Just because winter is coming doesn’t mean the camping fun needs to slow down. Whether you’re off for some winter hunting, ice fishing, or an arctic expedition, you’ll likely want to take along a tent stove. It’s useful for cooking, keeping warm, drying out your clothes and gear, and a great deal more.
So, if you’re going camping anywhere with subzero days or nights, we strongly suggest taking a stove with you.
Lucky for you, we have created this list of the best tent stoves currently available to help you narrow down the options into those that mean the most to you. There’s also a buying guide for some great advice on tent stoves.
So, let’s go through them and find the perfect Tent Stove for you…
- Top 7 Best Tent Stoves For The Budget 2020 Reviews
- Best Tent Stoves Buying Guide
- So, What Are The Best Tent Stoves?
Top 7 Best Tent Stoves For The Budget 2020 Reviews
1 Guide Gear Outdoor Wood Stove
While some options on this list would be good for those on a multi-day trek, others are meant more as a home base stove. The outdoor wood stove from Guide Gear is definitely more of the latter.
Weighing 47 lbs. you won’t be trekking with this bad boy in your backpack. However, if you are using a snowmobile, sled, etc., or setting up a base camp, then this may be the perfect tent stove.
Constructed of a 2mm galvanized steel fire box with a cast iron door and accompanied by five interlocking stove-pipes for up to almost 6-1/2 feet of chimney, this is a stove that looks like it belongs in a small cabin.
The front-hinged door has an adjustable air vent, while the top cooking platform of the stove is great for keeping coffee, pots, and pans hot.
We should note that the quality of construction on this tent does leave something to be desired, and you should use this only in a well-ventilated space until you ensure yours is sealed well enough not to leak smoke inside.
- Looks good anywhere.
- Can cook and keep coffee hot directly on the top.
- Comes with heat-resistant black finish coat applied.
- Less expensive than most tent stoves on this list.
- Known to have issues with seals letting the smoke through.
- Not the best welding we’ve seen on wood burning tent stoves.
- Has been known to rust.
2 Winnerwell Fastfold Titanium Stove
Going in completely the opposite direction with this next camping stove is the Fastfold Titanium Ultralight Stove weighing only 4 lbs.
The titanium construction allows for more efficient heat transfer, making this the best folding camp stove we looked at for both keeping a shelter warm and holding coals for extended periods.
The Fastfold design requires no hardware parts you could accidentally lose, and the whole stove folds flat for easy transportation. Measuring 3 inches in diameter and 9-fee long, the chimney pipe is made of a single thin sheet of titanium that rolls lengthwise for use and sideways for compact storage.
Designed for those using teepee and pyramid shelters, or great for ultralight backpackers as you can also remove the lid creating an ultralight firepan for those cooking outside of a tent.
Measuring 15” X 9” X 2” packed, and 15” X 9” X 7” assembled it is a fair bit smaller than some options listed here, so make sure you have smaller pieces of fuel at the ready. That’s not such an issue with a damper in the door and lid for controlling airflow and burn rate, which is another great feature of this small tent stove, but we would still recommend using hardwood for longer burning…
All these fantastic features make this one of the best tent stoves for the best cold weather camping tents.
- Lightest tent stove reviewed.
- Well made, high-quality materials.
- Compacts to a minimal transportation size.
- Considerably more expensive than many tent stoves reviewed.
- Burns through fuel rather quickly.
3 Winnerwell Portable Precision Stainless-Steel Stove
A second option from Winnerwell that is a fair bit less expensive is the Portable Precision Stove, which comes in stainless-steel rather than titanium.
Heavier than the option above, but still lighter than most tenting stoves on this list, this beauty comes in at just 20 lbs. Like with the titanium above, this stainless-steel construction means that you won’t need to worry about rusting. Because you don’t want to have to worry about the bottom falling out with hot coals in it.
With an assembled 15” X 20” X 90” (including the chimney), you’ll have a fair bit more room to load it up with fuel, and the design offers a great deal of space for cooking or hanging things to dry. The four legs fold flat under the stove, while the chimney pipe stows inside the stove body. The side shelves even act as carrying handles for a truly efficient overall design.
