34 fl oz of it, within just four to six minutes flat, producing slightly quicker times than that of the Lite.
Once again, this is a more practical choice regarding its patented design as there is less smoke derived from this model meaning what you place in it can burn more completely – with no need to add any fuel as such. This stove relies on simple natural materials found around you as you camp and trek, including wood, leaves, twigs, and pinecones. This means all you have to do is carry the stove on your travels, rather than that and the additional fuel that so many other stoves need to work. With an overall compact and space-saving design implemented throughout, you’ll also receive a stiff nylon sack with this model – therefore you can just place it in your bag and go. No fans or batteries needed in operation, the Solo Stove Titan is engineered to burn at its hottest rate, making good use of the additional vent holes displayed around it.
Customers of the Solo Stove Titan find this burns well and clearly and is an essential item to have when out and about, needing no advance preparation.
The Firebox G2 Bushcraft Camping Stove gets our choice for the Best Wood-Burning Folding Backpacking Stove as it’s a collapsible and folding model which makes it thoroughly practical, portable, and efficient for camping and trekking further afield. This is a versatile purchase as all accessories are included here, meaning it is immediately ready to begin using. With four fire sticks, a detachable ash pan, the great concept of this model is that it can be fueled in several different ways. Therefore, you can use pre-fuel, the side or top, or you can even attempt the Swedish Torch Method which is a revolutionary way of cooking!
Constantly maintaining flame to pan contact, this model has the highest BTU output, which means it has an exhaust capacity that encourages more combustion air, therefore supporting pre-fueling. The result of this is that you can boil two cups of water in just under three minutes! Perfectly efficient in its design and construction, it relies on thicker stainless steel than most stoves and utilizes an engineered expansion management system. This ensures that it’s stronger in build and will not flex or slide throughout continued use – ultimately making this thoroughly safe in use each time. The Firebox G2 has two smaller feed ports, instead of the usual one, which prevents most debris from falling out, even when your chamber is on full burn. This is fully supported by a four-panel hinged folding design.
Customers of the Firebox G2 Bushcraft Camping Stove find this a high-quality stove that, once you get used to setting it up, offers many cooking and baking options.
The überleben Stöker Flatpack Stove is the perfect addition for all backpackers, campers, occasional adventurers, and even for those emergency bushcraft survival needs. This model also gets Amazon’s Choice for the Best Bushcraft Gear product.
Designed with an aim to keep you on the move and fueled by eliminating any need to buy fuel ever again, here you can use entirely organic matter to keep your stove burning. Just select what’s around you including sticks, twigs, moss, bark, pine needles, and pine cones, and you’ll never have to stock up or carry any extras throughout your entire trip. Offering a more minimalist of designs through its flat-pack qualities, this is entirely lightweight and has a simple five-panel design which can be erected and then laid flat within a matter of seconds.
Constructed of stainless steel, it’s a durable product, which is anti-corrosive and extremely strong when in use. Included with your purchase is a handy and robust wearing canvas sleeve for ease of use when packing it away into your backpack. What’s more, if you rely on the finer details, this is an unwaxed canvass sleeve which is entirely natural in its makeup. As a further bonus, if you wish you can also choose to use charcoal, a combination with an alcohol stove, and even Esbit tablets with this model. Therefore, it offers a broader scope of possibilities than that of many of its similar counterparts.
Customers of the überleben Stöker Flatpack Stove rate highly the design of this models air flow in reducing boiling time while requiring the minimal amount of effort overall.
The TOAKS Titanium Backpacking Wood Burning Stove is our choice for the Best Titanium Stove. As if that weren’t enough accolade, it’s also a previous winner of the Outdoor Industry awards. This is a backpacking stove which is aimed at those backpacking and who are looking for a lightweight and compact model to throw into their bag and go.
Made of titanium, there are three parts to this model which can all be stacked into one another ready for placing straight into the accompanying nylon sturdy sack that comes with your purchase. It can also nest neatly in two of the Toaks pots, at 1100 ml and 1600 ml sizes, as well as a Toaks cup measuring 450 ml. With the ability to burn most natural items found on your camping and trekking trips, here you can start your fire with wood, twigs, leaves, and pinecones to create a high-efficiency fire to warm water or cook food items.
This is a very easy to light model which is constructed and designed to offer optimized gas intake through its second and third combustion mechanism. Therefore, this stove really does work well and enables you to get your fire set up and burning within very little time at all. Claimed to offer very little in the way of smoke when in use, this is the preferred choice of stove for those looking to reduce their traveling kit as the lightweight titanium materials ensure you hardly realize you’re carrying it with you.
Customers of the TOAKS Titanium Backpacking Wood Burning Stove state this is an extremely lightweight solution which is simple to use and very well designed.
