Tabletop Grills are usually very lightweight and mobile, which makes them useful in many different situations.
It might be your little stationary grill if you have a very limited space.
On the other hand, it’s a great option if you’re thinking of cooking while on the road or camping. Low weight and compact size are the greatest advantages in this category.
The capacity of a tabletop grill is more than enough for a small family that doesn’t grill a lot.
It is also a good place to mention many useful solutions such as the lid lock or folding grill legs – all of that is especially desirable in a grill intended for cooking away from home.
I picked the best tabletop grills that will prove themselves in many different places. You can choose out of not only different types of construction but the type of fuel as well (mainly charcoal or gas).
The 4 Best Tabletop Grills Reviewed
Below you will find my favorite charcoal & gas tabletop grills out of the entire offer on the market. Some of them, combined with accessories, offer nearly the same kind of comfort as a regular grill.
Carefully analyze all the options, they are pretty diverse which makes them suitable for many different situations.
Weber is the leading manufacturer in the world of BBQ, responsible for creating the best charcoal grills. There is no arguing that it is a brand that’s been setting trends and maintaining high quality of their products for years now.
I have picked a tabletop grill for you that combines the most crucial characteristics – quality of workmanship, durability, functionality, low price and great flavor of food.
Weber Go-Anywhere is a wonderful grill that will work great in many different situations. It is perfect for small barbecue jobs of small families and possesses phenomenal mobile qualities.
Under the lid you will find 160 square inches of cooking area which means you can fit as many as 6 burgers, two large steaks or a few pieces of chicken (about 6).
The entire construction is so lightweight that you can easily bring it along on the road.
Its advantages include not only the weight but also its adequately designed construction that makes it easier to transport from one place to another.
Aluminum legs that normally separate a hot grill from the surface can serve as a lid lock when folded.
I also give it huge thumbs up for having as many as three handles, one on the top and two on the sides. Plenty of manufacturers forget that handles allow to safely move a hot grill when cooking.
It comes with air vents but I have to honestly admit that in this type of construction these are not quite as effective. If you want effective temperature control, I have an alternative option for you.
Weber also has the Smokey Joe in its offer, which comes in the well-known round Kettle design. Such construction offers much better temperature control, but I picked Go-Anywhere due to its price and mobility.
Here it’s more about experience and sensibility. Start cooking with a smaller amount of charcoal, and it will be easier for you to achieve and maintain the right temperature. It is mostly important due to the very small distance between the grates and the furnace.
A griddle is much different than a typical grill, for one thing, instead of grill grates it has a flat plate. It is characterized by its versatility, which is especially useful when away from home (like camping).
I’d just like to point out that it is a gas tabletop grill that runs on little propane bottles.
The flat surface of this Blackstone Tabletop Grill offers completely different possibilities and very large capacity (330 square inches).
It works great at cooking delicate things and the type that falls through the gaps in grill grates. I’m talking about all kinds of sliced veggies, eggs or even pancakes. Such menu, when combined with typical meat, constitutes a single diverse wholesome meal.
Due to its versatility, it is one of my favorite options and a great alternative to a standard grill, which you can read about in my guide to camping grills.
One certain advantage of this model is two independently controlled burners that make it possible to create two heat zones. Sadly, a small downside is the exposed main cooking surface which might pose some problems when cooking under windy conditions.
On top of that, I also have to mention the great grease drainage system. The grill comes with a special chute that drains grease from the surface straight into the container. This solution prevents food from sitting in grease, and the cleanup after cooking literally takes a moment.
The last downside is lack of any handles which makes it hard to transport from one place to another when it’s hot.
3. Weber Q1200
If what you want is the easiest possible temperature control and convenience, this grill is going to be a great choice. Once you start the burner, it only takes a moment to reach an adequate temperature for cooking.
Weber Q1200 is perfect for small spaces (apartment balconies or patios) and great for traveling.
I have to admit that it is a very solidly made, one of the most stable tabletop grills.
Together with the separately sold stand (Q Portable Cart) it can easily serve as a small-sized stationary grill.
Hidden under the lid are 189 square inches of cooking area, if it’s not enough, check out the slightly bigger Q2200 version.
