Weber Original Kettle
Cuisinart Charcoal Grill
For a long period of time, charcoal grills were the most commonly opted options by backyard grillers. They have been the conventional mode of grilling since times unknown. Although it is a difficult task to fire a charcoal grill as well as maintain a consistent temperature, you can achieve it with a little bit of practice.
A charcoal grill is the preferred grilling option for a wide set of reasons. To start with, there is no temperature limit. You can get the temperature as high as you want to. Using a charcoal smoker allows you to create both direct as well as indirect heat. Based on the overall design of your grill, you can use it for grilling, smoking, searing, baking, and many more cooking methods.
You can conveniently arrange dual zones to your charcoal pit by banking some or all the coals on one side. When you place charcoal below your food, it cooks the food using infrared heat. Therefore, it results in less loss of moisture when compared with any other type of heat transfer. You can even choose to add wood chips on top of your coals for enjoying wood-fired flavors. Additionally, you wouldn’t need any smoker boxes.
A charcoal grill is a budget-friendly cooking option primarily because it lacks highly-priced components such as valves and burners. Lastly, charcoal grilling is undoubtedly a skill that is passed on from one generation to the next. Therefore, it becomes a tradition that you will cherish forever.
Since it has a wide-ranging application, a charcoal grill comes in a wide variety of options. What might be a suitable fit for you might end up becoming a misfit for another person. Factors such as the price, overall construction, size, features, and design are some of the important factors which need to be taken into consideration.
In the article that follows, we will discuss the factors that you need to analyze before buying a charcoal grill.
Quick Overview Of Best Charcoal Grills
Best 10 Charcoal Grills In 2022
- 1 Best 10 Charcoal Grills In 2022
- 1.1 Best Overall: Weber Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill
- 1.2 Best Digital Control: Masterbuilt Digital Charcoal Grill
- 1.3 Best In value: PK Grills Charcoal Grill
- 1.4 Best Aesthetics: Char-Griller Charcoal Grill
- 1.5 Best Heavy Duty: Royal Gourmet Charcoal Grill
- 1.6 Best Portable: Lovely Snail Charcoal Grill
- 1.7 Best Kamado Style: Char-Griller Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill
- 1.8 Best In Budget: Cuisinart Portable Charcoal Grill
- 1.9 Best Offset: Royal Gourmet Charcoal Grill
- 1.10 Best With Performance: Masterbuilt MB20040221 Digital Charcoal Grill
- 2 Things To Consider Before Buying
- 3 Difference Between A Gas And Charcoal Grill
- 4 FAQs
- 5 Conclusion
Best Overall: Weber Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill
It has dimensions of 22.5 x 22.5 x 27 inches, making it a great choice for those who want a portable grill and the 32.3-pound weight makes it easy to move around your backyard or patio. It has plenty of space to cook 13 burgers for a large group of people, and the built-in lid thermometer ensures that your food will be cooked to perfection.
The grill also features a porcelain-enameled bowl and lid, as well as a built-in lid thermometer. Plus, there’s a Heavy-duty plated steel cooking grate that is great for even heat distribution. It also comes with an aluminum ash catcher that makes cleanup a breeze.
One of the standout features of this grill is the lid hook, which ensures that the lid doesn’t have to be placed on the ground when grilling. This is a small but important detail that makes the grill more convenient to use. Another great feature is the hinged cooking grate, which makes it easy to add charcoal or wood chips while grilling.
Best Digital Control: Masterbuilt Digital Charcoal Grill
It has a weight of only 146.98 pounds, so it’s easy to carry with you wherever you go. The dimensions of the grill are 24.65 x 54.13 x 51.97 inches, making it large enough to accommodate all of your cooking needs. This high-tech grill can reach searing temperatures of up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit in just 13 minutes, making it ideal for quick and convenient cooking.
With its digital control panel, you can precisely set the temperature and cooking time, ensuring that your food is cooked just the way you like it. The built-in temperature gauge and meat probe thermometer make it easy to monitor the progress of your meal, so you can be sure that it’s cooked to perfection.
It offers 560 total square inches of cooking space. This is made possible by the two porcelain-coated warming racks. There is also a built-in fan that circulates air for even cooking. This product also has the easiest assembly process so that you can get started grilling as soon as possible.
Best In value: PK Grills Charcoal Grill
It has dimensions of 23 x 54 x 43 inches and a weight of 90 pounds, making it just the right size for most households. with its unique capsule shape combined with 4-point venting, you’ll be able to get real no-nonsense barbecue flavor every time.
