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Best Backpacking Stove of 2024

Maya Rivera

Written by Maya Rivera

From Utah canyons to Thailand cliffs, Maya is a rock climbing aficionado who enjoys a bit of camping and hiking in the off-season.

This post was last updated on April 23, 2024.

Best Backpacking Stove of 2024

When it comes to backpacking, every gram counts. That’s why the cooking stove you choose to carry can make all the difference between an enjoyable meal out in the wilderness and a burdensome cookout. The good news is that we've done the hard part for you. We've spent countless nights under the stars testing a variety of models, and we've found the best of the best, taking into account criteria such as weight, stability, fuel efficiency, and a whole lot more.

The unequivocal winner is the MSR PocketRocket 2. This lightweight champion packs a hefty punch, delivering impressive performance while remaining conveniently compact. Perfect for both solo adventurers and group outings, it ticks all the essential boxes.

Of course, we understand that not every hiker, backpacker, or mountaineer has the same needs or budget. That's why we've also included great recommendations for All-in-One, Budget, Ultralight, and Wood Burning stoves. Check out our guides, too, for Best Dehydrated Meals for Backpacking, Best Sporks, and Best Camping Cookware Sets, and get all the gear you need for your next outdoor trip.

Our Top Recommendations

Our Top Pick

8.3 /10
MSR PocketRocket 2 Backpacking Stove
MSR PocketRocket 2
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
9
Time to Boil
7
Weight
9

The MSR PocketRocket 2 takes our top pick spot because it's simple and straight-forward use, has a compact, ultralight design, and is one of the cheaper options in the backpacking stove market.

Runner Up #1

8.0 /10
Soto Windmaster Backpacking Stove
Soto Windmaster
Ease of Use
9
Simmering
8
Time to Boil
8
Weight
7

The Soto Windmaster is a great choice if you're looking for a built in ignitor, and aren't worried about a little bit of extra weight and bulk.

Runner Up #2

7.5 /10
MSR PocketRocket Deluxe Backpacking Stove
MSR PocketRocket Deluxe
Ease of Use
6
Simmering
9
Time to Boil
8
Weight
7

The MSR PocketRocket Deluxe is the upgraded version of our top pick. It has a more modern burner design and a built in ignitor, but at the cost of a bit of extra weight. It loses points in the Ease of Use category due to some reports of an unreliable ignitor.

What you should look for

(and what we test for)

Fuel Type

Consider the type of fuel the stove uses, as some will need specific cartridges or liquid fuel which may be tricky to find on longer treks.

Stove Weight

Make sure to check the weight of the stove; while some models are light as a feather, others can add unexpected pounds to your pack.

Cooking Speed

Think about how quick you want your food and drinks ready, because stoves can vary dramatically in their boiling times and overall cooking speed.

Weather Resistance

Be sure your chosen stove can hold its own against wind and cold, since nothing ruins a camping trip quicker than a stove that fails in adverse weather conditions.

8.3 /10

MSR PocketRocket 2

$59.95
The Best Backpacking Stove

Based on our research and testing, we think the MSR PocketRocket 2 is the best Backpacking Stove on the market right now, for anyone looking to play hard outside.

MSR PocketRocket 2 Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
9
Time to Boil
7
Weight
9

Reasons to Buy

  • Extremely Compact and portable
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Affordable and good value for money
  • Great reputation and positive user reviews

Reasons to Avoid

  • Doesn't perform optimally in windy conditions
  • Manual ignition, no automatic igniter included

The MSR PocketRocket 2 is a standout choice in the realm of portable stoves, securing our top pick spot with its ultralight and compact design. It effortlessly fits into a pot alongside a propane canister, lighter and pot holder, making it an ideal companion for backpacking. It's ability to simmer is great. It's also one of the cheaper backpacking stoves on the market, which makes it fantastic value.

