Best Portable Gas Grills
There are not many options for cooking on the go, thankfully the best option also happens to produce the best tasting food. The method of course is grilling and portable grilling is a competitive market with many different companies vying for your choice as the solutions.
Gas grilling is the main way to go for portability because they are much better self contained than pellet grills. You might purchase a portable grill for cooking on the go or maybe you just want a small easy to use grill for cooking when disaster strikes, the utility that a portable gas grill can provide is stupendous as long as its a quality product.
So with every company known for making grills making a showing along with general home appliance merchandiser’s making attempts it can be really difficult to find the best portable gas grill for you. We are going to take a deep dive into portable gas grilling so you know what to look for and what to avoid.
(4.1 / 5)
Side burners: 0
Total cooking space: 225 sq. in.
Primary cooking space: 194 sq. in
price scale 2.8/5
(3.6 / 5)
Side burner: 0
Total cooking space: 200 sq. in.
Primary cooking space: 200 sq. in
price scale 2.3/5
(4.1 / 5)
Side Burners: 0
Total cooking space: 145 sq. in.
Primary cooking space: 145 sq. in
price scale 2.9/5
(4.7 / 5)
Side Burner: 0
Total cooking space: 189 sq. in.
Primary cooking space: 189 sq. in
price scale 4.4/5
Char-Broil Patio Bistro
(4.2 / 5)
Side burners: 0
Total cooking space: 320 sq. in.
Primary cooking space: 240 sq. in
price scale 3.8/5
Short Descriptions of Best Portable Gas Grills
Coleman Sportster Grill
The Coleman Sportster is a grill made with those who enjoy the outdoor type of lifestyle with some pretty strong parts that help make up for the few issues that can arise. The best part about this grill is the powerful 11,000 BTU burner that makes this grill excel past many other when it comes to cooking outside. Grills with multiple burners have few issues in wind while most portable grills treat wind as a bit of a road block.
This one on the other hand gives you enough power to still get a good cook in relatively adverse circumstances. The second best part here is the collapsibility that allows this grill to stand up when you need it and also allows you to break it down to a suitcase style roll for easy mobility. The only issue here is that the wheels are not exactly designed to stay on which can be a bit of a pain if you do not take the steps to prevent this.
The porcelain enameled grate provides you with a nice cooking surface that is relatively non stick and also gives you 225 square inches of cooking area placing it on the high end for portable grilling solutions. The metal work is nothing to write home about however and you do not have a particularly stylish design to impress your friends when it is setup for use. If you don’t take care to set it up properly before turning it on you could also be in for a bit of a trial. Overall though if you are a fan of tailgating and camping this grill should suit your needs pretty well. Read full review
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Char-Broil Portable Grill
The Char Broil stainless steel portable grill matches up the strong materials with the experience in grill making that Char Broil provides. They make grills for every price range so it is no surprise that this grill stands well with the competition. Here we have a stainless steel cook box sitting on four legs that might need a raised surface to cook on yet still provides great tasting food as long as you use it properly.
Some customers are known to have regulator issues but that is only a small percentage and the only other issue might be trying to keep the flame going in windy conditions. Though for that the best way to cook with this grill thanks to its convection heating style is to slow cook on low heat with the lid closed.
Thanks to the 200 square inch cooking surface you can still make good meals for up to four people or so at a time as long as you keep these things in mind. the surface is also made of stainless steel like most of the primary components of this grill which gives it a step up when it comes to cleaning and removing meals easily in comparison to a normal grate.
This grill packs a burner that pumps out 10,000 BTU’s of heat putting it on a high pedestal when compared to the common portable grill burners. This is a really affordable grill that makes a great gift and is awesome as long as you don’t put it through too heavy use especially after that 90 day warranty runs its course. Read full review
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The Cusinart CGG-180T is a portable grill with a heavy emphasis on portabilitiy. Some customers might wish for a product that is more focused in multiple directions though with a price sitting under a hundred dollars beggars can’t be choosers.
Here we have a grill with a 145 square inch surface so you can fit four burgers, wings, and hot dogs, or sausages on it with little space to spare. A nice solution for whipping up a quick meal for a few people that can work inside or outside for anybody who is starved for space. The porcelain enameled grate is a nice touch that is a step above what you might expect in such an affordable grill.
The collapsible legs can also add a extra step if you need a bit of extra clearance to keep the surface underneath from getting too heated. The design is focused on portability and price so we end up with a bit too much plastic for a machine that will be operating at high temperatures. Thanks to the single burner operationg at 5,500 BTU’s you will get a fair amount of warning time pefore things start melting as that power puts it on the lower end even for portable gas grills.
It will take around ten to fifteen minutes to reach cooking heat so it is only a step quicker than using a charcoal grill. With three choices for colors you can kind of see that Cuisnart’s focus was more towards making a good looking marketable product over maximizing the value for this grill. Still it ends up being a solid contender on the portable grill market thanks to its low price, true portability, and the fact that it handles the basics of grilling pretty well. Read full review
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Weber 50060001 Q1000 Liquid Propane Grill
The Weber Q1000 is a portable grill made to stand the test of time and pump out great tasting meals as long as you own it with a focus on style and portability which allow this model to reach out to its relatively high price line for portable grilling and still present some nice value.
