We’re hoping to be able to sit out in the sun and enjoy BBQ food all summer long. If you’re looking to get a new BBQ or buy your first, this is a guide for you. We take a look at the pros and cons of buying a charcoal, gas and electric BBQs with a pick of our favourite budget BBQs.
The act of char-grilling food has been a cooking method for centuries. It started with digging a huge hole in the ground for the heat source with a roast above. But the convenient charcoal BBQ, the more portable kind, has been around since the early 1900s, honed since around the 50s.
Although they’re somewhat messier than gas or electric grills, many prefer a charcoal BBQ because the heat source sears the meat faster and adds a smoky flavour to the meat/vegetables as it cooks.
Using a charcoal BBQ does entail a bit of caution though. The charcoal releases carbon dioxide the entire time it is burning. So, it’s best to ensure that your charcoal BBQ is kept away from windows and doors, fences and trees when lit. You should never bring the charcoal grill back into the house/garage until the fire has cooled and the briquettes removed.
There is also a little bit of maintenance when it comes to lighting and keeping your BBQ fire hot but is something you can get used to. It takes a little while to heat up but if you’re all about the flavour and/or like something the slow cooked smoker styles. Charcoal wins every time.
If you’re a bit fan of the smoky flavour, you can’t go wrong with Aldi’s Charcoal BBQ & Smoker.
When it comes to convenience and cost, you can’t beat a gas BBQ. Even though the most basic units can be slightly more expensive and you have to take a contract out for a gas canister, it’s actually cheaper to run a gas BBQ than it is to run a charcoal one. Per use, a charcoal BBQ costs at least £5-7, whereas gas will cost around £1.50.
Additionally, it is somewhat easier to clean because you’ll not have to manage the briquettes when you’ve finished using it, though you will still have some grease to content with.
Although you won’t necessarily get the same taste factor that you do with a charcoal, you still get a smoky flavour, it may not be as concentrated. Plus, you get more accurate heat distribution. So, cooking on a BBQ is also easier.
As with Charcoal BBQs, you need to mindful that the gas releases carbon dioxide so you need to always ensure that the tap is closed when not in use and the fire lit when its open.
We bought the Landmann 2 Burner Grill to see if we liked it/would use it and we LOVE it, great price for an introduction too!
Buy your Calor gas through most home stores- often, depending on size, you can use the patio cannisters.
You won’t get the same smoky flavour that you get with a charcoal or gas BBQ but you’ll certainly get the healthiest grill.
Additionally, if cleaning a charcoal or gas BBQ puts you off, an electric one is possibly the most effortless. Lots of them have electric plates so there is only one element to clean rather than several.
You also have the safest grill as an electric one doesn’t omit the same noxious gas that a charcoal does or that a gas can. Furthermore, they’re safe to use indoors! So if the weather is bad, it won’t scupper your plans to host a BBQ.
Want something super portable- this Excelvan indoor BBQ is highly rated!
Want something a little more BBQ conventional? This Tower Electric BBQ is budget friendly and highly rated.
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