Best Flat Top Grill Reviews 2019
Grilling is a huge part of cooking, and for the most part, that may mean having guests over to your home for some kind of gathering. However, for some, it may mean going camping, to the beach, or a tailgate party with friends or family. Many occasions will lead people outdoors to cook on a flat top grill, and the mouth-watering taste of grilled food is one of the best-tasting ways to cook food. Not to mention, the social aspect of getting together with friends and family around a good meal; whether it is breakfast or dinner, it is sure to be great.
In this review, there are five of the best top grills on the market for your viewing. We described in great detail the many outstanding features each one offers and what to consider when purchasing a flat top grill. Some of the grills mentioned are more portable than others, so no matter if you’re looking for a backyard flat top grill or one that you can take camping or to a tailgate party, we got you covered. Let’s take a look!
Blackstone 28-Inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle Station – Best Seller
The Blackstone outdoor gas grill is designed with heat zones that range from 15,000 BTUs to 30,000 BTUs. This 28-inch griddle station has a stainless steel double “H” burner design that offers even heat distribution across the cooking surface. The four adjustable heat zones are able to be adjusted at different heat levels to accurately grill chicken, vegetables, and burgers at the same time without compromising the texture of the food.
The 470-square-inch cooking surface is large enough for a big family gathering or can be reduced for one person by only using one or two heat zones. The unit provides an easy start, battery-powered push-button ignition for quick griddle cooking in no time.
The 28-inch outdoor grill comes with two side shelves that can be used for food prep or utensils; the side shelves can fold out of the way when not being used. This stainless steel frame comes with four-industrial strength, caster wheels for a secure footing, and easy movement. After you have the gas grill griddle station placed where you want, lock the wheels to keep it from moving.
It can also be packed up quickly to transport from place-to-place with its quick removable griddle and folded legs design. The Blackstone grill is designed to last with strong durability construction, a longevity powder-coated black steel frame, and thick cold rolled steel cooking top. The flat top gas grill has a rating as the best seller in the gas grill market due to the excellent features it has to offer.
- It offers two independent heat zones 15,000 and 30,000 BTUs
- You can make restaurant-style cooking for friends and family
- Can easily be transported from your deck to a campsite
- Offers two side shelves for food and utensils
- The location of the drip tray makes it harder to manage grease
- Packaging doesn’t include a grill cover
Camp Chef Flat Top Grill – Top Pick
The Camp Chef Flat Top Grill is designed with four 12,000 BTUs stainless steel burners for customizing restaurant-style cooking. To get the grill ready, you will need to install the propane tank on the holder; then, to light the burners, use the matchless ignition system. The burner makes it possible to cook eggs, bacon, sausage, and hash browns all at the same time while customizing the heat of each burner to cook everything evenly.
The griddle can cook up to 40 strips of bacon all at once on the 604-square-inch surface. Take the griddle off, and you’ll have access to the 501- square-inch grilling surface where you can grill 36 jumbo burgers, how convenient. It provides two large side shelves for food preparation or a serving plate full of mouth-watering food ready to eat.
These shelves also can be folded down when not in use for additional space. Most grills have a tendency to be a pain when it comes to keeping them clean. To make life easier, the Camp Chef Flat Top grill comes with a stainless steel hood design over the burners, sending the hard-to-reach grease into the management system.
The unit comes with four legs that come with conveniently adjustable leg levers to adjust to the ground level. Two of the legs also come with roller wheels, given the heaviness of the unit, which makes it challenging to maneuver for one person. With that said, maneuver this unit with at least two people for easy transporting the unit. Overall, this unit is excellent for large groups of people and is rated the top pick on the grilling market.
- It comes with four stainless steel burners
- Offers a cooking flat grilling surface of 501-square inches
- Provides a griddle cooking surface of 604-square inches
- Comes with a matchless ignition for quick start-ups
- The unit is challenging to maneuver.
- There is no grill cover part of the packaging
Blackstone Table Top Grill – 17-inch Portable Gas Griddle – Best Value
The Blackstone Table Top Gas griddle offers 260-square inches of heavy-duty cooking surface for small servings of food. This 17-inch portable gas griddle has a stainless steel “H” burner design that provides even heat distribution across the cooking surface. It offers quick and fast grilling with 12,000 BTUs. This convenient and portable design is made out of sturdy stainless steel for long-lasting durability.
