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Best Small Grills for Apartments, Balconies, Patios and Rooftops

These small and compact grills ensure that just because you live in a small apartment, doesn't mean you can't enjoy authentic grilling in your yard or on your balcony … Even if you live in a strict fire control area!

Mark Jenner profile picture
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Last Updated: February 23, 2024

A couple of burgers and corn being grilled on a small grill on a balcony.

If you’re looking for a compact grill to suit your apartment’s balcony, small patio, or rooftop, look no further. This guide to the best small grills is your ultimate guide for finding a grill that will fit into your smaller space and exceed your cooking expectations.

We’ve researched and tested dozens of small grills to see which are the best, and we present our test findings, ratings, and final verdicts below. We looked at key factors such as cooking space, overall performance, durability, and portability. We give our in-depth results and thoughtful verdicts from testing both tabletop and freestanding units.

We found the Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS leads the pack for a gas grill and the Napoleon PRO22 for a charcoal grill. However, the perfect grill for you will vary by your individual needs, and we review and recommend numerous other models to suit those different needs.

The end goal is to get you grilling in your small(er) space as soon and enjoyably as possible.

Note: Clicking the above links will take you to further information, current prices and customer reviews on Amazon and select other retailers.

Ok, let’s get into the meat of the article.

Why Trust Us

Having owned and used all but one of the grills recommended in this guide, I have practical experience that helps me understand the nuances that make each model unique. I have spent countless hours cooking on and testing each model so that I can give an opinion of my firsthand experience with each product.

Also, my background in BBQ and grilling since 2005 enriches my reviews with a depth of expertise and practical knowledge that can only come from nearly two decades of experience.

However, I don’t just rely on my experience; I also engage in thorough research, including reading others’ professional opinions and real user feedback from other owners, to provide a comprehensive and well-rounded view.

I also like to think that my history of writing impartial reviews on this site since 2017 speaks to my dedication to transparency, too, with no connection or loyalty to any particular brands or manufacturers, meaning you can trust my advice when choosing the best small grill for your space.

Comparison Table

Our comparison table breaks down the essentials on the best small grills, making it easier to find your best match.

You can click and drag to scroll horizontally, use your mouse wheel or trackpad to scroll in any direction, and use the horizontal slider at the bottom.

Best Overall
Weber Spirit EPX-325S gas grill on a a patio, shot from the side.
Best Small Charcoal Grill
napoleon pro22 on wooden deck.
Runner-Up Gas Grill
Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner isolated on white.
Runner-Up Charcoal Grill
weber original kettle 22
Most Versatile
Ninja Woodfire from the front, sat on a metal table.
Best for Camping
Weber Go-Anywhere charcoal grill isolated on white.
Best Small Kamado
A Kamado Joe jr in its stand, on a wooden floor.
Best Small Grill on Wheels
The Weber Traveler gas grill on grass with the lid open.
Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS
Napoleon 22 Inch Pro
Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner
Weber Original Kettle 22 Inch
Ninja Woodfire
Weber Go Anywhere Charcoal
Kamado Joe Jr Charcoal Grill
Weber Traveler
Our Rating (0 – 10)
Our Rating
Fuel Type
Fuel Type
Liquid Propane Gas
Liquid Propane Gas
Electric (Uses wood pellets for flavor)
No. Of Burners
No. Of Burners
3 + Sear Station


Ignition Type
Ignition Type
Automatic (battery driven)
Push-button piezo ignition
Automatic (Electric ignition for wood pellets)
Push-button piezo ignition
Overall Dimensions
Overall Dimensions
160 cm (H) x 126 cm (W) x 81 cm (D) (lid open)
101.50 cm | 161 cm lid open (H), 58.50 cm (W), 72.50 cm (D)
110.5 cm (H) x 115.8 cm (W) x 61.2 cm (D)
106.68 cm (H) x 60.96 cm (W) x 74.93 cm (D)
33.83 cm (H) x 47.19 cm (W) x 60 cm (D)
38.1 cm (H) x 49.5 cm (W) x 29.2 cm (D)
69.85 cm (H) x 50.8 cm (W) x 50.8 cm (D)
94.488 cm (H) x 110.744 cm (W) x 58.42 cm (D)
Cooking Surface Area
Cooking Surface Area
2745 cm2 main grate, 672 cm2 warming rack
2,356 cm2 / 57 cm (diameter)
1804 cm2
2342 cm2
910 cm2
1032 cm2
967.74 cm2
2065 cm2
62 lbs
37.5 lbs
32.3 lbs
30.62 lbs
12 lbs
68 lbs
49 lbs
2 swivel casters and 2 locking casters
4 legs, 2 with wheels
4 legs, 2 with wheels
3 legs, 2 wheels.
Lightweight, sit on a tabletop or any surface.
Fold-up legs, lid locks for carrying
Portable with handles (but heavy: 2 to carry.)
Folds into its own cart with two wheels.
Cooking Grate Type
Cooking Grate Type
Porcelain-enameled, cast-iron
Porcelain Coated Cast Iron
Porcelain-coated wire
Durable plated steel
Cast aluminum non-stick.
Plated steel
Stainless steel, hinged
Porcelain-enameled, cast-iron
Built in Thermometer
Built in Thermometer

