If you hear a friend bragging how they made the perfect burger on a grill in their kitchen, you might think that they are out of their mind. But that’s just what the electric grilling systems can do. If you don’t have the option to use charcoal or gas units, that doesn’t mean you should give up eating a perfectly-grilled steak. That is why we will focus on the best electric grills today and try to explain why you should consider purchasing them.
Let’s see how an electric BBQ unit works. At its core, it’s nothing else than a big metal heating plate that (usually) has a lid. The plate surface has ridges that are uniquely designed to remind and simulate the cooking grate you use in a charcoal or gas grill. Their source of power is electricity from any of the outlets around you.
We believe that this concept sounds pretty clear. If you are looking to purchase an electric grilling system, make sure to take a look at this article. We will start with the benefits of using these units and then move on to listing the best electric grills split across four different categories. We will cover various budgets and tastes. And if you are not sure which model is a good fit for you, make sure to read the buyer’s guide and all the features an electric BBQ should have.
Benefits of Using an Electric Grill
Before we dig into analyzing the best electric grills, let’s discuss why you should use one in the first place. The significant positive in comparison with gas or charcoal grills have to be convenience. First of all, there is no need to check the level of fuel in your propane tank or continuously watch over the coal bed. With electric grilling systems, you just need to plug the cord into the power outlet, and you are ready to go.
Starting the unit is also incredibly simple as the only thing you need to do is press a single button. From that moment on, everything is up to your grill. There is no need to ignite the fire or even wait for ten or fifteen minutes for the item to achieve the desired temperature. Electric BBQ systems will be ready for cooking in a couple of minutes. The convenience is also noticeable while grilling. There is no smoke, and there is no possibility of a flare-up occurring. Furthermore, the heat distribution is even across the entire cooking surface. You also have an adjustable thermostat, timers, and other perks that make the grilling process perfect even for beginners.
Despite all this, the deciding factor when people choose to look for an electric grill remains the possibility to use it indoors. The truth is that not all people have backyards or spacious balconies. Some of them live in a residential building or a condo, and they need to make sure that they comply with all the regulations. That makes it tricky if you are a grilling enthusiast, but it’s precisely why electric BBQ systems come in handy. They produce no fumes and therefore represent no risk of fire, and they don’t involve the use of any potentially harmful gases, which makes them ideal for indoor use.
Finally, you also can’t neglect the price factor. Gas grills are expensive and fueling them just adds to the expense. But an electric unit can be purchased at a very affordable price, and you don’t have to consider about spending extra money for fuel. You will increase your power bill a bit, but that would be a negligent change.
What Are the Best Electric Grills?
Before we start listing specific models, let us explain how we made the shortlist. We tried to cover all product types and include something for everyone. That is why we split the grilling systems into four categories. The first one is best electric grills for the money, where we didn’t even consider the price, but just the quality and attractiveness of a BBQ system. We also singled out the best portable electric grills, and we analyzed customer reviews to see what the existing users think about top-rated electric grills. Finally, we singled out several budget options in the best electric grills under $200 section.
Best Electric Grills for the Money
Let’s talk about premium models first. If you are ready to give some more cash to get a high-quality product that will last for years to come, pay attention to the grilling systems listed in this section. Kenyon Floridian All Seasons Electric Grill falls into the category of portable products, which makes it perfect for both indoor and outdoor. All the elements are made of stainless steel, which secures extended durability of the item. That also contributes to its elegant design, as well as the incredible heat retention. The BBQ is lightweight and easy to clean, considering that the lid and the grate can be placed in the dishwasher. On the downside, it could have had a bit more space on the cooking surface for the price of $930.
You can’t discuss best electric grills for the money without mentioning Weber, perhaps the best brand on the grilling market. Their Q2400 Electric Grill is currently on discount and can be purchased for $300 on Amazon. For that money, you will get a high-quality product with carefully chosen components and design. The cooking grates it comes with are of cast-iron and have a porcelain-enamel finish. In combination with the cast aluminum body and lid, that secures incredible heat retention and no cold or hot sports across the 280 square inches of the grilling area.
Have you heard of Wolfgang Puck? He is a professional chef that owns a restaurant in Beverly Hills. After serving the celebrity for years, he decided to launch his cookware line, which includes Wolfgang Puck Electric Reversible Grill. The trick is in the word reversible because you get both a grill and a griddle with this product. That makes it perfect for any time of the day, whether you are up for breakfast pancakes or juicy burgers for lunch. It has a compact design, adjustable heat setting, as well as a catch tray that collects all the grease drippings. It was made to be used indoors, although it does have heat-resistant handles that make moving it around easier. The only drawback is that it doesn’t have a lid – it is an open grill.
