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Soto Amicus Stove and Cookset Combo Review

Soto Amicus Stove and Cook Set Combo Review

The Soto Amicus Stove and Cook Set Combo is a lightweight and durable cooking system for backpacking adventures. Reasonably priced, the cook set comes with the Soto Amicus stove and a two-piece aluminum pot set with a 500 ml pot and a larger 1,000 ml pot. The smaller pot serves as a lid to the larger when cooking, but could also be a cup or a second cooking pot if needed. The entire set fits together nicely inside a mesh-carrying bag and the pots can easily contain the stove, a foldable spork, and an 8 oz fuel canister.

Specs at a Glance

  • Fuel type: Canister
  • Stove Piezo Igniter: Yes
  • Stove BTU: 10,210
  • Regulator: No
  • Boil time: 2 cups, 1:41
  • Pots included: 2
  • Pot Material: hard-anodized aluminum
  • Components:
    • Stove Weight: 79.4g (2.8 oz)
    • Small Pot: Volume – 500ml (16.9oz), Weight – 78g (3 oz)
    • Large Pot: Volume – 1,000ml (33.8oz), Weight – 120g (4.3 oz)

The Amicus Canister Stove

Soto makes great canister stoves and the Amicus ranks right up there. It’s a powerful stove that generates 10,210 BTUs, making it one of the hottest burning canister stoves available to backpackers today. The Amicus stove provided in this cookset has a piezo igniter for convenience, although you can also purchase a model without one. It has four pot supports that fold away compactly for storage and can be used with a wide array of small and medium-sized pots.

The Amicus Cookset Combo include two aluminum pots and the Amicus canister stove
The Amicus Cookset Combo includes two aluminum pots and the Amicus canister stove

The stove has a slightly recessed burner and a raised burner crown, which serves to protect the flame from wind (Soto was the first to engineer this capability.) This stove burns efficiently and it has not blown out on me when the conditions have been windy, though windy conditions can increase cooking times thus requiring more fuel.

I have used this stove in the high alpine, desert, and boreal forest environments; and the Soto Amicus stove has performed well in each of these situations. The stove is easy to light, and typically takes just one push of the Piezo igniter’s red button to start once the gas is on. Soto’s piezo igniters are head and shoulders above those included on MSR or Jetboil Stoves, in terms of reliability, but they are still susceptible to environmental wear and tear.

For example, in sandy desert conditions, I take care to keep the stove free from dust and sand. But it is always possible to light the stove with a bic lighter, hand-held sparker or a match. Soto provides reasonably priced igniter replacement kits and has a YouTube video demonstrating how to replace a faulty Piezo igniter if you do manage to wear one out.

The entire Cookset (black) packs up small for easy transport
The entire Cookset (black) packs up small for easy transport

The Amicus Cook Set

The two-pot cook set is the perfect size for a solo backpacker and the main, large pot, has a 1,000ml capacity, which means that you can technically boil four cups of water. In practice, I typically avoid filling the pot all the way up to the top to allow for better balance on the stove and a quicker boiling time. The stove brings two cups of water to a rapid, rolling boil in less than two minutes while boiling four cups can take nearly five minutes when the stove is turned up full blast; all times dependent on the conditions and the altitude, in this case, it was 1,000 feet. With a 3-minute boil, I am easily able to make enough hot water to hydrate a two-cup backpacker meal and make a hot drink to enjoy while I wait for dinner.

It is possible to use this cooking system between two people without significantly increasing the number of times you need to boil water. When backpacking with my wife, we generally boil water for a morning cup of coffee and then boil another pot for oatmeal or a packaged meal. On average, we boil water 2-3 times in the morning and the same at night and use about 8oz of fuel on a 4-day trip.

The small pot serves primarily as a lid when boiling water, but is useful for cooking and as a cup. I typically bring an insulated GSI Outdoors Infinity Backpacker Mug for eating and drinking, and just use the pots for boiling water to avoid having to scrub them out after a meal. The anodized coating on the aluminum pots are NOT non-stick, and care must be taken during cooking to avoid burning food to the bottom of the pot.

The pot handles are made of aluminum with a heat-resistant rubber coating that makes it possible to remove a hot pot from the stove and serve up boiling water or cooked food immediately. Always be sure to extend the handles before cooking or they will become too hot to touch once the water has reached a boil.

I can usually clean my pots with moss and rinse them out if I can avoid burning food on the bottom
I can usually clean my pots with moss and rinse them out if I can avoid burning food on the bottom

It is possible to cook meals (as opposed to boiling water to add to packaged backpacker meals) with this cooking system, and the Soto Amicus stove flame turns down quite low to approximate a simmer. That said it requires near constant stirring. If done well and with constant tending, a meal of spaghetti-O’s and meatballs is achievable with a minimum of food residue to clean up… but the devil is in the meatballs!

Recommendation

The Soto Amicus Cook Set Combo has proven to be a dependable and efficient addition to my backpacking kit. It always works; it is light and compact enough, and the price feels like a real deal. As one who used his previous stove and cook set for ten years, I’d say things are looking good for another decade of backpacking adventures with this setup.

About the Author

Erik Birkeland is an avid hiker with a backpacking problem, that is, he just can’t seem to get enough. Living in Duluth, Minnesota with the Superior Hiking Trail just outside his backdoor, daily hikes and weekend treks fill his free time while he contemplates the next big adventure. He has completed numerous backpacking trips into such diverse landscapes as Escalante, the Wind River Range, the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, the BWCA, Isle Royale National Park, and even Iceland. While he hasn’t gone the farthest, fastest, nor the ultra-lightest; he does aspire to establish as many trekking BKTs (best known times) as possible - meeting the wilderness as it is, by simply getting out there.

Disclosure: The author own this product.

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7 comments

  1. I used this cookset and stove in Scotland over the past two weeks and loved it. It packs up small and can hold a 230g gas canister making packing very compact. The stove is superfast and hot. And it’s super convenient to be able to boil a big pot of water in the big pot and pour or eat smaller portions in the cooler and smaller pot. My MSR Windburner didn’t work with the Primus gas canisters they have over there, so I had to replace it fast, and this proved to be a very economical and high value solution!

  2. It looks kind of similar to the old Brunton IB Cookset. But the Brunton had a lid that fit either pot and could be used a double boiler if needed. I have had it quite a while and still use it a few times every year. Does the 1L pot fit in the smaller pot? Thanks for the review.

    • No, they don’t fit together like that, unfortunately. I was using it in the BWCA last weekend and tried to use it as a double boiler to heat up gravy for my mashed potatoes and the pots got stuck together. That would be a nice improvement.

  3. I got the Amicus about three years ago, after reading Hikin’ Jim’s review, and it replaced my Optimus forever. It uses far less fuel on long trips and worked flawlessly. We purchased three of the cook kits for our Scouts in 2017, and they’ve been using them without issue (or maintenance) since then.

    • Yeah, I’ve been using the stove for a few years now and aside from a bit of desert sand impacting the effectiveness of the piezo ignitor (which I was able to clean out rather easily), the stove has worked flawlessly. It is indeed a fuel miser.

  4. My 10 year old Snow Peak Ti set is able to fit the Stove with the Canister inside the Pot and I have room left over in the Lid/Cup/Top to store a small bottle of Camp Suds, Matches, and a Bandana.. Would I be able to do the same with this Set???? and yes 25 years ago I made up the word Nobocan….

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