- 1 How to Choose the Best Outdoor Grill
- 2 Reviews of the Best Outdoor Grills in 2021
- 2.1 1. Char-Griller E3001 – Best to Buy in 2021
- 2.2 2. Weber 47510001 – Best Gas Outdoor Grills
- 2.3 3. Weber 55020001 – Best Electric Outdoor Grills
- 2.4 4. Coleman RoadTrip LXE – Best Small Outdoor Grills
- 2.5 5. Char-Broil Classic 360 – Best Propane Outdoor Grills
- 2.6 6. Char-Griller E1515 – Best Budget Outdoor Grills
- 2.7 7. Weber Original Kettle 741001 – Best Charcoal Outdoor Grills
- 3 Top-Rated Outdoor Grills Comparison
- 4 FAQs
- 5 Conclusion
Grilling in the open is a timeless tradition and a favorite pastime for many US families, and it will remain that way for the foreseeable future. Although grilling has come a long way and has evolved with newer and more convenient forms— including electric grills that can be used inside a house— outdoor grilling won’t go out of style any time soon.
In this article, we’ll show that outdoor grilling is on the rise. We’ll provide a buying guide, pick the best outdoor grills on the market, and do an in-depth review of each product. We’ll then address a few questions usually asked among grillers, and before wrapping the whole thing up, we’ll take a quick peek at some of the more prominent grills manufacturers and suppliers.
How to Choose the Best Outdoor Grill
To make the best-informed choice, we advise buyers to bear certain things in mind before opening their wallets.
Depending on which type of grill, brand, and size, an outdoor grill’s price tag can vary considerably. With a keen eye, a little patience, and a dash of seasonal luck, you can get yourself a good bargain. But if you want more features and convenience, you may need to spend more.
Charcoal grills are generally inexpensive: they can go from $80 all the way to $350 and north. These come in various sizes, so there’s always a model for everyone. Other factors affecting the final price could be attributed to easy-cleaning components, portability, and brands.
Likewise, gas grills have an abundance of size and price points. Most of them can go from $80 to around $500, while high-end gas grills can well exceed $2,500. These grills usually come with stainless steel components and casters for smooth movement.
As for electric grills, they can cost from $60 all the way up to $300. These grills are significantly smaller compared to their gas-fueled and coal-fed counterparts.
Other extra features— a lid-mounted thermometer, side tables, side burners, tool hooks, built-in cabinet, and whatnot— could also affect the grill’s final price.
We don’t know how many people you’re cooking for, so here’s a rule of thumb: it’s always a safe bet to go a size larger than your estimation. You’ll never want to run the risk of embarrassing yourself and your guests when they bring someone else along, and the grill is not big enough to accommodate food for everyone.
Most typical electric grills are suitable for a lone diner or a family with as many as five adults, although there are still bigger versions that can accommodate more, but no more than 10 people.
Charcoal and gas grills are more diverse in size and capacity, so there’s always a suitable product matching the grillers’ specific needs. If you’re an avid griller who cooks large items like briskets, or if you’re a regular host of neighborhood parties or family reunions with all the distant relatives, it would be wise to go for a big grill, preferably able to accommodate 15 to 20 adults. And vice versa, it wouldn’t make economic sense to buy such a grill such a large grill if you only cook for a few close acquaintances on big holidays.
If building an outdoor kitchen or BBQ island is on your mind (we’ll get to that part later down this article), you can go for gas grills with no side tables, since the extra space is more than sufficiently compensated.
In case you’re a traveler, get a propane grill or charcoal grill that is lightweight, compact, or at least has pull handle and all-terrain wheels. If you decide to rent an RV, then an electric grill would do fine too, but we advise you to get an extension cord just in case the power line isn’t long enough to plug in the socket.
Grill manufacturers sometimes use stainless steel since it is unaffected by the weather, it’s easy to work with and clean, but it makes the grill more expensive. A lower-cost alternative is coated steel, including painted, porcelain-enameled, and powder-coated steel. Those offer a budget-friendly alternative, but if the coating is damaged, the steel can rust. Aluminum is lightweight, rust-proof, and less expensive than stainless steel. It is often coated for an attractive appearance.
The grates can come from different materials, including cast iron (coated or not), plated steel, or stainless steel. If you have a specific preference, make sure to check the details carefully before buying.
