Hey! This site is reader-supported and we earn commissions if you purchase products from retailers after clicking on a link from our site.
Perhaps you enjoy grilling and smoking in your yard with a wood pellet grill, but what if you also like camping? Don’t despair, there are plenty of portable pellet grills (even the pellet grills for smoking) out there and you don’t even have to worry about an electricity supply because wood pellet grills will work equally as well on a power inverter connected to a car battery.
In this article we shall look at the advantages and disadvantages of wood pellet grills and give you our top picks.
This grill is just the right size for you to take camping or tailgating. It is made from strong and durable porcelain. The grill grate is also made from porcelain and there is a cast iron griddle so you can easily cook fish and vegetables.
It has a digital arc controller system which gives you precise temperatures. It will go up to 400F so you can sear meat as well as smoke at a lower temperature. There is a ‘keep warm’ mode so you can keep food warm for second helpings.
Additional benefits include a meat probe so you can keep an eye on the temperature of your meat, a timer, and lid latches so you can retain heat. When you have finished cooking your food, the grill will shut down and save all unused pellets for next time.
This grill is ideal for camping or tail gaiting and fits easily into the trunk of your car. It has folding legs which double as handles. It comes with a water-resistant cover and a thermal blanket to put over your firebox in the winter. This reduces fuel consumption. It runs on 12V or 120AC so it can be used both at home and while out.
If you are at home, you can control the grill using your home Wi-Fi system. However, it does have manual controls as well.
It is fitted with Sense-Mate which is a thermal sensor. It will continually tell you the temperature inside the grill. Other benefits include a peaked lid for cooking ribs, a meat probe, and utensil hooks.
This grill has wheels so can easily be moved around. It is a good size; 501 square inches over 2 shelves. It has a Slide and Grease feature which means that you can both grill and smoke on this unit.
It has an electric automatic ignitor and digital controls. There is a dual LED temperature readout so that you can check on both the temperature of your meat and also of the internal temperature. It has 2 slots for temperature probes.
The grates are made from stainless steel, so they are strong and durable and also easy to clean.
Other benefits include a 10-pound hopper capacity, an automatic auger, and an ash cleanout system.
This is a lighter model than the other Traeger we have talked about, but it still has 184 square inches of cooking space. You can fit 6 burgers, 10 hot dogs, 6 chicken breasts, or 100 asparagus spears. You can easily feed your family from this grill.
It has a porcelain-coated grill grate which is durable and also easy to clean. In addition, it has a digital controller with which you can set the temperature in 25F increments. It heats up very quickly, so you won’t be hanging about waiting for your dinner for long.
Extra benefits include a built-in meat probe so you can check on the temperature without opening the lid. The lid has latches so you can be assured that heat won’t escape.
This grill is just 20′ in height and has foldable legs so it can easily be taken with you when you go tailgating or camping. Of course, you can just as easily use it at home in your back yard.
It has Traeger’s digital arc controller which means that you can set the temperature of the unit at 5-degree increments so you will be getting a precise temperature. An advantage is that it reaches temperature very quickly, so you won’t be hanging around waiting for your food. It also has a ‘keep warm’ mode and if you don’t want all your food in one go, it will still remain warm.
The unit is versatile. Not only will it grill and smoke, but it will barbecue, braise, roast, and bake.
NEVER USE GAS OR CHARCOAL AGAIN: Traeger created the original wood-pellet grill as the ultimate way to achieve wood-fired taste. The Tailgater is our most capable of our portable wood pellet grills
PRECISION TEMPERATURE CONTROL: The Digital Arc Controller maintains a plus/minus 15 degree F temperature control to guarantee precision grilling, and a temperature range of 180-450 Fahrenheit
Take your grill and your wood-fired BBQ wherever you go. Whether it’s your truck tailgate, the parking lot, out at the campsite or anywhere your travels take you, you’ll never have to leave your smoke behind
EZ fold legs, a grill capacity of 300 sq inches, and capacity for 12 burgers, 3 racks of ribs or 2 whole chickens
6-in-1 versatility to grill, smoke, braise, roast, bake, or BBQ
This grill has lockable folding legs so you can transport it anywhere. It also has wheels so it is easy to move.
The cooking chamber and the lid are made from durable stainless steel so you can expect it to last a while. You also won’t have bits flaking off. The handles are also made of stainless steel.
