Charcoal grills are an element of summertime; the smell of ribs, steaks, and chicken roasting over apple-wood chips and hot coals never fails in drawing a crowd.
And even though a charcoal grill has a relatively simple design corresponded to its propane mates, that doesn’t mean that they are all made equal. There are two primary sorts of charcoal grills: kettle and barrel.
You can also purchase ceramic-bodied kettle grills like the Kamado Joe or Big Green Egg if you want to get super fancy. These charcoal grills act like smelting furnaces: the ceramic lining echoes and retains heat better than regular steel, allowing for more even slow roasting, cooking, and indirect heat cooking.
You won’t have to employ as much fuel to get the same grilling results. The downside is that these ceramic grills are much more costly than their metal-bodied brethren.
However, since they feature lids, ceramic linings, and fire bowls, they aren’t as susceptible to damage from the elements as a steel kettle or barrel grill; ceramic doesn’t rust. As a result, the $750 may be a better asset if you live in an area with wet summers and unpredictable winters.
To help you discover the charcoal grill of your dreams, we’ve rounded up five of the best you can purchase right now. We’ve also split down their defining features and price matters to help you decide which best serves your outdoor space and budget.
Weber Original Kettle
|Hinged cooking grate, One-touch ash catcher, Porcelain enamel coating, Wheeled frame||On the pricey side, Kind of short (just 42 inches tall)|
The Weber Original Kettle is a great charcoal grill and the best you can purchase. The classic design is perfect for direct and indirect heat grilling and smoking more harrowing scrapes like ribs and brisket. The 26-inch diameter provides an incredible 508 square inches of cooking surface, enough space for 19 burgers or two spatchcocked whole chickens. The stainless steel grill grate characterized a hinge that makes it easy to add more fuel or rearrange the coals to eliminate hotspots. The bottom of the grill holds a convenient, one-touch ash catcher for effortless cleaning and disposal. The side handles have incorporated hooks to keep tools like spatulas, tongs, and brushes close at hand, while the grill’s body has a cradle for the lid, so you don’t have to set it on the ground to correspond with your food. The cover features a built-in thermometer to keep an eye on your food without containing to take off the lid. It also has adjustable ducts to control cooking temperatures for ideal steaks, chicken, and fish every time. In addition, the Original Kettle has two 8-inch plastic wheels that make it more comfortable to drive the grill around your patio or deck to keep it out of the way or bring it to a more suitable cooking area. The grill element porcelain enamel coatings lid and body help prevent rust and scratches and keep your grill looking fantastic.
|Under $100, Dual dampers, Side shelf||Cast iron grates require more maintenance, No ash door|
The Maverick by Char-Griller confirms that a great grill doesn’t have to crack the bank. This barrel-style charcoal grill deals for under $100, so even if you’re performing with a more modest budget, you’ll be able to boost your outdoor cooking space. The Maverick has 320 square inches of cooking space, sufficient room for about 15 burgers, and cast iron cooking grates for durability. A fixed side shelf is a perfect place to set utensils, seasonings, grill brushes, and sauces to keep close at hand while you’re grilling. A built-in thermometer lets you quickly see internal grill temperatures, and dual dampers allow you to control airflow for more consistent cooking. The Maverick also features two wheels for more relaxed maneuvering when moving the grill out of the elements. Finally, the charcoal and ash pan lifts out of the grill for quick and easy disposal of spent coals and ashes to control your grill clean and in excellent condition.
Vision Kamado Pro
|Ceramic body, Plenty of cooking surface area, Electric starter and cover included||Expensive, Not suited to beginner grill cooks|
If you’re severe about grilling, you’ll desire to spend the extra money on the Kamado Pro from Vision Grills. While it is more costly, the price is backed up by solid, durable construction. The grill’s body is made of a heavy-duty ceramic material that is designed to retain better and more evenly dispersed heat for more consistent cooking and smoking. It reduces how much charcoal you need to use to get perfect steaks, ribs, etc., chicken every time. The ceramic also covers the outer shell from heat, lowering the risk of burns when you raise the lid or accidentally brush against the grill while it’s in service. The cover features two assist springs to decrease the lift weight of the body, making it more comfortable to fast check on your food or move things around to contain burning. The Kamado Pro includes a cooking surface of 604 square inches, which is a bunch of room for smoking and grilling, most cuts of fish, meat, and even veggies. The grill arrives with two grates for cooking on distinct levels, perfect for cooking other foods simultaneously, like meat on the lower rack to be closer to the fuel source and veggies up elevated, so they don’t burn. It also includes two solid frames for cooking things like pizza and flatbreads or soft foods like fish. The facade of the grill features a port for help with the included electric starter and two knobs that control the dampers for constant temperatures. The pull-out ash drawer makes it comfortable to empty and clean the Kamado Pro when your charcoal is spent. Two side shelves make it comfortable to hold sauces, seasonings, and tools close at hand, while the four caster wheels create it effortless to maneuver the grill around your terrace or patio. The Kamado Pro reaches with a vinyl cover to save it from the elements when not in use and an electric starter for faster charcoal lighting. You can also buy a gas insert to transform the grill into a propane-fueled prototype for cleaner cooking.
Char-Griller Smokin’ Champ
|Side firebox for offset smoking, Warming rack, Large cooking surface||Adjusting fire grate may be tricky, No ash door|
The Smokin’ Champ from Char-Griller is an excellent option for anyone who enjoys a charcoal grill to pull double duty. This grill features a side firebox along with the main cooking barrel that can be used to offset smoking. The main cooking grate contains:
- 675 square inches of surface area.
- Enough space for four briskets.
- Six racks of ribs.
- Eight whole chickens.
There is also a warming stand in the lid for keeping food warmed through before serving. The fire pan can be altered up or down for more direct-heat cooking or slower roasting; a smokestack and drags also help control airflow and temperature for perfect fish, meat, and veggies. The removable ash pan makes cleansing your grill rapid and comfortable, and the dual 8-inch wheels allow for more rapid maneuvering around your patio or deck. The Smokin’ Champ has a perforated side shelf and a perforated bottom shelf ideal for keeping utensils, seasonings, and even extra fuel nearby for more efficient cooking.
Weber Smokey Joe
|Dual dampers, Ash/drip pan, Porcelain enameled steel construction, Plenty of cooking surface area||Legs don’t fold up|
The Smokey Joe shows you the Weber quality you’ve expected from a charcoal grill in a portable package. This small grill measures 14.5 x 17 x 14.25 inches, making it small enough to fill into an RV, truck, or SUV for picnics and camping trips. The steel cooking grate contains 147 square inches of surface area, providing plenty of room for burgers, chicken, veggies, and steaks. The Smokey Joe features grinches on the lid and bottom of the fire bowl for optimal airflow and temperature management, while the drip/ash pan catches runoff from your food and consumed fuel. In addition, the lid and fire bowl have Weber’s signature porcelain enamel coating to protect the steel from corrosion, rust, and scratches. Finally, if you require to replace a part of the whole grill, you can take advantage of Weber’s impressive ten-year warranty.
You could even burn charcoal or hardwood fuel to reach a high internal grill temperature and then use the residual heat for cooking things like flatbreads, pizzas, fish, and veggies. So, why are you waiting? ….. go, get one for your family.