Best Camping Dinnerware (Buying Guide)
When it comes to outdoor gear, there’s something every camper, hiker, and backpacker should invest in… Quality dinnerware. It might seem trivial, but packing the right plates, bowls, mugs, and cutlery on your trip can make a big difference to your camping comfort. Forget about disposable paper plates or a regular bowl from your cupboard: camping dinnerware is specifically designed for outdoor performance. Lightweight, durable, and compact: it will let you enjoy your meals in style, without weighing down your pack.
In a hurry? Here’s the test winner after 10 hours of research:
- 8-piece designer mess kit for stowing and serving food on the go; Contents store compactly inside bowl and lid
And here’s an overview of the best camping dinnerware on the market today:
Though you can buy pieces individually, we’re big fans of camping dinnerware sets that contain all the essentials in one, comprehensive kit. Offering more bang for your buck, and often including handy carrying bag or storage sacks. That is exactly why we decided to create a Best Camping Dinnerware overview, introducing you to our favorite options on the market.
Let us help you navigate your way towards the best plates, cups, and cutlery for you in this Best Camping Dinnerware Overview. From cheap and cheerful plastic kits to sleek stainless steel and enamel sets: there’s a match to make every reader a ‘happy camper’.
Get inspired about upgrading your gear with one of these best-value, top-rated camping dinnerware sets and explore the options below:
Best Camping Dinnerware – Overview
GSI Outdoors Cascadian 1-Person Table Set
- FEAST IN THE FOREST: Featuring one 9-inch plate, one 6-inch bowl, one 12-ounce mug, and a full-sized fork, knife, and spoon. The Cascadian 1-Person Table Set is a necessity for all your outdoor dining...
This affordable set by GSI includes a 9-inch plate, a 6-inch bowl, a 12-ounce mug, and a full-sized fork, knife, and spoon. All tableware and cutlery in the set are made of 100% recyclable polypropylene. This BPA-free plastic is super lightweight and does not retain any odors of flavors, meaning your s’mores won’t suddenly taste of hotdogs even after intensive usage.
We like that the cutlery is extra wide-handled, meaning it also easily fits in gloved hands. Maintenance is also a breeze: simply rinse with some soapy water and voila, you’re done. The GSI Outdoors Cascadian 1-Person Table Set comes with a handy mesh bag included, making it easily portable for usage on the go. Weighing just 7.5oz in total, this single-person kit by GSI is one of the lightest mess kits on the market, adding to its backpacking appeal.
Highly-reviewed camping favorite
Customer reviews on the GSI Outdoors Cascadian 1-Person Table Set are super positive, with hundreds of 5-star consumer rating praising the kit’s value and durability. Campers say it is basic, but still adheres to a high-quality standard and feels quite sturdy. Reviewers also praise the inclusion of a mesh carrying bag.
Minor cons mentioned are that the polypropylene plastic is not super heat-resistant, meaning it might bend a bit and become too flexible when serving hot food. And some consumers reckon even though it’s affordable, it might still be a bit overpriced considering it is only made of plastic.
That said, we reckon that the GSI quality standard, and the included mesh carrying bag, are worth it – and rate it as an excellent deal in camping tableware.
UCO 4-Piece Camping Mess Kit
- Mess kit for camping, backpacking, scouting, and meals on-the-go; includes plate, bowl, 3-in-1 spork utensil, and tether for securing kit and contents
The bowl and plate connect with an airtight seal, allowing you to also use them as a container for dry-food, snacks, and more on the go. The included tether allows you to secure the spork diagonally on the plate/bowl combo: meaning no spare parts can get lost in your pack. We like that the bowl and plate also feature rubberized grips on the bottom, preventing them from slipping off your camp table. The handy multifunctional spork features 3-in-1 versatility. The dual-ended spork features a spoon on one end and a fork with a serrated knife-edge on the other: combining all your cutlery needs in one, lightweight design.
The UCO 4-Piece Camping Mess Kit is produced of quality materials to ensure long-term usage. The spork is made of durable reinforced glass nylon, whilst the bowl and plate are both made of BPA-free plastic. Making the set lightweight, dishwasher-safe, microwave-safe, and low-maintenance.
A smartly-designed basic kit
This sleek set is highly-rated by other campers, who praise its smart design, modest dimensions (8 x 8 x 3 inches), and lightweight appeal (0.6oz). Reviewers say the convenience of using it as an extra storage container for food or gear is super handy, whilst confirming the seal between the bowl and plate is indeed airtight and won’t cause spillage. Minor cons are that the plastic construction makes is not particularly suited to serving hot meals as the shape might warp. Also, some reviews say it’s slightly tricky to properly clean the bowl/plate combo around the edges, making clean-up a bit of a hassle.
