12 Best Tabletop Grills – BBQ-Style Cooking Anywhere

You have always wanted to have an amazing cooking space like one of those gorgeous backyard kitchens you see in commercials, but lack the space indoors and out? Want to grill vegetables, meats, and more but don’t have space on your patio or balcony? Well, getting one of the best tabletop grills might be the perfect solution to your problems!

Tabletop grills are perfect for small cooking spaces or grilling for just one or two people. They’re also fantastic for camping trips and using in or around an RV.

If a tabletop grill sounds like something you could benefit from, then you should read on. We’ve researched a dozen tabletop grills to provide you with in-depth information on the grills. We also answer some common questions other tabletop grill customers have had and give you tips on how to find the best tabletop grill for your needs.

Our Top 12 Best Tabletop Grills 

The following table includes our top picks for the best tabletop grills. If you’re in a hurry and just want to see where each grill ranks, take a look! We’ve ranked these grills based on several features, including cooking space, temperature control, and unique features.

If you’re not in too much of a rush, though, we definitely suggest that you continue on and read our reviews and buying guide. This will help you make sure that you’re getting the best possible portable grill for your cooking and recreational intentions.

 

Editor choice 1 Weber 51060001 Q1200
10
Weber 51060001 Q1200
(Best tabletop gas grill)

This liquid propane grill is designed for efficiency and convenience whether you’re on the go or grilling at home.

10
2 Philips Avance Collection
9.8
Philips Avance Collection
(Best indoor tabletop grill)

If you want to grill in your home without a lot of smoke, this is a great electric grill to suit your needs.

9.8
Best value 3 Country Smokers CSPEL015010497
9.7
Country Smokers CSPEL015010497
(Best tabletop pellet grill)

If you’re looking for a great grill able to enrich your food with a savory, wood-smoked flavor, this is the grill for you.

9.7
4 Weber Jumbo Joe
9.6
Weber Jumbo Joe
(Best tabletop charcoal grill)

If you’re a fan of charcoal grills, want the convenience of a tabletop, and need to cook multiple food items, the Jumbo Joe is for you.

9.6
Best seller 5 Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet
9.5

This tabletop grill is compact enough for even the tiniest of spaces. Plus, it features a carrying handle for transportation.

9.5
6 IWATANI “YAKIMARU” CB-SLG-1n
9.3

When you want to make some fantastic Korean barbecue but don’t have much space, you should consider this tabletop grill first.

9.3
7 NORTHFIRE Inferno
9.3
NORTHFIRE Inferno
(Best outdoor tabletop grill)

This propane and infrared tabletop grill is built to last and will cook all of your grillable food items with steakhouse quality.

9.3
8 Blackstone
9.2
Blackstone
(Best griddle-style tabletop grill)

Easy to store and available in various sizes, the Blackstone tabletop grill is great for breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.

9.2
9 Char-Broil Grill2Go X200
9.0
Char-Broil Grill2Go X200
(Best tabletop gas grill under $100)

For a sturdy, durable tabletop grill on a budget, the Grill2Go will suit all of your grilling needs.

9.0
10 Char-Griller Box
8.7
Char-Griller Box
(Best interchangeable smoker-tabletop grill)

Like smoking meats as well as grilling them? Then this Char-Griller Box may be just what you’re looking for.

8.7
11 Weber 1141001
8.5
Weber 1141001
(Best tabletop grill for camping)

If you’re looking for the most reliable tabletop grill for camping, this Weber grill is a great option.

8.5
Best price 12 Delonghi BG24 Perfecto
8.4
Delonghi BG24 Perfecto
(Best tabletop electric grill)

This electric indoor tabletop grill is ‘Perfecto’ for all of your in-home grilling needs! Small, lightweight and almost smokeless.