Therefore, it can withstand the roughness of road trips, camping, and tailgate parties. If these suggested outside activities don’t work out due to the weather, then no big deal; instead, make a huge breakfast at home with bacon, eggs, sausage, and pancakes. It uses propane gas to produce heat, so it’s safe to use anywhere. It comes with an electric igniter for easy start-ups and a built-in grease catcher for easy dumping.
The grilling surface is made to flip over; then, be placed back on the grill upside down, like a lid, for easy storage and traveling. The stainless steel surface makes it simple to clean up by using a damp paper towel. This portable grill has so many features; you will certainly not believe the price it is sold for on the gas griddle market, but without a doubt, it is the best value.
This lightweight design doesn’t have any food preparation surface, but you can always have your food prepped and ready to go before it’s time to grill. Unfortunately, the grease cup is a little small, but if you empty it often, it will always be ready to catch the grease. Overall, this unit is equipped for pretty much anything when it comes to grilling.
- Griddle surface is made to flip over for easy travel
- The steel surface makes it easy to clean
- H-shaped burner for even heat distribution
- It is made out of sturdy stainless steel
- Lacks space for food preparation
- The grease cup is very small
Royal Gourmet PD 1300 Portable 3-Burner Propane Gas Grill Griddle – Runner Up
The Royal Gourmet PD 1300 gas grill comes with three stainless steel burners that can be controlled separately with 9,000 BTUs for each, and a total of 27,000 BTUs of cooking power. It comes equipped with a commercial grade stainless steel control panel that provides professional quality and enhanced durability. Located on the control panel are three heat dial regulators for controlling the height of the flame. The red button ignition system makes it easy to light the grill within one push.
Once the grill is lit, the heat spreads evenly across the non-stick 316-square-inch porcelain enamel griddle top cooking surface. The cooking surface retains heat evenly, locking in the juices to give a mouth-watering flavor to your food, and also make the meat very tender. The griddle can quickly grill up hash browns, bacon, rice, hamburgers in no time. It even can cook up to 15 pancakes at once for a hearty family breakfast. The Royal Gourmet design comes with a side removable drip cup to catch extra runoff drippings of grease and makes for easy clean-up.
For your convenience, the flat top grill comes with a regulator for a 20-pound tank of propane gas, so you will know when your tank runs empty. It comes with a cover for portability and easy storing. Overall, the ultra-portable design makes it easy for tailgate parties, camping, or picnics and can be transported anywhere without any difficulty. The 3-burner gas griddle is rated as the runner-up on the grilling market.
- Provides three different burners and settings
- Designed with a grease slot for collecting meat juice and grease
- Compact, portable, and lightweight design
- Evenly distributes heat across the grilling surface
- Unit doesn’t come with cleaning tools
- It doesn’t offer any place for food preparation
Camp Chef Flat Top Grill 600 with Patio Cover — Bundle – Also Consider
The Camp Chef Flat Top Grill 600 comes with four stainless steel burners with 12,000 BTUs. Each burner has a tent stainless steel covering that goes over the burners to protect them from food droppings. It comes with a stainless steel control panel where you can adjust the flame for different levels of grilling. The auto-ignition makes it quick and easy to get the flame started and flow beneath the grilling surface. The unit allows for two different ways of grilling: griddle cooking or on grill grates.
The interchangeable flat top griddle makes for easy cooking of foods like rice, vegetables, bacon, eggs, or pancakes. Then switch to grill grates to make burgers, chicken, steak, kabobs, or hotdogs. The flat top grill 600 has two large side shelves that you can use for food prep, grilling tools, or serving plate and can be folded for extra storage space when not in use. Connected to the left side table is a drip pan to catch the runoff grease of griddle cooking.
The grilling cart comes with four legs and two-industrial strength, caster wheel on one side for easy maneuverability; it also comes with two shelves for extra storage of grilling tools and supplies. The unit includes a weather-resistant patio cover to help keep the grill looking its best. Overall, users really like this grill for great grilling experience when making breakfast, lunch, or supper. Many also consider the flat top grill 600 for its exceptional quality at an affordable price in today’s grilling market.
