You may enjoy your favorite grilled foods while rooting for your favorite team on a wonderful tailgating barbecue.
Tailgate grills that were simple to travel and set up were the focus of our list of the finest tailgate grills. Grills were also a must.
The Traeger Tailgater is the best choice for most people among the portable grills we examined since it can grill and smoke, uses pellets, and can be transported easily. To avoid using pellets, we recommend the Weber Q2200 grill.
The finest barbecues for tailgating in 2023, according to our research.
We know that everyone’s budget is different, so we’ve provided a variety of grills and fuels to suit your needs.
Before purchasing a grill, make sure to check with your local authorities to see whether charcoal cooking is allowed in your area.
1. Best Overall – Traeger Tailgater Pellet Grill
Our top option was a pellet grill because they are among of the most forgiving grills that can cook hot and quick or slow and steady for more flexibility in their cooking methods.
If you don’t have access to power, you may want to consider one of the other options.
Because of its 429 square-inch cooking area, the Traeger Tailgater is the greatest portable pellet grill on the market.
With folding legs and a small yet solid frame, the Tailgater is perfect for tailgating, making it a great choice for road trips as well.
To feed your whole crew, this is the biggest of the grills we’ve tested, so you’ll have plenty of room.
The use of a digital controller ensures that the interior temperature remains constant. It also boasts an easy-to-use control mechanism that doesn’t become complicated even when tailgating gets hectic, so you’ll be able to use it all day long.
The Tailgater is a pellet grill that is simple to ignite, burns reliably, heats up fast, and even features a 10-minute shutdown cycle so that you can enjoy the game without having to worry about a blaze.
In my opinion, the benefits of a pellet barbecue much outweigh the negatives of a gas or charcoal grill if you have a solid electrical supply.
What we like:
- Temperature stability: It’s inevitable that these portable pellet grills may fluctuate a little, but the Tailgater has a far lower rate than some others.
- Portability: Most trunks and doors can accommodate it when it’s folded up.
- Simple to clean: It’s easy to clean the inside and doesn’t create a lot of ash.
What we don’t like:
- Cooking thighs: The folding legs, although sturdy once finished, are difficult to deploy and dismantle, particularly if you’re doing it alone.
- Pellet hopper with a limited capacity: Every few hours, you’ll have to reload your 8lb pellet hopper, which is the smallest of its kind in its class,
The Traeger Tailgater is all it claims to be: portable, dependable, simple to use, and simple to clean.
2. Best charcoal – Weber Jumbo Joe Charcoal Grill
Food cooked over charcoal has a distinct taste that is difficult to match. In addition to being the most inexpensive, this kind of barbecue is also the most durable.
In addition to its folding form, the Weber Jumbo Joe Charcoal Grill has an adjustable airflow system for fine-tuning the temperature of the cooking surface, as well as a cast aluminum body with steel components.
The 22-pound weight of the Jumbo Joe barbecue allows it to be transferred from one location to the next without the need for a flatbed truck to make the trip to the game. It topped our list of the finest charcoal grills for camping.
To prevent the lid from falling to the ground, the Tuck-N-Carry lid lock acts as a lid holder. The porcelain enameled lid and bowl maintain heat and will not rust or peel.
Charcoal and heat are all that’s required!
What we like:
- Convenient set-up and transportability: With a simple twist, the legs can be attached to the Jumbo Joe, completing the majority of its construction.
- Removeable coal holder: In windy weather, the detachable coal grate makes it simple to remove the ash and keep the coals or embers from being blown about by the wind.
- Holder that locks: There is no need to hold the lid or place it on the ground since the lid lock serves as a lid holder.
What we don’t like:
- There isn’t a thermometer: Unlike other barbecues, the Jumbo Joe lacks a built-in temperature gauge.
The Tailgater and a charcoal barbecue may be compared side by side if you’re having trouble deciding between the two.
Jumbo Joe delivers Weber’s quality and usefulness to your next tailgate party with some contemporary conveniences.
3. Best gas tailgate grill – Weber Q2200 Portable Propane Gas Grill
A gas grill like the Weber Q2200 is a wonderful option if you don’t want to depend on electricity.
