The 7 Best Camping Coffee Makers of 2023, Tested and Reviewed

Bestargot’s easy-to-use, multifunctional French press was our top pick.

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camping coffee makers
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Tamara Staples

No matter how rugged you're planning to get or how light you're keeping your load, morning coffee is one comfort of home that's hard to leave behind. Campers who need a caffeine boost have no shortage of portable coffee makers to choose from, so we tested the most popular options on the market to find out which truly deserve a spot on highly selective packing lists.

Testers with a range of coffee preferences and camping experiences were given each brewer in out-of-the-box condition with only the included instructions. They reported on each maker's ease of use, cleaning process, portability, durability, and, of course, their coffee's quality of taste.

Several caffeine rushes later, the Bestargot Titanium French Press was our favorite camping coffee maker. But if you're looking for a super compact option with a near-negligible weight, feel lost without your espresso, or plan to play barista for a big group of campers, check out the other winners on our list to find your perfect match.

Best Overall

Bestargot Titanium Camping French Press

Bestargot Titanium Camping French Press


Why We Love It: With collapsible handles, measuring marks, and an extra handle for campfire brewing, this versatile pot has all you need to make the perfect cup of coffee in any environment.

What to Consider: While great for portability, the French press's dimensions are better for solo use than making family-sized pots of coffee.

Multipurpose, waste-free and ideal for all weather, this small French press went straight to the top of our testers' must-have lists. Its smooth and rich brews impressed tasters, and since the titanium presser is perfect for heating other foods like soup, it's a handy appliance to have around at camp all day long.

"It does its most important job well — making great coffee — and is lightweight and durable to boot," one tester said. The brewing process is simple even for French press first-timers. A handle across the top makes boiling a breeze whether you're using a fire or stovetop, while measuring marks engraved on the side of the pot add another dash of convenience to meal prep. Both the 3-cup cylinder and the plunger are easy to rinse clean and dry, even with a limited water supply.

And the Bestargot French press is definitely adventure-ready: it held up flawlessly during our durability test, it's lightweight enough for extensive treks, and it includes a lid that helps keep refreshments warm when temperatures drop. The shape of the handles fit comfortably in our hands and fold flat for easy packing. Crucially, a stainless steel filter means there's no need for paper disposables, so the press is a great pick for campers making an effort to minimize waste while enjoying the woods.

Price at time of publish: $70

Capacity: 3 cups | Weight: 7.7 ounces | Dimensions: 3.94 x 4.33 inches | Brew type: Immersion

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Tamara Staples

Best Pour-over

Sea to Summit X-Brew Coffee Dripper

Sea to Summit X-Brew Collapsible Camping Coffee Dripper with Reusable Steel Filter


Why We Love It: It's collapsible, lightweight, and extremely easy to use, but you don't have to sacrifice quality for convenience.

What to Consider: The X-brew can only make 2 cups of coffee at a time.

Our testers gave Sea to Summit's simple, compact, and ultra-lightweight dripper a perfect score. The collapsible pour-over comes fully assembled and weighs a mere 2.9 ounces. "I love that it collapses and has a fairly small diameter," one Travel + Leisure camper said. "It [also] fits easily in the nooks and crannies of my duffel." If minimizing your camping workload is a priority, you'll find the straight-to-the-point brewing process (put the grounds in the dripper, pour water over it — that's pretty much it) fits right into your schedule. And the cleanup? It only takes a few seconds to give the dripper a good rinse, so you can spend more time lounging by the fire or hitting the hiking trails. Speaking of taking on terrain, if you anticipate your gear getting jostled on the move, rest easy knowing we couldn't break the X-brew when we tried.

Even testers who expected to prefer steel coffee makers enjoyed the full, flavorful cups from Sea-to-Summit's dripper. It's made of food-grade silicone, meaning it can withstand temperatures from well below freezing to 440 degrees Fahrenheit and is highly resistant to chemical contamination and leakage. You won't accumulate waste if you use the included stainless steel mesh filter, but the dripper also works with paper filters.