- Has a large flat top griddle cooking surface
- Comes with automatic ignition for easy start-ups
- Has plenty of room for food prep
- Has both a grill and griddle cooking surface
- Doesn’t come with a lid or grill cover
Best Flat Top Grill Buying Guide 2019
British Thermal Unit (BTU)
BTU is the measure of energy and heat content that each burner produces. The higher the BTUs are, the more heat a grill can generate. Many units have anywhere from 12,000 BTUs and up. The more heat distribution, the more evenly your food will be cooked.
Even Distribution of Heat
Having a grill that doesn’t distribute heat evenly could leave part of your food uncooked or burnt. However, when your flat grill top has even heat distribution, the food will be cooked at the same temperature and at the same rate. Look for a grill that offers high-quality tube burners and has plenty of airflow for even distribution of heat.
The grill that you choose should be safe and reliable without any worries of grease flare-ups or a gas leak. You will want to have a flat grill design that offers a drip pan to catch all the runoff grease; this will keep the grease away from your food as well. The electric lighting system must be in good working order and lined up correctly to light up the grill safely.
For sure, you will get the grill quality that you buy, and it’s not all about the money; instead, it’s about the quality of the flat top grill. For instance, Blackstone, Camp Chef, and Royal Gourmet are known as high-quality flat top grills with different price range options.
Just like other appliances, the flat top gas grill is also a valuable investment. Any quality grill should be constructed from heavy-gauge and corrosive resistant materials like stainless steel and porcelain enameled steel. Those grills that have an enhanced construction do retain heat a lot better than other grills, making it feasible and retainable for an evenly heated cooking surface. For certain, if you look at purchasing a grill that is poorly made, then the likelihood of it letting you down within the first few years is high.
What to Look for in a Flat Top Grill
So, we’ve established by now that a grill is a good investment you need, even though you didn’t realize it earlier! Except, what do you look for when selecting a flat top grill? Well, as the old expression says, bigger is better, in terms of grilling. The larger the grilling surface is, the more food can be prepared at once to accommodate a more massive crowd. Other things to look for in a flat top grill are listed below:
Number of Burners
Flat top grills come with a different amount of burners ranging from 12,000 BTUs to 27,000 BTUs. The BTU is what determines the amount of heat that is supplied to the food. It is best to have separate heat zones for each burner for even cooking. If you are planning a gathering with a big crowd, you may want at least a four-burner unit. A four-burner unit with separate heat zones will allow you to keep prepared food warm while the remaining food is being prepared.
The Thickness of Cooking Plate
The cooking plate of many flat top grills is typically designed with either stainless steel or cast iron. Both materials are great for cooking food evenly when there is the right amount of thickness. It is best to look for a flat top grill with 0.75 inches of thickness, like most restaurant-grade griddles.
There are several sizes when it comes to flat top grills. Some of the table flat top grills range around 24-square inches and can handle enough food for a small family gathering. These are typically very portable and can fit in the trunk of your car. If you’re looking for a patio or deck grill that can prepare food for a large group, say for a birthday party or backyard barbecue, you may want to consider a 36-square-inch flat grill.
Ease of Maintenance and Cleaning
Typically, flat top grills are relatively easy to clean in comparison to the traditional grates, because there are not as many little crevices where food can fall in and hide. This is not saying that flat top grills don’t retain grease, because that isn’t the case.
An excellent flat top grill will have an effective grease management system to ensure that the extra fat runs off in a drip cup and away from your food. With most units, you only need warm soapy water and a cloth to wash off the flat grill surface.
If you’re looking for a flat top grill to take camping, picnics, or the beach, then you will want the flat grill to be portable. Many portable flat top grills are tabletop units that are great for tailgate parties and traveling from place-to-place. Other units that are designed with a cart style design have at least two durable wheels to maneuver the unit around. These styles, on the other hand, are more challenging to transport in your vehicle.
The Care and Maintenance of a Flat Top Gas Grill
Like any other appliance, you will want to make sure it is well taken care of for many years of grilling enjoyment. If you clean the flat top grill after every use, then it will surely last for a long time. Here is the best option for cleaning one of these grills. Firstly, you will want to get some paper towels, warm water, and dish soap. You also need to be sure that the flat top grill is cooled down.
