Best Pellet Smokers And Grills Reviews 2019

Seasoned vegetables grilled alongside tenderly-smoked salmon fillet, or a juicy, marinated 12 inch steak sizzling over a wood-burning fire on a hot day - these are memories, not just meals! A quality pellet smoker or grill will up your culinary game, but don’t get fooled by clever marketing phrases and gimmicks!

Even with AI-driven search results and mobile capabilities, finding the best pellet smokers is a time consuming job. There are literally thousands of reviews and each brand has several different models. Trying to compare all their different features is a nightmare!

Lucky for you, this guide is full of the best pellet smokers and grills reviews. Find everything you need to compare brands, features, pros and cons for both top brands and obscure hidden gems alike!

Let’s dive in! But first, check out our all-round top pick for this year!

All-Round Top Pick for Best pellet smoker

editors pick
Traeger TFB42LZBC Grills Lil Tex Elite 22 Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker

Traeger Lil’ Tex Elite 22 TFB42LZBC

Pros:

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    Manufactured by the 'Original' pellet smoker company
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    Easy to use ash clean out system
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    6-in-1 cooking function making it super versatile
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    Uses 100% natural wood pellets for improved flavor

Cons:

  • More expensive than comparable brands with similar number of features
  • Grill accessories are not included
  • 418 square inches of cooking space is not very spacious

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Last Updated: September 20, 2019

By William Clay: This article has been updated to reflect the most accurate information regarding pellet smokers and grills available for those who are interested in making a perfectly smoked meat. The best 11 available have changed, and information has been added to assist individuals in finding the best grills currently available on the market. The FAQ has also been updated.

Best Pellet Smokers And Grills Reviews Of 2019

1. Traeger Lil’ Tex Elite 22 - top pick overall

Runner-up-pick-pellet-smoker

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 22 x 42 x 49 inches
  • Weight: 98 pounds
  • 418 Square inch cooking area (serves single family of 4 - 5)
  • High grade Steel 
  • Porcelain coated cooking racks
  • Digital Elite Controller for precision cooking [1
  • 6 versatile grilling functions
Product Overview : Why Is Traeger The Top Pellet Smoker Pick?

Traeger is the original pellet smoker company, and one of the top manufacturers of smokers and grills globally. From the price right down to the smallest electrical components, there’s nothing cheap about a Traeger.

Easy to use, versatile, and built for durability, the Traeger Lil’ Tex Elite 22 is the best pellet smoker option for value and performance. Although slightly more costly than comparable brands, the Traeger TFB Tex Elite 22 always delivers an amazing rich BBQ flavour and fragrance. 

One of the best features of The Traeger Lil Tex Elite is the impressive "6 in 1" cooking function. With just the turn of a knob you can braise, grill, smoke, roast and BBQ all kinds of delicious BBQ meals.

The Traeger Lil Tex Elite also comes with durable, porcelain-covered racks that you would usually find on more expensive pellet grills. For precision temperature control, the smoker uses a top digital controller which means you can relax safe in the knowledge that your food will come out perfect every time.

With Over 390 positive reviews on Amazon, the Traeger Lil Tex Elite is a sure investment that will make you the envy of all your grilling friends! Sounds interesting? Why not read the full review of the Traeger Lil Tex Elite for more details?

Top Features You’ll Love
  • Ease of Use: Porcelain cooking grates for easy cleaning, a convenient ash-removal system, and state of the art digital controller for precision cooking.
  • Durable Metal Construction: From the screws right down to the grease bucket and handles, the Traeger is constructed from high-grade steel parts. The powder coated cooking chamber, exterior, and lid, protects your Trager pellet smoker against heat and weather conditions for years to come.
  • Versatile Grilling Functions: Grill, smoke, braise, roast, bake or barbecue, the Traeger Lil Tex Elite can do it all!
  • Large Hopper Capacity: 18 pound hopper supplies enough wood pellets for up to 7 hours of grilling or 36 hours of smoking time.

    Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers
  • Limited Cooking Area: Considering the price, 418 square inches of cooking surface is quite small but still sufficient for a small family.
  • No Accessories: The Traeger doesn’t come with any accessories such as a cover.
  • Grease Management System needs improvement: Grease can easily slip out of the bucket, which hangs on the exterior. The grease bucket’s positioning isn’t ideal and could cause frustration if you’re grilling in a crowded space with lots of foot traffic. Even a strong wind can cause the grease bucket to tip and spill.

