Best Multi-Fuel Stoves
To help you out, we’ve put together a set of detailed reviews of the best multi-fuel stoves on the market today. Read on to find the best stove for your needs.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
In case the name of the product was not obvious enough, the main advantage of multi-fuel stoves is their ability to burn more than one fuel source. Now, from stove to stove the types of fuel that it can use will vary. In fact, some will possess the capability of burning several types of fuel, while others maybe two or three. At their core, they all provide you with this benefit. However, it is up to you to decide the types of fuel sources that benefit you the most. This can either be because you currently own the fuel source or because it has advantages that you prefer.
Let’s take two types of common fuel sources for example. Firstly, white gasoline. Despite what you may think, white gasoline is not unleaded gasoline. As opposed to a canister stove, using white gasoline ensures that your stove will burn exceptionally hot. In addition, the BTUs it will crank out will be enhanced. Then, we can look at kerosene. One key advantage of this fuel is its safety due to it not producing many fumes. On the flipside, these same fuel sources have their disadvantages; so, it really is personal preference.
As was previously mentioned, multi-fuel stoves are also known for their exceptional portability. So much so that when you need a stove for your backpacking or camping adventure, these can fit the bill. You may have never imagined this to be possible but alas, multi-fuel stoves can provide just that. They accomplish this in two key areas with the first one being their compact nature.
Most of the time, these types of stoves will be designed with collapsible legs and portions that can be folded for storage. However, the total weight is also a reason why they are, generally speaking, portable. The weight of multi-fuel stoves is generally kept around a pound and if you think about adding that little weight in your backpack, it should be more than feasible.
But, as portable as they are, you also need to keep in mind that this is not addressing the fuel source/sources that you tag along. The stove itself is one thing entirely, but the type of fuel you bring along is another and can add a ton of weight.
Ease of Use
The above two criteria are two of the reasons why multi-fuel stoves are convenient, to begin with. Yet, these stoves typically offer much more convenience than just their portability and multiple fuel sources. Take MSR for example and their Shaker Jet technology. Literally, to clean and maintain their stoves with this technology all you need to do is shake the stove; it is as simple as that. Or, ask yourself if the manufacturer includes a windscreen? While this is not a mandatory piece of equipment, it is very beneficial. A windscreen will greatly enhance the fuel efficiency of your stove and as such, you will save more money in the long run.
However, another huge point of emphasis for multi-fuel stoves is their simplicity. These devices were never meant to be loaded with advanced technology and complexity, but you can still look for specific design features. For example, the priming process to be either eliminated or made to be significantly easier would benefit you. In addition, it will also prove to be beneficial for you if the overall process of getting the stove to light is simple in any weather condition.
In this sense, heat and power are referring to the same aspect. At the end of the day, you need to ask yourself one question before deciding what multi-fuel stove you want to buy: what are you planning on using a multi-fuel stove for and how much heat do you need?
Okay, that was two questions but they run together. The reason why these questions are vital is you may need to cater the stove based on your answers. But, another question for an average consumer is how do you determine the heat output of a stove? By addressing the BTUs.
While it does depend on the fuel source that you use, manufacturers should provide you with the max BTUs of heat that their stove can dish out. In this guide, the highest output was around 10,000 to 10,500 BTUs. Of course, this may just be a number for you. To make it easier, you can also look at the rating of how long it would take the stove to boil one liter of water. This may give you a better representation of the heat output.
Top Ten Multi-Fuel Stoves
1. Snow Peak LiteMax
For those looking for an extra-lightweight option, the Snow Peak LiteMax is the best option. At only 1.9 oz, it's by far the lightest on our list and will help get you out the door without any additional weight.Read more
Despite some design issues, Trangia got it right in regards to the fuel sources. Their stove can be powered by gasoline, white gasoline, kerosene, diesel, and butane cartridge fuel.
Like we've said above, this is the lightest option we have on our list. But that also means it's pretty minimal. The screw on design is made with high-end materials to help you keep your large pot balanced.
With a great adjustable flame, and support arms that offer a wide base, the LiteMax is a great option for convenience and versatility.
At an impressive BTU of 10,500, this stove can rival any other multi-fuel stove of its kind when it comes to raw power.
Clearly, the most noteworthy aspect of this design is how such a lightweight product could be built so strong.
This deserves a spot on our list for a reason. Being so lightweight, while sturdy and versatile, makes the LiteMax a real contender on our list and one that you shouldn't overlook for your next outdoor adventure.
2. Jetboil MiniMo
The Jetboil MiniMo is another great option, coming by way of Jetboil who continue to show how great their stoves are. This upgraded model comes with a great temperature regulator and cold weather performance. It's a great option for a multi-fuel stove for your next backpacking trip.Read more
Now, this is less lenient on its fuel sources. With a kerosene generator, which is included with your purchase, you can utilize kerosene. But, without it, you are limited to either Coleman fuel or unleaded gasoline.
At 14.6 ounces, this is one of the lightest multi-fuel stoves on our list. As a whole, this is a great reason to love this stove..
