The Best Gas Grill, Charcoal Grill, Smoker, Pellet, and Griddle Reviews
We all love fresh food off the grill. If you love barbecuing, no matter if it's smoking, searing, or Korean and Japanese hibachi-style grill cooking, we cover it all, ad-free! Join us as we explore the latest in pellet grill technology, the different types of charcoal you can use, including lump and briquettes and what's best. Infrared grills, electric smoker technology, and all the weird and wonderful products that can deliver amazing new ways to cook and enjoy BBQ. We talk about propane and natural gas grills, inbuilt grills and beautiful outdoor kitchens.
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Chargrills.com reviews the best BBQ grills, complete with articles, tips, and tricks. Join us as we talk about outdoor grilling, portable grills, tailgating, and summer fun. Nothing compliments a good time like some grilled food, except for maybe beer. We may just talk about beer at some point, too. (Beer butt chicken, anyone?)
Quick Guides and Tips
Competitive, Name-brand Alternatives to The Big Green Egg
Be sure to check out our 6500 word expose on the Kamado grill and oven market; in the meantime, here's a quick break down of what you need to know.
- Big Green Egg prices are high because they can only be bought from select dealers
- Major competitors include Char-Griller, Kamado Joe, Vision Grills, Primo, and Pit Boss
- Most come with stands (Big Green Egg "nests") and shelves at no additional price
- Some feature extra internal accessories for additional cooking space or smoking abilities
- Available with free shipping from Amazon, no tax in certain states
- Setup services also available
Kamado Grill Comparison Tool (Drag and Drop)
- Akorn Kamado Kooker Grill and Smoker by Char-GrillerAkorn Kamado Kooker Grill and Smoker by Char-Griller
- Pit Boss K22 KamadoPit Boss K22 Kamado
- Vision Grills Professional C-Series (Bundle)Vision Grills Professional C-Series (Bundle)
Big Green Egg Retail Price List - Not Available Online
Big Green Eggs prices do not include stands (nests), feet, shelves, or any other accessories. The prices are set by the manufacturer.
|Product Picture||Product Name||Price||Cooking Area||Grate Diameter||Weight|
|Big Green Egg XXL||$3,999||660 sq in||29 in||470 lbs|
|Big Green Egg XL||$1,199||452 sq in||24 in||219 lbs|
|Big Green Egg Large||$849||262 sq in||18.25 in||162 lbs|
|Big Green Egg Medium||$659||177 sq in||15 in||113 lbs|
|Big Green Egg Mini Max||$599||133 sq in||13 in||80 lbs|
|Big Green Egg Small||$559||133 sq in||13 in||90 lbs|
|Big Green Egg Mini||$399||79 sq in||10 in||36 lbs|
The Great Flame Wars
Every year the debate heats up again, with dozens of new articles on gas versus charcoal grills. In discussing the great flame wars, the argument goes something like: charcoal gives the food a more smokey taste; gas is much more convenient; charcoal doesn't last as long; gas grills are too expensive, and so on. While many people just tune out all the chatter, some folks really want to know which type of grill is better in general as well as for cooking different types of food.
Gas grills began surpassing charcoal grills in sales back in 1994, with gas grills now accounting for about 60 percent of all grill sales. To help you figure it all out, here are some of the reasons why some backyard cooks prefer one type of grill over the other:
Gas vs Charcoal Grills
● Prices starting at under $100.
● Superior for slow cooking.
● Ideal for smoking.
● Temperature range up to 1200 degrees Fahrenheit.
● Requires practice.
● Food needs constant attention.
● Takes about 30 minutes to reach cooking temperature.
● Requires regular cleaning and disposal of ash.
● Simple to set and maintain temperature.
● Takes just a few minutes to reach cooking temperature.
● Requires only occasionally cleaning.
● Can be expensive, with good grills costing over $300.
● Better for fast-cooking foods.
● Doesn’t trap smoke well.
● Limited cooking-temperature range of between 225 and 600 degrees Fahrenheit
Basic charcoal grills start under $100; one with all the bells and whistles will of course cost more. However, even the most expensive model will last for years with proper care. Because it has more parts, a gas grill will typically cost at least half again as much as a comparable charcoal grill. Charcoal wins on cost. Click here for a list of the best outdoor grills under 500 dollars.
Everything being equal, the flavor of fast-cooking foods, like burgers, chicken and steaks, cooked over charcoal is indistinguishable from the taste of foods cooked over gas. While one would imagine cooking over a solid fuel source, like charcoal, would produce a more smokey flavor, side-by-side taste test show this isn't the case. However, there is one caveat; using a staring fluid or a self-igniting charcoal will sometimes impart a chemical smell into the food. For this reason, you should use an electric charcoal starter or charcoal chimney when lighting charcoal. Because gas burns clean, with the only by-products of combustion being water vapor and carbon dioxide, there is nothing to impart flavor into food. On the other hand, charcoal produces a host of molecules that can add flavor to slow-cooked foods, like ribs and roasts, making charcoal superior for smoking. Charcoal has an edge on flavor. Be sure to check out our article on the USDA meat rating system for information about levels of meat quality you can buy from the grocery store.
Charcoal grills cook mostly by heat radiation, meaning heat moving through the air, where gas grills cook more through conduction, by the food coming into direct contact with grill bars. Closing the lid on a charcoal grill reduced oxygen flow, effectively suppressing the heat, where leaving the lid open maximizes oxygen flow, and heat. The exact opposite happens with a gas grill, as closing the lid doesn't affect the flame, but does prevent heat from escaping. This can make a huge difference when searing a piece of meat. However, the heat on a gas gill can be adjusted by turning the flame up or down.