Pros:

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    Easy to use ash clean out system
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    18 lb hopper capacity
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    Has a 6-in-1 cooking function making it super versatile
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    Holds consistent temperature even in cold weather

Cons:

  • More expensive than other pellet smokers and grills with a similar number of features
  • Only 418 square inches of cooking space is small for the price
  • Doesn't come with accessories
  • Grease catcher is awkward

Z grills wood pellet grill

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 51.2 x 22.5 x 48.4 inches 
  • Weight: 112 pounds
  • 513 Square inch cooking rack
  • 187 Square inch warming rack
  • Temperature Range:180ºF to 450ºF
  • 20lb Capacity Wood Pellet Hopper
  • SMART Digital Controller
  • Versatile 7-1 Grilling Functions

Product Overview

If you're looking for a truly 'set and forget' grilling experience combined with amazing 7-in-1 cooking features then the Z Grill is the perfect unit. Versatile, large and high performing, this is definitely one of the pellet grills to beat in terms of value. Hands down, Z Grill’s Wood Pellet Grill this is one of the most hassle-free pellet grills on the market which is why it deserves to be among the top 10 picks.

While not as durable as theTraeger Lil Tex Elite, it has a more spacious cooking surface area of 513 square inches plus a second rack if you need it. The Z Grill’s top quality digital controller and 'Smart Smoke Technology' quickly heats up to between 160 and 460 degrees fahrenheit, while ensuring a fairly consistent temperature to within +/- 20 degrees.

Fueled by 100% natural wood pellets, the Z Grill is highly efficient as well. Fill the 20lb hopper, set your temperature, and the SMART controller monitors the internal temperature to ensure the appropriate level of fuel at all times. Your Z Grill pellet grill will literally cook your food itself! 

One drawback, however, is that the Z Grill Wood Pellet grill has no auto cleanup system. Still, the auto shut-off feature go a long way to preventing burnt food, overcooking and flare-ups. 

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Easy Assembly: Parts and instructions are easy to follow
  • Set It And Forget It: SMART Digital Controller monitors and adjusts internal temperature to prevent overcooked or undercooked meat [2].
  • Spacious Cooking Area: 700 square inches total cooking surface can serve 6 - 8 guests comfortably or smoke 2 large turkeys at the same time.
  • 7-in-1 Cooking Versatility: Offers all the grilling, smoking and baking options of an outdoor woodfire stove 
  • Large Capacity Hopper: 20 pound hopper can fuel up to 15 hours of smoking 
  • Patio Cover: Included with the Z Grill to protect against weather 
  • Storage Cart: Keeps grilling utensils, cover and other accessories conveniently stored
  • Wheels: 4 castor wheels for ease of transport, with locking brakes on 2 of the wheels

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Ash Clean Out System: Ash cleaning does require some work, best done with a vacuum after every 4 bags of pellets

Pros:

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    'Smart Smoke' technology means Set and Forget
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    Spacious 513 square inches of cooking space
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    Easy to move with built-in wheels
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    7-in-1 cooking facilities making it ultra versatile
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    Patio cover included

Cons:

  • Has no easy ash clean out system

3. Camp Chef SmokePro DLX PG24 - Best pellet grill for beginners

camp chef pg24

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 40.5 x 25 x 22 inches
  • Weight: 140 pounds
  • 429 Square inch cooking rack  
  • 141 Square inch warming rack
  • Cooking Temperature: 160 - 500 degrees Fahrenheit 
  • 25,000 BTU’s per hour heat output
  • 1 x Meat Temperature Probe
  • Patented Ash clean-out system
  • Pellet Drain Chute

Product Overview:

New to the smoking world? Camp Chef pellet grills are known for being super easy to maintain and for their quality construction. They make pellet smokers and grills for the average outdoor grilling enthusiast on a budget who still wants to feel and grill like a pro!

The Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet SmokerPro isn’t appealing to look at, granted, but don’t let looks fool you. Camp Chef’s pellet design is practical, functional, and long-lasting. Thanks to its set-it-and-forget-it features, your brisket will never come out overcooked again!

Durable Construction And Ample Space

Right out of the box you can tell the Camp Chef SmokePro DLX  made with sturdy, high-grade metal components both inside and out. 570 square inches of cooking area is large enough to serve 5 - 6 people comfortably [3]. 

SMART Controller

The DLX controller unit utilizes SMART technology to regulate the internal temperature and fuel consumption as needed. Load the hopper, set your desired temperature and the SmokePro’s digital controller does the rest [4]!

Can the SmokePro PG24 hold a consistent temperature well?

Thanks to its cooking chamber design, and pellet efficiency, the SmokePro PG24 Deluxe can easily maintain smoking temperatures (165F - 225F) over several hours [5]. The Camp Chef PG24 can generate 25,000 BTU’s per hour, and  temperatures as high as 500 degrees fahrenheit, making it quite versatile. 

Smoking, grilling, baking, braising, roasting, or barbecuing, the Camp Chef SmokePro can do it all - except searing. There is, however, a Camp Chef SmokePro sear box you can attach to the pellet smoker for searing steaks, burgers and other types of dark meat. 

Cleaning And Maintenance

Cooking with the Camp Chef SmokePro is fun but cleaning it is also a breeze. Other brands like the Traeger require you to remove the internal components and clean out ash with a handheld vacuum. Not Camp Chef pellet smokers! Thanks to an innovative trap door for burn pot cleansing, you simply pull a lever to release the ash into the dump bucket located directly underneath. 

