Not every residence has access to a natural gas supply line: its availability depends on the location where you live. But if you’re lucky enough to have one, it’s worth considering a natural gas grill for your upcoming parties.
That being said, choosing the best natural gas grill is not as easy as you might think. How many burners do you need for a family of four? Are built-in models better than freestanding ones? These are just some of the many questions you need to clarify before making a final decision.
For grillers having a hard time making up their minds, our buying guide and product reviews are here to help.
How to Choose the Right Natural Gas Grill
If you can’t tell the difference between natural gas grills and propane ones, this article can help.
Here are some key pointers to notice if you want to find the appropriate grill.
Cooking Area & Burners
How many burners do you need? How much cooking space is enough? The answer may vary depending on the number of guests you entertain and the type of food you cook. But more often than not, natural gas grills are meant for large parties with lots of food and people.
A medium unit with two to three burners should be more than enough for five adults. Although 300 to 450 square inches may not sound like much, a typical family can still make do with it. Anything bigger than that would be quite unnecessary if you only cook simple items like burgers and hotdogs.
Meanwhile, a larger unit with four to six burners would be more appropriate for family reunions or neighborhood parties. With 500 to 800 square inches of surface, these grills can easily cook for 12 to 15 people. On top of that, the ample cooking chamber is perfect for thick items like briskets and ribs.
Some brands may sneak the warming rack into the overall stats for the grill’s cooking area. Therefore, try to keep an eye out for the actual measurements.
If possible, grillers should try to establish a clear budget plan and stick with it.
Cost-Saving Range: $300 to $500
There’s no need to overspend on a large grill if your menu revolves around small and simple items. With at least two burners providing 20,000 to 30,000 BTUs, these grills can handle kebabs and skewers effortlessly.
Save for the burners, there are barely any other stainless-steel components or extra features on these grills, if at all. That helps keep costs down so you can allocate your budget to something else.
Middle Range: $550 to $900
A natural gas grill within this price range typically has up to four primary burners and other secondary heating options. For example, some models may include side burners or infrared heaters, yielding 40,000 to 60,000 BTUs in total.
You can tell that the stainless steel body is a major upgrade from budget models, resulting in better overall craftsmanship. In addition to that, the grills also come with other conveniences to make cooking simpler for everyone.
Top-Tier Range: $1,000 to $1,500
If you’re aching to take the party up a notch, a premium model is the way to go. Grills in this price range are typically equipped with five to seven burners, providing 50,000 to 80,000 BTUs.
To boost heating efficiency, a series of metal plates distribute the heat throughout the entire grill. These shields also keep the burner tubes clean and clog-free, saving you from cleaning time.
With top-notch craftsmanship and multiple complementary features, these grills are built to last. Depending on the brand, the warranty coverage may span from ten years to lifetime with terms and conditions applied.
Cooking Grate Material
Stainless steel is durable thanks to its exceptional oxidation-resistant properties, making it the ultimate material for burners and grates. Although the material is resilient and easy to clean, it’s prone to discoloration from extreme temperatures. It may not look pretty, but it still works just fine.
Meanwhile, cast iron retains heat better than any other option, but its weight and tendency to rust are unavoidable downsides. The outer surface is often covered with oil or further reinforced with porcelain enamel. If you don’t mind the cleaning effort, it’s worth considering.
In the end, there’s no wrong answer with either type of grate: it all comes down to your preferences.
Unlike propane grills, natural gas grills aren’t intended for traveling, camping, or tailgate parties of any kind. When a natural gas grill is hooked up to its designated gas line, there’s little opportunity to move it elsewhere.
A freestanding grill is a great choice if you want to refurbish or renovate the backyard into a weekend hangout. You can store the entire thing inside the garage for the winter or if you don’t use it very often. And when you decide to relocate to a new house in the future, the grill also comes with you.
On the other hand, a built-in model isn’t going anywhere after you have installed it into the base. If you have a barbecue island or an outdoor kitchen, a built-in unit is likely the better choice.
So, should you choose a freestanding or built-in model? Your home layout and grilling location will be major determining factors. Remodeling the yard? Consider a built-in grill. Want to put it on the deck but don’t want to make big modifications? Try a freestanding model.
Many grills have additional features. They won’t change the way your food cooks or the quality of the end product, but sometimes they’re nice conveniences. Expect to see options like:
- Side tables and tool hooks
- Lid-mounted thermometer
- Cart or cabinet storage option
- Night light
Now that we’ve covered the selection process, let us move on to the in-depth review section.
Reviews of the Best Natural Gas Grills in 2021
With all of that discussed, we think you’re now more or less equipped to judge our best natural gas grill picks and determine whether they are suitable for you.