Overall we still rate the UCO 4-Piece Camping Mess Kit as a nifty choice in camping tableware for those with modest size needs. If you already own a camping cooking mesh kit and are looking for basic dinnerware, this set is ideal. However, if you want a bit more functionality, for example by the inclusion of a mug, it may be a bit too basic.
- Can be used for food storage
- Might be ‘too basic’ in functionality
- The air-tight seal may still leak
- Not heat-resistant
Light My Fire 8-Piece Meal Kit 2.0
- 8-piece designer mess kit for stowing and serving food on the go; Contents store compactly inside bowl and lid
Designed exclusively for Light My Fire by Scandinavian designer Joachim Nordwall, the 8-Piece Meal Kit 2.0 combines sleek ‘Scandi’ design with heavy-duty Nordic functionality. The set includes all your tableware basics, that can be bundled in one, compact container held together by a sturdy harness. Easy to fit in any daypack, it’s a clever, innovative take on the traditional mess kit.
The Light My Fire Meal Kit 2.0 is an upgraded, improved version of the brand original kit, and now offers even more versatility and functionality for campers. This updated set contains all your Light My Fire Favorites, such as the original 170ml SnapBox container with lid, an oval-shaped 320ml SnapBox container with lid, and the brand’s best-selling Pack-Up cup. Also included in the kit are a plate, a bowl, a cutting board/strainer, a spork, and a handy carrying harness.
The MealKit 2.0 by Light My Fire measures 7.6 x 7.6 x 2.4 inches when packed, and weighs 13.5oz. Do note that if the weight is slightly too heavy for your daypack allowance, you can also choose to leave out certain accessories to minimize the grams carried. All the items in the set are made of BPA-free, dishwasher-safe and odor-resistant plastic.
Clever Scandanavian design elements
What makes this set truly stand out from the crowd are its clever design elements. For example, the containers have snap-lock lid closures to create a waterproof seal and feature handy internal measuring lines to help you determine portion size. We’re also big fans of the Pack-up-Cup: a collapsible cup that can hold hot and cold drinks. Oh, and we love that this set includes a 2-in-1 cutting board/strainer, as this is super handy for food prep, and is rare to find in both cooking mess kits and dinnerware mess kits.
The Light My Fire Meal Kit 2.0 scores a big thumbs up from other campers, and has outstanding customer reviews. Consumers praise the set’s versatility, value, durable construction, and love the inclusion of the cutting board as much as we do. Minor cons are that the plastic is not very heat-resistant and might warp when serving hot dishes. And some reports mention the rubber strap/harness is prone to snapping, taking away the advantage of securing your set firmly in place. However, as the kit comes with a 1-year Manufacturer’s Warranty, any defects should grant you a replacement or refund, so don’t worry about this too much!
- Includes cutting board/strainer
- Collapsible cup
- Can be stored in one bundle
- 1-Year Manufacturer Guarantee
- Great value
- Not heat-resistant
- Rubber harness might snap
- Not as durable as steel
Stansport 24-Piece Enamel Camping Tableware Set
- High quality durable 24-piece steel tableware set with blue enamel finish
This comprehensive Stansport dinnerware kit is essentially a 4-person mess kit. The set includes 4 plates, 4 bowls, 4 mugs, and 4 flatware sets (spoon, knife, fork). This set might be a bit too big/large for day hikers or backpackers, but it’s the best-value tableware set on this list for families, RV enthusiasts, car campers and more. We particularly like the style of the Stansport 24 Piece Enamel Camping Tableware Set. The place settings have a classic blue, double-coated enamel finish. This finish not only adds to their visual appeal, but also makes the plates, bowls, and mugs more durable and scratch-resistant. The tableware is further enhanced with a modern stainless steel edge detailing, giving the set a little bit of extra ‘oomph’.
If you’re looking for a full-sized addition to your camp kitchen, this Stansport dish set can be your perfect match. The plates measure 10.5 inches. Whilst the 6-inch bowls are generous enough for a proper serving of soup after a long day of outdoor fun. Also, the full-sized metal cutlery set is heavy-duty enough to tackle any kind of meal, including some juicy steaks straight from the barbeque.
Heat-resistant, heavy-duty performance
A big pro of the Stansport 24-Piece Enamel Camping Tableware Set is that, unlike the plastic options on this list, it is heat-resistant. Whilst plastic might warp or bend when exposed to hot meals, these dinner plates and bowls retain their solid steel shape. Minimizing the risk of spillage and leaks.
