The Best Propane Grills for Every Purpose and Price Range 2021

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Last Updated on October 14, 2021

Grilling is hands down the best way to cook meat. Everybody has their own opinions on what kind of sauces to use (if any), how long to cook the meat, and even what kind of grill to use, but pretty much no matter what you do as long as you don’t burn the meat, it will turn out great.

In this case “what kind of grill” is the propane grill, which has a number of natural advantages and disadvantages over charcoal and wood.

Jim Bob
A long-time contributor to GrillBabyGrill. Jim has had a lifelong relationship with the art of grilling, passed on from his father and grandfather to him.
how to grill steak on charcoal grill

What You Need to Know About Propane

There’s really only three questions you need to ask yourself when buying a propane grill: how big, how hot, and how fancy do I want it?

Size

How big you want your grill is going to vary by how big of a crowd you’re usually cooking for. For the average household of about four people, 450 to 500 square inches should work just fine. You also want to keep an eye out that your propane gas grill has enough burners to support whatever size you end up getting. You’re looking for three burners at that size, and an extra burner for about every 100 square inches you add to the size.

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Heat

The standard measure for heat on most appliances is the British Thermal Unit (BTU). It’s especially important for cooking that you can hit and sustain the right number for your volume. Some might tell you bigger and hotter is always better, but like with anything it really depends on what you’re doing.

Accessories

This is where you ask yourself whether you want nice extras like a side burner for heating sauces, a smoker attachment, rotisserie, extra counter space, tool racks, and things of that nature.

Accessories are varied and usually optional, so it’s really up to what you think you’ll need. If an accessory comes included in the grill I’ll generally point it out as a plus, but keep in mind that it does add a bit to the price, so if you want to save a little money on something you don’t need, you can try to find the same grill in its most bare bones model.

Read also:Tips for safe grilling

Our Top Choice

  • Cooks evenly. Perfect size. 10 year 100% Weber Guarantee.
  • Ignition is flawless, controls feel solid
  • It gets hot quickly- up to ~500 degrees in a few minutes
  • Assembly was easy and cooks evenly
The Process

Image

Product

Price

Weber 45020001 Spirit II E-310

Weber 45020001 Spirit II E-310

BEST CHOICE

  • Ignition is flawless, controls feel solid
  • It gets hot quickly- up to ~500 degrees in a few minutes
  • Assembly was easy and cooks evenly
Check on Amazon

Char-Broil Classic 360

Char-Broil Classic 360

RUNNER UP

  • Excellent for price; not too hard to assemble
  • Less work in cleanup and maintenance
  • Portable and can take to camping easily
Check on Amazon

Blackstone 1554

Blackstone 1554

VALUE CHOICE

  • Versatile and can cook almost anything.
  • Serves as an effective replacement for a stove.
  • Save gas by using few burners at once.
Check Price on Amazon

Top 8 Best Gas Grills Reviews for 2021

1. Best overall – Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill and Smoker

Why you’ll love this:

This is a very nice propane grill; one of the Spirit models with all the trimmings. It includes everything you’d expect from a good propane grill: easy infinity ignition, two very high powered burners, flavorizer bars, and a grease management system that keeps everything easy to clean so you can get on with your life after cooking.

The power in particular is a standout feature, blowing past our expectations on how the heat from a burner should be distributed. All this at a great price means the Spirit II was an easy pick for our winner.

With three burners, the Spirit II might be the best propane grill for groups. Weber added knobs that control each burner and graphics that let you take a quick look down to see your temperature setting. You only need a slight touch to adjust the temperature for one or more burners at the same time.

With an assembly time of only three hours, the Spirit II can save you some time too. All the included instructions show you how to put the parts together and connect a propane tank. You can set this one up the same day that you cook for a crowd.

Between the grease management system and infinity ignition, using the grill is a breeze too. That ignition lets you send propane to the grill in seconds to cook faster, while the management system collects grease to prevent fires and flare-ups. In regards to fuel, if you’ll measure the fuel efficiency of this grill, then it’s certainly in the top tier.

With the flavorizer bars, you can add more flavor to foods too using a smoker box whether it is built-in or DIY. These bars sit inside the grill and right below the burner tubes to let you add more smoke. It also has an open design that gives you convenient access to all the grilling tools and supplies that you need.

Rather than rehashing the exact specifications, a quick rundown of why this grill is good is in order. While there are some grills that do some things better than this Weber, it is one of the best overall packages on the market. It is sized perfectly for the majority of people, being neither too large nor too small.

It uses a reasonable amount of gas by not trying to sell you on more heat output than you really need. It’s constructed of sturdy, long lasting materials that you don’t have to worry about rusting or rotting away on your patio, while being small enough to wheel in and out of a garage for storage if circumstances demand it as well.

