So you want to know what are the best backpacking cookware sets out there? You’ve come to the right place! 

Refueling after a long day on the trail is essential. And, if you want to eat more than just freeze dried meals you’ll need to bring along a cooking set. But, how do you know what are the best cookware sets for backpacking?

That’s where we come in. One of our goals here at The Adventure Junkies is to make your life easier when it comes to choosing outdoor gear. Here in this article we’ll walk you through what to look for while shopping for backpacking cookware and how to find the set that fits your needs best.  

If you’re looking for other hiking gear, don’t forget to check out our hiking resources page for more buyers guides like stoves 101, sleeping bags 101hiking poles 101GPS for backpacking and many others. Okay, let’s get into the best cookware for backpacking.

For more of our top hiking gear recommendations, check out these popular articles: 

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QUICK ANSWER – THE BEST BACKPACKING COOKWARE

  1. MSR Quick 2 System
  2. Optimus Terra He Cookset
  3. Primus Litech Super Set
  4. Winterial Camping Cookware and Pot Set
  5. GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Backpacker Cookset
  6. Stanley Adventure Two Pot
  7. G4Free Outdoor Camping Set
  8. MSR Alpine 2 Pot Set
  9. Sea to Summit X-Set 21
  10. Snow Peak Titanium Multi Compact Cookset

 

 

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BACKPACKING COOKWARE REVIEWS

MSR QUICK 2 SYSTEM 


Check out the latest price on:
AmazonREI

MATERIAL: Hard-anodized aluminum

INCLUDES: 1.5L nonstick pot, 2.5L hard-anodized pot, strainer lid, (2) Deep Dish plates, (2) Double-Wall Insulated mugs, (1) Talon pot handle

WEIGHT: 1.76 lbs

BEST FOR: The camp chef 

PROS: Easy to wash, sturdy handles, deep plates and bowls

CONS: Bulky

 

 

 

OPTIMUS TERRA HE COOKSET

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon


MATERIAL: Hard-anodized aluminum

INCLUDES: 1.65L Teflon coated pot, 1.7L non coated pot, 1.65L Teflon coated fry pan

WEIGHT: 1.59 lbs

BEST FOR: Quick cooking

PROS: Heat exchanger allows for quick boiling

CONS: Heavy

 

 

 

PRIMUS LITECH SUPER SET

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon


MATERIALS: Hard-anodized aluminum with multi-layer, non-stick titanium coating

INCLUDES: Two pots, a frying pan, and lid

WEIGHT: 1.9 lbs

BEST FOR: Gourmet camp meals 

PROS: High quality, Big enough to cook for a few people

CONS: Heavy, nothing to hold lid in place when stored

 

 

 

WINTERIAL CAMPING COOKWARE AND POT SET

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon


MATERIAL: Solid and light aluminum oxide

INCLUDES: Pot, frying pan, tea kettle, serving ladle, 2 bowls, serving spoon, cleaning sponge, carrying bag

WEIGHT: 1.5 lbs

BEST FOR: Backpacking Newbies

PROS: Durable, Great Value

CONS: Unnecessary accessories, bowls are small

 

 

 

GSI OUTDOORS PINNACLE BACKPACKER SET 

Check out the latest price on:
AmazonREI


MATERIAL: Hard-anodized aluminum

INCLUDES: 2L pot, fry pan, strainer lid, 2 insulated mugs with sip lids, two bowls, folding pot gripper

WEIGHT: 1.8 lbs

BEST FOR: All in one cooking 

PROS: Set nests together, easy to clean

CONS: Need to be careful not to scratch pots and pans when using metal utensils

 

 

 

STANLEY ADVENTURE 2 POT

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon


MATERIAL: Stainless steel

INCLUDES: Two stainless steel pots, a folding cutting board, collapsible spatula, ladle, and two bowls

WEIGHT: 2.81 lbs

BEST FOR: Heavy Use 

PROS: Compact nesting system, scratch resistant, durable

CONS: Too heavy for multi-day backpacking

 

 

 

G4FREE OUTDOOR CAMPING SET

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon


MATERIAL: Aluminum

INCLUDES: 1.3L pot, 1L pot, 2 lids/bowls

WEIGHT: 1.2 lbs

BEST FOR: Ultralight backpacking

PROS: Lightweight, compact, portable

CONS: Silicon handles easily melt

 

