Best Portable Grill Reviews

by The Smoke Expert on August 23, 2014

I’ve become really fond of portable grills these days as they afford a lot of freedom and flexibility when it comes to grilling awesome food for your family and friends. However, it’s a pain when somebody asks you to name the best portable grill for the money because of the numerous choices out there.

Thankfully, I’ve had experience with a lot of brands and being a part of the grilling enthusiast community in my state, I’ve tested and used most of the major portable grill brands that are available in the market. So in order to help out my readers, I’ve written a detailed review of the top 3 portable grills that are not only of the highest quality but are also great value for money.

Without further ado, let’s move onto a detailed review of the 3 best portable grills in the market.

1. Coleman’s Roadtrip LXX Grill

#1 on my list of the best portable grill is the Roadtrip LXX. Coleman is known for manufacturing some of the most versatile and reliable road-trip grills. Two of the most notable of those are the Coleman Roadtrip LX and the Roadtrip LXX. While the former model certainly has a great range of features and an Amazon score of good 4.5 stars out of 5.0 stars to boast of, yet the latter model is what we are going to focus on today. That is because the Coleman Roadtrip LXX is the newer model, and has certain advantages compared to the LX.

Best Portable Grill

The LXX features a body which has a weight of 50 pounds and dimensions nearing 47 by 19 by 34 inches. The grill features two burners, which are independently controlled, each having the capacity to deal with 11,000 BTUs. Therefore, the total BTU output of the grill is about 22,000; hence, more than sufficient for searing amazing steaks. Even though this grill is quite portable in nature, it has a cooking area of an adequate 285 square inches. So, compared to many other portable grills priced similarly, the cooking surface of this grill can be regarded as extensive. On the other hand, in order to make transportation easier, the grill features wheels, as well as a large handle.

One thing many people find really considerate of this grill is its ability to work with different cooking griddle, grill, as well as stove grates. Due to the interchangeable grill feature, by mixing matching various surfaces, a truly customizable variety of grilling experience can be attained. The surface of the grill has superior porcelain coating, and is made of cast iron. Moreover, table inserts have brushed stainless finish. As far as cleaning is concerned, the grill makes it easy due to the presence of removable type grease tray. A user does not need to deal with any hassles while starting the grill, because it boasts of InstaStart technology. Interestingly enough, the top part of the grill is quite convenient, especially because there are sliding tables, thermometer, as well as built-in tool holders. While the market cost of this grill is usually around $299, you can save a lot by getting it from Amazon for just $149!

The best part is, its assembly process is not too time consuming or difficult. Most users of the Coleman LXX report that the assembly instructions are quite straightforward. In addition to that, there are many accessories compatible with this model which you can buy in order to enhance your overall cooking experience. Further, replacement parts for the LXX are readily available too on the official website. If you are someone who does not even give a second look at products that have no warranty, you will be glad to know that it comes with a 3 year warranty period.

Other than the LXX, there are two more series available from Coleman which are worth taking note of – Coleman Roadtrip NXT and Coleman Roadtrip LXE. The latter series uses propane gas, and features a cooking area of nearly 285 square inches. The BTU output offered is 20,000. On the other hand, the NXT series has quite an unconventional look, along with a cooking surface of about 321 sq. inches. The combined BTU produced by older NXT models is 15,000, while newer versions like NXT 300 and 200 are capable of producing up to 20,000 BTUs.

If you are interested in purchasing any model from the NXT series, you will have to spend something between $169 and $249. These models lack certain bells and whistles found in the Roadtrip LXX, but if you want excellent cooking ability for a cheap price, then the NXT series deserves your attention.

2. Solaire Propane Anywhere Infrared Grill

If you’re looking for the best portable grill under $400 or the best tailgate grill, then this one is perfect for your needs. The Anywhere Portable Grill from Solaire is not only sturdy, but also highly compact with a weight of just 27 pounds and measurement of 21 by 13 by 12. Its sturdiness mainly comes from the fact that it is constructed using 304 grade heavy-duty stainless steel. When the need to secure it arises while traveling, the spring-loaded latches come handy.

Solaire Propane Anywhere Infrared Grill

Fast and easy start is assured by its push-button advanced ignition system, and the grill has a reasonable cooking area of 155 square inches. As far as its BTU output goes, it produces nearly 14,000, which is sufficient for searing great steaks. The V-shaped grate made of stainless steel does a good job when it comes to catching drippings, in order to enhance overall flavor and decrease flare-ups from happening.

The great thing about this grill is that even though it cooks food evenly and quickly, the amount of propane it uses is very low. The manufacturer has put special emphasis on safety, which is why the handles of the grill remain totally cool even when it is cooking food using very high temperature. It features a carrying bag made of vinyl as well, which has 3 pockets outside in order to store propane tank.

Except the fact that it sometimes ends up burning delicate foods like fish even when the temperature is kept at medium, this model does not have any other known issues. You will have to spend anywhere between $389 and $400 to make it yours. The grill comes with a 1 year limited warranty.

3. Magma Chefsmate Connoisseur Series Gas Grill

Another worthy contender for the best portable grill is the Magma Chefs Mate Connoisseur Series Gas Grill that has fold away legs and a full length handle which allows for easier mounting for either side. I also liked the fact that it came with a lockable lid that secures all inner components and found it to be extremely useful while transporting the grill to my neighbors place.

Magma Chefsmate Connoisseur Series Gas Grill

It weighs in just less than 18 pounds so it’s not really that heavy and the overall dimensions are 22 x 14 x 13 inches. Like I said, it’s fairly easy to transport this portable grill no matter the location – whether you’ll holding a grilling party on the beach or a popular picnic spot, the Magma Chefs Mate Connoisseur Series Gas Grill won’t leave you hanging.

I also like the sturdy construction of the grill and found it better as compared to similar priced portable grills –  for example, the other do not have a mirror-polished stainless steel body. When it comes to the heating part, I found it to be adequate in terms of speed of heating although the Coleman or Solaire models were much faster. With 162 square-inches of cooking surface and 13,000 BTU’s, it does fit under the golden average BTU per square inch area rule so that’s definitely a good sign.

If you’re looking for an outdoor grill that has some great features, then the Magma doesn’t disappoint. With an inner safety shell, it ensures that all the grease is sent to a front access tray and this allows for easy clean up afterwards which can really be a headache otherwise. There’s also a snap out radiant plate for even heat distribution.

I know a lot of people have concerns when it comes to safe gas bottle exchanging but this is taken care of in this grill thanks to a swiveling regulator valve. What’s even more impressive is the fact that you can use both propane as well as natural gas to fuel this grill and that offers a lot of flexibility.

I’m a person who loves an appliance that comes with some warranty so the Magma was a good choice with a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty for this model. I’ve never had to replace any parts but even after you warranty expires, you can easily replace them for cheap.

All in all, one of the best portable grills for the money and highly recommended from my side!

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