You have a 189 square inch grilling surface which does not sound like much, though thanks to the design it is not too hard to cook a full meal on this grill as long as you are not feeding too many people.
The single stainless steel burner has 8,500 BTU’s of power which is not too spectacular yet still adequate as long as you have an extra ten to fifteen minutes to wait for this machine to get rolling. With a cast aluminum build we have a good combination of strength in the build along with a lightweight material keeping this grill under thirty pounds for portability.
The porcelain enameled cast iron grill grate allows you to cook your meat without worrying about too much sticking also. The grate is also split in the middle so you can easily get to the mechanics underneath. It also opens up the door for some versatility with the griddle add on that you can purchase separately.
You might want to pick that up as well as the stand and cover which will push this grill combo to around $300 bucks though they are not required. We have a large handle and ergonomically designed grips so you traveling with this grill is a breeze. A really strong grill for the user who needs a sturdy stylish grill on the go. Read full review
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Char-Broil Patio Bistro
The Char Broil Tru-Infrared patio grill offers a bunch of really nice feature that make it great for the griller who does not need a ton of space. The highlight here like most grills is the burner and here we have a infrared burner that allows you to cook great tasting meals thanks to the even heat distribution and lack of flare ups that this provides. Look forward to grilling spectacular if a bit small meals that make up for this grills few shortcomings.
The biggest issue here is that this grill can be a bit hard to tame as far as the gas goes without a few upgrades to the O ring and control regulator that can lead to a build up of gas without any flame present that could lead to a monster flare up.
That is the only major issue however and outside of that we have a well designed grill with a temperature gauge on the lid, wheels for some good mobility, and a attention to detail that allows this grill to keep all of your tools close by.
This grill sits a bit above three feet so you have a simlar height to much higher priced grills and the only thing you are really missing here is a full stainless steel build and a bunch of space when it comes to the grilling area and storage space that you will find in higher end grills. As long as you keep up with maintenance this is a great purchase for those in the market for an affordable portable gas grill. Read full review
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This can be a very tricky area since you will find more brands competing in the portable grill market than any other grill market. The usual suspects who dominate the grilling game deliver strong machines that really highlight their experience. Meanwhile kitchen appliance companies offer machines that get the job done while fitting a bit better into the appeal of the rest of the kitchen.
As far as the quality of the cooking goes they will all be pretty similar though the grilling brands like Weber will offer more customization, and possible upgrades or replacements. Finding the right style and price combo will be more important than the brand most of the time.
Before we get into the material you have to decide which type of style you want for your portable grill. The most common design is a four legged style with the grill sitting on four short stubby legs. The biggest issue here is you will probably need to purchase a stand or find some place to sit your grill on as crouching down to handle your grill can be a bit of a pain.
Some of these grills have specially made stands and carts to purchase while others are better off placed on a table of some sort. The other type of portable grill generally sits at the same height as your standard grill. These include some type of collapsible base that often has wheels on one side and support on the other. Pricing does not change much between styles.
Since most portable gas grills cost under $200 dollars you are not going to find full stainless steel high quality builds even though these grills are so small. They are focused towards meals by any means necessary so they often include a mixed mash of elements. You generally want to look for at least a cast aluminum hood though stainless steel is better.
A heat resistant handle should be included so you don’t have to worry about handling the grill. You want to lean towards strong metal if possible and avoid paint because heat resistant paint is a spot that some portable grills fail to address. For the grill grates once again stainless steel is the best though porcelain coated cast iron is also a good solution. These grates will help with meals sticking and allow for easier cleaning.
The one thing you know does not come with a portable grill is a expansive cooking surface. You need to get used to the idea of not being able to cook for more than around four people at a time if portability is a concern.
Some of these grills do have warming areas, but the main cooking surface probably will not surpass around 250 square inches which will limit you to around twelve burgers tops. The surfaces break into three tiers for eight, ten and twelve respectively. These tiers sit around 160, 200, and 250 square inches so try to go as high as you can afford.
You can probably leave off the plural for this section as most portable gas grills only come with a single burner for heating the entire surface. You can even find Infrared burners which will give you a more even cook. This about the best you can do as long as you can find it in the right style. Most grills use a standard stainless steel burner and you need to make sure your grill has that at the minimum.
As far as the power of the burner goes they will range from 7,000 to 12,000 BTU’s where 8,500 is good enough though more can help. Since these grills are so small grease can be a bit of an issue so infrared definitely wins here because flare ups can be especially dangerous on a small grill.
This is a pretty good area for portable grills in comparison to the rest of the grilling market. Pretty much every grill will give you a two year warranty which is nice for products under $200 dollars. Some will offer a three year and others are even better. If having a strong warranty is really important to you then you will want to look towards the main grill brands such as Weber, and Char Broil.
Whether you need to cook on the go or you just need a solid grill for your bachelor pad it is never a bad idea to have a portable grill on hand. With that in mind the market is full of competition and it is hard to find any particular grill that rises to the top. Your main focus in purchasing your grill should be finding the style that works for you with strong weather resistant handles.
If you can find an infrared portable grill with a nice surface area that does not require a stand for a nice price with a good warranty you are probably looking at the perfect portable grill. However some will just like a small grill that works well and you can sit on a raised surface. For these you just want to make sure the materials are of good quality.