The Best Smokeless Fire Pits in 2023, According to Outdoor Experts


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Oct 19, 2023

The Best Smokeless Fire Pits in 2023, According to Outdoor Experts

Our product picks are editor-tested, expert-approved. We may earn a commission

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Eye-watering smoke, be gone.

NOTHING RUINS a warm fire on a chilly night like a nice fat cloud of eye-watering smoke. Move seats all you want: Through some cosmic wizardry we will never fully understand, that smoke will find its way back to your face soon enough. We've all been living with this inconvenient necessity for years, but with the advent of the smokeless fire pit, mankind may have finally mastered the open flame.

If you're shopping for a smokeless firepit of your own, you're in the right place. We've been testing these modern marvels for the last several months, and we've got some findings to share. What follows are our lessons learned after spending time with the best smokeless firepits of 2022 as well as our top recommendations for every type of pit available.

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Generally speaking, the best smokeless fire pits come in one of two types: Full-sized pits that are built to live on your patio or in your backyard, and portable pits that are better suited for smaller living spaces, camping, travel, etc. Personally we lean more toward portable smokeless fire pits due to their outright versatility, but there are definitely tradeoffs with each.

For instance, full-sized backyard fire pits tend to provide more warmth, which means more people can gather around them without fighting to stay warm. This makes them great for entertaining, and if you're planning on doing any cooking, you'll be able to cook for more people more easily. Lastly, we'll also mention that the larger and deeper your fire pit is, the less you have to worry about the size of your logs. Logs that stick out above the top of the pit create smoke, so this metric is important if you want to keep your pit truly smokeless.

Portable pits, on the other hand, are the masters of versatility. They do everything their larger cousins do, but work better in smaller spaces and make a convenient addition to campsites, tailgates, and beach hangouts. They usually aren't ideal for cooking, and their smaller diameters limit them to around 6 people, but the fact you can throw them in the trunk of pretty much any car and bring the party anywhere you go adds serious value.

Once you've decided on the size pit you're looking for, the next thing you'll want to consider is what kind of smokeless system is best suited to your intended use. When most people think of smokeless fire pits, they're thinking of traditional double wall steel designs like those found on Breeo and Solo Stove pits, but it's important to know this isn't your only option.

Don't get us wrong, traditional double wall fire pits like these are the most popular option for a reason: They're completely analog, which means all they need to create a smokeless fire is plenty of wood and a little time to warm up. The main drawback here is that the thick steel these pits are made from makes them particularly large and heavy, and even the most compact versions take up a fair amount of space and weigh well over 20 lbs.

The second type of smokeless fire pit is a forced induction pit, which uses an electric fan to create the necessary airflow to burn off smoke before it gets into the air. These pits don't require double wall construction, which makes them lighter and more compact than their traditional siblings. The main drawback of these pits is that they're battery-dependent, which means you'll have to keep them charged to keep the smoke at bay.

The third and final option is the good ol' fashioned propane pit. This might seem like cheating, but there's a good reason propane fires are still typically permitted when fire bans are in effect: They're much safer. Propane pits can be turned on and off instantly with the turn of a dial, and because there's no wood to worry about, you've got zero chance of starting a forest fire with a rogue ember. Your main drawback to propane pits is that they just don't quite scratch the campfire itch the same way a wood fire does, and they're also dependent on you having enough gas to keep your fire going.

The folks at Breeo pioneered the double wall smokeless firepit, and their X series pit is their current flagship model using that original design. These solid pits are made from rugged 304 stainless and corten steel, which means they're built to last forever and will only look better as they patina over time.

Breeo's combination of raised air vents in the floor of the pit and the aforementioned double wall construction do a great job of burning off the smoke once you get your fire going, but the X Series is more than just a handsome place to keep warm. Breeo has actually engineered an entire cooking system around the X series pits which includes a 360-degree griddle, adjustable height grills, and even hangers for kettles and dutch ovens.