Available Accessories
Available Accessories
Gourmet BBQ System, sear grate insert
Cover, Large Grease Drip Trays, Heavy Duty Rotisserie
Cover, Rapidfire Chimney Starter, Lighter Cubes, Char-Baskets, Charcoal Rake, 3 pc Premium Tool Set, Premium Gloves
Crisper basket, disposable grease tray liner, wood pellets, cover, roasting lifters, stand, griddle plate,
Charcoal chimney starter, lighter cubes, tool set.
Grill gripper, ash tool, ceramic heat deflector
Cargo protector, drip pans, reversible prep & serve board, griddle. cover, grilling tools, cutting board with catch bin.
Length of Warranty
Length of Warranty
Cookbox, lid and burners 10 years. Grates 5 years. Flavorizer bars 2 years. Electronics 3 years. All remaining parts 2 years.
10 Year Limited
Burners: 5 years, Firebox: 2 years, Other parts: 1 year
10 year limited warranty
1 Year VIP Limited Warranty
10-year rust, handle 5-year, all else 2-year.
Limited lifetime warranty on ceramic parts, 5-year warranty on metal parts, 3-year warranty on heat deflector.
Cookbox & lid assembly 5 years, grates 3 years, all remaining parts 2 years
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for real-time monitoring on your phone

Maximum temperature
Maximum temperature
550 °F
700 °F+
500 °F
700 °F+
500 °F (Depending on cooking mode.)
700 °F+
750 °F+
550 °F
Ease of Cleaning
Ease of Cleaning
Grease management, drip pan, harder to clean diamond shaped grill insert.
Removable steel ash catcher, easy access hinged cooking grids
Porcelain-coated grates for easy cleaning: No grease management.
One-Touch cleaning system for easy ash cleanup, porcelain-enameled lid and bowl
Disposable grease tray liner, easily removable parts for handwashing.
Small and easy to clean with removable cooking and fire grates.
Ash tool to scrape out from lower vent; Run high heat cycle to self clean.
Grease management, removable drip tray, removable grates for hand-washing.
Innovative Features
Innovative Features
Smart thermometer with Wi-Fi; Dedicated Sear Burner; Gourmet BBQ System (GBS), External Gas Canister Storage.
Hinged WAVE™ cooking grids; Three cooking heights; PRO Air Control system; SS heat diffuser; Offset hinged lid; Steel ash catcher, ACCU-PROBE temperature gauge.
One-Touch cleaning system; Porcelain-enameled lid and bowl; Lid hook; Dampers for temperature control; Heat shield for handle.
7 Cooking Functions (Grill, Smoker, Roast, Bake, Dehydrate, Air Crisp, and Broil); Easy clean grill grates; Crisper basket
Lid locks for portability; Legs pivot to lock grill in place; Porcelain-enameled lid and base; Heavy-duty fuel grate
Cast iron stand; Stainless steel hinged cooking grate; Thick-walled, heat-resistant shell; Cast-iron air vent; Grill gripper and ash tools.
Compact fold for easy storage and transport; Large grilling area; Low-to-high temp range; Grill attached to cart.
Where to Buy?

The Best Small Grills for Apartments, Small Patios and Rooftops

With so many small and portable grills available and people having different wants and needs, it’s difficult to determine a single best. As such, we have split our picks into many unique categories, such as best overall, best gas, charcoal, camping, kamado, and more. There should be something here for everyone.

1. Best Overall — Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 10.0
Ease of Use 9.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 9.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 9.0
Value for Money 8.0


  • Weber build quality ensures durability.
  • High-heat searing is excellent with the sear burner.
  • Built-in thermometer for easy cooking.
  • Gourmet BBQ System for added flexibility.
  • Enclosed storage for keeping supplies. hidden away
  • Condiment rack for convenience.
  • Extra workspace with two side shelves and tool hooks.
  • Easy to move with four casters, two lockable.


  • Requires 6 D-cell batteries, which seems excessive.
  • Small casters falter on rough terrain.
  • Complicated tank shield assembly.
  • High cost may deter budget buyers.
  • Cleaning the main grate is difficult due to its diamond shaped design.

Our Review

The Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS Smart Barbecue is a high-tech gas grill with three main burners with a total power of 9.38 kW and an additional Sear Station burner of 2.2 kW. Featuring integrated smart technology for real-time food temperature monitoring and readiness countdowns on both your phone and the grill. It alerts you when food reaches your desired doneness, ensuring perfectly cooked meals every time. The grill includes a Gourmet BBQ System with porcelain-enameled, cast-iron cooking grates and a sear grate insert for added versatility.

After spending some quality time with the Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS, I gave it the title of  ‘Best Overall Small Grill.’ This is because it has a unique blend of smart technology and grilling prowess.

I found the built-in smart thermometer and Wi-Fi connectivity, which links up to the Weber Connect app, excellent features, allowing for an unprecedented level of control and monitoring from afar. Adding a dedicated sear burner and the versatility of the Gourmet BBQ System open up a world of cooking possibilities that are hard to explore with less rich-featured grills.

Despite its premium price tag and a few quirks, like the need for six D-cell batteries for the thermometer and the somewhat flimsy casters, I’ve found the overall build quality and performance to justify the investment. The grill’s solid construction and user-friendly features have proved reliable for both quick weeknight dinners and more adventurous weekend grilling sessions.

The ease of maintaining consistent temperatures and the real-time feedback via the smart system has particularly impressed me.

I won’t gloss over the minor inconveniences, though. The small casters have sometimes made moving the grill a hassle on my uneven patio, and getting used to having to light burner one first and then others from this took a few goes. However, these are small trade-offs for the overall quality and versatility of the grill.

The cleaning process, while mostly straightforward thanks to the grease management system, does have its challenges, especially cleaning the diamond-patterned grate over the sear station. Yet, these aspects haven’t taken away from my overall satisfaction.

