Camping Stove Buying Guide
So, you've got your camping trip planned, you've collected together all your camping equipment from the loft/garage/garden shed and it's time to work out how much of it is going to see you through another 2 weeks on your favourite campsite !
One thing you need to make sure of is that your camping cooking equipment is in working order and man enough for the job. The single burner camping stove you and your mates heated up your baked beans on at Glastonbury might not be suitable now you have a family, or if you're going camping for more than a few days.
There are lots of different cooking options available depending on how much space you've got in your backpack/car, how many people you're cooking for, and how much you want to spend. We'll take a look at a few here......if you make sure you are prepared and have the right camping stove then you can be as happy as the people in this photo whilst cooking your food!
SINGLE BURNER STOVES
Single burner camping stoves are fantastic if you are short on space, happy to cook all your meals in one pan ( for an enormous selection of camping recipes check out the World of Camping Pinterest page here ) or just like to keep things simple. They are also fantastic value for money and can be used with a minimum of fuss as there is no need to lug around a full sized gas bottle as fuel.
The ultra compact Sunncamp Alpine Stove is perfect for backpacking as it's tiny. It runs off the self threading gas cartridges shown in the Alpine Stove photo below. More details about the gas cartridges HERE.
The Outwell Appetizer Stove uses the ubiquitous Butane Gas Cartridges which easily slot in and out of the stove. These will last for up to a couple of hours each ( depending how ferocious you like your flame ) and are extremely good value. Currently only £4.99 for 4 from World of Camping.
You'll be surprised how well you can get by on a single hob. Chuck your whole english brekkie in a big frying pan (maybe do the beans afterwards!), cook up a lovely omelette, a lovely healthy veg filled stir fry, or get a nice big pile of pancakes lined up to cover in your favourite toppings to much on by the campfire.
DOUBLE BURNER STOVES
If cooking on a single hob fills you with horror and you need something a little less basic than a single burner, then there are plenty of other options available. Double Burner Camping Stoves with Grills or Double Burners with Griddles give you loads of options to cook up a gourmet treat.
If you are going camping for a long period and will be cooking for yourselves most days then it's more advisable to go for a double burner type stove that hooks up to a butane bottle as they will last for a very long time. You'll get several weeks worth of cooking from a butane bottle as opposed to perhaps a few days from a cannister.
In order to use a larger camping stove you will need a couple of metres of Gas Hose and a couple of Jubilee Clips in order to connect up to your Propane or Butane gas bottle. Propane is usually found in the larger orange bottles and generally more for domestic and industrial use. Butane is usually in the comparatively smaller blue bottles, making it easier to transport and therefore a more suitable option for campers.
It's also worth noting that Butane is a less toxic gas and can legally be used and stored indoors, as opposed to Propane which must be stored outdoors at all times. For more information on how to properly store gas bottles click here.
Depending on the type of gas bottle you use you will also need to get the appropriate regulator for that particular bottle. Regulators are very inexpensive ( generally in the region of £5-£6 ) and can be found on the World of Camping Website here
This one has to have a section all to itself! Some might say that camping is all about going back to basics and roughing it, others want to take their oven from home! The Kampa Roast Master is the answer for those people. The Roast Master has a double hob and an oven so there's no need to go without your Sunday Roast. To give an idea of size, dimensions are - W 540 x D 310 x H460 mm . Not so popular with backpackers and cyclists for some reason...... for full details on the Kampa Roast Master Click Here
WOOD BURNING STOVES
If you really want to get back to nature and use the fuel of the land (twigs!) then a wood burning stove is for you. The Ezy Stove is small and lightweight and great for camping, picnics, or to take to the beach and all you need to fuel it up is a handful of sticks!
To use it, simply light a small fire inside the combustion chamber, then insert some sticks (the dryer the better) horizontally into the stove.
Within a minute or two the stove is ready for cooking. As the fuel burns, you nudge the sticks in, according to the intensity of heat required.
The stove is a 'rocket stove' design, meaning it uses a clever mix of insulation and air venting to ensure a clean, intense burn.
Primary air is drawn in under the fuel, and secondary air (to burn off the smoke) is drawn in over the fuel. The double-walled stainless steel combustion chamber provides just the right environment for combustion.The stove literally boils smoke out of the wood, then burns it!
Check out the video here to get a glimpse of the Ezy Stove in action
Of course, a perennial favourite cooking method for campers is the good old barbeque. Nothing quite beats the flavour of a good, well cooked, smoke filled ( yes, probably burnt! ) banger or two!
Portable barbeques can range in size from the standard issue Disposable Charcoal BBQ .You can also get portable foldable and tabletop barbeques like the super popular KingCamp Apple Oval BBQ pictured below. World of Camping also have larger Trolley and Tripod Barbeques available. The full range can be browsed on the World of Camping Website HERE. We also have a Blog Post with barbeque hints and tips, click the link to check it out!
There is a vast range of lightweight, portable stoves available. Thought must be given to the amount and the type of cooking that you will use your stove for. Think also if you need to be able to carry the stove in a backpack or what space you will have in the car boot. Stoves can vary from a two-burner stove and grill, complete with side wind protectors and a lid, like the campingaz camping chef to a single ring compact burner, like the Campingaz Bleuet micro stove. The next question you must answer is "what type of fuel will you be using?" and this will be dependent on the type of camping you will be doing. Fuels vary in how hot they burn, how well they work in the cold, how easy they are to light, how safe they are to use and how much they cost. Availability varies too so the places you plan to visit may determine the fuel you wish to use.
Butane/Propane Gas Stoves
These use a butane/propane gas mix in cartridges or, butane or propane in refillable cylinders. Gas is very predictable in its lighting and performance, is safe to use and is very controllable heat source. The cartridges attach directly to the stove and can be pierce-able or reseal-able. Reseal-abl
e cartridges can be removed from the stove when still partly full and packed separately so preventing the stove being accidentally turned on. Stoves using this type of gas are very lightweight but not as stable as the larger stoves requiring cylinders.
These small stoves, like the Campingaz Bleuet micro stove or the Campingaz CV 270 stove, are better suited to use with smaller pans, like the Sunngas 1 person cook set , or the slightly larger Outwell Aluminium camping cook set . Stoves requiring cylinders are attached by means of a regulator and flexible gas hose These stoves are very stable, can take larger pans safely, like the Sunnflair family cook set and often, like the Campingaz camping chef include a grill. Some of these stoves include a lid and side windbreaks and some, like the Sunngas Grill master deluxe are complete with legs. These are ideal for family use. Gas for refillable cylinders are widely available.
However if you plan to camp in France, Camping Gaz cylinders are the only ones available and the suitable regulator and cylinder should be purchased before your holiday. If your trip includes cold weather camping, you should consider swapping to propane gas as this gas freezes at a lower temperature than butane and so will be useable in cold or freezing conditions.
These stoves run on pressurised petroleum in some form. They burn very hot and are very fuel-efficient. Some of these stoves will work with a wide variety of oils including diesel, while others can only use one or two fuels, such as the Coleman Sportser 2 stove which can run on unleaded petrol or coleman fuel.
For efficient performance only the cleanest fuels should be used. There is a range of sizes in these stoves from the small back packers stove to the family size double burners stove, such as the Coleman unleaded 2 burner stove .