A very strong burner made of stainless steel and high quality porcelain grill grates guarantee great results of grilling. It is possible to separately buy a griddle, which will expand your cooking possibilities.
It can reach very high temperatures which makes it phenomenal for hot and fast grilling of wieners, hamburgers or steaks, creating distinct sear marks on the surface (see the video)
Solid side shelves provide a lot of work area, and when folded, they are solid enough to be used as handles.
You don’t have to worry about cleaning either, because all of the grease goes through a hole in the middle of the grill onto a special aluminum tray that you can quickly and easily remove on the side.
I appreciate the high quality of workmanship and I know that it’s a very durable grill, which is why I especially recommend it if you plan to often cook away from home. The Q series from Weber occupies very high positions in all rankings.
It’s a perfect solution if you’re looking for a solid, versatile and very fast grill. Of course it costs the most out of all tabletop grills but quality and functionality are things that are never cheap.
The next tabletop grill offers a whole lot of space while also being suitable for small spaces and convenient transport. The construction was designed with convenient cooking and the highest possible capacity in mind.
Cuisinart CGG-200 offers 240 square inches of cooking area, it is one of the biggest tabletop grills.
You can easily prepare enough food for a family of few.
It comes with two extendable side shelves that provide some work area and solid handles that make it easy to carry. Solutions of this type are useful when cooking away from home where there aren’t any tables etc.
On top of that, the entire construction is pretty solid and stable, and its shape makes it more convenient to transport.
I wish it had a lid lock and foldable legs – those are very useful features during transportation. On top of that, one burner makes it impossible to create different heat zones.
It’s a decent option but in many regards it is very lacking compared to competitive tabletop grills available at similar prices (mobility, functionality and quality of workmanship).
Personally, I prefer brands that only specialize in manufacturing grills so that I can know that they have a huge experience on the topic.
Tips for buying a new tabletop grill
Don’t know where to start? First and foremost, read my tips. Once you get familiar with my tips, it will be easier for you to pick the right type of table top grill depending on your situation.
Budget – Determine how much you are capable of spending on a new tabletop grill. Charcoal options are among the cheapest, whereas propane fueled versions are going to cost as much as several times more.
Type of fuel – Everyone has their preferences regarding flavor and cooking style. Decide which type of fuel is the best for you, taking all pros and cons into account.
Temperature control – The best option is the propane versions where all you have to do is start the burner and adjust it adequately to maintain your desired temperature. Charcoal, unfortunately, requires much more effort, in a grill this small the greatest role is played by the amount of fuel used, and then air vent adjustment (if there are any).
Size and weight – It applies to all types of tabletop grills. Think carefully where you are going to cook and if the weight and size make a difference. If you want to bring the grill along on a trip, you certainly need to take this aspect into account.
Lid lock – If you have ever brought a grill without a lid lock away from home, you know how important it is. A loose grill lid guarantees problems during transportation, doesn’t matter if it’s on foot or by car.
Handles – They enable you to conveniently carry the grill along and move it around when cooking. Not all small grills come with handles, which makes it a problem when you suddenly have to move a hot grill to a different spot.
Warranty – It is a certain clue for you about how the manufacturer themselves rates their product. Although it’s not always the case, in most cases a short warranty period means poor quality of workmanship in a grill. In this situation it’s the best to go for brands renowned in the world of BBQ, which offer better warranties and overall quality ( like Weber or Blackstone in this situation ).
Never use a Tabletop Grill on a plastic table
Every regular grill comes with a proper stand that separates the hot construction from the surface. As you can see, it’s not just about the comfort of cooking, but also about safety.
A tabletop grill requires the right type of surface so that you can start cooking safely.
Most tabletop grills don’t come with long enough legs or stands to separate them from the surface. A grill’s construction can therefore get very hot when cooking, and the accumulated heat may cause problems.
For that reason, YOU CAN’T use a tabletop grill on flammable surfaces, such as plastic. Most plastics are very vulnerable to heat, which causes them to start melting and creates even greater risk of starting fire.
This type of grill is best to be used on tables that will certainly not be affected by the temperature reached when cooking. A great option is a metal table, which such temperatures certainly have no effect on.
It’s also a good idea to consider buying special mats for under the grill that will protect the surface not only from temperature but also hot grease, food remains or burning charcoal.