Weber One-Touch Silver
Weber One-Touch Silver

Budget charcoal grill

Reviewers pick the Weber One-Touch Silver kettle grill as the best budget charcoal grill thanks to its proven design, efficient heating and convenient cleaning system. Move the lever that controls the lower vent back and forth, and ashes are directed into a removable tray for easy cleanup. This feature, as well as the 10-year warranty on the exterior (one year for the grates) and 24-hour customer service, helps make the Weber One-Touch Silver very user-friendly. It comes in two sizes: 22.5 inches in diameter (*Est. $90) and 18.5 inches (*Est. $80).
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Weber Performer
Weber Performer

Best charcoal grill overall

The Weber Performer charcoal grill draws high praise from experts and users alike. The Performer combines the functional details and excellent customer service you'll find on most Weber grills with add-on features such as a worktable, built-in thermometer, lid catcher and storage areas. Reviewers are very impressed with the Weber Performer's most unusual feature, a gas ignition system, although a few users complain that they couldn't get it to work. The Weber Performer is available in one size only -- 22.5 inches in diameter -- but you can choose from three different exterior colors. If all you need is a simple kettle grill, the Weber One-Touch Silver (*Est. $80 to $90) comes in a 22.5-inch size too, although it lacks the Weber Performer's cart and gas ignition.
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Char-Griller Outlaw
Char-Griller Outlaw

Barrel-style charcoal grill

Barrel-style charcoal grills are ideal for cooking large amounts of food at one time; the Char-Griller Outlaw's 1,000-square-inch cooking surface is plenty large enough to grill for a family gathering or backyard party. A few users say this grill rusts or that parts arrive damaged, but most praise the Char-Griller Outlaw for its cooking power and sturdy, powder-coated steel construction. The Outlaw also comes with a number of accessories, including multiple shelves, a wooden worktable, a warming rack and a thermometer. An optional side firebox is available if you'd like to use your Outlaw as a smoker. A grill this big may be unwieldy for cooking smaller portions; the Weber Performer (*Est. $325) is significantly smaller but still offers plenty of room for grilling a big meal.
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Weber Smokey Joe Silver
Weber Smokey Joe Silver

Portable charcoal grill

Most compact tailgating and camping grills draw mixed reviews, but the Weber Smokey Joe Silver (*Est. $30) gets more consistent feedback than most. With a 14.5-inch-diameter cooking space, the Smokey Joe is large enough to grill for a small group. Its short legs offer plenty of support, provided the grill is on a level surface. Like the Weber One-Touch, this portable Weber charcoal grill is backed by a 10-year warranty on the exterior and a one-year warranty on the grates. The Smokey Joe Silver has a small ash pan positioned beneath the kettle, although this doesn't draw much attention from reviewers; they're more interested in the Silver model's airflow, which both experts and users alike say is superior to the airflow you get in the otherwise well-reviewed Weber Smokey Joe Gold (*Est. $35).
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Big Green Egg (large)
Big Green Egg (large)

Grill/smoker

This Kamado-style grill and smoker isn't the biggest on the market, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in versatility and temperature control. Its sealed ceramic chamber can cook at an incredibly high heat or maintain low temperatures for long periods without needing new coals. This gives grillers the option to sear or slow-cook meats. Big Green Egg's exterior stays cool even when grilling at temperatures as high as 750 degrees Fahrenheit. Critics say it can be fragile, however, and the Big Green Egg Company only offers its lifetime warranty for grills purchased from licensed dealers (not online). You can buy Big Green Egg in four other sizes -- mini, small, medium and extra large -- with costs that range from around $250 to over $1,000. Some reviewers are put off by the fact that all of Big Green Egg accessories are sold separately; this can add considerably to the grill's final price. If you just want a simple kettle grill that performs well, the Weber Performer (*Est. $325) gets great reviews.
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*Est. $750 Estimated Price
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See a side-by-side comparison of key features, product specs, and prices.

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