While the PocketRocket 2's boil time is reasonably good (and does great with simmering), it does have some limitations in windy environments. But wind sheilds are cheap (I made one out of tinfoil that weighs nothing and folds down small) so we don't put too much weight in how it performs in the wind. Another point to consider is the absence of a built-in piezo ignitor, a feature increasingly common in backpacking stoves. Ignitors are nice to have but can be finnicky, and given that most outdoor enthusiasts carry matches or a lighter anyway, this omission isn't a significant drawback. If you do want an ignitor, check out the MSR PocketRocket Deluxe, our #2 top pick. It's the upgraded version of this stove (with a piezo ignitor).

The metal lever that controls the burn rate is remarkably easy to operate, even when wearing gloves, which is a handy feature in colder conditions. The stove’s metal arms are sufficiently large to provide stable support for pots, ensuring cooking stability for any pot up to about 2 pepole. However, for larger groups of three or more, you might need to consider larger pot sizes and larger stoves. Overall, the MSR PocketRocket 2's combination of simplicity, efficiency, and practicality makes it an excellent choice for backpackers and outdoor enthusiasts.

The MSR PocketRocket2 is tiny
The MSR PocketRocket2 is tiny
On top of a canister and ready to use.
On top of a canister and ready to use.
The included case is nice but I don't typically use it.
The included case is nice but I don't typically use it.
With a pot on top of it.
With a pot on top of it.
Packed with a canister and pot holder.
Packed with a canister and pot holder.
8.0 /10

Soto Windmaster

$69.95
Runner Up

Based on our research and testing, we think the Soto Windmaster is a great choice if you're looking for a backpacking stove to go play hard outside with, if our top pick isn't quite what you're looking for.

Soto Windmaster Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
9
Simmering
8
Time to Boil
8
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Extremely wind-resistant
  • Sleek compact design
  • Easily adjustable flame control
  • Efficient fuel use

Reasons to Avoid

  • Pricey for a backpacking stove
  • Need to buy fuel canister separately
  • Pot stand can be tricky to use

The Soto Windmaster is a backpacking stove that's received some pretty solid feedback from the outdoor community because of its top-end functionality and design. This stove might be a lightweight piece at just 67 grams, but don't mistake its lack of weight for lack of power. It kicks out a significant amount of heat, making it an invaluable tool when out in the wilderness.

What's particularly great about the Windmaster is its namesake - wind resistance. This little guy stands up to gusty conditions surprisingly well, thanks to its in-built concave burner design and its unique pot support system that helps to minimize the effects of wind. There's nothing quite as frustrating as staring at a lukewarm can of beans because the wind keeps messing with your stove, and with the Soto Windmaster, folks have found this to be pretty much a non-issue.

Users have commented on the excellent fuel efficiency of this stove. It uses a technology called 'Micro Regulator' that maintains a consistent output in all weather conditions. This really helps in reducing the amount of fuel you need to carry on your trip, every ounce counts when you're backpacking, right?

The Soto Windmaster isn't without its criticisms though. Some customers felt that while the Windmaster excelled in windier conditions, it was somewhat less effective during calm, still weather. And, even though this stove is a big hit with its heat output, a few users have expressed some concerns about its simmer control not being as precise as they'd want.

Notably, a handful of users have written in their reviews that they found the ignition process not always being reliable on the first try. It seems to require a few clicks now and then to get it going, but they also said once it's up and burning, it holds its flame confidently.

The Soto Windmaster, overall, is one of the best backpacking stoves on the market today. It has managed to strike the right balance between power, efficiency, and weight. Users have largely shared positive experiences, making it a reliable option for adventurers who demand performance from their gear.

7.5 /10

MSR PocketRocket Deluxe

$84.95
Runner Up

Based on our research and testing, we think the MSR PocketRocket Deluxe is a great choice if you're looking for a backpacking stove to go play hard outside with, if our top pick isn't quite what you're looking for.

MSR PocketRocket Deluxe Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
6
Simmering
9
Time to Boil
8
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Fantastic heat control
  • Reliable ignite feature
  • Portable size
  • Solid build quality

Reasons to Avoid

  • Slightly expensive
  • Can be unstable with larger pots
  • Can struggle in windy conditions

If you're looking for a little powerhouse on your outdoor adventures, the MSR PocketRocket Deluxe is your go-to buddy. It's a compact, lightweight stove that will take up almost no room in your backpack, yet packs the kind of punch you'd expect from a much larger stove.

