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The Best Fire Starters for Fast Flames

three different fires being started by different fire starter products
Pine Mountain/Superior Trading Co./Weber

Sometimes it feels like lighting a fire takes master precision. You have to get the paper and sticks just right, light it in the right place, and then carefully begin stacking larger pieces of wood. Charcoal can be just as bad, and when you want a flame, it seems to only make it worse. For those of us who are not masters at starting fires, or even if you are and just want it a bit easier, we have gathered the best fire starters to help you get flames faster. Here are some great fire starters we recommend.

Purchasing Fire Starters

A fire starter should make it easier to ignite a fire, but not all fire starters are created equal. Carefully consider these key factors before purchasing:

  • Usage: Fire starters will have a broad range of usage, including fireplaces, fire pits, and grills. Others will have specific uses such as indoor fireplaces and charcoal grills. Make sure whichever firestarter you choose is ready to get the fire you need to be lit properly.
  • Flame: Fire starters generally start fast without needing anything other than a match or a lighter. When shopping for your perfect fire starter, understand how fast the flame will start, what materials it is compatible with, how long it will burn, and how many firestarters you may need to use to maintain the flames.
  • Smell: Not all firestarters will stink, but it’s best to know about it if one does emit a smell. Carefully consider the level of smell, especially if you will be using it indoors and if you or others are bothered by smells.
  • Survival: Not all fire starters are curated for travel or survival. Although most will work if you need a fire in a pinch and they have been kept dry, some fire starters are specially designed for almost every situation to make sure you always have a fire. If a survival situation is what you might find yourself in, or you just like to be ready, opt for a firestarter that is easy to light and transport, waterproof, and features a long burn time.
  • Flavor: Not to eat the starters, of course! If you are going to grill with the starter, make sure it will not change the flavor of the food.

Best Overall: Melt Candle Company Fire Starters BIG PACK

a box of Melt Candle Company fire starters
Melt Candle Company

Ideal for use with just about anything, including grills, campfires, fireplaces, fire pits, smokers, even wood and pellet stoves, these starters do not flare up and will not change the flavor of your food. Available in both rolls and squares, these started will instantaneously start and burn for up to ten minutes. They are also made of 100% environmentally friendly wood blend material and highly refined. These squares are great for taking on camping trips as they are compact and waterproof.

Best Overall

Melt Candle Company Fire Starter - Tumbleweeds Fire Starter Pack for Chimney, Grill Pit, Fireplace, Campfire, BBQ & Smoker - Water Resistant and Odourless - Camping Accessories

Waterproof and made of environmentally friendly material, these fire starters offer a no flare-up light and can be used in a range of situations.

Best Wrapped: Pine Mountain ExtremeStart Wrapped Fire Starters

a Pine Mountain ExtremeSmart wrapped firestarter
Pine Mountain

Designed to offer a clean burn with up to 80% less carbon monoxide, these lightweight and easy-to-store fire starters can easily and quickly ignite both wood and charcoal. They are wrapped for clean handling as well as easy transporting. Made to be compact, these starters can easily fit in a range of appliances, from grills and smokers to fireplaces and wood-burning stoves.

Best Wrapped

Pine Mountain ExtremeStart Wrapped Fire Starters, 24 Starts Firestarter Wood Fire Log for Campfire, Fireplace, Wood Stove, Fire Pit, Indoor and Outdoor Use

Wrapped for easy transport and handling, these starters offer a clean burn, and their compact size allows them to easily fit in a range of appliances.

Best All-Natural: Superior Trading Co. Light-A-Fire 100% All Natural Fire Starters

three small paper cups full of firestarter resembling sawdust
Superior Trading Co.

Offering a 15 to 20 minute burn time, these large fire starter pods are great for just about anything, from charcoal to the firepit to a wood and pellet stove. With no smell or smoke, they can be used both indoors and outdoors, and with such a long burn time, only one is required to start a fire. The starter is waterproof and leaves no taste or odor behind, making it ideal for cooking fires. The bag is resealable and waterproof, so you can start a fire wherever you travel.

Best Survival: QUICKSURVIVE All-Purpose Waterproof Fire Starters


a bag of QUICKSURVIVE firestarter

Designed for all-weather and 100% waterproof both in and outside of the package, these starters will even light if they are frozen. They are able to provide up to 750-degrees of heat for up to 10 minutes, making them great for a range of survival situations, campfires, even fire pits, charcoal grilling, and fireplaces. Equipped with a 30-year shelf life, they make a great gift for any survivalist or outdoor enthusiast and will not combust or light unless they are exposed to direct flame.

Best Survival

QuickLight by QUICKSURVIVE All-Purpose 100% Waterproof Fire Starters for Campfires, Fire Pit, Fireplace, Charcoal, & More All-Weather & Easy to Use a Non-Combustible and Safe Fire Starter (12PK)

Designed to light in just about any circumstance, these starters have a long shelf life and are great for both indoor and outdoor use.

Best Cubes: Weber Lighter Cubes

White compressed cubes of firestarter stacked by each other


These cubes are ideal for quick and easy lighting or charcoal briquettes. Offering fast lighting, they will even light when they are wet. These cubes are odorless, non-toxic, and provide an ash-free ignition, making them a great environmentally friendly option. With these convenient cubes, there will be no more smell or taste of lighter fluid (and no more lighter-fluid danger). They are designed to be used in any well-ventilated indoor or outdoor space — even a wood-burning fireplace.

Alesha Billie Alesha Billie
Alesha Billie is a momma to three kiddos (unless we count the furry ones) who has been writing and researching for over 15 years. After a start as a romance ghostwriter, she's written countless full-length novels in addition to articles, blog posts, advertorials, memoirs, and eBooks. Read Full Bio »
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