Price at time of publish: $15

Capacity: 2 cups | Weight: 2.9 ounces | Dimensions: 4 x 3.5 inches and collapses to to 4 x .8 inches | Brew type: Pour-over

Sea to Summit X-Brew Coffee Dripper

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Multipurpose

Stanley Boil and Brew Camping French Press

Stanley Boil and Brew Camping French Press


Why We Love It: The plunger yields a perfectly even strain and is easily removed for boiling.

What to Consider: Some testers found the lid leaked from the rim when they poured coffee out.

This sturdy French press makes a great cup of ground-free coffee, and that's not the only reason it's a good camping investment. Although it takes up a non-negligible amount of space by backpacking standards, the foldable handle helps to save room and a 4-cup capacity makes it a prudent choice to add to your cooking arsenal. The stainless steel design can be heated directly over fire and trusted to last through years of campsite duty, and the naturally insulating material, along with the removable lid, maintains temperature and flavor for sipping and slurping at your leisure. One tester said, "It definitely serves a purpose for anyone looking for a camping or backpacking press. And it's a product that I do think can be used at home, car camping, or backpacking, which is kind of rare and definitely cool."

Cleaning and brewing with the three nesting pieces was simple and swift. Being able to easily change the strength of each batch of coffee also made the press a crowd-pleaser among T+L's group of campers. Like the other French presses on our list, it comes with everything you need to brew, so you won't be adding to garbage bags and wasting paper filters.

Price at time of publish: $23

Capacity: 4 cups | Weight: 14.88 ounces | Dimensions: ‎4.3 x 4.3 x 7.6 inches | Brew type: Immersion

Best Lightweight

GSI Outdoors Ultralight Java Drip Coffee Maker

GSI Outdoors Ultralight Java Drip Coffee Maker


Why We Love It: This small but mighty dripper made tasty cups of coffee each time we tested.

What to Consider: The brewing system is low-capacity and isn't as spill-proof as other options on this list.

The lightest and most affordable coffee accessory on our list, GSI's miniscule mug-topper is a backpacker's dream. A thoroughly minimalist design, the GSI coffee maker consists of a nylon filter and attached clip-on legs that fit everything from wide-rimmed thermoses to narrow water bottles. At first glance, the polypropylene legs may appear flimsy, but they breezed through our durability test and proved sturdy when we clipped them on and off our cups.The legs also fold flat, so storage doesn't get much easier than it is with this one-piece coffee maker.

Once your water is boiled, the pour-over will have your coffee ready exceptionally fast. Cleanup is just as effortless: excess grounds slide right off the filter with a quick rinse.

Price at time of publish: $11

Capacity: 1 cup | Weight: 0.4 ounces| Dimensions: 4.2 x 4.2 x 0.5 inches | Brew type: Pour-over

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Tamara Staples

Best for Big Groups

OXO Good Grips Brew Venture French Press

OXO Brew Venture French Press


Why We Love It: OXO's French press is virtually impossible to break.

What to Consider: It takes up a considerable amount of backpack space.

This clear, beaker-style vessel makes 8 cups of rich, bold java that gets an extra level of filtration via a slotted spout. The main pot is made of clear, shatter-resistant Tritan plastic while the comfortable handle, gasket for the smooth-working plunger, and lid are silicone. The materials can't be heated directly over a fire, but in a bustling food prep area, you might appreciate that the cylinder doesn't get as hot as steel models. The thoughtful design also includes a window on the cover so you can keep track of your water and coffee levels. Cleaning was by no means difficult; however, it does involve multiple pieces and therefore takes a bit more effort than some of the other coffee makers on our list.