4. Cleaning Ease
Cleaning charcoal grills means dealing with ash and soot gathered in the coal bed, but that can easily be dealt with using a vacuum cleaner once everything cools off. Our tip: use an ash rake to scoop out the residue, it usually comes with the grill as an accessory, or you can get one online easily.
As for gas grills, it takes more than just scrubbing the grates and wiping the exterior with a damp rag. There are times when you feel like the grill somewhat underperforms, with flickering yellow flames instead of constant and blue. That’s a tell-tale sign of a clogged burner, and it needs to be serviced thoroughly. If you keep using the grill, the grill will underperform to its promised capacity, and even decrease in overall longevity.
Get a gas grill with stainless steel heat tents, also known as burner shields or flavorizers by certain manufacturers. These plates will prevent droplets of grease and juice from entering the burners, saving a tremendous amount of cleaning hours of unclogging the burner tube with a toothpick. Also, if your grill comes with a grease tray, here’s our tip: cover it with a sheet of aluminum foil to save scraping effort when it’s cleaning time.
As for grate, it can be either stainless steel, cast iron, or coated steel. While stainless steel is easily washed with regular dish soap, the same cannot be said for cast iron. Cast iron is quick to rust if exposed to high moisture and humidity and requires meticulous preservation and storage. Meanwhile, coated steel grates either have a protective layer of porcelain-enamel or ceramic. which keep food from sticking. But that’s not to say the coatings are permanent, as they will eventually lose effect over time.
Since you’ll be grilling out in the open, the grill ought to be easy to move to different locations in case of weather-related issues like rain or strong wind. This is particularly true if you’re a frequent camper who grills in the open air. Look for portable, collapsible models, or ones that have all-terrain and 360-degree caster wheels for your convenience if you love outdoor camping or beach parties.
Flare-ups are sudden bursts of flame that can catch inexperienced grillers off guard. This phenomenon happens when grease and fat meet the naked flame, and is a recurring theme with charcoal grills. However, you can minimize this situation by first trimming off the fat on meat before grilling.
Gas-fueled grills are also subjected to flare-ups, but manufacturers often incorporate the burner shields to counter this problem. However, different safety concerns arise: gas leakage and explosion. Then again, this can be easily detected by performing a soapy water test.
Compared to the wood-fed and gas-fueled grills, electric grills are much safer and reassuring for users. They don’t incorporate combustible fuel, which means there’s no open flame. That said, these electric grills still generate steam and smoke when the food is cooking on the grate, but it’s a far cry from the acrid fumes coming from charcoal and gas grills. However, there are indoors-safe electric grills, in case you’re wondering.
Other factors you should check include insulation on the handles, lid, and the overall surface.
7. Extra Features
Grilling is a demanding task, and grillers need to make themselves as comfortable as possible. A few features that grillers should check out if they want to maximize the convenience and comfort during long cooks are:
- Side tables
- Tool hooks
- Built-in cabinetry
- Side burners
Reviews of the Best Outdoor Grills in 2021
If you’re a repeat buyer who simply needs to know which grill serves what purpose best, we’ve compiled the information you need. These are our carefully selected outdoor grills that give consistent gourmet results and make your cookout all the more enjoyable.
- Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro E3001 – Best to Buy in 2021
- Weber Spirit E-310 – Best Gas Outdoor Grills
- Weber Q2400 Outdoor Grill – Best Electric Outdoor Grills
- Coleman RoadTrip™ LXE – Best Small Outdoor Grills
- Char-Broil Classic 3-Burner – Best Propane Outdoor Grills
- Char-Griller Patio Pro 1515 – Best Budget Outdoor Grills
- Weber Original Kettle 741001 – Best Charcoal Outdoor Grills
Here are our picks for the Best Outdoor Grills.
1. Char-Griller E3001 – Best to Buy in 2021
We’ll start the party with the Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro E3001. Lauded by the barbecue community for its immense heating capability and the large interior, the Char-Griller E3001 is also available to purchase at a fair price tag, which earns even more thumbs-up from the buyers. And you’ll be surprised to know that it’s also one of the highly recommended grills to purchase for this year.
Combining 438 square inches from the main grilling area with an additional 192 square inches from the warming rack, the E3001 offers up to 630 of grilling surface. You can cook a lot of food at once, like a full-size turkey, several racks of ribs, or plenty of burger patties. As for its outer dimensions, the Grillin’ Pro E3001 measures 48 inches long by 28 inches deep by 48 inches tall.
