Akorn Grill Review: Delicious, Smoky BBQ on a Budget!

Kamado grills have always been a premium, luxury option that only passionate grill experts would invest in. 

Now, the Akorn Kamado charcoal grill makes it possible for all the grill lovers to experience the versatility of cooking within a respectable budget. 

The history and aesthetic of a traditional Japanese Kamado is still persistent among the cooking community. Akorn with their modern twist has made this accessible for every barbecue fan out there. 

In this Akorn grill review, we will take an in-depth look to see what makes this such a favorite among so many people.

Char-Griller E16620 Akorn Grill Review

Specifications:

  • Insulation : Triple-walled
  • Material : Durable steel  
  • Dampers Type : Adjustable top and bottom
  • Warming Rack : Removable
  • Heat Gauge : Stainless Steel
  • Front Wheels : Large 8 inch  
  • Cooking Grates : Cast iron
  • Temperature : 200°- 700° F
  • Total Cooking Area : 447 sq. in.

Features and Functionalities:

Grilling Surface:

It’s hard to find a good outdoor grill with a larger cooking surface unless you are willing to spend a fortune on it. 

Akorn Kamado Charcoal grill comes with 314 square inches of primary cooking space which is more than generous for 5-6 stakes. 

The warming rack is 133 square inches which makes the total cooking area around 447 square inches

The grill grates are made out of solid cast iron. Cast iron provides great durability and high heat. 

The removable warming racks make it really easy to transfer food to the plate. It is also very handy for cleanups. 

Temperature Control:

To get authentic charcoal flavors in your meat, you need high temperature and easy to control functions. Luckily, Akorn grill provides both of those things. 

It has triple-walled insulation that retains heat and maintains proper temperature. 

The temperature goes from 200-700 degrees Fahrenheit which makes it really convenient for larger chunks of meat like lamb chops or beef ribs. 

Locking Wheels:

Charcoal grills are comparatively heavier than standard gills so moving them around is an easy job. 

Akorn however, comes with two large 8-inch front wheels conveniently move it anywhere you want. 

The locking mechanism makes it safe and secure so it doesn’t move a bit while cooking. 

Adjustable Dampers:

This Akorn Kamado Kooker comes with adjustable dampers for both top and the bottom. 

The top dampers maintain the airflow while cooking and control the heat with its built-in temperature gauge.

The bottom damper creates a perfect equilibrium for precise heat control. This is a very well-engineered system that maintains even heat while cooking. 

Easy Dump Ash Pan:

Ash is a common thing for charcoal grills. It takes extra care and cleanup to maintain a charcoal grill than a gas one. Akorn char-grill is no exception. 

To make the cleanup easy, it comes with an easy-dump ash pan.

The pan gathers all the ash and you simply empty it on the bin. It’s quick and practical. 

Folding Side Shelf:

If you think this girl is too small for you as it doesn’t have any surface to keep the utensils, you are here to be surprised. 

It comes with two convenient side shelves with utensil hooks. When you are not working, it folds away and becomes compact. This is perfect for storage. 

Design: Practical and Convenient

The Akorn Kamado char-grill comes in thick steel construction with a ceramic coating on the inside. Even though it is a traditional design., it has a lot of modern twists and features. 

The modern take on this unique grill adds the best of both worlds. You get the classic smoky charred flavor in your meat while having the convenience to use it freely. 

As it is made out of three-layered stainless steel, the heat distribution is very equal and even. 

One of the best things about stainless steel is, it is durable while maintaining a lightweight feature. So you get years of usage out of this while being highly portable. 

The sturdy legs with wheels mean you can easily bring it out and set it up. Although we don’t advise on keeping it outside as stainless steel is prone to rust.

With the foldable side shelves, removable warm racks, and locked wheels, it is one of the most practical charcoal grills out there. 

Performance: High Heat Cooking

People love Akorn Char-Griller E16620 because of its high heat cooking abilities. With it’s 314 square-inch surfaces, it can cook for a lot of people.