There’s even a glass viewing window built into the door for easy fire management and a decorative twisted metal handle. Because part of getting out into nature is about appreciating the small beauties in the world. This makes it a great stove for the best Teepee tents currently available.
- Compact and efficient.
- Quality materials and construction.
- Not ultralight, but still lighter than most options.
- More expensive than some options.
- The stove chimney pipe could be a larger diameter.
4 TMS Portable Military Camping Stove
This stove is designed with a military tent stove in mind, though the quality isn’t what you would expect from the product’s name.
Sitting a fair bit higher than the last two listings, this tent stove will be more comfortable to load and tend than options that rest on shorter (or no) legs. The stove-pipe is four pieces; each almost 17-inches long by 2-3/4-inches in diameter. This allows you to create a higher smokestack for those taller tents, though the chimney would do better if it was a bit larger around.
There are some features about this camping stove that we enjoyed, like the folding top grate that allows for a large flat heating surface for cooking or folds out for drying gloves, socks, etc.… However, many parts (like detachable legs, stove tools, etc.) make this whole setup less than ideal for many people.
This may seem like an odd question being as we are reviewing the best tent stoves, but with numerous reports of the paint burning off in first use, we would recommend that you bring this unit to full heat for an extended period outside. Then apply some properly heat-resistant paint to ensure you get the longevity you expect from the unit.
- Large Stove area at 18” x 10” x 12”.
- Removable side booking tubes for baking potatoes or meat and fish in foil.
- Poor quality control with legs regularly being different lengths.
- Paint coating needs to be burned off prior to use inside.
- Poor airflow due to design issues like its narrow chimney.
5 Colorado Cylinder Timberline Stove
One of the higher quality stoves on our list of the best tent stoves is the Timberline wood stove from Colorado Cylinder. Made in the USA, which is something all too rare these days, this is a larger stove with a few unique features.
The Timberline stove has you covered with a 3-gallon stainless-steel water heater attached to one side, with the cook top extension on the other side. You’ll have plenty of space to cook up whatever is on the foraged or caught today menu.
The stove-pipe comes in a 5 or 6-inch, fitting the standard 5-inch tent stove jack. This means that you’ll have better airflow than that offered by many of the tent stoves listed here.
The threaded legs are removable for transportation and can be tightened or loosened to accommodate uneven flooring. The heavy 10 and 12-gauge steel is reinforced so it will not warp, while the cylindrical shape helps keep distortion caused by heating and cooling to a minimum.
We also really liked that everything packs up into the stove for space-saving during transportation, the water heater faucet is lead-free brass to keep the water potable, and a coal grate is included. With all of this factored in, we think this might be the best wood burning tent stove.
- High-quality materials and construction.
- Has a built-in water heater.
- Better ventilation with 5” chimney.
- Made in the USA.
- On the heavy side at 92 lbs.
- On the more expensive end of this list.
6 Camp Chef Alpine Cylinder Tent Stove
A second cylinder style camp stove on the list is the Alpine Heavy Duty CS14 Cabin Stove by Camp Chef. Here we have two fold-out side racks, providing a total top area of up to 24 by 28-inches.
The above-mentioned side racks are crate style so you can hang your wet gloves, sock, or heaven forbid everything if you are caught in bad weather. This extra space makes cooking more enjoyable as well by offering a less conductive area to keep dishes warm while freeing up the center cooktop.
The bottom is protected from getting overheated by a fire grate, something you definitely want in a camping stove. While the 8-inch square door is bigger than many options here and provides easy access to the fire, so you won’t burn yourself keeping the fire stoked.
While it is not included, there are brackets on the side, allowing you to attach a tank of your choosing. We quite like this option as it saves a fair bit of weight for those trips where the water heater won’t be needed but allows for the option if you want to take one into the outdoors with you.
- Heavy-duty tent stove.
- Huge surface area for cooking and drying clothes.
- Optional connects for a water heater tank.
- Heavy enough to limit transportation range.
- Water tank sold separately.
