Best Small Grills for the Money
If the price is not your primary concern and you want to get a high-quality product that will last for years, you need to take a look at Weber. This manufacturer is offering some of the best small grills for the money on the market. For example, take a look at the Weber Q3200 grilling system. Each component of the product was made with utmost care, and the result is impressive.
The grilling surface of Q3200 spreads to 393 square inches. That means you can make food for up to six people at one without any issues. The body and the lid are made of cast aluminum, which increases the resistance to severe weather conditions. If you take this unit camping and it starts raining, there is no need to worry that it will damage the product.
Once you open the lid, you notice the top quality grates made of cast iron. Experts are saying this is the best material for grates because it prevents food from sticking to the surface. On top of that, it is incredibly durable and easy to clean. And while we are on the topic of cleaning, Q3200 also comes with a catch pan that will collect all the grease and make the process of getting the unit cleaned up a piece of cake.
If you are a grilling newbie, don’t worry. This model is equipped with an integrated thermometer that will show you the temperature inside the cook box at any point of barbecuing. The side tables that are both foldable and removable are useful because you don’t have to juggle plates and tools in your hands. The open cart design also packs a bottom shelf to store the stuff you are not using at the moment. And you shouldn’t worry about transport. Packing the cart takes less than a minute and, once it is in a box, the unit can fit inside the trunk of your car. It might be a bit heavier than small, lightweight grills, but there is a reason for that. Q3200 offers remarkable quality and presents a long-term investment.
You can choose between liquid propane and natural gas options when it comes to fueling Q3200. However, if you are planning to move it around your backyard or taking it to travels, the propane option is the right choice because it is fueled by gas tanks.
Top Rated Small Grills
I learned one thing when it comes to barbecues – you shouldn’t listen to just only one person. The preferences and tastes may vary and what suits me may not be appropriate for you. However, there are units that everyone agrees are fantastic. And if thousands of users commend the BBQ system, why would you doubt that it is excellent for your needs, too?
Let’s talk about Weber Smokey Joe 14-Inch Portable Grill. Regardless of the online store you are visiting, you will find that it is among the best rated small grills available. The unit weighs less than ten pounds, which makes it an ideal traveling companion for all your needs. However, even if you are at home, this BBQ can serve up to four members of your family at once.
Weber Smokey Joe has a classic kettle design with a cook box that has a diameter of 14 inches. If you think that is not big enough for you, there is an 18-inch alternative also available. Regardless of the choice you make, you will encounter a grated triple-plated with nickel for better performance and endurance. The coating of the lid is also phenomenal and resistant to fading and rust thanks to the porcelain coating.
Smokey Joe 14-Inch uses charcoal as fuel. While you are grilling, you can easily check the doneness of the food by removing the lid. There is no need to worry that you will need a glove or any other protection. The handle is reinforced with glass which enables it to stay cool to the touch at all times.
In the end, we can’t underestimate the fact that Smokey Joe comes at an affordable price. Add to that the fact that you get a 10-year warranty on the product and it is clear why the customers are considering one of the best investments on the market.
Best Portable Small Grills
As someone who is a grilling enthusiast for years now, I have found a sweet spot for tabletop portable grills. The reason why I appreciate them more than units with stands is that they tend to come pre-assembled. Not only I don’t have to spend time figuring out how to set up the stand, but I also know that I can quickly pack them back into the box and take them wherever I am headed.
That is why this article will recommend Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet as one of the best portable small grills of today. It is available in three different colors, which means that you will surely find one you like. As for the performance, it offers 145 square inches of cooking surface. That should be enough for about three people at once, which makes it suitable for a family camping trip or a day at the beach.
Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet runs on gas. It has only one burner, but it packs 5,500 BTUs of power, which is enough to provide a stable heating source for the grate. The grate itself is of steel, but it has porcelain coating to prevent food sticking and improve durability.