This is not only the best-selling choice in camping dinnerware but also one of the highest-rated sets. Customer reviews praise the kit’s shatterproof, steel construction and outstanding durability. Campers also praise the set’s value, ease of usage, and style. There are some cons. Some reviews mention that the enamel is prone to chipping, whilst others say the stainless steel edge of the plates may rub off after extensive usage. We’d also liked it if the set was available in different colors, as currently, the only option is blue enamel.
Overall, we rate the Stansport 24-Piece Enamel Camping Tableware Set as a solid choice in camping mess kits, though we wouldn’t particularly recommend it for hiking and backpacking. If you want an ultralight option for your daypack, consider a plastic and collapsible option instead. That said, if you simply plan to move this set from your car straight to your camp kitchen, or plan to use it in an RV, you simply can’t beat the value of this enamelware set.
- Excellent value-for-money
- 4-person set
- Stainless steel rim on plates
- Double-coated enamel finish
- Take up quite a bit of space
- Enamel may chip
- Stainless steel rim might rub off
- Not ideal for hikers/backpackers
Wealers Unique Complete Messware Kit
- PREMIUM DISHES SET – This set comes with the ability to set up for one Person. This mess kit was made exclusively out of high quality stainless steel material, and is good for anyone that needs to...
The biggest appeal of the Wealers Unique Complete Messware Kit is its solid, stainless steel construction. The manufacturer has used food-grade 201 stainless steel for the plate and bowl, and even more durable 304 stainless steel for the cup. We also like the polished finish on the steel, which adds to its visual appeal. The big advantage of stainless steel over plastic materials is that it is heat-resistant and extra durable. Your plates will not warp when serving hot meals, nor will they scratch or damage easily when stored in your daypack. Plastic can degrade, enamel-coatings might chip, but it takes a lot of effort to damage stainless steel cookware and dinnerware.
This entire set by Wealers only weighs about 14.1 oz. Yes, we know that’s not ultralight, but if you want a heavy-duty set that will outlast cheaper plastic options, it seems like a fair trade-off.
Also available in 2- and 4-person set
The polished stainless steel set by Wealers is also available in a 2-person and 4-person version. So if you like the look and feel, and want to share it on a camping trip with family and/or friends, simply upgrade to one of these larger sets. They still include the same plate, bowl, mug, and flatware: just double or quadruple the amount. The mesh carrying bag is also available in two different colors: green and blue, allowing you to match it to your other outdoor gear if you want.
Other campers give the Wealers Unique Complete Messware Kit top marks for its sturdy stainless steel construction, durability, ease of usage, and sleek polished steel finish. Customer reviews say the stainless steel plate and bowl are large enough to hold normal-sized dinner portions, such as foil packet meals, whilst the cup is generous enough for a decent serving of coffee.
Minor cons are that the set is slightly more expensive than plastic options and that the cups and plates are not insulated. That last part is especially important to remember: as it means the material does heat up when you serve hot foods, and you might, therefore, risk scalding your hands if you’re not careful.
- Solid stainless steel construction
- Outstanding durability
- Contains all the basics
- Shatterproof and heat-resistant
- Mesh carrying-bag included
- Slightly more expensive
- Steel plates/mug/bowl may scald your hands
- Not the most lightweight option
Each set on this Best Camping Dinnerware overview is a top-rated choice for your camping needs. Which one classifies as ‘The Best’ depends on your requirements. If you want an ultralight option with basic functionality that takes up minimum space in a daypack, the BPA-free plastic UCO 4-Piece Camping Mess Kit is a solid option. However, if you’re looking for a full-sized, extra-durable set to pack in your RV, or to take car camping, the steel and enamel-coated Wealers Unique Complete Messware Kit offers outstanding value-for-money. That said, you can’t go wrong with any of these options. As we’ve ensured each option scores top-marks on value, quality, and convenience!
If we had to pick a winner, the Light My Fire Meal Kit 2.0 would be top of our list. This kit includes all your camping essentials such as plates and bowls, plus comes with a few handy extras such as storage containers and a cutting board/strainer. If you only require the dinnerware, you can always elect to leave the extra utensils at home to save on packing weight/space. However, we think you will get plenty of usage out of every single item from the kit. Made of quality, BPA-free plastic, the set is lightweight and the clever collapsible cup ensures it can be packed in one, secured bundle. Held steady in place by a nifty plastic strap. We also like that the set is available in multiple colors.
The excellent customer reviews serve as testimony that this affordable set lives up and exceeds expectations. Actually, it also lives up to its name, because the Meal Kit 2.0 definitely lights our fire.
Tip: Looking for more camping cooking/camping kitchen gear? Then check out our buying guides on the Best Camping Cooking Mess Kits, the Best Camping Coffee Mug, the Best Camping Spork, and the Best Camping Tea Kettle!