The Ultimate Propane Camping Stove Guide
If you’re heading out into the wilderness for a weekend retreat, you’ll need a propane camping stove to create those rustic eats! These stoves come in all shapes and sizes – balancing functionality and portability.
Today we’re sharing the best stoves that suit your unique camping needs.
From the first camping stoves in 1919 to the designs of today, not much has changed. We’ll feature a few clever stoves that try to re-create the wheel, but the classic single burner still remains a camping cornerstone in 2020.
Buying a Used Propane Camping Stove
Are you open to buying a used stove?! We like the idea. In fact, propane camping stoves are very easy to find on a used market place. We like searching on Facebook, because it’s easy to creep on the seller 😂 But, LetGo and Craigslist work just fine too!
Keep in mind, a simple camping stove is relatively inexpensive. If you take the time to search a used-marketplace, you should be getting a sweet deal. That process will take time…and like they say, time is for camping!
As you can see in the picture below, $15-$20 is a good used camping stove price.
The Classic: Coleman Camping Stove
- Price: $40-$80
- Burners: Two
- Weight: 11 lbs.
Why You’ll Love It: This is the classic camping stove. Coleman camping gear has been a staple in America for the last 50 years. This stove will serve up a healthy dose of nostalgia and cook your bacon!
This unit features wind blockers on each side, protecting the flame and keeping cooking temps consistent. The burners provide a total of 20,000 BTUs of cooking power.
Each of the burners can be set at their own temperature. This will give you a little extra cooking control. However, the burners are pretty close together – heat variation between burners will be minimal.
Here’s the bad Amazon review: K says, “I wanted to love this, as I’ve owned one before, but I have one complaint, which is why I gave it three stars. If that issue was fixed, this would be a five star review. That problem is the control valves. There’s very little room for fine adjustment of the flame…it’s either off, or nearly on full blast, with very little space to fine-tune the flame.”
The Outdoor Chef: GYMAX Outdoor Stove
- Price: around $100
- Burners: Two
- Weight: 26 lbs.
Why You’ll Love It: The standalone set up is perfect for the outdoor chef who needs more cooking space. The GYMAX has long legs that elevates your burners to a more natural height.
This stove has serious cooking power – it can produce 150,000 BTUs, boiling water with ease. The unit breaks down quickly, but also has a lot of structural integrity when set up.
Durability is a key feature of the GYMAX. It uses cast iron and powder-coated metal for an extended life.
Here’s the GOOD Amazon review (no bad reviews): Mom says, “This is a super sturdy stove. The burners on it are a lot bigger than i expected and this will be awesome for doing my camping cooking as well as big canning pots.”
The Minimalist: Texsport Propane Camping Stove
- Price: $20-$30
- Burners: One
- Weight: 2 lbs.
Why You’ll Love It: This little camping stove is super compact. Weighing only two pounds, you can carry it around without knowing its there! We call this minimal stove a “perfect tent camping cooktop.”
The stove is made of heavy gauge steal and baked enamel. The main knob will turn it on and off, as well as adjust the flame.
If you’re the minimal camping-type, give this stove a try!
Here’s the bad Amazon review: J. says, “This took a very long time to boil some water. The output heat is very low compared to other stoves I have owned. Additionally, the build quality and the design have serious problems. The stem which feeds fuel from the bottle is bent in such a way that neither the bottle nor the stove will sit level! The heavier fuel bottle invariably causes the stove to tip. A flexible fuel line would be vastly superior.”
The Modern Camper: Jetboil Genesis
- Price: around $350
- Burners: Two
- Weight: 11.6 lbs.
Why You’ll Love It: Modern & functional. This two burner stove packs down pretty small…but the best part, the unit includes a pot and pan. All of it fits together like nesting dolls. This propane camping stove is perfect for the high-tech-gadget lover!
A windscreen is included to protect the flame (which pumps out 10,000 BTUs). Campers who use the Jetboil rave about the design…the quality, however, has been up for debate.
Here’s the bad Amazon review: L. says, “When we first received this unit, we loved it. It cooks evenly, heats soups quickly and stores conveniently. However after just a few uses, the frying pan dented very easily and the inside coated immediately started peeling rendering the pan completely useless”
Built to Last: Camp Chef Mountaineer
- Price: around $200
- Burners: Two
- Weight: 7.5 lbs.
Why You’ll Love It: This dual-burner stove is built to last. It has the classic Coleman Stove aesthetic, with the construction quality of a residential stove.
The Camp Chef uses a complete welded aluminum structure with easy hose connections. Producing a whopping BTUs, you’ll have no problem boiling a pot of water.
This is our favorite propane camping stove of the bunch!
Here’s the bad Amazon review: Russel says, “It’s ridiculous. I cut myself during the first use. I’m going to have to spend an hour deburring the thing. For a $200 stove, this is just unacceptable. Don’t buy this unless you’re OK sinking some labor into correcting the problem.”
The Best Free Camping in the Entire USA
We love camping across this amazing country. And, we really love it when its free. Here’s our list of the 20 Best Free Campsites in the USA.
If you haven’t tried free camping before, also known as boondocking, take a look at our beginners guide to boondocking filled with everything you need to know to get started.
Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers that love to score the best site! Simply enter your email below.