Best Small Gas Grill Reviews
Just because you use a small grill doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have high expectations. It just means you don’t have a lot of space, but you do expect your grills to have some of the same bells and whistles as those big monster BBQ grills. And you can definitely have it. Many of these small gas grills come with a decent-sized grilling area, side tables, and a couple of burners. Here are a few tips and reviews to help you start looking for that small gas grill that will give you that big grill experience you crave.
Weber 48070001 Spirit II E-210 NG Mocha – Best Seller
This two-burner grilling system works well in compact spaces and comes with a ton of features, including the powerful GS4 system. The Weber Spirit II comes with handy side tables that are convenient for trays, plus six hooks for hanging your cooking utensils. It also comes with the Infinity ignition system, a grease management system, and Porcelain-enameled Flavorizer Bar.
Tons of Features
Built to work on balconies, the Weber Spirit II is packed with convenient features. On top of the main cooking area, you also get a warming rack with an additional 90 sq. inches of cooking room. Plus, you get a thermometer that is mounted in the center to help monitor the grill’s internal temperature.
Plenty of Room
The main cooking area is 360 sq. inches giving you plenty of room to cook an entire meal. With even heat distribution, the cast-iron cooking grates give you the durability and performance to make sure all your steaks come out perfectly. It also has an open cart design that gives it a sleek look for your deck.
Sturdy and Stable
This sturdy and stable unit is made of high-quality stainless steel. The Weber Spirit II also features two caster wheels to help you move your grill when you need to. This grill is also iGrill3 compatible, which is sold separately, but a lot of fun to use.
Easy to Assemble
Assembly is pretty easy with simple to follow instructions and a 3D guide. The parts are also easy to identify, and the whole process is pretty straightforward. The Weber Spirit II comes with a 10-year limited warranty, and you can also purchase the iGrill connected thermometer to help monitor your grill from your phone.
It is easy to assemble with clear instructions
The grill has tons of features and comes in a lot of colors
It has a nice open cart design that adds to its appearance
Some of the edges are razor sharp and you can cut yourself easily
It only comes with two wheels, so it isn’t as easy to push and roll
Cuisinart CGG-180T Petit Gourmet Portable Tabletop Gas Grill, Red – Top Pick
With the high performance and compact Cuisinart Petit Gourmet Gas Grill, you get wonderful grill flavor for your family meals. Even though it is compact, you still get a large enough cooking grate to hold eight steaks, eight burgers, six or more chicken breasts, and more than four pounds of fish. It heats up extremely quickly and does not use as much gas as a full-sized grill does.
Great for Camping
Easy to take with you camping or to the game, the Cuisinart Petit Gourmet Gas Grill features a spill-resistant drip tray, a carrying handle, a grill lid latch, and legs that fold. Featuring a 145 sq. inch grilling area, you get even heat distribution, so your food comes out perfectly. Fueled by propane, the Petit Gourmet comes with an easy to use twist start ignition in this durable and solid grill.
This energy-efficient grill is the perfect size grill for patios and decks, since it keeps the heat near its cooking surface. The stainless-steel burner uses a powerful 5,500 BTUs and comes with a porcelain-enameled grate that heats food evenly. It is also easy to clean with its removable grate that is safe to put in the dishwasher.
Lightweight and Portable
Weighing only 13 ½ pounds, the Petit Gourmet includes a briefcase-style carrying handle to easy portability. Its stabilizing feet and aluminum legs set up quickly while the integrated lid lock helps to keep your grill secure during transport.
Great for Tailgating
Easy to move, setup, store, and clean, the Petit Gourmet is perfect to use on a table or truck tailgate. This is also a great choice when grilling at the beach or campsite, and it can also be taken on your boat or RV.
The drip tray holds a lot of grease, and the grill is easy to clean
You can cook with the lid closed
It is a nice lightweight grill that is easy to carry
The lighter doesn’t work very well
The legs do not lock when they are unfolded
Weber 1141001 Go-Anywhere Gas Grill, ONE Size, Black – Best Value
With a ton of features, the Weber Go-Anywhere Gas Grill is portable and perfect when tailgating, camping, or at the beach. If you like to cook in the outdoors, the Go-Anywhere eliminates flare-ups with their porcelain-enameled cooking grates that were created to give you the best results using low-temperature settings. The bowl and lid are made of premium-grade steel that features porcelain-enamel that has been baked on both in and outside.
Giving you incredible durability, even in a rugged setting, the Go-Anywhere Gas Grill features a cooking area of 160 sq. inches. You also get a push-button ignition for easy and reliable start-ups. And, it features one main stainless steel one burner that gives 6,500 BTU’s per hour.
