Top 6 Best Kamado Grills For Backyard BBQs – 2020 Update

If you are thinking about making a jump and going on a Kamado grill, here is the right landing as our experts will share their experience and favorite picks based on specific needs. This ultimate guide helps you know a thing or two about which is the best kamado grill for you. So, read on!

  • Char-Griller E16620 – Best overall
  • Char-Griller E06614 – Best for smaller families
  • Kamado Joe KJ23RHC – Best for backyard
  • Char-Broil Kamander Charcoal Grill – Best for bigger families
  • PK Grills PK360 – Best for tailgating
  • Char-Griller E6520 – Most convenient

Char-Griller E16620 – Best overall

Char-Griller E16620
Pros
  • Roomy and convenient - 447 square inches of cooking space & two wide sided foldable shelves
  • Allow for a slow smoke or high heat - Allow for airflow from both top and bottom of the grill
  • High maneuverability - feature two wheels

Cons
  • No extended port for adding extra charcoal or wood chips
  • The ashtray is cumbersome sometimes to reattach

For the kamado grill that performs well on cooking low-and-slow roasts and searing meat with high heats, we reached for the Char-Griller E16620.

It looks quite small but works no differently than a monster. It features a total of 447-square-inch cooking surface, including 314 sq.in. of primary cooking area and 133 sq.in. of warming rack.

This multifunctional grill and smoker is built to last with tubular steel cart, 22-gauge steel body, and coated finish. In addition to the top and bottom adjustable dampers, it easily keeps heat consistently within 200 to 700 degrees F.

As this is a heavy grill, we really appreciate the added wheels so that you can move it around with ease.

Product Specs

Weight90 pounds
Dimension26.6 x 24.8 x 21.6 inches
Cooking Size314-447 square inches
Highlight Features314 square inches of primary cooking space, warming rack 133 square inches for a total of 447 square inches

For people who sought after a versatile kamado grill that can easily smoke, sear and cook low-and-slow meat, this is a shining contender.

Char-Griller E06614 – Best for smaller families

Char-Griller E06614
Pros
  • Compact, lightweight, and super-inexpensive
  • Heat-efficient - Hold heat as efficiently as the high-end ceramic grills
  • Fuel-efficient - Consume really less fuel without compromising its heating efficiency

Cons
  • No casters nor wheels
  • Wish the fitting was better
  • Need babysitting when you want to make long low-temp cooks

If grilling is just a hobby to serve your family, the Char-Griller E06614 is our suggestion.

Featuring 153 square inches of cooking surface, it is definitely the tiniest kamado grill but don’t let that turn you off. Aside from a very affordable price point, the unit is plenty big enough to roast a whole chicken for example.

And it has all features of a larger-sized kamado grill, such as dual air-flow dampers, triple-walled steel with insulation, heat gauge, and hinged locking lid. Its heating efficiency is not inferior to the more expensive ceramic grills during our testing, which is also the best part.

Just a pity that there’re no wheels attached, in turns, you’ve got two handles and its weight is not that heavy so you can lift it up and move from here to there.

Product Specs

Weight37 pounds
Dimension20.5 x 21.5 x 25.3 inches
Cooking Size153 Square inches
Capacity4-6
Highlight Features153 Square inch primary cooking area with cast iron grates

Sizing 20.5 x 21.5 x 25.3 inches with a 153 square-inch cooking area, the Char-Griller E06614 is an excellent option not just for small families but also for RVs, tailgating, and camping.

Kamado Joe KJ23RHC – Best for backyard

Kamado Joe KJ23RHC
Pros
  • Can handle multiple cooking styles - Feature many innovative achievements
  • Ultra-durable - Offer 10x more durability than the standard kamado grills
  • Increase the grill efficiency significantly

Cons
  • Expensive

We highly recommend the Kamado Joe KJ23RHC for outdoor cooking enthusiasts for some good reasons.

It is a high-end ceramic grill made with wheels, locking casters, premium cart, and 18” of cooking size.

It brings numerous innovative achievements in the field of Kamado, such as the Divide & Conquer Flexible Cooking System and the revolutionary SlōRoller, to let you bake, sear, smoke, and slow-roast like a dream.

The bestselling add-on feature is its wire mesh fiberglass gasket with a double-thick design for 10x durability and superior air-tight seal. We also love the AMP firebox as it helps increase grill efficiency while eliminating breakage.