Price at time of publish: $26

Capacity: 8 cups | Weight: 15.2 ounces | Dimensions: 7 x 7 x 9 inches | Brew type: Immersion

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Conor Ralph

Best for Glamping

Bialetti Moka Express Espresso Maker

Bialetti Moka Express Espresso Maker


Why We Love It: Coffee connoisseurs have made outstanding brews with this moka pot for almost 90 years.

What to Consider: It's heavier than the other French presses on our list and not ideal for brewing via fire.

The Bialetti Moka Pot has been a favorite of enthusiasts since emerging on the European coffee scene in 1933, and our testers raved about the undeniably top-of-the-line taste yielded by the Italian-crafted pot. Although you might think such beloved brew could only come from a delicate machine, the moka pot sustained absolutely no damage during our durability test. (No one needs a cracked pot ruining their relaxation in the fresh air.) Plus, it doesn't require soap to clean and rinses off easily.

Its size and nuanced heating needs do make it more suitable for more luxurious outdoor getaways than true backcountry stints. The 6- and 9-cup models are almost double the weight of similarly sized French presses on our list, but if a smaller size will meet your needs, the 11.2-ounce 1-cup model is perfectly manageable. And because it must be warmed on direct medium heat to produce the optimal — and much renowned — Bialetti taste, we recommend it for campers who already plan to bring a portable stove instead of relying solely on campfire.

Price at time of publish: $44

Capacity: Available in 1 to 12 cups | Weight: 11.2 ounces to 2.75 pounds | Dimensions: 4 size options | Brew type: Percolator

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Tamara Staples

Best for Espresso Lovers

AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker

AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker


Why We Love It: Batches of AeroPress's coffee are rich, customizable and generously sized.

What to Consider: Although it can produce bold, full-bodied coffee, the Aeropress doesn't make genuine espresso.

The AeroPress is versatile, durable, lightweight, and super easy to clean after brewing. You can adjust the proportions to make multiple espresso-like shots or opt for servings that taste more like traditional drip or pressed coffee. However, as any aficionado of the Italian-style method knows, true espresso is made when hot water is forced through finely-ground coffee beans via extremely high pressure, hence staunch diehards have to use another maker (more on that later) for the real deal. Nevertheless, one espresso fan among our testers thought all but the "biggest espresso snobs" would be satisfied by the rich taste this adaptable press attains.

The whole kit comes with a stirrer, funnel, filter stand, scooper, and carrying bag, but campers may find it useful to leave extraneous features behind to save space for more necessary and versatile camping tools. Paper filters are also included with purchase, but we'd prefer to have a more eco-friendly reusable option.

Price at time of publish: $32

Capacity: 3 cups | Weight: 1 pound | Dimensions: 4.22 x 4.22 x 5.26 inches | Brew type: Immersion

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Tamara Staples

Our Testing Process

We tested 18 of the best portable coffee makers on the market, comparing their taste, ease of use, portability, durability, and ease of cleanup. Each tester was given assembly and operating instructions as they were included by manufacturers.

We considered how clear and intuitive the directions were and whether all necessary components came in product packaging, as well as efficiency of the brewing process. We brewed full-capacity batches of coffee, aiming to achieve our preferred strength of taste. After several sips, brew quality was judged by the same standards to which we hold our normal at-home coffee makers. Any clogging, spillage, or user confusion were factored into our ratings. Testers were provided with limited cleaning resources similar to what is available at typical drive-up campgrounds in the United States: biodegradable soap, a dish towel, a collapsible sink, and no more than 32 ounces of water. We took note of the ease of cleaning and drying all pieces of the coffee makers.

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Conor Ralph

Next, we filled backpacks with typical camping clothes and gear and determined whether the coffee maker could pack away into compact, easy-to-transport luggage or was too large, heavy, or unwieldy to comfortably fit our packs. We wore the backpacks and walked around, observing whether the coffee makers caused any portability issues such as poking through uncomfortably or adding a noticeable amount of weight.

