EcoZoom Stove Review and Giveaway!

Off-Grid Cooking

This winter has been horribly cold for most of us, with snow and ice like we haven’t seen for a very long time. Our wood stove has been blazing almost non-stop (thank goodness for all of the free wood we’ve been able to gather!).

Cooking over wood stove
I’ve been taking advantage of the hot stove by cooking many of our meals over it. If we didn’t need the heat in our home, it’s unlikely that I’d cook over the wood stove though. It takes a few good sized logs before the top gets hot enough to cook on, and split, seasoned firewood is a precious commodity not to be wasted.

As we dream and plan for going off-grid, one thing we’ve thought a lot about is how to cook food without electricity. We do have a wood cook stove in our workshop, but it would take some major renovating to get it installed in our current kitchen. We could cook on it where it is, but it would be very impractical for me as I’d have to haul all of the children to the workshop with me every time I wanted to cook (and it isn’t exactly toddler proof up there). We do have plans for a summer kitchen, but who knows how long it’ll be before that gets built from the scavenged materials we’ve been accumulating. There are so many options for off-grid cooking, it’s just a matter of finding the right combination of methods best suited for our situation.

The EcoZoom Stove

One product that is becoming a popular option for off-grid cooking is the EcoZoom Stove. These rocket stoves are incredibly efficient, using very little fuel to cook a meal. The Versa model can burn wood, charcoal, or even dried biomass (dried plant materials, dried corn cobs, dried dung, pine needles, etc), which makes it a versatile stove to have for emergencies. I recently had an opportunity to test the Versa out, and was very impressed with the results.

EcoZoom Versa Review
My first observation was that this particular stove was much heavier than I expected (26 lbs). That’s mainly because the stove top is made from cast iron for durability. The combustion chamber (where you put your fuel) is made from abrasion-resistant ceramic, and the exterior is painted sheet metal.

If weight is an issue for you, they do make lighter EcoZoom models such as the Zoom Dura Lite which weighs 13 lbs.

IMG_2765
I found it very easy to light. Using a few splinters of wood from our wood pile and some dried grass in our yard, I was able to get a fire going very quickly in the stove, despite the wind blowing around me.

EcoZoom Stove Review
EcoZooms come with a stick support to help hold longer pieces of wood as you feed them into the fire. A handful of wood scraps was all it took to get my skillet nice and hot.

EcoZoom Versa Review
I fried an egg to see how well it would cook. Honestly, it was just as easy as cooking over an electric stove. I did notice a little bit of ashes flying up and landing in my skillet, but I blame that on the loose dried grass that I stuffed in the stove combined with the gusts of wind.

As for smoke, there really wasn’t any. In a survival situation where you wouldn’t want other people to be drawn to your location, a smokeless cooking source would be a great asset. The manual does warn that if you use too much fuel, or wet fuel, it can cause the stove to put off a lot of smoke, so you would want to make sure you used the right materials.

After flipping the egg and transferring it to a plate to cool, my toddler came over and sat down to help himself. Then of course I had to make one for each of the kids. I think the fact that it was cooked over a cool little stove made the eggs even more appealing to them.

EcoZoom Versa Review
It was surprising how little wood it took, especially when compared to the wood stove inside or a camp fire, which typically is my emergency backup cooking source.

EcoZoom Versa Review
I thought I’d also try boiling water, to see how quickly it would work and how much wood it would take. The EcoZoom stove comes with a galvanized steel pot skirt, which wraps around your pot and increases the efficiency of the stove by a stated 25%.

To boil a gallon of water I used 3-4 pieces of wood like you see in the picture (2-3″ wide, about a foot long). It took less than 15 minutes to bring the water to a light boil. Considering that my flat top stove takes just a little less time than that, I was very pleased with these results.

EcoZoom Plancha Stove
All in all I really enjoyed cooking over the EcoZoom. There’s so much satisfaction in preparing a meal without paying a dime to the power company. I wanted to make dinner over it that night, but what I was cooking would have required two stoves (one for boiling water for pasta, and another for frying ground beef and veggies). I was seriously coveting the double burner Zoom Plancha (pictured above).

I look forward to experimenting more with this stove, and learning how to be most efficient with the damper doors.

Pros & Cons

There are several factors making EcoZoom Stoves a great alternative cooking option.