Product Specs

Weight250 pounds
Dimension26.4 x 26.4 x 36 inches
Cooking Size18”
Highlight Featuresthe cooking size of 18 inches;  Premium cart

If a multifunctional, durable, and heat-efficient kamado grill is what you’re looking for to use in your backyard, look no further.

Char-Broil Kamander Charcoal Grill – Best for bigger families

Char-Broil Kamander Charcoal Grill
Pros
  • Super-spacious - 469 square inches of cooking surface
  • Track & control heat more easily - Have a lid-mounted temperature gauge
  • Extra convenience - Many useful add-ons, the wire bottom shelf & integrated tool hooks

Cons
  • Much heavier than the standard charcoal grills
  • The folding operation of a service tray is not smooth

If you care about entertaining for huge crowds, this is worth considering.

Aside from 327 square inches of primary grilling space, there is a 142-sq.in. secondary cooking area and a folding sided shelf.

It features the most spacious cooking space compared to other counterparts here and in addition, this versatile unit can help you with grilling, roasting, and smoking, all in one cooker. With this, you can monitor the grill’s heat much better thanks to the lid-mounted temperature gauge.

Its additional features are also worth noting, such as the integrated tool hooks for brush, tongs, and spatula or the wire bottom shelf for extra storage space.

Product Specs

Weight117.5 lbs.
Dimension43.8″ wide x 27.1″ deep x 45.8″ high
Cooking Size327 Square inch cooking area with 142 Square inches secondary cooking area
Highlight Features327 Square inch cooking area + 142 Square inch secondary cooking area; Ultimate versatility- smoke, roaster or grill all on one unit;

Whether you’re going to entertain a crowd, gatherings, or big family, it’s not a thing to the Char-Broil Kamander.

PK Grills PK360 – Best for tailgating

PK Grills PK360
Pros
  • Can cook different tailgating recipes at a time - 2-zone cooking with the oval shape and separate control
  • Easier to control the airflow & available for different cooking styles - Feature a 4-point venting system
  • Easy to monitor the temperature and heat inside the grill - Have a Tel-Thru thermometer

Cons
  • Wish there were more accessories
  • No factory solution for pure direct cooking with deflector plate
  • The bottom of the grill is a bit struggling to clean

Let the PK Grills PK360 help you make the most tailgating season.

It delivers a durable yet lightweight aluminum construction, 2-zone cooking, and 4-point venting system.

It also boasts 360 square inches of cooking space and as each burner is separately controlled, you can cook different tailgating recipes at a time.

In addition, you’ve got two folding sided shelves for convenient food prep and serving.

The most favorite feature of our testers is innovative 4-point ventilation. It excels at both low and slow cooking or hot and fast grilling, delivering the goods. Not to say that there is a Tel-Thru thermometer which is accurate to +/- 1%.

Product Specs

Weight67 pounds
Dimension23 x 54 x 43 inches
Cooking Size360 square inches
Highlight Featuresthick cast aluminum; 4-point venting; Capsule Volume: 5374 Cubic Inches

Designed with durability, functionality, and easy to use in mind, the PK Grills PK360 is fun to use and produces excellent food, which makes it a fantastic grill for tailgating.

Char-Griller E6520 – Most convenient

Char-Griller E6520
Pros
  • Can hold more food preps or cooking tools - Deliver an ultra-large sided shelf
  • Deliver extra storage - Feature a bigger bottom rack

Cons
  • Wish the top was not made of plastic

This Char-Griller model comes with many similar features to the E16620 above. Such as the tubular steel cart construction, cast iron cooking grates, dual adjustable dampers, 314 square inches of cooking space, and so on.

But making it outstanding is the convenient cart design. It gives the largest size compared to other counterparts here to help keep more cooking tools or food prep.

The lower storage rack is also leveraged that can hold bigger stuff, like chimney starter and briquettes, keeping your grilling space neater and well-organized.

Product Specs

Weight106 pounds
Dimension45.2 x 47.4 x 31.3 inches
Cooking Size314 Square inches
Highlight Featuresinsulated design; 314 Square inches of primary cooking space; Tubular steel cart construction, 26″ X 26″ Of prep/serving space

This Kamado Kooker with highlighting on a spacious cart and bottom storage rack is a perfect choice for people who require extra convenience in their grill.

How to choose the best kamado grill?

