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The best outdoor grills

While summertime is peak grilling season, it doesn’t mean you need to put on that grill cover once it ends. There are places where it stays warm throughout the year, plus some folks don’t mind using the grill during colder months. Don’t worry, you can still have some weekend barbecue action year-round.

But what if you’re buying your first one, or want to upgrade rather than learn how to clean your grill? There are myriad choices out there when it comes to outdoor and portable grills. To make your buying decision a little easier, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite grills on the market, from budget-friendly cookers to the more mighty and majestic choices that connect to Wi-Fi for the carnivorous connoisseur.

At a glance

  • The best overall grill: Weber Spirit E310 Liquid Propane Gas Grill
  • The best grill for beginners: Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grill
  • The best grill for large gatherings: Royal Gourmet GB8000 Event Gas Grill
  • The best budget grill: Char-Broil Classic 360 Liquid Propane Grill
  • The best pellet grill: Traeger Ironwood 885
  • The best kamado grill: Kamado Joe Classic II Charcoal Grill
  • The best portable grill: Nomadiq Portable Propane Gas Grill

The best overall grill: Weber Spirit E310 Liquid Propane Gas Grill

Weber Spirit E310 Liquid Propane Gas Grill being used outdoors.

Weber has long been a dominating and trustworthy name in home grilling, and the Spirit E310 is a perfect summation of their years of innovation and experience. Whether you’re grilling steaks for two or grilling burgers for the whole crew, the Spirit is built for reliable performance for any sized meal. Most of the magic is achieved through a fine working of grilling fundamentals, specifically, Weber’s porcelain engineering. The Spirit’s cooking grates, lid, and internal flavoring tray are all porcelain-enameled. The porcelain surfaces all work in unison to retain and evenly distribute heat throughout the grill body, ensuring your food is well-cooked and loaded with flavor.

The Weber Spirit E310‘s 529 square feet of cooking space means you’ll have plenty of room for any food you can think of. Char some watermelon slices and chocolate treats on the stainless steel grill while letting your burgers simmer on the top rack of the cook-box. The heavy-duty caster wheels make it easy to push the Spirit around your property or to load it onto the bed of a pickup or into a van to go grill at your buddy’s place. The lid-placed temperature gauge lets you monitor how warm things are when the lid is closed, and the fuel gauge (located near the tank) keeps a constant eye on how much propane you’ve got to work with.

The best grill for beginners: Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grill

Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grill against white background.

This 24,000 BTU TRU-Infrared grill by Char-Broil is a great option for any backyard chef, but particularly beginners. For starters, the grill uses Char-Broil’s No Flare-Ups technology to ensure even cooking across the entire 450-square-foot grill top. Char-Broil’s engineered stainless steel can be found both inside and out. Under the lid, the top-ported stainless steel burners will allow the chef to make very fine cooking adjustments, from high heat to extremely low temperatures. Outside the lid, the stainless steel makes for a rugged and long-lasting outer shell for the grill body.

We also love the Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grill‘s foldable 10,000 BTU side burner, which is perfect for prepping sauces for meat marinades. The lid-mounted temperature gauge makes it easy to keep an eye on your cook cycle, and when your grilling is done, the porcelain-coated grates are rust-proof and very easy to clean.

The best grill for large gatherings: Royal Gourmet GB8000 Event Gas Grill

Royal Gourmet GB8000 Event Gas Grill against white backdrop.

Here’s one for the household that throws all the shindigs. This mighty 104,000 BTU gas grill by Royal Gourmet features eight stainless steel tube burners, each firing at 13,000 BTUs over a 950-square-foot cooktop. That’s enough room for 60 burgers or 120 hot dogs all sizzling at the same time. An electronic ignition ensures fast startup when it’s time to start grilling, and the two bottom-mounted grease cups keep the liquid gristle away from your meats. Four-inch locking wheels make it simple to move the Royal Gourmet GB8000 around, and the entire cooking surface is non-stick, so cleanup is a breeze.

The best budget grill: Char-Broil Classic 360 Liquid Propane Grill

Char-Broil Classic 360 Liquid Propane Grill against white background.