As no priming is required on the user’s end, turning on the stove is an easy process. The Jetboil MiniMo has a built-in piezo igniter that adds to its convenience and start-up process
At its peak, you could get 10,000 BTUs of power out of the Jetboil MiniMo Stove. However, this will not always be the output so be aware of that.
The legs, which provide excellent stability, and the burner bowl to ensure the flame is protected against the wind, are not issues. However, the few plastic portions of this construction can be as over time, they could succumb to melting.
Could the world have done without the plastic in this stove? Yes, but besides that, this design is one for the ages and amongst the elite.
3. Coleman Sportster II
MSR is not the only company that has designed more than one exceptional multi-fuel stove, as Coleman has as well. Their Sportster II model is a bit limited in terms of its fuel sources but loaded with cooking power.Read more
Much like with their other multi-fuel stove, Coleman’s Sportster II is a bit limited when it comes to its fuel sources. If you do not want to buy Coleman Liquid Fuel, then you can opt for regular unleaded gasoline.
This stove is suitable for backpacking adventures, with a condensable surface making it an easy pack.
As one user noted, this stove can be a minor pain to start and get lit. This is enhanced in the cold weather as priming may be necessary.
If this list was all about pure power, this could have cracked the top three. With 10,000 BTUs of power, this will boil water about as quickly as any other multi-fuel tank on the market.
When the wind starts howling outdoors, this stove should not be affected by it. Because of its wind baffles, the system prevents the wind from blowing the burner out.
The Sportster II Stove brings along with it some limitations. Most noteworthy is the lack of variety in terms of fuel sources, with only two options available. Although, this stove does pack a powerful punch in times where you need heat the most.
4. Jotboil Flash
The Jetboil Flash stove is one of our top choices for good reason. It has simple set up, fast boil time, and enough space in the pot to store the burner and even a small fuel canister. Because the price is mid-range, and the product so solid, this is a no-brainer pick up.Read more
Within mere seconds, the pot supports and the legs can be folded and unfolded. As such, this ensures that less space is taken up on your trips.
To practically guarantee an easy ignition every single time, there is an ignition hole on the cup. Past this, the assembly process is quite simple and not much of a hassle.
On one end, with white gasoline, this can output an impressive BTU output of 9600. However, this drops down when using canister gas (all the way to 7400 BTUs).
There is a built-in igniter and heat indicator on the outside for easy use as well as an insulated cozy. The MiniMo has great heat control and simmers better than other options on our list. This is great when you want to do more than boil water and actually want to cook meals that require different temperature.
When it comes down to it, there is not much that you can grip at here. Sure, some may want a stove with a bit more power or one with further fuel sources but for others, this will more than suffice.
5. MSR XGK EX
The XGK EX Stove from MSR follows up their last stove and it is nearly just as impressive. This is thanks to its Fiberfax priming pad for ease of lighting and priming, retractable legs, and a more flexible fuel line and larger pot support.Read more
MSR did not hold back on the fuel sources that can be used in their XGK EX Stove, that is for certain. The types of fuel you can use include auto fuel, aviation gas, naphtha, diesel, low-grade kerosene, white gas, and Stoddard solvent.
Besides the fact that MSR includes a customized sack with your purchase, their fuel line also allows the stove to safely fit inside their 1.5-liter MSR pot.
The aforementioned Shaker Jet technology is also integrated into the XGK EX Stove. In addition to this, the Fiberfax priming pad ensures that both priming and lighting this stove are quick and painless.
As a good example of what this stove can output, in terms of its heat, using kerosene fuel, you could boil a liter of water in just less than three minutes.
Due to the design of the retractable legs and the pot supports, the stability of this stove is remarkable. But, because of the large windscreen, this can handle cookware up to 10 inches in diameter.
With all the convenient features and the wide range of fuel sources to boot, this is truly a fantastic option. It just goes to show how efficient MSR is at making these types of stoves.
6. MSR Reactor 1.7
When the discussion of the best multi-fuel stoves gets brought up, it is not complete until someone mentions the MSR Reactor. MSR is a solid company that makes many great stove options. The Reactor definitely deserves a top spot on this list.Read more
Everyone is sure to find a fuel source that suits their needs with options of white gas, kerosene, diesel, jet fuel and even arctic fuel.
Some users have griped about the weight of this machine and often say it's overkill for a standard backpacking trip. But, if you can justify the weight, the Reactor is an amazing option to boil water quickly with minimal fuel waste.
This is easy to start in good and poor weather conditions. The burner is one of the best on our list for poor weather conditions which is why, despite the weight, we love this and it sits high on our list.
With a maximum heat output of 9725 BTUs, this stacks up well against the rest of the competition.
The all-weather performance has already been addressed but what is also impressive about the construction is the stability. Even with larger pots on top, the stability will never be compromised.
It is hard to argue against a stove that so adequately combines power and performance. Simply put, if you are in the market for a multi-fuel stove this is one of the premier options.