Its design is super easy to use. Whether you're a seasoned outdoor adventurer, or it's your first time trailblazing, you'll find it a breeze to get this stove up and running. Users consistently comment on its super easy setup, and how no-fuss the Piezo ignition is - you'll have that water boiling for your morning coffee in no time!

Performance wise, the MSR PocketRocket Deluxe knocks it out of the park. Consumers have praised its outstanding boil time, and how it works efficiently even in harsh weather. MSR calls it 'consistent output in cold weather' and users certainly vouch for that, stating it worked perfectly during windy conditions, high elevations, even in the snow!

Let's talk about its lightness. Weighing in around 2.9 ounces, this stove is basically a featherweight champ, perfect for those needing to keep their backpacks as light as possible. Don't let that fool you however, users also talk about its rugged durability, with some adding they'd used their PocketRocket for years, and can always rely on its dependability.

It's mostly roses, but there are a few thorns. The biggest one being stability. Several customers mention that the design, while impressive in its compactness, leaves a little bit to be desired when it comes to locking the stove on a canister, which could potentially cause issues when cooking a larger meal.

Another slight drawback pointed out by users is its simmer control. Even though the PocketRocket Deluxe offers adjustable simmer control, some users have found it to be a little bit finicky, making precise adjustments a little tricky.

That said, the MSR PocketRocket Deluxe is favorably reviewed by the vast majority of users, finding its way to the top of many backpacking stoves lists. For those with a focus on weight and reliability, this little powerhouse delivers, and looks to remain a solid choice among enthusiasts and beginners alike.

6.5 /10

Soto Amicus

Best Budget Backpacking Stove

Based on our research and testing, we think the Soto Amicus is a great pick if you're looking for a backpacking stove that is more budget friendly, without sacrificing too much in quality.

Soto Amicus Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
6
Time to Boil
5
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Affordable price point
  • Compact design for easy packability
  • Impressive fuel efficiency
  • Integrated igniter

Reasons to Avoid

  • Doesn't heat as quick as pricier models
  • Lightweight material might not hold up under rough treatment
  • Tiny pot supports can be a bit finicky

Let's chat about the Soto Amicus. This budget-friendly backpacking stove is a real diamond in the rough when it comes to affordability and function. It's no surprise that it's garnered some rave reviews from people snapping up a bargain that doesn't sacrifice performance on the trail.

What stands out about the Soto Amicus is its compact design. It's small and light enough to slip into any crammed backpack, without feeling like you’re lugging around a house brick. What's more, despite its size, it punches way above its weight when it comes to boiling your water or whipping up meals in a jiffy.

Users also loved just how sturdy this stove is. You won't have any toppling pots here, the Amicus is designed with a four-pronged support that's capable of holding even wider pots steady. As many users point out online, this allows for a more generous meal capacity if you're cooking for more than just yourself out in the wilderness.

Another major talking point was the Soto Amicus's wind resistance. Users found that even when your camping spot is more breezy than calm, the concave burner design does an excellent job at withstanding wind. It acts like a little fortress surrounding your flame and keeps it going strong, making it an absolute winner in windy conditions. Quite a few users mentioned that this feature outperforms more expensive stoves they have used making it a solid choice for unpredictable weather.

Now, while the Soto Amicus is indeed an impressive stove, it's not without some niggles. There have been a few grumbles online about the compatibility of the screw thread with certain gas canisters. A handful of users reported difficulty attaching it, which can be a bit of a dampener when you’re exhausted and just want that quick cuppa. However, once you’re past this initial hurdle, it seems to function fine.

The lack of an ignition system also came under fire by some users. While it keeps the stove simple and the cost down, it does mean you need to carry a lighter or matches, which is one more thing to remember on your packing list. That being said, many users still thought that for the budget price and rock-solid performance, it was a minor inconvenience at worst.

No prices found. Check back later!

8.0 /10

Snow Peak LiteMax Stove

$59.95
Best Ultralight Backpacking Stove

Based on our research and testing, we think the Snow Peak LiteMax Stove is a solid choice for those looking for a lightweight backpacking stove option to go play hard outside with.

