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Best Portable Grills 2021

To see our newest recommendations, please see our best grills of 2023.

Expert Picks for the Best Portable Grills of the Year

Whether you spend your summers hiking through the backwoods or cheering on your team at the big game, one thing is certain: when the temperatures rise and the snow melts, it's time to pull out the grill. Prepare your spatulas, your spice rubs, your favorite cuts of meat and your bags of buns. And even if you love flipping burgers at home with a standard outdoor barbecue, some situations mean you need to take your grilling game on the go.
Here, our BBQ specialists pull some of their picks for the best portable grills of 2021. Opt for one of these propane- or electric-fueled cookers to bring the party anywhere you go—whether that's the beach, the park, or the outdoor ice rink in December.

Best Portable-to-Permanent Grills

Weber Q 1200 Black Portable Liquid Propane Gas Grill - 51010001

Weber Q 1200 Black Portable Liquid Propane Gas Grill - 51010001
A movable barbecue should be designed for multifunctionality first, and the Weber Q1200 beats out all competitors when it comes to adaptability. With fold-out side wings that are great for holding small spatulas, tongs, salt, and pepper, this propane cooker is designed for ease of use. And with 189 square inches of cooking space, there's plenty of room to smoke your favorite sausages and veggies for the whole family. If you're feeding a larger group, you may want to upgrade to the larger Q 2000 for an additional 100 square inches of cooking space.
What makes the Weber Q 1200 one of the best portable grills of 2021 is the easy-to-use wheeled stand, sold separately. The stand can turn this portable barbecue into a permanent solution for homes with smaller patios and little backyard space. Pull out your Q 1200 just before dinnertime to fry up some eats, then everything folds away for easy storage afterward. This version can take the place of a permanent BBQ for the moderate griller. And when it is time to hit the road, the stand and cooker are both easy to load into the back of a car or pickup truck.

Best Electric Mobile BBQ

Coyote Stainless Steel Portable Electric Grill - C1EL120SM

Coyote Stainless Steel Portable Electric Grill - C1EL120SM
Most grillers have a tendency to think of barbecues as appliances outside the realm of style. Instead, they focus on usability and function. But with a stunning stainless steel exterior and stylish double-burner controls, the Coyote model challenges all preconceived notions of what grilling should look like. And with no spot to screw in a can of propane, this shining device is an all-electric machine.
While some grillmasters might immediately discount any barbecue without wood, charcoal, or gas, it'd be wise to give this Coyote a chance. Beneath the 156-inch cooking area are briquettes that generate radiant heat (up to 550 degrees of it) perfect for getting that ideal sear on chicken, steaks, and more. This flavorizer brings some of that sought-after smokiness to this electric grill. And with no flames or ash, this machine can go all kinds of places a traditional one can't, like on boats and into homes.

Best Precision Portable Grill

Coyote Stainless Steel Portable Liquid Propane Gas Grill - C1PORTLP

Coyote Stainless Steel Portable Liquid Propane Gas Grill - C1PORTLP
Like its electric brother above, this Coyote brings style back outdoors, making it one of the smartest looking devices you could have on your patio, apartment balcony, or outdoor kitchen. And this one comes ready for propane gas fuel, allowing you to reach even higher temperatures up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit. That's all thanks to 20,000 BTU's of cooking power—that's nearly double what you'll get from a high-powered burner on an average range.
In addition to gas fuel and high heat, this Coyote is built with a ceramic heat control grid to help disperse heat evenly across the griddle. That means no matter where your burger is on the grill, it will be cooked precisely, evenly, and all the way through (unless you like yours extra-rare). And with an exterior thermometer to measure inside temperatures, you'll know exactly when it's time to throw your meats on the fire.

