Just because you’re sleeping under a few square feet of canvas in the middle of nowhere doesn’t mean you have to forgo your morning cappuccino or latte. Or any other kind of frothy coffee when it comes to that.
It may surprise you but there are plenty of milk frothers you can take with you to create the wonderful foam you need. And it doesn’t matter if the nearest source of electricity is in the next county. You don’t need it. If you’re camping and are dreaming of a lovely creamy coffee you just need to whip out your handheld or manual milk frother.
In a hurry?
Hang on. You can’t use a milk frother without electricity. Can you?
Well, yes you can. There are several different types of frother. Most frothers you’ll see in stores are the large electrical appliances. But there is also battery powered handheld models along with manual frothers which don’t even require batteries and are ideal for taking on your next camping trip.
They’re light, portable, can be used anywhere and are great value for money. There’s no way that buying one of these milk frothers will break the bank. But let’s look at each type of frother in a little more detail.
What are handheld milk frothers?
The clue is pretty much in the name. They are very light devices, usually around 100 grams, that you hold in your hand like a pen. They usually have a plastic body with an often detachable stainless steel whisk. They run on batteries (which last for ages but do put in fresh ones before leaving home) and will whip up a fantastic creamy foam in around 30 seconds. You can see more in the video below.
They are very easy to use. Just place in the milk and switch on. Then gently move the whisk up and down for half a minute or so and Bob’s your uncle. To clean, just pop the whisk head under running water and wipe down the stainless-steel shaft.
By the way, there are USB charged handheld milk frothers available. But for camping you need the battery-operated models. Of which there are literally dozens to choose from.
What are manual milk frothers?
These are great fun. They are bulkier than the handheld models because they have a container into which you pour your milk. These frothers have a handle which you pump up and down to create the foam.
Pump the handle 20 to 30 times, lift the lid and be amazed at the wonderfully thick and creamy foam you’ve made. Then simply pour on to your pre-prepared coffee and sit back and chuckle at those poor saps who are queuing at Starbucks for overpriced frothy coffee.
Handheld or manual frothers?
They can both be used on camping trips but, and it’s a big but, they do differ in the amount of space they take up. And space is usually at a premium when you’re off to the wilds for a week or so. Unless of course you’re ‘glamping’ in which case you’ll probably have mains electricity and room for a full-blown barista coffee machine with built-in milk frother.
But assuming you’re sticking to the traditional model of camping, you’ll want the smallest, most convenient milk frother you can get. And that will be a handheld device. They’re typically less than 30cm long and weigh from as little as 40 grams to a comparatively heavy (though it’s not really) 220 grams. The average is around 120 grams.
Typically, then, you’ll want to take a handheld frother with you if you want to enjoy a cappuccino in your tent. But which one should you buy for your next camping trip?
Here’s a few suggestions (by the way we’re assuming you’ve taken the coffee with you along with a stove to heat said coffee before adding your frothy milk). But, if you’re looking for the best way to make your coffee take a moka pot.
These come in different sizes. The one I use is tiny. It only makes one or two espresso style shots at a time but if there if you’re camping solo or with one other person it’s ideal. The moka pot and frother combined will cost around £20 ($26) so won’t break the bank and, more importantly, take up hardly any space.
Best milk frother for camping
At a glance comparison – full reviews below the table
Bosenkitchen milk frother
An old favourite of ours. And the one we picked as our choice for the best to use to make bulletproof coffee. It rates highly again as one to take camping with you as it is such a powerful and reliable device.
It weighs in at a pleasing 100 grams so it’s definitely not a back-breaker. Importantly it’s surprisingly powerful and is more than up to the job of sorting out the campfire coffee.
It has a stainless steel whisk and is operated by a simple on / off switch. A quick rinse in water after use will clean it up nicely.
A nice touch with this frother is that the manufacturer includes two AA batteries. Others don’t do this.
This is an excellent milk frother to take with you on your next trek to the wilds. Light, powerful and robust this is perfect to keep in the kitchen when you’re at home.
Read our full Bonsenkitchen milk frother review.
Zulay Milk Boss
A perennial favourite and one that is massively popular on Amazon with over 80,000 reviews. This is a fantastic all-round milk frother. Every kitchen should have one. But, at 136 grams, it’s also light enough to take camping with you.
It’s a robust device so will withstand the rigours of camping better than some of it’s more flimsy counterparts.
