The Best Charcoal BBQ Grills

You may need a new charcoal grill that will let you cook tasty food easily, fast and conveniently? This guide was made just for you!

There are a lot of different kinds of charcoal grills that offer many different features. I’ve picked some of the best charcoal grills from the simple kettle grill to large full functional charcoal grills that can cost a lot. Pick the grill that is right for you and right for your pocketbook. These grills represent the diversity of charcoal grills on the market whether you are looking for one that can smoke, one that can grill like no one’s business or just let you cook up a simple meal.

Pros and Cons!?

There are a few reasons to opt for a charcoal grill, not least of which is cost. You can get a charcoal grill for less than $100 (and in some cases a lot less, although you can also pay well over $100). A charcoal grill also offers that true, cooked-over-a-fire feeling. It might be flavor, but it might also be the thrill of cooking over a charcoal grill! It’s more primal, but also less convenient and not as easy to control as a gas grill.

It’s affordable and portable.

If you like to grill while you’re camping or while tailgating for the big game, there are affordable, small charcoal options that are perfect for just grilling up a couple of burgers. Even a slightly pricier model is more cost-effective and mobile than most gas grill options.

It can get really, really hot.

With practice and patience, you can stoke those coals until they are a solid 700°F. This is generally hotter than most gas grills get and ideal if you want the perfect sear on your steak.

It’s the king of that true grilled flavor.

Often imitated, never quite duplicated, if you really want to have that char-grilled taste, this is the best way to do it — although be warned that if you use lighter fluid, you might end up with a flavor that’s more like, well, lighter fluid.

You probably need a charcoal chimney.

A charcoal chimney is a hollow metal cylinder with a grate inside and handles. You fill it with charcoal, place it on top of your grill, and use newspaper or lighter cubes to get your charcoal hot. When you’re ready, you just transfer the hot coals to your grill and get cooking. It’s not all that complicated and it’s also not expensive (a charcoal chimney will probably cost around $10 to $15), but it’s an extra step and an extra piece of equipment.

It’s more annoying to clean.

Part of the benefit of grilling in the summer is that the whole process is breezier than cooking in your oven or on a stove — there are no pots and pans to deal with or clean up! But charcoal grills can get messy. Chances are, you’ll have to clean up ash and grease after every use, and with a gust of wind you’ll also have to contend with ash all over your deck or patio.

It might be illegal.

Some apartment complexes ban charcoal grills. It usually has to do with the high heat, the fact that you can’t turn them on and off, and the reality of ash and cinder blowing around in the wind (and potentially igniting any wood nearby). Definitely check on any restrictions before you buy one.

 

1, Char-Griller Akorn Jr. Kamado

Everything about this grill exceeds it’s price tag. Is it perfect? For the price I might have to say it is perfect. I don’t expect it to last as long as the competing brands at 2 to 3 times the cost, but I cannot find any faults with it. As long as it’s taken care of I could see it lasting far longer than my precious grills.

Just to continue my lines above, I cannot say enough good things about this grill/smoker. It works amazingly well. Holds temp easily. Uses a minimum of charcoal. Has more room than you might think. I was able to smoke two full racks of ribs by cutting them in half and using a rib rack. I was also able to smoke a 6 pound pork shoulder and a small brisket flat at the same time. Easily enough food for around 6-8 people.

Another great way to utilize this smoker is to take your long smoke items like shoulder, butts, and brisket and smoke them for 3-4 hours and then transfer them to the oven and finish them at 225-250 for the remainder of the cook. After 3-4 hours you’ll have plenty of smoke on the meat to get that authentic flavor finishing it in the oven. Then that frees up the Akorn Jr to do ribs or chicken which takes much less time. Doing this allows you to easily smoke enough meat for 15-20 people.

 

If you want an inexpensive, entry level option to more pricy kamado cookers, you are new to smoking/grilling, or you need to augment your grill arsenal with a smaller more agile cooker this is a great option.  You will not regret buying this grill.

Char-Griller Akorn Jr. Kamado

Grilling surface: 154 sq. in.
Cast iron cooking grates
Double-walled steel; insulation

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Price: £127.08

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2, Charcoal Grill 17in with Steel Cooking Grate for Home Garden BBQ

It seemed like a nice little grill to take on camping trips. The size, convenience, and ease of use of this product is mind-blowing. This conveniently sized BBQ grill is to be used for personal use or a gathering with a small amount of friends.  This grill is easy to transport and is solid.

 

 

In reality, this product is a bit over rated. Reality is you can go to your local dollar store and buy a similar product for less. You could also get one from any local store for the same amount that is taller and bigger. The size of the grilling surface is only slightly larger than a frying pan. It can handle a dinner for two or three people. But if you’re cooking for a larger party, get another grill.