8.4

 

1 Editor choice

Weber 51060001 Q1200 – Best tabletop gas grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: 14.1 or 16.4 liquid propane canisters
  • Cast aluminum lid and body with porcelain-enameled cast-iron grates
  • 189 square inches of cooking space
  • Uses electronic ignition
  • Produces 8500 BTU

This liquid propane tabletop grill from Weber is our pick for the best tabletop gas grill around. If you’re looking for a grill to use in a small kitchen space, on a patio, or on a balcony, this is a great option for you to consider. It’s also perfect for camping or road trips, though at first glance it doesn’t look like much. It’s packed with great features and is built to last, though.

It comes in six attractive colors that can match any indoor kitchen space or outdoor balcony or patio decor. Since it’s designed for tabletop use, the bottom doesn’t get hot even when the cooking temperature is up to 500 degrees, so you can set it on any kind of surface without worry that it’ll scorch or melt it.

This grill works great with the Weber folding stand and cover, but it doesn’t come with either. You can usually buy them in a bundle on Amazon, though, and it’s well worth a little bit of extra spending to get the whole package. The cover will help protect your grill and prolong its life while the stand is simply convenient to have and can make any grilling venture a dream.

You might have some difficulties at first removing and replacing the LP canisters of this tabletop grill. This grill also uses AAA batteries or a plug to power the automatic on/off ignition, but if you plan to just use the plug, you should be careful to keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t come loose.

Positives
  • The grill uses an easy-start electronic ignition and control burner valve settings for maximum control and convenience
  • Has a grease management system that helps to minimize mess and clean-up times, as well as reducing the risk of creating a fire hazard
  • Features side-tables providing space for plates and utensils
  • The cast aluminum cook box and shroud are efficient and durable for cooking at any temperature while providing the appropriate circulation for even cooking
  • The porcelain-enameled cast-iron grates are heavy-duty and can be removed for easy cleaning
Negatives
  • Works well with a cart but does not come with one – the cart must be ordered separately.
  • The grill takes a longer time than others to heat up to 500 degrees, it takes about 15 minutes to get to this temperature.
  • The LP canisters can be difficult to screw into this grill
2

Philips Avance Collection – Best indoor tabletop grill

Features

  • Type: Electric, uses 120 V connection and 1600 watts
  • Automatic temperature control set at 446 degrees
  • Die-cast, non-stick aluminum grid grill
  • Uses infrared technology to heat food
  • The unique design prevents smoke while cooking most foods

The Philips Avance Smokeless tabletop grill is a fantastic option if you need a grill for indoor grilling. It boasts a patented, smokeless design and technology and is entirely electric, so you can use it wherever there’s a source of power.

This electric tabletop grill uses infrared heat and light to cook food for you. It doesn’t need to have the temperature adjusted, as it automatically reaches and consistently holds a temperature of 446 degrees. This is the perfect temperature to cook and sear meats including poultry and fish. The drip tray under the grill catches excess fat and other drippings while your food cooks, helping to cut back on a majority of smoke typically produced while grilling.

The grill is non-stick and is theoretically easy to clean up since you can wipe it down easily or put it in the dishwasher. However, any overcooking or especially messy foods may get stuck and require a bit more work to unstick from your grill. Additionally, you should be careful of the plastic components of this grill, as they may break easily if you aren’t.

While advertised as entirely smokeless, that’s not entirely possible when grilling all kinds of food, particularly things like sausages, hamburgers, or chicken that still has the skin on it. These foods and others that are higher in fat content will still smoke even with this grill. Additionally, while cooking, you may have a hard time monitoring the status of your food, as it’s incredibly difficult to look at the infrared light. You may need to use a high-powered white light to try to peek into the grill, and may even need sunglasses if your eyes are sensitive enough.

Positives
  • Safe to use indoor
  • Uses advanced infrared technology and reflectors to heat the cooking grid
  • Comes with an under-grill drip tray that stays cool, preventing unnecessary smoking while you cook
  • This grill can be wiped clean or washed in the dishwasher, making it easy to clean
  • You can buy just the grill itself or buy it with a ceramic scraper
Negatives
  • The power button is plastic and can break easily if you aren’t careful
  • It’s hard to see how done your food is while it’s cooking due to the bright red infrared light
  • It’s not entirely smokeless, especially when cooking foods with a higher fat content
3 Best value

Country Smokers CSPEL015010497 – Best tabletop pellet grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: Wood pellets
  • Has a temperature range from 180 degrees to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Has a cooking surface area of 256
  • Made with acrylic materials
  • Holds up to 3.5 pounds of wood pellets

Country Smokers’ wood pellet tabletop grill is a great choice if you’re looking for that savory, wood-smoke flavor whether you happen to be grilling at home or on the go.