The Milk Boss will create a nice rich creamy foam in 20 – 30 seconds. Simply hold it like a pen, pop the whisk head into the milk, press the on button and gently rotate the whisk. After half-a-minute you’ll have lovely foam.
Remember to turn off the device before removing it from the cup / container or you’ll have milk flying everywhere.
After use simply rinse in hot water to make sure the whisk is properly cleaned.
Read our full Zulay Milk Boss review.
Aerolatte Milk Frother
At under a tenner this is a good value for money device that will create a foam in around 20 seconds. The foam will have a nice texture and is more than adequate for the job.
Like all manufacturers Aerolatte claim their device is ‘ergonomic’. It’s certainly light and easy to hold. At just 60 grams and 21cm in length this frother won’t take up much space in your rucksack.
Not as robust as the two milk frothers we’ve already looked at but there can’t be any complaints about the cost.
Read our full Aerolatta milk frother review.
At just 45 grams this is the lightest of the frothers we’re looking at on this page. But despite its lack of beef this device really packs a punch.
It’s surprisingly powerful and it can be used for all sorts of things from frothing milk to whipping up a nice salad dressing. Though that may not be top of your priorities at the campsite.
Nevertheless, for frothy coffee this really does the job. It isn’t as robust as some and it won’t exactly have a long shelf life.
But for occasional camping trips it’s more than good enough. And you won’t find any better at its price point. Over 8,000 buyers on Amazon can’t be wrong.
Ikea Black Milk Frother
We’re definitely getting towards the disposable end of the market here but… Ikea is a great brand and they don’t give their name to tat.
Yes, this is incredibly cheap. No, it won’t stand up to continuous use.
But for occasional camping trips when you’re not too concerned if it gets knocked about this is ideal. And I tell you what – it does a decent job though because it’s less powerful than the Milk Boss or Bonsenkitchen and has a smaller whisk head the foam isn’t as thick. And takes longer to make.
It runs on two AA batteries though installing the things is a skill in itself. The Battery compartment seems to be too small and I had a a heck of a job with it. But I got there in the end. It does take longer to blitz the milk and your frothy coffee will be ready in about 40 seconds. Which isn’t too shabby when you’ve got all the time in the world on a camping trip.
It’s only around 20cm long and is light as a feather. Perfect for making frothy coffee when camping. This device is very cheap and if you have Prime the postage is free.
However, if you live near an Ikea store, or plan to visit one soon, you can purchase the frother for an even lower price than you’ll find online.
Read our full Ikea milk frother review.
DaoRier Milk Frother
We’ve now officially arrived at the cheap and cheerful end of town. At just over a couple of quid you know you’re shopping for a Lada not a Rolls Royce. But for camping trips and occasional use this should do the job.
The reviews on Amazon vary between absolutely raving about the product to completely ripping it apart. I think you basically roll the dice on whether you get a frother that works really well or you get a dud. But the balance of reviews is favourable.
The device is around 20cm long, very light and works on two AA batteries. It has a simple push switch on the side of the device to power on and off with the battery compartment on the end of the body. The whisk itself is stainless steel.
How to choose the best milk frother for your camping trip
Essentially it comes down to a choice between price and durability. The more expensive handheld milk frothers (still less than £15) are much more robust than the cheaper models. In fact, the Zulay Milk Boss comes with a lifetime guarantee.
But you may think it wiser to take a cheaper, more disposable frother camping with you. Like festival goers who take a cheap PAYG mobile phone instead of an £800 iPhone. It does make sense. With the best will in the world when you’re camping things get knocked about and damaged.
Because of the potential for damage one of the cheaper options from our list could be more appropriate rather than the Bosenkitchen and Milk Boss frothers we put at the top of the list.
You could then just keep the cheaper frother packed away with your tent. Don’t forget to remove the batteries before putting your milk frother in storage. Always test the batteries before setting off on a new adventure.
When thinking about whether to buy a milk frother don’t forget you can also use these devices as ordinary whisks so they can beat your eggs in the morning, make the coffee, stir the soup or perform any other ‘whisking’ duties you may have around the camp.
Handheld milk frothers are great value for money, very handy little gadgets to have. They’re light enough to pack away with the camping gear. Get one today as it’ll make a nice low-cost addition to your camping equipment.
More Buyer’s Guides
This article contains affiliate links. Please see our disclosure notice for further information.