There’s also a convenient drain chute for removing pellets from the hopper. You won’t have to leave unused pellets in the hopper anymore!

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Ease of Maintenance: Ash clean out system captures and removes ash in minutes with less hassle and fuss than other brands of pellet smokers
  • Great Accessories: Meat temperature probe and a cover are included 
  • Pellet Removal: Pellet Drain chute allows for easy removal of unused pellets from the auger
  • Side Tray: Provides additional cooking space

Drawbacks But Not Deal Breakers

  • Digital Temperature Control: May experience significant temperature variance if the internal thermometer is faulty or becomes damaged

Pros:

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    SMART Digital controller for precision grilling and smoking
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    Large 570 square inch cooking area
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    Easy to clean ash-dump system
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    Super easy assembly - there's even a video on the Camp Chef website
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    Drain chute for pellets

Cons:

  • Auger motor can get damaged
  • Internal temperature monitor can be faulty, causing significant temperature variance

4. GREEN MOUNTAIN DAVY CROCKETT WOOD PELLET GRILL - Best wi-fi portable pellet grill

green mountain grill

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 29.5 x 20 x 14.5 inches
  • Weight: 68 pounds
  • Cooking Area: 219 square inches
  • 110V or 12V with adaptors for 3 Power Options
  • Green Mountain Grills Wifi App (Android/iPhone compatible)
  • Temperature Range:150-550 degrees Fahrenheit
  • High-grade steel construction
  • Covered Smokestack
  • Dual handles and foldable legs
  • Sense-mate Thermal Sensor
  • Open Flame Technology for indirect or direct flame cooking

Product Overview:

Taste the frontier and enjoy the ultimate in portable outdoor pellet grilling! Convenience, Wi-fi technology, performance, and portability are features that make the Davy Crockett Wood Pellet Grill by Green Mountain one of the best pellet grills for tailgating you can get at this price point [6].

Great Value, Competitively Priced 

Although the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett pellet grill is less costly than the Traeger Elite, it compares admirably well performance-wise. In many ways it is also an improvement of the Green Mountain Daniel Boone Pellet Grill. Besides the economic price, the addition of the GMG Wi-fi app and a SMART PID controller system gives the Davy Crockett some key advantages over the Daniel Boone pellet grill, and even the Traeger Elite [7]

A User Friendly Wifi Pellet Grill

Wifi isn’t new in the world of pellet smokers and grills, but not all brands include wifi. Green Mountain has come up with a Wifi app that is easy to download and sync automatically to your mobile device (ie tablet, Android, iPhone). As long as you can get a wifi signal, you can remotely operate the Davy Crocket’s digital controller to follow your brisket recipe more precisely.

Sense Mate Thermal Sensor

The Sense-Mate feature is an internal thermal sensor (PT100 Platinum) designed to ensure all your meats are cooked right through [8]. Sense-mate  monitors your temperature and fuel consumption to ensure that the fire in the burn pot doesn’t go out while your smoking or cooking. If the temperature drops, the Wifi app will alert you so you can check on the hopper or adjust as needed.

Open Flame Technology

Switch from burgers to smoked salmon using the direct or indirect flame heating options. 

Using the Green Mountain Open flame technology gives you the option of either direct or indirect heat. Smoking or grilling, this pellet smoker serves up delicious, wood-flavored meat that’s succulent. richly scented and cooked right through [9].

Construction, Grilling Hot Spots, Portability

With its covered smokestack and heavy metal lid, the Green Mountain Davy Crocket wood pellet grill retains heat with minimal heat loss and better consistency than some of the more expensive portable wood pellet grills Users, however, have reported difficulty with hot spots when grilling [10]. While this is a common problem with most pellet smokers, the inclusion of a heat shield helps to distribute heat more effectively when grilling, but isn’t ideal.

Although it doesn’t have wheels for easy transport, foldable legs make the Davy Crocket pellet grill handy for tailgating. Suited for small gatherings or on the road, it weighs less but is still durable metal. Considering the Davy Crocket pellet grill is lower in cost than the top picks, this pellet grill delivers incredibly high value.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Portability: Foldable legs, dual handles and 3 power options for outdoor cooking such as camping or tailgating
  • Wifi Capabilities: Remote monitoring and temperature control using the GMG App
  • Accessories: Convenience tray and utensil hooks 
  • SMART Controller: Sense-mate internal temperature monitor adjusts temperature as needed

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Heat Distribution: Hot spots can occur while grilling, even with the heat shield placed over the fire pot.
  • Hopper Capacity: 9 lb capacity isn’t as large as the top picks and requires reloading more frequently for smoking meat low and slow.
  • Cooking Surface Area: Limited 219 square inches of cooking area is smaller than the top picks from Traeger and Camp Chef, but better for tailgating and camping

Pros:

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    'Sense-Mate' constantly monitors internal temperature
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    Portable design with foldable legs
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    Wifi capability for hands-free use and added convenience

Cons:

