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Multi-Fuel Stoves

As the name says, multi-fuel stoves allow you to burn more than one type of fuel. This can be useful if you're traveling abroad. Keep in mind, there are different versions of multi-fuel stoves, and not all stoves burn all fuels.

Often "multi-fuel" refers to liquid fuel stoves that can burn more than one type of liquid fuel. For example the MSR Dragonfly burns white gas, kerosene, unleaded auto fuel, diesel, and jet fuel. Some hybrid multi-fuel stoves can burn both liquid fuels and compressed gasses. The MSR WhisperLite Universal, for example, can burn isobutane canister fuel, white gas, kerosene, and unleaded gasoline. Some alcohol, solid fuel, and wood stoves also have multiple options For example the Vargo Triad Multi-Fuel Stove burns alcohol, solid fuel tabs, and gels.

Pros

  • burns multiple fuels
  • more versatile

Cons

  • heavier
  • more expensive
  • need to clean and maintain

Top Picks

How we choose: The best multi-fuel stoves highlighted here were selected based on 207 reviews of 27 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

How we test: Trailspace is powered entirely by our community of readers. The reviews posted here reflect the real-world experiences of outdoor enthusiasts just like you.

If you've used a multi-fuel stove that you think should be listed here, please share your experience.

Disclosure: Trailspace never accepts payment for gear reviews, product placement, or editorial coverage. When you buy through affiliate links on our site, Trailspace may earn a small commission, which helps cover the costs of running the site.

Top Liquid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

MSR XGK-EX

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (13 reviews)

Excellent stove for boiling water and fast cooking I have used this stove in the Beartooth Wilderness of Montana and the Porcupine Mountains in Michigan. I was able to turn the stove low enough that I could cook eggs and pancakes with it, but that is really pushing the stove on the low end. If you need to simmer a pot of gourmet gumbo, look into the MSR Dragonfly instead. I highly recommend this stove and have never been let down by any MSR product.

Reasons to Buy

  • Hot and fast
  • Burns anything
  • Primes easily

Reasons to Avoid

  • Weight
  • Can't simmer

Stove sets up easily. Just thread the pump into the bottle, connect the fuel line, and it is ready to light. It doesn't have a built-in lighter, but I have never had an issue lighting it with a match. The flame is slightly adjustable, but don't count on this stove to simmer. This is primarily a water boiling stove, but I have used it for pancakes, eggs, and bacon with desirable results. Boil time with white gas was about 9 minutes for 2.5 liters of water in a real world test. This is very close to the claimed times.

Read more: MSR XGK-EX reviews (13)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Canister Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

MSR WhisperLite Universal

user rating: 5 of 5 (12 reviews)

Finally here is a true multi-fuel (MSR calls it a hybrid) stove that burns both liquid fuels and canister gas (upright or inverted). Not only does it burn these fuels, but it does it well — plus it simmers...no it really does! In just a couple minutes the stove can be configured to burn the various fuels (see below) by simply changing a couple parts using the supplied tool. This is a great option for anyone who wants a stove that can be used year round in multiple climates, with multiple fuels. For groups it allows flexibility through the use of multiple fuels — or for those who travel abroad to places where some fuels may be harder to get or if it's not clear what fuels will be available. The Universal will burn: White gas – Unleaded auto gas – Kerosene Canister gas – (upright or inverted)

Reasons to Buy

  • Multi-fuel (liquid and canister)
  • Everything is included
  • Changing fuel types is quick
  • Well built / sturdy
  • Will handle large pots
  • Good windscreen
  • Simmers well
  • Instructions easy to understand / follow

Reasons to Avoid

  • Price point
  • Weight
  • Small parts to keep up with
  • Will not support pots smaller than 4 ¼ in. or 11 cm. in diameter.
  • Fuel line is stiff

A review of the MSR Whisperlite Universal Hybrid fuel stove A backpacking stove made by Cascade Designs – Seattle WA, USA I received this stove from Cascade Designs for testing and used it on five separate outings as well as a lot of testing at home. Stove Description: The stove arrived in a nice looking cardboard package (see photos), it included the stove, all parts for changing fuel types, pressure pump for liquid fuel bottles, canister stand, wind screen and ground protector, a nice stuff sack, and full instructions in three languages (three separate booklets) plus a quick reference guide in two languages, along with warnings etc.

Read more: MSR WhisperLite Universal reviews (12)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

MSR DragonFly

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (46 reviews)

After having my isobutane become unusable at temperatures below -30° C., I purchased this stove for winter trips. It is loud but there is a reason for that and that is it is creating huge amounts of heat.