The body and lid are heavy-duty tubular steel, which gives the E3001 a rugged look and a sense of sturdiness.
This grill can hold off against rust, daily wear-and-tear, and weather relatively well, thanks to the weather-shield paint job on the body. The grates are porcelain-coated cast iron, while the warming rack is chromed-plate steel.
For the burners, Char-Griller uses stainless steel for durability, which explains its five-year rust and burn-through warranty. The three burners boast a combined 40,800 BTUs. And if that isn’t impressive enough for you, the stainless steel side burner will provide another 12,000 BTUs on its own. So, it’s safe to say that this grill packs quite a lot of heat. And the E3001 also excels in smoking food, to boot.
It’s a great relief for grillers who don’t want to struggle with fire-starting because the E3001 has an electronic starting system for effortless ignition. We wish the assembly were also that easy, but that’s not the case with this grill. It has a lot of small parts that need to be installed in the correct order. Although there’s a pictorial instruction, it can be very time-consuming to assemble.
Above the three burners are three heat tents. They fend off grease and fat droplets from clogging the burners, saving you precious cleaning time. That said, you should inspect the burners every six months since clogged air paths equal decreased performance and efficiency. If you do need to clean the burners, apply heavy-duty cleaners thoroughly, as instructed by the manufacturer.
Char-Griller advises cleaning the grill after each cookout. The cast iron grates are unfit for household dishwashers, but you can hand wash them with relative ease. The same applies to the three heat tents, warming rack, and removable catch pan. The grease tray will temporarily hold the fat and juice until you can discard them when the party’s over.
The E3001 weighs 92 pounds, which is relatively lighter compared to other propane grills. And with the all-terrain wheels in the back, you can move this grill easily, even by yourself.
Although the wheels can traverse different surfaces, we felt the lack of 360° casters is sorely missed. You cannot go sideways or turn corners sharply with these wheels.
The E3001 incorporates standard safety features, including a cool-touch handle on the lid. As a precaution, we advise you to use gloves or mitts when cooking.
The Grillin’ Pro E3001 has an abundance of add-ons.
This grill comes with a shelf at the bottom for holding the gas tank in place, and a metal decorative shroud hides the tank from view for an aesthetic appearance.
What we really like about the E3001 is the lid-mounted temperature gauge. The stainless steel thermometer allows you to monitor the temperature inside the cooking chamber without opening the lid.
The side table will give you extra working space, which is always warmly welcomed by grillers. It feels nice when you can put food trays, condiments jars, and spice bottles on it. And if the fixed side table isn’t giving you enough space, you can close the side burner’s lid and use it as a table as well.
The side table features tool hooks, where you can hang your cooking utensils and towels. Everything is now within the griller’s reach.
If this propane grill is too small for you, then this Char-Griller Outlaw should probably pique your interest.
Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro E3001 truly is a well-made grill that can consistently perform with exceptional results. With this outdoor grill by your side, you can treat your friends to something timeless, yet still gratifying and satisfyingly delicious. The Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro E3001 may not be the most expensive or the top of its brand, but it over-delivers with its overall performance and features at a fair cost. And it’s not surprising to see more and more grillers hosting backyard parties on this grill.
2. Weber 47510001 – Best Gas Outdoor Grills
When a brand has high-quality products in abundance like Weber, it’s nearly impossible to pick just one particular grill. We present to you the Spirit series, one of their lines of quality natural gas grills, and the E-310 is a prime example of that line. It is a powerful, versatile gas grill that sets standards for other gas grills to follow.
The primary grilling surface provides 424 square inches of cooking space, with the warming rack offering an additional 105 inches, for a total 529 square inches inside the cooking chamber.
The E-310 measures 32 inches long by 52 inches wide by 63 inches tall with the lid open, and 24 inches long by 52 inches wide by 45.5 inches tall when the lid is closed.
The grates are porcelain-enameled cast iron and are under warranty for five years. The heat shields— dubbed “flavorizer bars” by Weber— are porcelain enameled steel. Similarly, the lid is porcelain enameled steel with cast aluminum end caps, and Weber provides a 10-year warranty on the lid.
Weber uses stainless steel for the trio of burners, control panel, and side tables, with the burners under warranty for 10 years. The cookbox is cast aluminum, while the cabinet door and the frame are painted steel.
