Gas vs Charcoal Grills

Since summertime is quickly approaching, I thought I would make a post on one of the most commonly asked questions in the grilling community… should I get a gas grill or charcoal grill?

While there are a bunch of people who claim that gas is the best, there are also a seemingly equal amount of people who claim charcoal is the best so it can be confusing when you are trying to select one for your home. The question you should really be asking yourself is "which one is right for my needs?"

The Convenience of Grilling Over Gas

Many people who love gas grills mainly love them so much because of the way it makes cooking easy. Let’s put it this way… you come home from a long day at work and decide to grill up a steak for dinner. If you are anything like me, you will want to just eat the steak raw (don’t try this at home) as opposed to firing up the charcoal grill and waiting for it to warm up.

With a gas grill you can cook that steak in less time since you only have to push a button and wait about 10 minutes or so for it to be hot enough to sear you steak. This is the main advantage of cooking with gas and one that you should really think about when deciding which grill to buy. Some people claim that the best food (steaks, foul, potatoes) taste best when grilled over charcoal which leads me to the next point…

Doesn’t Food Taste Better When Grilled Over Charcoal?

This really depends on who you ask, but I am convinced that it really doesn’t matter as much as people think. The main thing about grilling over charcoal is the smoky flavor it gives your food… however, when charcoal is heated up to the proper temperature it really does not smoke at all.

Aside from the smoke caused by the grease from the food dripping on the coals, there is not too much charcoal smoke penetrating the food. When the smoke gets into the meat and you let it sit there a few hours on low heat, then you really taste the smoky goodness. That is called smoking and is a different story for a different day…

Anyway, many people like the way a steakhouses will cook their steaks and you might even think that they are using charcoal back there, but more often than not they are grilling over gas which may come as a shock to you depending on what you know about grilling.

As gas is easier to control and they are cooking mass amounts of food, for them it only makes sense to use it which means that even if you opt for a gas grill for your home, you can still get some great steakhouse flavor out of it.

Don’t Gas Grills Take Up More Space Then Charcoal Grills?

They sometimes do because you have to have room for the propane tank and other accessories as well. Many gas grills have a cart with side tables that the grill sits on while a regular old charcoal grill is mostly just a kettle style that does not take up much room. Both gas and charcoal grills come in a couple of different sizes so it is not that hard to find one that is the size you need regardless of which one you go for.

Which One Is Right For You?

So which one should you get? It really depends on your needs and you willingness to commit to your dinner. If you opt for a charcoal grill you will have to keep a bag of coals (or two) on hand at all times which I can tell you from experience can be a bit of a drag.

On the other hand if you go out and get a gas grill then you will be paying high prices for propane which can also be a bummer. There really is no happy medium and if you are thinking about getting the right one for your home you may just want to go with the one that you think would be easy for you to use and would also be the least expensive as well.

Either way you can still take a look around this site and see if you can find the grill that is right for you. We have taken the time to review some of the best grills out there so you should have no trouble finding one that is right for you.