Sometimes you’ll need to be able to get a grill going without turning to a large two or three burner grill. Whether you’re camping, or you simply need a small grill at home for a small property, a portable propane grill is a good appliance to have. With a unit like the Char-Broil Portable Gas Grill, you won’t need to worry about the fuss of firing up and then cleaning a large grill, and you’ll have the added benefit of being able to take this grill anywhere that you need to go.
Let’s take a look and see what makes this particular grill stand out, and see if it’s the right option for you.
Key Product Features of the Char-Broil Portable Propane Grill
- Lightweight and easily portable.
- Simple to set up and basic operation.
- 187 square inch cooking surface.
- Up to 11,000 BTU from a single burner.
- Steel construction.
- Raised lid included.
First Impressions of the Char-Broil Portable Grill
Looking at this grill for the first time you will be surprised at just how compact it is. It has been designed for portability first, and looks aren’t really a consideration. You aren’t going to be able to turn heads with this grill, but it feels solid and sturdy when you remove it from the box. Assembly requirements are minimal and you could easily have this grill ready to go in less than ten minutes. It comes with a simple instruction manual, although most people won’t require the documentation to see and understand how this grill works.
The initial impressions are of a portable propane grill that is functional, but not overly stylish. It follows a basic rectangular design, and has an almost matte finish which is achieved thanks to the protective coating on the steel. Although this grill doesn’t look fancy, it feels to be made from quality materials and looks stable enough for outdoor use at a campsite, on a beach, or even in your backyard. The small design and low stand could also mean that you can use this on an outdoor countertop or picnic table for easy grilling.
Who Should Be Interested in a Portable Propane Grill?
From the first impression you will know that this is not a feature grill that you would install in your main outside entertainment area. Instead, it can be used as a backup grill or as a camping grill. There are a number of specific scenarios where a grill like this would be useful, and if you choose to buy this grill, you’ll quickly appreciate its small size and respectable cooking abilities.
If you live in a smaller home such as an apartment or condominium, a large grill would be impractical or may not even be allowed, depending on your building management rules. A small grill like this can be used safely on a small outdoor patio, and you won’t have to worry about charcoal smoke that you would get from a traditional grill. Because it’s small it’s easy to set up and start cooking with, and cleanup is also simple and easy. The rectangular shape of the grill makes it possible to install aluminum foil or an aluminum tray to collect any grease or debris that might collect at the bottom of the grill.
Another reason for owning this grill could be as a backup or if you need a small grill when you want barbeque style food without having to use your larger grill. The simplicity and small nature of this grill means that it is more efficient than using a large grill, especially if you are cooking for only two to four people.
Of course, most people looking at a portable propane grill like this Char Broil model will be looking for a grill that they can use outdoors at a campsite, at the beach, or even when tailgating at an outdoor festival or outside of a sports event. The small size means that it can easily be stored inside of an RV, on the back of a truck, or even inside the passenger area or the trunk of a car. The legs on this grill can be completely folded down, so once it has cooled it can be stored safely.
Whatever your reasons are for wanting a portable propane grill, this compact unit will be able to take care of your basic grilling needs, and the low price makes it a compelling investment.
What Kind of Food Can You Cook on the Char-Broil Portable Gas Grill ?
The food that you can cook on this grill will be limited by its size, so that is something that you will need to take into consideration before cooking. The cooking surface measures 187 square inches, which allows you to cook the equivalent of six to eight burger patties, depending on their size. You could also get two to three decent sized steaks on this grill, or up to six steaks if they are smaller cuts. For hot dogs, breakfast sausages, or barbeque skewers, you could easily fit around ten items along the length of the grill. Everybody’s mileage will vary depending on the food that is being cooked, but you can be confident knowing that it’s large enough to cook most basic grilled foods that don’t require slow roasting. You’ll even be able to make a grilled pizza and heat up bread rolls, just as long as you take the size and shape of the pizza base into account.
For whole chickens, large roast cuts of meat, or even most ribs, the size of the grill and the depth of the lid will not be enough for easy cooking. This is not just a limitation of this portable gas grill, but is something that generally affects all small grills, regardless of the fuel source. For basic camping and grilling burgers, you won’t find the limitations of this grill to be a problem. Any time that you want to cook something larger, such as a whole chicken or a rack of meat, then you’ll need to use a full sized two or three burner propane grill, or a large charcoal grill.