This grill will work either manually or through your Wi-Fi. It is very versatile as not only can you grill, but you can sear, bake, roast and smoke. You can put in a turkey to roast or even a cake to bake.
There are 2 built-in meat probes which means that you don’t have to open the lid to check on the temperature of your food. The temperature range is 200F – 500F and you can set it at 5F increments. Smoke a rack of ribs on a low temperature or sear your steaks on high. If you want to switch off the heat, a push of a button will put the grill into ‘cool mode’.
It is a great bargain as included in the package are 80 pounds of wood pellets, a grill cover, and 2 mesh cooking mats.
No products found.
340 square inches of cooking space
Made from durable stainless steel
Can operate it through your cell phone
2 built-in meat probes
A couple of customers complained that the grill had trouble keeping to the set temperature
No products found.
Best Portable Pellet Grill – Buyers Guide
What are Wood Pellet Grills?
Wood pellets are made from compressed hardwood sawdust and are about an inch long and ¼ inch wide. They are fed into the grill from the wood pellet hopper. Therefore they need to be connected to electricity or to an inverter. The pellets contain no additives apart from vegetable oil which is needed for flavor. Wood pellets burn cleanly and leave very little ash, so you won’t be constantly cleaning up.
When you plug the grill in, a rotating auger delivers the pellets to the fire pot which has an ignitor rod. It is the rod that lights the pellets. Heat and smoke are produced by a blower fan and metal plates under the grate.
Why Choose a Pellet Grill?
With a pellet grill you can vary the flavor of your meat. There are many different types of wood out there, including mesquite, hickory, cherry, apple, and pecan. You can choose your favorite or mix and match the different flavors.
You can set the temperature of your wood pellet grill anywhere between 180F and 500F. This means that not only can you grill, but you can also smoke, sear, roast, and even bake. There’s no point in buying a separate smoker and a grill when you can get both in one package.
Easy to Use
It is so easy to use a wood pellet grill. You don’t have to tend it like you have to do with a charcoal grill. All you do is set the temperature and press the ‘go’ button. You won’t have to worry about over smoking your food as they keep the temperature within 10F either way.
Initially they may seem expensive, but you should remember that they offer you the best of both worlds and a little more. Whether you want to smoke or grill, you can do it on a wood pellet grill. They are also fuel-efficient in comparison to gas, electric, or charcoal grills.
Pros and Cons of Wood Pellet Grills
Pellet grills heat up very quickly as do gas grills, but they are much quicker than charcoal grills. They reach temperature in around 10 -15 minutes.
The way they are designed means that there won’t be flare-ups.
A wood pellet grill works like a convection oven so you can put in as much food as you want without any of it being cooked unevenly.
Many wood pellet grills allow you to put in temperatures with just 5F increments. This means that you have greater control over the temperature.
There is a thermostat in the cooking chamber which regulates pellet delivery.
Pellets come in different flavors so you can have a different taste each time you cook.
The smoke flavor is subtle, not in your face as you get with a wood or charcoal grill.
Some companies offer an accessory so that you can cold smoke food like fish and cheese.
You don’t get sear or grill marks with a pellet grill as you do with charcoal.
They are quite expensive to buy initially.
Any grill which works with electricity or an inverter has parts that can break down.
Wood pellets can disintegrate if they are exposed to moisture. If you live in a humid climate, store them in containers and indoors.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Hopefully, we have told you all you need to know about pellet grills, but if you have any questions, feel free to contact us. We have tried to answer a couple of the more common questions here.
How much fuel does a pellet grill use?
If it’s not windy or cold, a pellet grill will use around ½ pound of wood pellets when smoking and 2 ½ pounds when grilling on high.
At what temperatures do you get the most smoke?
The higher the temperature, the less smoke you will have so if you want to smoke your meat, keep the temperature below 250F.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading about portable pellet grills and have found one to suit from our choices (we made a choice of pellet grills under $500 also). We stand by our top pick of the Traeger Grills Ranger Grill. It does an excellent job of maintaining the temperature whether you want it high or low for either grilling or smoking. The hopper holds 8 pounds of pellets so you will have a good five hours of cooking time without having to refill. The grill grate is porcelain and so is strong and durable. It is easily transported as it doesn’t have legs. All you have to do is pack it up into the trunk of your car. We hope that you have a great summer cooking out on the road