  • Compared to some grills the cooking area is smaller
  • 9lb hopper is smaller wood pellet capacity than comparable pellet grills
  • Inconsistent heat distribution even with the heat shield

How To Assemble Your Green Mountain Davy Crockett Wood Pellet Grill


5. LOUISIANA GRILLS LG900 WOOD PELLET GRILL - best large pellet smoker under $1000

Louisiana Grills 60900-LG900 LG 900 Pellet Grill, 913 Square Inch

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 46.6 x 43.7 x 23.7 inches
  • Weight: 161 pounds
  • 913 Square inches total Cooking Surface (633 Main 280 Upper)
  • Temperature Range: 170°F - 600°F
  • 14 pound Hopper Capacity
  • G3 Digital Controller
  • Programmable Internal Meat Probe
  • Flame Broiler for direct heat grilling
  • Porcelain Cast Iron Cooking Grids
  • Porcelain Steel Removable Upper Cooking Grid

Product Overview

Want to smoke and grill a variety of dishes on one grill? The Louisiana Grill LG900 is close to commercial-grade quality, with substantial cooking space for those large family gatherings. If you love smoking and grilling for large groups but don’t have the budget for a commercial pellet grill, the LG900 can be a very good option.

A Pellet Grill For Large Gatherings

The LG900 Wood Pellet Grill is currently one of the best large wood pellet grills you can get for the price. Aspiring pitmasters can have hours of grilling fun on the LG900 which is spacious, highly durable, and very well suited for large family gatherings of 10 or more, or up to 46 burgers at once.

Louisiana Grills 2-Tier Cooking And Proprietary Exhaust System

Besides the 900 + square inches of cooking area, the LG900 utilizes a special 2-tier system and proprietary exhaust system that allows for more consistent temperatures. The 14-gauge steel used in its construction can withstand high temperatures, making it great for searing steaks, burgers, bison, or other thick cuts of meat [11].

A handy slide-plate function on the LG900 allows you to easily switch from Flame Broiler to indirect flame cooking. Together, the burner and proprietary exhaust system can generate temperatures as high as 600 degrees fahrenheit, which is 50 -100 degrees higher than the top brands. 

Set It And Forget It? Not Exactly.

While the Louisiana LG900 claims to be a set it and forget it type of pellet grill, users aren’t quite in agreement. External weather conditions can affect the efficiency and BTU output. In cold climates, for instance, heating up the LG900 takes longer than in warm climates. Under windy or cold conditions, the thermal sensor can be unreliable, resulting in fluctuating temperatures throughout the smoking or grilling process.

When reducing the temperature on a juicy steak from 450 - 225 for example, the LG900 has difficulty adjusting. If the fire in the firepot goes out, the LG900 doesn’t have a SMART function that will adjust the fuel supply accordingly. The fire in the burn pot can go out entirely while the internal temperature remains high. As it cools, the auger feeds more pellets into the pot but fails to detect that there is no fire. 

Can the LG900 hold a consistent temperature? 

You can use the meat probe to set the desired temperature for food readiness, and under optimal conditions the LG900 keeps a consistent temperature, but you can’t simply walk away once you set the smoking or cooking temperature. 

The temperature can be adjusted in 5 degree increments, allowing for more precise cooking, but variance can be as high as 25 degrees. The meat probe, however, seems to provide a more accurate reading than the temperature gauge reading on the grill lid.

LG900 Cleaning & Maintenance 

Lastly, cleaning and maintaining the LG900 takes considerable more work than some of the other pellet grills included in this review.  There’s no ash cleanout system, for example, but the grease catcher is located underneath instead of the side. This positioning makes grease removal fairly easy.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Large Cooking Area: 2X more cooking area than the Traeger Elite with removable porcelain-coated racks can accommodate up to 46 beef patties simultaneously
  • Low And Slow: Great for low and slow smoked meat such as brisket, pulled pork, also good for wood-fired baking recipes
  • Internal Meat Probe: Accurate meat thermometer probe included for precision cooking
  • Direct/Indirect Flame Options: Slide tray exposes open flame for grilling and searing, or switch to indirect for smoking large cuts of beef, pork, sausages, big game and poultry (eg turkey, duck)

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Cost: Significantly more expensive than the other top picks but the LG900 is made of 14 gauge steel for durability
  • Digital Control Center: Thermal sensor may not read accurately, resulting in wild temperature swings, faulty programming issues may require new 
  • Exhaust and Fan: Ventilation ducts can be a source of added oxygen, causing temperature flares inside the cooking chamber 
  • Accessories: None included

Pros:

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    900 + square inches of cooking area for large gatherings of 10 or more
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    Durable 14 gauge steel construction
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    Sensitive meat thermometer probe included for testing meat readiness
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    Flame broil or smoking options

Cons:

  • Requires ample space to store adequately
  • Thermometer gauge on lid may not be reliable

6. CAMP CHEF WOODWIND SG PELLET GRILL - best pellet grill for searing

Camp Chef Woodwind Pellet Grill with Sear Box - Smart Smoke Technology - Ash Cleanout System

Key Specs:

  • Weight: 187 pounds
  • 811 Square inch Cooking Area (2 cooking racks)
  • 22 lb Hopper Capacity
  • Temperature Range: 160°F to 500°F
  • Dual Internal Meat Probes
  • SMART Smoke Technology
  • Bottle Opener included

Product Overview

With the Camp Chef Woodwind Pellet Grill you never have to worry about under cooking or overcooking your food.