To ignite, an electronic crossover ignition system will effortlessly light up the grill. And all it requires is a double-A battery. Once lit, the three burners can dole out 32,000 BTUs per hour. You can set the temperature at will with the infinite control valves on the panel. And since it’s connected to the gas line, rest assured that you won’t have to refill the fuel, and the grill will not lose any heat or flame out midway through a cooking session.
Grillers won’t have to fret about grease and juice entering the burners, because the flavorizer bars won’t let them. These bars will keep the burners clean, clog-free, and keep grillers safe from flare-ups.
So, where will the grease and fat go? There’s a grease tray with a catch pan built in the E-310, where they will hold all the liquid, so that you can discard later conveniently.
The grates, front grease tray, catch pan, and flavorizer bars are removable and can be hand washed with relative ease.
The E-310 is equipped with four 360° casters, so you can go sideways, turn corners, or swivel it across the patio, front lawn, or backyard easily. Once you’ve decided where to set up the grill station (we’ll get to that part further down), you can lock the wheels in place.
The flavorizer bars do a great job of preventing flare-ups. The shroud is large and will shut tightly to prevent any grease splashes. The lid handle is well insulated, so it doesn’t burn your hand.
The E-310 comes with two firm side tables, so you can use that extra working space to hold trays, condiments, and spices. The cabinet is beautifully designed to hide the gas line and components.
You don’t have to rest the dripping tools on the side tables and risk smearing them with sauces. Just hang the utensils on one of the six tool hooks where they will be within an arm’s reach.
The E-310 also comes with a built-in thermometer on top, so you can check the grill’s interior temperature without opening the lid and losing heat. And if you need to move the grill somewhere far away from the gas line, the included 10-foot gas hose will help you cover the distance, though you may want to get a longer hose.
The Spirit E-310 truly is a kitchen on wheels. A grill this well-made, regardless of its bulky look and hefty price tag, is a worthwhile investment for those craving a taste of BBQ cookout.
3. Weber 55020001 – Best Electric Outdoor Grills
We picked the Weber Q2400 for its compact design and reliable performance with consistency, albeit its rather high price compared to other electric grills.
The grilling surface offers 280 square inches, suitable for about three to four adult diners.
The Q2400 measures 25.1 inches long by 31.5 inches wide by 26 inches tall with the lid open, and 19.5 inches long by 31.5 inches wide by 14.5 inches tall when the lid is closed.
Like many Weber grills, the grate is porcelain enameled cast iron. To make the grill compact and easy to carry, Weber uses cast aluminum for the lid, body, and liners to retain heat better. The frame is glass-reinforced nylon.
This 120-volt, 1560-watt grill can heat up in minutes. When thoroughly warmed, you can dial the knob to your preferred temperature and start grilling.
Although this grill has several small pieces, the Q2400 is very easy to set up, and there is a picture guide in the manual if you have any trouble. The 6-foot power cable is not very long, but not too short either. You can place the grill basically anywhere outdoors, as long as there is an electrical socket nearby.
Although the Q2400 is not dishwasher-friendly, it is still easy to hand wash the parts. Weber suggests using a clean rag and soapy water to wipe the temperature knob, power cord, exterior casing, and the catch pan. If the grease persists, a scraper can be handy.
As for the grate, you should clean it when it’s still warm, preferably when you’ve just finished cooking. A steel bristle brush should be enough to scrub off all the gunk.
The Q2400 is very light and compact. It won’t take up too much space on any outdoor dining table or a garden kitchen counter.
The use of electricity means that there won’t be fumes from combustible fuels, but this grill still produces smoke and steam when the food is sizzling. Although it’s not a completely smoke-free grill, the Q2400 exhausts considerably much less smoke compared to a regular charcoal or gas grill.
The handles are well-insulated, so you don’t need oven mitts while carrying it from place to place. The base is also specially designed not to tip from any uneven countertops.
The Q2400 has no notable extra features.
The Weber Q2400 is an exceptional outdoor grill that heats up fast and cooks gourmet results with consistency. Although its cost may be higher than other electric grills, the Q2400 is a worthwhile investment if you’re willing to give it a chance.
4. Coleman RoadTrip LXE – Best Small Outdoor Grills
When you’re camping, the lighter and more portable the equipment, the better it is for you. That’s why we picked the Coleman RoadTrip LXE, a small, versatile grill that is perfectly suitable for traveling.
