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Types of Grills for Your Next Barbecue

Types of Grills for Your Next Barbecue

Ask any passionate griller about their favorite type of grill, and you’ll hear a monologue as to why their preferred approach is best. Some stand by the distinct smokiness that charcoal grills provide. Others champion the balance of ease and flavor found in gas grills. And still, others prefer the simplicity and portability that electric grills offer. But what’s the best type of grill for you? Below are all the details you’ll need on these three types of grills so you can figure out what’s best for your next backyard barbecue.

Charcoal Grill

If your aim is for flavor, pay close attention to charcoal grills. Cooking with charcoal requires extra work because you can’t flip a switch and toss the food on, unlike a gas or electric grill. Instead, you need to prep charcoal briquettes. Since there’s no temperature control, you’ll also think about managing the eventual flames.

Charcoal: A Smoky Flavor

While some people don’t like the taste of charcoaled foods, it’s undeniably tempting for many others. Intense and smoky, foods cooked over hot coals have a distinct flavor when compared to food cooked on other types of grills. Another unique benefit of cooking on a charcoal grill is the unique smokiness you get by adding different wood chips on top of the briquettes. Applewood, hickory, and mesquite wood chips impart their own distinctive flavors, so have fun experimenting.

Is a Charcoal Grill Right for You?

Charcoal grills are best for dedicated crafters that want to take their grilled food to the next level. Managing coals isn’t easy—it takes technique and practice—but the payoff is irresistible once you have it down. Sizzling sears and a distinct smokiness await those with the patience to grill on charcoal.

Another benefit? Great charcoal grills are incredibly affordable.

All in all, cooking on charcoal outdoor grills takes some practice and preparation, but once you taste a steak cooked over hot coals, it’s well worth the work. See our guide to How to Cook a Steak on Your Charcoal Grill for details.

Gas Grill

If you want the classic flame-kissed flavor without the nuances of cooking with charcoal, a gas grill might be more your speed. An outdoor gas grill connects to a propane tank which is easy to operate.  You simply turn the valve, which lights the flame. A good gas grill also comes with temperature controls, so controlling the flame is akin to operating a kitchen stove. This simplicity makes a gas grill perfect for people that love grill-seared steaks but don’t have the time to deal with finicky coal briquettes. See How to Cook a Steak on a Gas Grill for details.

Gas Grill Features

Gas grills are a time-honored tradition in backyard barbecues. However, they take a more practical approach, balancing flavor with portability and ease of use. As the most popular approach to grilling food, outdoor gas grills come in all shapes, sizes, and configurations. You can get them with cutting boards and additional burners on the side, which you can use to prepare other kinds of food. With the right model, you can cook every dish on your menu for a sizable crowd, all without leaving your post.

Is a Gas Grill Right for You?

If you’re looking for a balance between simplicity and flavor in your backyard barbecues, a gas grill might be your best bet. While you’ll need to fill your propane tank regularly, a full tank typically lasts the entire summer. In most cases, gathering family and friends for a barbecue means more time chatting and eating delicious food and less time grilling.

Electric Grill

An electric grill is an excellent choice if you want a tasty grilled flavor in a more compact and portable package. While electrical grills won’t give you the same nostalgic taste of a gas grill or the smoky aroma of charcoal, the best electric grills are still capable of singeing caramelized sears into your favorite meats and veggies.

A high-quality electric outdoor grill is also incredibly convenient. As long as you have access to an electric outlet, you can take it anywhere, even the garage.

Electric: Take Your Grill with You

Electric grills are handy if you’re looking for a portable grill. Electrical grills are usually smaller, perfect for smaller spaces such as patios or apartment balconies. They are also ideal for environments where large open flames are not permitted. An electric grill needs to be near an electrical outlet; extension cords may be helpful to reach an outlet safely.

Is an Electric Grill Right for You?

Electric grills are fantastic alternatives to gas and charcoal grills if you need a simple, easy, and low-maintenance way to add some searing to your favorite meats and vegetables. They’re also extra portable and easy to load up and take on the road. If you intend to do a lot of grilling away from home and have access to electrical outlets, an electric grill is a perfect companion.

Are you a champion of flavor, determined to master the art of charcoal grilling? Maybe you’re more of a utilitarian backyard barbecuer. Or perhaps you’d instead go with portability and simplicity above all else. Whatever the case, find your desired indoor and outdoor grills online at Overstock for your perfect summer companion.