Set It And Forget It

Thanks to Smart Smoke Technology you can set it, forget it and go take care of something else while the grill does all the work. The digital temperature controls and automatic auger will feed premium hardwood pellets into the grill so the temperature always remains just right without any assistance from you.

While the Camp Chef Woodwind is equipped with an 18 pound hopper capacity, the Woodwind SG offers an even larger 22 pound hopper capacity, giving you an impressive 15 hours of cooking time.  Once it’s loaded, you can walk away knowing your smoked meat will have enough pellets for hours of smoking!

Slide And Grill Technology

The versatility of the Woodwind pellet grill gives you endless cooking possibilities. You can roast, bake, barbecue, smoke and of course grill. You have a huge temperature range of between 160° F up to 500° Fahrenheit, which allows you to cook your food any way you want.

Camp Chef Sear Box

There is also a sear box that can reach up to 900° F so you can sear your meat to perfection. Once you are done grilling your steaks, burgers and chicken you can transfer them to the sear box so they can get the nice and crisp caramelized sear. 

Cooking Area For Up To 50

The Camp Chef Woodwind Pellet Grill has 570 square of cook space so you can quickly and easily prepare food for a family of four or for a party of 50. You could literally feed the whole neighbourhood with this grill if you had to. There’s even a removable upper warming rack that provides you with additional space if you need it.

Camp Chef Woodwind Cleaning And Maintenance

The worst part about using a grill is always the clean up. It usually requires you to pull out a vacuum or broom and get your hands dirty while you are trying to prepare one of your grilling masterpieces.

Luckily the Woodwind SG features the Camp Chef patented ash cleanup system that makes cleaning the grill as easy as pulling a lever. This means you can spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying the food you just prepared. This is an exclusive feature and can’t be found on any other grill.

The Woodwind is a little expensive, but the features are pretty amazing. Overall, this pellet grill is well worth the price and will last you for years.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Slide & Grill Technology: Grill over an open flame or indirect heat with the pull of a knob for a variety of dishes, from burgers to smoked brisket.
  • Camp Chef Sear Box: Attaches easily to the Woodwind SG for searing meat at 900 degrees Fahrenheit. Even top of the line Traeger pellet smokers and grills can’t sear meat like the Woodwind SG!
  • Easy To Clean: Patented ash cleanout system is hassle-free and less labor intensive than other brands of the best pellet smokers and grills

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Heavy: At. 187 pounds, the Woodwind SG is an extremely heavy pellet smoker for the size
  • Build Quality: Compared to a Traeger pellet smoker, Camp Chef pellet grills are noticeably lower in construction quality. A considerable amount of smoke leaks out from the unit, indicating there are gaps in the design that need to be sealed. The gaps can cause wide temperature variances in windy conditions.
  • Price: Considering the flaws in design and construction, the Camp Chef Woodwind SG is costly, but the addition of the sear box certainly helps add greater value.

Pros:

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    Sear Box for truly searing thick cuts of meat
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    Easy ash cleaning and grease removal
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    Slide & Grill Technology for versatile cooking options (direct vs indirect flame)

Cons:

  • Extremely heavy pellet smoker
  • Construction quality needs improvement

7. PIT BOSS 700FB PELLET GRILL, 700 SQ. IN - best pellet grill for smoked meat

pit boss 820 pellet grill

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 24.8 x 22.1 x 43.1 inches
  • Weight: 118 pounds
  • 700 Square inch Cooking Area ( up to 32 beef patties)
  • 2 x Porcelain-coated wire cooking grates
  • Flame Broiler Slide Plate 
  • 18 pound Hopper Capacity

Product Overview:

All of the pellet grills included in this review are a combination of pellet grill and pellet smoker, but not all brands can do both well. Pit Boss, however, has found a way to turn their 700 pellet grill series into an amazing quality smoker. 

One thing that really makes the Pit Boss 700 stand out is its smoking capabilities and real wood flavor that saturates anything you’re cooking on the grill. Whether you want to smoke a big slab of ribs or char broil a steak, with the Pit Boss you win with every meal.

Electric Ignition and Exhaust System For A Clean Burn

To ensure you always maintain a clean burning flame this Pit Boss grill comes with an electric ignition and fan forced air. Once the air has been fan forced into the grill it gets channeled around by the flame broiler.

The exhaust design ensures the air is evenly circulated throughout the entire grill. This process is what allows the grill to achieve uniform heat no matter what grilling method you are using.

