According to the NPD Kitchen Audit, US BBQ grill sales grew by 14% during 2021 to a value of $6.1 billion in sales.

Are you among those who want to join the trend toward outdoor cooking this year? You’ll find plenty of options to choose from, including built-in grills, electric grills, charcoal grills, gas grills, smokers, and kamado types of grills.

A charcoal or gas grill is often the most popular option for homeowners, but how do you know how to choose the right grill for your needs?

Keep reading for a comparison of your charcoal grill vs gas grill options.

Pros and Cons of a Charcoal Grill

There’s no denying that a charcoal grill provides that desirable smoky flavor that sets grilled food apart.

These grills reach a higher cooking temperature than gas grills do, so it’s easier to achieve a sear on meat. Most charcoal grills can reach upt o 700 °F, and the more expensive ones get even hotter.

When you cook food at these high temperatures, drippings from the food fall onto the hot coals and turn to steam. This steam forces the flavors right back into the food while it’s cooking.

On the downside, it takes longer for these grills to reach this optimum temperature. So you can wait around for as long as twenty minutes while it fires up.

They’re also a lot trickier to light, and it will take some practice to keep an even cooking temperature going throughout your meal preparations.

Charcoal grills are among the cheapest grills available. You can pick up a basic one for as little as $25.

Naturally higher priced grills come with more space, accessories, and adjustability for precise cooking.

Although the grills are affordable, charcoal is one of the more expensive and shortest-lasting fuels. A 20-pound bag of charcoal might only last you three cooking sessions whereas a 20-pound gas cylinder lasts for over a month.

Finally, cleaning your charcoal grill is a messy and time-consuming affair and you must wait for the coals to cool down completely before you dispose of them. You’ll only need to replace the grates about once a year, though.

Pros and Cons of a Gas Grill

Gas grills stand out for convenience and temperature control. You can start them up with a turn of a dial and they go straight to the desired temperature in seconds.

You just as easily adjust the temperature instantly, so you can flip between low heat for cooking bone-in chicken, to the higher heat needed for cooking steak almost instantly. You needn’t fiddle with burning, hot coals in the process either.

They can’t reach the high temperatures to sear steaks effectively, but they’re a great option for many other dishes.

Gas grills offer supreme versatility. Let’s face it, a rich smokiness isn’t a desired trait for every dish.

With a gas grill, you can cook delicate fruit, vegetables, and fish without overpowering the taste with a smokey flavor.

When you want that classic BBQ taste, adding a smoke box to your grill will do the trick.

With gas grills, the simple operation doesn’t always go hand in hand with quick assembly times. Some of the more advanced models are a little challenging to set up before you get grilling.

A leaking propane tank is extremely dangerous and can start a house fire. Always keep your gas grill at least ten feet from your home and make sure your tank is in good condition, from a Thunderbird aluminum gas cylinders manufacturer and attached firmly to the relevant coupling.

It’s important to keep the grill free of flammable grease, too. A flare-up can escalate out of control, especially if you panic.

You should never throw water on a gas flame, it will burn more fiercely. Turning off the gas will put the flames out quickly.

Gas grills require more maintenance than charcoal grills. You must check the fuel lines and gas connections regularly to ensure safe operation.

You’ll also need to replace the flavor briquettes often and it’s difficult to check gas levels when needed. it’s a pain swapping out gas bottles every so often, too.

It’s vital to keep your drip tray, igniter collector box, and burner clean and you’ll need to replace the ignition every so often. It’s easy to keep your gas grill clean. You simply remove the grates and clean them in your kitchen sink.

Although you can buy travel-size gas grills, most of them are heavy and cumbersome to move around. So, they’re not a good option if you enjoy picnics away from home.

You can take a compact charcoal grill almost anywhere.

Finally, gas grills come with a much higher price tag than charcoal grills and the more sophisticated ones can cost several hundred dollars. At the very least, you need a gas grill with two burners for efficient grilling.

Are you still undecided between these two popular types of outdoor grills? Check out Elite Patio Direct, BBQ Guys, Backyard BBQ Store, and other outdoor living websites for more options and advice.

Making the Most of Your Charcoal or Gas Grill

Choosing between a charcoal or gas grill is largely a matter of taste. Your preference also depends entirely on your cooking style, budget, and abilities.

Either one is bound to provide you with hours of enjoyment in the company of family and friends, especially once you’ve mastered your grilling technique.

Are you keen to discover more lifestyle tips? Browse our blog for interesting articles to help you get the most out of daily life.

By Manali