This grill has a cooking surface area of 191.4 square inches with an additional upper rack that has a surface area of 64.6 square inches. Combined, this gives you an impressive 256 square inches of cooking surface area. It has an attractive black sand finish on its acrylic surface and uses a dial-in digital temperature control. This will allow you to control the cooking temperature from a range between 180 degrees and 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

The grill is on the heavier side though, so keep that in mind if you plan to be using it for travel or generally will be moving it around a lot. It weighs over fifty pounds, and that’s not including its 3.5-pound wood pellet capacity. But considering the cooking surface area in this grill, the weight may well be worth it for your needs.

There is a common issue with this grill involving the motherboard that helps to control the temperature. It can go out easily after a few uses and if the grill is handled too roughly or the thermostat is messed with too much. This is obviously a problem, especially if you want to smoke a brisket and then grill some chicken breasts with your next use. Keep an eye on the temperature when using this grill, though, and you should be fine.

 

Positives
  • Comes with a removable upper rack that has a surface area of 64.6 square inches
  • Uses a dial-in digital temperature control for perfect results
  • Can be used for both grilling and smoking food
  • Great for tailgating, camping, RV use, and more
  • Comparatively large pellet container
Negatives
  • The grill is heavy, weighing over fifty pounds
  • The paint on the thermostat is less than perfect, but the temperatures are still readable
  • There’s a commonly-found issue concerning the motherboard of this product and the temperature gauge
4

Weber Jumbo Joe – Best tabletop charcoal grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: Charcoal
  • The lid and bowl are porcelain-enameled
  • Tuck-N-Carry lid lock
  • Temperature-controlling dampers
  • Large 18-inch diameter

Our choice for the best charcoal tabletop grill is the Jumbo Joe by Weber. This has that old school, classic grill looks without much size and weight. It’s compact and lightweight, making it easy to move around your home or outside space as well as taking it on the go.

This Weber arrives in a well-packed box and is easy to assemble by yourself in a very short amount of time. Weber included everything you need to assemble this grill, including a nifty wrench that’s perfectly suited for the nuts. It all comes together to form a very solid, durable little grill that is great for hunting trips, camping, patio barbecues, and more. Additionally, you can use it on wood, metal, or plastic surfaces, as heat doesn’t really escape through the bottom.

We do suggest that you look into getting some Weber charcoal rails, which will help concentrate the coals in your grill for focusing heat or can allow you to cook using indirect heat if you’d prefer. The grill also doesn’t come with a temperature gauge, so you may want to buy and install one of those as well.

One big downside of this grill (which isn’t really all that big, if we’re being honest) is that the vents get particularly hot while the grill is in use. This may be an obvious thing, but it should be noted because it’s very easy to burn yourself while trying to open or close these vents if you aren’t careful.

Positives
  • The Tuck-N-Carry lid doubles as both a lock and a carrying handle for convenience and easy transportation
  • Lightweight and quite compact
  • The grill retains heat well and does not seem to release too much heat below it
  • It is easy to put together and Weber provides all necessary pieces, including a wrench for the nuts
Negatives
  • The vents of this grill do get a little hot, so be aware of that before trying to touch them
  • It does not come with a temperature gauge, but it’s very easy to install one
Features

  • Fuel Type: Propane
  • Uses one 10,000 BTU burner
  • Has 176 square inches of cooking surface area
  • High-quality, stainless steel cooking grate
  • Compact, lightweight design

Cuisinart’s Petit Gourmet is the best compact tabletop grill available on the market and is perfect for small families, a couple of friends, or for personal, on-the-go uses.