  • They use very little fuel, and you can scavenge pretty much any dried materials from around the yard to burn in it.
  • They’re made with high quality materials, and are designed for everyday use.
  • They produce little to no smoke when burning the proper materials.
  • They’re small and lightweight enough to transport easily.
  • They don’t require any installation or chimney as other stoves do.
  • They’re much more efficient than campfire cooking or cooking over a more traditional wood stove.
  • They make cooking over a fire easy enough for anyone to do.

As much as I love them, there are a few things to keep in mind when considering an EcoZoom.

  • They’re probably too heavy to take with you on a backpacking trip.
  • You can’t use them indoors.
  • They don’t make a good source of heat (unless you can modify it somehow).
  • Not a good option for emergency cooking in bad weather unless you have an open shelter.
  • You can only cook one thing at a time, unless you buy the Plancha model.

Wood Heated Hot Water

I was also excited to find out that you can use an EcoZoom stove to create hot water without the use of any electricity. (See video below.)

 

This might very well be a great option for our off-grid needs.

Where Can I Buy An EcoZoom?

Check out EcoZoomStove.com for all available products and for more information.

Versa-EcoZoom

Win One Here!

**This Giveaway is now Closed. Congratulations to Jimmy (jimmys…@yahoo…).

Interested in winning your own EcoZoom Versa Stove and Starter Discs? Entering is easy! Simply fill in the Rafflecopter form below. (If you’re on your mobile and can’t view the form for some reason, leave a comment here letting me know which EcoZoom stove you like the best and you’ll earn yourself an entry!)

The more you participate, the more chances you have to win! Good luck everyone!

Giveaway ends 3/15. Available to the contiguous US only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
 

A big thanks to the guys at EcoZoom Stoves for providing the Versa for me to review as well as one to giveaway.

Tom Pritchard
Kendra
About Kendra 1123 Articles
A city girl learning to homestead on an acre of land in the country. Wife and homeschooling mother of four. Enjoying life, and everything that has to do with self sufficient living.

292 Comments

  1. I love the double burner one but hay I’b be happy with the single burner
    who says everything has to be done at the same time Ha ha.

  2. This would be awesome. With all the weird things happening lately, I’m thinking it would be good to have an option for cooking in case the power is out or something.

  3. These seem to be amazing little stoves, and in a power-outage, I would love to have this for a backup to our regular stove. If you are truck-camping, this would be great, and so much easier and efficient than an open fire.

  4. Wow! These look great. I hadn’t seen these before so I’m not a 100% sure which one is my favorite but the Zoom Versa looks awesome. Thanks for the giveaway.

  5. I just looked over your video and I’ve never seen this stove before ,I am entering to win the stove and will research the other models, thank you.

  6. WOW!!! I currently cook outside over an open fire with a steel grate. This looks sooooo much better! Would love to win it, but will definitely add this to my “must have” list for all the crazy prepping I do. 🙂

  7. Oops forgot to mention that the Plancha would be the best for us with a larger family but we could certainly make use of the Versa too!

  8. I have been looking at these stoves as an option for camping where you might not want to heat the whole camper on a warm day but cook a hot meal outside instead. I also thought it might be really useful for maple syrup boiling. And after all the power outages we’ve had this winter, have a hot water option that was shown in the video would be really nice.

  9. having recently moved back to a very rural area of Alabama, this would be a great addition to my just in case stash. The Versa model would suffice for my small family.

  10. Impressed with these little “hot” ecozooms. Not only are they compact for those in small spaces, they are easy to use. Also impressed how the company has reached out to help help those in countries that can benefit from using these items. That alone says alot.

  11. I would love to have one of your stoves. I especially like the hot water option. My hot water heater costs approximately $600.00 a year to opperate and now I must replace it for another $600.00. Seems rather dear.

  12. I’ve never used an EcoZoom. We are currently moving towards more self-sufficiency although we are in a very urban setting. One of the ways is that we intend to become less dependent on expensive utility companies. We’re very fortunate to have space to be able to use an EcoZoom.

  13. I would love to win the ecoZoom stove it looks fabulous ! We cook most of the summer over a grill outside but I feel like it costs up to much in burn material and loose a lot of heat with it to be efficient. This would be a great alternative!

  14. What an awesome give away. My husband and I are in the process of converting our property into a Homestead. This would be a great addition.

  15. Wow! I’ve never seen these before! They look amazing! I think I like the versa and the … oh shoot what was the name of that one with the chimney. Anyway. One of those two! The chimney one is great because you can also use it indoors.

  16. I would probably go with the Plancha model! These look like a very efficient way to have emergency cooking covered as there doesn’t seem to be a learning curve except for the wood feeding part.

