The Joy of Grilling!
By Kathie FitzPatrick and Douglas Roberts
The barbeque . . . there’s nothing quite like it! There is no doubt that grilling is a favorite way of cooking, and part of our way of life not just in the USA, but in much of the rest of the world as well!
People Love Grilling!
People love to grill meats, vegetables and corn on the cob! There is something about it that adds a festive flare to any occasion, and often brings the liveliness of the outdoors into our dinners and other celebrations!
Need some creative ideas for grilling? Try this info from “Grill Mates,” from McCormick: http://bit.ly/2NG49an
Creative ideas for grilling are endless! You might want to explore ideas for marinades for your favorite cuts of meat. Explore creative combinations adding green salads and fruit salads to your table with your favorite grilling creations! You can Google your heart out on these topics, believe me!
Let’s Take a Look at Some of the Top 10 Favorite Grills from Amazon
Best Outdoor Grills: Top 10 Gas Grills
Considering a new outdoor grill for your deck, porch, patio, or backyard? The choices are many and varied. But be forewarned. The seemingly unlimited choices could lock you into an endless loop of possibility. You can easily waste hours – even days – in your search. But wouldn’t this time be better spent enjoying a delicious barbecued meal with friends and family instead? I think so!
We’ve narrowed the field for you. Below is our selection of the best outdoor grills we’ve discovered. These are the top 10 gas grills we found based on our experience and that of other buyers. You might say this is also a favorite’s list from Amazon. Which one will be the best fit for you? Well that depends on your specific needs.
Choosing the right gas grill makes meal preparation easier and more convenient. This in turn means you’ll use your new grill more often to savor the flavors unique to outdoor cooking.
Number One: Napoleon Gas Grill
Napoleon is a quality brand of grills and it’s evident from every detail on this model.
Fans of outdoor grilling love this barbecue because it gives you everything – quality, performance and style. It’s a considerable size too at 26.2 inches x 64.2 inches x 50.2inches and weighing in at a solid 188 pounds.
ideal for large family get-togethers and party hosting. But of course, you could also use it for smaller family meals anytime you want.
The Napoleon Prestige 500 features 48,000 BTUs and 500 in.² of primary cooking area. There are four main burners (all heavy-duty grade stainless steel) one infrared rear burner, and one infrared side burner as well. It’s a sizable grill that can handle up to 30 burgers at once.
Napoleon is known for its quality and a big part of that is the high-grade stainless steel used in construction. But that’s not all. Quality, it seems, is engineered into every detail like the wave-style cooking grill grid. It’s a unique design to Napoleon that provides a more even heating across the entire grill area.
This model is essentially a full outdoor kitchen. It comes with side shelves and an integrated towel bar. But what sets the Napoleon apart are the two interior halogen lights and illuminated controls, making evening grilling fun and safe.
One side of the grill contains the infrared side burner – which is excellent for getting a steakhouse quality sear on those prime cuts of meat, or to prepare side dishes or sauces. The other side provides counter space for food prep, utensils, spices, and sauces. This side also folds down for easier storage, or to make the grill a little more compact.
With the charcoal smoker tray, you can convert your Napoleon Prestige 500 to a charcoal grill -and grill directly over charcoal – whatever you want. This is an even more enticing way to enjoy this grill!
* * * * * *
Number two: Napoleon Prestige Pro 500 Natural Gas Grill -Stainless Steel
The Prestige Pro 500 Natural Gas model features the same quality construction Napoleon is known for. One such detail that caught my eye was the easy roll casters that come as standard equipment on this model.
On a lesser brand, something as seemingly simple as moving a barbecue around on a deck or patio can be a major challenge, particularly with even a slightly uneven grade. Large barbeques in general are bulky and awkward to move about. But this process is much easier with a quality piece of equipment, like those made by Napoleon.
Everything about the Napoleon Prestige Pro 500 speaks quality and performance. Another difference you’ll notice (if you’ve owned lower-end grills in the past) is that when you do you have to move it around, you won’t get that hollow, tinny sound with the Napoleon Grill that you get with cheaper brands.