This versatile grill features two zones, allowing you to cook food with direct or indirect heat. Zone 1 is ideal for quick, sizzling char grills, while zone 2 is perfect for slow-roasting or smoking. With its convenient lid design, it also allows you to easily monitor and regulate the temperature of your food.
It is made of thick cast aluminum and has been powder coated to be rust-proof. The cast aluminum body also conducts heat 4 times faster than steel and distributes the heat evenly so there are no hot spots.
Best Aesthetics: Char-Griller Charcoal Grill
The grill also has a large cooking area, which can accommodate up to 38 burgers. The grill’s dimensions are 49 x 29 x 50 inches, and it weighs 88 pounds. With 725 square inches of primary cooking area and a 225 square inch warming rack, this grill provides plenty of space for cooking up family meals or entertaining guests.
The cast-iron grates are able to withstand high temperatures, making them ideal for searing meat. The double-wall construction helps to ensure even cooking, while the built-in temperature gauge makes it easy to monitor the internal temperature of the grill.
The dual dampers and thermometer make it easy to control the heat, while the easy-dump ash pan makes clean-up a breeze.
Best Heavy Duty: Royal Gourmet Charcoal Grill
The grill has a spacious cooking area of 22″D x 50″W x 48.8″H. Additionally, it comes with two porcelain enamel steel wired cooking grates that provide a total of 393 square inches of cooking surface. It also has a warming rack with 205 square inches of space.
The wires on both the cooking grates and the warming rack are made of chrome steel for durability. The grill also has a Char-Basket charcoal management system that allows for easy and efficient charcoal management. Finally, the product only weighs 59 pounds, making it easy to transport and store.
The heavy-duty lid-mounted temperature gauge ensures that your food will be cooked to perfection, while the two fixed side shelves offer extra seasoning area. The stainless steel handle ensures that your hands will stay cool during the cooking process. The grill also includes a drip pan to catch any drips or spills.
This model features a square tube leg cart with a steel bottom shelf, making it easy to move around your backyard or patio. The built-in stainless steel bottle opener is a nice touch, and the overall design of the grill is both stylish and functional.
Best Portable: Lovely Snail Charcoal Grill
With dimensions of 16.5 x 11.4 x 11.8 inches, it’s compact and easy to store. The entire grill weighs just 7.92 pounds, so it’s easy to carry to your next picnic or camping trip. It’s easy to assemble and made with high-quality materials, so you can be sure it will last for years to come.
This unique design creates a three-dimensional heating environment that allows for evenly cooked food. The vertical pipe smokestack also allows for a more efficient cooking process by allowing smoke to rise directly up through the center of the grill.
The grilling net is made of 304 stainless steel, which is non-sticky and high-temperature resistant. The grill also has a heat conduction feature. The grill has a thermometer on the lid so you can monitor the temperature, and two adjustable air vents on the side so you can control the amount of heat.
Best Kamado Style: Char-Griller Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill
With its dimensions of 45 x 31 x 47 inches, it can easily accommodate a whole chicken or several burgers and hot dogs. The grill also has a weight of only 97 pounds, making it easy to transport from one location to another. The grill has a 20-inch cooking diameter and a 447 square-inch total cooking area, making it perfect for large gatherings.
This grill features a triple-walled steel insulated design that helps to retain heat, as well as cast iron grates that provide even heat distribution. The locking lid and 8″ locking caster wheels make this grill easy to transport, while the removable warming rack and bottom storage shelf make it easy to keep your grilling supplies organized.
The foldable side shelf provides additional prep space, and the entire unit can be easily assembled in just minutes. The removable easy dump ash pan makes clean-up a breeze, and the non-stick cast iron grates provide even heat distribution.
Best In Budget: Cuisinart Portable Charcoal Grill
This compact grill is perfect for tailgating, picnicking, or camping, and it can easily be transported in a car or RV. The Cuisinart Portable Charcoal Grill includes 14.5 x 14.5 x 15 inches dimensions and 2 Pounds weight. It has a durable construction with a double-wall stainless steel body and a cast-iron cooking grid.
It features a 150-square-inch chrome-plated cooking rack, allowing you to cook multiple burgers or steaks at once. The dual venting system gives you complete control over the charcoal, so you can adjust the temperature to create the perfect sear. With three secure lid locks, it’s easy to transport, and the durable enamel coating on the firebox and ash catcher makes it safe and easy to use.
Best Offset: Royal Gourmet Charcoal Grill
It provides 53.39 x 27.95 x 48.82 inches dimensions and 54.3 Pounds weight, making it the perfect size for any backyard. The grill also features a side table for prep space, and a warming rack to keep food warm. One of the best features of this grill is the easy-to-open side door. This allows you to add charcoal and remove ashes without having to remove the entire grill grate.