Providing easy portability, you also get steel plated legs that pivot to lock the lid in place when you are transporting it. The Go-Anywhere also features three nylon handles that are reinforced with glass. And, it features a new grate style that is flatter than previous models, which also covers the burner tube preventing grease from dripping into the pan and catching on fire.
The Weber Go-Anywhere Gas Grill also includes a regulator that lets you adjust the propane output from high to low and fine time the flow when you need it. The cooking surface spreads out heat evenly for a lightweight and affordable grill giving you a good value for your money.
It heats up quickly and has a nice even grilling surface
The heat shield and meat rack are one unit
It is easy to carry and fits well in your trunk
The push-button start doesn’t work very well
It’s more complicated to use with all the extra buttons
Weber 50060001 Q1000 Liquid Propane Grill – Runner Up
The easy to take with you Weber Q1000 is a liquid propane grill that is compact enough to take with you wherever you go. Both fun and functional, the Weber Q1000 has sleek styling and great performance using one stainless steel burner that creates an impressive 8500 BTUs over a 189 sq. inch cooking area. You also get reliable startups with the push-button ignition and a variety of settings with the infinite control burner.
Split Grate Cooking System
Best of all, there is a split grate that lets you use a griddle and grate cooking combination. The Weber Q1000 easily lets you replace one grate with a Q1000 series griddle that is sold separately allowing you more options when it comes to making breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This lightweight and durable grill is made with a cast-iron aluminum construction making it easy to take with you tailgating.
The Weber Q1000 also comes with ergonomic side handles, a sturdy rear and front cradles, large control knobs, and a big grip handle for easy portability. It uses disposable LP cylinders, but it can also be converted into a stationary grill for your deck. Simply purchase the optional LP adapter hose, and you can hook up tanks up to 20 pounds.
Using a variety of temperatures, you can cook anything from hotdogs, chicken, fish, steaks, or burgers. Simply dial in the right heat setting with the adjustable infinite control burner valve to cook your food perfectly. Ready to go right out of the box, the Weber Q1000 is perfect for your next cookout at home or your next camping trip.
This is an easy to clean grill with grates that fit into your sink
The perfect sized grill that is large enough for about four people
It is compact, but still large enough to hold a lot of food
It has an irregular grill surface making cooking a little weird at times
It cooks too hot on the lowest setting
Cuisinart CGG-200 All Foods Tabletop Gas Grill, Stainless Steel – Also Consider
The stainless-steel Cuisinart All Foods Grill is a versatile grill that is a great addition to any backyard. With a compact size, you can use it on a patio or take it with you to the beach or football game. It features a stainless-steel loop burner with 12,000 BTUs and cast0iron cooking grates with a porcelain enamel coating.
This portable tabletop grill heats up quickly with the ability to reach 600 degrees Fahrenheit in under 10 minutes. It can also recovers quickly if you open up the cover to rotate or check on the food. This is an easy to put together grill that also comes with a precise built-in thermometer.
Even Heat Distribution
With the double-wall stainless steel cover, you get even heat distribution giving you professional level results. With quality fittings, including a heavy-gauge propane fitting, this all stainless-steel grill is a well-built grill that uses a 20-pound propane tank for fuel.
Interchangeable Grilling Surfaces
Featuring a heat distributing panel, the Cuisinart All Food Grill gives you a unique and versatile grilling experience with 240 sq. inches of cooking area. With the Versatile Modular Grill Surface system, you get several specialized grill surfaces that you can interchange allowing you to cook pizza, bread, and veggies along with steaks and burgers. Plus, the panels mate securely with the cooking surface and then come apart easily and quickly for cleaning and storage.
Tons of Features
Perfect for balconies or cooking on a table, the Cuisinart All Food Grill can work pretty much anywhere. It comes with stainless-steel side shelves that are easy to fold and give you plenty of room for plates, utensils, and condiments. Plus, you get a handle that stays cool when you touch them. Other features of the All Foods Gas Grill are an easy to use twist start ignition, a sturdy painted steel base, and a precision temperature gauge.
This is a well-built grill that uses quality fittings
It heats up extremely quickly and also cools down in just minutes
Clean up is really easy with the stainless-steel surfaces
The attached hose is too short
The drip tray will fall out if you try to carry it
Best Small Gas Grill Buying Guide
Obviously, the size is important to you since you are looking for a small gas grill. But just because it is smaller than the typical gas grill, it doesn’t mean you still don’t have a few choices. One of your first considerations when choosing a small gas grill is how large the grilling surface needs to be.