Wrapping up, the Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS is a top choice for those who, like me, are serious about their grilling. Its smart features, robust build, and versatile cooking options offer a compelling reason to splurge on what at first seems an expensive grill. While the price and additional costs for accessories might give some pause, for avid grillers who value technology and performance and who want the best, this grill is a worthwhile investment.

You can learn a lot more in out in-depth review: Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS Review.


  • Main burners: kW: 9.38
  • Sear Station burner: kW: 2.2
  • Dimensions – Lid Open: 160 cm H x 126 cm W x 81 cm D
  • Dimensions – Lid Closed: 116 cm H x 126 cm W x 61 cm D
  • Primary cooking area: 2745 cm2 (61 cm x 45 cm)
  • Warming rack area: 672 cm2 (56 cm x 12 cm)
  • Total cooking area: 3417 cm2
  • Weight (kg): 55.8
  • Stainless Steel Burners: 3
  • Fuel type: Liquid propane gas

What Others Say

The Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS Smart Grill review on (translated from German) is overwhelmingly positive. It highlights the grill’s smart features, including WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, allowing precise, wireless temperature monitoring through a mobile app. They praise the grill’s construction for its clean workmanship and the powerful, enameled cast iron grate that heats up quickly and retains heat well.

However, the review notes the grill’s high price and significant weight as downsides. It also mentions a desire for more features, such as a side burner or ceramic burner, given the price.

Despite these minor criticisms, the overall sentiment is that the Weber Spirit EPX-325S GBS is a top-performing smart grill, albeit with a premium price tag.

2. Best Small Charcoal Grill — Napoleon 22 Inch Pro Charcoal Kettle Grill

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 10.0
Ease of Use 9.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 9.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 8.0
Value for Money 9.0


  • Exceptional build quality
  • Grate height adjusts for easy temperature control.
  • Precise temperature control with improved vent system.
  • Hinged grate for simple charcoal or wood addition.
  • Offset hinged lid prevents damage and burns.
  • Heat diffuser ensures even charcoal burning. and heat distribution
  • Cast iron grates for superior searing and item retention.
  • Large ash catcher for easy cleaning.
  • Durable enamel steel body for long life.


  • No tool hooks for utensils.
  • Wave shaped grates more challenging to clean.
  • Cart is a little bit wobbly, which is unexpected.
  • Price higher than basic models.

Our Review

The Napoleon 22 Pro Charcoal Kettle Grill is a high-quality, versatile charcoal grill known for its superior heat distribution, robust build, and user-friendly design. Key features include an adjustable grate height for temperature control, a hinged lid for safety, WAVE-shaped cast iron grids for distinctive grill marks, a stainless steel heat deflector for even cooking, and a large ash catcher for easy cleanup. Its durable enamel steel body ensures longevity.

After spending two years with the Napoleon PRO22 charcoal grill, it’s become my favorite kettle-style charcoal grill, even over the two Webers I own. Its key features for me have been the adjustable grate system and top-notch temperature control, allowing for a versatile cooking experience that’s hard to beat. This grill isn’t just about looks; its durability and build quality mean it’s a companion for the long haul, despite a few quirks like the lack of tool hooks and a stand that’s less stable than I’d like.

The PRO22 is the grill I turn to whenever I aim for an out and out grilling session or a quick sear, though it performs brilliantly for a slow roast or smoking session, too, it’s just I have other dedicated smokers for those tasks. Its user-friendly design and the ACCU-PROBE™ temperature gauge help to keep you in control of the cook. Sure, it’s missing some niceties like side tables and could be easier to move around, but it’s hard to beat when it comes down to pure grilling performance.

I won’t sugarcoat it—the unique Wave grates are a pain to clean compared to standard parallel bar grates, and getting the airflow just right for the perfect temperature will be tricky for beginners. But the results are worth the effort once you get the hang of it. These results have solidified the PRO22’s place in my grilling arsenal, even when stacked against other leading grills on the market.

In essence, the Napoleon PRO22 has proven itself to be an invaluable tool. Its combination of durability, versatility, and quality makes it a top choice, especially for those of us who cherish the depth of flavor that only charcoal grilling can offer.

Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been grilling for years, the PRO22 is a grill that grows with you, offering a range of options that keep cooking outdoors exciting and rewarding.

Check out our full review for further details: Napoleon PRO22 charcoal grill review.


  • Warranty: 10 year limited
  • Fuel type: Charcoal
  • Main cooking area: 57 cm (diameter) | 22 burgers
  • Total cooking area: 2,356 cm²
  • Rotisserie included: Optional
  • Side burner included: No.
  • Dimensions: 101.50 cm H | 161 cm H with lid open, 58.50 cm W, 72.50 cm D

What Others Say

At the time of writing, it scores well in the customer satisfaction stakes, with the following overall feedback at some major online stores:

  • 4.7/5 from 28 reviews.
  • 4.6/7 from 34 reviews.

The Napoleon PRO22 charcoal grill receives an outstanding review at HomesAndGardens, emphasizing its spacious cooking area, high-quality construction, and ability to maintain high temperatures over long periods. Its cooking grids, made from porcelain-enameled cast iron, are praised for their longevity and efficiency. Despite its premium price tag, the grill’s exceptional features, like adjustable airflow and robust build, are highly recommended for those in the market for a superior charcoal grill. Some minor drawbacks mentioned include challenges in assembly and managing the charcoal, but the review concludes that the grill’s high performance and build quality make it a worthwhile investment.

