Best Stove for Van Life: Best Campervan Stove Options

Last update:

Van life comes with its own set of challenges, but one aspect many van dwellers appreciate is the opportunity to prepare their own meals on the go. Having a reliable stove is a great way to save money by not needing to eat out, but also brings greater comfort and convenience, allowing you to feel more at home during your travels. But with so many options available, how do you choose your best stove for van life?

That’s where this article comes in! I spent nearly a year living full-time in my van, so I understand firsthand the importance of a good stove. In this article, we’ll be doing the research for you, helping you choose the best campervan stove for your unique situation.

We’ll be covering the best campervan stove options available, including critical buying factors, safety tips, and accessories to enhance your van cooking experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Discover the benefits of having a camp stove in your camper van kitchen area for easy meal preparation, savings, and enhanced comfort on the road.
  • Learn about the different types of campervan stoves available and find the one that suits your specific van life needs and preferences.
  • Equip yourself with essential tips on buying, safety, and accessories to make your van cooking experience trouble-free and enjoyable.

Best Van Life Stove Reviews

Let’s dive into four types of stoves commonly used in van campers and their pros, cons, and recommended products.

Electric Induction Cooktop – Duxtop Portable Induction Stove

  • Uses electromagnetic energy to heat up the single burner stove directly
  • Requires magnetic materials cookware (cast iron or stainless steel)
  • Pros:
    • Eco-friendly
    • Safer, easy-to-clean
    • Precise temperature control
  • Cons:
    • Requires electricity to operate
    • More expensive
    • May not be suitable for heavy-duty cooking

Countertop Propane Stove – Coleman Gas Camping Stove

  • Compact camper van stove that runs on small propane canisters
  • Usually one or two-burner stoves
  • Pros:
    • Easy to use and store
    • Versatile and portable
    • Doesn’t require electricity
  • Cons:
    • Not as powerful as other camp stoves
    • May not be suitable for heavy-duty cooking
    • Requires propane canisters

LPG Gas Stove Hob and Sink Combo – Boat Caravan RV Camper 2 Burner LPG Gas Stove Hob and Sink Combo

  • Permanent, integrated solution built into a countertop
  • Typically has two burners or three burners
  • Pros:
    • Durable and stable
    • Space-saving and convenient
    • Suitable for large pots and pans
  • Cons:
    • Requires installation and modification
    • More expensive
    • May not be easy to clean and maintain

2-Burner Propane Camp Stove – Camp Chef Everest 2 Burner Stove

  • Classic and versatile portable camp stove for both indoor and outdoor use
  • Powered by small propane canisters
  • Great if you don’t want a permanent campervan stove in your van build
  • Pros:
    • Powerful and adjustable
    • Portable and easy to transport
    • Great for outdoor cooking
  • Cons:
    • May not be very stable
    • Affected by wind or weather conditions
    • Requires propane canisters

Buying Guide

Power Source and Fuel Type

When choosing the best stove for van life, it’s crucial to consider the power source and fuel type. Options include propane, butane, electric induction cooktops, and liquid fuel. Propane stoves are widely used due to their portability and easy access to small propane canisters. Larger propane tanks can always be added to a van build. Meanwhile, an electric stove offers energy efficiency and safety features with magnetic-based cooking.

Size, Layout, and Space-saving

Consider the size and layout of your van kitchen when selecting a camp stove. Some campervan stoves have space-saving designs like built-in options or foldable legs. A tabletop or countertop model may work for those who want a removable cooking solution.

Number of Burners and BTU Output

Depending on your cooking needs, you may want a single burner or multiple burners. A 2-burner camping stove offers versatility and more cooking space. Also, pay attention to the BTU output as this determines the camp stove’s heat output and cooking speed.

Portability and Durability

A portable stove is essential for active van life enthusiasts who might frequently change where they want to do their cooking. Consider a camp stove with durable materials, such as solid steel construction, that can withstand the wear and tear of van life.

