Top 4 Best Electric Grills Outdoor
1. Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Patio Bistro – IR Technology for Juicy Food
|Cooking surface||240 square inches|
|Stainless steel construction||[usr 4]|
|Complete outdoor kitchen||[usr 5]|
The truth is that most electric grills don’t look and feel like you are dealing with a grilling system. As for the design, we do not doubt that Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Patio Bistro reminds of a real BBQ. The dimensions of the product are 24.5 x 25 x 38 inches. The cart it comes with isn’t there only to make moving the product more comfortable, although it does a superb job there thanks to the two wheels included. On top of that, it also enables the unit to be around your waist height and leaves a far better impression than your usual electric tabletop grill.
The model also has a small footprint, which is something we assume you will consider particularly valuable if you live in a condo or apartment. That means that it can be an ideal fit for the enclosed patio or even a balcony. In fact, pretty much everywhere in the vicinity of a power outlet. If this product is your first encounter with the grilling systems, you can rest assured that you have made the right choice. Char-Broil Patio Bistro is newbie-friendly. Although you should read the instruction manual just in case, the whole process comes down to turning it on and monitoring the temperature and cooking time.
The central cooking surface has 240 square inches. If we assume that you need about 70 square inches per every person that means you can cook for 3-4 people on this unit. For those of you who are still in doubt about the available space, let us tell you that you can fit ten average-sized burgers in the grilling area. There is a second rack of 80 square inches, too, and you can use it to keep your food warm or even simmer some vegetables to go as a side dish.
Another thing that singles this model out from the others on the market is the TRU-Infrared technology it uses. Grilling experts agree that infrared heat is an excellent way for even cooking. Out of 100% of the hotness that this unit provides at least 65% comes from the infrared source at any given moment. In combination with the lid, that is more than enough not to worry about the heat distribution and retention abilities of the item.
The product comes with a temperature gauge that is mounted on the lid. You can monitor the heat provided by the 1750W heating element by taking a look at it and, whenever you need to do some adjusting, there is a controller that reminds of the one on your oven. If the red indicator is on, that means that the central cooking area is hot. Once you finish cooking, make sure to remove all the drippings by emptying the contents of the greased pan located beneath the grate.
The reason why this is one of the best electric grills outdoor is also the added working and storage space it provides. There are shelves on both sides of the unit that you can use for platters, rubs, or grilling tools. If you need an extra couple of inches, you can take advantage of the chrome rack on the cart. There is another model of Patio Bistro fueled by gas which you can check out here.
The most prominent positive is that it seems Char-Broil put effort into designing this grill and providing maximum for the price. There are subtle touches and additional features for extra convenience all over the product. The secondary warming rack might be the best proof that they went out of their way to build an excellent unit. The versatility provided means that you don’t have to go to the kitchen to simmer onions and other veggies. You also don’t have to juggle plates thanks to the two side shelves included. And if you don’t need them at the moment, just use the fact that they are foldable to get more space.
The materials used to build this grill were carefully chosen. They are all of the high quality, but we particularly liked the cast-iron cooking grates. Not only they do an excellent job in heat retention, but they also provide a nonstick surface thanks to the porcelain-enamel finish. The cart that comes with a product guarantees that you can swiftly transfer it from the position where you grill to the corner where you store it. We suggest purchasing the cover to protect the BBQ from adverse weather conditions.
The chrome rack on the cart provides extra space, while the cord management feature guarantees that you won’t risk tripping over the cable when you are not using the grill. Cleaning the Patio Bistro, just like using it, takes only minimal effort thanks to the grease management system. However, what matters the most is performance, and the TRU-Infrared technology provides superb results regardless of the type of food you are preparing.
Electric grill tends to come fully set up out of the packaging, but that is not the case with this model. It will take an hour or two, including using tools such as wrench and screwdriver, to get the unit together. Fortunately, the instructions are clear, and you shouldn’t have any problems during the process. On the plus side, you will get a BBQ system that looks and feels like charcoal or gas models, which is worth the trouble of tricky assembling.
The other complaint we have is that Char-Broil could have provided lengthier power cord. Five feet often doesn’t cut it when it comes to reaching the outlet. Manufacturers agree that you shouldn’t use extension cords, which is why you should ensure to have an outdoor power outlet close to the spot where you want to set up your grill.
