Updated April 22, 2021
If there’s one thing we learned in 2020, it’s that the outdoors are awesome. Many of us new that before, but with so many other businesses closed last year, there weren’t a lot of ways to have fun inside and that led more people to head out the door to look for alternative ways to socialize and get out of the house. Whether you’re new to what mother nature has to offer or you’re a seasoned outdoor enthusiast, this list of grills will help you find the best one for your needs in 2021.
1. Weber Q1200
If you’re into barbecuing at home, this grill basically looks like a miniature version of your average gas-powered barbecue. And it’s just as versatile, with a built-in temperature gauge, cast iron cooking grates, and a domed lid to increase volume. It’s the perfect size to set up on a picnic table or the tailgate of a truck, and it can handle everything from a basic hot dog roast to an entire chicken. Coming in at around $200, this is a great option for tailgaters and campers alike.
Available at Amazon from $209
Pros: this grill is nonstick (just like your pans at home), can grill up to 18 large hamburgers at once, and each burner can be independently adjusted. Cons: the name is so long it will be impossible to tell your buddies how to get their hands on one. This grill comes with a bit more cooking space than the Weber, and that comes at a premium. At $419, it is a little more expensive than the Weber but if you want to grill up that 18th burger, this is the grill for you.
Available at Amazon from $419
Z Grills is quickly becoming a market leading grill manufacturer thanks to their high-quality wood pellet smokers. Their 2021 series has a few different sizes and features, but the 450B Wood Pellet Grill has everything you need from a pellet grill/smoker. The grill is perfect for RVing and camping season. It is super consistent with reliable temperatures, giving you a clean cookout every time. It’s functional & durable, and makes a great addition to the backyard when you’re not on the road.
An outdoor favorite right here. The Eureka SPRK Camp Grill is one of the best portable grills on the market. It comes with a grease catcher that makes it super easy to clean. The size is perfect for grilling about 4-6 burgers. You’ll love the adjustable feature if you have an uneven surface. Pick this one up before your next trip.
Another grill with a catchy name, this electric grill offers 156 square inches of cooking space and is made of stainless steel. If a bomb-proof grill isn’t enough for you, it is also equipped with a ceramic flavorizer, which is designed to vaporize greases, marinades, and juices, adding even more flavor to your already-delicious camping meal. This grill comes in at $499.
Available at Amazon from $499
This grill looks great, offers more cooking space than any of the previous grills, and can be used both inside and outside. All that wrapped in a package that retails for under a hundred bucks. Since it’s electric, it is perfectly safe to use inside, meaning you can fry up your morning bacon in your apartment with the same grill you take on your camping trips.
Available at Amazon from $109
This grill is the best choice for anyone looking to go camping with their family. And I’m talking about the entire family. Mom, dad, the husband or wife and kids, the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and really whoever else wants to come. Camp Chef’s website claims that this grill can prepare food for 50-100 people per hour, and the 600 square inch cooking surface is by far the largest of any of these grills. This grill can not only be used as, well, a grill, but also as a way to boil large amounts of water.
If cooking with electricity or propane isn’t your thing, this charcoal grill from Solo Stove is the one for you. It is compact, incredibly easy to set up, and includes a removable ash pan and cooking grate, so it’s easy to clean. It is mainly designed to be set up on the ground, with a 22-inch cooking height optimized for your favorite camping chair. At $599, it includes some charcoal, a spatula, tongs, meat fork, protective cover, and carrying case.
This grill by Cuisinart is another gas grill that is incredibly compact. That means it is easy to use pretty much anywhere, from the back of the car while your camping to the nearest picnic table. Though it is compact, it can be used to cook substantial meals for the whole family, with an eight-hamburger cooking capacity. Prices on this grill vary, but they tend to go for around $120.
This tabletop grill is unique from the rest since it is essentially a miniature pellet stove, which means it gives the food prepared on this grill a unique wood-smoked flavor. It has short legs that make it perfect for tailgating, tables, or stumps, and the keep-warm mode allows you to keep your food ready to eat for hours.
This is the ultimate grill for the backpacker or camping minimalist who wants all the advantages of having a grill far from where they parked the car. This tiny grill folds out to provide a cooking surface over any fire and can be set up in seconds. Though it is tiny, it can support up to 30 pounds of food, leaving very few limits to this compact option. For anyone wanting to carry less and cook more, this is well worth the $99 price tag.
This pizza oven does one thing extremely well- make great tasting pizza. This is an awesome addition to any car camping setup if you already have one of the aforementioned portable grills, and is pretty much the opposite of the Wolf Grizzly. If you’re craving pizza on your camping trips, it’s going to be hard to find a better option than this, as it cooks fresh pizzas in about a minute after the stove has been heated. Having pizza in the woods comes at a premium, with this pizza oven coming in at $499.
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Jeremy Alderman is an outdoor enthusiast in Scottsdale, Arizona. He writes on all things camping, hiking, outdoor sports, and travel. His weekends are often filled exploring the desert with his wife Madison and their 3-year-old German Shepherd rescue, Grace. His favorite spot in all of North America is the Oregon Coast.