We updated this article in May 2022 to add more information about each featured product, based on extensive testing done by the Good Housekeeping Institute. We added a kamado grill recommendation as well as updated our picks for portable and tabletop grills.

Nothing says summer like grilling up quick summer recipes. And to turn out delicious food with perfectly charred results, you need the right grill (and grill accessories from grill tongs to grill baskets!) to make the job quick, easy and low-mess.

In the Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen Appliances and Culinary Innovation Lab, we’ve tested more than 65 grills over the years to determine which are the best you can buy, including gas grills, charcoal grills, kamado grills, pellet grills and portable grills. We’ve cooked more than 70 steaks and 280 pieces of chicken to determine how well each grill sears, while keeping an eye on smoking and flare-ups. We’ve also toasted more than 1,000 pieces of bread on the gas grills to see how evenly they heat. In addition to performance, we assessed helpful extras like side tables, tool storage, concealed gas tanks and wheels for portability. These are the best grills you can buy in 2022, according to testing:

Best Overall Grill

Genesis II EX-335 3-Burner Natural Gas Smart Grill in Black

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Best Value Grill

4-Burner Propane Gas Grill

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Best Gas Grill

Spirit II E-310 Propane Grill

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Best Grill for Beginners

Commercial Tru-Infrared Gas Grill

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Best Charcoal Grill

Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill

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Best Overall Grill

Genesis II EX-335 3-Burner Natural Gas Smart Grill in Black

  • Heats evenly
  • Includes many features like built-in temperature probes, various lights for grilling in the dark and plenty of storage room
  • Though chicken was still tender and juicy, fatty thighs caused small flare-ups

Weber grills consistently rise to the top in our grill tests. This Genesis II EX-335 Smart Grill is amongst the brand’s newest. It toasted bread the most evenly in our heat distribution test and made a delicious steak with beautiful grill marks and a juicy, pink center when we tested for searing and flare-ups. It comes with two temperature probes that allow you to monitor the internal temperature of food directly on the control panel or via the Weber Connect app.

In addition to the smart features, it’s loaded with other features that make it stand out like a flashlight that attaches to the lid handle; large, sturdy side shelves; knobs that illuminate and plenty of storage space. It has three burners, a searing section and a side burner. If you can do without the smart features, consider the Weber Genesis II E-310, which also performed well in our tests and is available at a lower price point.

Cook surface: 669 sq. in. of total cooking area (513 sq. in. of primary cooking area with tuck-away warming rack that provides 156 sq. in.)
Fuel type: Propane
Dimensions: 47″ x 59″ x 29″
Grate material: Porcelain-enameled cast-iron

Best Value Grill

4-Burner Propane Gas Grill

  • Minimal flare-ups
  • Budget friendly
  • Gets hot quickly; monitor food during cooking

It can be tough to find a great quality grill for under $500, but the NexGrill 4-Burner Propane Gas Grill is an A+ choice for the price tag. It delivers perfect grill marks and space for 28 burgers — all with a gleaming stainless steel exterior. On the side, there’s a burner for heating beans or sauce. And best of all: We saw no smoking or flareups when cooking.

Cook surface: 626 sq. in.
Fuel type: Propane
Dimensions: 46″ x 51″ x 24.75″
Grate material: Stainless Steel

Best Gas Grill

Spirit II E-310 Propane Grill

  • Produces great results
  • Minimal flare-ups
  • Takes a long time to assemble

When it comes to cooking, this three-burner stainless steel grill is just about perfect. In our test, it turned out steaks with gorgeous grill marks that are beautifully rare and juicy in our testing. Chicken came off the grates golden brown, moist and tender — and all this with barely any flare-ups. After using for more than a year, it still heats well and quickly and has stood up to the New York City elements.

We appreciate its many features that make it pleasant to use like sturdy side shelves, tool holders and a shelf to stash extra items. We also appreciate the propane tank holder that lets you know how much gas is left in the tank. It comes with porcelain-enameled cast-iron grates that cook up to 25 burgers.

Cook surface: 529 sq. in.
Fuel type: Propane or natural gas
Dimensions: 44.5″ x 52″ x 27″
Grate material: Porcelain-enameled cast iron

Best Grill for Beginners

Commercial Tru-Infrared Gas Grill

  • Easy to start
  • Created no flare ups
  • Tru-Infrared technology doesn’t allow flames to touch food; some users may miss the charred taste

This Char-Broil grill heated quickly and evenly in our tests and didn’t flare up once. It turned on with no effort at all and got hot enough to sear steak and chicken without burning it. This model features Char-Broil’s Tru-Infrared technology, which is basically a large metal plate that sits below the cooking grates and traps the food’s juices as it cooks. Once the juices hit the plate, they steam and infuse the food with more flavor than it achieves from just being grilled. This design also helps prevent flare-ups. Results were juicy and not dry.

In addition to the Char-Broil’s cooking performance, we liked the simple, two-knob design that quickly responded to adjustments. When you’re done cooking, the entire grill is easy to move and store away.