Despite popular lore, searing does not seal the juices in meat, but does create a chemical reaction that enhances flavor. Known as the Maillard reaction, searing browns the surface of meats and creates rich, sweet and savory compounds. Searing also creates that satisfying crunchy crust. Most charcoal grills sear meat far better than most gas grills, as charcoal simply produces more direct infrared heat. However, a few gas grills, typically the high-priced models, have specialized sear burners for searing. The two main points to remember about temperature control are:
● Closing the lid on a charcoal grill will lower the heat.
● Closing the lid on a gas grill will raise the heat.
As a result, charcoal and gas score roughly even on temperature control.
Heat-Up and Cool-Down Times
This is where gas grills really shine, as charcoal grills take more time to heat up. Firing up a gas grill is as simple as turning on a gas kitchen range. This convenience is one of the big reason so many people are moving to gas, away from charcoal. Even when using a charcoal chimney, charcoal will take at least 30 minutes until you can cook. Also, once the coals are lit you only have a set amount of time to get the grilling done until the heat is gone, So, be sure your super-secret special sauce is ready before you light the fire. Also, when you are done cooking with gas you just turn the knob and the flames go out, but charcoal has to burn out. Gas wins on heat-up and cool-down times.
Like heat-up and cool-down, cleanup is a breeze with gas. The only thing that requires regular cleaning on a gas grill is the grease tray, that catches the meat drippings. The only other real cleaning on gas grills is the occasional scrubbing of the cooking grates, but this is needed with charcoal grills as well. Charcoal grills leave ash to clean up, and some charcoal grills must be emptied after every use. Gas wins on cleanup.
The final verdict on which is better, gas or charcoal, is up to the cook to decide. In the end, you should pick the type of grill that will give you the most utility and enjoyment. Clearly, there is something ritualistic, perhaps even primal, about taming the flames and cooking a big piece of meat over a live charcoal fire. While gas may never replace charcoal in the hearts of the traditionalists, the convenience of gas grills cannot be denied, especially if you are someone who enjoys grilling often.
Outdoor Pizza Ovens
Who doesn't like pizza? We all do! But who actually likes frozen pizza?
I gotta admit, I love pizza, but I grumble at the thought of buying those frozen, prepackaged frisbees at the store. The good news is, however, that home pizza making is on the rise. Maybe people look at Papa Murphy's and think it wouldn't be much of a stretch for them to go the extra mile and craft their own pizza 100% to their liking. Maybe it's the open-kitchen restaurants that show off their fancy pizza ovens for all to see. A pizza oven is definitely the right step towards a killer pizza that beats takeout, and handily beats frozen products - but what about a portable pizza oven? How cool would it be to go tailgating with a pizza oven? Pretty cool, if you ask me.
It's a good thing that there are others who think so, as well!
Best Damn Ribs Ever Bonus Content!
Wow, you made it all the way through the front page! Good for you! Here's my secret recipe for the best damn ribs you'll ever eat!
Pizzacraft PizzaQue PC6500 Outdoor Pizza Oven
- Revolutionary new way to cook pizza
- Pre-heats and is ready for cooking in 15 minutes
- Makes crisp oven-style pizzas in just 6 minutes
- Propane-fueled and portable for tailgating, camping or any adventure
- Made of steel and includes 14-inch cordierite pizza stone. Includes Adaptor Only for Use with 20 lb Propane Tank
Cuisinart CFGS-150 Folding Grill Stand
10 used from $ 32.94
- Fits Cuisinart Gas and Charcoal Grills including CGG-200, CGG-220, CCG-100, and the Alfrescamore Outdoor Pizza Oven (model CPO-600)
- Easily folds flat for trips to the beach, ballgame or campground
- Secure shelf location for 20 lb LP tank
- Durable, attractive steel construction
- Tool hooks included
Cuisinart CPO-640 Alfrescamore Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven with Stand, Black
- Combines the perfect pizza environment of a brick oven with the ease of a portable grill
- 15,000 BTUs work to cook pizzas in as little as 5 minutes, with high air temperatures for an even cooking surface
- Assembles in less than 10 minutes without use of tools
- Compact design and lightweight at under 40 lbs., with built in handles for even easier portability
- Includes 12" pizza peel, 13" cordierite stone, warming tray, integrated smoker cup and Cuisinart Pizza Making Guide
Bull Outdoor Large Pizza Oven
Large Pizza Oven
Bull Outdoor Large Pizza Oven and Cart
Large Pizza Oven and Cart
Bull Outdoor Extra Large Pizza Oven and Cart
Extra Large Pizza Oven and Cart
Bull Outdoor Extra Large Pizza Oven
Extra Large Pizza Oven
Cuisinart Alfrescamore Outdoor Pizza Oven
Alfrescamore Outdoor Pizza Oven
40 Grill Reviews and Counting!
Click more bbq grill reviews to see what else we've reviewed! We give you the skinny on the out of box experience, setup, and performance, as well as a host of pictures and a verdict. We even link to reviews on Amazon, so you don't have to take our word for it! Looking to shortcut the whole process and go straight to our recommendations? Check out our choices for the best gas grill and best charcoal grill of 2016! Looking for a quick list of affordable grills? We test the best grills under $500 so you can easily choose the one that's right for you.
Every month, we highlight some of our favorite grills. We're fans of Weber kettle, Dyna-Glo, Char-Griller, and other popular brands, but we enjoy finding gems in lesser-known categories like portable hibachi or Japanese-style grills, great for Korean barbecuing, and specialty grills that fold up and can fit in your back pack. Some grills stick out for quality, other for performance per dollar, and some are just plan awesome all around. Newer trends like the latest electric smoker or hot new Kamado style grill also pique our interest. Let us know what you think about these grills in the comment sections of each review.