Reasons to Buy

  • Excellent in cold weather
  • Can simmer, so it's great for the chefs
  • Multiple fuels can be used
  • Massive amounts of heat

Reasons to Avoid

  • Loud, literaly sounds like a jet
  • Big and heavy

The MSR Draonfly has been around for years. It is a tried and true expedition stove. It works on multiple different fuels from white gas, jet fuel, diesel, kerosene and gasoline. It will work in all temperatures and at all altitudes.  I bought the stove after struggling in colder temperatures to get my isobutane stove to work properly and this stove had no trouble in temperatures below -30° C. It is great at melting snow for water and can boil a liter in less than 4 minutes. The stove has a large pot stand that can easily accommodate large pots and pans with great stability.

Read more: MSR DragonFly reviews (46)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Canister Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

Primus OmniFuel

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (21 reviews)

There is only one thing preventing this stove from being perfect and that is the fact that it is a roarer burner: the jet of fuel is spread out onto the pan's surface by hitting a metal concave cover on the way up. Other than that, there is very little to fault it. The pump shaft is metal, not plastic (I know several people who have broken MSR pumps and sometimes have had to buy the entire pump assembly again). I have stood on this stove a couple of times and each time the legs just bend back into place.

Read more: Primus OmniFuel reviews (21)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

Primus OmniLite TI

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (3 reviews)

Lightweight but true expedition-grade stove for use on numerous types of fuel, regardless of the country where you are. In the meantime it’s well suitable for all people who often cook in cold weather and disregard the canister gas.

Reasons to Buy

  • Proven Omnifuel design (just scaled down)
  • Expedition-grade durability even for most challenging conditions
  • Very low tendency to clogging, easy to clean
  • Works well on most fuels you may encounter
  • Very small and lightweight for such a stove
  • Just 10% less powerful than Omnifuel

Reasons to Avoid

  • Awkward, heavy, and useless soft case
  • Roaring sound
  • Not very durable pump
  • No “automatic” cleaning needle
  • Fuel sprays when disconnecting the pump from the bottle

I’ve been using this stove since 2013 in all my outdoor adventures. The primary fuel is white gas in domestic trips and car petrol in international trips (for me finding the gas canisters or white gas in unfamiliar country is a waste of precious time). My primary stove in 2008-2013 was Primus Omnifuel, which I liked very much despite its weight and size.  There are two main reasons to use the multifuel stove instead of regular gas stove: Performance at low temperatures. If you cook at temperatures below +10 °C (50 °F) and ESPECIALLY below the freezing, the gas stoves are not a good choice for you.

Read more: Primus OmniLite TI reviews (3)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

Coleman 533

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (5 reviews)

Rugged stove that works well under all conditions. Easy to use but can be finicky in adjusting the flame.

Reasons to Buy

  • Rugged
  • Easy lighting
  • Durable
  • Size

Reasons to Avoid

  • Cost (2024) is pricey over $100 - I paid $35.00 a while ago.
  • Replacement parts still available.
  • Large coffee pot can be unstable.

My Coleman 533 is about 30 years old.  Used frequently on camping trips to perk coffee and cook simple meals.  Lighting the stove is easy.  If the stove is full, frequent pumping is necessary until fuels burns off to maintain a larger air volume in the tank.  The flame control does not work all that well.  The low heat "sweet spot" is hard to find and if you don't monitor it, the flame will go yellow and the stove will go out. A full large coffee pot has a tendency to be unstable due to the small footprint over the burner.  If you are careful however, it heats water quickly and coffee is ready in no time.

Read more: Coleman 533 reviews (5)

Liquid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

MSR WhisperLite International

user rating: 4 of 5 (42 reviews)

The only reason this isn't a 5-star review is because of the weight of this item compared to other stoves. But, I've used this same stove for 16 years. It has seen countless nights in temps down to the teens. It has NEVER EVER failed me. This is a workhorse stove that gets the job done!

Reasons to Buy

  • Reliability
  • Self-cleaning

Reasons to Avoid

  • Weight

There is a reason that MSR continues to make this stove. It works. It's reliable. It's easy to use. And, on and on... I bought my stove for my 2000 AT thru hike. It has never failed. It works no matter how cold it gets. I carry the 11oz fuel bottle. I've never used more than half the fuel in 5 nights, including a couple hot breakfasts. Yes, I could save 6 to 8 oz in weight if I switched to another stove. But, then I'd have to buy fuel canisters at $4 each. I'd contribute to waste with those canisters.

