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
- 314 square inches of primary cooking space, warming rack 133 square inches for a total of 447 square inches
- Insulated design means more heat uses less charcoal and less airflow means insulated heat for juicy meat and folding side shelves
- Cooking surface is cast iron, Body is constructed of 22 gauge steel, Exterior finish is powder coated steel, Interior finish is porcelain coated steel
- Cart is constructed of tubular steel w/rubber wheels, locking caster on front, Indexed damper is numbered so you can note the position of the damper
- 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
- No extended port for adding extra charcoal or wood chips
- The ashtray is cumbersome sometimes to reattach
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.
|Dimension||26.6 x 24.8 x 21.6 inches|
|Cooking Size||314-447 square inches|
|Highlight Features||314 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
- 153 Square inch primary cooking area with cast iron grates
- Kamado style grills promote even heating to enhance flavor
- Easy dump ash pan for fast and simple cleanup. Ignition Type-No Ignition System
- Top and bottom air dampers for easy and precise temperature control
- 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
- No casters nor wheels
- Wish the fitting was better
- Need babysitting when you want to make long low-temp cooks
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.
|Dimension||20.5 x 21.5 x 25.3 inches|
|Cooking Size||153 Square inches|
|Highlight Features||153 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
- Premium 18″ Ceramic Grill with Cast Iron Cart & Locking Wheels – The Kamado Joe Classic II gives the perfect cooking size of 18 inches along with its Premium cart that comes with the purchase of your grill, including locking casters and wheels.
- 2-Tier Divide & Conquer - Divide & Conquer Flexible Cooking System transforms the humble grill grate into the most powerful cooking tool in your arsenal. The revolutionary multi-level, half-moon design frees you to cook different foods in different styles at different temperatures—all at the same time
- Kontrol Tower Top Vent - Maintains consistent air setting for precise airflow management during dome opening and closing. Constructed of powder coated cast aluminum, the patent pending dual-adjustment top vent is rain and mold-resistant and allows you to smoke from 225F all the way to searing at 750F.
- Patented Air Lift Hinge – Reduce dome weight by 96% with the Patented Air Lift Hinge. The grill dome can be lifted with a single finger giving the most comfortable grilling experience there is.
- 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
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.
|Dimension||26.4 x 26.4 x 36 inches|
|Highlight Features||the 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
- 327 Square inch cooking area with 142 Square inch secondary cooking area
- Ultimate versatility- smoke, roaster or grill all on one unit
- Unique intake channel and top damper provide easier heat and cooking control
- Ash pan removes from the top- no bottom openings to prevent potential air leaks
- 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
- Much heavier than the standard charcoal grills
- The folding operation of a service tray is not smooth
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.
|Dimension||43.8″ wide x 27.1″ deep x 45.8″ high|
|Cooking Size||327 Square inch cooking area with 142 Square inches secondary cooking area|
|Highlight Features||327 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
- Four Vents Are Better Than Two - PK360 excels at both hot and fast (grilling) or low and slow (barbecue) cooking because it's unique capsule shape combined with 4-point venting makes it so easy to set up and deliver the goods.
- Durable Aluminum Construction - PK360s cast aluminum construction is more durable than porcelain kamados and doesn't rust like steel. PK Grills come with a 10-year yet are often lifetime purchases handed down from 1 generation to the next.
- The Key to Great BBQ Is Temperature Management - PK360s combination of thick cast aluminum and 4-point venting results in a very heat efficient cook chamber with easy 2-zone set-up and more control than the average 2 vent grill.
- Keeping It Portable Since 1952 - As with all PKs, the PK360 detaches from its stand easily so you can take it with you, great for tailgating, camping, fishing/hunting cabins, etc. Since it's charcoal, no extension cord required.
- 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
- 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
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%.
|Dimension||23 x 54 x 43 inches|
|Cooking Size||360 square inches|
|Highlight Features||thick 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
- Insulated design means more heat uses less charcoal and less airflow means insulated heat for juicy meat
- 314 Square inches of primary cooking space
- Tubular steel cart construction, 26" X 26" Of prep/serving space
- Dual adjustable dampers for maintaining specific temperatures
- Can hold more food preps or cooking tools - Deliver an ultra-large sided shelf
- Deliver extra storage - Feature a bigger bottom rack
- Wish the top was not made of plastic
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.
|Dimension||45.2 x 47.4 x 31.3 inches|
|Cooking Size||314 Square inches|
|Highlight Features||insulated 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?
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?
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.
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.
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?
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.
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 has various quality grills and smokers available. The brand was established with permission from the locale palate.
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.
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!