2. George Foreman 15-Serving GGR50B – Make Room on the Pedestal for This Amazing Grill
|Cooking surface||240 square inches|
|High-domed lid||[usr 5]|
|Five different heat settings||[usr 4]|
George Foreman GGR50B is an extremely affordable electric grill that is universal and can be used both indoors and outdoors. Of course, we will focus on the latter one for this review, but it is always nice to have the option of moving the unit to your kitchen. The model has a slope that you can also notice in other products from this manufacturer. That kind of design serves for fat removing. All the drippings head to the center channel and go down the drain and straight into the catch pan. That has twofold benefits – it provides healthier cooking and more straightforward cleaning. Keep in mind that you can also remove the grill plate and wash it in the sink, but you cannot place it in the dishwasher.
GGR50B has 240 square inches of the grilling surface. You might have noticed that the company advertises it as “15-serving”, but that is something that comes down to the size of the steaks/burgers/veggies you are cooking. Either way, there is enough space to prepare for a party of up to four people. There is no official information regarding the strength of the heating element, but based on our testing and the reviews posted by users on Amazon, it seems to be around 1600W. Either way, it is more than enough to secure proper heat to the grill.
The unit has a total of five temperature settings for maximum control. That provides a whole variety of options for grilling. The lowest level can be used for keeping your food warm until you are ready to dine. The next setting is appropriate for vegetables such as mushrooms and onions, while the third level can be used for chicken breasts or fish. The fourth parameter is recommended for the red meat, and you can use the highest heat to give those lovable sear marks to your food. Whenever you feel like you went too far and want to decrease the hotness, you can use the vent on the lid. That way you don’t risk losing too much temperature if you lift up the cover.
The stand that George Foreman GGR50B comes with is conveniently called pedestal. Come to think of it, perhaps that is an appropriate name, but what is more important is that it does the job of keeping your grill in a position high enough that you don’t have to bend or kneel to operate it. The unit itself weighs around 20 pounds, which means that it’s not too heavy for transport. According to the manufacturer’s tip, you should store the grill (everything but the pedestal) inside to extend its durability.
The lid is high-domed, which adds to the versatility of the unit when it comes to cooking. It means that you can place food such as corn on the cob or chicken thigh with the bone on the cooking surface and grill it without any problem. The nonstick grilling plate will prevent any issues in that department and eliminate any need to use oil or butter when using the unit.
Five different heat settings are more than enough to cover various food choices, including fish, chicken, vegetables, and red meat. The cooking surface is understandably big for an electronic grill, and the heat distribution and retention are admirable. Although it is one of the best electric grills outdoor, it can also be used inside. You just need to remove the pedestal and place it on the kitchen counter.
No gauge monitors are there to keep track of the exact temperature on the grill. Fortunately, that is not a deal breaker as you can get one for just a few bucks in your local store or online. However, we would like if the manufacturer tried to make a stand sturdier. The version comes with keeps the grill in position, but it also brings the risks of kicking and knocking it over accidentally. That is why you should make sure that there are no kids in the vicinity while the grill is working.
3. Weber Q1400 – As Good As Weber Gets
|Cooking surface||189 square inches|
|Pre-assembled product||[usr 5]|
|Cast-aluminum body and lid||[usr 5]|
We stand by our claim that you cannot have a list of best electric grills outdoor (or any other listing of grilling systems for that matter) without including a product made by Weber. Q1400 is just one representative of an entire series dedicated to electric barbecue. The models mostly differ only in details and the available cooking surface.
As for this unit, it has 189 square inches of the central grilling area. That space is powered by a heating element that has 1560W of power and is shaped in a way that provides even and consistent heat to the entire surface. The cooking plate is of cast-iron and has a porcelain-enameled finish, and you would expect nothing less from this manufacturer. While it’s the harsh truth that electric grills are just an alternative for when you don’t have access to gas or charcoal option, but the taste of food that Weber Q1400 provides is as close as you are going to get to the real deal.