3. Runner-Up Gas Grill — Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner Gas Grill

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 8.0
Ease of Use 7.5
Build Quality 7.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 7.5
Cleaning and Maintenance 8.0
Value for Money 9.0


  • Great value for the price.
  • High heat output for quick and convenient grilling.
  • Easy to maintain and keep clean.
  • Ample cooking space for a couple or small family.
  • Side shelves are great for a work space and to hold tools / sauces / rubs.


  • No built-in thermometer, so will need to purchase one 3rd party.
  • Some users complained of complicated assembly
  • May only last a few seasons (you get what you pay for)

Our Review

The Char-Broil Classic Series™ 2-Burner Gas Grill is a compact, mobile propane grill designed for limited spaces, featuring 20,000 BTUs of cooking power, in-line stainless steel burners for even heat, and a 280 porcelain-coated cooking grate to prevent sticking. It includes piezo ignition for reliable startups, two metal side shelves for tools and spices, and a durable porcelain-coated steel lid and firebox.

The Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner Gas Grill shines as the ideal choice if you value the essentials of grilling without the need for extra bells and whistles. With its dual burners providing 20,000 BTUs, you can easily manage different cooking temperatures, making it versatile enough for both novices and experienced grillers. The push-button ignition and easy-to-clean surfaces add to its appeal for those who prioritize convenience and affordability.

Despite its simplicity, the Char-Broil Classic 280 doesn’t compromise on performance. It offers a generous 280 square inches of cooking area, perfect for small gatherings, and side shelves for prep work. However, the lack of a built-in thermometer and warming rack might limit some grilling techniques. Thanks to a lightweight design and wheels, its portability enhances its attractiveness for those with limited space.

The grill’s lighter construction and the absence of a thermometer are minor drawbacks compared to its overall value, especially at its price point. It’s well-suited for casual grillers who focus on straightforward grilling and appreciate ease of use.

Your final takeaway should be that the Char-Broil Classic 280 is a top pick for anyone seeking an affordable, effective small grill. It stands out for quick heating, sufficient cooking space for small groups, and hassle-free maintenance. While it may not meet the demands of advanced grillers looking for comprehensive features, its performance and value position it as an excellent option for those starting out or prioritizing simplicity in their grill.


  • Burner Warranty Term (Years): 5
  • Grate/Emitter Warranty Term (Years): 1
  • Lid/Firebox Warranty Term (Years): 2
  • Other Parts Warranty Term (Years): 1
  • Grate Material: Porcelain Coated Wire
  • Cooking Grate Material: Porcelain Coated Wire
  • Burner Material: Stainless Steel
  • Heat Tent Material: Porcelain Coated Steel
  • Side Shelf Material: Black Painted Steel

What Others Say

At the time of writing, this is the customer feedback at a handful of online retailers:

  • 3.6/5 from 75 reviews
  • 4.1/5 from 205 reviews
  • 3.8/5 from 158 reviews

These scores seem low, but you have to remember these are for a low-priced grill, and people tend to compare against higher priced and higher quality equipment.

4. Runner-Up Charcoal Grill — Weber Original Kettle 22 Inch Charcoal Grill

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 9.0
Ease of Use 8.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 8.5
Cleaning and Maintenance 9.0
Value for Money 10.0


  • Highly versatile for grilling, searing, smoking, and roasting.
  • Proven, classic design loved by many.
  • Made from quality materials, well-constructed.
  • Large grate space for big meals or groups.
  • Ash removal system and catcher simplify cleaning.
  • Convenient lid hook to avoid placing the hot lid on the ground.
  • Easy to adjust temperature with vents.
  • Affordable


  • Poorly placed thermometer, not near vent.
  • Low-quality, small wheels.
  • Lacks a useful side shelf.

Our Review

The Weber 22” Original Kettle Charcoal Grill is a classic backyard grill featuring a porcelain-enameled finish, an aluminum ash catcher, and One-Touch cleaning system. It’s designed for durability and ease of use, with a heat-retaining construction and adjustable dampers for temperature control.

After years of grilling, I’ve come to appreciate what makes a grill more than just a tool but a partner in the art of barbecue. And the Weber Kettle range definitely qualifies! My experience with this grill stretches back over 20 years, and I love its versatility and durability. It’s not just good; it’s a classic that stands the test of time. Whether I’m searing steaks or going low and slow, the Weber Kettle handles it all with ease. Thanks to the well-designed vents, its ample cooking space and effective temperature control, it’s a highly effective and versatile tool for anyone serious about grilling.

I’ve grilled on many models over the years, but the Weber Kettle’s one-touch ash removal and durable construction always bring me back. Sure, it could use a better thermometer and sturdier wheels, and I wouldn’t mind a side shelf. But these are minor gripes in the grand scheme of things. Its affordability and the quality of the meals it produces make these issues seem small.

What sets the Weber Kettle apart for me is its straightforward design that caters to both beginners and veterans. You can do everything on it, making it the Swiss army knife of outdoor cookers at a very reasonable price. You can grill, sear, smoke, roast…do it all!

Its portability is a boon for those with limited space, yet it doesn’t skimp on the cooking area. Moving it around is a breeze, although I do wish the wheels were a bit more robust.

Reflecting on my time with the Weber Original Kettle, it’s clear why it’s a staple in my and many people’s grilling repertoire. It’s a grill that offers simplicity, efficiency, and results that please.

Despite the evolution of grills with more bells and whistles — and the fact I do prefer the Napoleon PRO22 reviewed above — the Weber Kettle remains a solid, reliable choice that offers excellent value. It’s a testament to the idea that the classics are sometimes the best.