This grill comes equipped with an integrated cutting board, ice bucket, and attached side shelves for condiments or food preparation. There’s also a handy towel holder for quick cleanups. Also, there are night light control knobs and interior lighting for entertaining after dark.
One thing that really sets Napoleon apart is the heavy gauge stainless steel burners. On cheaper grills, low-grade materials are often deployed to keep the price low. The problem is that these tend to rust out far too soon. Heavier duty materials means your grill will last considerably longer. Multiple users report using their Napoleon grills for about 10 years whereas cheap brands often need replacing after 2-3 years.
Prestige Pro retains heat exceptionally well. This is due to its double-walled lid that lets very little heat escape. It actually turns your grill into a virtual oven. To turn it into a smoker, just add a smoker tube and wood chips.
With six burners and 80,000 BTUs of grilling power – this thing is a beast. Buyers love the even heat distribution on their Napoleon. The fact that it uses propane efficiently requiring fewer refills is an added bonus! Love this grill. Let the party begin!
* * * * *
Number Three: Weber 45010001 Spirit Outdoor Gas Grill
This three-burner Weber Grill Spirit provides an opportunity to step up to the quality of the Weber brand at an affordable price. If you’re looking for a quality grill yet one that’s easy to move around from place to place, the Weber Spirit is one of the best portable gas grills you’ll find anywhere. Weber is one of the most popular brands of grills, with a growing legion of fans around the world.
The overall size of this model is 52 x 26 x 57 inches. It weighs in at 110 pounds. The Spirit features 32,000 BTUs and a 424 in.² of primary grilling space. With an electronic ignition switch, this barbecue fires up instantly.
The Weber Spirit also boasts reversible cooking grates to provide greater versatility, while allowing you to be more creative in how you use your grill. The thin side of the grill is best for delicate foods like fish, shrimp and other seafood. On the flipside, wider grill creates a thicker sear that locks in the juices creating an explosion of deliciousness with every bite.
One of the things buyers love about their Weber grill is the way it contains grease and uses this otherwise wasteful by-product to enhance the flavor of foods. As grease drips down from the grill, it lands on “flavorizer” bars below. These bars evaporate the grease into smoke, allowing that glorious smoky flavor to penetrate deep into the food on the grill. At the same time, this process minimizes any remaining grease as it gets funneled into a collection tray you can easily clean or replace as needed.
The side table folds down easily allowing you to use the grill in a slightly smaller area. With a grill lid that’s available in four different colors (sapphire red, classic black, white, and blue) yours is sure to stand out and be the envy of the neighborhood. Another smart design feature is the gas tank mount on the outside of the grill, making it much easier to access and remove for refueling.
This baby fires up right away and the whole grill heats up incredibly fast. it can be a little awkward moving it around, as it is with any sizable and heavy grill.
With minimum flare-ups due to the built-in grease management system – it’s hassle-free and easy grilling.
One criticism of the Weber Spirit is the low-grade wheels supplied with the unit. Clearly Weber cut costs here and liked considered it a minor detail, assuming most people set the grill up once and leave it in place more or less. But if your plans are for a more mobile grilling experience, you may want to replace those plastic wheels with something more solid.
Amazon Claims this is one of their #1 Best Sellers. We’ll let you be the judge!
- * * * *
Number Four: Weber Genesis Natural Gas Grill 66010001
Here’s another Weber Grill that’s easy to use and produces stellar results every time – even if you don’t have much grilling experience. Like other Webers, this one heats up fast and this heat is spread across the grill evenly – allowing for full grill use at a fairly consistent temperature. The Genesis measures 32 inches x 33 inches x 26inches and weighs about 150 pounds.
This model is available in two different formats – one for natural gas and one for liquid propane All are equipped with porcelain-enameled “Flavorizer Bars”, so flare-ups are rare and comparatively minor to other grills we’ve used. The added bonus is that you get that heavenly smoky flavor cooked right into your food. Isn’t that the way it should be with every grilled dish?
