Best fire pits: our 9 hot buys, plus expert buying advice

Sit out late into the summer evening with one of the best fire pits, including smokeless, wood-burning and grilling options

Best fire pits lifestyle image of fire pit lit in garden
(Image credit: Amazon)

If your backyard is looking a little bland, adding one of the best fire pits is a great way of sprucing up your space. Not only will it enhance the look of your garden, but it'll also help you spend more time outside. You can sit around the fire pit late into the evening and enjoy the warm glow while toasting marshmallows and relaxing with friends and family. 

Lots of fire pits are also portable and come with table tops you can swap out for grill trays – perfect for when you're planning a camping trip. Beyond keeping warm and cooking food, the best fire pits have design features for an improved experience. Smokless fire pits are becoming the most popular with decreased mess and longer flame time. 

Shopping for a fire pit is a little less entertaining. There are important practicalities like size, fuel type, and safety to think about. And just like the best outdoor furniture, they can get quite expensive.

To help you find the focal point of your outside space, I've curated a selection of the best fire pits on the market. Using expert shopping advice and rigorous research into design features, customer reviews, and ratings, these are the top nine fire pits you'll find online. Including smokeless, wood-burning, and table-top options, there are fire pits fit for every need and budget.

Best fire pits 2023 

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I've split the best fire pits into the different types: smokeless, wood-burning, and table-top. This way you can shop by category and find the best fire pit for your needs. They're all best-sellers from established outdoor brands that have great reviews.

Best smokeless fire pits

Best fire pits lifestyle image of fire pit lit in garden

(Image credit: Amazon)

Smokeless fire pits are the most popular type of fire pit on the market at the moment. Safer, cleaner, and more portable, they're generally much easier to manage than traditional fire pit designs. Constructed of steel, usually, they're double-walled and have airholes for airflow. This allows for less smoke when burning. They generally have a flat base, rather than feet and will sit a few inches off the ground.

Best traditional fire pits

Best fire pits lifestyle image of fire pit lit in garden

(Image credit: Amazon)

Also known as wood-burning fire pits, traditional fire pits have a simple, fuss-free design that typically consists of a large cast iron or metal bowl with fit and a fire pick. They'll be coated in heat and weather-resistant paint and are known for lasting a lot longer than more advanced smokeless pits.  

Best fire pits for cooking

Best fire pits lifestyle image of fire pit lit in garden

(Image credit: Amazon)

If you're wanting a fire pit that does a little more than just keep you warm, there are table-top and grill-top fire pits that offer you a place to put your drink and dine. Bear in mind that these grill designs are typically more expensive than traditional or smokeless pits as they allow for a more elevated experience. 

Where to buy a fire pit

There are plenty of places where you can buy a fire pit, from online retailers such as Amazon and Wayfair to home stores such as Walmart and The Home Depot (all these links will take you to the stores' fire pits shopping page). 

Arguably the best place to buy a fire pit is Amazon, given their great selection and easy delivery. There are cheap to more luxurious fire pit types to choose from with everything from simple designs to fire pits with more advanced features. Most of the options on this list are from Amazon. 

How I chose these fire pits

While I'd have loved to have spent my workday testing fire pits and enjoying my time beneath the stars, this best fire pit guide has instead been curated using my shopping experience and research skills. 

We've tested plenty of outdoor products like the best grills and deep-dived into the best hot tubs you can buy, so we know what we're looking for. When choosing these fire pits, I looked into reviews and only selected those with top ratings. I've taken into account product specifications, including assembly, performance, design, and any additional accessories it comes with. Price was also an important consideration as fire pits can vary from $50 all the way into the thousands, depending on size, type, and style.

What to look for when buying a fire pit

The best fire pit for you will depend on your yard and your needs. If you have a small patio space you may need a fire pit with a slim design, or if you love to host and find your friends gathering in your garden often, then a large fire pit may be the best fit. As a general guideline, you should consider size, style, and features when it comes to choosing the best fire pit for you, and how much you're willing to spend. Liisa Matinvesi-Bassett, manager at PriceSpy, the price and product comparison service, explains 'Fire pits come in all different shapes and sizes these days - all with differing price points.' She suggests thinking about the following to help you decide which fire pit to go for:

Style or substance?
'Some brands are better known for their distinctive designs, whereas others have thought more about functionality. Are you looking for a fire pit to fit your aesthetic or one that has the best heating performance? 

Additional accessories
Some regulations in the US require you to have a lid for your fire pit if lighting it outside of your home. If you have children or pets, a lid is also a great way to ensure the safest fire possible. 'Lids can be useful for sheltering the fire from wind and are a quick way of extinguishing the fire once the evening ends.' adds Liisa. 

Do you want to be able to cook too?
Some fire pits double up as grills so you can cook food above the flames. 

 Liisa Matinvesi-Bassett author image pic
Liisa Matinvesi-Bassett

Liisa is the country manager for a fully impartial price and product comparison service, PriceSpy. She's passionate about guiding shoppers to the best purchase decision and is regularly quoted in media around the world with her expert insights and education around smart shopping.


What is the best type of fire pit for warmth?

While gas and propane fire pits are proving to be the most popular choice, thanks to their smokeless design, wood burning fire pits are usually the best for warmth. The type of wood you choose can alter the heat. Choosing dense woods like hickory and oak, for example, are known for producing bigger flames and higher thermal temperatures. 

What style of fire pit is the safest?

Safety should always be a first priority when it comes to fire pit design. The safest style fire pits are gas or propane pits. With a smaller flame, they're less likely to grow and can be controlled easily. Wood fire pits by comparison can grow out of control quickly, and if any accidental debris or flammable materials get caught in the flame, a fire could become dangerous. 

Fire pits with legs are also safer than ones without. You should never place a fire pit directly on grass or wood surfaces, instead, it should be raised or situated on fire-resistant surfaces like metal, brick, gravel or sand. Buying a fire pit with feet is an easy way of avoiding any safety issues with where you can place it. 

Having a fire pit is by no means necessary. But they are the perfect focal point for your outdoor space, creating an area to gather around with friends and family. There are lots of backyard fire pit ideas on where to position your pit and the furniture you want around it for the best garden design. 

Louise Oliphant
Ecommerce Editor

Louise is your eCommerce Editor and sleep specialist to help you wind down well. A connoisseur of the mattress world, Louise previously covered sleep and wellness (as well as the occasional organizational buy) at Real Homes, and has tried, tested, and reviewed some of the buys for your bedroom. With an MA in International Journalism and PR experience, Louise brings bags of bedding expertise and enjoys nothing more than helping readers find solutions and products that best suit their sleep needs.