Snow Peak LiteMax Stove Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
7
Time to Boil
8
Weight
9

Reasons to Buy

  • Super lightweight
  • Compact design
  • Easy to use
  • Powerful heat output
  • Efficient fuel use

Reasons to Avoid

  • Slightly expensive
  • Pots can be a tad unstable
  • Sturdiness could be better

The Snow Peak LiteMax Stove is a darling in the Ultralight category for seasoned backpackers and casual campers alike. With a featherweight of just 2 ounces, this stove is a dream for those who prioritize light packing but don't want to compromise on performance. Sleek design and compactness bribe the eye, and it fits easily into the nooks and crannies of your pack, saving up valuable space. The burner head and pot supports are constructed from high quality, durable titanium, ensuring longevity despite its small size.

This minimalist stove stands out for its efficient fuel consumption. When you are miles away from civilization, every drop of fuel counts, and the LiteMax brings food to boil in a respectable time with less gas than most competitors. Its design utilizes the windscreen feature effectively, which comes as a relief when you find yourself in less than ideal weather conditions.

An attribute that buyers rave about online is the LiteMax's simple, easy-to-use design. You're probably out there to enjoy nature, not to wrestle with a rebellious stove. Clear directions and intuitive setup ensure you’re enjoying your well-deserved meal in no time.

However, some users have pointed out an issue when using larger pots. Due to its compact size, the lack of wider support can lead to stability problems when using oversized cookware. So, if your backpacking meal plans include cooking massive amounts of food at once, this petite beauty might encounter some challenges. Some users have also reported issues in high-altitude performances, where the stove struggled to stay lit.

Despite its minor drawbacks, the Snow Peak LiteMax Stove continues to win hearts with its blend of performance and portability. It's lightweight, fuel efficient, durable, and user-friendly, standing as a strong recommendation for anyone seeking a high-performing, minimalist backpacking stove.

7.5 /10

Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System

$169.99
Best Backpacking Stove for All-in-One

Based on our research and testing, we think the Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System is a solid choice if you want a backpacking stove that's really well suited to All-in-One.

Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
6
Time to Boil
9
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Compact design making it easy to pack
  • Fast boil time
  • Durable construction for rugged use
  • Regulator allows for better flame control
  • Ideal for gourmet cooking on-the-go

Reasons to Avoid

  • A bit pricey
  • Not the lightest in its class
  • Doesn't perform well in windy conditions
  • Can only accommodate Jetboil accessories and pots

The Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System, an all-in-one outdoor cooking gear, has garnered significant appreciation from camping and backpacking enthusiasts. It's reputed for its compact design, making it a breeze to tuck into your backpack for any outdoor adventure. Moreover, being lightweight at just 14 ounces, it won't add much bulk to your backpack, which is a big plus for backpackers who need to keep their weight load in check.

Fuel efficiency is another notable strength of this stove. It features a regulated heat control that allows for a fine-tuned cooking experience, even in colder temperatures. According to a good number of buyers, even when they had to cook in frosty conditions, the Jetboil MiniMo didn't disappoint with its consistent performance.

One of the product's unique selling points is its simmer control. Users have lauded this feature for providing a perfect balance between hardcore boiling and slow cooking. Whether you want to enjoy a boiled egg or a well-cooked soup in the woods, the Jetboil MiniMo has got you covered. The push-button igniter only adds to the product's convenience.

However, this stove is not without its flaws. Although the all-in-one design is commendable for its convenience, some users have reported that cleaning the pot can be a bit challenging. Crumbs and food pieces often get stuck near the heat exchanger, requiring extra effort for thorough cleaning.

Another issue highlighted by few customers is the lid design. While it's designed to double as a strainer or a measuring cup, replacing it securely on the pot can be tricky for some, especially in windy conditions. This minor design flaw has somewhat annoyed a few campers.

Overall, the Jetboil MiniMo Cooking System has proven to be a reliable, durable, and efficient companion for many outdoor expeditions. From its space-efficient design and weight to its impressive fuel efficiency and simmer control capabilities, it's received mostly positive reviews from users. However, taking into account the cleaning challenges and lid issues, some campers have recommended factoring these in before making a purchase.