 

 

MSR ALPINE 2 POT SET

Check out the latest price on:
AmazonREI


MATERIAL: Stainless Steel

INCLUDES: 2L pot, 1.5L pot, lid, pot grabber

WEIGHT: 1.3 lbs

BEST FOR: Lightweight backpacking

PROS: Light, durable, scratch resistant 

CONS: Not versatile (difficult to fry with in)

 

 

 

SEA TO SUMMIT X SET 31

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon | REI


MATERIAL: Hard anodized aluminum base, silicone walls

INCLUDES: Two X-Mugs, two X-Bowls, one large X-Pot 

WEIGHT: 1.37 lbs

BEST FOR: Lightweight backpacking

PROS: Very compact, light

CONS: Expensive, not recommended for frying

 

 

 

SNOW PEAK TITANIUM 

Check out the latest price on:
AmazonREI


MATERIAL: Titanium

INCLUDES: 2 pots & 2 pans/ lids

WEIGHT: 0.7 lbs

BEST FOR: Ultra light backpacking, multi day trips and bicycle touring

PROS: Extremely light, quick to boil water

CONS: Not versatile (just for boiling), expensive for what you get

 

 


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COMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST BACKPACKING COOKWARE

PICTURE
COOKWARE SET
WEIGHT
PRICE
RATING
PICTURE
COOKWARE SET
WEIGHT
PRICE
RATING
MSR Quick 2 System
1.76 lbs
$$$
4.6
Optimus Terra He Cookset
1.59 lbs
$$
4.4
Primus Litech Super Set
1.90 lbs
$$
4.5
Winterial Camping Cookware and Pot Set
1.50 lbs
$$
4.6
GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Backpacker Cookset
1.80 lbs
$$$
4.7
Stanley Adventure Two Pot
2.81 lbs
$$
4.9
G4Free Outdoor Camping Set
1.20 lbs
$
4.5
MSR Alpine 2 Pot Set
1.30 lbs
$$
4.8
Sea to Summit X-Set 21
1.37 lbs
$$$
4.5
Snow Peak Titanium Multi Compact Cookset
0.70 lbs
$$$
4.1

 

 

 

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST COOKWARE FOR BACKPACKING

TYPES OF MATERIALS

Backpacking cookware comes in a variety of materials. Choosing the right one for you will come down to how you plan to use it and your budget. 

HARD-ANODIZED ALUMINUM resists scratches and is long lasting, plus it’s more durable than regular aluminum. The downside is it’s more expensive than normal aluminum. 

ALUMINUM is an affordable lightweight option that is a good conductor of heat, which means faster cooking time. The downside is it dents and warps easily. Also, raw aluminum can react with certain foods, which changes their flavor.  

TITANIUM is extremely lightweight without compromising strength and it’s thin walls allow it to heat quickly. It is typically the most expensive option.

STAINLESS STEEL is durable and scratch resistant. This is a good choice if you use your gear often and are hard on it. The downside is these sets are typically the heaviest options.

 

WEIGHT

Like any piece of gear you plan to pack into your backpack, weight is a critical factor. If you want to go ultralight, have a look at titanium sets. However, if you plan to use your cook set for more than just boiling water, you should consider non stick aluminum options. Although these sets aren’t the lightest, they are better for frying.

 

CARE & CLEAN UP

Certain types of pots and pans are more difficult to clean and care for than others. Food can easily become stuck to the bottom of stainless steel and titanium pots and pans. Aluminum pots and pans with non stick coatings are easy to clean but you’ll need to take extra care not to scratch them.

 

GROUP SIZE 

To determine which set you need you’ll need to consider how many people you plan on cooking for. If you’re going on a solo trip you can probably get by with one small pot but when it comes to groups of 3 hikers or more you’ll need to plan accordingly. Some sets come with a variety of pots and pans, some even come with cups, plates and bowls.

 

GRABBER VS HANDLE

Most cookware sets include a handle or a detachable one (a grabber). A pot grabber is a handy little tool for your cooking set because you can use it on multiple pots. The downside to the grabber is you have to continuously grip while using it, it’s also easy to loose your hold on it and spill your food (a serious problem on a long hiking trip).

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