Best Kamado Grills For Backyard BBQs

Grill sizes & cooking area

To get a true sense of grill size, don’t look at those relative terms like “Large” or “extra-large”, instead, find the actual dimensions.

The average sizes of kamado grills are within 18” to 24”, measured in diameter of the cooking grate as they are round. This size range is ideal to cook large food, like rack of ribs and briskets. But if your demands are just eggs, steaks, and burgers, a small size of grill from 9.5” to 16” is better.

The bigger the size, the larger the cooking area, generally.

Cooking area is measured by square inches (or sq. in.) and this feature effects on the number of servings it can handle. For example, the Char-Grill E06614 provides 153 square-inch grilling surface, which is equivalent to 2-3 servings at a time (estimated), that’s why it’s ideal for couples or small families.

On the contrary, the Char-Griller E16620 is up to 314 square inches, not to say that it also has a secondary cooking area of 133 square inches.

There is another basic rule of thumb – the larger the grill size, the costlier, therefore, we suggest looking for a suitable one that fits nicely your needs. To consider this feature properly, you should ask yourself these questions:

  • How many people are you going to serve?
  • Which foods are going to be grilled in it? The quantity & the size?
  • How much space you have for it?
  • Your budget?

Materials

Grill materials

The materials of kamado grills are divided into two options – the ceramic and the steel.

Ceramic is the traditional material of kamado grills, highlighting exceptional heat absorption ability and moisture retention for the tastiest food flavors. However, the fragileness and heft are two dead flaws of it, which is also the reason why some brands start making their grill of steel.

This alternative offers the same heat retention as ceramic grills thanks to the double-walled insulation at a much lighter weight and more durable construction.

Hardware materials

Aside from the grill body, you should consider the materials of its hardware, such as hinge, lid bands, handles, lower and upper dampers, and grill grate.

Stainless steel is the most desirable as it is sleek in appearance, easy to clean, resistant to corrosion, rust-free, and durable. But in terms of grill grate, its performance is inferior to the cast iron as stainless-steel is not so cut and dry.

Cast iron provides a better sear as it transfers heat more efficiently, however, you should maintain it properly and regularly to avoid rusting.

Accessories

This is optional but if you require extra convenience in your grill, consider these add-ons:

  • Grill cover
  • Bottom rack for extra storage
  • Tool hooks to hang your cooking tools, like spatula and tongs
  • Side shelves to keep your food prep
  • Cart with wheels or casters for mobility

Who makes the best kamado grill?

Best Kamado Grills For Backyard BBQs

Char-Griller

The brand got its start decades ago with the signature charcoal barrel-style grill line. Their products are designed with customers and families in mind to not just provide high-quality, workable products but also at the best price points.

Kamado Joe

Not just a line of product, Kamado Joe is a reliable brand founded by two guys who love grilling and get serious about making the world’s best ceramic cookers. Their products are well-loved for innovative accessories, smart features, and superior quality.

PK Grills

PK Grills has various quality grills and smokers available. The brand was established with permission from the locale palate.

FAQs

Best Kamado Grills For Backyard BBQs

Are Kamado grills worth it?

Yes, they are.

This type of grill is unbeatable in terms of heat retention and insulation in cooking, therefore, it helps your grilled food get the best moist and tender. Regardless, it is known as fuel-efficient grill design.

What is a Kamado grill?

Kamado is a Japanese term used to describe traditional charcoal or wood-fueled cooking appliances in Japan. The traditional model was made from ceramic or clay to create a large egg shape for some unique cooking benefits, such as insulation, heat retention, and fuel efficiency.

Can I use Kamado Joe in the rain?

Yes, you can. As long as it is stated to be safe to be outdoors. If it’s a ceramic kamado grill, elements like cold weather or rains won’t effect on it.

Can you use regular charcoal in a Kamado grill?

Yes, you can. But we still recommend using hardwood lump charcoal.

How long does a Kamado grill last?

12 hours or more

Why are ceramic grills better?

Ceramic is considered the best material in grills manufacturing in terms of heat retention and insulation that other materials, like steel, can’t beat against it.

Conclusion

We hope this article has helped you found out the best kamado grill if you weren’t sure which is right for you beforehand. These 6 picks are known for their excellent performance, quality, and reliability, not just enforced by our experts but also by other customers worldwide.

Now, it’s your turn! Good luck!

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