While this compact propane tabletop grill is designed and intended for use with a standard one-pound propane canister, is does come with a heavy gauge propane fitting that will allow for the use of a 20-pound tank hookup. It heats up and cools off quickly, and the built-in thermometer gives accurate readings on the temperature in the grill. The bottom is sealed and prevents burning, melting, and other heat-related damage from whatever surface the grill is sitting on.

You should watch out for the burner knobs, though. It may not be clear in the instructions, but you will need to push the knobs in while you’re turning. If you don’t, they can easily strip out or otherwise malfunction. If this happens, you’ll need to contact the Fulham Group, not Cuisinart, for customer support.

One other thing to look out for is that, if you repeatedly use this grill to cook at high temperatures, some of the parts may melt. This includes the carrying handle, lid latches, and other small parts that can turn an inconvenient problem into a devastating one if you aren’t observant.

Positives
  • Has a locking hood with carrying handle
  • The small footprint is great for small balconies, tiny homes, and RVs
  • Comes with a built-in thermometer
  • Easy to start
  • The stainless-steel cooking grate is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning
Negatives
  • The burner knobs may malfunction easily or strip out if you don’t push the knob in while turning it
  • Cuisinart does not provide support for this grill – support is through the Fulham Group
  • Some components of the grill, like the handle and the lid latch, may melt after several uses, especially if high heat is used
Features

  • Fuel Type: Butane, gas canisters
  • Compact size and weight with a small footprint
  • Continuous burning time is approximately 217 minutes
  • Uses a piezoelectric ignition system
  • Made with powder-coated steel, ABS resin, and aluminum die-casting

If you want an authentic, Korean BBQ experience without having to spend all of your money taking your family out to enjoy it, you should consider investing in the Yakimaru tabletop grill by Iwatani.

This grill uses butane gas canisters to cook your meats and vegetables with minimal grease and a smokeless experience. It’s made with a combination of materials including powder-coated steel, aluminum die-casting, and ABS resin. Different parts of the grill use different materials and ensure that they operate as designed for as long as possible. In addition to its durability, the materials make this grill easy to clean.

It does come with instructions, but the instruction manual for this grill is in Japanese. As a result, it may be difficult for some people to operate unless they can read Japanese or have previous experience cooking on these types of grills. Luckily, there are videos online that can walk you through proper use and maintenance.

If you order this grill, you may not be able to order the butane needed to use it, depending on where you live. It’s a good idea to look into your shipping and receiving laws for your state and, if you cannot order the canisters online, you should be able to find them in a store nearby. Try a hardware store or home improvement store, as they usually will supply them.

Positives
  • Features a pressure-sensitive safety element
  • Comes with the instruction manual and a convenient handle for portability
  • Made with high-quality materials for guaranteed durability and longevity
  • It is designed to smokelessly barbecue your meats and vegetables
  • This grill is easy to clean
Negatives
  • The included instruction manual is in Japanese, so you may have to look up videos of this grill to use it properly
  • The butane may not be legally shipped to all places, so you may have to find a brick-and-mortar store to purchase canisters from
7

NORTHFIRE Inferno – Best outdoor tabletop grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: Propane
  • Uses infrared heat
  • Made of stainless steel
  • Uses 8,500 BTU
  • Cooks food quickly and evenly

The Northfire Inferno is a fantastic tabletop grill perfect for searing steaks. It’s an outdoor grill, though, so keep that in mind.

This grill uses a combination of infrared heat and propane to perfectly cook meats, toast sandwiches, and more. It operates at an intense 1500 degrees, so be careful during operation. It arrives in a well-packed box that adequately protects it during shipping. It heats up quickly and will give you a perfectly-cooked ribeye steak in as little as two minutes.

Pay attention to where you place your food in this unit, however. Putting it too close or too far from the flame may result in under- or overcooked foods. Also, make sure that you adjust your regular preparation techniques for this grill – rubs and sauces may cook off under this intense heat, so you should brine or marinate your food for a bit longer than usual if you want to properly flavor it.

