Quick Review of the Best Camping Grill – Portable Types in 2017
The holidays are approaching fast, and everyone is excited to get into the outdoors. And what better way to get the most out of the outdoors than to go camping and cooking by the campfire?
You may be camping at the lakeside, near the woods, or along the beach – it doesn’t matter – as long as you have a portable camping grill with you. These grills are flexible and portable - you can cook with them anywhere you like.
They are also easier to maintain compared to other grill types – such as the charcoal based grill. These are handy items indeed with all the products and brands available in the market today, how do you choose one that would match your needs?
Well, that is what we’re going to discuss in this post. Let’s check out the features of the best outdoor grills.
#1. How To Choose The Best Portable Grill
Start With The Basics
Before you get too excited and choose a grill of your fancy, you must first consider when, where and how you will be grilling. This preliminary evaluation applies to all grilling activities, and it is the main basis to which you will choose a certain product.
The Best Portable Gas Grill Features
British Thermal Units or BTUs are the units used to indicate the output for heating up the grill. By principle, higher BTUs indicate hotter temperatures. Thus, the rate of BTUs will determine the amount of heat that’s being generated by the grill.
Grills with very high BTU capacity will have the edge over other grills even if they have a lesser score in design, weight, and construction. It is always important for a grill to be able to keep up with the heat.
A model with low BTUs make take longer to preheat, and this reduces the recovery time once you’ve loaded the grate with meat, fish, and food.
If you want to learn how to calculate for BTU, refer to this page.
Most of the portable grilling units only have one temperature control as limited by their size. But if you want to consider one which has dual burners, you must also check for dual control temperature to set different temperature zones while cooking.
Surface Cooking Area
Because the majority of portable grills don’t have a warming tray or big holding space, you need to consider how much surface area you normally need. If you want to cook a whole meal on the grate, for instance, you might need more space than you normally would when grilling a couple of fish.
When it comes to gas grills, the best types are usually made up of brass stainless or steel because the traditional cast iron easily rusts out and aluminum eventually burns out. Stainless steel along the range of 18-8 or 304 rating is highly resistant to corrosion.
Dripping grease is a common problem when grilling and most gas grills are built with a metal deflector between the burners and grates. This will generate more heat and lessen the hot spots over the grate.
Grates are a major factor. The reasons for this are several but for one – they help you contain the heat in the cooking and focus them on your food while grilling. They also prevent typical char marks from occurring.
Chrome and nickel-plated grates have a wire core. They are lightweight and don’t contain heat very well. They also have the tendency to rust out.
Gas grills usually come with spark ignition systems. Some these are battery-powered while others have a dial for lighting a spark. And there’s also the option to do manual ignition if the starter fails. You would usually use a candle lither or match for this.
Quality of Construction
The quality of material and light weight are crucial if the grill is to become portable. But lightweight may also entail a flimsy construction and so you must not focus exclusively on light weight. Since we’re dealing with hot liquids and flames, you must take safety as a major priority.
The grill’s stand and the grill itself must be stable – the more stable it is, the better. Be sure to choose a stable and sturdy product because you don’t want to risk injuring yourself or your loved ones.
The best materials for these units are usually stainless steel, cast aluminum, cast iron, and enameled steel.
Regarding construction, the best models provide a good one for your money. But just to make sure, you can check for the metal used, heft or gauge, paint, bolts, nuts and the welds.
If you think you’re always going to be on the move, then you need a model that is secured with latches and lids. When it comes to sturdy models, try to see how small the model is and whether you can easily store or carry it.
The majority of transportable models have small propane cylinders (camping size), and that is great for a few meals. But then it would be more economical for you to purchase a conversion kit instead of a propane tank.
When it comes to transportable units, the shelves will be detachable while not in use. You can check the shelves for its sturdiness. There’s probably no need for you to use them if you’re holding a big fish in your hands but they can bear the weight of a standard food plate along with the utensils.
Would it be difficult to assemble the unit for yourself?
Check out the country where the unit is manufactured and determine the parts that have already been assembled while making sure that the manual was written in your native language. It would be useless to bring a grill with you if, in the end, you won’t be able to assemble it properly.
Those are the features you must look for in a portable outdoor gear.
