Never Stand Between a Sleepy Camper and Their Coffee
Campfire Guy Here. Do you know who likes coffee? This guy. Do you know who likes having the ability to make coffee in the outdoors in a little over two minutes? Yep, this guy again. The Jetboil Flash Cooking System is my go to for boiling water and making coffee.
A Little History on Portable Stoves
Compact cooking stoves have been around since the late 1800’s. According to Wikipedia (who would never lead me astray), “French-born chef, Alexis Soyar, institituted many innovations, including cooking with gas, refrigerators cooled by cold water, and ovens with adjustable temperatures. In 1849 Soyer began to market his portable “magic stove” which allowed people to cook food wherever they were.” Just about everything you could ever want to know about portable stoves can be found here.
Enter the Jetboil Flash
Modern camping stoves try to strike a balance between weight, function, portability and ease of use. In a market full of cooking options, the Jetboil Flash fits the bill nicely.
I held off on picking up the Flash for a number of reasons. I already owned a cheap two burner camp stove and a GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Cook Set that has two pots for cooking. I’ve made many a meal car camping with this set up. At first blush, the Flash isn’t exactly cheap, currently listed for $99.95 on Amazon . I didn’t really see the point in buying one.
The Road to Faster Coffee
As I started camping with my son’s Boy Scout troop, I quickly realized two things. I needed to scale back my gear and having a coffee maker as a back up to the troop’s gear was critical. My unofficial motto for camping with Boy Scouts soon became “Be Prepared…to make coffee”. I can endure many hardships in the outdoors, but going without coffee isn’t on that list. I finally picked a the Flash about a year ago and have no regrets.
The Jetboil Flash is a workhorse for boiling water quickly. According to Jetboil, it can boil 16 oz in 2 minutes, 30 seconds. The stove attaches to the pot, which has a an insulating “cozy” around it. The “cozy” has a “color-change heat indicator window”. When the indicator turns orange, your water is ready. This is nice, but a little unnecessary, as boiling water tells me it’s hot enough.
The stove has a built in ignitor that has worked flawlessly. That said, I always carry a lighter as a back up, because coffee. The control valve is easy to use and folds up under the stove for storing. Screw the fuel canister (sold separately) to the stove, clip the stove to the pot, attach the stabilizer to the fuel cannister and you are ready for boiling water.
How I Make Coffee With the Flash
For making coffee, I keep it pretty simple and use the Starbucks VIA Ready Brew Coffee Packets . One packet makes one cup of coffee. I empty the packet into the cup, then pour my boiling water on top. Give it a swirl and it’s ready to go.
Burned Milk is Bad Milk
I did learn a very important thing the first weekend I used this. Don’t use it to heat up milk for hot chocolate. I got distracted by a shiny object and my milk quickly burned. I was left with a smelly, angry residue in the cook pot. A water and baking soda paste, some elbow grease and a few colorful words got the cook pot shiny clean again. Buy the hot chocolate that requires water, not milk.
When I’m backpacking or scaling back my gear for a car campout, the Jetboil Flash Cooking System has become my go to method to boil water for backpacking meals, coffee and more coffee.
- Easy to use
- Boils water quickly
- All the components nest in the cook pot
- A little on the heavy side
- Right after boiling, the cook pot is hard to remove from the stove
- Not the best solution for cooking for big groups
Specs (As provided by Jetboil)
Product: Jetboil Flash Cooking System
Dimensions: 4.1″ x 7.1″
Weight (without fuel cannister or stabilizer) – 14 oz
Capacity: 32 oz.
Output : 4,500 BTU/h
Price: $99.95 on Amazon. Pick one up here.
Special thanks to the talented Tony Gutierrez for the awesome cover photo! More of his work can be found over on Instagram.
This post contains affiliate links to help Campfire Guy purchase more coffee to give him the energy to write and to offset costs. The author purchased the Jetboil Flash with his own funds.