    Kendra, I just wanted to let you know that your Tiny Houses link (Living Debt free in a Tiny House) is my MOST repinned Pin ever!! Unfortunately, it now shows an error code on your blog. Just thought I’d let you know. 🙂

  17. Love reading your blog. Our family is starting to pursue becoming more independent with our food and everyday needs and eventually hope to be living off grid. Thank you for the opportunity to enter to win this!

  18. HI!
    I was sent here by New Life On A Homestead! I’d never heard of EcoZoom until their recent post! I think the Zoom Dura Lite would be perfect for our family! We do a lot of outdoor activities and stopping to cook right there on the DuraLite in the middle of it would be awesome! Thank you for the contest and the opportunity!

  19. I like the Versa or Versa Lite. If I had a tiny home or cabin, the Zoom Plancha would be on my list. I also dig the purpose behind the Zoom Jet line.

  20. I have seen these stoves before and would love to have one!! I watched another video where a guy fried some pork chops with very little fuel in just a few minutes! Amazing! Thanks for the opportunity to win one of these!

  21. Soo cool! I want to as far off the grid as i possibly can so this product would be awesome… I wonder if I could build one similar myself??

  22. I have one of these stoves and they are great. i use mine when i dont feel like heating up the house. They use very little fuel and get hot fast.

  23. The Plancha model looks like something that would be fabulous on a deck and for larger families…but the single model would be amazing!

  24. zoom plancha would be great because of the two sides, but all of them are terrific, so I would love ANY of them, not picky. Great way to have to save tons of money, and being a widow, every penny counts!!!

  25. The Plancha looks like the most practical for most meals, althogh i cook alot of one pot meals that would be fine on the versa, too

  26. This is such a great option for off the grid cooking. I would love to try it. I only wish it was big enough to cook an entire meal.

  27. I really like how heavy duty the stove is. seems like that would be good to have something substantial to set a pot on. Safer too!

  28. The Plancha model looks fantastic and would definitely help my family become a little more sustainable. I appreciate you reviewing this stove and giving us a chance to win one!

  29. We lost power last weekend and began to wonder about being prepared for a longer power outage. This stove would answer a couple of those questions! Thanks for trying it out and being detailed in your description!

  30. A rocket stove has been on our wish list for quite sometime. I believe that the Versa model would serve our family nicely for years to come! Thank you, for the chance to win.

    Blessings,

    Allison

  31. A rocket stove has been on my wish list for quite sometime now. I think the Versa model would suit our family well for many years to come! Thanks for a chance to win one.

    Allison

  32. These Eco Zooms look great. The Plancha would be great at the cabin. If there was restrictions on burning a fire we could still cook with wood. A good alternative to propane!

  33. Awesome Awesome stove! Thanks for the review– It’s so helpful! I’ll be living off-grid soon on a small parcel in the Ozarks. I’m collecting and doing all the info to hopefully make this transition a successful one. Your blog is one of the blessings! Thanks, again.

  34. I love the Plancha and the Versa for different reasons. If I was forced to choose one today, it would be the Versa for use in camping and portability. Great looking stoves!!

  35. Annnnd you can tell I am typing on my mobile without view of the entire post as I type…geshhh. I really fat-fingered the last entry! 😉

  36. I would LOVE the platcha model. Three friwing biys and a 6’4″ hubby to cook for!! Great blog. I JUST found it today 🙂 I’m kind of prissy when it comes to homesteading kinds of things but I want to get over it so my family can be more self sufficient. Baby steps. Lol. Think I will get the hang of canning??

  37. I think I would love all of them for different reasons. I love the Zoom Versa because it is the one that is just right. :)But I love the lite model because it’s a bit more portable. The largest model, Zoom Plancha would be awesome for lots of outdoor cooking. I think the Versa model, is my fav!

  38. I can see the the importance of having one of these stoves especially with all the strange weather patterns we have been experiencing. This stove can bring peace of mind for those in need when all source of cooking is unavailable.

  39. I like the Versa model because you can burn more than wood in it, including dried dung! We have longhorns so we would never have a problem there! 🙂

  40. I have never seen these awesome stoves before,they are all very nice! I would choose the Plancha because I have a family of nine and it would work best for all of us! Thanks for the chance to win in this great giveaway! Good luck to all!

  41. I really want to try this! I love our old camp stove, but if we run out of fuel for it, it’s pretty pointless! Thanks for also listing the pros and cons of this little gem.