Charcoal Grill 17in with Steel Cooking Grate for Home Garden Barbecue Tool Sets Outdoor Smokers BBQ grilling charcoal Round Portable Charcoal Kettle Grills for Backyard Tailgate Party Camping

MEDIUM SIZE FOR SMALL FAMILY USE: Dimensions 17-inch by 17-inch by 23-inch, 18.5 inch diameter of BBQ grill plated steel cooking replaced grate. It is suitable for small family use, about 3-4 persons. Charcoal home grill doesn't take too much charcoal and takes very little time to get ready to use. please note that the screws and washes are in the bottom of the legs.
THERMOMETER CONTROL & EASY CLEAN: Adjustable air vent with rust-resistant aluminum of garden charcoal grill offers thermometer control and keep the dirt drained well. Removable ash pan of the BBQ Barbecue tool to simplify cleaning. Foldable legs of charcoal kettle gill with wheels for easy transport and a bottom rack for extra storage.
HIGH QUALITY CONSTRUCTION & SMOKY FLAVOR: Steel construction of partable charcoal camping grills with a durable porcelain coating on the round lid and body for strength. This traditional charcoal grilling gives food a superior smoky flavor versus any gas grill. It is suitable for grilling steaks, halved summer squash, Vadelia onion, mushrooms, shrimp, chicken breasts, burgers, hot dogs and asparagus.

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Price: £119.79 £47.99

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3, Weber Original Kettle 18-Inch Charcoal Grill

Remember the first time you cooked on a gas grill? How it was easier and faster – but it didnt quite taste the same as you remembered?

Yeah, in the end – the old school way was /is best. A well made American grill from Weber, good quality hot coals, some applewood for good measure.

The Weber grill has always been the Cadilac of BBQ grilling. The quality good – it won’t rust and will last a decade even when left outdoors. Its other claim to fame is the ability it offers to “shut off the charcoal” as it is air tight. The “one touch” system just makes it even easier. Instead of having to close three bottom vents seperately (and fumbling with hot surfaces that cannot be easily seen), you just flip one lever. You make up your mind yourself about the silver vs. gold models as both are good.

What size do you need? What do you want to cook? A turkey? – better get the 22 1/2 inch size. If you have a chicken or a roast in mind, the 18 1/2 inch will do and it will save you some fuel to boot.

 

I have owned many grills over the decades, some will have a sort of pamphlet with recipes and that’s it. Weber’s booklet tell you how many briquettes to put in depending if you are doing direct or indirect cooking, how many more to add for longer cooking times. Plus it list types of food, and how long to cook them for, very handy.

Weber 441001 Original Kettle 18-Inch Charcoal Grill

Kettle grill with 240 square inches of total cooking space
18-1/2-inch-diameter plated-steel cooking grate; rust-resistant vents
Porcelain-enameled bowl and lid with glass-reinforced nylon handles

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Price: £79.70

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4, Royal Gourmet 24 inch Charcoal Grill

 

One of the best charcoal grill to buy for the price. Its easy to assemble – nothing hard about it. Great size and not too heavy, so you can move it around really easy with the two wheels on it. The black with chrome color on this grill is actually really nice. Just grilled on it a few days ago and everything came out delicious and with nice char marks. I would recommend this grill to those, who wish to have a relatively cheap and reliable charcoal grill for small gatherings.

 

Royal Gourmet Charcoal Grill BBQ Patio Backyard Cooking

Easy to assemble. 380 square inches for cooking grates, porcelain enamel steel wiring, 210 square inches for warming rack, chrome steel wiring
Heavy duty Lid-Mounted Temperature Gauge design, with stainless steel handle, two fixed side shelves offer extra season area
Easy-lift charcoal pan adjustment system for heat control and cooking flexibility, pull-out drawer catches ashes for easy post-cookout clean-up

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Price: £129.99 £119.99

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5, Char-Griller Patio Pro Charcoal Grill

 

A love piece of BBQ grill – sturdy, small enough to easily clean and move it but large enough for a family of 3.
If I would really want to look for something to complain it would be the assembly process – the instructions are not crystal clear so I had to guess a few times. Also, one of holes in the legs wasn’t completely cut so I had to use a hammer to punch through. Nothing too bad though, in less than 2 hours I had it completely set up and ready to fire.

The cast iron grates are a lot better than the usual wire that you get for a small grill. The lid sits well and you can actually control the air flow that goes in and out. I love the wheels and the side handle because when I’m done I can just roll it in my garage. I was a little skeptical because the wheels are plastic and look kind of flimsy compared with the rest, but they held well so far. The whole grill feels strong and well made.

 

Overall I could not be happier with this. Its the perfect size and so easy to empty out that my $600 gas grill won’t be used after buying this one. On the other hand, I would recommend getting a charcoal chimney. You open the drawer 3/4 of the way and set it right on the grate. In ten minutes your ready to cook and no lighter fluid needed ever again.

Char-Griller 1515 Patio Pro Charcoal Grill

250 square inches of cooking space, cast iron cooking grates, side drawer
Ideal for small decks or patios
Features Stay Cool wood handle, side shelf, double steel bottom and side air vent

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Price: £80.11 £70.13

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