#2. Review Of The 5 Best Camping Grills
Weber Q2200 is a unit with 12,000 BTUs. It is packed with features such electronic ignition; porcelain covered iron grates, aluminum body and lid, and stainless burner. But that’s not all because it also has - two foldable side shelves, 280 square inch surface, detachable tray and burner valve control.
The unit is pre-assembled and is made in the USA.
- The porcelain grills promotes fast clean-up
- It’s a very durable unit built to last for a longer period
- The heavy-duty aluminum body helps the unit resist flexing and rusting while maintaining a lightweight for effortless transport.
- Some people complained that the product is not as durable as it claims to be although these complaints are very few.
The Cuisinart Tabletop features 12,000 BTUs which easily reaches temperatures of 500°F. The twist-start ignition makes it easier for you to start the unit up. The lid, burner, and handle are made of stainless steel while the grill itself is made up from porcelain-enameled cast iron. The unit also has stainless shelves, temperature valves, and a detachable tray.
- It has good construction, and the quality of the material is good for its size
- The unit holds the heat very well - It also heats up well
- It is convenient to use because of the folding shelves which make it easy to transport and store.
- There are several reports of a temperature loss once you convert to a 20-lb tank.
The Coleman Road Trip boasts about having 10,000 BTUs on each burner on separate controls. And since it has dual controls, the BTU can be summed up to 20,000 total. It has a big 285-square inch surface – perfect for family cooking. The scissor legs are collapsible and take in two wheels. It can fold down to transport mode for a much easier storage and transport.
It has an integrated electronic ignition, porcelain-enamelled iron grates, removable tray, as well as two sliding shelves.
- Setting up is easy and fast – the unit is perfect for camping and traveling
- It converts well to a 20-lb tank with excellent heat output
- The surface area is big – accommodating enough food for the family.
- Though there are several customer complaints regarding the lid size being too tiny for closed grilling, as well as several complaints about the regulator breaking in one year or so.
This Grill is ideal for campers of all sorts – experienced campers and beginners alike. This durable grill was designed for camping in different types of climate conditions. It has a heavy cast iron cookware and a tough steel mesh capable of withstanding heat. The item comes in three sizes.
Also called the ''Authentic Adventure Gear,'' this product is an embodiment of the company’s vision. It is a popular and highly rated camping gear and is made only of the finest hammocks in the market.
- Heavy-duty compact steel campfire grill that is built to last
- Welded high-grade steel for good quality material
- Made to handle weighty cast iron cookware for more cooking
- Legs fold beneath for compact storage making it easy to store.
- Some customers said that although the equipment is good, it is not light enough for the easy transport they are looking for. These complaints though are very few.
This item makes the perfect multipurpose cooking unit for outdoors. Adjustable legs indicate you can cook on whatever terrain and remain level. Two hot burners provide you with the ability to cook various styles at once. Go frying pan, dutch oven, stock pot, and go for quick, intense heat. Put on the Grill Box, and you are grilling up to over 500 degrees. Lower the temp and choose the griddle for flat cooking. Enjoy the outdoors with your friends with cooking versatility.
- The perfect outdoor griddle and grill for whatever event. Easy portable set-up, no assembly needed, ready-to-use in just seconds. Great for camping, tail gating, hunting, and the back yard!
- Versatile cooking choices. With a built-in gas griddle and grill, you can barbecue and cook however you like. Cook different food all at once. One burner features 15,000 BTUS and is capable of 20,000 BTUS as well.
- Configure it however you want. Remove the grill or griddle or both. This lets you place pans and pots directly over the burner. Good for boiling water or utilizing cast iron pans and pots.
- Heavy-duty grill box with handle, vent, and sturdy cast iron grill grates.
- The grill is heavy.
There you have it – five magnificent portable camping grills that you can use while camping. Among the five, which one do I recommend? Well, if it comes to only one, then I would choose the Texsport Heavy-Duty Over Fire Camp Grill, simply because I love grilling by the camp fire.
Learn more Safe and healthy camping food list for your trip.
With features such as fire-retardant nylon material, ''no-see-um'' cotton mesh netting, and more, I am confident I will enjoy this product in whatever outdoor activity. It’s a heavy-duty portable steel campfire grill made to handle weighty cast iron cookware – which is what I want.
Check out this video about the Texsport Heavy-Duty Over Fire Camp Grill to get a good look at it:
We hope you enjoyed this post. Which one among the five products is your favorite? I would love to read your thoughts in the comments.