When you are backpacking, hiking and camping, a source of heat for boiling water, heat and cooking are truly handy. One such option is a wood-burning stove.
These stoves are lightweight and because they use dry twigs, firewood, pinecones, and even leaves, you don’t necessarily need to carry fuel such as propane canisters.
Still, the best wood burning stove will depend on your cooking aspirations and weight restrictions.
In this guide, we present some of the top-rated wood-burning stoves for outdoor use.
Whether big or small, high-end or budget models, we have them herein for you to consider.
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You will also find a buying guide further down with information on how to choose a good wood burning stove.
That said, let’s dive right in beginning with the in-depth review of our editor’s choice – Solo Stove Campfire 4+ Person Compact Wood Burning Stove.
Top 8 Best Wood Burning Stove
The Solo Stove Campfire is a great addition to any camper or backpacker’s bag as a lightweight stove for up to 4 people.
You don’t need to carry any fuel or worry about finding a place that sells gas as this stove relies on dry twigs, leaves and pine cones that are readily available out there.
This allows you to minimize your pack weight and also means zero operating costs for this stove.
Made from premium grade 304 stainless steel and nichrome wire, and benefiting from Solo’s proprietary design and specialized construction procedures, this stove is built to last for years.
Moreover, it was designed with Solo’s 2-pot and 3-pot set in mind and when coupled with their tripod, it becomes quite a versatile cooking set.
Its double-wall design with special airflow properties makes it super-efficient and with very little smoke during full burning.
The assembled size is 9.25 x 7 inches and it weighs only 2.2lbs. It boils water in as little as 2 minutes.
This award-winning stove is recommended by Backpacker Magazine and remains a firm favorite for Discovery Channel’s Matt Graham.
A must-have for serious campers, backpackers, and survivalists and the best wood burning stove in our opinion.
This überleben Stoker Flatpack Stove is an eco-friendly and portable unit that helps you get rid of purchasing expensive and pollution-causing gas fuel.
The unit only requires biomass fuel such as wood, twigs, moss, dried leaves, sticks or pinecones to produce a fire.
You can also opt to use charcoal, Esbit tablets or wood pellets; the options are endless here, but all of them are cheap and readily available.
The unit weighs just 14.5 oz and its compact 5-panel construction allows it to pack down to about 6 x 6 inches for easy storage.
It also takes very little space in a backpack in its compact state. The stove is made from premium 304 stainless steel for long-lasting reliability.
It does look robust to hold even heavy cast iron pots thanks to un-waxed canvas sleeve and is extremely stable.
The stove takes around 10 minutes to boil two cups of water and it easily cooks and brews foods as well.
Its performance in the windy condition is said to be good and the unit is easy to clean after use.
This nCamp Wood Burning Camping Stove is another portable wood burning stove that uses twigs from the woods for fuel, significantly reducing weight in your backpack and providing an unlimited supply of fuel.
Better still, it can use solid fuel (hexamine) and liquid fuel (diethylene glycol), giving you options for when the weather is unforgiving.
The stove boasts a collapsible combustion chamber that allows it to pack flat and minimize storage space in your pack.
Weighing 33 ounces, this camping stove is also one of the most lightweight you can get.
The construction involves stainless steel and aluminum, highly durable materials, rust- and corrosion-resistant. Its combustion chamber also creates a Venturi effect for improved and quicker heating, while vent holes let out ash and allow increased ventilation for effective burning.
This model is more expensive than many others in this review, but the versatility it offers is hard to beat.
A cheaper option to the nCamp model above is this Lixada Camping Stove Wood Burning Stove.
This simplistic looking and practical wood burner fairs incredibly well against a canister stove as it allows you to use dry grass, twigs, leaves, and pinecones as fuel.
It has a large opening that lets you place these kinds of fuel to burn. This encourages an eco-friendly burn thus minimizing problematic toxic gas emissions.
Designed to be a space saver, this Lixada takes very little space in your backpack and because it weighs only 10.0 ounces, it adds little weight to your pack.
The overall construction is sturdy and rust-proof as it’s made from heavy-duty stainless steel.
This makes it perfect for outdoor use. It can also cope with high heat as well as the weight of pans and pots on it.
For better transportation, Lixada provides a carry bag that can additionally free up space in your backpack too.
Here we have a truly affordable and functional wood-burning stove.
This Ohuhu Camping Stove Stainless Steel Backpacking Stove is constructed from premium rust-resistant stainless steel that’s not only durable but also looks stunning in its shiny finish.
The material is also a great conductor of heat, so it heats up well and helps distribute heat evenly around the pot or pan sitting on top.
The stove is a breeze to set up as each component fits flawlessly into each other to create an incredibly stable stand for cooking pots.
For extra reinforcement, this camping stove comes with 3 arms pot support that ensures the pot stays in place for as long as you cook.
It boils 0.75 liters of water in under 8 minutes and that’s perfect for three campers.