Char-Broil gets a second mention with the no-frills Classic 360, a 360-square-foot cooktop with porcelain-coated grates. This gas grill uses three stainless steel in-line burners for all of your cooking. A Piezo ignition system means fast fire-ups with the single push of a button, and the grill sits on two 6-inch wheels for easy movement. There are also two foldable side shelves if you need a nearby place to keep utensils and ingredients.

While the Classic 360 may not come loaded with the bells and whistles of more higher-end offerings, it nails all the must-haves for any backyard grill, and does so at a price most folks can wrap their heads (and stomachs) around. Many customers are also fans of the simple assembly and overall ease of use when it comes time to do some actual grilling.

The best pellet grill: Traeger Ironwood 885

A family grilling on a patio overlooking mountains.

Gas grills have the convenience of being quick to start and reliable, but sometimes you get a different kind of flavor out of your grills when you use different materials, like wooden pellets. If you’ve ever had barbecue ribs from a pellet smoker, you’ll know there’s simply no other way to eat ribs. When it comes to a modern outdoor grill, the Traeger Ironwood 885 is filled to the brim with everything a grill master needs to impress friends and family.

Of course, you can bake, roast, braise, and grill all of your foods with this grill, but you can also smoke them to draw out flavors you won’t get with traditional gas grilling. You also get consistency thanks to temperature control, even out of a wood pellet grill, so that your foods always come out the right way each and every time. There’s plenty of room, too, because it features a generous 885 square inches of capacity — more than enough to cook all your favorite barbecue dishes.

Over on the tech side, the Traeger Ironwood 885 features a WiFIRE controller, which allows you to set, monitor, and adjust the temperature all through your mobile device using the Traeger app.  This allows you to relax in peace knowing that you’ll be kept in the loop when it’s all done cooking through alerts that come to your phone.

The best kamado grill: Kamado Joe Classic II Charcoal Grill

Kamado Joe Classic II Charcoal Grill on a deck.

Kamado-style grilling can be traced back over 3,000 years to parts of China, where primitive kamados were fashioned from earthen resources, particularly clay. Today, smokers like the Kamado Joe Classic II showcase a number of key elements from the traditional kamado design, along with a few modern touches. For starters, the ceramic-shelled Classic II boasts an 18-inch grill top for all your smoking/searing/baking needs. Easily whip up entire entrees with roasted sides, or make a lot of one kind of food, like steak tips or charred veggies. If you’d rather keep your food separated, the Classic II’s double-tiered grill grate allows you to cook different foods at different temperatures, but at the same time.

For smoking precision, the Kamado Joe Classic II features a Kontrol Tower Top Vent that maintains a perfect airflow for the kamado while allowing you to grill at temperatures ranging from 225 up to 750 degrees. This is also an easy grill to drag in and out of the garage, thanks to the rugged wheels and locking casters. Cook, eat, then easily store away until your next meal. While this is one of the more expensive offerings on our list, the Classic II is a well-armored grilling stalwart that offers up the best of kamado cooking. In terms of charcoal grilling, it doesn’t get much better than Joe.

The best portable grill: Nomadiq Portable Propane Gas Grill

Pans cooking food on the Nomadiq Portable Propane Gas Grill.

Are you a regular camper? Sick of relying on those old rusted campsite grills? Stop with all of the hassles and go with the convenient Nomadiq Portable Propane Gas Grill. It’s so portable, in fact, that you can strap it around your shoulder for true on-the-go grilling whenever and wherever.

Its folding design makes it a snap for setup and pack-up, while its 12.3-pound weight isn’t a burden at all to truck around. Powered by portable propane gas tanks, the Nomadiq Portable Propane Gas Grill offers dual temperature control to get the right amount of heat to cook your foods. With 226 square inches of grilling space, it’s enough to cook a main serving — as well as a side dish.

Whether you’re hiking over the weekend, having a get-together at the park, or simply having a small shindig in your backyard, its design makes it convenient for all special occasions. Best of all, it’s simple to clean and barely takes up any space at all when it’s not being used.

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