• Cook surface: 325 sq. in.
Fuel type: Propane or natural gas
Dimensions: 47.2″ x 46.8″ x 22.5″
Grate material: Porcelain-coated cast-iron

Best Charcoal Grill

Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill

  • Large, comfortable stay-cool handle
  • Sturdy
  • Minimal under-grill storage

This Weber kettle is iconic in the industry and well-loved by consumers, so it’s not surprisingly a best-seller (and its slightly less expensive version has more than 1,400 five-star reviews on Amazon). It’s powered by charcoal and features an enclosed ash collector below the grill that makes cleanup easy; just use the lever to swipe the ash into the collector. The structure is sturdy with solid accessories and a removable lid that can be rested on the side of the grill, and it can be rolled around easily for storage in the off-season.

Cook surface: 363 sq. in.
Fuel type: Charcoal
Dimensions: 39.5″ x 27″ x 22.5″
Grate material: Plated steel

Best Pellet Grill

Pro Series 575 Grill Black

  • Large temperature range (can smoke and sear)
  • Sensors monitor cooking process and temperature every 30 seconds
  • Solid build
  • Pricey compared to many gas and charcoal grills

Traeger is known for its wide assortment of large pellet grills designed to grill or smoke a lot of meat at a designated temperature. They use pellets to heat and cook over indirect heat so you won’t get any flareups but will still achieve a smoky taste. In general, pellet grills light might easily than charcoal grills and are less fussy since you just plug them in, make sure the hopper’s full (this one has a large, 18-pound hopper that will last through a long and slow smoke) and press ignite.

Out of all the pellet grills we’ve tested so far, we liked this one for its solid build that’s still easy to move around and its simple-to-use controls. It also connects to an app so you can monitor the temp from afar, which was useful when we cooked brisket overnight. We also tested chicken and steak, which developed a delicate smoke flavor, and ribs, which came out smokier.

Cook surface: 572 sq. in.
Fuel type: Wood pellets
Dimensions: 53″ x 41″ x 27″
Grate material: Porcelain-coated steel

Best Kamado Grill

Classic Joe II

  • Large with plenty of cooking space
  • Can smoke using low temps or grill up to 750ºF
  • Requires a learning curve to master

This kamado grill from Kamado Joe is our best overall kamado grill. It has thick ceramic walls that retain heat well and can withstand temps up to 750ºF. It’s loaded with accessories like a built-in thermometer, side shelves, an ash removal tool, a pull-out ash tray and more. It also comes with a two-tier grilling grate so you can better control your grilling experience.

Kamado grills use charcoal to heat and can be used to smoke at low temps or grill at moderate to high temps. You can also make pizza at high temps — one of our favorite uses. The stand is helpful to move it around as it’s very heavy. Little details that set it apart from its competitors include a seal around the lid to allow for a soft close and markings on the vent to better control the temp and smoke levels.

Cook surface: 256 sq. in.
Fuel type: Charcoal
Dimensions: 26.4″ x 26.4″ x 36″
Grate material: Stainless steel

Best Stand-Up Portable Grill

Traveler Portable Gas Grill

This portable grill is good enough to stand-in as your full-time grill. It has a solid and sturdy build that can stay put year-round, but it’s still easy enough to fold up and light enough to roll around. Our pros loved that it has a latch that locks the lid in place when it’s in the folded position. It has a cast iron grate that can fit up to 15 burgers and reaches full heat in less than 10 minutes.

In our tests, steak and chicken got beautiful sear marks, and we didn’t experience any flareups. It lights with the press of an igniter button and uses a one-pound propane tank (or you can purchase an attachment that allows it to be used with a full propane tank). It has a disposable drip tray, which isn’t common among the portable grills we tested and makes cleanup easy.

For a portable grill without wheels, consider the Weber Travel Q, which scored high marks in our portable grill test.

• Cook surface: 320 sq. in.
Fuel type: Propane
Dimensions: 37.2″ x 43.6″ x 23″
Grate material: Cast iron

Best Tabletop Grill

Roadtrip 225 Tabletop Grill

  • Small, but powerful
  • Steak and chicken thighs were able to get nice sear marks
  • Lid doesn’t latch shut for smooth transporting

This portable, tabletop grill is small but mighty. It features cast iron grates and 225 square inches of cooking space; it cooks with up to 11,000 BTUs. It uses a one-pound tank of propane that easily and securely attaches to an attachment on the back of the grill. It starts with the press of a button and has two dials that respectively heat the inner and outer rings of the burner. Its feet are sturdy and balanced, and the grill can easily be transported by one person. The grease-collection tray is located inside the body of the grill and can be drained and then washed in the sink with soap and water.

In our tests, we appreciated how much cooking area the grill offered for its size and how we were able to achieve deep sear marks without having to worry about flare-ups. It produced delicious steak and golden-brown chicken thighs with crispy skin and barely any burnt marks.