It has a fair amount of table space without extending the arms so far that storage becomes a pain or it becomes impossible to fit on smaller porches.In short, the Weber Spirit is the perfect grill for the average person, with everything you need and nothing you don’t, choosing instead to execute well on the fundamentals rather than trying to sell you on gimmicks and extras.

Read full review: Weber Spirit ii E-310

2. Char-Broil Classic 360 3-Burner Liquid Propane Gas Grill

Why you’ll love this:

In comparison to our winner, this first seems like an odd choice for runner up. This is a very minimalist propane gas grill, with no real fancy features. It has a very rudimentary design, with thin and lightweight construction, but more than anything else: it gets the job done.

For such an inexpensive grill, this is a surprisingly rare quality. It’s built well enough to last, light enough to move, and with enough performance to cook anything you’d ever want, so if you find yourself with a tight budget or just lower needs, this is a great pick.

For family dinners and entertaining, you can’t go wrong with the 360 from Char-Broil, which features porcelain-coated grates. The grate found on the bottom offers 360 square inches of cooking space and places foods as close as possible to the heat source for fast and even heating. With the swing-a-way rack, you get an extra 170 square inches of cooking and warming space. That grate has a porcelain-coated surface too for easier cleaning.

Thanks to the three burners and control knobs, you can set up areas for different foods. This ensures that all foods come out perfectly cooked and lets you use more than one temperature as you grill. The control knobs are easy to reach as you stand next to the grill too.

Prepping for a cookout is easy thanks to the side shelves attached to the grill. Each shelf measures 12 by 13 inches and has a flat and level surface to keep bottles of marinades and other ingredients from falling over. Char-Broil used the same type of metal on the wheels as it did on the shelves. Those wheels make it easy to transport the grill to any spot in your yard.

3. Blackstone 1554 Propane Gas Burner Grill

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Why you’ll love this:

This griddle style propane gas grill is a great fit for anyone who needs as much surface area as possible for maximum cooking power. Griddle top grills are excellent for pretty much anything you’re care to do, save for slow cooking foods, making them good replacements for most kitchen appliances.

This particular model is a stellar example of the type, and brings solid cooking power with four burners and temperature zones, allowing for elaborate, complex meals to be prepared with ease.

A versatile and affordable outdoor range.

The best grill for making dishes that taste as they came from a professional restaurant kitchen is the 1554 Station from Blackstone. This looks just like the grills that you see on competition shows too. It offers tons of cooking space and lets you cook foods in different quadrants or all together.

One unique aspect of this grill is that it has a flat top rather than the grates found on other models. This creates a smooth and even surface that can accommodate all types of foods, including burgers and other traditional BBQ foods as well as the thin slices of meat and vegetables that are suitable for Mexican dishes.

As it comes loaded with storage, the Blackstone 1554 Station is the ultimate grill for entertaining too. Not only can you use the long shelf on the bottom for storage, but you can use the flat shelves on each side for prepping. It has attached wheels for easy moving of the grill too.

With four burners rather than three, the 1554 is a nice option for competitions. It lets you make meats and veggies and grill your buns at the same time.

4. Weber 51060001 Q1200 Liquid Propane Grill

Why you’ll love this:

The Weber Q series are some of the best portable gas grills on the market, and the Q1200 is no exception. While it’s not one of the best Q series models, it does have a much more reasonable price than many, with decent cooking power.

Primarily though, its strength lies in how durable and compact it is, while still allowing a compact tabletop model to provide extra utility in the form of the side tables and cast iron cooking grates, which add to the overall quality of the grill. A fine choice if you need a portable gas grill, though it’s no replacement for a full sized model.

The best you can get for camping with propane.

One of the best grills for those with small outdoor spaces is the Q1200 from Weber. It has a great design that lets you make all your favorite BBQ dishes without taking away space from your guests. Though the compact design makes this an easy grill to store, it gives you 189 square inches of cooking space.

Each side of the grill has a small table that is the perfect size for prepping veggies and other ingredients. Those shelves fold flat against the grill too when not in use. No matter where you want to store the grill, you’ll find that it can fit.

Fully assembled and ready to go right out of the box, this grill uses a simple AAA battery to run. It comes with cast iron cooking grates that have a porcelain enamel coating on top. That coating helps your food come away easily without sticking and makes the grates easy to clean.

Designed to work with small liquid propane cylinders, the Q1200 is a good grill for camping and tailgating too. You can take a few cylinders to make sure that you have enough gas to last for the weekend or more.

5. Coleman RoadTrip 285 Portable Stand-Up Propane Grill

green mountain davy

Why you’ll love it:

As far as portable propane gas grills go, this is an interesting one. If you want something with a built in cart that can be used at the same height as a normal grill, this has you covered.