Temperature Control

The Pit Boss 700FB digital controller includes a unique feature that gives you more control over the smoking temperature. Pit Boss ‘P’ settings, or pause settings, help generate smoke by altering the pause between pellet cycles. You can adjust the ‘P’ setting to increase or decrease the length of time between pellet cycles.  

Adjusting the P setting allows you to generate smoke more consistently for a balanced, smoky flavor to your meat. Once you set the desired cooking temperature, the auger will automatically feed the wood pellets to the burn pot until the desired temperature is reached. If it overshoots the temperature setting, the auger stops until the temperature cools.

Pit Boss Flame Broiler Feature

The flame broiler is an absolute fan favorite. It allows you to directly or indirectly cook while adding a great deal of flavor back into the foods you are preparing. And don’t worry, this grill will channel all the excess grease so you don’t have to.

Once you’ve finished preparing your food, press the power button and the grill will automatically go through a cool down period before shutting all the way off.

Whether you’re a veteran pitmaster who loves smoking meat or just starting out, the Pit Boss 700FB is the best choice for a wood pellet smoker. As with every Pit Boss, this pellet smoker is built to last and designed to help you get going as quickly as possible. With it you’ll be able to prepare and serve gourmet goodness right from the comfort of your backyard.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Large Capacity Hopper: 18 pound hopper requires loading once for more than 15 hours of cooking time.
  • Smoke Flavor: Generates sufficient smoke using high quality 100% natural wood pellets
  • Flame Broil Slide Plate: Direct and indirect flame grilling options
  • Cooking Area: 2 racks for additional cooking space

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Pellet Auger: Some users have reported a faulty auger motor due to a loose screw. Check the Pit Boss 5 year warranty for parts coverage.

Pros:

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    Uses highly efficient 100% natural wood pellets for cleaner, longer lasting smoke generation
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    Flame broil or smoked meat cooking
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    5 year warranty coverage
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    Large capacity hopper for hours of cooking time

Cons:

  • Can only use Pit Boss branded pellets which can be expensive
  • Faulty auger motor may need replacement or repair

Looking for a quality smoker? The Masterbuilt 20070910 30 inch Smoker offers amazing quality at a great price - you can read the full review here.


Camp Chef PG24STX SmokePro Pellet & Smoker with Digital Controls & Stainless Temp Probe

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 40.8 x 25 x 22 inches
  • Weight: 113 pounds
  • 18 pound Hopper Capacity
  • 429 Square inch Cooking Area
  • 1 x Stainless Steel Meat Probe
  • SmartSmoke Digital Temperature Control
  • Ash Cleanout System

Product Overview

Nothing beats a wood pellet smoker for that marinated, smoke-flavored taste you can only get from a wood-burning fire. The Camp Chef SmokePro series is widely considered an innovative yet economic version of Traeger pellet grills, and the STX is no exception.

The SmokePro STX combines the best of a wood fire stove along with SMART features to ensure your smoked brisket or pork butt is always cooked right, with enough clean burning smoke to add flavor without overpowering your tastebuds. 

With its modest 429 square inches of cooking area, the STX is best suited for serving a small family or gathering of 4 - 6 people. You can still, however smoke a whole chicken or turkey in the cooking chamber comfortably. 

Camp Chef SMARTSmoke Digital Temperature Control 

The SmokePro STX gives you complete control of your smoking process to ensure your meat is tenderly smoked and ready to serve every time it comes out. Use the stainless steel meat probes to set your cooking temperature, and the SmokePro’s SMART controller will do the rest. 

Camp Chef’s SmartSmoke Technology monitors the grill temperature continually, and will automatically adjust pellet fuel levels to achieve the optimum temperature range. Camp Chef premium 100% hardwood pellets are specially designed for the highest efficiency and smoke, but the adjustable chimney stack top gives added power to adjust how much smoke flavor gets into your meat. 

SmokePro STX Cleaning And Maintenance

Clean up with the Smokepro STX can be done in 5 minutes or less. Just pull the cleanout system lever and  the ash dumps neatly into the ash cup for a hassle-free cleanup.

Priced lower than the SmokePro DLX, the Camp Chef PG24 STX doesn’t have all the same bells and whistles but still delivers amazing value. With the Smokepro STX you can smoke, sear, braise, bake and grill all in one smoker. 

Top Features You’ll Love

  • SmartSmoke Technology: Produces amazing clean burning smoke for hours of cooking or smoking. SmartSmoke technology monitors temperature and fuel supply for the highest efficiency and best flavor.
  • Ash Clean Out System: Remove ash simply and quickly with the Camp Chef ash cleanout system.
  • Competitive Low Price: The SmokePro STX is one of the most affordable pellet smokers on the market. It’s very competitively priced compared to other more expensive brands with comparable features

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • No Accessories: Side shelf, warming rack, are not included.
  • Pellet Chute: While the more costly SmokePro DLX has a drain chute for pellets, the SmokePro STX doesn’t. Pellets can also be costly.