There is a valve that you use to control the temperature, and it provides options for keeping your food warm up to giving it sear marks we all love. The Q series is an edition of tabletop grills by default, but there is an official cart that is sold separately. If you do want it to be a real outdoor unit, we suggest purchasing this upgrade that will also secure easier moving from one end of the patio to the other. Otherwise, you will need a different type of stand because it’s inconvenient to place the grill on the floor.
The model doesn’t feature a catch pan per se. However, there is space below the grilling area that looks perfect for placing a greased tray to collect all the drippings. You can use an aluminum pan to catch the grease, but Weber has the appropriate size.
Some of the outdoor electric grills require assembly, and that process is not always explained well. However, Q1400 comes completely assembled, and the only thing you need to is to remove it from the box. That is also convenient if you want to take advantage of the versatility of this unit, considering that it is appropriate for both indoor and outdoor use.
The heat output of this item is incredible. You would expect excellent performance from the models made by this company, but the ease with which the grill achieves a temperature of over 600F is impressive. Thanks to the high-quality of the materials used, including the body and the lid of cast aluminum, the heat retention is the best among all products on our list.
The components were designed with care, and you can’t find a single part that is cheap on this electric grilling system. All this secures superb durability, which means that it is a safe bet that the model will last for years to come.
It’s a shame that Weber didn’t include the collapsible cart with the product, but you have to purchase it separately. Of course, that begs the question whether you need it anyway, but if you don’t have the stand, it becomes just another tabletop grill, and that is not a feeling you want for the outdoors (at least if you ask us).
When you calculate the price of the cart, you will need to pay more than $300 for this grilling system, which is not cheap. However, you will be making a long-term investment as this grill can last for decades if you care for it properly. While we are on the topic of maintenance, it’s a shame that it doesn’t have a greased tray included, but you need to place aluminum pans below the cooking area to collect drippings.
4. MECO Easy Street Electric Cart Grill – Simultaneous Direct and Indirect Heat
|Cooking surface||200 square inches|
|Rectangular design||[usr 5]|
|Both direct and indirect heat||[usr 4]|
MECO Easy Street Electric Cart Grill has a bunch of convenient features that are worth taking a look at the product. For example, it has two side tables you can use as working area. Each of these tables consists of three slats, which offers just enough space to hold your platters, marinades, or grilling tools. There is also a rack at the bottom of the collapsible cart. While that is useful for storing stuff you are not using, there is a question how convenient its location at the bottom is. Apart from that, the stand has two wheels that make transport easier.
The rectangular design makes this unit distinctive than all the others we presented in this review. You can choose between the classic black and black satin model with their only difference being the color. The product is 50 inches long and 19 inches wide with its height being 41 inches when on the stand. The heating element has the strength of 1500W which is more than enough to secure proper heat to 200 square inches of the central grilling area.
The heating element has three preset positions, which is an exciting approach that offers high versatility. The first one enables traditional grilling and can be used for searing burgers and other food. The second provides you the option to create zones that will have different temperatures. That means that you can grill a steak while at the same time simmering some vegetables as a side dish. Finally, you can also convert the heater into a vertical position. That way you can turn the grill into a rotisserie and bake the whole chicken in it.
As for other features, the temperature control is also present, as well as a tray that collects any drippings. The pan is disposable, and you can remove it quickly and replace it with a new aluminum tray.
The rectangular design reminds of classic grilling systems and, if you don’t see the cord that goes to the power outlet, you probably wouldn’t know if this is an electric or charcoal grill. In fact, the versatility might confuse you, too. The fact that you can use this unit as a rotisserie kit and a place to cook using direct and indirect heat simultaneously means that you have a lot more cooking options than on your standard electric grill.
The side tables are also something you don’t often see in this type of grilling products, and the convenience that they provide is superb. Other advantages that are pretty much expected include the disposable catch tray and the rolling cart.
While the wood shelves are convenient, they don’t look like they fit with the rest of the design. In fact, our team agreed that they ruined the aesthetics of an otherwise pleasant-looking product. Of course, the visual impression shouldn’t be the deciding factor when purchasing a grill, but we still like it when it looks nice.
Considering that it is an outdoor grill, it’s a shame that the manufacturer doesn’t offer an official cover even as an optional upgrade. You can use one of the alternatives, but you can also consider storing it in your garage or any place inside to ensure that you protect it from the bad weather.