Ah, the smell of freshly brewed coffee in the morning.
Your camping trip or caravan adventure shouldn’t be an excuse not to enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee. You shouldn’t settle for bland or low-quality instant coffee either, particularly during a personal time or holiday exploring the beautiful outdoors camping or caravanning.
Fortunately, there are camping coffee makers you can choose from and take with you on your next trip.
We’ve prepared a list of 9 coffee makers for camping that are portable, practical and delight you with your favourite hot beverage every time. Before we get to the list, here are some portable coffee maker tips and tricks to consider.
Why Buy a Camping Coffee Maker?
Hiking and outdoor time aren't the only time that a portable, all in one camping coffee maker comes in handy for the brew coffee of your cravings.
There are other perfectly good reasons to get a coffee machine and brew yourself a cuppa, such as the following:
You’re travelling, away from home and fancy hotels. Your AirBnB or serviced apartment might not readily have a camping coffee maker. Your own travel coffee machine would be perfect in this case.
A camping coffee maker helps you get through chilly mornings and evenings and practically survive the day with your favourite drink, specifically as camp kiosks are notorious for selling instant coffee or mediocre-quality coffee at best.
Always on the go
If your days are filled with field work, a portable coffee maker ensures you won’t go without a good cuppa anywhere.
Your office hates you
This header is obviously an exaggeration, but believe us: there are still offices out there that don’t supply its staff with coffee makers.
Now let’s proceed to the different types of coffee makers and how they suit your lifestyle and preferences.
Types of Coffee Makers in the Market
If you’re the type who drinks any coffee that’s in front of them, well and good. But there are coffee drinkers who make their own cuppa -- and are likely familiar with the various types of coffee machines available out there.
Here’s a brief look at these different types, particularly portable coffee makers for your favourite brew:
Also known as a Moka pot, this is a method of brewing coffee on a stovetop. It passes boiling water pressurised by steam through ground coffee.
There aren’t really any specific camping coffee makers of the stovetop kind, but the secret lies in any standard stovetop available. It can make for a compact, lightweight camping coffee maker for your trip.
This type offers barista style coffee. Similar to a full size machine, a portable espresso maker makes coffee via forcing a small amount of hot water through coffee that’s finely ground.
They might not fully live up to their full size counterparts, but travel espresso machines can work even without electricity.
French press coffee maker
In this portable coffee maker, add coffee grounds completely in the water.
While it’s similar to an immersion brewer, with a french press when the coffee is ready, the plunger is pushed through the coffee. Then the coffee is poured through the filter to block the grounds from reaching your mug.
A standard pod camping coffee maker can be compact enough to be taken on a holiday or on the road.
However, there are also portable versions available, working by using reusable pods or capsules that are pre-filled with ground coffee.
It’s an easy, fuss-free way of making your morning brew, but a common issue with pods, usually made of plastic, is the environmental effect they have.
Immersion or french press coffee plungers are another easy fix for making coffee. Here you simply use cold water instead of hot, and give the coffee grounds more time to brew.
This coffee machine works by fully submerging the coffee grounds in water.
Once ready, the coffee is poured through a filter to remove the grounds.
Note, though, that immersion brewers tend to be large in size compared to other portable machines.
How to Choose Camping Coffee Makers
It can be tricky to choose the best coffee maker for camping if (1) you’re buying one for the first one or (2) you have not considered what to pay attention to besides the cost.
Choosing camping coffee makers, though, shouldn’t be rocket science. Here are some factors to keep in mind:
Portable and easy to carry
The camping coffee maker model should be easy to pack, use and carry on your camping or backpacking trip. You should easily take it from your bag and brew in a couple of minutes, then straight to enjoying a steaming cup of delicious coffee.
The machine should be versatile and has brew strength that can easily be adjusted as you wish.
Aside from using coffee grinds, it’s increasingly suggested to use environment-friendly disposable and reusable coffee cups to help keep the planet clean.
Easy to clean
Select a model that’s easy to clean and hassle-free on your camping trip. Clean the filter for another brewing session.
Having discussed this, let’s go right onto the list of noteworthy camping coffee makers.
Portable Coffee Makers You’d Probably Want to Buy
What are products made to satisfy your needs for camping coffee makers? Let’s dive right into it:
Weighing 336 grams and providing 80 milliliters in capacity, the Wacaco Nanopresso is super lightweight, compact and made for travelling.
This lean, mean coffee machine offers cafe quality espresso even while you’re in the middle of nowhere.
Worth mentioning: It can reach a max of 18 bars of pressure in the extraction process. This means high-quality coffee! No manual force, too, is necessary, as the coffee machine does all the work already.
The Nanopresso comes with a detachable cup and a wide range of accessories, including an adapter, reusable pods, mat, thermos and a barista kit.