Simultaneously it maintains a relatively compact profile when folded up, and takes up about as much space as a small suitcase. However, in terms of performance it falls well short of other models, with a two burner system that is simply too weak to properly provide heat for the entire oversized grilling space.

A great grill for use on campgrounds and tailgating.

You no longer need to spend a lot of money at restaurants when you take road trips because you can take this Coleman grill with you and cook anywhere you go. As one of the most portable grills, it weighs less than others and has a compact size that lets you store it in your trunk, the backseat or even on the roof of your car. It takes only minutes to set up when it’s time to cook.

With 285 square inches of cooking space and 20,000 BTUs, this grill lets you cook and start eating in less time than it would take to find a restaurant and place an order. It has three independent burners each controlled by a knob that lets you select the right temperature. There is also a push-button ignition start located between those knobs.

Thanks to the integrated thermometer, you can now test your meats without lifting the lid and letting the heat escape. It also has two side tables that you can use to keep your utensils nearby and for prepping. When cooking fatty cuts of meat, you’ll like that the water pan collects all that liquid for easy disposal.

We have the complete list of the best camping grills here.

6. Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet

PRO SERIES 22

Why you’ll love it:

Extraordinarily light and portable.

The bright red color of this grill will catch the eye when tailgating and make others come over to see what you have on the grates. That bright red finish is durable enough for daily and regular use and won’t peel or chip away from the surface. It uses shades of both red and silver to give it a sleek look too.

Designed for use on the go, the 180T comes with folding legs that provide stability to the grill and fold out of the way for storage. Weighing less than 14 pounds, this grill is easy to move because it folds to the shape of a briefcase. You can even use the handle to carry it as you would a suitcase.

With a porcelain grate inside that offers 145 square inches of cooking space, this grill can make up to cook burgers, 10 pieces of chicken or eight steaks at the same time and can also accommodate a full four pounds of fish and seafood. The porcelain enamel coated grates keep the 5,000 BTUs close to your food to help it cook evenly and properly. It also features a locking lid that keeps the lid securely shut.

7. Coleman Roadtrip 225 Portable Propane Grill

Cookshak

Why you’ll love it:

Small in price and size, but good value.

From tailgating in parking lots before the big game to cooking in campgrounds without power, this little Coleman grill can handle it all. It has a compact design that can fit into the trunk of your car but features all the cooking space that you need. When you lift the lid, you’ll see grates inside with 225 square inches of space for all your food.

Cooking for a crowd or a group is easy with this model because it features two burners that each have a control knob on the outside. Coleman added graphics that show you which way to turn each one to increase and decrease the heat. It also features a push ignition that brings the grill to life in seconds when you hook up a propane cylinder and press down on the button.

When it comes to cooking greasy and fatty foods, you’ll like the grease collection pan located on the base of the grill. All the grease and other liquids that fall off your foods will land in this pan. You can add some water to keep the grease from sticking and dump the pan when you finish cooking.

8. Broil King Porta-Chef 320 Propane Gas Grill.

Louisiana

Why you’ll love it:

One of the best grills for camping and tailgating comes from Porta-Chef. The 320 has three stainless steel burners and a total output of 18,000 BTUs, which makes it one of the strongest grills around. Thanks to the handy knobs on the front, you can easily increase and decrease the heat for each burner to cook multiple foods that all come out perfectly cooked at the same time.

Designed with portability in mind, this grill has legs that snap into place on the base. When you need to carry it, you can remove those legs, which will also reduce the overall size of the grill for convenient storage. The legs lock in place too when you set up the grill. Also included are metal shelves for prepping ingredients that fold flat.

Suitable for those who want to make amazing grilled dishes away from home, the 320 portable grill has six flames inside that provide heat to the grates through each of the three burners. It also features a linear flow valve that works in all weather conditions to keep the flames alive as the wind blows.

Read more: Making dry runs for your grill and smoker.

Other Products To Consider

Broil King

Broil King has very few products to choose from, so by default the Porta-Chef 320 is its best product. Thankfully that product is good, and fills a unique middle ground between small but weak portable grills and large but nearly immovable full size grills.

It’s functional enough to serve as your home grill, and is a great value for tailgating or camping on campgrounds or near a cabin (I wouldn’t lug one out into the woods, though).

The Porta-Chef is great for the person that just wants to buy one grill they can use in any circumstance, which is something you don’t see very often.

Char-Broil

Char Broil is a mainstay brand in affordable grills. The Classic 360 is the perfect example of this: no frills, slightly cheap construction, but good and serviceable fundamental design. It cuts corners where it’s safe to in order to lower the price, but keeps the quality up where it matters (in the grill grates and burners).

The Classic 360 is perfect for amateur grillers who just want something they can turn on, occasionally throw a burger or a steak onto, and enjoy a home grilled meal once in a while. It’s less good for true grilling aficionados, but it isn’t made for them.

