Recently we were sent an Ecozoom Versa Stove to review. I’ve seen many wood burning stoves over the years, some tiny and some huge, and some we have tried for our sister site, TrailCooking. Overall, I was never impressed, because these wood burning stoves often had floorless designs, which meant they couldn’t be used during fire bans, or any place where fires were banned. They were messy, tricky to light and filthy after handling.
However, the Versa is different. A lot different. It’s sealed. It stays cool on the outside. It works amazingly with even the heaviest cast iron pots.
Weight: 14.25 lbs
Bottom damper door regulates air flow while top door is left open or closed depending on wood or charcoal fuel use
Durable three-pronged cast iron top
Fully insulated body retains and transfers maximum heat to your pot or pan
Refractory metal lined combustion chamber
Reinforced metal door frames
Sturdy steel handles with silicone grips keep handles cool while stove is hot
And here is another thing:
I enjoy grilling and cooking outdoors, but setting up the big grill is a pain. It isn’t “hard” but it is time-consuming and it uses a lot of charcoal. You have to get going an hour before cook time and expect it to burn for hours after. Not a quick spur of the moment event. The first time we used the stove we made a package of organic hot dogs. I wasn’t expecting the stove to be ready that fast, so I grabbed something quick to cook on it! The boys were very happy, since Mom rarely lets them have that.
Add the charcoal in the center:
Tinder in the lighting area (it reminds me of setting up a charcoal chimney for the big grill!) and light.
Within less than 20 minutes, it was showing temps of 900* inside, and I am cooking like crazy on it. As for smoke? Only at the start. Unlike a grill, you don’t fumigate yourself with smoke. Every time we have used it, I go in and there is no “campfire” smell on my clothing. I haven’t used it with wood yet, so I will update when I do. Another note: it sips fuel. It uses barely any charcoal, especially compared to a large grill. It is highly efficient.
It’s so easy to light it up, we have used it a couple of times since receiving it. With our kitchen in the middle of a remodel, this stove has been amazing to use. And who doesn’t like to cook outside in the summer?
The cast iron pans never move. No fear of sliding.
The delicious “breakfast for dinner” came out of One Pan To Rule Them All, on page 235.
One hot cast iron skillet, sausages, tomatoes and eggs, all sizzled up together. What more could one want? Well….I did heat up some bourbon beans on the side!
We have enjoyed this stove so much I am going to build a permanent area for it in the backyard, so I can cook with ease. For homesteading or camping, it’s incredibly easy to use.
FTC Disclosure: We received a stove for potential review.