It may be difficult to ignite this grill if you aren’t properly prepared to do so. You will need to make sure that the AA batteries in the push ignition are charged or otherwise not empty. Additionally, when you’ll turn the knob, you’ll need to make sure to push them in while turning it. If you do not remain conscious of these things, when the grill does eventually light, you may experience some blowback. That’s why we recommend this grill for more experienced people.

 

Positives
  • Reaches an intense 1500 degrees Fahrenheit fast
  • Cooks evenly
  • The grill rack and other components are easy to remove and clean, they are also dishwasher safe
  • Features a push-button start ignitor
  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver around your outdoor space
Negatives
  • This grill is designed for outdoor use only, so keep that in mind and use it appropriately
  • It may sometimes be difficult to get the igniter to light
  • Placement of your food items is key when cooking with this grill
8

Blackstone – Best griddle-style tabletop grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: Propane
  • The 17-inch model
  • 260 square inches of cooking space
  • 12,000 BTU output
  • Made of powder-coated stainless steel and cold-rolled steel
  • Features a built-in grease catcher

If you like cooking breakfast on a grill while camping, this griddle-style tabletop grill from Blackstone is an option you should consider before taking your next trip.

This tabletop grill uses propane as its fuel source. It works along with an electric ignition that’s incredibly easy to operate and will trigger a stainless-steel H-shaped burner under the surface. The unique shape allows the entire surface to heat completely and evenly for the best cooking results. Not only is this grill easy to use, but it’s also simple to clean once you’re finished and is just as easy to store. It’s got a built-in grease catcher and a portable design.

One thing you should know is that you will have to properly season this grill before using it. To do that, apply cooking oil (we suggest flaxseed oil) evenly across the surface. Then heat the grill as high as possible to let it burn-in. Remove the excess and repeat the process until the surface darkens.

While it seems to be an issue some have experienced where the propane will stop getting through the regulator, keeping the grill from heating properly. This doesn’t seem to be a common issue, but it is one nonetheless, and you should keep an eye out for it. Customer service from Blackstone is a little hit-or-miss, so keep that in mind as well.

Positives
  • Properly seasoned griddles will act similarly to stick-resistant Teflon
  • It has plenty of space for a variety of food items including burgers, eggs, french toast, bacon, steaks, and more
  • Heats evenly
  • Space-saving design, easy to store
  • Uses a stainless-steel single H-shaped burner to quickly and evenly distribute heat across the cooking surface
Negatives
  • The sides of this grill will get hot to the touch even though the bottom will stay cool, so be sure to keep it away from other surfaces or objects
  • Blackstone appears to have poor customer service for this product when necessary
  • There appears to be an issue involving propane not getting through the regulator
9

Char-Broil Grill2Go X200 – Best tabletop gas grill under $100

Features

  • Fuel Type: Propane
  • Has a 200 square inch cooking surface area
  • Made with cast aluminum and stainless steel
  • Uses a no flare-up TRU-infrared cooking system
  • Uses 65% infrared heat
  • Hood-mounted temperature gauge

If you happen to be on a budget but really want to grill some great food, this is a great grill that should be able to meet your needs and expectations.

This grill uses a TRU-infrared heating system for safety. While using 65% infrared heat, it evenly cooks your food anywhere on its surface without the threat of drying it out due to an overabundance of hot air. The heat settings range from simmering to searing, and it’s easy to tell what the internal temperature is with the hood-mounted temperature gauge.

Be mindful that this is another grill that you’ll have to properly season before using. Additionally, you should take extra care to be sure it is clean before and after each use, as the stainless-steel grate doesn’t seem to completely resist rust. Also, be sure to check the grease holes in the grate to be sure that they aren’t clogged before and after every use, as this is a common problem.

Also, you should know that while cooking and for some time after operating this grill, you need to be cautious not to touch it too much. It gets extremely hot to the touch and you can easily burn yourself on it!