Weber

Weber in general makes very high quality grills and grill supplies and attachments, and are one of the only brands of this relative quality readily available from major retailers. Many customers are satisfied when they purchase Weber grill, smokers, or a combo grilling machine. This makes them stand out among the more name branded competition like Char Broil and Broil King.

The Spirit II is no exception, being head and shoulders above any other grill you can find on Amazon or most other places without going to browsing specific manufacturers like Traeger, and have a price point that would tempt all but the most hardcore grillers to lower their standards just a little bit for all the money they could save on a grill that will do the job just as well, except without some of the extras rotisserie devices.

FINAL VERDICT

jim bob

These are all the propane grills we’re looking at today, but hopefully it gives a wide enough selection to allow everyone to make an informed choice no matter what your purpose.

We’ve got portable grills, home grills, and even grills that fall in between here, so there should be something for everyone. If you’re not sure what to get, the Spirit II is still your safest bet, being by far the highest quality here, but if you’ve got a specific preference anything here should do.

To make it even easier for you, we’ve also reviewed the top picks that suits your needs and budget: Best Gas Grill Under $200.

Pros and Cons of Propane Grills

Pros

  • Gas grills may come with side burners or smokers – These options make your grill versatile with the ability to cook diverse foods on the same appliance.
  • Healthier – Cooking over natural gas and propane does not emit carcinogens related to burning wood or charcoal.
  • Cooks food quickly – Natural gas and propane burn easily at higher temperatures, giving the griller total control over searing.
  • Gives food an authentic barbecue flavor – As the grill plates and burners become more seasoned, the flavors infuse into grilled food. Additionally, gas grills are awesome for cooking ribs and other sloppy sauce foods.
  • Gives food an authentic barbecue flavor – As the grill plates and burners become more seasoned, the flavors infuse into grilled food. Additionally, gas grills are awesome for cooking ribs and other sloppy sauce foods.

Cons

  • Not portable if attached to a natural gas line – Once these grills are attached to the gas line, they become permanent fixtures in their outdoor space, much like a gas stove.
  • Usually larger than charcoal or electric grills – Because of their additional features, gas grills may be more cumbersome and clunky than their easily moveable counterparts.
  • Require a lot of space and may not be allowed at some housing complexes – Cooking with gas can be dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing and fires can start easily if you’re not careful.
  • Propane tanks can be dangerous – For on-the-go grillers, it’s important to remember to secure your propane tanks while traveling to and from the stadium after a tailgate. Hooking the tank up to your grill must be done correctly so a fire hazard isn’t presented.
  • Hard to achieve a smoky flavor in your meats – Without the benefit of wood or charcoal, that famous smoky flavor is difficult to incorporate without the help of a smoker box.

How To Turn On Your Gas Grill

Grillers and gas grills are like a match made in heaven. In any case, these grills come equipped with high-end features that make them easier to operate, and you can cook delicious meals without having to stock a fire.

However, do not be mistaken. Lighting up a gas grill is not as straightforward as it looks, and it takes more than just turning a knob.

In this post, we discuss how to turn on a gas grill safely and precautions to take when operating your grill.

Can You Add Charcoal in a Gas Grill

If you intend to add charcoal to your gas grill, you have to invest in a dual-fuel grill that comes with a charcoal basket or tray. Such grills are not only expensive to buy but also costly to maintain. With this in mind, it is a good idea to buy a smoker box or tube to obtain the smoky flavor you want instead of adding charcoal to your gas grill.

Learn more about if you can put charcoal in a gas grill.

How Many BTU Does Your Propane Grill Needs

Science and technical terms are often a source of confusion when researching potential purchases. In terms of propane grills, BTUs are widely discussed without discerning what significance they actually have.

Once you’re aware of what BTUs are and their importance to a grill’s performance, you can buy with confidence. While the number of BTUs is important, the grill’s overall quality plays a huge part.

General rule of thumb is looking for 80-100 BTUs per square inch of space, per burner. Any more than that is overkill and risks burning your food, any less and you’ll find yourself cooking longer and often drying out your meal just getting it to the proper temperature.

Here’s more details on what is a good BTU for a gas grill

Using Gas Grill on a Wooden Deck

While cement patios or outdoor kitchens located away from the house are ideal for grilling, wooden decks attached to the house provide unique challenges. Grilling here is convenient but can also lead to fires. Follow safety precautions diligently, and you’ll worry less about a fire breaking out when enjoying that next meal grilled to perfection.

We have here the complete gas grill on wood deck safety tips

Still looking for something? Check out all the latest reviews of the best built-instainless steeltabletop and other type of gas grill appliances from GRILLBABYGRILL.COM