A wise chef, Anthony Bourdain once said, “Barbeque may not be the road to world peace, but it’s a start.”
Wonder whether it’s only the joy of barbecues that made him feel so content. All we know is, without a great grill to work with, peace isn’t an option.
The need for a top-notch grill becomes more palpable when you hit the roads for hiking or tailgating or find yourself camping in the middle of nowhere. Carrying a mediocre machine during travel isn’t the wisest thing to do, is it?
So, we figured we would scout out to find the top 10 best tabletop grills for you so that you feel the peace Bourdain was talking about.
So here goes the best of the best tabletop grill reviews.
A tabletop grill is something that sits on a table (duh!).
This variety of grilling machines is usually more compact and portable compared to conventional grills so that you can use them on the go. This doesn’t necessarily mean that their use is limited to wanderers only.
A tabletop grill is perfect for anyone with a limited outdoor cooking space.
Unlike a full-grown grill, these take up the minimum space, store easily and clean easily. In other words, your tabletop will give you all the pleasures of grilling without overwhelming you with the inconvenience of a large, bulky unit.
Even though propane powered tabletop grills are more popular, there are other variants such as electric and charcoal grills in the market. They come in various sizes, shapes, and burner capacities.
However, any tabletop isn’t the best tabletop.
The best outdoor tabletop grill must be a convenient cooking appliance and offer innovative features such as foldable design, more than one cooking zone, temperature control, and much more.
Also, the price shouldn’t be sky-high.
Brace yourself. Here comes the top tabletops for grillers; pros and newbies alike.
This stainless steel tabletop gill by Giantex is a mighty deal. It does everything a full-sized grill does while offering the convenience expected from a tabletop.
This Giantex is literally a giant. The two burners generate a total heat of 20,000 BTUs, which is pretty huge to heat up a tabletop.
Furthermore, these are independent of each other, allowing you to create two separate heat zones for hybrid cooking.
The primary grilling surface is 266 square inches, which means that you can easily cater to a group of 8 or so.
This ergonomic unit comes with features like built-in ignition and lid-mounted thermometer.
Also with this mighty griller, Giantex offers safety assurance. It meets the CSA safety standards so that you won’t need to worry about such a powerful griller at work on your table.
For a machine of this caliber, the built is surprisingly lightweight. In addition to this, foldable legs and locking latches make it amazingly compact. This makes it one of the most portable gas grills for camping.
This stainless tabletop grill is made of 430 stainless steel instead of the 304 variety which is more common. This has its advantages. This material is softer and shows greater resistance to corrosion. Also, the chromium content in this combo is higher, making it gleam more.
The steel construct and the presence of a removable drip tray together make cleaning this unit an effortless business. Assembling this appliance is equally uncomplicated and can be done with a couple of basic house tools.
Giantex Propane Tabletop Gas Grill Stainless Steel is our overall best.
Here’s why we chose it to be our most favorite appliance
The CUISINART CGG-180T is an extremely lightweight and compact unit that you can take anywhere. The briefcase-style handle further eases the job.
The foldable legs unfold outwards as you set it up to get the party started and folds back in when you pack up. These are sturdy quadruplets that can stand anywhere, providing maximum stability to this grill.
The body of this Cuisinart tabletop grill is made of steel while the grilling grate is cast iron.
Cast iron has a good reputation in the grilling industry, as it retains heat pretty efficiently. Moreover, these grates are porcelain enamel coated. The durability of the steel box and lid is enhanced by a dual coat of paint.
This small tabletop grill is propane powered with an additional built-in ignition. This is a feature we seldom expect in a compact system such as this one.
The primary grilling area measures 145 square inches so you can expect to grill 8 burgers or 6-10 chicken breasts at a time. It goes without saying that this is a grill for a group of few, not many.
There is a drip tray to collect run-off. So, this makes cleaning the unit much easier.
Simply scrub it with an abrasive pad or use a wire brush for the grates. The rest of the body can be well taken care of by a dishcloth soaked in soap water.
Light as a feather, compact and functional, the Cuisinart CGG-180T is our top pick for small families who love to grill.
For all you grillers with a charcoal affinity, the Char-Griller E22424 is good news. Get ready for some Texas-style grilling with this one. It is bound to be the center of envy in your tailgate parties.
