And it took us less than a minute to set up its three pieces, including a wood top, grill body with handle, and base. The top and base combine to form an attractive prep surface that clips alongside the grill. The single 9,000-BTU burner is fueled by a 16-ounce propane canister that conveniently stores in the base. Being a single-burner grill, the Venture made it a little tricky to manage heat when cooking thicker meats like bone-in chicken, as it’s hard to get away from the heat for longer, indirect cooking. We set the burner on low for the 100 percent beef burgers we grilled, flipped them once, and then turned up the heat to imprint sear lines from the cast-iron grate. Generally, we found it relatively easy to grill thinner foods—this is ideal for cooking burgers, hot dogs, boneless chicken, or fish at an intimate meal some place special or tailgating at the game.
The split Y propane hose creates two temperature-controlled cooking zones, which is unique considering that most portable gas grills only have one temperature control knob. After assembling each of the grills, my goal was to assess the size of each grill’s cooking surface, as well as its weight and shape, fuel type , ease of transport, and overall performance. The Biolite’s grill surface is only about 130 square inches, so it isn’t as large as some of the other portable grills we tested for this guide. However, we were able to fit and cook four burgers over direct heat or four chicken drumsticks when the coals were arranged to indirect heat. If our top gas pick is out of stock, or you’re looking for a portable grill that’s well suited for cooking for a crowd, we recommend the Weber Traveler Portable Gas Grill.
They also often have heat deflector plates that prevent direct searing and grill marks. For tailgating, camping, or a barbecue in the park, the RoadTrip 285 is easy to haul and set up. It runs on 16-ounce propane canisters—bring spares if you’re cooking for a crew or making weber charcoal grill multiple meals. The two-piece grates are made of cast iron and coated with porcelain, covering three burners which yield 20,000 BTUs. The burners all sit under the solid center sections of the grates, which our bread test revealed to be the hottest area on the grill.
If you want portable charcoal grilling in a truly portable package, this is the best small grill to buy. While all the grills on this list are portable to some degree, certain models are decidedly more portable than others. The NomadiQ portable propane grill folds up into a case the size of a small bag, with easy-grab handles.
And while it’s size may have made it bulky and hard to transport, Weber’s round, kettle design kept it from being intimidating. This somewhat simple, unassuming grill turned out to be the sleeper in our test. We were really impressed by how easy it was to cook with either direct or indirect heat. The charcoal tray is adjustable, hanging from a ladder rack that can quickly raise or lower the coals as needed.
The Cuisinart Petit Gourmet Portable Gas Grill stands out from the crowd thanks to its unique design, which converts from a freestanding model into a tabletop model in seconds. The compact design is easy to bring to a sporting event or out camping, yet the porcelain-enameled cooking grate can still fit up to eight burgers at a time. The other thing you’ll notice about charcoal grills is that most of them have flimsy wire grates as opposed to gas grill’s heavy cast-iron grates.
It’s small and simple—fitting about six burgers—but we’d rather upgrade to the Jumbo Joe to get the extra ease-of-use features. For fans of real wood and a relaxing campfire cooking experience, there’s the stainless steel Takibi. This fold-flat fire pit comes with a grill bridge that fits over the top and is adjustable up or down for optimal distance to the coals.
Protect your grill from the elements and keep it looking like new — shop our full selection of durable grill covers from top brands. After testing more than 90 tools from spatulas to tongs to grill gloves and more, we have recommendations for everything you need to have an amazing barbecue. weber genesis 2 Empty the ash catcher after each use, but only once the grill is completely cool and you see no trace of burning embers or warm ash . Don’t use water to extinguish the coals—because, you know, lye. Shield your grill from the elements to keep it from rusting or prematurely aging.