Top Rated Electric Grills
They say that nobody can appraise the quality of the product better than its existing consumers. That is why we are turning to customer reviews on Amazon, and we are letting the users tell us something about the top-rated electric grills on the market. Let’s start with Weber Q1400, which is a bit older (and cheaper) version of the model we presented in the previous section. It has 190 square inches of grilling space, and it comes entirely set up out of the packaging, which means that you don’t have to deal with assembling it. The customers loved that they could both cook steaks and roast vegetables on this grill with equally fantastic results. They also believe it is one of the best choices if you live in a residential building.
Just like Q1400, Presto 09020 Cool Touch Electric Grill received an average rating of over 4.5 stars on Amazon. It has to thank the 16-inch raised grilling area that does an excellent job of preparing fantastic food. It also prevents it to stick to the surface, and it is easy to clean thanks to the fact that the grease automatically goes into the catch pan. The manufacturer was considerate enough to include a spatula with a product. The users are thrilled with the incredible value they get for their money. The regular price is $60, but at this moment you can get it for less than $35 if you purchase it via Amazon. For that money, even if it lasts for only one season, it will be worth it!
Excelvan might not be a renowned manufacturer, but it’s on its way to becoming one thanks to their universal Excelvan Portable 1350W Electric Barbecue Grill. The users that gave it a shot are delighted with the fact that you can use it both indoors and outdoors. The product comes with an S-type trolley, which makes it ideal for moving it around your backyard. However, whenever you wish, you can always remove the cart, and it can serve as a regular tabletop grill. The cooking surface is enough to place 15 burgers at the same time. Two-thirds of the grill plate is a ribbed griddle, while the remaining space is a flat hot plate. That makes this product incredibly versatile and suitable for various food types. You can buy Excelvan Barbecue for $100, which sounds like a pretty good deal.
Best Portable Electric Grills
It wasn’t easy to make the right selection when it comes to the best portable electric grills out there. We had to make some tough choices, but we decided that we need to mention the Hamilton Beach 3-in-1 Grill/Griddle first. There are two reasons for that – affordable price and versatility. The universal product offers two reversible grids, as well as two separate grilling surfaces. You can adjust the temperature on each of them individually, but you can be them together in a dishwasher. It’s a shame that it doesn’t have more than 180 square inches of the cooking surface, but it seems that you can’t expect much more for under $40.
The next one is a bit more expensive, but it also boasts more power. Easy Street 9210 Portable Tabletop Electric Grill has a $90 price tag on Amazon, and for that money, you get the 1500-watt power that equally heats 164 square inches of the grilling area. We loved the satin black color which leaves an overall impression of elegance. They might not be durable as some other more expensive models, but the customers said that you would get two or three years out of this barbecue, which is more than enough for the cost.
It might be interesting to mention that the Easy Street brand is manufactured by MECO. That company also has their line of electric BBQs, including the MECO 2120 Portable Red Electric Grill. Choosing the red color for their product did not thrill the traditionalists, but the modern grilling enthusiasts will be glad to own a unique and attractive system. As for the product, it features 175 square inches of the grilling area, as well as interlocking bowl and hood and a wooden handle for swift management.
Best Electric Grills Under $200
The truth is that electric grilling systems don’t have to be expensive. In fact, you can purchase them at a low price. You wouldn’t believe that you can find some of the best electric grills under $200 or less. For example, take a look at the George Foreman 15-serving Silver Electric Grill. It’s perfect for both indoor and outdoor use and features 240 square inches of cooking space. That might not be much, but it will cover that tailgating party before the game. The grill also comes with a removable stand and five different heat settings. It is currently on discount on Amazon, and you can get it for less than $80.
DeLonghi BG24 Perfecto is another example of an excellent indoor grill. It is even cheaper than the previous model we suggested, and its price is around $50. Perfecto features a lid made of tempered glass which enables food to retain its tenderness while cooking. You will also get a pan that catches drippings during a grilling session making the cleanup easy.