It all depends on how much food you plan to cook at one time. With a large grilling surface, you will have an easier time cooking large amounts of food, so if you throw a lot of parties, you want to go with the grill that has a larger cooking area. Consider how many people you usually cook food for when you grill and choose from there. Also, think about any food that you might cook for special occasions and make sure you have enough surface area to cook it all.
Another consideration is to check the burner sizes and make sure they are large enough to cover the whole cooking surface. This will provide even heating allowing your grilling to be consistent. And you want to make sure that the grill can reach a minimum of 600 degrees Fahrenheit for its total temperature.
Cooking Grid Thickness and Material
Cooking grids on high-quality grills are often made of stainless steel, which should resistant chipping and warping as you use the grill. You will also see porcelain-coated steel grids that a nicer quality than the stainless steel, and they can distribute heat more evenly while protecting the material giving your grill a longer lifespan. The best of all is the cast iron cooking grids that heat incredibly evenly and give you the best-grilled food of all three materials.
Not only is it important to think about the material that a grill is made of, but you also want to consider how thick it is. Typically, a cooking grill will wear down over time, so having a thicker grill will help your grill last longer. A thick grid will also give you better heat retention as well as those great grill marks.
Also known as flavorizing bars or plates, flame tamers are found in between the burner and the cooking grid. They help to keep the burners protected from grease and drippings lessening the risk of flare-ups. Plus, they can cause the drippings and grease to vaporize and create a smoky flavor for your food, which tastes awesome.
The more flame tamers you have, the better coverage you get allowing more heat to diffuse and rise from the burner towards the cooking surface. If you have a grill that includes full coverage flame tamers, you will have a cooking surface that provides more even heat. Made of either high-quality ceramic or heavy gauge stainless steel, flame tamers should be corrosion-resistant as they reside in a high wear and tear area of the grill.
The construction and design of the burners is an important consideration when you think about the overall quality of the gas grill you want. Burners are the most commonly replaced part of gas grills, so you want to make sure you have a good-quality grill that won’t require burner replacements soon. You will find different burners on different grills including dual burners that give you more control of the cooking environment and allowing you to cook at different heat levels. You will also see infrared burners that give you great grill marks. Since this is a small gas grill, you probably won’t see these burner features, but you never know with many of the new small gas grills that are entering the market.
If your grill is completely welded and has high polished seams, you know that it is a high-quality grill. Hoods that are double-lined and made of commercial-grade 304 stainless steel also tells you that it is a good grill for heat retention, and it will stop the outside of the hood from becoming yellow.
As you shop for your small gas grill, you will notice a variety of materials used in construction. Typically, you will find steel housing that is good for handling high heat and high-stress environments. Here are the four materials you will see most often in a gas grill:
Cast aluminum – Aluminum will not rust or discolor as it ages.
Cast iron – Very heavy, but also very durable, cast iron may rust if it is not painted correctly.
Enamel-bonded steel – Similar to cast iron, enamel-bonded steel does not rust unless it has a chip. If you do purchase this type of grill, make sure you inspect it periodically for scrapes and nicks.
Stainless steel – While it won’t always be shiny, it will last you a long time. However, stainless steel will show spots, grease, and dust easily.
Many people like to grill at night. If you are one of these people, look for grills that include lighting. An interior light will help you see what you are cooking when it gets dark, so you won’t need a headlight or flashlight to illuminate your cooking area. You will also find grills that include an accent light on a control panel or that have illuminated knobs make it easier to cook at night.
Warranties help keep you from spending money on broken parts when the grill isn’t that old to begin with. A good gas grill will come with a ten-year warranty just on the burners while others will offer a lifetime warranty that includes the parts and replacement labor.
You shouldn’t have to worry about the main ignition switch not working, but it can happen. Having a backup ignition helps in those rare cases by allowing you to ignite your burners with a lighter or a match from the cooking grid surface.
Cleaning and Maintaining Your Grill
Typically, a gas grill resides outside on a patio. And, just because it’s outside, doesn’t mean it still doesn’t need to be cleaned and maintained. When you cook on a grill, salt and grease from your food covers the grill and sitting in high heat will cause all this build-up to harden. When you have a dirty grill, you can start to grow a lot of bacteria, so you need to make sure you clean the grill well and use a good quality grill brush.
As you search for a grill consider the following questions –
Can you easily clean the burners?
Can I remove the grates?
Can you easily remove ash and grease?