Check out our in depth review if you’d like to learn more: Weber Original 22-inch Charcoal Grill review.


  • Dimensions – Lid Closed (inches): 39.5″H x 22.5″W x 25″D
  • Diameter (inches): 22
  • Primary cooking area (square inches): 363
  • Total cooking area (square inches): 363
  • Fuel type: Charcoal
  • Glass-reinforced nylon handles: 2
  • Cooking grate type: Plated steel cooking grate
  • Durable all-weather wheels: 2
  • Rust-resistant aluminum dampers: 1

What Others Say

At the time of writing, customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive at major online stores:

  • Rating: 4.7/5 from 2,176 reviews.
  •  Rating: 4.7/5 from‎ 2,684 reviews.
  • 4.7/5 from 6,793 reviews.

The Weber Original Kettle 22-inch Charcoal Grill review on is very favorable, praising its classic appeal and versatility for various cooking methods. They recommended it for both novices and experienced grillers for its simple yet effective design. The review appreciates its straightforward use, excellent cooking capabilities without needing extras, and durability. They note it supports a range of cooking techniques like grilling, dual heat zone roasting, and slow smoking. Its robust construction earned it the Gold Medal, indicating a high rating in its price category and a strong recommendation to buy.

5. Most Versatile — Ninja Woodfire

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 9.0
Ease of Use 9.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 8.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 9.0
Smoking Efficiency and Flavor 8.0
Value for Money 9.0


  • Very easy and intuitive controls.
  • Adds real wood smoke flavor.
  • 7 versatile cooking modes.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Accurate temperature control.
  • Compact and portable for small spaces.
  • Runs on electricity, so no need for propane or charcoal.
  • Smoked then air fried wings are some of the best I’ve ever had!


  • Limited by small grill size.
  • Requires electricity to operate, limiting where it can be used.
  • Grease tray access could be improved.
  • Pellets may not always ignite on the first try.
  • Smoke flavor milder than traditional smokers.

Our Review

The Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Grill is a versatile electric BBQ grill and smoker powered by electricity and flavored with real wood pellets for authentic smoky flavors. They are multi-purpose, allowing grilling, BBQ smoking, and air frying outdoors, adding 100% natural smoky flavors to any dish.

During my time with the Ninja Woodfire, its compactness, and multiple cooking functions made it stand out among most other small grills. Yes, I did have a bit of an issue igniting the pellets at times, and the cooking surface isn’t the largest, but believe me, this grill’s user-friendly nature, portability, and ease of cleaning more than make up for those minor inconveniences.

What made me give it the title of “The Most Versatile” was its range of cooking styles, from grilling and smoking to roasting and baking and even dehydrating. The convenience of these features for a grill of this size is something I’ve never seen before.

Using the Ninja Woodfire is fun, and the results are moist and flavorful. The grill infuses food with a rich smoke taste. But I’ll be honest, it’s not as robust a flavor as you’d get from larger dedicated pellet grills. The compact design impressed me the most, not requiring too much space and being perfect for taking along on camping trips (as long as you have an electricity supply nearby!). And let’s not forget the ease of cleaning. This grill was obviously designed with daily grilling enthusiasts who favor ease of use over anything else in mind.

Compared to other leading grills, the Ninja Woodfire performs well and stands out for its versatility. The trade-off is a less intense smoke flavor than larger grills and a smaller cooking surface. Despite these slight drawbacks, I’m sure anybody would love this grill, particularly those dealing with tighter spaces.

Click here for a more in depth review where we study and test every feature: Ninja Woodfire review.


  • Cord Length: 48 in
  • Voltage: 120V 60hz volts
  • Color: Grey
  • Wattage: 1760 watts
  • Warranty (years): 1 year
  • Product Dimensions: 23.62 in L x 18.58 in W x 13.31 in H
  • Weight: 30.62 lbs

What Others Say

At the time of writing, here are the combined ratings from customers at the biggest online retailers:

  • 4.7 from 453 reviews.
  • 4.8 from 401 reviews.
  • 4.7 from 426 reviews.

Hey Grill, Hey’s review of the Ninja Woodfire praises its versatility, ease of use, and build quality. While positive overall, it notes the smoke flavor isn’t as deep as larger smokers and its small cooking area limits quantity. They recommended it for those with space limitations or regulatory restrictions but not as a full-size smoker replacement.

6. Best for Camping — Weber Go Anywhere Charcoal

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 8.0
Ease of Use 9.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 10.0
Temperature Control and Range 8.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 9.0
Value for Money 9.0


  • Very easy and intuitive controls.
  • Adds real wood smoke flavor.
  • 7 versatile cooking modes.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Accurate temperature control.
  • Compact and portable for small spaces.
  • No need for propane or charcoal.
  • Enables smoked air-fried chicken.


  • Limited by small grill size.
  • Requires electricity to operate, limiting where it can be used.
  • Grease tray access could be improved.
  • Pellets may not always ignite on the first try.
  • Smoke flavor milder than traditional smokers.

Our Review

After spending years now with the Weber Go-Anywhere grill, I truly appreciate it as my go-to grill for camping. Its compact size and lightweight design, as well as it’s shape making it easy to pack into my car, have made it my go-to for authentic charcoal flavor on the go.

Over the years, I’ve grilled everything from steaks to veggies on it and even smoked chicken pieces, chops, and baked whole camembert. It’s never let me down. The shape and size just about allow indirect heat cooking, and the ability to adjust two top and bottom dampers to control the heat and smoke flow through the grill is simply excellent. I do miss having a built-in thermometer to check the heat level, though.