The Weber Genesis grill features three stainless steel burners – each of which are operated independently. You could use one burner to sear your food and another to cook it at a much lower temperature. Primary grilling space measures in at 513 square inches – a good size and one that would serve the needs of most consumers. There’s also a warming rack for buns and keeping cooked food warm prior to serving.he need
I don’t understand Manufacturers claiming a total cooking area that includes the warming rack. While the warming rack may be somewhat useful, chances are, you’re never going to be grilling anything from this elevated location. Why promote the “total cooking area”? I can only assume it’s an attempt by manufacturers to make their grills sound bigger than they really are from a practical standpoint. To be fair, Weber isn’t the only manufacturer to do this. Most do. But it’s annoying nonetheless.
The main burners produce 37,500 BTUs of grilling capability, and there’s no doubt that this is a quality piece of cooking equipment. It’s easy to use and delivers a high level of user satisfaction. With consistent heating and controlled flare-ups, you don’t need to constantly stand by as your food cooks. This grill literally allows you to “set it and forget it” – at least until your meal is ready to be devoured.
What may be its best attribute is that it heats evenly and consistently. It’s those heavy cooking grates on the Weber Genesis that are responsible for the excellent heat retention. This is important advantage when you’re working with a full grill of food.
* * * *
Number Five: Dynomighty Gas Grill
Here’s a little-known brand you don’t see around much. But I included it here for mostly for the value it offers. The Dynomighty Gas Grill measures 51.18 inches long by 24.6 inches wide by 47.05 inches high, weighs in at 132 pounds and is fueled by a standard 20 gallon liquid propane tank. The Dynomighty is a powerhouse that serves up a significant 62,000 BTUs of cooking power. And with a primary cooking area is 530 square inches – it’s big enough to meet the requirements of most families.
It features five main stainless steel burners, plus a side burner. The heavy-gauge stainless steel used on the cooking grates distributes heat evenly and consistently and prevents most foods from sticking to the grill.
With a built-in electronic ignition, firing up the Dynomighty grill is push-button simple. To keep the heat inside where it should be, the hood consists of a double-layered construction. Additionally, there’ a built-in thermostat, so you can easily monitor the temperature under the hood while cooking.
The downside of the Dynomighty is that it’s a no-name brand – one that most people have never heard of. But that could mean scoring a decent grill at significant savings.
- * * * *
Number Six: Coleman RoadTrip 285 Portable Stand-Up Propane Grill
Best portable Gas Grill
Coleman is a well-known brand name in the camping (think Coleman stove) and sports equipment world. And while it’s not as well known in the grilling world, by all accounts, the RoadTrip measures up to the Coleman name for reliability.
The RoadTrip 285 Portable Stand-Up Propane Grill measures 30.2 inches x 19.2inches x 16.1 inches and weighs 46.7 pounds. It boast 20,000 BTUs of grilling power over a 285 square inch cooking space, with three burners, each independently controlled. It runs on portable 16-ounce liquid propane cylinders. There’s also an optional connecting hose and valve to use with a standard 20 pound- propane tank.
A drip pan below the grill captures grease and is easily removed for cleaning or replacing as required.
Coleman’s RoadTrip also features two durable side tables for utensils, sauces, or plates and the built-in hood thermometer provides accurate an reading of interior temperatures. With the built-in push-button start, you’ll never again need to search for matches or a lighter to fire-up your grill.
A cool advantage offered with this model is the interchangeable cooking tops. This means you can not just grill – but griddle – too.
Portability is what makes this one an excellent purchase. The Coleman is built on stable, quick-folding legs for easy set up and take-down and it’s relatively light. It features two wheels for moving it around and taking it with you for grilled meals on the go. As one user reported, this one rolls around like a suitcase. This makes it ideal for a camping trip, or to take to the cottage or trailer park for a terrific grilling experience wherever you want. It’s also perfect for tailgating, picnicking, or for packing in the trunk and taking it to a friends house.