Construction Materials and Quality
Considering the affordable price of this portable propane grill, you might assume that the materials used are of a low standard. Thankfully, and to the credit of Char-Broil, the materials used are of high quality, and generally exceed what you could expect at this price point. Steel is used in the construction, and all metal surfaces have been coated to inhibit rust and prevent damage from heat. The grilling grate is made from quality steel and it is chrome plated to ensure that it handles heat well, and it also makes it easier to clean. You can easily clean the grilling surface with soap and water, and it’s even dishwasher safe if you are using this grill at home.
Overall, the materials and the construction quality are good. There are very few parts to this grill, so that helps to eliminate potential points of failure. One thing that stands out about the design is the way that the legs fold up and over the lid when it is closed. This means that once the barbeque is cooled and ready for storage or transport, the lid will be secured in place without any chance of it coming loose. This is particularly helpful if you will be transporting the grill, and haven’t had a chance to give it a complete clean.
The only real problems with the construction are that some of the stamped metal parts have sharp edges, which means that you’ll need to take care when assembling and cleaning the grill, and the handles of the grill are plastic, and won’t last as long as the steel parts.
Char-Broil Portable Propane Grill – Pros and Cons
Like any product, there are a number of pros and cons to purchasing and owning this grill. In our extensive review we’ve been able to identify the best and worst features of this grill, and here they are at a glance, for your easy reference.
- No need for charcoal to fuel this grill.
- Effortlessly portable so it can go anywhere that you do – especially useful for camping trips.
- The rectangular design is ideal for steaks, barbeque skewers, sausages, and burgers.
- The included lid allows for the highest temperatures to be reached easily.
- A single burner with a valve control makes it easy to maintain desired temperatures.
- The materials are of high quality and the grill folds up for easy storage and transportation.
- Includes handles on the side of the grill.
- The propane regulator needs to be removed for transport, which may be a problem for some people (i.e. it is easier to get lost).
- No hinge on the lid means it is held on by simple tabs. You’ll need to awkwardly move your arm around the back of the grill to safely remove the lid.
- Plastic handles not as reliable as the rest of the grill.
Recommended Accessories for the Char-Broil Portable Propane Grill
If you’re going to be using a portable propane grill, then you’ll need the best accessories to be able to use it at home or whenever you’re out camping.
To use the grill safely and with some easily transportable gas bottles, you could invest in some 16.4-ounce propane bottles. Coleman makes quality propane bottles that are designed for camping and outdoor use, and they’ll work perfectly with this Char Broil portable propane grill. Take a look at this high quality two pack set from Coleman.
The grill doesn’t come with a hose adapter, so if you don’t have a compatible one, then you can buy the official Char-Broil 4-Foot hose and adapter. This will work with the Coleman propane
bottles, or any compatible propane bottle.
What do Owners Say About this Grill?
You now know about all of the best features of the Char-Broil portable propane grill, and even some of the features that could be improved. Knowing what current owners say about this grill can help you to make the most informed decision.
From more than 1400 verified customer reviews, the Char-Broil portable gas grill currently has a 3.5 / 5 star rating. This indicates positive customer feedback from the majority of reviewers. Customers have praised the ease of use, the portability, and some design features such as the folding legs that also secure the lid.
Owners like that the grill is affordable, but that it still uses quality materials to ensure that it won’t just be a throwaway product. Some areas where the grill lost stars was the plastic handles used on the side of the grill, the gas regulator that is not permanently attached, and for the fact that it doesn’t come included with a gas hose. The fact that you will need to buy both gas bottles and a gas hose will increase the overall price of this grill.
Our Final Thoughts and Recommendation
At this price point in the market there are only a few quality grills that are worth buying. This Char-Broil portable propane grill is definitely one of them. It has solid construction even with a few rough edges, and it’s large enough for basic grilling at home or on a campsite. Although there are some downsides to owning this, such as needing to buy disposable gas bottles and a hose, it still offers convenience that will benefit many people who don’t want to purchase a small charcoal grill.
For the price that you will pay for this grill, it’s easily worth the money, and it’s made well enough that you will get some good years of operation before you need to upgrade or think about a replacement. If a portable propane grill is what you’ve been looking for, then the Char-Broil is easy to recommend.