This grill features 443 sq. in. of porcelain-enameled steel wire cooking grates, 184 sq. in. of chrome-plated warming rack, and 184 sq. in. offset smoker box. That means there’s plenty of space to cook for a large group, and you can even use the smoker box to add a little extra flavor to your food. The grill also includes a temperature gauge, so you can always keep an eye on the temperature of your food.
This grill provides a two-level height-adjustable charcoal pan for better heat control and holds up to 4.4 lbs. of coal. The lid-mounted thermometer gauge helps you check and monitor the temperature, while the front and side tables offer a workspace for seasonings and grilling tools.
Best With Performance: Masterbuilt MB20040221 Digital Charcoal Grill
This grill has 55 x 31 x 51 inches dimensions and weighs 204.2 pounds, making it the perfect size for most backyards. It reaches 225 degrees Fahrenheit in 8 minutes, 450 degrees Fahrenheit in 10 minutes, or a whopping 700 degrees Fahrenheit in just 14 minutes.
The grill includes a flat-top griddle insert that is perfect for cooking pancakes, eggs, and bacon, as well as a set of cast iron grill grates that offer 800 square inches of cooking space. The digital controls make it easy to set the temperature, and the built-in fan helps to circulate the smoke for even cooking.
It also has a built-in meat probe and temperature gauge that allows you to monitor the internal temperature of your food. Additionally, the grill comes with an easy dump ashtray that makes cleanup a breeze, and it has four durable casters that make it easy to move around your backyard or patio.
Things To Consider Before Buying
Materials And StabilityThe components of your grill must be made of high-quality materials. When exposed to elements and heavy use, your grill should be able to last for a minimum period of a few years. In addition, your grill should be stable be it on grass, pavement, or gravel.
SizeMany people who live in an apartment wish to opt for a small grill that can easily fit on their patio. However, they experience restrictions when using charcoal and therefore, have to look into alternative fuel options. Charcoal grills which are portable are a well-known option for camping as well as tailgating. However, if you wish to purchase something big, go for a full-sized charcoal grill for your backyard. You should have enough cooking space so that you don’t end up overcrowding your grill. For instance, you should have at least half an inch of distance between different food items on your grill. You should be able to create a two-zone setup to ensure that the charcoal fire runs consistently. When you have a two-zone setup, the chances of exploding sausage or charred chicken are significantly reduced. In addition, you have the option to gently sizzle or roast as well as sear your meat at the same time. You should opt for a model which has a lid. Although lidless charcoal grills are a feasible option for preparing burgers or other such simple meals, you will need a lid if you want to smoke ribs or roast turkey.
FunctionalityYour grates should be easy to cook on. Your charcoal grill should be such that it is easy for you to dump as well as rearrange the hot coals as and when required. Make sure you take notice of any hotspots that your grill has as well.
PriceWhile it is not a rule that a proficient charcoal goal will cost a lot, there are many advanced models which have compelling features as well as superb construction. For the majority, the cost of an appliance is an important factor before making any purchase. Irrespective of your predetermined budget for the charcoal grill, you should opt for a model which comes with an ash-removal system. Even if it is slightly on the expensive side for you, it will be worth the ease of use that the grill offers. You will, therefore, be saved from the hassle of removing the ash yourself.
ThermometersIrrespective of the charcoal grill that you opt for, never rely on the readings provided by the built-in dial thermometers. These readings might be inaccurate by as much as 50 degrees to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Such inaccuracy in temperature reading occurs because these dials are situated on the lid instead of the food surface where the food is prepared. Since you are not consuming the lid, the temperature reading stands invalid.
CleanupYou should opt for a charcoal grill that is easy to clean. If your charcoal grill has removable parts, those parts should be easy to remove. In addition, make sure the manual includes instructions for easy as well as proper cleaning.
Heat Retention And ManipulationYour charcoal grill must offer good heat retention. There should also be an easy airflow adjustment through vents and dampers as well as the assurance of other functions such as an adjustable charcoal tray.
Construction And Air ControlYour gas grill should be well-vented for maximum safety. If you deprive the burner of oxygen, the flame will go out whereas the gas fuel will continue to come and accumulate under the hood, leading to the creation of a serious fire hazard. Charcoal grills function in the opposite manner. These grills work at their best when they are sealed with a tight and solid construction for effective control of the air. Charcoal fire requires oxygen for burning. Now you can use this flow of oxygen to your advantage. The air control demanded by charcoal grills makes them good smokers as well. You can even close down your charcoal grill vent to ensure that very little air flows in and out of the appliance.