What really sets the Go-Anywhere apart for me is its durability. I’ve accidentally dropped it a couple of times, and it’s held up like a champ, thanks to its sturdy construction. Its insulation also keeps the temperature reasonably consistent, which is crucial for accuracy in grilling and smoking. The wind resistance is another plus, making it reliable even on breezy days, though it does tend to suffer temperature swings in stronger winds…but then, so do pretty much all small grills.

However, after all that praise, it’s not without its flaws. The handles can get pretty hot, and the space under the lid is a bit tight for larger cuts of meat. Also, since there’s no dome temperature probe, I’ve had to rely on my judgment and an external thermometer to ensure the food is cooked just right.

Comparing it to other small grills on the market, like the Weber Jumbo Joe and the Weber Traveler, the Go-Anywhere holds its own with its simplicity and portability. It’s straightforward to clean and performs in all but the windiest conditions. While there are grills with more features out there, for someone who values ease of transport and the authentic taste of charcoal-grilled food, this grill is a solid choice.

Read our review summary below, or follow this link to read our in-depth full review: <<<Link to full review>>>


  • Dimensions – Lid Closed (inches): 15″H x 19.5″W x 11.5″D
  • Primary cooking area (square inches): 160
  • Total cooking area (square inches): 160
  • Fuel type: Charcoal
  • Glass-reinforced nylon handles: 3
  • Cooking grate type: Plated steel cooking grate
  • Rust-resistant aluminum dampers: 4

What Others Say

The combined opinion of thousands of online customers is overwhelmingly positive:

  • 4.6/5 from 318 reviews.
  • 4.7/5 from 447 reviews.
  • 4.6/5 from 354 reviews.

OutdoorGearLab’s review of the Weber Go-Anywhere celebrates its simplicity, efficiency, durability, and affordability for portable grilling. It highlights the ample charcoal bed and sizable grate for easy heat zone adjustments and cooking various foods at different temperatures. The grill’s enameled, cast-iron construction is lauded for quality and insulation, ensuring even and effective cooking.

However, it notes drawbacks such as hot handles and hard-to-adjust vents when the grill is hot.

7. Best Small Kamado — Kamado Joe Jr Charcoal Grill

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 9.0
Ease of Use 8.0
Build Quality 9.0
Size and Portability 8.0
Temperature Control and Range 9.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 8.0
Smoking Efficiency and Flavor 9.0
Value for Money 8.0


  • Mimics full-size kamado in portable unit.
  • Versatile as it grills, smokes, sears, roasts, bakes
  • Excellent build quality, long-lasting
  • Well insulated for steady temperature
  • Fuel efficient, reduces running costs
  • Easy to clean, just brush out ashes
  • Cast iron stand with handles for safety and portability
  • Lifetime warranty on ceramics


  • Somewhat expensive for ceramic grills, but reflects quality
  • Heavy for a portable grill, due to build quality
  • Lacks slide-out ash drawer of larger models
  • Stainless steel grate not as premium expected
  • Requires learning for temperature control
  • Weighs 68 pounds, challenging to move alone
  • Handles need better comfort for carrying

Our Review

The Kamado Joe Jr is a portable ceramic charcoal grill featuring a 13.5-inch cooking space, a cast iron stand, and a thick-walled, heat-resistant shell for precise temperature control. It locks in smoke and moisture, ideal for tailgates, camping, or beach cookouts. It provides quality charcoal grilling on the go.

When I first got the Kamado Joe Jr., I felt like a kid with a new toy. It’s small, but don’t let that fool you. This grill can do more than many bigger ones out there. It’s no surprise it earned a spot on our list of the best small grills.

Simply put, it’s a full-sized Kamado experience squeezed into a portable bit of kit. As someone who loves grilling and smoking but doesn’t always want to fire up one of my larger beasts, I found the Kamado Joe Jr. right up my alley. And for smoking while camping, I cannot think of anything better.

The Kamado Joe Jr. is like a Swiss army knife of portable grills. Maybe it’s the slow-cooked pulled pork you fancy, or perhaps you prefer your steaks perfectly seared. Either way, the Kamado Joe delivers. In my experience, temperature control can be a bit tricky at first, but with practice, I’ve managed to keep it as low as 200°F for slow cooking and as high as 750°F for searing.

Compared to other market leaders in the small grills category, the Kamado Joe Jr. holds its own. Yes, it’s surprisingly heavy for a supposed ‘portable grill’ at 68 pounds, but I have come to terms with the fact that this is down to excellent build materials and allows it to deliver on performance. It’s a give-and-take.

The Kamado Joe Jr. isn’t light on your pocket either, but I assure you, it’s worth every penny. This little giant is fit for a king and comes with a lifetime warranty covering the ceramics, so its value only increases with time.

Despite the minor struggles I’ve experienced while cleaning due to the absence of a slide-out ash drawer, I’ve found the Kamado Joe Jr. an absolute joy to use that produces wonderfully moist and flavorful food. As a seasoned griller, I can sincerely say it’s a must-have if you love grilling and smoking outdoors, in small spaces, or on the move, and simply must have an authentic charcoal and wood smoked flavor.

Click this link if you wish to learn more including test results and an in-depth look at every design feature: Kamado Joe Jr review.