AeroPress Coffee Maker
Another compact, lightweight and competitively priced portable coffee maker, the AeroPress Go Portable Coffee Brewer harnesses an immersion brewing process. It can produce a wide range of coffees in a few minutes, with 350 micro filters to boot.
At 318g in weight it’s a little lighter than the Nanopresso, making for a friendly hiking or overseas trip companion. Its smallness, however, isn’t a deterrent to making 1 to 3 cups of coffee for every press.
A built-in mug and lid adds to the on-the-go coffee experience.
Snow Peak Coffee Drip
If you intend to save so much space in your bags or caravan and still have an awesome cuppa, then the Snow Peak Coffee Drip might be a good bet.
It features a light, stainless steel body that won’t rust and will last long. It can also fold flat for easier packing.
Among camping coffee makers, this is among the friendliest to use for its simple pour-over feature. With the Snow Peak Coffee Drip, you can just grab fine or coarse coffee grind and a standard cup and you’re good to go.
Remember, though, that it needs coffee filters.
nCamp Portable Coffee Maker
Among the top camping espresso makers available today, this coffee maker from nCamp is compact and far more portable than the traditional Italian mocha pot because of its folding handles.
The all-in-one design stands out and you won’t have to worry over cups or filters. The serving size, too, packs a punch at 340mL or about four small espresso caps.
Note that while it’s great for caravan camping, the nCamp might be too big for backpacking.
Generic: Stove Top Percolator
A stove top percolator is a handy way to make good coffee inside your caravan without power required.
The process is simple: Fill it with water. Add your coffee, then tamp down. Put it on the caravan gas stovetop, and you’re done.
These things make good and strong coffee, multiple cups while you’re on the go, and take up nearly no space. Of course, no power needed!
On the downside, you’ll probably end up making a full pot every time. This might still be good news if you are fond of consuming a LOT of coffee.
Bialetti Moka Express
A star when it comes to making multiple coffee cups, the Bialetti Moka Express is a good fit for those looking for a stovetop coffee maker for camping.
It may not be the most compact, but the Bialetti offers a rich, authentic Italian espresso brew in a matter of minutes. A quick espresso maker, for sure.
Simply add water to the bottom part, add ground coffee to the filter found in the middle and then place the unit on the stovetop.
Perhaps one of the biggest cons with this is you will need stovetop access. You’re good if you often camp with a stovetop in tow or stay in a hotel or resort; otherwise you may want to skip this option.
Presto MyJo Coffee Maker
This portable coffee maker stands out for two things: it’s a single cup coffee maker and it’s extremely affordable.
The Presto MyJo is known for its compact, lightweight quality, as well as the option to use pods or ground coffee.
Made from plastic, this coffee maker is easy to clean, with just a quick rinse needed. It also has slip as well as heat resistant silicone grips for safe handling.
If you love your pod coffee and wouldn’t want to part with it while travelling, then Presto MyJo might be a good fit.
But if you don’t want to put in a few long hard pushes to extract and want something longer-lasting than its plastic components, then you might want to look elsewhere.
Coleman QuikPot Propane Coffee Maker
Coleman is a trusted name in camping and caravanning gear, but does it hit the mark when it comes to camping coffee makers?
This machine’s ideal for families and groups with its 10-cup capacity. The built-in hotplate makes coffee stay hot longer, while brewing is a breeze as you simply push a button and it stops working when the coffee is ready.
Cons: It’s not the fastest-working with 18 minutes to get the coffee ready. It can be quite expensive as well.
Staresso Portable Manual Coffee Maker
We finish this list strong with this slightly bigger, but still quite compact manual coffee machine.
Working fine with both ground coffee and capsules, the Staresso can reach pressures of up to 15 to 20 bar. You can even make milk froth with it, attracting those who love a flat white, cappuccino or iced coffee.
The all-in-one device entails no electricity or battery issue, features a stainless steel pump along with coffee chamber and is made of BPA-free material.
The shots, though, may not be as strong as Nanopresso’s and the glass parts may be a little too much for backpacking.
Final Note in Choosing Portable Coffee Makers
Whether you’re eyeing a pod machine, flair espresso maker, ultralight java drip, french presses or a stovetop espresso maker, it’s important to consider your needs, preferences and the environment in which you’ll use the coffee maker for a decent cup.
Are you okay with lots of coffee in a single batch, or is waste a no-no?
Are you quality over quantity, or the other way around?
Do you want simple and straightforward but yielding just-OK coffee, or do you prefer a little more complicated process but awesome cafe quality espresso?
Are you okay putting in some manual work or do you want your coffee machine or trusty espresso maker to do everything?
Good luck and wish you a great cuppa on your next camping trip or caravan adventure! It's always a great time for delicious coffee no matter where you are.