7.5 /10

MSR Whisperlite Universal

$199.95
Best Backpacking Stove for Multi-fuel

Based on our research and testing, we think the MSR Whisperlite Universal is a solid choice if you want a backpacking stove that's really well suited to Multi-fuel.

MSR Whisperlite Universal Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
8
Simmering
6
Time to Boil
9
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Versatile fuel compatibility
  • Stable and durable structure
  • Great heat output and boil time
  • Easy to use and reliable ignition

Reasons to Avoid

  • Could be a bit lighter
  • Packing size could be smaller
  • Slightly complex to assemble

Let's face it, when going on a backpacking trip, having a reliable stove is just as crucial as having a good tent or an adequate sleeping bag. That's where the MSR Whisperlite Universal shines brightly. Known for its multi-fuel adaptability, this thing doesn't just rely on one specific type to function; propane, kerosene, white gas—name it, it burns it. This gives you freedom to choose depending on what's available to you.

When it comes to the setup, most people find it a tad complicated upon first glance. But, after going through the user guide and giving it a couple of tries, most agree that it becomes second nature. The packability of the stove is another feature worth mentioning; disassembling and storing it inside its tiny stuff sack is easy peasy, adding minimal weight to your backpack.

Performance-wise, it holds up impressively well in both calm and windy conditions, with a windscreen included to amp up its efficiency. It has a consistent flame, which is great for cooking meals, and it cranks up a decent amount of heat, making those cold outdoor nights bearable.

However, some users pointed out a few downsides. Although it's compact, altitude and temperature do affect its performance so you might want to take that into consideration. Also, it requires frequent maintenance—the white gas, in particular, needs regular cleaning since it often leaves soot in the burner.

So, how fast can it boil water? Well, in most real-world conditions, a liter of water takes around 3.5 minutes which, for the size of the stove, is impressive. Of course, the boil time can vary based on the type of fuel and environmental conditions.

When you crunch the numbers, it might not be the cheapest option in the market. But, the solid build, adaptability, and efficient performance earn lots of nods from seasoned backpackers. Think of it as an investment for countless camping trips to come.

7.5 /10

BioLite CampStove 2

Best Backpacking Stove for Wood Burning

Based on our research and testing, we think the BioLite CampStove 2 is a solid choice if you want a backpacking stove that's really well suited to Wood Burning.

BioLite CampStove 2 Backpacking Stove
Ease of Use
9
Simmering
6
Time to Boil
8
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Eco-friendly option
  • Possibility to charge devices
  • Impressive heat output
  • Affordable without compromising on quality

Reasons to Avoid

  • Bit heavier for those counting ounces
  • Dependent on available dry wood
  • Charging output can be inconsistent

The BioLite CampStove 2 is a clever bit of kit that aims to keep your gadgets charged and your stomach full on your next wilderness adventure. It uses the heat of the fire to generate electricity, allowing you to charge your devices off-grid. Even more exciting is that it's a wood-burning stove, meaning you don't need to carry fuel, just pick up some sticks from around your campsite.

Several buyers online have expressed their satisfaction with this two-in-one unit. According to them, the BioLite CampStove 2 boils water reasonably quickly, approximately 4.5 minutes to boil 1 litre of water, which is quite decent for a such a compact unit. The stove is fairly lightweight (around 2 lbs) and packs down small enough that it won't take up too much room in your pack.

Users appreciate that you can charge your devices while you cook, though, some point out that the charging speed depends on how hot your fire is. Generally, it's agreed that this isn't going to replace your wall charger, but it will give you enough juice to make an emergency call or keep your GPS running.

On the downside, a few folks have noted that keeping the fire going can be a little bit of a task as the stove requires near constant attention. They found that the fuel chamber is quite small and needs to be refilled every 20-30 minutes. And, you need dry twigs or wood for a consistent fire, which can be challenging in a damp environment.

While it's a bit more hands-on than your typical gas stove, many users seem to enjoy the experience. According to reviewers, there's a sort of satisfaction in using fallen branches to cook your meals and power your devices, bringing you closer to nature, all while reducing your carbon footprint.

No prices found. Check back later!

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