If you’re looking for a high-quality barbecue, go no further than the Weber portable grill!
If you’re searching for a tailgate grill that can be easily handled by one person and yet fit within your car, this is a great option.
It is worth noting that gas grills offer benefits over pellet and charcoal barbecues. They’re easier to carry, don’t need pellets or energy, and do a better job of searing.
When it’s time to go, they’re also a bit simpler to clean.
This Weber grill is ideal for cooking on the road because of its compact design and foldable stand. Even though the Q2200’s size is small compared to other portable grills, it nonetheless produces enough food for eight people thanks to its one burner technology.
You won’t have to stoop to cook your burgers and steaks anymore thanks to the stand’s exceptional cooking height.
What we like:
- Lightweight: Q2200 tailgate barbecue weighs only 22 kilograms, making it a breeze to transfer from place to place.
- Quick to install The foldable stand: Convenient to pack away, and has a reasonable cooking height.
- Full-service BBQ cart is possible: You may purchase a BBQ cart for the Q2200 as an optional accessory.
What we don’t like:
- A modestly sized kitchen (280 square inches): But the Q2200 offers a manageable cooking space for portability despite its larger size.
- The hose and regulator: The Q2200’s regulator and hose are too big for a portable model since they are intended to be used with a large patio-style gas bottle.
The Q2200 is a fantastic alternative for anybody seeking for a portable barbecue. It can serve up to eight people and requires very little cleanup afterward.
4. Best splurge – Weber Traveler Portable Propane Gas Grill
The Weber Traveler is an excellent choice for your next big game barbecue if you’re looking for something a touch more upscale.
A gas barbecue that’s simple to put up with only one hand and collapses into a cart with two large caster wheels for convenient storage. There’s enough room for 15 burgers or 20 sausages on the Weber grill for everyone to have their fill at once, even if it’s modest in stature.
The key selling feature of the Weber Traveler is its fast and simple fold-down construction, which makes it very portable, despite the grill’s simplicity.
What we like:
- Portable to the max: It’s simple to store thanks to the folding cart with two large caster wheels and a one-handed setup.
- Cooking area is enormous: In order to feed everyone at once, the grill has the capacity to cook up to 15 burgers or 20 sausages.
- Set up a shelf: The addition of a preparation shelf to the Weber Traveler ups the functionality a notch.
What we don’t like:
- House for the adapter in its own right: If you wish to utilize a different cylinder size, you’ll need to purchase a separate adapter for the Weber Traveler.
- Pricey: People who are hoping to save money on their barbecue purchase may find the Weber Traveler a bit too expensive.
If you’re looking for the ultimate tailgate barbecue, go no further than the Weber Traveler.
Consideration should be given to
In addition to the Traeger Tailgater and the Weber Q2200, we’d like to mention the Weber Jumbo Joe and Weber Traveler as other contenders for the best tailgate grill.
5. Green Mountain Grills TREK
Green Mountain Grills TREK, though not a tailgate grill, has a few unique features that make it ideal for a road trip. You can control and monitor your grill from your lounger or on the go with GMG Smart Control. It’s chunky, compact but big enough to cook a rack of ribs on.
6. Traeger Ranger
The Traeger Ranger is a fantastic camping grill, but it also works well on a tabletop. It’s small enough to fit in your trunk, but the powerful burners have been designed to use less fuel, so you can still cook delicious food on it.
7. Grill2Go X200 by Char-Broil
Grill2Go X200 is a portable grill that’s ideal for tailgating. After cooking, it folds up into a small package that can easily fit in your car or trunk because it comes with its own carrying case.
8. CGG-180TB from Cuisinart
The CGG-180TB grill from Cuisinart is no exception. Fast and easy to clean, this grill is a must-have for anyone who likes to cook.
9. Coleman RoadTrip 285
With four burners, the Coleman RoadTrip may be used both at home and in the great outdoors, allowing you to modify your cooking power and fuel usage dependent on your location.
When it comes to tailgating, what are the essentials?
