Best Portable & Small Skillets

Best Portable & Small Skillets

When you are going camping or backpacking, weight and space can be a problem. But I think there is always room for a skillet in your pack. There are a lot of different kinds of camping skillets on the market from aluminum to titanium, but it all depends on what you need out of one.

If you are thinking about making the switch from pans to skillets, here are some features for your consideration.

Before You Buy A Portable Skillet

While there are many things to consider when selecting a skillet, two factors stand out in importance: weight and size. Of course, not everyone is going to be hiking with their pan over hill and dale, but these are still key considerations for any cook no matter what the setting may be.

Here are three types of skillets that can be found on the market today for use in different settings: lightweight skillets which will hold up well when cooking at camp sites or when camping; home-use skillets which have thicker metals in their construction but are still portable enough for use; and cast iron skillets, which are extremely heavy but sturdy enough for any use.

Lightweight Skillets

Some of the best lightweight skillets out there include hard anodized aluminum skillets that come in a variety of sizes. These pans are light to carry around, can handle larger portions at ease, and cook food evenly throughout thanks to their thick vaporization plates beneath the pan. They also do not weigh much at all so they won’t weigh down your backpack or shoulder bag. Many people like using these pans when camping or hiking because they don’t take up too much room in your pack. Their handles fold over nicely so you can even fit them inside other items for easy carrying. Such features make them good for use when you don’t want to take the extra storage space that a regular skillet would afford you.

Another option is silicone-coated aluminum skillets . The best part about these pans is how easy they are to clean and care for. Since they are made from alloys like steel, they conduct heat well and cook food evenly, but their primary advantage is how much easier they make cooking at camp sites or while backpacking. With no rivets or handles that can snap off or chip, these pans just wipe clean after each use thanks to the design of the pan’s exterior coating. Try washing a cast iron skillet with soap and water if you have ever tried! Silicone pans also come in a variety of sizes so you can find one that fits your needs. These pans are well-suited for use by families with children since they are light, easy to clean, and won’t break if dropped accidentally.

Home-use Skillets

When you want the advantages of a skillet but don’t need it for camping or hiking purposes, there are several features to look out for when purchasing home-use skillets. For example, try finding one with deep sides rather than shallow ones because this feature makes cooking easier and more efficient at home. Besides cooking food faster (and usually with less oil), deep side pans allow you to cook larger portions in fewer steps which saves time overall when making meals for your family or friends. They also come with sturdy handles that are riveted to the pan.

While a skillet with a non-stick coating might seem like a good choice since it will allow you to cook with less oil, make sure that the interior of the pan is made from high quality aluminum or stainless steel. A coat of Teflon or other polymer may help food slide around more easily when cooking, but this coating can chip off and end up in your food once heated to higher temperatures. In turn, eating such items can cause harmful health effects over time since they lessen the body’s ability to fight disease naturally.

When buying home-use skillets, also consider purchasing one large enough so that you can fit a whole chicken inside without having to cut it up before cooking in order to ensure that it will cook evenly.

Another good feature to look for when shopping for skillets at home is a non-stick interior coating on the pan. This makes it easy to clean your skillet between uses and also reduces the amount of oil required while cooking. In turn, this allows you to serve healthier foods since you aren’t serving up fried meals every day.

Cast Iron Skillets

The best type of pan out there is a cast iron skillet . These skillets conduct heat well, which means that they cook food very evenly no matter what setting they are used in or at what temperature they are set at. They come with sturdy metal handles that don’t get hot even after hours of cooking applications so they never pose a safety hazard in your home.

A well-seasoned cast iron skillet is nonstick so you can cook with little to no oil during your recipes, which makes cooking healthier meals easier than ever before. As an added bonus, these skillets are long lasting and can last for generations in many families. The only downside to owning one of these cooking tools is how heavy they are when compared to other types of pans out there on the market. However, the weight shouldn’t pose any problems unless you have health issues that prevent you from lifting moderately heavy items.

For families who want metal kitchen utensils that are easy to clean, safe for their children to use, heat up quickly without getting too hot, and will last them a lifetime, a cast iron skillet is a wise choice.

Top Portable & Small Skillets

Lodge 6.5 Inch Cast Iron Skillet. Extra Small Cast Iron Skillet for Stovetop, Oven, or Camp Cooking
81,583 Reviews
Lodge 6.5 Inch Cast Iron Skillet. Extra Small Cast Iron Skillet for Stovetop, Oven, or Camp Cooking
  • 6.5-inch Skillet can saute, sear, fry, bake and stir fry
  • Pre-Seasoned and ready-to-use
  • Superior heat retention and even cooking
  • Sturdy handle with hole for hanging when not in use
  • Made in the USA

Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Nonstick Frying Pan

Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Nonstick Frying Pan / Nonstick Skillet, 8 Inch, Bronze
473 Reviews
Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Nonstick Frying Pan / Nonstick Skillet, 8 Inch, Bronze
  • PREMIUM NONSTICK FRY PAN: Premium-quality nonstick is long lasting and metal utensil safe, with superior food release and effortless cleanup.
  • FAST, EVEN HEATING: The nonstick frying pan’s heavy-duty, hard-anodized construction provides quick and even heat distribution to help reduce hot spots that can burn foods.
  • SUREGRIP HANDLE: The Anolon SureGrip fry pan handle is dual riveted for extra strength, color coordinated, and designed for a comfortable grasp.
  • OVEN SAFE PERFORMANCE: This versatile 8-inch nonstick skillet with handle featuring Anolon SureGrip covering is oven safe to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • PRODUCT DETAILS: Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Nonstick 8-Inch Frying Pan with Extra-Strength Dual Riveted SureGrip handle, Bronze. Lifetime Warranty.

Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet

Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet With Assist Handle, 10.25', Black
81,583 Reviews
Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet With Assist Handle, 10.25", Black
  • One Lodge Pre-Seasoned 10.25 Inch Cast Iron Skillet
  • Assist handle for better control
  • Unparalleled heat retention and even heating
  • Pre-seasoned with 100% natural vegetable oil
  • Use to sear, sauté, bake, broil, braise, fry, or grill

Backcountry Cast Iron Skillet

Backcountry Cast Iron Skillet(6 Inch Small Frying Pan + Cloth Handle Mitt, Pre-Seasoned for Non-Stick Like Surface, Cookware Oven / Broiler / Grill Safe, Kitchen Deep Fryer, Restaurant Chef Quality)
1,331 Reviews
Backcountry Cast Iron Skillet(6 Inch Small Frying Pan + Cloth Handle Mitt, Pre-Seasoned for Non-Stick Like Surface, Cookware Oven / Broiler / Grill Safe, Kitchen Deep Fryer, Restaurant Chef Quality)
  • Cast iron has superior heat retention for even cooking, restaurant quality searing and comes pre-seasoned for teflon like non-stick cooking surface when used with a thin layer of oil. Ready to use out of the box!
  • Use with confidence on all cooking surfaces: gas, electric, induction, oven, broiler, grill and even the fire pit.
  • Your skillet can rust so keep it out of the dishwasher, do not soak and dry immediately after cleaning. Use warm water, scrape any stuck bits with a spoon, a little elbow grease with a rag and finish with a paper towel. Lightly polish with a stainless steel chainmail scrubber for a smooth patina.
  • Proudly designed in the USA, pre-seasoned with our proprietary oil blend, cast from the finest virgin ore and built to last for generations to come.
  • Compare to LODGE CAST IRON AMERICAN MADE SINCE 1896 and Utopia Kitchen. Support small business and save!

Lodge Miniature Skillet 3.5 Inch

Lodge Miniature Skillet, 3.5', Black
81,583 Reviews
Lodge Miniature Skillet, 3.5", Black
  • cast iron provides superior heat retention and is unparalleled for even cooking
  • skillet is 3.5 inches in diameter. suitable for small batch melting, mini individual deserts or utilize as spoon rest
  • mini skillet is seasoned with 100% vegetable oil; no synthetic coatings or chemicals for a natural, easy-release finish that improves with use
  • easy care: hand wash, dry, rub with cooking oil
  • made in usa. lodge has been making cast iron cookware in south pittsburg, tennessee (pop. 3,300) since 1896. with over 120 years of experience, their cast iron is known for its high quality design, lifetime durability, and cooking versatility

Characteristics Of The Best Portable Skillets

Before you go out and buy a portable skillet, there are a couple things to consider first: How big do you want it to be? Will it have legs so it does not need to sit on top of your stove? Does it have a non stick surface or is it just bare aluminum? What type of handle does it have? Is the handle separate from the skillet so you can place only the pan over your heat source?

What Size Skillet Do You Need For Camping/ Backpacking

The size skillet you decide to bring with you will depend on if you are backpacking or camping. If you are backpacking I would say no bigger than 10 inches because anything larger and it will be hard to fit in your pack. Also, make sure that whatever skillet you get has a lid! It will help keep water out while boiling pasta, veggies, etc. while cooking and for storage afterwards!

Aluminum Vs. Titanium Skillets For Camping/ Backpacking

Titanium skillets are lighter than aluminum but more expensive and stronger than all the stainless steel ones out there! Aluminum is generally less expensive and lighter than titanium. If you choose an aluminum skillet, make sure it is thick enough not to buckle when being used over a fire or stove top. There are some pans that come with non stick surface so you can skip buttering them down before cooking. If you buy one without a non stick surface, coat it with butter or oil just as if you were cooking in your kitchen at home before taking it out into the field.

Ease Of Use And Clean Up

Some skillets come with detachable handles which makes storage and cleaning much easier. They normally latch onto the skillet with some kind of clasp or clip system. You can even simply leave it on there when you are cooking over an open flame! The most important thing to think about though is if your skillet has legs with it for you to cook over a camp stove instead of in the fire itself. Make sure that whatever one you get will fit into your stove without having to take out the top grill part!


Because there are so many different types of skillets out there on the market today, here’s a quick recap of some important features to look for when shopping. You want to find a skillet that has sturdy metal handles that won’t get hot even after hours of cooking time; deep sides rather than shallow ones to increase cooking efficiency; and an exterior coating which makes cleaning easy between each use. Non-stick coatings inside the pan are also helpful for families who want to serve healthier meals at home since they allow you to cook with less oil during your recipes. Cast iron skillets make great additions to any kitchen since they heat up well, don’t get too hot even after hours of use, are easy to clean, and are long lasting.

Written by Speaking Small

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