The BioLite CampStove is our selection for the Best Dual-Purpose Stove as not only does this offer stove like qualities but you can also use this to turn fire into electricity! This is a lightweight and thoroughly portable camp stove which allows you to boil water and cook a variety or meals outdoors all within minutes – but also encourages you to charge your devices simultaneously! This is perfect for those times when you’re out and about and in desperate need of your mobile charging. It works by capturing the waste heat from the fire you start and then converts this heat into electricity. This then powers a fan sending electricity to its USB charging port. It will then store excess power in its internal battery, creating in total around three watts of useable electricity. So, if you carry on trekking or hiking and then need to charge an appliance, you can use what’s left even without starting a live fire.
Additionally, there is more power created using this stove, and it has four fan speed settings on its internal jets to increase the circulation of air, providing improved efficiency and combustion. This makes it possible to boil one liter of water in just 4.5 minutes. There’s even a smart LED dashboard here which offers you real-time feedback on things such as power output, fan speed settings, and the fire strength! Easily folded up for transporting, this is a portable and durable design which is perfect for backpacking, camping and also any power outages.
Customers of the BioLite CampStove love being able to utilize its self-contained stove and charging facility, noting how durable it is.
The Lixada Camping Stove is our Budget Pick here as it is offered at an unbeatable price. It is also Amazon’s choice for best Lixada Camping Stove. This is a simplistic looking but hugely practical model which fairs exceptionally well against a gas stove. It is designed as a space saver and will not take up much room in your backpack nor will it add any additional weight, seeing as it’s only 15.8 ounces overall. However, the best concept of this stove is that it doesn’t require you to spend any extra money on fuel and you can use a range of pinecones, dry grass, leaves, and twigs which encourage a more environmentally friendly burn, therefore reducing those problematic chemical gas emissions.
Rust-proof and sturdy in its overall construction, this is a foldable stove which is made using high-quality stainless steel. Being anti-rust makes it perfect for outdoor use, and it can cope with a heavy weight placed upon it and a high heat level each time. Offering a larger opening so you can swiftly and safely add your items to burn, once you’ve finished using the Lixada, you just collapse it and place it back in the storage bag included for additional carrying convenience while freeing up space in your backpack. Setting it up is just as easy to do, with it installed within only twenty seconds flat! This model is sizeable enough to boil water to cook with a small or medium sized pot.
Customers of the Lixada Camping Stove thoroughly recommend this as essential when traveling, with it being the perfect cooking and heating companion.
Great low price
Larger opening for burning
Storage bag included
Claims of it being difficult to fill and keep material inside throughout use
By now, we hope we’ve offered you a clearer idea of the bests types of wood burning backpacking stoves that are out there on the market. Having read through our seven detailed product reviews, why not take a look at our extensive and thoroughly helpful buying guide before you make that final decision? The following section aims to elaborate on those features we mentioned above, explaining what we consider to be the more critical when purchasing such a product as this to take with you on your travels.
Why choose a wood-burning backpacking stove?
A word burning backpacking stove is the perfect addition when traveling as it is a lightweight and extremely portable appliance, delivering fantastic results each time you stop throughout your journey. However, perhaps one of the most significant advantages of choosing such a stove as this is the ability to travel with just the stove and not have to lug around any other heavy and awkward fuel solutions alongside it. As a wood-burning stove can be operated with natural matter from the immediate environment around you, you merely lay out your stove and collect your material wherever you stop. Not only is this a better space-saving solution but is also a more environmentally friendly choice. Furthermore, it is a useful stove which will allow you to boil water, cook, and provide heat as you take a break, and all within quick succession.
Features to consider before you buy a backpacking stove
We believe that there are a certain number of select elements that our reviewed wood burning backpacking stoves all offer to ensure that you get the very best from such a practical appliance when out and about on your adventure. However, though we feel we have chosen these model types to offer you the penultimate in benefits, we also highly recommend that you take your time to ensure that your selected model has everything that you require for your personal circumstances. All these reviewed models have been chosen for their ability to offer you the most essential of features that you will most certainly need from such a product type as this. In this buying guide section, we attempt to explain such features in a little more detail.
Folding open-fire or gasification stove type
If you’re looking to do away with the usual camping fuel and would instead use what you can naturally find and source from around you, then an open fire type is the better solution. As the material needed here is to be found free of charge and almost everywhere, you will be able to save yourself a lot of money in the process as well as traveling lighter as a result.
However, though gasification stoves usually take up more space, some people may prefer the speed that such a stove can offer when initially igniting them, as compared to a folding open fire option.
Weight of a stove
The weight of your chosen stove may be a more prominent feature in your checklist if you’re planning on traveling for longer times and distances with this stove in your backpack. These wood burning backpacking stoves are all the lighter of model weights on the market as we fully believe that all backpackers want to work to reduce the weight vigorously they carry with them each trip. Therefore, the weights of the stove range here from a mere 0.5 pounds, that is the TOAKS Titanium Stove or the Solo Stove Lite, to just 2.06 pounds, as in the BioLite CampStove. It’s worth noting regarding weight that you will not be carrying any other items such as additional fuel with these stove types so have a greater scope when selecting your chosen model.