Grill FeaturesYou should look for features that are likely to enhance your overall grilling experience. In addition, the features offered by your grill should be worth the money that you are offering for them.
Difference Between A Gas And Charcoal Grill
A gas and a charcoal grill vary on several grounds. A gas grill gives a cleaner flavour to your food whereas a charcoal grill offers a tender, smoky flavour. Using a gas grill restricts your temperature range to a maximum of 600 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, you can go as high as 1200 degrees Fahrenheit when using a charcoal grill. When you are using a charcoal grill, you are the master of the temperature.
When it comes to price, a charcoal grill is more on the budget-friendly side. Based on the style that you opt for, you can purchase a charcoal grill for as low as $30. However, a charcoal grill might be an expensive investment in the long run because it would end up costing you way more when you are purchasing the fuel.
The heat-up time of a gas grill is way less than that of a charcoal grill. A charcoal grill requires more time since the coals need to heat up even before you can begin cooking. In addition, a gas grill offers you an increased level of control over the temperature as compared to the classic charcoal grill. You don’t have to constantly monitor the temperature when operating a gas grill which is a necessity when it comes to a charcoal grill.
A gas grill is a more environmentally friendly option than a charcoal grill because unlike a charcoal grill, it doesn’t produce lots of waste in the form of residual ash.
Therefore, the choice between a gas grill and a charcoal grill is a matter of personal preference. If you are someone who loves the easy way out and wouldn’t want to be bothered much by the details of operating a charcoal grill, a gas grill is a feasible option for you. On the other hand, if you wish to enjoy the traditional smoky flavour guaranteed by the charcoal grill and don’t mind investing your time into learning the details of operating the grill, you should opt for a charcoal grill.
How Do You Use A Charcoal Grill?
Start by filling your charcoal chimney with briquettes. Once you have prepared your fire starter, light the chimney. Spread an even layer of charcoal to make sure your food is prepared at a faster pace. Clean your grill grate. You can even throw in some wood chips for adding an extra smoky flavor. When your grill is hot, place your food on it. Cover your grill if required. Keep inspecting the temperature of your food. Once you are done cooking, close off the lid and discard the ashes.
How Do You Start A Charcoal Grill?
Start by adding charcoal to your chimney. Position the starters under the chimney and light up the fire. When you see the formation of flames, start pouring coals onto your grill surface. When your coals turn white, cover them with the grate and you are all set for cooking.
What Is The Best Grill: Gas Or Charcoal?
The best grill for you is a matter of choice. A gas grill offers ease of use as well as cleaning. You don’t have to worry about constantly monitoring the temperature of your grill. On the other hand, a charcoal grill assures you of the authentic flavor of smoked food. While it is difficult to monitor the fuel in your charcoal grill, it can easily be achieved with some degree of practice.
How Do You Put Out A Charcoal Grill?
To put out your charcoal grill, begin by cooling the leftover coals in your charcoal grill. You should shut down the vents for at least 48 hours to make sure the ash has completely cooled down. Slowly pour water over the coals and keep stirring them. This will enable you to cool the ash at a faster pace.
How Do You Clean A Charcoal Grill?
You can simply use hot water and dish detergent to clean your charcoal grill. Dip your sponge into the mixture of detergent and hot water and use it for scrubbing the grates. You can simply dip a towel in the soapy water solution and use it for cleaning the rest of your grill’s surface.
Therefore, it is important to conduct a detailed analysis before you make a choice regarding the best charcoal grill for yourself. A charcoal grill offers you the authentic BBQ flavor that no other grill or smoker can offer. Given the vast multitude of options available, you can dissect your options and purchase the best option for yourself. A charcoal grill is a commonly opted option for a myriad of reasons. The first reason why the charcoal grill stands out is the tender, smoky taste offered by it.
Another reason is the enhanced degree of control that you have over the temperature. You can simply set the temperature as high or as low as you want it to. When it comes to portability, charcoal grills are your go-to. You can simply fold it down and wheel it off to your desired locations. Therefore, if you are into camping or tailgating trips, you should opt for a charcoal grill.
When compared with other types of grills, a charcoal grill burns hotter. If you are a true grill master, you would know how to use the grills to your advantage. Since a charcoal grill doesn’t consist of many advanced components, any breakdowns can be easily repaired.
On a concluding note, a charcoal grill offers several merits. Therefore, if you plan on investing in one of these, you won’t regret it.