Just like any stove or kitchen appliance, as long as you clean your grill properly, you will get a lot of years out of it. If it doesn’t come with one, buy a lined cover to keep your gas grill safe from the elements. You will get even longer use out of a grill if it isn’t at the mercy of debris, dirt, and the sun. Many of these covers not only give you complete coverage, but they also cinch up at the bottom to completely keep dirt and dust out.
There are plenty of other accessories that can be included with your small gas grill including:
Food prep tools
Baskets and pans
It all just depends on what type of accessories you want and what your budget is.
Best Small Gas Grill Buying Guide
How Many BTUs Will I Need?
BTUs, or British Thermal Units, tell you what your grills gas output is once it heats up. Typically, the higher the BTUs, the hotter your grill will get. It also can tell you the most heat output for each burner or the main grill area. Keep in mind that many manufacturers will put all the heat ratings together as the burner output rating to make it appear like a larger number.
And, even if you have high BTUs, it is still possible to lose heat through your grill if it is made of thin material. This means the grill can’t hold in all the thermal units it is producing and will still give you the same results you would get in a quality grill. So, if you see a high BTU rating on a grill that isn’t that big, the manufacturer could be compensating for lightweight construction. And, the more BTUs you have, the faster you will use fuel, which can increase your overall costs.
Do I Need Two Temperature Control Knobs?
You will usually only see one temperature control knob on a small gas grill. But, if you are looking at a grill with two burners, you will need two temperature control knobs to accommodate the temperatures for both zones.
How Much Surface Cooking Area Will I Need?
You will find most smaller gas grills can cook enough food for two to four people, with some able to cook for up to six people. That’s why it is important to know how many people you will be cooking for and what you will be cooking when you choose your grill. You will also need more space on your grate if you are cooking an entire meal than if you are just cooking for a few burgers.
You can expect a 200 sq. in. cooking grate to cook about 12 burners and give them enough room in between allowing them to cook correctly. This is also enough space for a couple of eight-ounce steaks, baked potatoes, and corn on the cob. Basically, you need about a 100 sq. in. cooking area per person when you grill.
What Kind of Burners Will I Need?
You want a burner that is made of either brass or stainless steel. Aluminum tends to burn out, and you can expect cast iron to rust after a while. Also, look for a metal deflector in between the burners and grate to keep the burners protected from grease that is dripping down. Plus, a metal deflector will give you evenly distributed heat that will lessen “hot spots” on the grate.
What Kind of Ignition Do Small Gas Grills Have?
Spark ignition systems are pretty common on most grills these days. Some of these ignitions use a dial or a push button to ignite the spark while others run on a battery. Plus, if your starter fails, having a side manual ignition hole will allow you to use a long fireplace match or a candle lighter to start your fire.
Should I Get a GAs Grill That Uses Natural Gas or Propane?
You will find that most small and portable grills run on propane. If you want to use natural gas, you will need to hook up to your home’s gas line, which takes away from the portable element of your grill.
What Kind of Portability Features Do I Need?
If you plan to transport your small gas grill from your vehicle or RV, look for the following:
A secure latch on the lid of the grill
The grill should stand on end or sit flat
It includes a handy travel case
It needs to be easy to assemble and disassemble for travel or it should be easy to collapse, so it can fit in your trunk
The grill should include wheels to make it easy to move
What Kind of Fuel Tank Does a Gas Grill Need?
The average small gas grill will come with a propane cylinder that is small enough for camping. Typically, this type of cylinder will last you for a couple of meals. However, it can save you money if you buy a conversion kit, so you can use a 20-pound propane tank. The kit itself can run about $100, so if this is something you are serious about, consider that added cost when buying your grill.
Do I Need Shelves?
You don’t need shelves, but they are handy to have. If you are going to be cooking near a close tabletop, then it’s not something to worry about. If you are not, then side tables can come in handy, especially when you are camping.
You will find them in a lot of travel grills. They usually either slide out to use or detach when not in use. As always, make sure the side tables are made with sturdy construction, so that they can hold your utensils and a plate of food, so about five to 10 pounds.
Do I Need Accessories?
It’s not necessarily if you need accessories, it’s more do you want accessories. And for most people, the answer is yes. However, some of these smaller gas grills don’t come with accessories, so these may be something you have to buy separately. So, make sure you save enough money for all the cool features you can’t live without.
A convenient product that serves several purposes, a small gas grill is less messy than a charcoal grill and makes some pretty delicious food. Not only is it easy to heat up in comparison to other types of grills, but you can get a really nice high-quality grill at a very affordable price. Just make sure you are choosing the right grill to match your needs and the food you tend to cook.