The unit weighs around 10 pounds, and it is perfect for carrying around thanks to the handle that resembles the one you can find on briefcases. It is also important to mention that this tabletop grill can be placed on any flat surfaces. The legs provide the required stability, but they are also foldable. That makes the transport even more comfortable than you can imagine. Just fold the legs away, pack the unit into the box and enjoy the benefits of space saving that come with a small portable grill. If you do prefer using a stand for your BBQ, Cuisinart made one, especially for this unit. We recommend using the stand in your backyard, while the tabletop option can be utilized when you are away from home.
Best Small Grills Under $200
The truth is that compact-sized grilling systems shouldn’t be pricey. However, if you are looking for bargain deals and units that won’t have you paying another cent extra then it is needed, take a look at the best small grills under $200. If you ask me, an excellent choice is the Char-Broil Standard Portable Liquid Propane Gas Grill.
You probably heard about this brand as they have been on the grilling market for decades. Char-Broil Standard uses liquid propane tanks as fuel, which makes them suitable for newbies and those who don’t want to get their hands dirty with coal. The unit comes with 187 square inches of the available cooking surface. The grates are plated with chrome, and you can wash them in the dishwasher. That is incredibly important for those who are looking for the cleaning process to require no hassle at all.
You could say that this is a classic tabletop unit. It weighs just below 12 pounds, and it comes with foldable legs. In fact, you fold the legs in a way that they lock the lid into place to make the transport effortless. Aside from that, you also have a handle that you use to carry the unit around. It is resistant to heat which means that there is no need to wait for the BBQ to cool down. As soon as you finish using it, you can store it away so that it doesn’t disrupt the aesthetics of the environment.
But that doesn’t mean the Char-Broil Standard Portable LP Grill is ugly. On the contrary, it has an attractive black color. The construction is made of steel and the burner packs whopping 11,000 BTUs of power. Considering the affordable price, it seems only fair to warn you that you shouldn’t expect the product to last for years. However, getting a year or two out of it at the given price is still an excellent deal.
Why Choose a Small Grill?
You are probably reading this because you are considering buying a small grill. However, you might still be having dilemmas whether they are the best option. After all, there are hundreds of models of all sizes on the market. So, how can you be sure that you’ve made the right decision? Let’s take a look at these reasons why you should choose a small BBQ:
It’s only natural – small-sized grills won’t take as much space as their bigger alternatives. This is perfect for all people who have limited space on their patios or in backyards. There are also electric variants of compact barbecues that you can use indoors, and they can fit on the kitchen counter. I am sure you can’t tell me a massive BBQ that you can place in your home.
When it comes to outdoors, finding a location to place the item in your backyard is effortless because it can be put anywhere. It just needs a small portion of space, and you are ready to work some magic on your grill. Another considerable advantage is storing the unit. Once you are done with grilling, you can easily pack it up and store it away in your garage or any other spot. It won’t take away the unnecessary space when you are not using it. That also means it won’t disrupt the overall aesthetics of your yard, which is also essential to some people.
Take It Wherever You Go
You can use small grills on your premises, but you can also take them with you wherever you are headed. That includes a variety of options. If you are heading on a trip with your RV trailer – no problem! Just pack the BBQ and take it out of the box whenever you feel like having lunch. Are you looking for a perfect grilling option when going camping? In that case, the best choice is buying a compact-sized BBQ unit that can easily fit into your car trunk. It won’t take a lot of space, and it can automatically free up the room for other things that you need, such as tent and blankets.
You can also take these grilling systems to a tailgating party or as a tool for making lunch when you are spending a day at the beach. Virtually, the only limit is your creativity as small grills are the ideal traveling companion regardless of your destination.
Ideal for Small Families
While you may not be able to host a party for the entire neighborhood, compact grilling systems are an ideal choice for you and your family. If you want to find a product that will serve the needs of you, your partner, and a couple of kids, you will discover that most small grills are more than capable of providing for a party of four (in some cases even six) people.
That way you can also spend some quality family time together. Just imagine gathering around the barbecue and sharing laughs during a beautiful afternoon together.