Whether you’re throwing a BBQ party or you are just hanging out with your friends and family, this gorgeous grill can be a great addition. 

If you are new to Kamado grills, then be prepared for a learning curve. They are traditional in functionality. Kamado grills are nothing like your average gas, electric, or kettle grills. 

The top and bottom dampers are what helps you control the heat and temperature. You have to be instinctive about it. If you are smoking meat, this is a very important feature to look for. 

Akorn Char-griller not only cooks an amazing barbecue, but it can also be used as a slow cooker and smoker. 

When you get the hang of those adjustable dampers, you will love to experiment on this thing. From juicy smokey ribs to pulled porks, you will be able to bring out the BBQ flavors to perfection.

Portability: Mounted Cart

As we have mentioned earlier, the foldable side shelves make it really easy to store away. However, it is a relatively heavy grill.

Traditional charcoal girls are made out of solid cast iron which is extremely heavy and in some cases, unmovable. 

Akorn uses three layered stainless steel to make it lightweight while keeping the traditional style to it. It weighs around 97lbs and comes with three long legs. 

The legs are at the perfect height to cook for an extensive period of time. Whether you are really tall or petite, this size fits every height. 

The 3 legs come with lockable wheels which makes the weight of the grill totally irrelevant. You don’t have to lift it to move, instead, pull and pull it to get out of storage. 

With the measurement of 45 x 31 x 47 inches, you can easily take this grill for your next camping trip. Whether you are going to the beach or for tailgating, take your trusty Akorn griller and kooker for delicious meat and stakes. 

Energy Efficient: Less Charcoal  

Akorn Kamado grills are popular for their energy-efficient design and ease of use. You can use this grill for versatile cooking and grilling.

Since you get total control over the airflow, this grill is perfect to try many new cooking techniques. You can roast, grill, bake, or slow cook to use it as a classic conventional oven. 

As it is energy efficient, you can slow cook for hours without having to worry about the cost. It is recommended to use hardwood charcoal for a prolonged period of cooking. 

Pros:

  • Durable Metal Construction.
  • Portable and easy to move around.
  • High-temperature cooking.
  • Deep charred flavor. 
  • Simple design
  • Easy to maintain.

Cons:

  • Stainless steel body; can not be left outdoors for longer. 
  • No smoking accessories. 

Buying Guide for Akorn Char-Griller: What You Need To Know 

Before you go on and buy a charcoal griller for yourself, there are some things that need to be clear. 

To understand what makes Akorn Char-griller and Kooker so unique, we first need to know about the different types of charcoal grills out there. 

Types of Charcoal Grills:

There are many different categories of charcoal grills. Each works a little bit differently than the other. Even though all of them can make tasty grilled meat, each has its own advantages. 

Kettle Grills:

If you are an American, you know how deeply kettle grills are infused into the culture. It’s a quintessentially American thing.

Kettle grills can be found in the majority of backyards in the countryside as they are durable and easy to use. 

A standard kettle grill is spherical-shaped and usually is around 22 inches in diameter. So they are relatively small.

Kettle grill is the best for regular family grilling but might not be suitable to cook for a larger amount of people. They come with a dome-shaped lid that traps the moisture and heat inside for faster cooking. 

This is a great grill for high-heat cooking. It’s designed to be simple and straightforward for someone who doesn’t have prior grilling experience. So anyone can use it. 

The downside is, it’s not very versatile in the temperature control area. If all you want to do is grill simple burgers and steaks, this will satisfy you. 

Barrel Grills:

Barrel grills are popular for their bigger sized cooking surface. They are known as drum smokers which is accurate because they look exactly like steel drums. 

They are designed for smoking and thus have a more controlled temperature system. The steady temperature and even heat distribution allow it to slow cook bigger chunks of meat. 

As barrel grills are relatively bigger and more expensive, people don’t buy them for everyday use. If you are looking for a smoker that can grill and barbecue as well, a barrel grill is the one to pick. 

Because of the size, they are more expensive than kettle grills. Even the most basic one will cost you a few hundred bucks. 