  • Model number: KJ13RH
  • Width: 20 in.
  • Height: 27.5 in.
  • Weight: 77.2 lbs.
  • Temperature Range: 225°F to 750°F
  • Cooking Surface: 13.5 in. Diameter

What Others Say

As this review roundup goes live, here’s the combined feedback from hundreds of customers at some big online stores:

  • 4.6/5 from 258 reviews.
  • 4.6/5 from 332 reviews.
  • 4.8/5 from 202 reviews.

The Kitchen Exile’s review praises the Kamado Joe Jr., highlighting Thérèse’s switch from the Big Green Egg due to its superior airflow, temperature control, and ability to cook various foods perfectly for small groups. It’s well-equipped, offering great value compared to the Big Green Egg. Thérèse only added a kick ash basket for easier cleaning, suggesting the included accessories are ample.

They say grilling is easy and fun, with the grill quickly reaching and maintaining the right temperature. Though there’s a learning curve for temperature management, it excels in both direct and indirect cooking. She highly recommends the Kamado Joe Jr. for efficient, high-quality, small-scale outdoor cooking.

8. Best Small Grill on Wheels — Weber Traveler

Scores Out of 10
Performance and Versatility 8.0
Ease of Use 9.0
Build Quality 10.0
Size and Portability 9.0
Temperature Control and Range 9.0
Cleaning and Maintenance 9.0
Value for Money 8.0


  • Excellent build quality.
  • Cart design opens/closes easily, auto-locks lid.
  • Easy transport with durable wheels.
  • Side table and tool hooks add convenience.
  • Ample searing power.
  • High-quality cast iron grates.
  • Large cooking surface.
  • Simple to clean.


  • Single burner means only one heat zone across the grate.
  • Slow to reach max temperature.
  • Grill non-removable from cart.
  • Low lid height limits tall item cooking.
  • Weber gas bottles may freeze in cold, then deliver no gas.

Our Review

The Weber Traveler is a portable grill for outdoor grilling anywhere. Its compact, foldable design fits easily in a car trunk, making it ideal for camping, tailgating, or picnicking. Features include a large grilling area, efficient gas usage, a wide temperature range, and easy transportability. Available in multiple colors, it supports a full-size fuel tank with an adapter hose.

After spending a few months with the Weber Traveler, I came to appreciate its compact design. It doesn’t cut corners on grilling space and makes traveling with a grill a breeze. Setting it up is a no-brainer, taking less than two minutes from the trunk to firing it up, and its sturdy wheels mean I can move it around easily.

The grill’s single burner, while powerful, has its limits. I’ve missed being able to create different heat zones, which would have been handy for some of my more ambitious meal plans. And I learned on colder days that the Weber own brand gas canisters can struggle, affecting its performance. These are butane with a higher freezing point than propane and stop supplying gas in the cold. So you MUST use strictly propane gas canisters, which do cost more.

Despite these points, I found the quality of build and the practical features like the side shelf and tool hooks made it a joy to use for my grilling needs.

Comparing it to other portable grills, the Weber Traveler stands out for its larger grilling area and solid construction. It’s a bit heavier and bulkier, but for me, the trade-off for its cooking performance and durability is worth it. It’s not the ultimate solution for every grilling scenario, especially for those looking to roast or smoke large items as the lid is simply too low and you cannot fit large cuts of meat under it, but for everything else, it’s been fantastic.

In summary, my time with the Weber Traveler has shown it to be a solid, dependable grill that’s perfect for someone with a mobile lifestyle or limited space, who only needs to grill small items at a single temperature across the grill surface. It’s simple to use, clean, and wheel about, making it perfect to take along for cooking outside. However, it is a single burner, so if you want to cook using dual heat zones, this is not the grill for you. And while it might not replace a full-sized grill for all your cooking needs, it strikes a great balance between portability and functionality.

Check out our test results for more information and an in-depth of every feature in real world cooking scenarios: Weber Traveler testing and review.


  • Main burners: BTU-per-hour input 13,000
  • Dimensions – Lid Closed (inches): 37.2” H x 43.6” W x 23” D
  • Total cooking area (square inches): 320 sq. in.
  • Stainless steel burners: 1
  • Fuel type: Liquid Propane (disposable cylinder sold separately)
  • Side tables: 1
  • Cooking grate type: Porcelain-enameled, cast-iron cooking grates
  • Durable all-weather wheels: 2
  • Tool hooks: 3
  • Built-in lid thermometer: Yes

What Others Say

At the time of writing, the combination of customer feedback at various large stores is as follows:

  • 4.5/5 from 2,113 reviews.
  • HomeDepot: 4.5/5 from 1,226 reviews.
  • 4.6/5 from 2,342 reviews. awards the grill a Gold Medal for its quality build, excellent customer service, and value-packed, feature-rich design. It highlights the grill’s efficient use of space and even cooking, proven with wings and skirt steak tests. They praise the features like its porcelain-enameled steel body, consistent heat from a stainless steel burner, and even-heating porcelain-enameled cast-iron grates. Using cast iron grates instead of a heat tent or Flavorizer bars is considered a clever design choice, protecting the burner from grease. They recommend the grill for those needing a quality, portable grill for outdoor activities, with its benefits outweighing the cost.

How We Researched and Picked the Best Small Grills

When finding the best small grills for our list, we started by shortlisting over 50 products, sorting them into categories like best overall, best charcoal, best gas, best for camping, etc. Our goal was to ensure we covered all the bases so you can find exactly what you need. To do this, we used our knowledge and also turned to other experts and trusted names in the food and grill world. We checked out what places like AmazingRibs, Smoked BBQ Source, and The Spruce Eats had to say. These sites are known for their thorough testing and honest reviews, so we knew we could trust their recommendations.