Take everything we love about the Breeo X series, add a handle and a set of adjustable legs, then shrink it down to a portable size, and you've got the Breeo Y series pit. The Y series shares the same bulletproof quality and handsome design as the X series, but adds in a handful of features that make it better suited to a wider variety of locations and uses.

The extendable legs, for instance, keep the heat from the fire off the ground (ideal for preserving wood decking or your friend's freshly cut lawn), but they also allow the Y series to be extended to a full 20" height as needed for grilling duty. Speaking of which Breeo also offers all the same great cooking accessories for the Y series (albeit in smaller sizes), so you can griddle, grill, or simmer with it to your heart's content.

Breeo may have invented the double wall fire pit, but the folks at Solo Stove drive a hard bargain with their latest Bonfire 2.0 portable fire pit. This portable pit comes in at roughly half the price of the Y Series above, but delivers on the smokeless experience just as well.

We also appreciate that Solo Stove includes a carrying case in the asking price for the Bonfire, and also managed to keep the weight down to a much more carry-friendly 23.3 lbs. The Solo Stove doesn't include all the bells and whistles of the Breeo, and your cooking options are few and far between here, but if you're just looking for a smokeless fire pit to gather around, it's the best deal going.

Where most smokeless firepits are essentially just double-wall steel barrels, the folks at BioLite take a radical departure from the norm with their high-tech FirePit+. This pit burns off smoke by supercharging the fire with an electric fan, and the unique design comes with some unique benefits.

The most striking is that without the need for two layers of solid metal to direct airflow, the FirePit+ is able to utilize a see-through steel grate, giving you a 360-degree view of the "floating fire" effect. The high-tech design also makes for a much lighter and more compact firepit overall, and allows you to monitor power levels and control the fire's intensity wirelessly with your smartphone. We'll also note that BioLite includes both a charcoal tray and a grill attachment with the FirePit+, so you've got everything you need to cook right out of the box without paying for any accessories.

If you're looking for a solid fire pit for your backyard or patio and aren't too concerned about portability, Tiki's 25-inch smokeless model is a strong contender. This pit is all about convenience, and includes an external ash pan for easy cleanup, and all-weather cover for outdoor storage, and Tiki even thrown in a free bag of easy-start firewood to sweeten the deal.

We'll also note that while we're fans of the Breeo's rustic charm, we know some folks will prefer a more sleek and modern look. The Tiki's black powder-coated finish is just what the doctor ordered, and will deliver better feng-shui for some yards and patios.

We probably don't need to tell you that forest fires have been completely out of control for the last several years, which is why forest-friendly alternatives like portable propane firepits have become increasingly popular of late.

Our current favorite is the Ignik FireCan, which is basically a traditional "ammo can" propane pit with an added touch of class and refinement. Just like a traditional propane grill, this firepit starts and stops instantly with the turn of a dial, which is ideal for chilly mornings around camp when you want some quick heat, or for peace of mind at bedtime that your fire is 100% extinguished. We also love that you can add lava rocks to the FireCan for some added ambiance and ambient heat.

We've been preparing for this roundup since the first leaves started turning back in September of this year: We started by hoarding all the most popular firepits on the market in our office, and then started testing them each individually and side-by-side.

So how do we test them, you ask? Simple: We take them out and use them the same way you will. We've been toting a firepit or two around with us for the past several months for everything from backyard BBQ's to backcountry camping trips, and collecting feedback along the way from friends, family, and anyone else gathered around the fire with an opinion to share.

Kurt Spurlock is a commerce writer who specializes in outdoor gear and motorcycles. His work has been featured in Men's Journal, The Manual, and Bike EXIF.

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NOTHING RUINS Best Fire Pits Best Outdoor Furniture Best Outdoor Gear Best Camping Gear Best Space Heaters Best Heated Blankets Best Camping Chairs Best Tailgate Grills Full-sized pits portable pits double wall fire pits forced induction pit propane pit