So if your primary concern isn’t a smoker, a barrel grill might not be for you.

Ceramic Grills:

A ceramic grill, also known as kamado grill, is a very professional and probably the most expensive type of grill out there. 

Ceramic grills come with a solid ceramic interior layer. Ceramic is famous for its even heat distribution abilities. You get superior heat control which is essential for high-quality grilling. 

You can not only cook at the highest temperature possible, you can even go as low as 200 degrees Fahrenheit. 

This is amazing because you get the versatility to slow cook and grill on the same machine. Those who are passionate about grilling often invest in a ceramic griller. 

Kamado grill provides restaurant-quality seats that are impossible to achieve with any other charcoal grills.

The thick ceramic walls provide proper insulation which means you can grill even in the wintertime. 

Why Use Akorn Kamado Char-Griller?

The term Kamado Grills comes from traditional Japanese wood or charcoal fueled cooking appliances called a kamado. 

This traditional kamado was made from clay or ceramic to create an “egg” like a vessel whose round shape would add great versatility to the cooking technique. It is kind of an ancient version of a convection oven. 

Japanese discovered that this layer of ceramic would provide great stability and insulation to the temperature. This allowed them to be fuel-efficient and creative in the cooking methods. 

Akorn Kamado Char-griller and kooker were created with the same mindset. The goal was to bring that ancient and effective design into our modern, everyday life. 

Akorn Kamado Grill is built with refractory ceramic that ensures durability and heat retention. 

You can use it for baking, roasting, smoking, grilling and so much more. The versatility of this griller is unmatched. 

Durability:

While traditional kamado grills are made out of the full ceramic body, this one has a stainless steel exterior. This makes the grill much more durable and resistant.

It won’t shatter or break like other kamado grills. Due to the triple-layered stainless steel construction, you can use it for years without even a scratch on the surface.

User Manual: Char-Griller Akorn Kamado Grill

Akorn Kamado char-grill is really easy to use. If you have never used a kamado grill before, it might take a few attempts to properly understand how it works. But when you do, it’s so worth it. 

Pre-Assembled:

Even though it comes with multiple different pieces, the majority of the parts are pre-assembled for you. The other pieces take just a few minutes to set up. 

It comes with a detailed user manual that guides you with step by step instructions. You don’t even need a helping hand for this. 

Clear Instructions:

The instructions are very clear and simple to understand. Each part comes with individual markings so you can choose them without having to compare them to the sketches on the manual. 

Seasoning:

Before you start to grill on this char-griller by Akorn, you need to properly season the grates.  

As the grates are made out of solid cast iron, they need to be seasoned with olive oil or sesame oil to make them non-stick. 

It’s really simple to do. Just apply a light layer of oil on the grates and let it heat up to 200 degrees and bake for 40 minutes. Season it exactly how you would season your cast-iron pan. 

Cleaning Instructions: Akorn Charcoal Grill

Unless you are Monica from Friends, this is the part we all loathe to do. Cleaning is never fun and it takes a lot of time. 

With a charcoal grill, it is quite annoying to get rid of all the dusty ashes. But thanks to the ash pan on the Akorn Kamado Charcoal grill, it is really easy.

The side hangers on the grill are removable so you can remove them to dispose of the ashes straight into the garbage bin.

The exterior of the Akorn smoker grill is stainless steel which makes cleanup really easy. You just need a wet wipe to remove all the grease and oil. 

The interior of the lid has a porcelain coated finish that can also be wiped to clean. 

The only issue with the cleanup is basically the cast iron grates. They can be quite challenging to clean. But if you don’t clean them properly, they will rust away.

The upside of having no non-stick coating on the grates is durability and high heat cooking. The downside is that they are a pain to clean. 

However, if you season them really well and consistently, over time they will become non-stick. 