 

Positives
  • You can buy this grill either by itself or with an attractive, protective carrying case
  • Even without the case, it comes with a high-impact frame with legs and a carrying handle
  • Lid-mounted gauge helps to monitor temperatures
  • Can be easily converted for use with a 20-pound tank
  • It’s lightweight compared to some other tabletop grills
Negatives
  • There are some worries that this grill gets too hot to handle
  • The stainless-steel grate doesn’t seem to be rust-proof
  • The grease holes in the grate can clog up easily so you have to pay extra attention to them
10

Char-Griller Box – Best interchangeable smoker-tabletop grill

Features

  • Fuel Type: Charcoal
  • Features heavy steel construction with cast-iron cooking grates
  • Has 250 square inches of primary cooking space
  • Can be used as a tabletop grill of as a horizontal smoker
  • Weighs a moderate 40 pounds

Do you want to be able to smoke your food as much as you want to grill it? If so, this interchangeable tabletop grill might be perfect for you.

This griller box uses charcoal to smoke and cook your food with that familiar, smoky flavor that many people love. It’s able to be used as both a typical tabletop grill as well as a horizontal, Texas-style smoker. The grill comes ready to make cleaning up a breeze with a slide-out, easy-dump ash pan when you’re done cooking. With 250 square inches of space, you have plenty of room to cook a wide variety of food items for your friends and family!

If you want this grill to be level, however, you may need to contact the customer support team. Sometimes this item ships with spacers that are not the correct length for the grill. But, as long as you have the serial number and model number of your grill, the support team will send you the right spacers free of charge.

You’ll also need to contact customer support if you plan to mount this grill to another barrel charcoal grill, as it does not come with any of the parts you’ll need to do so. There have been some complaints about some of the customer service replies, but they do tend to help you as long as you explain what’s going on.

Positives
  • Can be used as a side firebox on barrel charcoal grills
  • Features adjustable dampers for additional heat control
  • Comes equipped with an easy-dump ash pan for simple, fast clean-up
  • Multipurpose for a variety of cooking styles and preferences
Negatives
  • The spacers are too short for proper mounting, you may need to contact customer service for spacers that are the appropriate length
  • Mounting or attaching this grill to other barrel charcoal grills may require additional parts that are not provided
11

Weber 1141001 – Best tabletop grill for camping

Features

  • Fuel Type: Propane Gas
  • 160 square inches of cooking surface
  • Stainless-steel burner at 6,500 BTU
  • The lid, base, and cooking grate are porcelain-enameled
  • Features a push-button ignition

If you camp a lot and need a convenient, easy-to-transport tabletop grill, then this Weber Go-Anywhere grill should be of great use to you.

It uses propane gas to cook your food, and the tanks are small enough to easily pack away. The burner heats the grill with 6,500 BTUs-per-hour and can get hot, so be careful when you’re using it. The base, lid, and grate are all porcelain-enameled and are guaranteed to last you a long time without suffering damages. It also has glass-reinforced handles, and carrying this unit is a breeze. In addition to the handles being durable, the plated steel legs also act as a lid-locking mechanism.

Even though it’s the best camping tabletop grill, it does seem to have trouble staying lit when it’s windy out. Keep this in mind and try to use it in a space that has low wind flow for the best results.

The temperature can be difficult to control, so you may want to play around with it before you actually take it out on your next camping trip. This way you won’t waste a lot of time trying to figure it out when you need to cook with it or when you’re already hungry.

 

Positives
  • Has pivoting, plated steel legs that also lock the lid into place while carrying
  • The handles are glass-reinforced nylon
  • Porcelain-enameled for durability
  • It’s small and lightweight enough to carry around like a large lunchbox
Negatives
  • People that owned previous models of this grill don’t seem to like the new grates
  • Has trouble staying lit in windy conditions outside
  • The temperature control is a little finicky and can be difficult to get used to controlling
12 Best price

Delonghi BG24 Perfecto – Best tabletop electric grill

Features

  • Uses an input power of 1500 watts, 120 volts, and a 60 Hz frequency
  • Features a detachable, adjustable thermostat
  • The grill plate is non-stick
  • Lightweight
  • Has a tempered glass lid

If you want to grill in the comfort of your home, then this Delonghi electric tabletop grill is going to be a great fit for your needs.

