How to Make and Use "Candle Cup" Fire Starters (Portable Kindling)

By Alan Silverstein,
Last update: January 23, 2018


What Are They?

One finished candle cup

How Do I Make Them? (briefly)

How Again Do I Make Them? (valuable details for best results)

What follows is a lot to learn. But if you incorporate all of this advice based on my own experience, making candle cups is still pretty fun and easy, plus you'll get the best possible results.



My friend Jean Bendon, a retired professional candle maker, told me about these devices, but says the name "candle cups" comes from Yankee Candle. Also to my surprise apparently sometimes she did/does use wood chips in her candle cups. Here are a couple of pictures she sent me:


My first posting about candle cups, to rec.backcountry, was in July 1993.

My article about them ran in the Colorado Mountain Club magazine, Trail and Timberline, in Jan 1995.

I made batches of candle cups in at least: Jan 1994, Jan 2005, Oct 2014 (226), and Jan 2018 (62).