If you’re looking for a tailgating grill, make sure it’s both portable and functional by paying attention to the following factors:
In addition to determining the grill’s appropriateness for tailgating and its flavor, the kind of fuel used is critical.
- Propane: In terms of purchasing, transporting and using propane, it’s a breeze. However, bigger propane tanks may be cumbersome and difficult to handle.
- Charcoal: When it comes to tailgating, charcoal is a popular option since it has such a distinct taste. On the flip side, charcoal gets a bad rap for being difficult to regulate temperature on and takes a long time to heat up.
- Electric: Electric barbecues are simple to transport and store, but they lack the versatility of a tailgate grill. But running an electric grill from a vehicle engine or generator is more complicated than other solutions.
- Pellet: Traeger Tailgater‘s top spot is due in part to the fact that wood pellets fall somewhere in between convenience and functionality. Pellet grills are lightweight, portable, and fast to heat up and maintain a steady temperature, making them a popular alternative to traditional charcoal barbecues.
Capacity for cooking
Is there a certain number of individuals you have to feed? According to the response, you will have to decide the amount of space you need. People will have to wait a long time for their lunch if you can’t prepare enough at once.
It is essential that tailgating grills strike a balance between mobility and cooking capability. We’ve opted to concentrate on versions that are smaller and more portable since you might lose some of the convenience if you go too large.
There should be enough room in the kitchen for everyone’s food to be cooked at the same time, so that no one is left waiting for their meal.
Each of these four tailgate grills excels in one essential area: portability. However, some are better than others, and we’ve taken the effort to explain why. The mobility of a tailgate barbecue is linked to these considerations.
- Lightweight: If you don’t plan on hauling this grill about on foot, it must fit in the trunk of your vehicle, which means it must be light enough to raise into position and then move around once you get at your location.
- A foldable cart/standing platform: Because of this, you’ll want to make sure your tailgate barbecue has an easy-to-fold or dismantle cart or stand. This is exemplified by the Weber Traveler.
- Chunky wheels: It’s important to have casters that are both sturdy and easy to use if you plan on moving your grill a lot, especially if you plan on using it often.
- Strong grips are provided: It’s simpler to carry your barbecue around during a tailgate party or other gathering if it has a sturdy, well-made handle.
Construction quality and warranty
The quality of the grill’s construction is of the utmost importance. Make sure the grill is both strong and well-built.
The length of a manufacturer’s warranty will tell you how confident they are in their product’s long-term viability.
If you’re tailgating, it’s possible that your grills will be put to use in a way that’s out of the ordinary.
In some cases, wind may cause the flames on some models to spread further than intended, or your grill could be knocked over during transport, where poor construction quality could cause damage that goes beyond simply cracking the bodywork.
If you’re planning to buy one of these goods for yourself or as a present, be sure to check out the warranty policy and specifics of what is and isn’t covered by the company’s warranty policy.
After a long day of tailgating, cleaning a grill is a chore that no one enjoys.
The best grill on the market, on the other hand, eliminates this concern completely!
Using these grills is a cinch, and they’re meant to be easy to clean after they’ve cooled down.
For charcoal grills, look for detachable grease traps, ceramic grill grates, ash collectors, and pellet grills with easy-to-empty fireboxes and pellet hoppers.
Grill safety when tailgating
There are a few things to bear in mind while cooking properly during a tailgate party:
- If you’re using a charcoal grill, make sure to put out the hot coals as soon as you’re done cooking with them, either by letting them burn out entirely or by extinguishing them yourself.
- A gas grill at home should not have any of its hoses visible while it is being used for cooking. When it comes to hoses, you don’t want anything to go wrong.
- Because pellet smokers utilize an eccentric auger motor, water should never be used to clean them. Brushing off the ash after each usage is all that is necessary.
- The heat from a grill may be deadly to anybody who is not properly supervised, so always keep it at least a few feet away from youngsters.
- When lighting your grill, avoid using lighter fluids and steer clear of using gasoline unless absolutely necessary. In the worst-case situation, gas will cause your grill to be damaged and your food to taste horrible.