Smallest Barbecue Options: Top Picks of 2018!

Oct 11, 2018 | Grills, Reviews

Looking for a small barbeque that you can easily pack up and take with you on your camping trip? No problem!
Everyone loves a good barbeque when they’re out camping with some friends. Throwing thick steaks on the grill while enjoying the outdoors is the ultimate outing. Of course, you need a portable, yet efficient grill by your side.

We’ve checked out a lot of different barbeques, and have finally come up with three of the best ones for you to choose from, and they’re all from reliable manufacturers.

Each grill has their own set of impressive features, but our favorite one by far is the Weber Smokey Joe 14-inch portable grill. It’s affordable, durable, and lightweight, making it the perfect small barbeque.

However, we know that everyone has their own preferences when it comes to barbeques, so we’ve given you two more grills that will also blow you away. Now, let’s get grilling!

Top 3 Small Grills

NameCooking SurfaceWeight 

Weber

148.49 sq. inches

9.5 lb

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Weber

189 sq. inches

28 lbs

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Char-Griller

153 sq. inches

37 lbs

Check Price

Weber

Cooking Surface

148.49 sq. inches

Weight

9.5 lbs

Check Price

Weber

Cooking Surface

189 sq. inches

Weight

28 lbs

Check Price

Char-Griller

Cooking Surface

153 sq. inches

Weight

37 lbs

Check Price

1. Best Overall

Weber Smokey Joe

Our Rating

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The Smokey Joe is 15.6” high, 15.6” wide, 9” deep, and it weighs 9.5 lbs. Since the grill isn’t very tall, you may have to consider bringing something along to put the grill on. In this case, a small collapsible table will do just fine.

Now, let’s take a look at the most important part of the grill, which is the bowl. To begin with, we were pleased to see that the bowl design on the Smokey Joe is just about the same that Weber uses on their more expensive grills. What we mean by this is that the bowl is large enough for you to put a variety of different food on. More specifically, you have a whopping 147 square inch cooking surface!

Yet another clever decision by Weber is to use a triple-nickel coating, which is pretty impressive for a grill at this price. While we’re on the subject of the price, the Smokey Joe is quite affordable. Basically, for under $50, you get a great grill with a substantial cooking surface.

Pros and cons

  • Well known brand
  • Decent cooking surface
  • Affordable
  • Portable
  • The bottom can clog easily
  • Legs can be a bit shaky

2. Best Value

Weber Q1000 LP Grill

Our Rating

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After seeing the Smokey Joe Grill and the Q1000, we’ve noticed a pattern. Weber is cleverly making grills that appear expensive, yet they’re amazingly affordable. While the Q1000 is more expensive than the Smokey Joe, it’s still a great grill for the price.

The Q1000 is 16.32” high, 16.16” wide, and 28.41” deep. It weighs 28.5 lbs, making it portable, and yet again, great for camping.

The Q1000 has an electric ignition, making it more convenient for those of you who hate handling matches. The great thing about this model is that the ignition button lights up the burner in record time. But more importantly, the temperature control is great. The cooking surface heats up evenly in every corner, both at the lowest and the highest temperature. Ultimately, you don’t have to worry about your food cooking at different speeds.

The cooking surface is, yet again, impressive with 189 square feet to cook on.

Pros and cons

  • Easy to clean.
  • Ample cooking space.
  • Affordable
  • Only one burner

3. Best Small Kamado

Char-Griller Akorn Jr.

Our Rating

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Finally, let’s take a look at the Char-Griller Akorn Jr. The manufacturers at Char-Griller make a variety of different portable barbeques, and this Akorn Jr. is definitely our favorite.

First of all, the Akorn Jr. is 20.5” high, 21.5” wide, 25.3” deep, and it weighs 37 lbs. As you can see, it’s heavier than our previous two entries. Unfortunately, this grill doesn’t have any wheels, which we’ll list as a con.

On the other hand, assembling this grill takes only up to 15 minutes, which is pretty impressive. Let’s face it, who wants to waste time on a difficult-to-assemble barbeque when they’re hungry?

The exterior of the Akorn Jr. is rugged-looking with a powdered steel coating, but the interior is covered with a porcelain steel coating. As for the cooking surface, the Akorn Jr. has 153 square inches of grill space. The grill itself is cast iron, making it a pleasure to cook juicy steaks on.

The downside of this grill is the stand. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like it’s stable, or durable for that matter.

Pros and cons

  • Cast Iron Grates
  • Kamado grill on a budget
  • Easy to clean
  • Stanlacklusteruster

Things to Consider in a Small BBQ Grill

If you’re looking for a compact barbeque that you can take along with you wherever you go, then there are specific things you need to be mindful of. To help you out, here is a short list of some key features to look for:

Portability

The first thing you need to check out is the size of the barbeque. Obviously, if you’ll be using it on camping trips, you’ll need a lightweight, compact barbeque that’s easy to carry. Don’t forget, you need to be able to fit it in your car, along with your camping gear.

Cooking surface

Depending on how much you plan on cooking, or rather, for how many people, you need to check how large the cooking surface is. For example, if you’re going on a trip with some friends, you want to be able to cook all your food at the same time. No one likes waiting for their steaks while others eat.

Temperature control

Temperature control is key if you want your food to be cooked evenly. Check whether the grill has good vents so you can control the temperature as you cook. If it doesn’t, you’ll end up with meat that’s not cooked through evenly.

Conclusion

Now that you know what each barbeque has to offer, it’s up to you to choose your favorite! If you want a reliable, yet affordable grill, we suggest the Weber Smokey Joe 14-inch portable grill. It’s a lightweight barbeque that’s amazingly budget-friendly.

However, you won’t go wrong with our other two entries either. Ultimately, these small barbeques are all great for camping trips.

References

Billy Stewart

Chef and Reviewer for Barbequesmoked.com

Barbeque Smoked

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