  42. The double burner zoom plancha would be my favorite. We don’t have air conditioning in our home so on the hot summer days this would be a wonderful way to cook on our patio! I have been dreaming of getting an EcoZoom for awhile. Thanks for this chance to win!

  43. I like the Versa model. The Plancha would be cool for an outdoor kitchen set-up, but for an emergency, the Versa could come with me (with some effort – it’s heavy!).

  44. I would love one of these,it would be such an easy way to cook with so little fuel,and a way to use up garden and yard waste.

    Where I live they don’t do leaf pick-up.

  45. This looks amazing! I’ve always wondered how well they would actually do, and your pictures said it all. Awesome! I would LOVE to win one!

  46. I like the plancha too but would it need/have the sleeve? I like the cooktop surface of the plancha and the ability to cook at two different temperatures.

  47. Versa Stove sounds great. I would love to have one. Sounds like lots of fun in the backyard, even without the emergency!

  48. We’re getting ready to purchase a different house with land and the kitchen is a wreck. Boy could I give this little baby a work out…. Love the versitility. Sounds like “more bang for your buck” kind of deal. Love the compactness.

  49. What a great looking stove! I like the Versa for style, but if we ever get to those end days, the larger double one would be needed for extended family that will come live with us.

  50. This is exactly the kind of contraption I am looking for. I am trying to transition off the grid, and I’ve been wondering how to cook, which method would be the easiest, and this looks like the best idea so far! Thanks! Shawn

  51. I agree with many of the other posters here. The Versa would be my choice because of the ability to cook with charcoal.

  52. Thank you for your blog. It is a blessing in my life. I would love to have more methods for cooking in a survival situation. I really do not know which model I would like at this point, but it is something to look at and show my husband. He would be interested too.

  53. this is one great stove i hate the smoke i would use this alot and i think my grandkids would enjoy it too as they love camping with us ty for the chance to win just started with your blog but am enjoying it alot

  54. We could really use the Eco Zoom Plancha. Even with a payment plan, we’re paying almost $300/month year round for propane! We’ve discussed getting much more sustainable, and what that would take. Thank you for the review, I’d never even heard of an option like this.

  55. This looks a lot easier to clean than the recycled cans stove we built. The double burner option looks awesome for a family!!

  56. Either of the EcoZoom Stoves would be an asset especially in the summer when it is too hot to cook inside. Plus, I love the idea of creating a way to have hot water in an emergency.

  57. I would be very interested in using this. We have been working on become more self sufficient for a year now, but have been unable to make big changes, like adding a wood burning stove.

  58. I’m sorry, I forgot to put my email on the other one, lol. (I haven’t had my full cup of coffee yet) I have never seen one of these, it’s really nice!

  59. Cool! We use an open fire pit in the summer for outdoor cooking but this is so much more efficient!! My DIY brain is trying to figure out how to make one myself (survival skills, you know) but if I could win one I would love it. I think the double one would be best for our large family (9 kids!) but just having the single would be nice for stews and things. Besides, I wouldn’t want to take away hotdogs and marshmallows over an open fire from the kids.. 🙂

  60. I think the Plancha looks handy, if only because of its size…but the Versa would be awesome to have as well!

  61. I love the EcoZoom Plancha the most, but even the single would be awesome to own!! Great giveaway, thank you! (I watched that video last year or so and was in awe.)

  62. I love the Plancha model! Would be great to have during the summer cooking heating something up outside without heating up the whole house 🙂 Thank you for doing this great giveaway!

  63. I can see the versa being a wonderful addition to my summer kitchen and emergency cooking kit. The Plancha would be great for everyday use.

  64. What a neat cook stove alternative! I had never even heard of these before! Thank you for offering one here! I’m with you! Although the single stove is great in a pinch, the double burner model is the one that I think would work the best. But either way what a neat alternative to have to prepping meals, especially in an emergency!

  65. This is the first time I have seen one and let me tell you I am in love, this would be perfect and awesome for my buyout location, I have a big enough space that I would be ok to use indoor or outdoor, would love to win this, I am a new prepper and anything to add to my supply would be amazing, thank you for the opportunity.

  66. We are moving to a small old farm house at the end of this month.. I have been dreaming of a stove like this as long as I can remember! It would be a great addition to our new home! When I saw this my heart melted! In love!! 🙂 I am excited to have found New Life On A Homestead, Great posts!

  67. I’ve looked into these before. Watched alot of videos. They really do a great job of cooking something quickly with little fuel.

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