Quality and materials used
The quality of your chosen stove should ensure that when it is erect, it can safely hold a select number of items you want to place on top of it, such as pots, pans and kettles, all the while doing so carefully. The materials used in its makeup will, therefore, determine how durable your stove is and remains over time through continued setup, folding down, and indeed usage. All these models here are designed using stainless steel which is the perfect material for such a product, with the TOAKS Titanium Stove offering a variance with a more lightweight material of titanium instead.
Where possible we’ve attempted to include in our features just how many people you will be able to boil water for concerning cup numbers. This type of information is especially worth considering if you are heading out in a small group and want to be able to ensure you can get enough water boiled in the one attempt, or whether you’ll need to do it in a few tries to ensure everyone gets a cup of tea or coffee. This may indeed make up your mind as to what sized model you choose to select here. The Solo Stove Titan aims to give out enough water for up to four cups each time, with the other models aiming to provide, on average, at least two cups each.
Boiling time will become an essential factor when you are out and about and desperate for that sought after the first cup of tea of the day, as you stop for a well-deserved break on your travels. We have tried to include the information here as to how long each stove will take to boil your water, and the results range from anything from two minutes to just under ten minutes overall. Of course, this boiling time will depend and vary slightly on the amount of water which you choose to boil each time. But, as a guide, the Solo Stove Titan works excellently here at an average of four to six minutes, with the Firebox G2 Bushcraft Camping Stove offering an exceptional time of just 2.30 minutes flat!
If you’re planning on spending a significant amount of money when initially purchasing your wood burning backpacking stove, you may want to consider whether it comes complete with a warranty. This can offer you additional peace of mind and keep you covered if something were to happen to your stove and you require it fixing or even replacing at short notice.
Usage tips for wood-burning backpacking stoves
Be sure you’re allowed to use your wood burning stove in your designated area before you start to light it. Some parks and wooded areas may have specific rules to be followed or just not allow such activity
Place it on as flat a surface as possible
Never leave your stove unattended at any time
Remember your stove will be extremely hot to the touch
Note how long you’ll be stopping for as such stoves are not designed for quick stops, and will need time to cool down before you can pack them away or move on
Ensure it is extinguished fully
Allow it to cool down completely
Always use it in the open air and never be tempted to use it indoors
Make sure only adults use the stove and that any nearby children are supervised
Pack it away carefully
Keep it completely secure when traveling
We’ve offered a wide range of wood burning backpacking stoves here, and all at a varied price range. From just under $30 to a maximum $130, you may wish to purchase a more budget model, such as the Lixada Camping Stove or one which offers a great deal more than just heating water and making fire, such as the BioLite CampStove. Hopefully, these seven models show how it doesn’t have to be a costly purchase and that the benefits of owning such a product far outweigh any initial costs.
As these stoves will be holding regular fires, they’re indeed bound to become quite dirty over time! However, this expected build-up can easily be cleaned if you just rinse it away with cold tap water after every use. Once the stove has cooled down completely, pack it away in a designated sack. Though the presentation of your stove will most likely not be an issue when you’re out and about, you may want to give it a more thorough clean out when you do return home from your trip. You can do this with some warm soapy water, being careful not to use any abrasive material, and then drying it thoroughly before packing it away again.
If you’re hiking for a more extended period, the weight of your stove will be of considerable importance. However, each of these models has been selected with this factor in mind and are all the more lightweight of appliances to pack in your bag. If you are particularly concerned about this, look for a model which not only offers a lighter overall weight, such as the TOAKS Titanium Stove but one which has improved folding properties, such as the Firebox G2 Bushcraft Camping Stove. Being able to collapse your stove and subsequently pack it away neatly will also play a factor regarding weight distribution.
Though some people like to take pellets with them to burn, the manufacturers of such wood burning stoves do not recommend using such items. Pellets and charcoal will burn at an extremely high temperature and therefore not breathe as the more natural of waste will. Besides the impracticality of carrying such addition weight, these stoves are designed to work perfectly with the natural environment around them, so it’s advisable to stick to twigs, wood, leaves, and pinecones here.
A wood burning stove can be quite challenging to use in testing conditions such as high winds and indeed wet weather. Though most stoves will not be practical appliances when it rains, the problems with a woodburning stove that relies on wood items as twigs and leaves can become problematic when such material matter is damp. If your trip is particularly fraught with wet conditions, you may want to collect a small amount of dry material as soon as you can or at least wait until what you do find is dried out enough to start burning. Likewise, if the conditions are windy, you may want to shelter your stove from the direction of the wind to keep it running by making a kind of barrier between you.
Our top pick here and editor’s choice is the Solo Stove Lite for its all-around practicality, offering fast and efficient solutions when out and about. Our second choice here is the Solo Stove Titan as it provides all the qualities of its smaller counterpart alongside utilizing a space-saving design. Thirdly, the
We hope this informative review has given you a better insight into the fantastic properties a wood burning backpacking stove can offer you, alongside how you too can make the best of such appliances when out and about on your travels. We’re confident that by making the use of our buying guide alongside noting the detailed discussions on each of these reviewed models, you now have all the information to hand that you need to help get the best wood burning backpacking stove for your individual needs.