The RoadTrip LXE measures 285 square inches in cooking area. It can grill enough food for four travelers, and it’s one of our picks for the best portable grills.
The grate consists of two halves, and each half is porcelain-enamel cast iron. The thing is, you don’t have to stick to the default grate: you can opt for a full griddle, half griddle, or stove grate to diversify cooking options. But here’s the catch: you have to purchase these extras, since they don’t come packaged with the RoadTrip LXE.
The dual burners can deliver 20,000 BTUs of heating capacity, an impressive feat for such a little grill. You can easily adjust the temperature to your liking by turning the knob. Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about the flames being snuffed out, because the built-in Perfect Flow Pressure Control System will regulate and keep the temperature consistent and uninterrupted.
The Roadtrip LXE usually connects to a one-pound disposable propane cylinder. However, the grill can also connect to a 20-pound refillable propane tank, as long as it is securely attached to a high-pressure hose with an adapter.
The grates and grease tray are easy to hand wash with regular dish soap, although you can use a scraper on the grease tray if the grease and fat refuse to come off.
The burners should be inspected and cleaned every four to six months to prevent clogging.
The Roadtrip LXE truly is a blessing for outdoor enthusiasts. You can fold the LXE and pull along like a piece of carry-on luggage, and the pull handle gives a firm grip and a sense of convenience. As a collapsible model, the grill fits nicely in your car trunk or sits snugly among backpacks in the pack of your pickup truck. Rest assured that it won’t eat up your already jam-packed vehicle’s space.
Upon arriving at your destination, all you have to do is pop it open, set it up, and start grilling: step on the pull handle, lift the metal side handles until the grill expands. Then, lock the grill into a firm position, followed by extending the side tables. If done correctly, the setup wouldn’t even take a full minute.
And when it’s time to leave, the LXE folds back into a mini suitcase, which you can pull all the way to the parking lot, pack in the vehicle, and/or store virtually anywhere until the next cookout.
The RoadTrip LXE incorporates an easy-start ignition, dubbed the InstaStart system, for easy and effortless lighting. It removes the need for matches, so inexperienced grillers can let out a sigh of relief now that they don’t have to waste their valuable time starting the flames and can start cooking much faster.
Sadly, there are no burner shields, so this grill is subjected to regular flare-ups. But you can counter this by trimming off the fat before grilling.
The metallic handles on the sides can warm up during cooking, so you’ll want to use gloves or mitts.
The side tables add much needed working space and convenience for grillers when they are cooking, and you’ll need that space since there are no tool hooks. However, the tables are plastic so they may wobble and even break if you place too many heavy things on them.
The Coleman RoadTrip may not be big, but it gets the job done when you’re on the road. This grill is a must-have for tailgate parties, picnicking, and other outdoor gatherings.
5. Char-Broil Classic 360 – Best Propane Outdoor Grills
Propane gas grills are sometimes cheaper compared to their natural gas counterparts, and they perform similarly. So, if you’re hunting for a propane grill, we recommend the Char-Broil Classic Three-Burner. It’s an inexpensive, sizable, and surprisingly well-around grill.
Combining 360 square inches of primary grilling surface with an additional 170 square inches from the swing-away warming rack, you’ll have 530 square inches in total.
Char-Broil uses a variety of materials for the parts. The grate is porcelain-coated steel, and the side tables are painted steel. Meanwhile, the burners are stainless steel and backed up by a three-year warranty.
Built in the grill is a piezo ignition system that quickly starts the flames with a click of a button. And staying true to its name, the grill has three stainless steel in-line burners that can dole out 30,000 BTUs.
The grate can easily be hand washed with a brush soaked with baking soda and water, though you can use a non-abrasive scouring powder for stubborn stains. The other components can be wiped with a rag and regular dish soap.
Weighing 55.5 pounds, the grill is easy to move around. Although the all-terrain wheels can traverse across different surfaces, this grill can not turn corners abruptly or go sideways. In addition, the lack of wheel locks is concerning.
The grill has standard safety features, including a safety gas valve.
The two side tables offer extra working space and convenience to grillers. Another popular Char-Broil cousin in the grilling community is the Performance 300, in case you’re interested.
Not many propane outdoor grills are this powerful and consistent in producing gourmet results like the Char-Broil Classic 3-Burner, so you might want to hurry while stocks last.