We are moving on to the outdoor grills and let us remind you of an electric grill from a renowned manufacturer that might be perfect for your patio. Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Patio comes in four different colors, including blue, gloss black, graphite, and chocolate graphite. However, it’s the features that are the selling point of this model. The infrared technology prevents flare-ups and secures even cooking, while the cooking grates are porcelain-enameled to keep the food from sticking to the surface. If you have a small footprint patio, this model might be the perfect one for your needs.
MECO’s Easy Street Electric Cart Grill is the last one on our list of recommended products. It has three cooking positions that can secure cooking on direct and indirect heat at the same time. That way you can use the most out of its 200 square inches of grilling area. It also has temperature control and grease management system, and its dimensions make it suitable for patio, balcony, or deck. The model is available in classic and satin black.
Electric Grills Buyer’s Guide
You have seen the list of the best electric grills across several categories, but the question that remains is how to choose the perfect product for you? That is why you need to sit down and have a little chat with yourself. Analyze the situation and see what you expect of a grilling system. Here are several suggestions that you should consider:
Know the Rules of Your Community
If you live in a residential building or any other type of a community, you need to check the rules. Most of them do not allow the use of charcoal or gas grills, which is why people resort to electric BBQ systems. The majority of the communities allow both outdoor and indoor electric grilling systems, but you should make sure to check the rules just in case. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Which Type Do You Need?
As we already mentioned several times in the article, there are two primary types of electric grills – those meant to be used outside and those that you can use inside. Do you have a balcony that would be a perfect fit for a BBQ? Or maybe you wanted a tiny model that can be placed on your kitchen counter? Try to figure out where would be the spot for your grill and decide for the type accordingly.
How Will You Use It?
The best electric grills don’t necessarily have to be used for cooking burgers or steaks. In fact, some people are purchasing them to prepare sandwiches or vegetables. If that is the case, any lower-temperature unit should cover you. However, if you want to cook meat on your BBQ (which is the point, if you ask us), make sure to choose one that provides adequate power. If you ask us, it should be able to achieve a temperature of at least 600F.
How Many People does It need to Serve?
You can’t expect an electric grill to have an ample grilling area as most of them are not heavy or big products. However, there is also a considerable difference between 150 and 250 square inches of the cooking surface. If you are grilling for yourself only, the first option is more than enough. But if you are cooking for your family, a bit more space might speed up the process significantly.
Crucial Features to Consider
Aside from where and how you will use it, you also need to consider what features your desired product has. Let’s try and explain some of the traits that all the best electric grills have so that you can keep them in mind when selecting the one to purchase:
By default, electric grilling systems aren’t as powerful as their gas or charcoal counterparts. However, that doesn’t mean that they can’t provide excellent results and cook a juicy burger or steak. Make sure to look for a product that has a heating element of at least 1300W. That way you wouldn’t have to worry if it will achieve adequate temperature whenever you are cooking.
There is another significant advantage you get with a strong unit. At some point, you will have to open the lid to check if the meat is done. Whenever you do that, a portion of the heat will escape. It’s the power that will ensure that heat is recovered quickly and it’s the strength that enables the best electric grills to restore the desired temperature swiftly.
Adequate Heat Control
Although you want your grilling system to be able to show off its power when needed, you won’t require its maximum strength at all times. In fact, in some cases, you will want a lower temperature ideal to cook pancakes or make a small sandwich. That is why your desired unit should provide adequate heat control. The majority of electric grills have an adjustable thermostat that you can use for this purpose. You should look for those models that allow you to choose between at least three or five preset positions as that will increase the versatility of your grill.
While we are on the topic of heat control, make sure that the unit you select has a temperature gauge included. These are occasionally only indicators that will tell you when the grill has achieved the desired heat, but even they will make the cooking process a hell of a lot more comfortable, which is why you should make this a mandatory feature of your desired item.
The fact that you can clean it with minimal effort is also a trait of the best electric grills. Anyone who has dealt with cleaning a large BBQ will tell you what a pain in the “you know where” it can be. That is why you should look for models where you can remove the cooking grates (plates, griddle, etc.). Some models are also suitable for washing in the dishwasher, which means that you can just pop them in there and watch the machine do the magic.
Don’t throw this away as a non-important feature because it can contribute to the overall convenience of using the product. Best electric grills have a bunch of positives, but one of the drawbacks is the fact that they come with a cord. That is why you need to secure one of two things – closeness to the power unit or an adequate cable length. Otherwise, you will need to deal with extension cords which can ruin the visual appeal of the item.