The 5 Best Single Burner Propane Camp Stoves for 2023

best single burner propane camp stoves

Cooking while camping is made easy with a portable single burner propane camp stove. These stoves provide the convenience of cooking outdoors without the hassle of building a campfire. With just the push of a button, you can boil water for coffee or cook up eggs and bacon for breakfast.

In this post, we’ll cover the top-rated single burner propane stoves for camping and backpacking. We evaluated over 20 different models based on power, portability, ease of use, durability, adjustability, and key safety features. 

Read on for full reviews of our top picks and tips for choosing the best single burner propane stove for your needs.

What to Look for in a Single Burner Propane Camp Stove?

When shopping for a single burner propane camping stove, there are a few key factors to consider:

1. Power

The power of a camp stove is measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). Most quality single burner stoves will provide around 10,000 BTUs up to 20,000 BTUs of cooking power. The higher the BTUs, the faster the stove will boil water and cook food. 

Go for at least 10,000 BTUs for versatility in cooking light meals. But for quickly boiling water for several people, it’s best to choose a more powerful 15-20,000 BTU burner.

2. Portability

Look at the overall weight and dimensions when factoring in portability. The stove shouldn’t be too bulky or heavy if you need to carry it in a backpack over long distances. Compact, lightweight stoves around 5 pounds or less are best for backpacking. 

While heavier models around 15 pounds are still portable enough for car camping or RV cooking. Also, see if the stove legs fold or detach for easier storage and transport.

3. Ease of Use

Opt for simple, intuitive controls like push button ignition rather than cumbersome matches or manual knobs. Wind guards help block gusts so you can cook in windy conditions. It’s also convenient if the stove has an integrated piezo igniter for matchless ignition with the push of a button.

4. Durability

Sturdy construction from materials like stainless steel and cast iron allow a stove to hold up well for years of camping trips. Check that the individual components like knobs and connectors are also made from durable materials built to last.

5. Adjustability

Some camp stoves offer more adjustability than others when it comes to controlling the intensity of the flame. Choose a stove with a good range of temperature regulation so you can fine tune the heat for simmering or boiling.

6. Safety Features

Propane stoves carry a fire risk, especially if accidentally knocked over. Look for safety features like an auto shut off that turns the gas off if the stove tilts more than a certain number of degrees. This prevents gas from leaking out and catching fire.

Keeping these factors in mind will help you pick the right single burner propane camp stove for your needs. Next, we’ll review our top recommendations.

The Top 5 Single Burner Propane Camp Stoves

Based on power, portability, ease of use, durability, adjustability, and safety ratings, here are the top 5 single burner propane stoves for camping and backpacking:

1. Coleman Camp Propane Stove

The Coleman Camp Propane Stove tops our list for its combination of power and portability. With a beefy 20,000 BTUs of cooking power, this rugged stove boils water quickly and can handle pots and pans up to 12 inches wide.

Despite its power, the Coleman still travels well thanks to its compact design and foldable legs. It weighs a reasonable 14.5 pounds and includes a durable carrying handle. WindBlock side panels help shield the flame on breezy days.

Cooking is a breeze with push button ignition. Just press the Instastart igniter and you’re ready to cook within seconds. With two independently adjustable 20,000 BTU burners, you can fine tune the heat whether boiling water or simmering sauces.

With excellent power and portability, the Coleman is a versatile pick for car camping, hunting, fishing, and RV trips.

2. Stansport Outfitter Series Propane Stove

The Stansport Outfitter Series stove is an ultra lightweight and portable pick at just 4.5 pounds. The compact design takes up minimal space in a pack yet still provides 10,000 BTUs of cooking power.

An enamel-coated cast iron burner offers excellent heating efficiency and is rust resistant. The push button Piezo igniter means no matches required to start the stove. Everything packs down small, with detachable legs for easy storage.

While not as powerful as the Coleman, the Stansport is a great minimalist choice for solo backpacking trips. It’s one of the lightest and most portable propane stoves out there.

3. Camp Chef Explorer Double Burner Stove

This two burner stove from Camp Chef is great for cooking full camp meals for the whole family. Each burner puts out an impressive 20,000 BTUs for rapid boiling and frying.

Precise temperature controls allow you to adjust the heat down for simmering soups or stews. The burners have a wide range from 5,500 to 20,000 BTUs. The stove includes a trio of wind barriers to circle the flame for wind protection.

Safety features include a tip-over auto shut off that turns the gas off if the stove tilts or gets knocked over. The Explorer also has a matchless igniter for easy push button starting.

While heavier than other picks at over 26 pounds, the included carry bag with shoulder strap makes transportation manageable. Overall, it’s one of the top-rated double burner camp stoves.

4. GasOne GS-3400P Single Burner Propane Stove

The GasOne GS-3400P offers a nice balance of portability and power. Weighing just 5 pounds, it won’t weigh down your pack on backpacking excursions. The briefcase-style carrying handle also makes transportation easy.

For its compact size, it still packs quite a punch with 10,000 BTUs of cooking power. The burner is crafted from heavy-duty stainless steel for longevity. Electronic push button ignition means no need for matches to light.