6. Char-Griller E1515 – Best Budget Outdoor Grills
Let’s say that you’re having a bad case of the BBQ munchies, but you’re on the tighter end of the budget, and you have limited outdoor space. What do you do? The solution lies in the Patio Pro 1515, a charcoal grill that offers authentic barbecue flavors without bleeding you dry.
The Patio Pro 1515 measures 250 square inches in cooking surface. It’s not much compared to other charcoal grills, but it can still cook for a family of four.
The grate is uncoated cast iron, which will require meticulous cleaning and maintenance to prevent rusting.
The body and lid are powder-coated heavy-duty steel, which will hold out against rust, weather, and daily tear-and-wear.
The built-in ash pan is designed with grillers’ best interests at heart, because you can sift through the coal bed and dump the ash with ease. As for the unburnt chunks of coal, you can use a pair of heat-resistant tongs to remove them from the coal bed. Either discarding or keeping them for the next cookout is up to you.
The grate is tricky to clean, since it isn’t treated with any coating. Not only do you have to rinse it gently and dry it completely before storage, you ought to reseason the surface every once in a while.
Weighing only 50 pounds, the Patio Pro 1515 is easy to move, even by yourself. The all-terrain wheels, however, cannot turn corners sharply or go sideways. Another concern is that there are no wheel locks to prevent the grill from rolling if it’s bumped.
The wood handle on the lid is cool to the touch, so you won’t burn yourself if accidentally touched.
What we particularly liked about this grill is the side-access coal bed. This way, you won’t clumsily spill the burning coal over yourself.
The wooden side table is there to provide extra working space for the grillers. On the side of the coal bed access is the adjustable side air vent where you can increase or restrict the inflow of air into the cooking chamber.
The bottom rack provides extra storage room. The grill also comes with tool hooks to hang your utensils.
Finding an outdoor grill this functional for such a bargain is quite a rare feat. The Patio Pro 1515 will definitely give you a better bang for your buck, so if you don’t hurry, this grill won’t be available on the market for much longer.
7. Weber Original Kettle 741001 – Best Charcoal Outdoor Grills
Last but definitely not least, we’ll wrap up with another Weber gem: the Original Kettle 741001. It’s an inexpensive charcoal grill that’s easy to use, easy to clean, and still cooks reasonably well.
The grill measures 25 inches long by 22.5 inches wide by 39.5 inches tall. The grilling surface measures 22 inches in diameter, translating to 363 square inches inside the cooking chamber.
The cooking grate is plated steel, while the charcoal grate is heavy-duty steel. The bowl and lid are porcelain-enameled steel, while the ash catcher is aluminum. The damper on the lid will allow you to control the flow of air inside the coal bed.
The grate is easy to hand wash with regular dish soap, though you can use specialized cleaning agents for stubborn stains.
What we liked about this grill is the One-Touch cleaning system: as the charcoal and briquettes burn, fine ash and cinders can clog up the bottom of the grill. To prevent this, a door at the bottom of the grill drops them into a rust-resistant catch pan below. The One-Touch cleaning system is under warranty for five years.
The all-weather and all-terrain wheels allow you to move the grill around with ease, while the fixed leg will keep the grill from rolling away.
The lid handle has a heat shield that protects the grillers’ hands from the heat. The side handles are glass-reinforced nylon and are cool to the touch
The One-Touch cleaning system— while clearly a well-intentioned idea— is not very well thought-out. As the catch pan is open, a slight gust can scatter the hot ashes and cinder around, which could cause fire hazards and injuries for those around.
There’s a hook that allows the lid to hang on the side of the grill so you won’t have to search for a safe place to put it down. Although the lack of side tables is sorely missed, Weber makes up for it by offering the bottom rack for extra storage room.
In case you didn’t know, Weber also made a countertop version of this grill.
When it comes to BBQ, charcoal grills are second to none. Look no further than the Weber Original Kettle 741001 to help bring out that signature taste and aroma.
Top-Rated Outdoor Grills Comparison
|Model||Cooking Area (sq in)||Fuel Types||Extras||Warranty|
|Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro E3001||630||Propane||All-terrain wheels,|
|Weber Spirit E-310||529||Natural gas||Casters,|
|Weber Q2400||280||Electricity||---||Limited warranty|
|Coleman RoadTrip LXE||285||Liquid Propane||Casters, |
|Char-Broil Classic 3-Burner||530||Liquid Propane||Casters, |
|Char-Griller Patio Pro 1515||250||Charcoal / Briquettes||Casters, |
Rack under grill
|Weber Original Kettle 741001||363||Charcoal / Briquettes||Casters, |
Below are two— among other countless— burning questions among grillers when dealing with outdoor grilling. We don’t know which model of grill you have, so our answer will be in the broadest terms.