Safety Features and Maintenance

Safety is paramount when it comes to using a camp stove inside a confined space like a van. Look for stoves with safety features like tip-over protection, flame control, and built-in carbon monoxide detectors. Ensure proper ventilation when using gas stoves to avoid carbon monoxide buildup. Opt for camp stoves with removable grates for easy cleaning and maintenance.

There are many options for a quality van life stove setup

Safety Tips

When it comes to using a camp stove in your van, safety should always be a top priority. To ensure a safe and enjoyable cooking experience, follow these safety tips:

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector and a fire extinguisher in your van. This will help you detect any potentially dangerous levels of carbon monoxide and be prepared in case of fire emergencies.
  • Ventilate your van well when cooking indoors. Proper ventilation is essential for preventing dangerous carbon monoxide buildup, which can result from burning fuel in confined spaces.
  • Keep flammable items away from the camp stove. Store things like paper, fabrics, and cooking oil at a safe distance from your cooking area to reduce the risk of fires.
  • Turn off the camp stove and disconnect the fuel source when not in use. Prevent accidental ignitions and ensure you aren’t wasting fuel by turning the stove off and disconnecting it from its power or gas supply.
  • Check for gas leaks regularly. Inspect your camp stove’s connections and hoses often to make sure there are no leaks that could lead to dangerous situations.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations for your camp stove. This will help you maximize its efficiency and safety.

By following these guidelines, you can make sure that cooking in your van is not only enjoyable but also safe.

Quality nutrition on the go

Van Life Stove Accessories

When it comes to enhancing your cooking experience during van life, there are some great accessories to consider. These not only make your time in the kitchen more efficient and enjoyable but also help you get the most out of your limited space.

  • Collapsible sink: A collapsible sink not only saves space but is also perfect for conserving water during cleanup.
  • Cutting board: A cutting board that doubles as a lid or tray will provide more functionality, and you’ll appreciate the extra surface area for food prep.
  • Spice rack: Keep your spices organized and accessible with a well-designed spice rack. This way, you can quickly add flavor to your meals without rummaging through your cabinets.
  • Nesting pots and pans: A neat set of nesting pots and pans will fit perfectly in a small cabinet and allow you to prepare various dishes without taking up too much space.
  • Silicone utensils: Opt for utensils made from silicone, as they can withstand high temperatures and are easy to clean.

Remember, it’s important to choose items that are not only convenient and functional but also save space, so your cooking experiences are effortless and enjoyable.

When considering a camp stove for van life, it’s worth mentioning that some stoves come with accessories that make using them more efficient. Some camp stoves have a stainless steel construction, offering durability and easy maintenance.

Carrying cases are helpful for keeping camp stoves safe and easy to transport. Also, look for a hose adaptor if you need to connect to larger propane sources. In case you’ll be cooking with larger pans, make sure your stove can accommodate them. Finally, wind guards are an essential accessory to help protect your flame during windy conditions so you can always enjoy a hot meal.

A 2 burner stove helps stay efficient


In this article, we’ve explored the best camp stoves for van life, focusing on the benefits they bring to your on-the-road lifestyle. A good campervan stove not only helps you prepare delicious meals but also makes your van feel more like home. By considering factors such as energy efficiency, power output, and size, you can make an informed decision and choose the best camp stove for your van life adventure.

With a wide range of product recommendations, you can easily find the best camp stove for your journey. Take action now, and buy the stove that fits your lifestyle, budget, and van space requirements.

We hope this article has provided you with valuable insights into the available stoves for van life and helped you make an informed decision. Thank you for reading, and we wish you a delightful cooking experience on the road!

Photo of author


Robert Johnson is the founder of Van Simply. He spent eight months traveling full time in his converted camper van and takes frequent shorter trips to explore the world. He enjoys taking his van on surf trips, visiting national parks, and meeting up with the wonderful people he has met on his travels.

Rent A Van For Your Next Adventure

Outdoorsy allows you to rent a van so you can check out this lifestyle before diving in. Full insurance is included in your rental.