This electric grill is great for cooking a variety of foods including meats and vegetables. The tempered glass lid helps to keep heat trapped without drying out your food. This also makes it ideal for keeping food warm after it’s been cooked.

The grill plate and drip pan are non-stick. But, you need to be careful and properly season the grill and not to let heavy sauces burn into the drip pan, or they may lose their non-stick coating.

Additionally, this grill may not be suitable if you’re wanting to grill cheeseburgers or other thick, soft-topped items, as the tempered glass lid of this grill sits very close to the grilling surface. This means that any cheese or other items may end up stuck to the lid.

Positives
  • Evenly distributes heat with a fully-embedded grill plate heating element
  • Cooks and keeps food juicy with the tempered glass lid
  • Can be used to cook food as well as keep it warm following cooking
  • Has a removable non-stick drip tray that is easy to clean
Negatives
  • The drip tray is aluminum, and thick sauces may burn to it and negate the non-stick nature of it
  • The non-stick coating on the grill surface may begin to wear off if the grill is not kept properly seasoned
  • The lid rests close to the cooking surface, which may make cooking some items like cheeseburgers more difficult

Buyer’s Guide

When you decide to start shopping for the perfect tabletop grill for your home or activities, there are many factors that you need to take into consideration before committing to a choice.

12 Best Tabletop Grills -1

Fuel Type

This is one of the most common things that people look at when shopping for a grill, tabletop or otherwise. There are many different options available for grills as far as fuel or power go – some are electric and some use propane, while others use charcoal or even wood. What grill you choose may depend primarily on the fuel type, as every grill master tends to have a preference.

Electric grills, like the Philips Avance Collection, tend to be the fastest for heating up but they may not always heat up as well as propane grills, which are the next fastest option. Charcoal and wood take a lot more time to heat up but offer a difference in flavoring to whatever you happen to be cooking. Some people even use specific wood chips to get certain flavors of smoke into their meat as it’s cooking.

Regardless of how you choose to grill, there’s no wrong way to go here. If you don’t have a preference, your options are essentially limitless and entirely open.

Cooking Space and Surface Area

You need to consider the cooking space you have, that is, the area where you will be using this grill most often. It needs to be large enough to comfortably accommodate the size of your tabletop grill, without there being too much snugness around it that could cause any risk of danger for fire or smoke build-up. Make sure you measure the space and compare it to the grill you’re thinking of getting before you commit to a purchase.

Additionally, the surface area of the grill should be considered when making your selection. Understand, first and foremost, that you’re not going to be hosting a full cookout for twenty people on a tabletop grill alone. It’s not feasible. Tabletop grills are best for small groups of people, like one to four people under most circumstances, so you will be able to comfortably feed your family without overworking the grill.

The cooking surface area of your tabletop grill is usually measured in terms of square inches. This may be a little abstract for some people to figure out just by reading that their grill has a certain surface area, but for reference, a grill with a surface area of 150 square-inches of cooking space is usually enough for about eight burgers or up to ten chicken breasts, depending of course on the size of the items.

Additionally, if your grill comes with warming racks, you can cook more food or multitask your cooking easily. It can also help to prevent your food from drying out while you finish cooking, especially things like chicken.

12 Best Tabletop Grills -4

Size and Weight

One of the main reasons that people get a tabletop grill in the first place is due to space restrictions at home or on the road, so checking the size of your grill before buying it is an absolute necessity.

The size is just as important as the weight though, particularly if you plan on traveling with the grill or moving it around frequently. There’s no sense in buying a tabletop grill, something intended for portability and functionality in small spaces when you can’t easily move or maneuver it to a new location as needed.

Make sure that the grill won’t feel awkward for you to carry and will fit into whatever spaces you plan to use it regularly, or wherever you intend to store it when it isn’t in use. Also, make sure that you can comfortably handle the weight of the grill – some smaller grills might also be made of heavier materials, so keep that in mind.

Convenience

The key takeaway here is that tabletop grills are meant to be portable and easy to use. If you’re only using the grill at home and not intending to travel with it, portability and convenience may not be the biggest factor for you, but it should still be a consideration.