With a heavy-duty steel construction and a demeanor that resembles barrel grills set horizontally, this unit looks and feels macho. The grilling performance matches the overall look of this product.
The cast-iron grates make up 250 square inches of grilling surface. That’s sufficient to feed a large family or a medium group.
The unit stands on strong steel legs. There are sliding drawers that give you access to the coal and removable ash pan to get rid of the by-product without any effort. A wooden handle on the lid ensures no-burn hazard-free grilling.
Everything about this charcoal grill is purposeful. There are dampers to control airflow and internal temperature, maximizing cooking performance.
You can also use this as a firebox. It fits with the Char-Griller barrel grills with ease. However, there is a catch. Once you turn it into a firebox, there is no going back to being a grill. This is because converting it requires drilling some holes.
Everything about the charcoal grill E22424 by Char-Griller is great, but it is a bit heavy. This may limit its portability. While tailgating with this grill sounds great, taking it along for hiking doesn’t seem like the best idea.
We suggest this unit as an adornment for households with limited outdoor cooking space. It is a great alternative to a full-sized grill if saving space is a priority issue.
The Smoke Hollow by Masterbuilt is a mood lifter. It is a typical tabletop with a limited grilling capacity, but it does its job really well.
What we love about this grill is, it gives you convenience in every way possible.
It is a compact briefcase-style appliance with the lid strongly latched. The large and ergonomic handle makes transporting it absolutely trouble-free.
The single burner is U-shaped and generates 10,000 BTU worth of heat over a 205 square inch of primary grilling surface.
That’s not it though. The manufacturers thoughtfully added a warming tray where you can cook your veggies at a lower temperature while the grill grates do the heavy-duty grilling.
Nevertheless, keep in mind that this is a single burner unit and you cannot create separate grilling zones.
The wide-set legs of this grill bring the center of gravity to a more favorable point, making it more stable.
There is a lid thermometer and that gives you control over the cooking temperature. A removable drip tray collects run-off and prevents a mess.
The smoke hollow tabletop grill is indeed masterfully built by Masterbuilt. This is our Convenience King among the lot. It is best for all sorts of outdoor grilling.
The Weber Q2200, despite being a single burner unit, is quite versatile. It is the keystone of the celebrated Q-series by Weber.
And why not?
It is large enough to cater to half a dozen people simultaneously. Yet it remains a compact tabletop. Its foldable feature makes it easily fit inside your storage area or slide into your car. It suits a small patio as well.
The primary cooking area amounts to 280 square inches. Moreover, the hood is roomy enough to let you grill larger things. A whole chicken, for instance.
The porcelain-coated cast-iron grill grates are ‘put into flames’ by a single burner unit capable of generating 12,000 BTUs. The cast aluminum shell prevents heat from escaping out into the environment, thereby, maximizing the grilling proficiency.
In order to give you more control, this unit serves with a lid-mounted thermometer. This feature is present in several devices on our top list, but just so you know, it’s usually rare in tabletop grills.
Surprises don’t end here. A fitted glass-reinforced table flank this Weber grill on each side, giving you two side tables to keep grilling necessities.
You can conveniently use it as a flat top grill whenever you feel like it. Just add an optional griddle that’s up for sale.
The only aspect it didn’t completely impress us is portability. Standing at a little over 42 pounds, and with a 2-hands carry shape, it is a bit hard to carry around. It does fit into the trunk of any car comfortably though.
This USA made propane powered tabletop comes with a lot to offer. It is great for backyard reunions and patio celebrations.
Camping with it is pretty great too as long as a few extra pounds isn’t a problem for you.
For us, this is the most versatile single burner unit.
The ISUMER Charcoal Grill doesn’t fit the typical description of a tabletop grill. It is larger than its own kind but smaller than the conventional ones.
However, the feature that most intrigues us is its foldability. The entire framework is collapsible when you pack it, making it a convenient portable tabletop grill.
Your friends are gonna watch with awe as you unfold it into a pretty large and neat unit.
The greatest advantage of this acrobatic charcoal BBQ grill is its cooking area. It measures 585 square inches, which is by far, the greatest we have reviewed until now. With this stainless steel charcoal grill, you are in for a full-blown grilling experience.
You get air vents on each side of the grill ensuring a uniform circulation of air inside the charcoal-burner.
This also makes sure that the charcoal burns to its fullest, giving your BBQs the smoky undertone, one of the prime reasons you probably want to go for a charcoal powered unit.