Fits into Every Budget
It is only logical that small grills are not as expensive as large units. Of course, there are differences in the price when it comes to brand, performance, and quality of the components. However, the critical thing to keep in mind that anyone can find a compact BBQ system that fits their budget. If you are not looking to splash the cash on a product that you will only occasionally use or if you are a beginner learning their way around barbecues, it might be a good idea not to spend a lot of money on your first grilling system. Choosing a small grill will not have you worry about how to pay for it and whether you have to save for months to buy it.
How to Choose the Right Small Grill?
Now that you are aware of the best small grills on the market at the moment, there is still one question left unanswered. If you are wondering how to choose the right model for you (beyond the price issue), here are several factors that you need to consider.
Pick the Right Fuel Type
In general, this depends on two things – your skills and preference. Small grills can be fueled by various types of fuel, including charcoal, gas, and electricity. Let’s take a look at what you can expect from each of these:
- Charcoal – the traditionalists believe that coal provides the authentic BBQ flavor to grilled food. However, it does take a bit of effort to get the fire going, and you need to monitor the coals at all times, as well as the grilling surface because it can get too hot. Since there is a possibility of flare-ups occurring, charcoal is not a recommended choice for someone who doesn’t have any experience with grilling. However, if you are willing to get your hands dirty and eager to clean up the mess, the effort will be rewarded with incredibly tasty food.
- Gas – this option is far more suitable for beginners than charcoal. Aside from that, gas is the choice of those who are in favor of modern technology. Unlike coal units, gas-fueled grills won’t leave any mess, and they only require minimal effort when it comes to cleaning. In most cases, getting the fire going is also a piece of cake, which means you will grill your food quickly. You can choose between liquid propane and natural gas. The latter one might be cheaper if you have a line going through your home, but you intend to take your grill on a trip, you should also have the option to use LP tank to fuel your unit.
- Electricity – modern technology also brought us small electric Their obvious downside is that you can only use them in locations where you have electricity at your disposal. That means you can utilize them on your patios and inside your home. That is the most significant advantage of electric grilling systems – the fact that you can use them indoors. They don’t use an open flame, which makes them compliant with most of the community regulations. However, keep in mind that you won’t get that authentic barbecue flavor with your food.
Do You Want Tabletop or Stand/Cart?
The next thing you have to decide is whether you want a tabletop unit or the one that comes with a stand or cart. The general rule is that tabletop grills are easier for transport since you can pack them quickly, which increases their portability. However, keep in mind that you will need a flat surface to place your grilling unit before you start the cooking process.
When it comes to a stand or cart design, these might come in handy if you are a tall person. It might sound weird, but if you place a grill on a stand, it will be higher than when placed on a table. That will make it easier for you to grill and you will avoid hurting your back. Some carts and stands come with wheels to make the unit portable and suitable for moving around.
Finally, keep in mind that there are grilling systems that offer both a tabletop option and a stand. That means you can use them on the cart when cooking in your backyard and then utilize the foldable tabletop legs when you are on the go. Just keep in mind one thing, in some cases, you might need to pay extra for the stand.
Pay Attention to the Cooking Surface
Let’s clear up one thing – you can’t expect a broad cooking surface from a small grill. It’s just the way things work. However, even small BBQ units have differences when it comes to the size of the grilling area. The general rule is that you need about 60 inches of space to serve one person. Compact-sized barbecue systems can offer up to 400 square inches of cooking surface, which means they can serve up to six persons. You have to admit that is not something that should be underestimated! However, if you only plan to use the grill for the needs of your family, there is a good chance that a BBQ unit with around 180-200 square inches of space will be more than enough.
While we are on the topic of grilling area, you need to pay attention to the cooking grates, too. In general, the best choice you can make is cast iron. These grates are most durable, they do excellent work in retaining the heat, and they prevent food from sticking to the surface. However, even steel grates can do the job as long as they have porcelain finish. In that case, they will be resistant to rust, and they will have improved durability. However, the crucial thing is to take care of your grates correctly, which means that you need to clean them on a regular basis.