Mit einem Outdoor-Messer wird eine Wurst auf einem Holzbrett geschnitten, nebenan liegt eine kleine Campingpfanne mit einer braungebratenen Rösti.


Gas, benzine or Esbit: comparing camping stoves

  • #Cooking
Autorenbild Remo
Sales consultants and training courses
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Cooking al fresco really ramps your adventure up a notch. Depending on your specific activity, though, either a multi-fuel stove or a gas-fired stove could be the better choice. Sales advisor Remo explains how each stove type works and what they’re best for.

Camping stoves differ in terms of maintenance, weight or even usage. Here’s an overview of the key stove types and their features.

Want to find out about a particular type of stove? Go straight to:

Gas stoves

Gas stoves

Three gas stoves models

Models where the cartridge screws directly into the stove are the lightest and most compact. However, they can quickly become unsteady when cooking with large pans.

Conversely, free-standing models have the cartridge screwed into a tube which, in turn, is connected to the stove. The stove itself sits in a frame with a broad standing surface and contact area, which ensures it doesn’t fall over easily.

With system stoves, you can store your screw-in stove, cartridge and pan inside each other to save space. These stove are ultra-efficient and can be hung up, so you don’t need to find flat ground to use them on. That’s why they’re a popular choice for Alpine expeditions or big wall climbing when you’ll be spending the night in a portaledge. The downside: the pan is scarcely bigger than a large cup. You won’t be able to prepare much more than a packet of soup or water for making tea or dried food in it.

People often forget that you need to carry the empty gas cartridges with you for the whole trip if you’re using a gas stove. As they’re fairly bulky, they can take up a substantial amount of space in your backpack during your entire adventure: this shouldn’t be underestimated.

Gas stove tips

If a screw-in gas stove falls over, this can spark a jet of flame – which can be really dangerous when cooking in your tent’s apsis or with children. However, there are models with an integrated pressure regulator (like Soto’s Windmaster), which continue to burn as normal if they tip over. The regulator also ensures that as much of the contents of the cartridge are used as possible.

Benzine and multi-fuel stoves

Benzine and multi-fuel stoves

Tips for your benzine stove

Proper pre-heating is half the battle! If you carefully, calmly prepare your benzine stove, this reduces the amount of maintenance you’ll need to do and minimises sooty jets of flame.

Benzine and multi-fuel stoves

Special types

Special types

Let’s get one thing straight, to start with: the term ‘special types’ refers to stoves that aren’t operated with gas or benzine. They’re not ‘special’ in and of themselves, nor are they any worse than their performance-driven cousins. Instead, they have unique characteristics of their own.

Trangia, Esbit and hobo stoves

Open fire

Open fire

What could be nicer than sitting around a campfire in the evening, talking about the day’s events and cooking your dinner in a big pan over the flames? While cooking on an open fire may be cosy, you have to be ready to improvise: you need a suitable space for making a fire, and fires need to be permitted in the first place! In summer, in particular, you should gen up on the risk of forest fires.

You need a grill rack or tripod and special (comparatively heavy) pots and pans to cook on an open fire. Ideally, you’d use enamel pots, which are very heat-resistant and easy to clean, or traditional campfire pans with a fireproof outer coating. Alternatively, you can use cast-iron pans (such as Petromax pans). However, they’re pretty weighty: unless you’re heading off on a canoe tour without any walking sections or a bus trip, they’re only suitable for cook-outs where you won’t be going anywhere.

Tips for cooking over a fire

Make your fire on a spot that’s as sheltered from the wind as possible. This is safer, and also ensures your pan heats up nice and evenly.

  • #Cooking

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