Finding the best ultralight backpacking utensils can make or break your next wilderness adventure. The perfect utensil should be lightweight, durable, versatile, and packable – not always an easy combination to find.
Our guide helps you make the best decision by providing insights into these aspects, assisting you in choosing the perfect option that balances functionality and packability.
Let’s get started.
Weight: 0.3 ounces (9 grams)
✅ Great length
❌ Can bend
When every ounce counts, the Alpha Light Spork from Sea to Summit delivers. Weighing in at just 0.3 ounces, this ultra-lightweight utensil is a must-have for minimalist backpackers and thru-hikers.
Its sturdy, built-in tines are perfect for spearing hunks of food, while the broad spoon head scoops up sauces with ease.
Made of durable aluminum, the spork is corrosion resistant and able to withstand the rigors of the trail. The satin finish also makes cleaning a breeze after meals.
While a small fraction of users have reported very minor bending issues, proper care and handling prevents this.
For those focused on optimizing their pack weight, the Alpha Light Spork pulls its weight and then some.
Weight: 0.42 ounces (12 grams)
✅ High quality
❌ Can opener can be sharp
The ingeniously designed Scork from Vargo Outdoors is a must-have multitool for backpackers looking to cut weight. By combining a spoon, fork, and bottle opener into one lightweight titanium utensil, it eliminates the need for separate tools.
Weighing just 0.42 ounces, the Scork tucks neatly into your pack while still delivering durability. Its integrated bottle opener smoothly pops tops off cans and bottles, a handy feature when enjoying a cold one at camp. The spork tines are perfect for spearing slippery noodles or forking salad on the trail.
While the sharp edges require some care around little ones, the titanium construction means the Scork can withstand years of outdoor use. We highly recommend it for its intelligent design and reliable performance on the trail.
Weight: 0.44 ounces (12.5 grams)
❌ Can feel a bit flimsy
Made in China but designed in the USA, the Toaks Titanium spork is perfect for backpackers who want to cut weight.
The matte finish makes it easy to grip, even with slippery foods. The fork tines can spear chunks of food, while the shallow spoon bowl scrapes up sauces or scoops small bites. Some users, however, find the spoon bowl a bit too shallow for comfort.
While expensive, the Toaks spork is great for hardcore lightweight backpackers focused on trimming pack weight.
Weight: 0.56 ounces (16 grams)
✅ High quality
Blending the utility of a spoon and fork, the Snow Peak Foon is a unique solution for outdoor dining. Its patented design tackles both soupy stew and chunky stir-fry with aplomb. Durable titanium construction stands up to the rigors of backcountry use.
The distinct fork-like tines excel at twirling pasta or scooping rice, while still retaining a spoon-shaped tip for liquids. However, some users note the shallow bowl limits the volume of soup or water per draw.
For those looking to trim their kit, the Foon eliminates the need for a dedicated spoon or fork. We recommend it for its versatility and durability. Just be prepared for slightly smaller sip sizes.
Weight: 0.53 ounces (15 grams)
✅ Extremely affordable
❌ No premium feel
The humangear GoBites Uno offers a sustainable solution to disposable utensils for outdoor enthusiasts. Its combo spoon and fork design tackles everything from backcountry stews to campsite spaghetti. Sturdy nylon construction stands up to repeated use while the deep spoon bowl delivers ample scoop capacity.
The contoured handle provides a secure, comfortable grip. While effective at spearing food, the fork tines may seem overly sharp for some users. And the budget-friendly nylon lacks the refined finish of metal alternatives, but makes up for it in durability.
Despite a couple minor drawbacks, it remains a quality option. We recommend it as an affordable, ultralight utensil for conscious adventurers. The GoBites Uno gets the job done, one spoonful at a time.
When choosing backpacking utensils, sporks are a common choice. Other interesting options, such as the scork (spork + bottle opener) or foon (fork + spoon), are also possibilities. Ultimately, it should be your personal preference to decide which one suits you best.
Now for the fun stuff:
You’ll also need to pick either metal or plastic materials:
Many backpackers prefer metal utensils for their longevity, despite the slightly higher initial investment.
For further insights on ultralight backpacking utensils, you can explore our post here.
When selecting compact, portable utensils for backpacking trips and travel, it’s important to find an option that is both functional and lightweight. A collapsible spork or foon that combines essential knife, spoon, and fork functions into one portable piece can shave valuable ounces from a pack. Consider if extended trips or varied cooking necessitate a multi-piece set as well. Utensils made from durable yet compact metals like titanium and aluminum stand up to rigorous use while camping and cooking better than plastic alternatives, though they are more expensive. Choosing wisely equipped for expected meals and trip duration sets adventurers up with reliable utensils to enjoy portable cuisine wherever exciting excursions may lead.
When looking to minimize packing weight on backcountry trips, utensil material choice is important. While stainless steel utensils are very durable, their heft makes them too heavy for ultralight backpacking. Titanium is the best option as it is extremely strong yet lightweight. Although costing more initially, titanium utensils will stand up to years of hard use in the backcountry. Other viable choices are aluminum or hardened lexan plastic, providing decent robustness at a reduced ounce cost. No matter the material, lightness must be prioritized to enjoy meals with efficiency on the trail.
When choosing backpacking utensils, there are a few combo options to consider. A spork combines a spoon and fork into one compact tool, useful for eating meals from pouches. Meanwhile, a foon fuses a fork and spoon body. The primary difference is that a spork has distinct fork tines, while a foon’s longer utensil emerges spoon-like from the handle. This allows a foon to scoop and drink more easily than a spork. Generally, sporks are best for separated or grain-based items like ramen, while foons excel at eating mixed meals or oatmeal straight from the bag. Both shave precious ounces, so considering intended use helps choose between a spork or foon’s specialized functions in minimal bulk.