How to Clean an Outdoor Grill
After a scrumptious meal, no one likes doing the dishes, let alone scrubbing the greasy grill. And to make the cleaning duty more daunting, different grills require different cleaning methods.
Manufacturers usually have clear manuals on how to clean the grills, with notes, warnings, and step-by-step instructions. And although the detailed specifics vary between models, here are general guidelines for cleaning the grills.
For charcoal grills:
- Wait until the coals are completely extinguished. If time is of the essence, wait until the grill exterior is cool to touch, and wear heavy-duty gloves.
- Shake the coal bed, sift through the ash and cinder (if there’s a catcher on your grill, remove it and discard the contents).
- Use a pair of tongs to remove unburnt chunks of coal from the coal bed. You can either discard or keep them until the next cook fest. Make sure to completely douse the chunks in water if you are discarding them, or place them in a metal container, away from combustible materials, for later use.
- Scrub the cooking grate using dish soap and a brush.
For gas grills:
- Close off the fuel valve and burn off the remaining gas inside the grill
- Remove the grate, burner shields, and grease tray from the grill and scrub with a brush soaked with regular dish soap. Note that most gunk should come off the grate easily when it’s still warm.
- The exterior can be wiped with a clean rag and covered with a waterproof tarp.
Some tips when cleaning a gas grill:
- Use a grill brush or a rolled up ball of aluminum foil to scrape off the gunk and charred bits stuck on the grate. Watch out for loose bristles from brushes that can get caught in the grate bars, as they can cause internal bleeding if eaten.
- Don’t just scrape the grate surface: go between the bars to get at hidden debris.
For electric grills, some components are small enough and may be safe for a dishwasher, so check the manual for specific cleaning instructions. As for manual cleaning, a sponge and regular dish soap should suffice.
How to Build an Outdoor Grill Station?
For outdoor grills that don’t have side tables, it can be frustrating to find spots to place lids, condiments, and cooking utensils. So, why not build your own station where everything is within reach?
The size, style, and material are entirely up to your liking, but building a full-size station is a time-consuming, messy, and meticulous task, and it’s way above your regular DIY, so unless you absolutely know what you’re doing or have enough experience, we advise getting professional help.
If you don’t mind getting down and dirty (or you can find someone who is willing to), here’s how to build an outdoor grill station (at least the takeaways from this DIY video on YouTube).
- Be sure that your grill can function as a built-in unit. Otherwise, this whole process would be pointless.
- You’ll need a flat, solid, level base to start with, like concrete or pavers.
- You need a string line, hammer, chisel, square, and safety equipment.
- You will need to buy building blocks, wall caps, outdoor countertop pieces cut to fit your required size, and masonry adhesive. The amount of blocks required will vary depending on how wide the grill is, and how large you want the side tables to be.
- Before building, you should measure your grill and your proposed enclosure size. Keep in mind that the back wall should be low enough to allow the grill to open fully. A local store that sells the building blocks should be able to determine how many of each type of brick will be needed.
- To build the enclosure, you’ll simply be stacking the building blocks in a u-shaped pattern, to give you a back wall that is the width of your grill and a connected side table post on each side of the grill. The blocks interlock to create a sturdy structure with no mortar needed.
- Once the enclosure is built, the wall caps will be put in place along the back wall using masonry adhesive, and the countertop pieces will fit onto the side table posts. Then, all you need to do is slide the grill in place.
You can further complement the BBQ island by incorporating an outdoor fridge, cabinets, and a sink if you want to and if you can afford it.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and this case is no different. There are videos on YouTube that provide step-by-step instructions. You can consult different styles, material, and other features on video number one, video number two, and video number three, among countless others.
Our reviews of the best outdoor grills, along with the buying guide, are aimed at providing readers with insights, so that they can make the most informed choice for themselves. Hopefully our picks of outdoor grills will offer what grillers have come to expect.
If you have any tips, suggestions, or experience with any of the grills featured in this article, your comments are always appreciated.