The grill pan is made of refined iron which is a great retainer of heat. There is an ash catcher. So it is easy to clean.
This unit is lightweight, but it does emit a vibe that it is flimsy or not strong enough to last. It is quite affordable.
The ISUMER Charcoal Grill is best for beach parties. You can take off with it, or simply station it in your backyard, it is not going to disappoint.
In the world of Charcoal Tabletop Grills Weber 121020 Go-Anywhere is a celeb. It is equally well-reviewed by users on Amazon as well as reviewers.
So, what’s all the hype about?
Let’s start with how it looks.
If you want heads turned and eyes popped, you have got yourself a match. The Go-Anywhere brings style to your campsite.
The Porcelain Coated iron body gleams with an aristocratic air while the plated steel legs swivel down on your table with ease.
The lid is basic but elegant with the nylon handle on top of it. This handle resists heating up, reducing burn hazards.
The 160 square inches of grill grates are made of plated steel. This is large enough for you to be able to set up two heating zones. You can expect to prepare 8 pieces of chicken at a time.
The body reflects heat back inside and prevents heat loss, maximizing grilling temperatures. Two lower vents and 3 hole vents control airflow and grilling conditions.
This unit does not come with an ash pan though. Even so, rest assured, this is not going to be a problem. Simply turn the grill upside-down before you pack up, the ash will fall down.
Built into a functional appliance and made of supreme quality materials, this is a highly recommended tabletop grill, especially if you love to hit the roads.
The Weber Go-Anywhere is our best portable charcoal grill pick for you.
Coleman Tabletop Grill may not be the best propane tabletop grill but it sure is a smart inclusion to your cooking appliance collection.
This small and handy grill comes at a pleasant price point and offers the taste of both worlds with interchangeable grill-griddle cooktops. Although you will have to purchase the griddle top separately.
Also, it boasts certain attributes that its contenders lack.
Firstly, there is this Perfect Flow Technology. The purpose of this is to maintain a consistent heat over the cooking surface and make sure that a sudden gush of wind doesn’t put the element out.
Then there is the insta-start igniter. The name says it all.
The heating element generates 8500 BTUs over 168 inches of grills. This is sufficient to cater to a duo or a small family on a picnic.
The dripping tray is surprisingly large for a small unit like this. It is easy to remove and clean.
Coleman Propane Tabletop Grill is a smart choice if you want a lightweight, easy to store, carry and maintain tabletop grill. Equipped with some fairly innovative and convenient features, it is bound to give you a good time.
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The Cuisineart Chef’s Style CGG 306, is lightweight but allows sufficient cooking surface. This is not a grill, rather it is a tabletop griddle.
Made of high-grade steel, it has a stainless cooking grate, two burners, a pull-out grease tray, and a secure locking lid.
The cooking space is 276 square inches, good enough to cater to four or more. The ignition is twist start and the burners generate a humungous 20,000 BTUs.
There is a secure locking lid but it is a bit shallow. Grilling something thick could prove to be a problem.
There is an accurate built-in thermometer. As we mentioned earlier, this is an attribute rarely present in tabletops.
Cleaning this tabletop griddle is no-trouble. The efficient grease tray never misses the grease. Setting it up is also undemanding.
Cuisineart CGG-306 looks great. This stainless steel is bound to earn praise from your friends.
Looking for something to help you entertain your family or a small group of friends? Planning a pleasant fishing trip? Look nowhere else.
This flat-top grill by Blackstone is perfect for camping and outdoor cooking.
Take it wherever you fancy, be it camping, fishing, or tailgating. Or simply enjoy the sun and grill away in your outdoor cooking space.
This 22’’ gas tabletop flat top means some serious business.
Once turned on by the Piezo ignition, the two H-style burners generate 24,000 BTUs of heating power. This is distributed over a generous 330 square inches of the griddle. So, no matter how compact this griddle seems, it is capable of entertaining a large gathering.
Moreover, the burners are independently controlled allowing you to utilize separate heat zones. This is griddle-cooking at its best.
An in-built grease catcher makes post-party cleanup easy.
This is the best tabletop griddle. It is portable, powerful, and can cook for a large crowd.
If a flat-top is what you want for your campsite Blackstone Tabletop Grill – 22 Inch Portable Gas Griddle could be your ideal match.
