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Best Camping Kettle: Our Top Picks for 2023
Ah, camping. There's nothing quite like spending time out in the open. Chilling by a lake, looking at the stars or just listening to the birdsong. What could possibly be better? Doing it with a brew in your hand of course! We're talking camping kettles here.
Now, you might think one kettle is the same as another – they all boil water, and surely that's all you need? There's a lot more to it than that though, and you'll need to ask yourself some questions to find the best fit for your trip. Our guide to the best camping kettle will have you brewing up quicker than you can say ‘two sugars in mine'.
In a rush? Here's our top 10 picks at a glance
- Best for: hikers – Primus LiTech Camping Kettle
- Best for: motorhomes or car campers – Vango 2 Litre Camping Kettle
- Best for: fastpackers and ultra-runners – MSR Titan Titanium Kettle
- Best for: pitches with mains hook-up – Kampa Squash Electric Kettle
- Best for: weekend campers – Fox Cookware Camping Kettle
- Best for: groups and families - Ibasingo Titanium Gooseneck Coffee Pot
- Best for: coffee and stories around the campfire - Donnagelia Stainless Steel Teapot Camping Kettle
- Best for: those on a budget – Kampa Brew Whistling Kettle
- Best for: backpackers and travellers - Sea to Summit Lightweight X-Pot Collapsible Camping Kettle
- Best for: extreme environments – Ridgemonkey Square Aluminium Camping Kettle
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN LOOKING FOR THE BEST CAMPING KETTLE
What Should Your Camping Kettle Be Made From?
Basically there are three main types of material used; stainless steel, aluminium and titanium. Kettles made from stainless steel are stronger and survive a bit of rough handling but tend to be heavier and bulkier than other types.
Aluminium is a popular choice as it is relatively lightweight yet still strong. We should mention that high doses of aluminium has been linked to brain diseases and other nasties so most kettles are constructed using aluminium that's been anodised – the metal has been coated with an oxide layer to separate it from the water. This has the added advantage of making the metal tougher and corrosion resistant as well as keeping you healthy - bonus.
If you want to go really light, titanium camping kettles are some of the most effective kettles out there for backpackers. Titanium is strong and safe but extremely lightweight – however it's on the pricy side. Most of the collapsible kettles are made with a silicon body on a stainless steel or aluminium base. This keeps them light, although silicon can split over time with repeated use. Make sure flames from the stove don't reach the silicon as it'll melt.
A campfire kettle has an extra-large handle designed for hanging it over an open fire.
Stainless Steel Kettle
If you're car camping or staying in a motorhome or caravan, stainless steel makes for a great camping kettle will fit the job nicely. Back packers will appreciate a lighter aluminium kettle that'll fit on a camping stove, whilst titanium would be the metal of choice for long distance walkers and wild campers.
The best camping kettle for you will depend on your style of camping. Do you have your own power source or will you be staying on sites with a mains hook-up? An electric kettle would be a nice luxury; a real ‘home from home' experience.
In a motorhome with an oven or taking the car? A stainless steel kettle such as the Vango would be ideal. Low on room? A collapsible kettle like the Kampa Squash will fit into the tiniest of spaces.
Thinking of back-packing or wild camping? You'd be better choosing one of the smaller aluminium or titanium kettles such as the Primus Litech or the MSR Camping Kettle. Check out our ultimate guide to wild camping to get you started.
BEST CAMPING KETTLE FAQ
Can I use a normal kettle for camping?
If you're going away in a caravan, campervan or motor home with your own power supply or access to a mains hook up, then theoretically yes, you could take a normal electric kettle. However you need to be careful not to overload the mains supply – kettles designed specifically for camping use less power.
A kettle designed to be heated on a gas hob could also be used for camping, but it will probably be bulkier and heavier than a camping kettle. If you're carrying your camping gear then you'll need something smaller and lighter.
How do I boil water when camping?
If you are in a caravan or motor home, it's easy – chances are you have a gas hob which you can use with your kettle.
Camping in a tent requires a bit more thought. You'll need to use a gas-powered stove – there's a whole choice of sizes, from a gas stove with hob-style rings to a tiny camping stove that fits onto a small gas canister. Your choice will depend on how you'll be transporting your camping gear and how many people you'll be catering for.
You can also heat water in kettles with a large handle over an open fire. We'd only recommend doing this in a controlled environment – building fires when camping is not a good idea and can cause serious damage to the environment.
Can I use my kettle to carry water?
It's not recommended – most kettles are designed with a pouring spout and steam holes, so you'll lose water out of it. It could also harm it over time as they're not designed to be wet for long periods.
If your kettle has a large removable lid then use it to carry cups, matches, lighters and cutlery instead.
Can I re-boil water?
It's always best to use a fresh batch of water. Re-boiling could concentrate chemicals present in the water, which could make it unsafe for drinking. No-one wants to be caught camping with a stomach bug…
How do I keep myself safe when using my camping kettle?
The best camping kettle will have safety features built in; think non – dribble spouts and heat resistant handles. However handles can still get very hot, so it's best to use a glove or a towel to handle the kettle when boiled.
If the kettle has a plastic folding handle, make sure it's upright before boiling – if it's too near the metal it might burn.
Don't over-fill the kettle - boiling water is likely to leak out of it.
Keep the kids away from camping kettles, hot water and stoves.
Try not to tip the kettle to far when pouring, as the lid might come off – a lap full of boiling water could seriously ruin your day.
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