A lot of these portable gas grills only have one or two burners. But the Coleman RoadTrip 285 is a standout with its three separate burners. This grill is probably not an ideal replacement for larger grill designed to stay in one place. But for quality, reliability, and portability – it’s hard to beat a Coleman.
While the Coleman 285 also has convenient slide-out side tables large enough to hold food or utensils – these are made of plastic – and therefore, not capable of holding up to the temperature of a hot pot or pan.
- * * * *
Number Seven – Weber 540-6001 Liquid Propane Grill
It heats up fast and reaches temperatures over 600 Fahrenheit, as you would expect from a quality gas grill. And for the money – this is a solid purchase. It delivers that outdoor grilling flavor experience and a brand-name grill – at a budget-friendly price.
Fully operational, this one measures 26 inches high by 51.4 inches wide by 25.1 inches deep. With the lid closed, it’s only 15 1/2 inches high. Complete, the Q2200 weighs about 42.5 pounds.
This Weber Q2200 has one stainless steel burner triggered by an electronic ignition – producing 12,000 BTUs of heat over 280 square inches of cooking area. Like all Webber models these days, it comes with porcelain-enameled cast-iron cooking grates that hold the heat. Porcelain grills are easier to clean than other types. It just takes a little elbow grease and some soap and water.
To lighten the weight of the Q2200, the body and lid are now made of cast aluminum, and the lid features a built-in thermometer. It also comes with folding side tables and a removable catch pan for grease.
The split cooking grate accommodates additional cooking options. You can use the standard grate, griddle – or both. This expands your grill’s versatility considerably and makes it more usable for all three main meals.
The Weber Q 2200 has been remodeled to become even more user-friendly. This means it now features larger control knobs, solid-grip handle, ergonomic side handles, and large fold-out tables that offer greater stability then this model’s predecessor ever did.
One big advantage is this one’s easy to pack up and take with you. Even easier to load in the trunk of a car. And materials used to make this grill seem to stand up the rusting better than many competing brands.
For couples or singles – even small families – this grill can be all you need. It’s ideal for taking on weekend camping trip, or for going to a friends house. And it’s just as good for quick weeknight meals too.
One not-so-great feature on this model is that the fuel intake mount happens to be under the grill – at the front of the unit. This makes it pretty much impossible to use the grill on a tabletop. So wherever you take the grill, be sure you always have the stand with you as well.
To purchase this favorite 540 Weber Gas Grill on Amazon click here:
- * * * *
Number Eight: Dyna-Glo DGB390SNP-D Smart Space Living 36,000 BTU 3-Burner LP Gas Grill
- This medium priced grill earned an Amazon Best choice award!
- (1) Nice quick start: Easy push button electronic pulse ignition system ensures quick start-up; 390 sq in of primary cooking space; 507 sq in of total cooking space. Nice size for most cooks.
- (2) Cast Iron cooking grates: Heavy gauge porcelain enameled cast iron cooking grates retain heat to sear foods and lock in foods natural juices to make for optimal results.
- (3) Heat tents protect burners. Stainless steel commercial grade straight burners for performance and durability (3) Steel Heat tents protect the burners and flavor foods
- Control valve options: Infinite control valve options provide flexibility and the best grilling performance and experience
- Side bar shelves: Double wall stainless steel lid assembly to retain heat includes temperature gauge; Side shelves with integrated towel bar and tool hooks
- Cover sold seperately: Protect your grill with a custom fit Dyna-Glo premium cover, Model # DG300C (sold separately)
Amazon review from an owner of this grill:
I also liked the tapered grease tray that funnels all the drippings to one catch pan. The drip plan and catch pan can be slide out for cleaning.”
- To puchase this Dyna Glo dgb 390 snp on Amazon click here:
* * * *
Number Nine: Nexgrill Five Burner Propane Gas Grill
Nexgrill is another brand you may or may not be aware of. But based on observation and experience, it’s worth considering as your next purchase. The size of this grill is as follows: the depth is 25 inches, height 46.75 inches, and the width is 52 inches, fully assembled and operational.