Best Mobile BBQs For Camping

Weber 14.5" Go Anywhere Portable Black Gas Grill - 1141001

Weber 14.5 inch Go Anywhere Portable Black Gas Grill - 1141001
A very different beast from Coyote's 318 marine grade stainless steel, The Weber Go Anywhere grill is made for, well, going anywhere and everywhere. Weighing in at 14 pounds and standing just 14.5 inches tall, this machine is small but mighty, and designed for backwoods camping cooking. Thanks to push-button ignition and liquid propane fuel, all you need to use this one is a surface to put it on (like a picnic table).
With a porcelain-enamel lid and shining black body, this machine probably looks a lot like grills you've brought camping twenty or thirty years ago. But within this barbecue lies even more functionality than its forefathers. This porcelain-enameled cooking grate ensures even cooking across the entire surface, meaning that no matter how far your hot dog is from the center of the burner, it'll be just as charred as the rest of them. Plus, with a tall profile and easy-to lift lid, it's a simple task to clean, cook, and transport this portable camping grill. Whether you're enjoying a meal in the local forest preserve or striking out on a multi-day hike, don't forget to bring the rest of your camping essentials like the coolers and outdoor blankets.

Best Portable Grills for Tailgaters

Bo Jackson Signature Portable Grill By Coyote Stainless Steel - C1PORTLPBO

Bo Jackson Signature Portable Grill By Coyote Stainless Steel - C1PORTLPBO
No matter what team you root for, we all know a great player when we see one. And Bo Jackson is one of those amazing athletes with a career that spans multiple teams (and multiple sports). The only athlete to be named an All-Star in both baseball and football, Bo played for teams like the Los Angeles Raiders and the Chicago White Sox. Now a resident of Chicagoland, Jackson graces the gridiron in a new way; with his signature pressed into this Coyote's griddle.
Bring your next tailgate to a new level with burgers, sausages, and veggies seared with the All-Star's signature. And with 200 square inches of cooking surface, you'll be able to cook enough for your entire caravan of tailgaters. The 316 marine-grade stainless steel grill comes equipped with Coyote's other signature technology, like an easily removable drip pan, cool-touch handle, and 20,000 BTU burner. When it's time to go watch the game, close the lid and pack your gear away before heading off to cheer for your team.

What To Know Before You Buy

Before you pick out the device you think is best for your home and lifestyle, make sure you consider some of the important numbers and features you'd want in your ideal device. Make sure you're taking into account things like:
  • Size: Consider how big you'd want your ideal grill to be. If you're constricted by little space or love to cook for just a few people, you might want to keep your barbecue small. But if you like barbecuing for backyard parties and big tailgates, you'll want a grilling surface with at least 180-200 square inches of cooking surface.
  • Style: How important is a contemporary look? If you love coordinating the style of your outdoor kitchen, pairing your design with the stainless steel of a Coyote grill might be the best option for your lifestyle. If you prefer the color black and easy portability, opt for one of the Weber models suggested above.
  • Power and Fuel: For some, the biggest question when it comes to these backyard cookers is "what powers it?". And while liquid propane models have been popular for decades, the electric grill is making a strong comeback. These electric cookers can be plugged in nearly anywhere and can be safe to use indoors. And while liquid propane grills can become over 200 degrees hotter, what happens when you run out of fuel in the middle of grilling? Consider the benefits and disadvantages of each power source.
  • Where You're Going: These are movable devices, but they can't all go everywhere. Gas machines are only allowed in certain places, while electric grills have to be plugged in to work. If you're hoping to take your grill to specific spots like your favorite camping ground or out on a boat, make sure it's safe to do so before purchasing one.

The Best Portable Grills of 2021: Serving Up Service

If you've done all your homework and still aren't sure what you're looking for in a mobile BBQ, check out this guide to grilling for expert help. There, the BBQ specialists at Abt break down the differences between fuels, types of products, and what to know when shopping. If you're in the market for more personalized advice give us a call at 800-860-3577. Our specialists make it their mission to find the product that's best for you and your club of tailgaters, campers, char-broiled food lovers, and kebab-fanatics.

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Delivery was great. Communication was excellent and the driver called 10 minutes before arrival.
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May 11, 2023