With the coffee makers still stowed away in the backpacks, we then dropped them off a ladder three times to determine how well they'd hold up during even the most rough-and-tumble of outdoor activities. After the drops, we recorded the degree of damage, considering whether any wear and tear was simply aesthetic or would affect the maker's functionality.

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Conor Ralph

After testing in our New York City lab, we took the coffee makers out into the wild and assessed their performances over the course of several months. Results of our test are updated as campers provide additional feedback.

Other Camping Coffee Makers We Tested

Five of the 18 coffee makers we tested did not make our list of recommendations but still had positive attributes that set them apart from the rest of the pack.

Wacaou Minipresso Portable Espresso Maker: It's a rare gem that makes genuine espresso on the go. But although the shots were delicious, testers found the steep user learning curve, tiny servings, number of pieces, and lackluster performance in the durability test made it an unwise choice for serious outdoor adventures.

JetBoil Flash Java Kit Cooking System: It comes with its own heating source, has an easily stowable design, and can make 1 liter of coffee at once — more than any other on our list. However, it's also the least affordable maker we tested, and we didn't feel the inconvenient cleaning and underwhelming coffee taste were worth the price.

Stanley Adventure Cool Grip Percolator: While the brand's French press blew us away, their clunky percolator isn't suitable for campers with an eye on portability and simplicity.

GSI Outdoors Java Press: We appreciated the clear, concise instructions and usability of this maker, but the nylon-wrapped cozy gave us trouble when it came to cleaning and drying. Other French presses we tested also outperformed it in brew quality.

MSR Mugmate Coffee/Tea Filter: Like other pour overs we tested, this one is extremely durable and supremely uncomplicated, but we did not consider it a winner because its rigid rim doesn't fit many mugs and the taste didn't make up for the loss of convenience.

camping coffee maker
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure/Conor Ralph

Tips for Buying a Camping Coffee Maker

Do a pre-trip trial run

Brew coffee with your new maker before hitting the trails or arriving at your site. It's important to make sure the brewer works with your other coffee accessories and filters work seamlessly with your preferred grind, as some brewers are better suited for either coarse or more finely ground beans. Test to see if all imperative pieces fit comfortably in your packing plan well ahead of your trip — you don't want to discover you're missing something for proper operation or cleaning after you've gone off the grid.

Consider the number of people you'll be serving

Small-capacity pour-overs are unmatched when it comes to portability, but if a lot of people will be depending on the maker for a morning caffeine boost, it could be worth bringing a larger brewer even though it'll take up more space and add weight.

Take portability and your other gear into account

A pour-over without a boiling pot is only useful if you'll already be bringing another receptacle to heat water. If you want a piece that can double as a pot for heating soups and other foods, opt for a stainless steel product with versatile features like extra handles, a large capacity, and measuring marks.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What’s the easiest way to make coffee while camping?

    Making coffee while camping will largely rely on your access to boiling water. If you know you'll be able to get the hot water you need, making coffee while camping really isn't that difficult. The easiest coffee to make will be the one that suits your timeframe, so if you're quick to break down camp, you may want to consider a pour-over travel mug or portable French press you can take with you.

  • What grind size should I use for my coffee maker?

    Your coffee grind size depends not only on the coffee maker you're using, but also on personal preference. For most coffee makers, you may want to start with a medium grind and adjust according to your tastes. You should also always read the instructions for your specific coffee maker to avoid the grounds slipping into your mug and to prevent sour or bitter flavoring.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

Commerce editor Lydia Price is a lifelong camper (she has the baby pics to prove it) and daily coffee drinker. She was among a group of testers who gathered in our New York City lab to compare 18 of the most popular portable and camping-aimed coffee makers for this article.

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Updated by
Taylor Fox
Taylor Fox, Commerce Updates Writer at Travel + Leisure
Taylor Fox is a Commerce Updates Writer at Travel + Leisure where she tests, researches, and writes about travel products. Taylor holds a Master’s in Geography and has been a writer and editor for over seven years.
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