Keep in mind that these selected few are handpicked based on our research and personal criteria, so there’s a chance you won’t find your next grill here. But there’s one thing for sure: you’ll learn something.
- Weber Summit S-670 – Best To Buy In 2021
- Weber Spirit II E-310 – Best Value Natural Gas Grill
- Lion L90000 – Best Built-In Natural Gas Grill
- Weber Q3200 – Best Small Natural Gas Grill
- Char-Broil Signature – Best Infrared Natural Gas Grill
Here are our picks for the best natural gas grills.
1. Weber 7470001 Summit S-670 – Best to Buy in 2021
The Weber Summit S-670 is our first pick of the bunch for all the right reasons. You can tell this grill means serious business from the get-go, with its colossal build, immense heating, and other extras.
- Universal stainless steel build
- Generous cooking area
- Multiple heating options
- Rotisserie system and infrared burner
- Smoker box and side burner
- Thermometer and grill lights
- Side tables with tool hooks
Nothing but Real Estate
The primary grilling surface alone offers 624 square inches, which is already a compelling deal-sealer for many buyers. Plus, you’ll also get an additional 145 square inches from the warming rack. That’s 769 square inches in total, which should be ample for 12 adults, according to Weber.
Indeed, size matters, and so does substance.
Premium-grade stainless steel is the ultimate material for major components (burners, grates, heat tents, and lid.) Meanwhile, standard stainless steel— albeit with inferior quality but a fine alternative nonetheless— is applied for the grease tray, cabinet doors, and side tables.
The rest of the assembly includes a porcelainized steel cookbox, painted cast aluminum side caps, and regular steel body frame. Since these parts don’t directly alter the food quality, they’re understandably non-stainless steel.
Jam-Packed Heating Prowess
The six tube burners— each yields 10,000 BTUs on its own— handle the primary cooking tasks. Boasting 60,000 BTUs altogether is impressive on all counts, but the S-670 is further equipped with other secondary heating options, including:
- a sear station burner registering at 10,600 BTUs;
- a side burner boasting 12,000 BTUs;
- a low-power smoker box offering 6,800 BTUs; and
- a rear-mounted infrared burner with 10,600 BTUs for good measure.
Each additional burner specializes in a certain task and further diversifies the menu. While the searing burner gives steaks a caramelized texture, the smoker box offers pinkish smoke rings with an irresistible aroma. As you reheat cooked items on the side burner, you can spit-roast/rotisserie a chicken on the rear-mounted infrared burner.
An Abundance of Conveniences
Cooking prowess aside, the S-670 has more to offer with its wide array of additional features:
- a lid-mounted thermometer
- two side tables with tool hooks
- LED-lit control knobs
- handle light
- a cabinet for storage
The S-670 also sports a set of swivelable and lockable casters for easy movement. But you don’t get to shift the S-670 around too often or too far. Given the complicated setup of natural gas grills, they are to be permanently affixed to a designated spot. Save for heavy renovations or moving to a different home, the S-670 isn’t going anywhere.
Built to last, the S-670 is under a ten-year warranty— a no-brainer given its rather hefty price tag.
The Weber Summit S-670 is nothing short of a fine pick with top-notch craftsmanship and lots to offer. As such, it makes perfect sense when this grill ranks among the best gas grills to purchase this year.
2. Weber Spirit II E-310 – Best Value Natural Gas Grill
Weber has been a reliable brand name in the BBQ community for decades thanks to its well-rounded models. And the Spirit II E-310, a mid-tier natural gas grill with plenty to give, is no exception. While gas grills are often built for the money, you can settle for this model without splurging too much.
- Great price for value
- Ample cooking area
- Slender build
- Fold-down side tables with tool hooks
- Lid-mounted thermometer
- Compatible with iGrill 3 (sold separately)
- No secondary burner
Well-Built from Start to Finish
For starters, the primary grilling area provides 424 square inches, with the warming racks adding another 105 square inches. According to Weber, you can cook as many as 15 burgers with plenty of room to spare for sides and veggies.
Now moving on to the cooking grates. Although stainless steel grates would be more preferable, there’s nothing wrong with porcelain-enameled cast iron ones in any way whatsoever. As far as transfer efficiency and heat retention go, cast iron is on par with stainless steel if not better.
But when cleaning o’clock strikes, it’s an entirely different story. Cast iron grates require more care and maintenance than stainless steel ones, which can severely dampen your cooking mood.
You may think it’s okay to clean cast iron as you would with stainless steel, but it’s actually the opposite. While stainless steel is impervious to rust, the same property doesn’t apply to cast iron, which needs to remain moisture-free.