Maintenance and Safety Tips for Akorn Kamado Grill

There are some keynotes that you need to focus on if you plan on using this griller and kooker. These tips are appropriate for all Kamado grills in general:

  • Never use lighter fluids or any chemicals to light your charcoal grill. Ceramic is a porous material so it can absorb the fluid and explode.
  • Always remove the ashes after each use. If you don’t then the vents will get clogged and your food won’t cook properly. 
  • When you open the grill, make sure you are being slow with it. That’s because kamado grills have solid insulation. A quick influx of oxygen can cause a rush of fuel for the fire. You might end up losing your beard or eyebrows. So be careful!

Where to Buy Your New Akorn Grill:

The Char-Griller E16620 Akorn Kamado Kooker Charcoal Barbeque Grill and Smoker is an amazing product that can alleviate your grilling experience. 

You can buy this grill from amazon.

Either way, you will get the full manufacturer’s warranty and great customer service. If you want to buy from your local stores, make sure it’s an authentic product and not a decoy. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

01. Are ceramic grills better?

A: Even though it depends on what you are looking for, objectively ceramic grills are much better than any other type.

Ceramic grills are famous for their efficient use of charcoal. As it retains heat better than any other grills, you don’t need as much fuel to keep it hot for longer.  

Ceramic grills also cook evenly from both sides. The dome shape distributes heat properly all around the surface making it very reliable for longer, slower cooking methods.

Even though they are the most expensive type of grills, it is definitely worth the investment. 

02. How do I clean a kamado grill?

A: In order to clean your kamado grill, you need to put some elbow grease. It is a bit tough because of the cast-iron grates. But once you season it properly cleaning becomes easy.

  • To clean your kamado grill, first, you have to set the temperature up to 700 degrees. Let it heat up for half an hour.
  • Now open all the top and bottom dampers to allow the grill to cool down properly. Then carefully remove all the accessories and parts to properly clean each one. 
  • Due to the heat, now it should be easy to scrape off the excess oil and grime from the grill. Use a large grill brush to remove any leftover food that’s stuck to the grates. 
  • Let them soak in warm soapy water for a while before you wash it. Don’t put the wet parts back inside the grill. Let it dry completely before you assemble it again.

Thorough cleaning is necessary once every few weeks. For regular cleaning, use only a wet cloth and soap water to wipe away any excess grease. 

03. Can you use regular charcoal in an Akorn kamado grill?

A: Yes you can, but it is better not to use them. Regular charcoals are not dense enough to handle such high heat for longer. You will end up using twice as much as you need to.

The best charcoal for Akorn kamado grill is hardwood lump charcoal. These charcoal lasts a long time and is perfect for smoking and slow cooking.

It adds an intense charred flavor as well which is always appreciated. No one ever complains their meat is too smoky, right?

04. Can you burn wood in a kamado grill?

A: Yes you can. But you have to be careful about it. Both wood chips and wood chunks work really well on charcoal kamado grills. 

As kamado grills heat up much higher than standard charcoal grills, it can burn dry woods too quickly. To stop that from happening, soak your wood chips in water and use them instead.

Wet woods create a lot of smoke which is great for show cooking. Kamado grills are great for smoking your meat. So using wood instead of charcoal can add depth to the flavor. 

05. Should I use lighter fluid to ignite the charcoal?

A: You should never use any kind of fluid or chemicals to ignite the charcoal. This can not only create weird taste but also can be detrimental. 

Adding any type of chemicals can cause serious fire hazards if you’re not careful. Ceramic is a porous element. It is made out of clay. 

So when you add any lighter fluids to your charcoal, the ceramic absorbs it. And if you heat up the grill too high after that, it can cause serious damage.

The Verdict

Akorn Kamado Char-Griller and Kooker have become a classic choice for being the most versatile grilling machine. Its ability to transform from a high heat roster to a smoker to a slow cooker is unparalleled. 

In this Akorn grill review, we have found it’s a great choice for anyone who is looking for a professional-quality grill experience easily at home.

It is a great traditional grill that can instantly increase your barbecue quality and taste. The fact that it’s so affordable compared to other options means you get quality and performance at a very attractive price.

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