If you’re looking for a full-size grill that’s capable of handling most tasks easily, this one measures up on multiple counts. It has most of the standard features that come with grills of this size – and some optional add-ons like a full rotisserie as well.
Like all grills that you assemble yourself, this one requires patience. But surprisingly, it seemed to go together easier than most of these appliances I’ve put together over the years.
Nexgrill offers a decent product at a reasonable mid-range price. If there’s a downside to this grill it is that it’s made of a lesser grade of stainless steel. Looks outstanding on the floor of the store – and when you first get it home and set up in place. But lower grades of stainless steel just don’t last as long. They tend to rust out and age faster then say a Weber or Napoleon grill.
* * * *
Number Ten: Char Broil Performance 475 4 Burner Cart Liquid Propane Gas Grill
Char-broil makes a decent quality grill and in this case it’s a four burner, 36,000 BTU gas grill that comes with a 10,000 BTU side-burner – complete with lid.
It’s a standard full-size barbecue designed in cart style. With porcelain coated cast-iron grates and a primary cooking area of 18.25 inches x 24.75inches. It’s capable of grilling 20 burgers at once, it’s more than adequate for most families. Included is a warming rack designed to swing out-of-the-way when not in use.
This is a stylish-looking grill, complete with stainless steel lid, control panel and handle. If you take good care of it, there’s no reason why this couldn’t serve you well for several years.
Char-Broil also features a removable grease pan that can be cleaned or emptied or changed quickly. you also get 4 stainless steel burners offering a wide range of temperatures and precision control. And like most grills, the folding lid also features a temperature gauge to monitor the interior heat before and during your grilling experience.
With an electronic ignition, fast and consistent start-ups is something you can count on with the Char-Broil. Two wheels on one and make it a little easier to move around – but moving any full-size grill isn’t much fun. They’re just too bulky and awkward for the most part.
One thing to note here is that the side-burner with lid is actually quite useful. You can use the burner as you would on any grill to sear meat prior to cooking at a lower temperature, or to prepare side dishes or sauces. But the smart addition that Char-Broil added was the burner cover. for when it’s not in use. This gives you additional counter space for prepping, or for various utensils or spices – that sort of thing.
This is one of the simpler grills to assemble on your own. All it takes is a wrench and a screwdriver and perhaps an hour or two of your time, from box to ready-to-grill. It heats up quickly and does a quality job of cooking your food too. It’s also big enough to enable indirect cooking (try pizza cooked this way) where the flame is not directly under the food.
As with a lot of girls that are not at the high-end of the market, this one has a few minor flaws such as the low quality of the wheel and axle assembly. If you’re not planning to move the barbecue around constantly, this may not be a concern for you. But the thin axle and cheap wheels are parts you may want to replace if you will be moving your grill around from time to time.
Amazon Purchase Reviews
“This is a great grill. I bought it to replace a beautiful Tuscany Grill that lasted me ten years. However, there were certain parts that rusted out in the Tuscany, largely because there was no place for the drippings to go, and those parts were not available for replacement. I’m hoping the configuration of this Char Broil grill will help prevent that. Don’t be put off by the mechanically-disinclined here to complain the grill is hard to assemble. I am a 62-year-old woman with a partial spinal fusion, and I assembled this grill by myself in 1.5 hours. It only takes a screw driver and a wrench. I’ve been cooking with it for a couple of weeks now – it heats up quickly and does an excellent job of cooking your food without incinerating it. It’s also large enough that you can do off-set grilling (high heat, without flame directly under your food). I was lucky enough to buy this on a super sale price and I couldn’t be happier with it.”
- * * * *
- I bought this grill and it was delivered in a timely fashion. It was easy to assemble. I have been cooking on it practically every night and it seems to distribute heat evenly across the surface. I would recommend this grill to anyone who would like a nice inexpensive grill that works great and looks good too.
- * * * *
There you have it! The top 10 favorite and best natural gas grills, best portable grills, liquid propane grills, and even best gas grills under $400, available on Amazon. You are bound to find a winner here that is just right for you and your budget!