Read more: MSR WhisperLite International reviews (42)

Top Alcohol Stove / Solid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

Vargo Triad Multi-Fuel Stove

user rating: 3.5 of 5 (3 reviews)

The 2017 Vargo Triad is a very sturdy and functional alcohol/solid fuel stove that I will continue to use due to its bomb proof design and consistent alcohol burn times. It has some inconveniences with the need to use at least 1.5 ounces of fuel and difficulty in recovering leftover alcohol, so may not be the best option for boil in bag solo hikers, but works well for two people and other cooking styles who want the flexibility of using multiple fuel types depending on conditions.

Reasons to Buy

  • Sturdy construction
  • Fuel efficient
  • Long burn time
  • Consistent alcohol boil time
  • Adapts to fuel tabs and gels
  • Easy to refuel
  • Compact storage
  • Light weight

Reasons to Avoid

  • Needs 1.5 oz alcohol to bloom
  • Fuel recovery finicky
  • Best to fill with flip top alcohol bottle
  • Some more efficient options for solo cooking
  • Can retain some fuel

Note that this is a review of the 2017 Vargo Triad model, which is a multi-fuel (alcohol and solid tab/gel) stove - please refer to the 2003 model for the previous alcohol only version of this stove. I think any review needs context of the use and testing the gear was put through, and this is especially true of stoves due to the variety of approaches one can take to preparing meals on the trail. For the last few years, I have enjoyed the flexibility of my Trail Designs Sidewinder Ti Tri with Inferno for wood, alcohol, and solid tab fuel options.

Read more: Vargo Triad Multi-Fuel Stove reviews (3)

Alcohol Stove / Solid Fuel Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove / Wood Stove

Trail Designs Sidewinder Ti-Tri

user rating: 5 of 5 (2 reviews)

After more than three years of constant use, I can confidently say this is still my favorite stove and piece of gear that I own! The light weight, versatility of fuel types, and heating efficiency of the Sidewinder Ti Tri have exceeded all my expectations. Minor negatives include the multiple-part setup, price, and being sized for one pot per stove.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Versatile (wood, alcohol, solid fuel)
  • Very stable
  • Fuel efficient—carry less in forests
  • Sturdy construction and durable
  • Simmers well
  • Don't have to carry all fuel type components
  • Quite as a mouse

Reasons to Avoid

  • Setup takes a little practice
  • Price
  • Unique sizing to just one pot per stove
  • Multiple parts
  • Alcohol stove durability (same as other can stoves)
  • Blackening of pots (and hands)

After an initial review in 2014 and a minor update in 2015, I decided to completely rewrite this review as it didn't do justice to this great stove! I could rave on about this stove for hours, but will try to keep it to a couple chapters…as much as I love this stove if you are a simple "boil water and put it in a bag" person then I’ll save your time right now and suggest you go a different direction. However, if you love the camping aspect as much as the hiking part of backpacking, actually “cook” some meals, or just prefer the ultimate flexibility of multiple fuel sources then look no further or at least seriously consider the Sidewinder Ti-Tri!COOKING APPROACH After spending almost 30 years dabbling with canister, white gas, wood...

Read more: Trail Designs Sidewinder Ti-Tri reviews (2)

Top Wood Stove / Solid Fuel Stove / Alcohol Stove / Multi-Fuel Stove

Four Dog Stove Bushcooker LT I

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

I recently purchased a Bushcooker LT 1 from Don Kevilus of Four Dog Stoves. I had heard a lot of really great things through the online backpacking communities about this stove and I decided to take the plunge. Pros: Multi fuel-This stove will burn nearly any solid fuel, or denatured alcohol, or a combination of. Being designed primarily as a wood-gas stove. Lightweight- at 2.5oz(includes ash plate and alcohol cup), the Bushcooker itself is 2.2 oz Small/Compact- Fits neatly and securely in a Snow Peak 700ml mug or similar size mug.

Read more: Four Dog Stove Bushcooker LT I review (1)

More Reviews of Multi-Fuel Stoves

Trailspace reviewers have shared 207 reviews of 27 different multi-fuel stoves.

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Other Types of Backpacking and Camp Stoves

Find more backpacking and camp stoves reviewed in these related categories:

Alcohol Stoves

Compressed Fuel Canister Stoves

Liquid Fuel Stoves

+6 more types

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