Secondly, wet the paper towel and begin wiping across the griddle. If it becomes too gritty, then get another paper towel each time until all the grease is wiped off. Thirdly, if the flat top grill is still a little greasy, add a little dish soap to the wet paper towel. These steps should clean the surface of the flat top grill thoroughly.
Frequent Asked Questions
1) Are griddle grills a better source of cooking than the traditional grill grates?
When it comes to cooking food, both griddle grills and those with grill grates serve a different purpose when it comes to grilling food. For instance, it would be challenging to fry an egg on a grill grate. If you like grilling marks on your meat, then you will want the grill grate option. Neither one of these grill tops is better than the other when it comes to cooking quality grilled food. In fact, both grill styles are great for grilling food.
2) Where’s the best place to store the gas bottle for a new flat top gas grill?
Gas bottles can be stored under the grill, even if you’re not using your grill all the time. However, it is best to disconnect the gas bottle when it’s not being used. It also is recommended to place a cover over your grill and propane tank to protect it from all weather conditions.
3) There is a smell coming from the flat top grill. Does that mean there is a leak somewhere?
The connector that goes from the gas grill to the gas bottle may leak if it is not connected correctly. If you get a whiff of gas or hear a hissing sound when the tank is turned on, these are signs that there may be a leak. To find a leak, apply soapy water all over the hose and connections, and then turn on the valve. If there is a leak, then foam-like bubbles will begin to form. After finding a gas leak, always replace the problem, because leaking gas is very unsafe. If you don’t find anything and still think there is a leak, then consult with a professional.
4) What’s the best way to avoid flare-ups in a gas grill?
Flare-ups surges come from fat drippings. Flare-ups are not 100 percent avoidable, there are some things that you can do to keep it down, starting with cleaning the food residue and grease off of the grill grates. You can also minimize the amount of cooking oil or spray used on the grates and cut the fat off the meat. Cleaning the grill after every use also will help, but nothing is full proof when it comes to flare-ups.
5) What is the safest way to light a gas grill?
Open the gas valve, and then turn on the first burner closest to the matchless ignition. Next, push the red ignition button, and the first burner will light. Once the primary burner is lit, adjust the height of the flame; then, begin turning the other heat adjustments up for the remaining burners. Level out the heat as desired for an evenly grilling experience.
6) How do flat top grills work?
Flat top grills look a lot like electric griddles. However, the performance between the two is very different when it comes to how it heats up. Flat top grills heating elements are circular rather than horizontal. This heating technology heats up the cooking surface evenly and creates a hot cooking surface.
7) Is it healthy to cook on a flat top grill?
Cooking food on a flat top grill has become another technique to take pleasure in grilled food. With a comparable construction as a griddle, a flat top design bakes in the moisture of the food and oils you provide. It removes the risk of burning your food, unlike the traditional grills. This cooking method not only holds in all the nutrients and moisture while cooking but also provides the grill taste that you crave.
8) Can you use cast iron skillets on a flat top grill?
No, it is important to treat your flat top grill surface carefully. Dragging a cast-iron skillet across the cooking area could damage the surface.
9) What type of foods can be cooked on a flat top grill?
Pretty much anything you want to grill up from rice, vegetables, or burgers. You could make breakfast as well, such as eggs, bacon, sausage, and pancakes or French toast. Flat top grills are also great for making marinated meats.
10) Does a flat top grill make grilling marks on the food?
Flat top grills don’t show any grill markings on your food. However, there are some models that come with a removable flat top griddle with grill grates underneath, giving you the best of both grilling options. Camp chef models offer both grilling options.
So, there you have it. Five flat top grills each with distinctive characteristics all available for you to pick from, so which one will you choose. A grill with both a griddle plate and grill grates or separately? How many BTUs are you looking to have? Are you cooking for a small or large group of people? These are very important questions you should be asking yourself. If you haven’t decided on the exact flat grill you want, then refer back to some of our top picks in this review.
To refresh your memory, we provided information on the best top flat grills for the 2019 market that suits all budgets and needs. In terms of which grill can do it all when it comes to grilling on a griddle surface, and grill grates are our top pick, the Camp Chef Flat Top Grill. Another great choice with porcelain enamel griddle cooking is our runner up, the Royal Gourmet PD 1300 Portable 3-Burner Propane Gas Grill Griddle.