Coming in at 14.2 ounces, the Ohuhu falls is without a doubt lightweight and travel-friendly.
There’s even little maintenance required for this stove, but it makes sense cleaning residue and ash that tends to build up after a couple of uses.
This model is a steal at its price and no wonder it bears the tag “Amazon’s Choice”.
The CANWAY Camping Stove boasts an outstanding thermal efficiency in which the stove consistently burns for 20 minutes with wood-chips and firewood.
The stove is compact and lightweight with dimensions of 5.5 x 5.5 x 3.38 inches making it easy to fit into your backpack.
It is made from high-quality stainless steel and features a 3-arm support system that provides a steady platform for pots.
Better, the stove is designed to help distribute even heat. The size is ideal for cooking enough meals for two people at a time.
Also included is a grill top BBQ for smoking meat at the campsite and a carry bag to help with storage.
It only requires twigs, branches, woods or even dry leaves as fuel, making it an eco-friendly gear.
Last but not least, CANWAY backs this product with a 2-year warranty from the date of purchase, so you can buy with confidence.
Instead of taking a typical cylindrical or square shape like most portable wood-burning stoves, this Unigear Wood Burning Camp Stove has the style of a BBQ.
Furthermore, it folds like a textbook for compact storage and transportation.
Its unique shape makes it very stable and capable of holding large pots up to 20 pounds heavy.
As it is made from high-grade stainless steel, this stove is durable and able to withstand very hot temperatures.
The product is also resistant to scratches, rust, dents, and impacts.
For fuel, you can use anything from wood, pinecones, and solid alcohol.
It’s additionally outfitted with a removable ash plate that makes it a doddle to clean out any residue.
When it comes to assembly, the stove gets ready to use in three simple steps and can even be used upside down. Everything in this stove makes cooking outdoors fun and quick.
Speak of innovative design, energy efficiency, and durability, and very few camping stoves fit the description better than the EcoZoom Versa Camping Stove.
It combines cast iron upper and stainless steel handles with silicone grips that make the handles cool to the touch even while the stove is burning.
The sides have an insulated structure that locks in heat while enhancing optimal distribution for effective cooking.
It also comes with three universal prongs that can hold stainless steel pots and cast iron cookware, both rounded and flat-bottomed.
Integral to the design of this stove is the stick support, which allows you to continuously feed wood or biomass into the stove.
You will also find it easy to control heat not by a digital temperature control knob, but by closing and opening the damper door accordingly.
Opening this door lets in more air to fire the chamber while closing it cuts oxygen intake for a weak fire.
With its powerful 23,000 BTUs, this stove is suitable for a variety of applications including car camping, RV camping, backyard cooking, and emergency situations.
What to consider before buying a wood-burning stove
Obviously, not any wood burning stove is good for you. Below are a few factors to pay attention to when shopping.
First of all, check the dimensions of the stove. It should be easy to fit into your backpack or your car and still leave space for other stuff.
It’s also important that fits well in your tent. Along the same lines, consider the weight of the stove, especially if you want a portable unit for backpacking.
Something like the CANWAY Camping Stove is an excellent choice in this regard.
Stability and pot support
One characteristic of the best wood burning stove is stability. The unit should be sturdy enough to hold pots and pans of almost any size and weight.
A good example is the Unigear Wood Burning Camp Stove, which can sustain up to 20-pound weight.
Support comes in the form of prongs or arms with some pots having 3 and others 4, which helps keep the cookware in position during a cooking session.
In terms of performance, check whether the stove has enough air holes because it needs a steady flow of oxygen for the fire to keep burning.
A sizeable fuel door is another thing that will allow you to load firewood to the heating chamber easily.
A notable mention here is the EcoZoom Versa Camping Stove, which has a damper door to help you regulate heat production inside the heating chamber.
You can produce more heat by opening it fully or minimize heat by closing its damper door.
At least every stove has a mention of how long it takes to boil a specific amount of water.
This factor is important for backpackers who need to get up early and get going in minutes.
If time is really of the essence to you, the Solo Stove Campfire is your perfect companion as it brings water to a boil within two minutes.
However, note that it will take some minutes to get your wood-burning stove blazing before you can put anything on top.
For this reason, wood burners are slower to cook than gas stoves, for example. Most wood-burning stoves average 5 minutes to boil a cup of water.
If you’re heading out as a group, think about just how many people the stove can serve in one go.
For example, can you boil enough water in one attempt for four people? Again, the Solo Stove Campfire takes it in this respect.
You need to select a decent-sized stove for group camping to avoid cooking multiple times to serve everyone.
There exist hundreds of wood-burning stoves on the market, but the best wood burning stove depends on your needs.
Some people don’t mind transporting the stove in their car or RV, while others want something to throw into a backpack.
Maybe you plan to use the stove for family picnics or perhaps you plan to find a sweet spot in the woods and won’t be moving around at all.
If you carefully analyze such factors, you will find it easy to buy a good wood burning stove. Cheers!