A Trio of Burners
Even without any additional heating option, the three burners should handle all cooking tasks just fine. And given the price, this is as good as it can realistically get.
On the highest setting, the triple burners combine for an output of 30,000 BTUs per hour. And unless you’re cooking something massive, this much heat should suffice for most barbecue staples like burgers and hotdogs.
The Finishing Touches
To further complement the entire assembly, Weber includes several add-on features, including two fold-down side tables with tool hooks. In addition, the cart provides maneuverability and some storage room as well.
The top thermometer helps monitor things inside the grill, so you can make timely adjustments without opening the lid too often. But the thing is, it doesn’t give an accurate reading for certain food, especially thick items with bones. If anything, an iGrill 3 smart thermometer would make a great tool if you smoke briskets or turkeys frequently.
The Weber Spirit II E-310 is a solid choice for aspiring grillers with little to no prior experience with barbecuing. Once you’ve built up enough experience and confidence, you can move on from this grill to something else without feeling guilty. But for the time being, let’s not cross that bridge until we get to it.
3. Lion Premium Grills 90823 – Best Built-In Natural Gas Grill
With its beautiful design and full-on commercial grade construction, the Lion L90000 hit the market with nothing but strong and quality characteristics. Judging by how people have been responding to its performance, it’s safe to say that they love it!
- Rotisserie system
- Rear burner
- Smoker box
- Stainless steel grates
- Stainless steel griddle
- Commercial grade construction
- Interior lighting
- No side burner
A BBQ Island Built for Parties
Let’s talk about its size first— the cut-out dimensions in particular. For the grill to settle in comfortably, it requires a vacancy of 38 ½ inches wide by 21 ½ inches deep by 9 ⅝ inches tall. The unit itself measures 40 inches wide (no side tables), 24.25 inches deep and 21.5 inches high, which is large but not TOO large for what is packed within.
There’s a difference between the cutout and the listed dimensions of the grill because only the bottom half needs to fit, not the entire unit.
A spacious cooking area is of course the first result. Able to accommodate up to 40 burgers at a time (measured with a regular burger press), the grill provides 802 square inches at the grates, or 1,030 square inches if we include the removable/adjustable warming rack. In the context of rotisserie cooking, that’s 2-3 whole chickens with space to spare.
From the outside, you can also see that there are a total of six knobs. Among which, five are primarily responsible for most of the grilling that happens on the rod grates. Together they make for an impressive 90,000 BTUs, which means 18,000 BTUs each. If you don’t already know, that’s quite generous as far as burning capacity goes.
The last dial is for the rear infrared burner that’s in charge of any type of spit-roasting. The rear burner is designed for that sole purpose, but you can use it however you see fit— a bit of supplemental heat on the rack, for example.
Moving on to material, it’s another highlight of the Lion L90000 Premium Gas Grill. More than 90% of the grill framing is commercial grade, 16-gauge 304 stainless steel, from the shroud to the grilling grid to the grease tray. Numerous owners praise its longevity, saying the grill still works like it’s day one after years of use with only minimum cleaning.
That’s also the reason why this grill is quite heavy (~200 lbs), even claimed by the manufacturer to be the heaviest of its specs. Keep that in mind and make sure that your station/counter is built to support that kind of weight.
As for included accessories, there’s a bunch of useful stuff: a stainless steel griddle (plus its remover) to help crank up the versatility of the grill, two interior lights to aid in after dark cooking, one mini smoker box for a touch of that alluring, smoked flavor; and a head cover for a bit of extra protection against the weather.
Basically, the Lion L90000 Premium Gas Grill has everything it needs to be the best built-in natural gas grill, and that’s not just the opinion of a few. Still not convinced? Then, how about a lifetime limited warranty to seal the deal?
4. Weber Q3200 – Best Small Natural Gas Grill
Most natural gas grills are gigantic models that need to be permanently installed or built into a fixed position, like a kitchen or a grill station. If you aren’t ready to commit to one as such or if you prefer something smaller, then perhaps it’s about time you considered getting the Weber Q3200.
- Lightweight & portable
- Side tables
- Built-in thermometer
- Tool hooks
- Comparably pricey
- Prone to flare-ups
- Flimsy side tables
- Limited space & burners
By itself, the Q3200 measures 50.2 inches wide by 21 inches deep by 43.5 inches tall. And even if you rest the grill on the cart, the entire assembly wouldn’t impose itself too much. If anything, you can put it within your patio or backyard just fine.
Let’s take a look inside. You’ll get 393 square inches from the primary grilling surface, with another 75 square inches from the warming racks. That totals 468 square inches altogether. Weber claims that this grill can feed up to six people, but we felt that estimation may be exaggerated.