Wind resistance panels help block gusts of wind from disrupting the cooking process. With straightforward controls and matchless ignition, the GasOne is one of the most user-friendly lightweight stoves.

5. G-stove Single Burner Propane Stove

Last up is the G-Stove, known for its durable stainless steel construction. The stove exterior, burner head, control panel and legs are all made from high grade stainless steel for rustproof longevity.

The integrated X-style foldable legs provide sturdiness on uneven ground. For power, you get 10,200 BTUs of cooking performance. The control knob makes it easy to tune the heat up or down.

Other highlights include the auto shut off feature that turns the gas off if the stove tilts over. Electronic ignition also eliminates the need for matches.

While not as lightweight as some models, the G-Stove makes up for it with uncompromising sturdiness. It’s built to last for years of camping and outdoor cooking.

Key Factors to Consider When Buying a Single Burner Propane Camp Stove

  • Power (BTUs) – Aim for at least 10,000 BTUs for boiling water and basic cooking needs. Go higher if you want more heating power.
  • Portability – Look at the overall weight and size. Can it fit in your pack? Are the legs detachable?
  • Ease of Use – Push button ignition is convenient. Look for intuitive controls.
  • Durability – See if the stove is made from quality materials like stainless steel.
  • Adjustability – Check that the stove offers good flame control for simmering.
  • Safety – Auto shut off ability if tipped over prevents gas leaks.

Consider what features matter most for your camping style. Backpackers need an ultralight stove under 5 pounds. Car campers may want more power with 15-20,000 BTUs and don’t have to worry as much about compact portability.

Also determine if you want a stove that only boils water or if you’ll be cooking full camp meals. The latter requires more burner power and flame adjustability.

How to Use Your Single Burner Propane Camp Stove?

Using a single burner propane stove is easy once you understand the basic steps:

  1. Place the stove on a flat, stable outdoor surface away from debris and combustibles.
  2. Attach the propane cylinder by screwing it tightly into the regulator opening. Make sure the control knob is turned off.
  3. Open the cylinder valve by turning the cylinder handle counterclockwise. Listen for the hiss that indicates gas flow.
  4. Light the burner by pressing the igniter button if your stove has push button ignition. Or light with a match/lighter.
  5. Adjust the flame to your desired level by turning the control knob.
  6. Add cookware like a pot or pan. Make sure it’s placed centrally over the burner.
  7. Monitor cooking and adjust heat as needed. Use potholders as the stove surfaces get hot.
  8. Turn off the stove when finished by closing the propane cylinder valve and turning the control knob off.

With a few uses, operating a propane camp stove will become second nature. Just take care when handling propane and follow basic safety tips.

Safety Tips for Cooking with Propane Camp Stoves

While propane stoves are generally safe when used properly, it’s important to keep these safety precautions in mind:

  • Always operate the stove on a flat, even outdoor surface away from debris. Propane can pools in low spots.
  • Keep the stove attended while lit. Don’t leave cooking food unattended.
  • Keep the propane cylinder upright. Don’t tip or turn it on its side.
  • Check that connections between the stove and cylinder are tight and secure.
  • Don’t overfill small propane canisters beyond 80% capacity. This can cause dangerous pressure issues.
  • Store extra propane cylinders outdoors in an upright position away from heat and enclosed spaces.
  • Don’t use propane stoves in enclosed spaces like tents or campers. Only use outdoors.
  • Keep children and pets away from the stove at a safe distance.
  • Have a fire extinguisher on hand in case of emergencies.
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing that could catch fire. Tie back long hair.

Following basic safety precautions will keep you secure when cooking with propane. As long as you use the stove responsibly outdoors, you can enjoy the convenience of camp cooking with less hassle than a campfire.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does a one pound propane cylinder last on a camp stove?

One 16.4 ounce disposable propane cylinder typically provides around 2-3 hours of stove run time depending on flame size. Cylinder output is affected by the ambient temperature. Colder weather reduces operational time.

What PSI do camp stove propane cylinders need to be?

Propane cylinders for camp stoves are pressurized to around 115-125 psi when full. This provides the proper pressure to feed the gas to the stove burner.

Are camp stove propane canisters refillable?

Small 16 ounce cylinders are not meant to be refilled and are disposable. Larger 20 pound tanks used mainly for RV or trailer cooking can be refilled at propane supply stores. Don’t attempt to refill disposable 1 pound cylinders yourself.

How should you dispose of propane cylinders?

Don’t put propane cylinders in the trash. The best way to dispose of small propane canisters is to take them to a hazardous household waste management facility. Some retailers like camping stores also accept them.

What valve type is best for camp stove propane cylinders?

For portable camp stoves, go with a CYL/POL type threaded valve on your propane canister. This is the typical compatibility


Having the right single burner propane stove makes cooking while camping quick and convenient. Just pick a spot, light up the stove, and start cooking within minutes.

Look for important features like power, portability, and ease of use when choosing the best propane camp stove for your needs. Models with push button ignition, sturdy construction, and auto shut off safety are preferable.

Whichever stove you choose, be sure to follow basic safety protocols like using outdoors only. With responsible use, propane stoves allow you to cook meals anytime, anywhere while enjoying the great outdoors.

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