Many people confuse between tabletop grills and portable barbeque grills. In reality, the two are not exactly the same. There is a slight difference in both design and cooking performance.
As with portable grills, you have the option of choosing either a tabletop gas grill, charcoal or electric model. Each has its own strength and weaknesses.
What make tabletop grills different are their super small size and light weight design, perfect for tailgating and regular outdoor camping trips.
The drawback to these types of grills are their cooking power. Low end models sold under $50 might not be able to properly sear even small size steaks, chicken fillets or other thick slices of meat. Though these units are usually light enough to carry on one hand – and that’s what they are sold for.
Which Type of Table Top Grill is Best to Buy?
Tabletop gas grill is the most popular amongst three available fuel types. With charcoal grills you have to prepare the coals and spend time lighting them up – which is not very easy and can be frustrating at times (e.g. wet rainy weather). This problem is eliminated by using light propane gas tanks. However, charcoal cookers grill meat with smoked flavor that can not be duplicated by any other types of grills.
On the other hand, electric tabletop grill does not require initial ignition, but you need to find a source for electricity supply, which restricts it to most indoor kitchen use. But electric models have their advantages – simple and easy cleaning.
So it all depends on your own circumstance to decide which fuel type to go for. Below you’ll find three grill reviews, two gas types and one electric.
Weber Go-Anywhere Tabletop Gas Grill
As the name implies, this is one of the most portable tabletop grills Weber has to offer. It has also received many positive reviews for good balance between small size, budget price and overall a good barbeque cooker.
- Ideal size for most road trips or outdoor camping
- Has Weber’s Flavorizer that replaces traditional lava rocks
- Comes with heavy-duty plated steel cooking grate to properly sear bbq
- Solid construction with lid hangers that keeps the lid closed even in windy weather
- One gas burner enough to cook for 2-4 people
- Dimension: 23.8″ x 12.4″ x 8.9″ – 14.4 pounds
- Small grilling surface of only 160 sq. inches
Coleman 9940-A55 Roadtrip Party Grill
For under $50, This tabletop gas grill is an excellent choice for tailgate parties and frequent on the road travels for its super compact size and light weight build.
- Cheap and good performance for the prize
- Very light and compact dimension with foldable legs
- Can also be used as a water boiler
- Has small flat section for use as a griddle – to cook breakfast eggs, bacons or thin slices of meat
- Most of Coleman party grill parts are dishwasher-safe
- Simple push-button ignition with Coleman’s Instastart system
- Dimension: 12.8″ x 12.8″ x 11.5″ – 4 pounds
- Uneven heating – more hot at the center of the grill and less toward the edges
Meco 9300 Deluxe Electric Tabletop Grill
Getting close to $200, Meco electric tabletop grill is different from many portable electric grills in the market, because it uses infrared technology to cook barbecue. (You can read more about infrared gas grills here)
- Efficient and super fast heating with infrared burner at 1,670 watt
- Even temperature distribution across the whole cooking surface of 200 square inches
- Sensitive heat control with variable temperature knob that responses to changes almost instantly
- Has cool dual-level mode control that allows you to cook barbecue at different temperatures. Example: keeping bread or toasts warm on one side, while grilling thick chops, whole chicken, or beef steaks on the other side
- Dimension: 28.5″ x 17.6″ x 15.9″
- Not powerful enough for big size barbeque steaks