Similar to other Weber grills, the grates are porcelain-enameled cast iron. But the lid and body are cast aluminum. At its current price, you’d expect it to be more well-built than that. The igniter uses four triple-A battery cells, to add.
To our surprise, the Q3200 preheats fast and distributes the heat uniformly throughout the grates, including the edges. Then again, the dual burners max out at 21,700 BTUs, which is fair enough for such a small grill.
And while the grill can cover a diverse menu, its limited heating range is unlikely to build up intense flames. If you’re expecting sear marks, chances are you’ll be disappointed, which is quite a shame.
Without the protection of heat tents, the two burners are fully exposed to all sorts of food dripping. One major safety concern is when grease droplets fall into the burner orifices, violent bursts of flames called flare-ups can catch grillers off-guard. One way to minimize this is to trim off the fat and properly oil the cooking surface before grilling.
The Little Extras
Additionally, there’s more to this grill. The glass-reinforced nylon cart is lightweight yet sturdy, which makes it easy for you to steer the grill around.
The two fold-down side tables may seem like a nice addition at first. That is until you realize they aren’t that sturdy and can support no more than a few seasoning and spice jars.
Other extras include some tool hooks, a lid-mounted thermometer, and a handle-mounted LED light for nighttime cooking. That said, they can only add so much value to the overall assembly.
In short, the Weber Q3200 is an okay-at-best natural gas grill, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a smaller grill that does its job as well as this one. While lacking firepower, this small gas grill is a perfect fit for grillers who are learning the fundamentals of barbecuing.
5. Char-Broil Signature TRU-Infrared 525 – Best Infrared Natural Gas Grill
There are two things that most owners love about the Char-Broil Signature TRU-Infrared 525. Firstly, they adopt infrared heat as the main heating method, which resembles the ambient heat of embers. And secondly, they’re convertible between liquid propane and natural gas.
- Ambient heat
- Reasonably affordable
- Cast iron cooking parts
- Low-tier materials
- Heats slowly
It has been surprisingly hard to find infrared grills. The market for them is admittedly quite limited. Since they burn slow like charcoal smoker/barbecue grills, they somewhat defeat the whole purpose of grilling. However, if you want to barbecue on a gas-fueled unit, this is the closest you’re going to get.
The current heating method of gas grills focuses on balanced but intense heat. Even if it’s indirect heat, the results simply can’t parallel with ambient cooking. But with an infrared burning base, you might just be able to create that medium-heated, slow-cooking box for barbecuing.
Of course, the Char-Broil TRU-Infrared can still grill, albeit not as immediately effective as the others on this list. With 32,000 BTUs from four main burners, the heat manages to cover the entire grate without any irregular cold spot. And for good measure, the side burner can provide another 13,000 BTUs on its own.
Ample Cooking Area
Straight off the bat, the primary cooking grate provides 525 square inches, which should suffice in most cases. And for good measure, the warming rack adds another 200 square inches, though you won’t have much opportunity to use it.
By the time the heat gets going, you’ll have gone deep into a grilling session without using the warming rack once. But it also depends on the situation you’re in, so it’s entirely your call whether or not to keep it.
Both the cooking grids and the rack are porcelain-enameled cast iron. It’s fine as a cooking material as we addressed earlier. But maintenance can be a pain as there are more DOs and DON’Ts with cast iron. That being said, as long as you know what you’re doing, you’re fine.
A little tip: heat the grill after cleaning to make sure there’s minimum moisture when it goes into storage. That reduces the risk of rusting greatly.
You can find all sorts of small conveniences across the entire assembly, including the lid-mounted thermometer and the two side tables. In addition, the cart provides extra maneuverability and storage area for the fuel container. That said, you’d hardly have room for anything else once the propane tank is in place.
Finally, this Char-Broil is convertible. By default, it runs on liquid propane. With a conversion kit (sold separately), it can switch to using natural gas fairly easily. When you do so, remember to be extra careful with the connections.
The Char-Broil Signature Tru-Infrared 525 isn’t the prototype natural gas grill you’re expecting, but it gets things done nonetheless. This simple grill makes a quick purchase that requires little commitment and you’d be hard-pressed to find anything better.
Top-rated Natural Gas Grills Comparison Chart
|Model||Main burners||Primary cooking area|
|Weber Summit S-670||9||769||10 years|
|Weber Spirit II E-310||3||529||10 years|
|Weber Q3200||2||468||5 years limited|
|Char-Broil Signature TRU-Infrared 525||4||525||Limited warranty|
There are lots of things to consider when finding the best natural gas grill on this huge market. But when you do manage to find the one that suits you most, it’ll be worth the trouble. Hopefully, with the help of our guide, the process will be simpler for everyone.