Pros:

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    Easy to assemble and use
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    Stainless steel probe
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    Quality hardwood pellets deliver clean burning smoke for hours of cooking and smoky flavor
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    Superior temperature control design and controller

Cons:

  • Modest cooking area is small compared to other top pellet smokers and pellet grills
  • Doesn’t feature the pellet drain chute available on the SmokePro DLX
  • Accessories like a side shelf or warming rack for additional space would be an improvement

9. Z GRILLS WOOD PELLET BBQ GRILL AND SMOKER - best budget pellet grill

Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2019 New Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker, 8 in 1 BBQ Grill Auto Temperature Control, 700 sq inch Cooking Area, Silver Cover Included

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 48.5 x 22.5 x 51.2 inches
  • Weight: 127 pounds
  • 504 Square inch Cooking Area
  • 190 Square inch Warming Rack
  • Temperature Range: 160°F to 450°F
  • 20 pound Hopper Capacity
  • 3yr Warranty

Product Overview

The Z Grills Wood Pellet Grill & Smokers received an upgrade in 2019, and has been rebranded as the new and improved ZPG-7002B 2019 New Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker. Issues with the digital controller led to an upgrade of the digital control board that controls the pellet auger and temperature. 

The new ZPG 7002B Wood Pellet Grill truly is definitely an improvement over the earlier model, and performs admirably well when compared to the top pick in this review, the Traeger Lil Tex Elite.

Easy To Handle

With heavy duty all terrain wheels this grill can easily be navigated in just about any outside situation. It also comes with a rust proof cover to ensure the grill is always protected no matter what the weather looks like.

With a 700 square inch grilling area and 20Ib hopper capacity this wood pellet grill is perfect for cooking for large groups of people. Remove the warming rack, and you’ll have enough cooking area to grill a large 20 pound turkey, for example.

Can the ZPG-7002B 2019 New Model sear thick cuts of meat?

Although it claims to be an 8 in 1 pellet grill, the ZPG 7002B doesn’t do a great job at searing meat the way the Camp Chef STX does, for example. With its 180ºF to 450ºF temperature range, the ZPG-7002B 2019 New Model doesn’t get hot enough to sear a thick 10 pound steak, say, or even some meaty 8 oz burger patties. 

Hopper Capacity And Electric Automated Feeder System

The large 20 pound hopper capacity means you only need to load the ZPG New Model, and walk away. Once you set the temperature on the digital controller, the auto feeder works to maintain a consistent temperature over 20 hours of cooking time per 20 lb pellet bag.

You’ll also appreciate the automated electric pellet feeder system, which supplies fuel to the burn pot only as needed to maintain your desired temperature. 

Digital Controller Issues

One point of concern, however, is the quality of the LED digital temperature controller. Users have reported defective units that required replacement shortly after their purchase, after only a few uses. 

The problem may lie with the P settings that control the pellet cycle. Manufactured in China, Z Grills thankfully offers a fully satisfied or money back guarantee. There is also a 3 year warranty from the manufacturer.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Large 20lb Capacity Hopper: 20 hrs of cooking time for every 20lb bag of pellet means you only need to load the ZPG New Model Wood Pellet Grill once.
  • Z Grills Wood Fire Technology: Electric Automatic Feeder manages pellet supply to maintain optimal cooking temperature is more efficient than charcoal or gas grills.
  • Spacious Cooking Area: 700 square inches is ample room for smoking or grilling large cuts of meat, be it salmon steaks, rib eye, pork butt, 12 pound brisket or a whole turkey.

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Digital Controller: Users have reported defective controllers. Check the Z Grills ZPG 7002B warranty information before you buy [12]. Adjust your P settings to accommodate for cold or windy outdoor conditions.
  • Temperature Range: This pellet grill doesn’t get hot enough to sear thick cuts of meat, but is still great for bbq grilling, smoking, braising, roasting and baking outdoors.
  • Cleaning & Maintenance: You’ll need a handheld vacuum to clean out the ash and get at those unused pellets because there’s no drain chute or other way to get them out from the hopper.

Pros:

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    Improved Automatic Electric Feeder System
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    Locking castor wheels for portability
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    Maintains consistent temperature over 20 hrs of cooking time thanks to large capacity hopper and high efficiency
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    Suitable 700 sq inch cooking area for serving large group 10 or more

Cons:

  • Pellet cleanup and ash cleanout is a cumbersome task
  • Temperature range is not hot enough to sear meat as well as other top pellet grills

10. REC TEC RT 700 - best bundled pellet grill

rec tec wood pellet grill

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 32 x 50 x 54 Square inches
  • 702 Square inch Cooking Area
  • 2 x Stainless Steel Grill Grates (1054 sq inches)
  • 2 x Internal Meat Thermometers
  • Wifi Enabled
  • 40 pound Hopper Capacity
  • Smart Grill Technology Controller
  • 6yr Warranty

Product Overview

Compared to other leading brands, Rec Tec is a late-comer to the outdoor cooking world, but they’re quickly building a reputation for great quality. Neatly bundled with a premium grill cover, 200 lb bag of blended wood pellets, and 2 mesh grill mats, the RT-700 is a better deal than the Traeger Elite, and one of the best pellet grills for serving large groups.