“Your grills, your rules,” said someone wise.
Keep this in mind when you pick up your grill.
The best machine for you is not necessarily the most popular one. Something that is tailored to meet your specific needs should be the ideal one to go for.
Here is a handy guide to help you define what you want for a tabletop grill.
Tabletop grills are mostly either gas-powered or charcoal heated.
A charcoal grill will take more time to heat up and reach cooking temperatures. Charcoal grills are also messier.
Even so, if you are a devotee to the robust smoky flavor of charcoal, a gas grill will never satisfy your cravings. So better not go for a propane-fueled unit. A charcoal grill is generally more affordable as well.
The cleaning issue can be solved by bringing a unit that comes with an ash collector such as the Char-Griller E22424 Table Top Charcoal Grill.
On the other hand, if you just want to taste the meat and not coal fumes, a propane grill is a neat choice. It doesn’t interfere with the taste or flavor profile of your recipes. Cuisinart CGG-306 Chef’s Style Propane Tabletop Grill is a great unit you can check out.
A gas grill heats up fast. It is less messy but generally costs more than charcoal girls.
One problem with gas grills is that you will have to constantly lookout for the status of your fuel tank. Propane run-out is a common reason for failed campsite parties.
In order to determine how large your primary grilling area should be, think of how many people you would usually like to cater to.
While a small and insufficient grilling surface is not what you must be looking for, purchasing a large and power-hungry grill to cook dinner for a duo is not an efficient idea either.
Calculate and map how much you need. An average burger occupies about 20 square inches of grill space. This knowledge comes in handy when you check out the dimensions of your desired unit.
Coleman NXT Lite Tabletop Propane Grill is a great pick if you are looking for a small grill.
Conversely, ISUMER Charcoal Grill Barbecue Portable BBQ is great for gatherings.
Although asking for more than one heat zones is asking too much from a tabletop, some manufacturers actually provide it, and thereby feed our greed for more versatility in even the most compact systems.
Our top pick Giantex Propane Tabletop Gas Grill has independent burners with which you can create separate heat zones for combination cooking.
A secondary warming area is also a welcome feature. The Smoke Hollow Masterbuilt has one.
You can warm veggies while the meat sears.
The grilling surface area isn’t the only thing that matters. The overall bulk of the unit matters too, especially since we are talking about portable table tops here.
A large machine takes up more space. With something like this, easy storage and easy transport seem less likely.
If you want to keep your tabletop grill stationed in your backyard, then a large and heavy grill is great.
On the other hand, if hitting the roads often is what you have in mind, go for a lightweight and compact system like the Weber Go-Anywhere Charcoal Grill.
A grill should be much more than just a cooking appliance if it is deemed the best.
When it comes to Tabletops, these features are a must-have:
We made sure our top picks fulfilled these standards. Make sure your choice does as well.
Here are the answers to questions we get asked the most about Tabletop grills.
Tabletop grills are designed in such a way that the grilling surface lies high above the table. Therefore, putting them on surfaces such as wood and aluminum is fine.
However, we suggest not to place them on a plastic table as it may melt.
Charcoal grills should not be meant for small apartment balconies as a fly-away spark can start a fire.
However, a tabletop charcoal grill is safe enough for your patio once you abide by the rules of safe grilling.
You can use a grill mat on a wooden deck. This not only protects you from rogue sparks but also protects your deck from grease stain.
Another effective way to minimize fire risk is to close all the vents after you are done grilling.
BTU is the short form of the British Thermal Unit. The higher the BTU of your grill, the more powerful it is, meaning your grill will heat up more and faster. However, this also means that it will consume more fuel.
Yes, you should.
After every use, a light clean up is due. The best time to brush it up is when the grill is still warm ( not hot ).
Simply remove food residues stuck on the grill with a wire brush. Empty the drip tray/ ash pan. And you should be covered.
Yes, you can.
While some tabletop grills do not offer this convenience, CGG-180T by Cuisinart does.
“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating” – Anonymous
We don’t know who said this, but he certainly hit the right chords with us. We believe, by this time, you have done all the research necessary.
Ergo, it’s time to stop reading tabletop grill reviews and start digging in.
There are a few extra steps in the middle though. Take your pick, order it on Amazon, and once the best tabletop grill arrives at your doorstep, keep calm and grill!
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