- Even with removable legs, this is a bulkier design for transporting.
7 Colorado Cylinder Uncompahgre Collapsible Pack Stove
There is something genuinely satisfying to a collapsible tent stove. Knowing that you’ll have heat in camp but aren’t sacrificing a great deal of space on the sled or in the truck seems to strike many of us as a great feature.
Weighing a total of 32 lbs., this isn’t the lightest stove on the list, but it is still only about a third of the weight of the heavier ones mentioned above. The Uncompahgre packable stove is also built of 20-gauge black steel coated with 1,200-degree stove paint. So, you’ll be ready to go without having to worry about an outdoor burn off toxic paint prior to use inside the tent.
When packed, the main body of the Uncompahgre measures only 23 X 11 X 2.25-inches, while it provides a 12 X 14 X 11-inch wood fire stove when assembled. The 20-inch long, 4-inch diameter stove pipe comes in five pieces, so you’ll reach the ventilation duct at the top of almost any outdoor shelter.
We will note that the size and weight of this model, keeping this from being a backpacking tent stove, though it should easily fit in a pannier for packing on horseback. Because if you really want to get somewhere wild, four legs are better than two anyway.
- Collapses for easy transportation.
- Durable materials and reliable manufacturer.
- Easy to assemble and use.
- Still too heavy for many expeditions.
- Possibly a touch expensive for what it is.
Best Tent Stoves Buying Guide
That is our list of the best tent stoves, with some main features and sticking points. Now you need to decide which option is the best option for your intended use. To help you with this, we have created a set of questions to consider prior to making a purchase. Because you don’t want to be left heated with yourself for getting too much or too little of a tent stove.
Where Are You Headed?
If you’re planning a hunting, ice fishing, or polar exploration trip that will last an extended period then, it’s worth spending a bit more money on the only piece of equipment that will truly keep your tent warm. You’re also likely to be more interested in features like a drying rack and water tank to keep you comfortable in the wild for longer.
Additionally, if you’re headed outdoors for one of these longer trips during conditions cold enough, you need a proper stove, then you’re likely going to care less about weight size.
Are You Actually Hiking To Your Destination?
If you are, then the size and weight are rather crucial. There’s no point lugging a proper stove over that pass to be warm at night, if it’s going to make the whole day miserable due to its back-breaking weight. Especially as there are cooking stoves that come in at only 4lbs.
What Are You Hoping To Get From The Stove?
If you’re just looking for a place to cook up a meal, many of the above-mentioned camp stoves will be overkill. However, for those looking to go ice fishing or hunting in arctic conditions, you’ll likely want both heat and a place to dry wet clothes. It’s hard to reel in that fish, or pull the trigger on that elk, if your fingers are frozen.
Lastly, Are You Really Using The Stove In The Tent?
Some above stoves would really be better as cabin stoves, or base camp stoves set up for a season rather than something you take with you on short holidays away from the city. If you intend to use the stove for a group on a horse packing adventure, then the larger cooking top stoves will be handy as they also usually can hold more fuel at a time for less maintenance.
However, if you really are using this inside your tent, then you need to pay more attention to proper ventilation and tight seams, so you don’t end up smoking yourself out. You will also likely want to spend a bit more on a higher quality tent stove to ensure that it won’t melt and have one that sits off the ground to not melt your tent floor.
What About Warmth And Oxygen Intake Control?
We should also mention that if you intend to use a stove in your tent, then you will also want to be able to control the amount of heat released by the stove, so you don’t end up overheating yourself. This goes hand-in-hand with the amount of oxygen that you let into the fire, which in turn affects how quickly the fuel burns, because you also don’t want to wake up freezing early in the morning because the coals are no longer putting out heat.
So, What Are The Best Tent Stoves?
If the above list hasn’t answered all of your questions and lead you to the best tent stove for you, then you likely really just need to get out there as soon as possible and quiet that overworked brain.
For those who need additional guidance, we would recommend the…
…due to all the features included and quality provided. Because you really don’t want to worry about anything other than enjoying yourself once you’re out there in the wilderness.