Large Capacity Grilling Or Smoking

How large is the RT-700? There are larger pellet grills, but 700 square inches of cooking area is spacious enough to grill or smoke 2 large turkeys, a 12 pound brisket, or enough burgers for 50 people. 

With its 40 pound hopper, the Rec Tec RT 700 holds 2x the capacity of most other pellet grills. Although blended wood pellets are not as efficient or clean-burning as natural hardwood, they are still more efficient than gas or charcoal [13]. Still, once you fill the hopper, you’ll have enough for more than 14 hours of continual, billowing smoke.

The RT-700 cooking chamber is constructed entirely of stainless steel for durability. The legs, handles, grill lid, and other components are all high-grade metals, ensuring excellent build quality. 

Precision Temperature Control

Using a PID controller, the RT 700 provides a temperature range of 200ºF to 500ºF that can be adjusted in 5º increments. In cold or hot weather, the temperature variance is only +/- 1 degree, which is exceptional for a pellet grill.

Superior Temperature Control

Monitor the temperature, adjust, shutdown or turn on your RT-700 right from your phone and enjoy a hands-free grilling experience. Rec Tec really knows how to integrate Wifi technology in a way that works. Dual meat probes allow you to monitor 2 dishes simultaneously via the Wifi app, Wi-Pellet,  which is available through the App Store or Google Play. Once downloaded and synced to your phone, the Wi-Pellet app lets you fully operate the RT-700 remotely. 

RT 700 Cleaning And Maintenance

Undoubtedly, the RT-700 is a beast of a pellet grill that performs as well as or better than pellet grills for the same price. Alas, cleaning and maintenance, however, are necessary tasks but the Rec Tec design does little to make your job easier. Other than a very rudimentary, removable grease catcher that attaches to the side, there are no convenient cleaning features like the ash cleanout system you’ll find on Camp Chef pellet grills.

Overall, the RT 700 is a large, premium pellet grill that builds on the classic pellet grill design, but it also integrates Smart Wifi technology and quality construction, bundled with some great accessories. It beats many other top brands for temperature control as well, but takes considerable effort to clean and maintain. 

Read the full Rec Tec 700 review here for more details.

Top Features You’ll Love

  • Spacious Cooking Area: Serves up to 50 burgers at once!
  • Smart Wifi Technology: Remotely monitor and control your RT 700 for an amazing hands-free experience.
  • Temperature Control: RT-700 has the lowest temperature variance of any pellet grill in this review
  • Large Capacity Hopper: 40 pound hopper provides over 14hrs of uninterrupted smoking.

Drawbacks But Not Dealbreakers

  • Cleaning & Maintenance: RT 700 doesn’t offer any cleaning features other than the grease catcher. Ash removal will require a handheld vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool.
  • Pellet Quality: Uses Rec Tec Blended Pellets, which are blended with filler instead of 100% hardwood, like the pellets used by Traeger. Lower quality pellets can cause wild temperature swings and they make cleanup even more difficult.

Pros:

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    Bundled with great accessories for added value
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    Maintains consistent temperature over several hours
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    Spacious cooking area with added shelving and racks
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    Durable stainless steel construction

Cons:

  • Lacks cleaning features for ash removal, pellet removal
  • Grease management system is rudimentary
  • Extremely heavy

11. bonus pick: TRAEGER TEXAS ELITE 34 WOOD PELLET GRILL & SMOKER - best professional grade pellet smoker

Traeger Grills TFB88PZBO Pro Series 34 Pellet Grill and Smoker, 884 Sq. In. Cooking Capacity, Bronze

Key Specs:

  • Dimensions: 49 x 54 x 22 inches
  • Weight: 125 pounds
  • 18 pound Hopper Capacity
  • 646 Square inch Cooking Area
  • Digital Elite Controller
  • 6-in-1 Cooking Versatility

Product Overview

If you appreciate a more traditional kind of smoking experience, Traeger Texas Elite 34 has all the advantages of a classic wood fire stove with the best modern engineering quality. Their current line up of grills are world class - hence the mention of the Elite 34 as the top pick for professionals and pitmasters. 

Grill Like A Pro

The Texas Elite utilizes an Integrated Digital Controller which keeps the temperature pretty steady through the cook. It's a little easier to use than a pure digital one - think of it like the knob you have on your home oven. You’ll definitely have to monitor your cooking more closely than if you would using a SMART pellet grill with Wifi, but that’s part of the fun of smoking meat on a pellet grill.

Quality Construction And Design

Although it doesn’t offer precision control, the Texas Elite 34 doesn’t leak smoke uncontrollably and retains heat very well thanks to its premium construction design and compon