• Cook surface: 225 sq. in.
Fuel type: Propane
Dimensions: 28.81″ x 18.31″ x 10.63″
Grate material: Cast iron

Best Electric Outdoor Grill

Pulse 2000 Electric Grill

  • Can use in areas where charcoal or propane grills are not allowed
  • Digital temperature control
  • Dual grill zones
  • Requires proximity to an electrical outlet

For locations that may not allow a traditional outdoor grill, this Weber electric grill is the next best thing. Simply plug it in and turn it to the desired temperature using the digital precision temperature control. It works with the Weber Connect App to remotely monitor the grill and food temperatures and also has dual cooking zones to simultaneously grill two different foods. Take note that you’ll need to wait for it to preheat, but thanks to the digital thermometer, you’ll know exactly when it reaches the right temperature. It can be used as a tabletop grill or with a grill cart (sold separately), and the control panel removes so it can be stored in a case indoors while the rest of grill can remain outside.

In our tests, we found the grill to be easy to use, and it cooked a strip steak with beautiful sear marks to 145ºF in about eight minutes. Chicken thighs came out juicy and golden, too, in under 30 minutes.

• Cook surface: 278 sq. in.
Fuel type: Electric
Dimensions: 15″ x 28″ x 23″ (with cart 42″ x 44″ x 24″)
Grate material: Porcelain-enameled cast iron

In the Good Housekeeping Institute, we’ve tested more than 65 grills over the years, including gas grills, charcoal grills, kamado grills, pellet grills, portable grills, indoor grills, electric grills and more. To determine which grills to test, we scour our data to determine which grills seem the most interesting and popular. We also communicate with brands to learn about their latest models and keep an eye out for innovations and new technology.

When we test all types of grills, we assess performance and ease of use. For gas grills, we cover the surface with sliced white bread to determine how evenly the grill distributes heat, and we cook steak and chicken to evaluate how quickly they cook with the least amount of flareups. We cook steak and chicken on charcoal grills as well, but we weigh ease of use more heavily since charcoal can vary in terms of distribution and heat retention.

Our ease-of-use assessment begins with assembling the grill. We value clear instructions, labeled parts and simple assembly. We also consider helpful accessories like shelves, side tables, tool holders, built-in thermometers, wheels, type of igniters and more. After we complete our testing, we compare all of our notes to determine which performed the best.

A small sampling of the grills we tested

What to look for when buying the best grill

✔️ Fuel type: The first thing to consider is what type of grill you’d like. The two main types are gas and charcoal. Gas is easy to use, while charcoal is trickier to master but delivers a smokier taste. There are also kamado grills, which use charcoal, and pellet grills, which use wood pellets. (More on the pros and cons of each below.)

✔️ Size: Once you narrow down the type of grill you’d like to buy, think of how much room you have to use and store it, as well as how many people you’re cooking for at a time. Three-burner gas grills are ideal for families of four or fewer and can still handle the occasional party. A 22-inch diameter is common for charcoal grills: Any larger is ideal for cooking more at once, and smaller is better for storage. If you don’t have a lot of room, consider a portable grill that’s typically much smaller but does the trick in terms of turning out a delicious meal.

✔️ Accessories: While side shelves and tool holders may not seem important, they make the overall grilling experience smooth. We also like shelves underneath the grill for storage, a quality set of wheels, tank holders for gas grills and more.

What type of grill is best?

When buying a new outdoor grill, the two biggest players are gas and charcoal, but electric, kamado and pellet grills are also fair game. When selecting what type of grill to buy, consider how often you’ll be grilling, the amount of space you have for storage, what flavors you prefer and the amount of time and attention you’ll want to spend cooking. Here are the basics on each:

✔️ Gas grills are the most common type. They’re great because they offer excellent control of the heat (the ability to adjust the burner knobs makes it less likely that you’ll end up with burnt brisket!), plus they ignite with the push of a button, heat up quickly and are easy to clean. It’s the go-to option for no-fuss grillers who plan to barbecue frequently. Just keep in mind that you’ll need fuel from a propane tank or natural gas line on your property.

✔️ Charcoal grills require briquettes or lump charcoal to ignite. Charcoal is more hands-on and takes time to heat up and cool down, but it imparts a better, smokier flavor than gas because it often gets hotter. It’s really for grilling purists.

✔️ Kamado grills use charcoal to heat but are often made of ceramic and have thicker walls than charcoal grills. They can reach very hot temperatures, like a pizza oven, and they retain heat well for low-and-slow smokes.

✔️ Electric grills plug in and can’t be beat for ease-of-use or convenience — especially the grills that can be used indoors or at apartment complexes that don’t allow charcoal or gas grills. Just don’t expect steaks or burgers cooked on an electric grill to taste like the ones from a real BBQ.

✔️ Pellet grills are a growing category that use electricity and hardwood pellets made out of wood scraps to heat. Pellets provide a delicious, authentic hardwood flavor to food but are costly.

Why trust Good Housekeeping?

Nicole Papantoniou is the director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen Appliance and Culinary Innovation Lab, where she oversees all kitchen appliance content and testing. This is her third season testing grills for Good Housekeeping, and she has had her hands on at least 35 grills and counting. She’s a trained cook, recipe developer and grill aficionado.

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