The grill should be easy to move, use, and clean. The Weber 1141001 is a great example of portability and convenience in a tabletop grill.

How Easy it is to Clean

Nobody wants to dedicate an entire day scrubbing the components of a tabletop grill, so the easier your grill is to clean, the more time you’ll get to spend actually cooking on it. Many tabletop grills have components that are completely dishwasher safe, while others merely need to be wiped down with a wet cloth or sponge.

Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet -7

Design and Materials

The materials used to construct your tabletop grill vary widely, from aluminum to steel. The materials for the cook box and shroud may differ from those used for the grill, heating elements, handles, and other parts of the grill. But primarily, your concerns should be with the cook box and shroud or lid anyway as these are what will hold heat and smoke in and can become easily damaged if not properly cared for or maintained.

The most commonly used materials for your grill are either steel or cast-iron. Steel might be stainless steel or cold-rolled steel, but in either case, you can be certain that your grill is going to be resistant to damages and will be sturdy through a variety of uses. A great option to consider would be the Blackstone, which uses both stainless and cold-rolled steel.

Cast iron is typically the choice most people flock to between the two because a well-seasoned cast-iron grill has a tendency to make food taste better. However, it’s usually also more expensive and requires special maintenance and treatment before and after each use.

Handles and Legs

Having handles or legs on your tabletop grill is not a necessity, but they are extremely convenient for when you need to take your grill elsewhere to cook. Even though most tabletop grills are small and easily portable already, it doesn’t hurt to make the process as painless and convenient as possible.

Handles and folding legs are especially useful when you take your grill camping, picnicking, or tailgating. The legs, especially folding legs, are also great to use on patios and balconies so you don’t have to worry about taking up table space in an already limited area.

But, even if the legs don’t fold, as long as they give the grill enough clearance from any nearby surfaces, they’re still great to have. Additionally, handles on these grills end to be heat-resistant and won’t burn you when you go to move your grill after using it if necessary. Just make sure that they are securely attached to your grill!

Warranty

Since tabletop grills can be expensive depending on the brand name, size, materials, and more, you want to make sure that yours comes with a warranty through either the seller or the manufacturer. Look for a decent warranty that covers everything from the time you place your order to well after you plan to begin using your grill. This will give you time to properly test it and observe any potential issues.

FAQs

12 Best Tabletop Grills

The 16.4-ounce canisters usually last for about five hours of use each, so if you grill using this size canister for an hour per grilling session, you will be able to grill a total of five times per canister.

Not all grills need to be seasoned, but for the ones that do (to find this out check out your grill’s manual), you want to make sure that you do so properly.

Before you turn on your grill, coat the surface of the grate or griddle with high-heat cooking oil. This can be flaxseed oil, canola oil, or peanut oil if you won’t be serving anyone who has a sensitivity or allergy. Wipe any excess off with a paper towel and then set your grill to its highest setting for anywhere from 15 to 20 minutes, or whenever the oil begins to smoke.

Do this until the surface of your grill darkens in color. This will mean that your grill is properly seasoned. You will need to make sure to maintain your grill afterward. After you finish cooking, allow your grill to cool, and remove any debris from the griddle or grates. Then lightly apply a coat of oil, preferably the same oil you initially seasoned the grill with.

As previously mentioned, neither fuel type is really better than the other unless you have specific preferences regarding speed, taste, and things like the level of charring you’re looking for on your foods.

However, as a general rule, any red meats that are being cooked and any smoking you need to do should be done with charcoal. Poultry, fish, and vegetables can be cooked with propane.

Conclusion

When you want to grill but don’t really have the space to do so, you look for alternative options, and a good option for most people is to invest in the best tabletop grill. Whether you prefer propane grills like our top pick, the Weber 51060001 Q1200, or prefer a smokier taste that can be achieved with charcoal or wood, there’s a tabletop grill somewhere on this list that’ll suit your needs perfectly. It’s definitely well worth looking into, especially if you’re a big fan of barbecue-style foods!

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