With a variety of grills on the market, you may be wondering “what type of grill should I get?” Each comes with their own pros and cons, so you’ll have to take your needs into consideration and choose the best fit for you.
Charcoal grills are one of the more popular types of grills thanks to their cost. If you’re on a budget, charcoal grills are cheaper than other options. If you’re looking for a smoky flavor without the use of a smoker, charcoal is the way to go. They are also simple to transport since they typically fold up to fit a smaller space. Pack the charcoal, grill, and lighter fluid and you’re ready to head off to a cookout. With a bit of patience, you can also work the coals up to a hotter temperature than most gas grills.
While transporting a charcoal grill is simple, cleanup is not. You need a plan in place for the coals that may remain hot for hours. Safely disposing of hot charcoal is important to remember when using a charcoal grill. Click here to learn how to put out a charcoal grill quickly. Remnants of the charcoal will be left on the grill until it is thoroughly cleaned, making it messy to take back home after use. Another drawback of charcoal is the lack of temperature control. Other types of grills offer knobs to control the temperature, but charcoal is stuck at whatever temperature the coals burn at.
Our Recommendation: Weber 741001 Original Kettle 22-Inch Charcoal Grill
Gas grills are easy to use. Knobs on the grill allow you to control each burner individually, so you can make a variety of food without over or undercooking. You can also turn the burners off when you’re done. Most gas grills recommend 30 minutes to heat up, but most are ready in just 15 so you can get started cooking sooner. You can enjoy up to 20 hours of cook time on a single tank of propane. With a gas grill, you don’t have the mess of ashes to clean up and grease is minimal, making it one of the easiest grills to clean.
The initial investment may be a turn off for some people. Gas grills tend to run with a decent price tag, usually running $200 and up. You’ll need to buy the tank along with the grill, which runs around $20. While the tank lasts quite a while, refills will cost about the same as the initial purchase price.
Our Recommendation: Char-Broil Classic 2-Burner Propane Gas Grill
If you’ve ever wanted to grill in your kitchen on a rainy day, electric grills are the way to go. They don’t produce smoke or use fire to cook, so they are safe to use even indoors. If you’re tight on time, electric grills heat up quickly, so you’ll be ready to cook in just a few minutes. With sizes varying from personal grills to larger, family style grills, there is an electric grill to fit your needs. They are easy to use and simply require the press of a button to begin using without needing gas or charcoal for fuel. Electric grills typically offer removable plates and parts, making them a breeze to clean.
The initial cost of an electric grill can be a hefty one, making it a major drawback. Since they don’t heat up to the temperatures gas or charcoal grills do, it may take longer to cook certain foods properly. With an electric grill, you also miss out on the grilled flavor that other grills offer.
Our Recommendation: George Foreman Indoor/Outdoor Electric Grill
Pellet grills are a relatively new market, but they’ve made a first impression among grill enthusiasts that’s sure to stick. Conveniently, pellet grills can work as a smoker and a grill in one, so you won’t have to buy both. Enjoy a slow smoked pork roast or grill up some chicken with one piece of equipment. With a pellet grill, you can enjoy food with a wood smoked flavor from the comfort of your own backyard. They also offer a quick heat up time so you won’t be waiting like you would for charcoal grills. Temperature controls mean you won’t have to check the food as often as you would with other grills.
As one of the more expensive grills on the market, pellet grills may not be feasible for some. A budget pellet grill can run around $350, with higher end models hitting the thousands. They don’t run on pellets alone. Most pellet grills require electricity too, making it inconvenient if you’re wanting to grill out somewhere other than home. Pellet grills often lack the temperature required for searing, so you won’t be able to sear a steak on them. Some companies offer a searing plate for an additional cost to help combat this downside.
Our Recommendation: Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill
What type of grill should I get? It’s a common question when in the market for a new grill. There are many options available, from charcoal to pellet grills and even smokers. Charcoal gives the authentic grilled taste but is messy to clean up and dispose of hot coals. Gas is simple to use and relatively inexpensive, but you’ll still be paying more than you would for a charcoal grill. Electric grills are ideal for those who want to grill indoors as they don’t smoke and rely only on electricity to run. Pellet grills are one of the most expensive grills available but offer a wood smoked taste many people love. Take your budget into consideration and shop around for the type of grill that best fits your needs when considering “what type of grill should I get.”