When cooking for a party or any other backyard event, it can be hard to beat the simplicity and efficiency of the gas grill.
Burgers? Hot dogs? Steaks? Rarely do any of these options taste better when cooked on anything else!
Gas grills are typically more consistent and cleaner than their charcoal-powered counterparts, and they leave less mess to deal with when the party’s over.
Even better, most gas grills have temperature controls that charcoal grills lack, which eliminates any guesswork for the cook. But maybe you’re worried that you won’t get that same smoky flavor if you use a gas grill? Don’t! Adding wood to the fire can create the same effect!
Sold yet? Then read on for our buyer’s guide!
Like any other purchase, the relationship between price and value is almost always one of the top concerns. But there are several other factors to consider when buying a new gas grill; with durability, grill space, and ease of use being the most important.
Ease of Use
This might be the more important category for new users. Experienced grill masters may not need advanced temperature controls and an easy ignition button, but features like these might be great for a casual or beginning user.
Other aspects to consider include weight and portability. Most of the grills on this list cater to the more-traditional option, but portable grills for home use are becoming popular alternatives to often-expensive and cumbersome, traditional gas grills.
However, weight can be an important factor for non-portable grills as well. For those who like to store their grill in a shed or garage when not in use, being able to move it around without breaking your spine is important too.
This category comes down to personal preference; but if you’re planning on cooking for large groups of people, having a large grill space is essential. That’s why it is important to check for the actual dimensions of the grill space before committing.
However, one potential caveat to consider is whether you’re looking for a traditional backyard grill or something portable. Obviously, if you’re looking to bring your grill on your weekend camping trip, a 150-pound hunk of metal might not be the best way to go.
When you plan on dropping a couple of hundred dollars on a new grill, you want it to last. There are a lot of factors that ensure durability, and that starts with high-grade stainless steel.
Cast-iron grills are highly prone to weather damage and thus lose points here. Steel with various types of coatings aren’t much better as they tend to wear over time, exposing the metal underneath.
No grill will be completely resistant to rust, but the higher the grade of steel the less likely your grill will be rusted over next time you need to whip up some burgers for football Sunday.
This is especially true considering most people will keep their grills outside and open to the elements. Buying a grill that already comes with a cover is a plus.
Each grill on this list will be evaluated on these criteria and at the end we’ll list the best options.
Best Gas Grills Under 200
Model Best Feature Price
Cuisinart CGG-7400 443 sq. In. cooking surface Megamaster 720-0982 Propane Gas Grill 340 sq. In. cooking surface MASTER COOK Classic Liquid Propane Gas Grill 340 sq. In. cooking surface Giantex Portable Propane Gas Grill 12000 290 sq. In. cooking surface (portable grill) Cuisinart CGG-180To 145 sq. In. cooking surface (portable grill)
Our first Pick Cuisinart CGG-7400 – Burner Gas GrillThe first thing to consider is that a portable grill typically maxes out at serving about eight people, so a standing grill still represents the best overall choice for cooking for groups of any size.
Cuisinart’s CGG-7400 may not be the best-looking grill on our list, but it’s good at just about everything without having any critical flaws.
The construction is solid and should last, provided it’s taken care of. Two wheels and only 77 lbs. should keep the CGG-7400 mobile for most users.
And while the tables don’t fold down, if you’re going with a standing grill then you’re probably not too worried about it being compact anyways.
Cooking for larger events should not be too difficult, but it could be a little time-consuming. Cuisinart’s model should have no problem taking care of the average backyard event though.
What really sets the CGG-7400 apart is its host of features without a significant price bump.
Twist-start ignition, an above-average warming area, quality controls, and a stainless steel build will ensure usability and lasting results. It even has a bottle opener!
For only $5 more than the next-best option, the Cuisinart is the best overall deal.
Our 2nd Pick Best for Large Groups – Megamaster 720-0982 Propane Gas GrillThe Megamaster 720-0982 would take the top spot if not for its cast-iron construction. With 474 square inches of pure cooking space.
Plus an extra 182-square-inch warming rack, the Megamaster offers the most grill space by far, making it especially intriguing for large groups.
The downside is the aforementioned cast-iron build, which makes the grill exceptionally susceptible to the elements.
A cover is a must. However, some may prefer the cast iron as it is said to trap heat better, possibly providing a quicker cooking time.
The design also incorporates porcelain flame tamers for even heat distribution, a thermometer, and battery-powered ignition.
Our 3rd Pick Best Traditional Grill on a Budget – MASTER COOK Classic Liquid Propane Gas GrillIf you’re looking for a gas grill, yet don’t want to break the bank, the Master Cook Classic has many of the same features as our top choice. There are several key differences though.
For one, the grill is made of porcelain-coated steel as opposed to stainless steel—so it will need to be kept away from the elements when not in use.
The Master Cook also lacks a fourth burner, so it will not put out as much heat as Cuisinart’s CGG-7400. This could make it difficult to cook for larger events, or quickly.
Our 4th Pick Best Portable – Giantex Portable Propane Gas Grill 12000If a tabletop grill is more your speed, you can’t go wrong with Giantex’s model. The cooking space comes in at 290 square inches, which is almost on par with the traditional-style grills mentioned above.
That’s mightily impressive considering the entire package only weighs about 16 lbs. and is hardly larger than a toaster.
There’s only one burner, but its output is again comparable to standard gas grills.
As far as portables go, the Giantex is capable of cooking a lot more food than its closest competitor (almost 100 more square inches).
Now, the Giantex still isn’t the best solution for cooking for large events—but you can use it inside or out, so it’s great for rainy days when you still want a grilled steak.
But don’t want to get wet. It’s made of stainless steel with a porcelain cooking grate, making it both easy to clean and long lasting.
Our 5th Pick Best Portable Grill on a Budget – Cuisinart CGG-180TIf you’re looking for a portable grill, but don’t necessarily need all of the extra features or grill space, then Cuisinart’s second entry on our list, the CGG-180T, might be the way to go!
The cooking surface is considerably smaller than the Giantex model, but it’s still a great model for camping or home use – just don’t expect to cook for more than eight people at a time.
However, the smaller size makes the CGG-180T the lightest grill on our list at only 13 lbs.
The only other major downside is that it’s not made of stainless steel. However, considering the small size, clean up and maintenance should be relatively easy!
Ultimately, the best gas grill is the one that fits your particular situation. Do you want a traditional, standing grill? Or is the portable more convenient for your lifestyle?
If you live in a small apartment without a yard, the portable option would obviously be the better choice.
And maybe you’re on the fence between cast-iron and stainless steel. Cast-iron is typically cheaper, but its upkeep can be tedious and the grill may have a limited lifetime.
if improperly cleaned and covered. But as we mentioned at the beginning, some prefer cast-iron for its better heat trapping qualities.
The number of guests you typically serve is also an important factor. If you generally expect more than 10 people to come to your next weekend BBQ, going with a grill that has limited cooking space isn’t going to make sense.
These are all important questions to ask yourself before committing to a new grill, so hopefully this list will have made that decision easier!
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