But we didn’t stop there. We also wanted to see what real users thought. So, we went to the leading online shops where people buy these grills, like Amazon, Walmart, and BBQGuys. We read countless reviews to see what people loved and didn’t. This helped us understand which grills performed well in real-life situations, not just in test conditions.

We also know that there’s a whole community of grilling enthusiasts out there who love to share their experiences. So, we dived into social media and forums like Reddit’s grilling communities and the BBQ Brethren Forums. These places are goldmines for honest feedback and tips from people who really use these products. We needed to understand what features mattered most to the everyday griller.

After all this research, we narrowed our list to the top picks in each category. But we didn’t just take everyone else’s word for it. We bought and tested many of these grills, as seen in our reviews above. This hands-on experience gave us the confidence to recommend these products to you. We’ve done the hard work sorting through the options so you can easily find the right grill for your needs.

Buying Guide — What to Look for in The Best Small Grill

Let’s start by going over some features and factors to consider before taking the plunge and dropping some coin.

Remember the old carpenter’s motto, “measure twice, cut once”? The same applies here; do your homework and buy the right grill the first time.

However, before you head out with cash in hand, ask yourself the question if you’re even allowed to have a grill in your apartment?

Which Fuel Types are You Allowed to Have in Your Small Space?

A live fire of wood or charcoal, in a small grill on a balc.
In many places, you aren’t allowed to have ANY open flame on your balcony, including charcoal, wood, or gas grills.

Before diving into grill features, consider the legal aspects. Your area may have specific bylaws or regulations affecting grill use. For example, some places restrict barbecue use on wooden decks or require a safe distance from structures.

Check with your landlord or association for any rules if renting or in a condo. In London, barbecuing on balconies isn’t illegal but discouraged. At the same time, New York City bans large LPG tanks on balconies and requires clearance for charcoal grills. Electric grills are generally allowed.

Build Quality

Naturally, avoid buying junk for anything except demolition derbies. A small grill, though less used, needs durability.

Consider your grilling frequency, weather exposure, and storage. For heavy use, prioritize solid, durable materials and rust resistance for outdoor storage.

Allowed and Preferred Fuel Type

If your yard or balcony is small, you might not be able to pick the type of fuel you like for your grill. Instead, you’ll need to choose what your city or landlord allows. Make sure to check this.

If free to choose, then here are the pros and cons of each fuel type:


Charcoal is, understandably, forbidden in most apartment and condo buildings, or anywhere with a lot of wood. Unextinguished coals are an apparent fire hazard. Although most purists prefer to cook over charcoal, make sure you do your research before you settle on this kind of grill.

Charcoal gives the best authentic smoky flavor, but requires the most work due to lighting, fire management, and ashes to dispose of.


Propane, or Liquid Propane Gas (LPG) allows you to have an open flame, but without the issue of needing to extinguish a solid fuel.

LPG tanks and propane grills are available in many sizes and can be very convenient — certainly they’re a leading choice for campers and tailgaters. Tanks must be stored when not in use, and some regions have strict rules about LPG storage.

Gas is convenient and easy to use, but does not have the authentic smoky BBQ flavor compared to charcoal.

Natural Gas

A rare choice for small spaces, but certainly convenient when available. You won’t see this on a balcony anywhere, but where allowed, it could be set up in the small backyard of, say, a town home.

Be sure to hire a gas fitter who has all the necessary certifications to work in your area, who can install such a grill and gas line safely.


A small round electric on an apartment balc.
Be aware, that an electric grill might be your only option — by law — if you plan to cook on your balcony.

You might think of electricity as a last resort, but it’s a viable alternative when charcoal and gas aren’t allowed, or aren’t practical. Although it’s not the same as cooking over a fire, at least it’s still cooking outside — you can even make grill marks!

Before rushing out to buy an electric grill for your balcony, though, ensure you have a suitably located outlet. You don’t want the cord to be a tripping hazard — an electric grill can leave a burn mark on your skin just as readily as a gas or charcoal BBQ!

Do You Need Extra Work Space?

Take a look at your space and think about where you’re going to be able to set down your utensils, spices and sauces, and the food itself before it goes on the BBQ.

If there’s nothing handy, and no place to put a table or shelf, think about whether you might need a grill that has some shelves or hooks.

Stand or Table?

If you have somewhere in mind to place your new barbecue (make sure it’s solid, steady, and not flammable), then you won’t need to worry about a stand. However, if you do need a self-supporting grill, look for one that’s sturdy and not prone to tipping.

If you think you’ll be moving it around much, wheels are a must — even a light barbecue starts to seem heavy after shifting it about a few times.

Size and Cooking Capacity

Size is perhaps the most critical factor to consider. Trying to shoehorn an oversized cooker into a tiny space is impractical and possibly dangerous. Measure your space and think about how people will move around the grill. You don’t want to risk rubbing up against hot surfaces while trying to get to your chair.

You might try cutting out a piece of cardboard as a template to determine how large a footprint is practical/safe to work with.

Also, make sure you get a grill with sufficient cooking surface area. If only cooking for 1 or 2, you can obviously get away with a smaller grill than if you wish to regularly cook for 6.

Available Accessories

Small grills and accessories don’t always go hand-in-hand. But, just because you’re going with a more modest grill, that doesn’t mean you necessarily have to go without any perks.

Give some thought as to how you will use your barbecue and what you’ll be cooking. For example, if you’re just flipping a few patties or rolling some sausages, you won’t need a battery of hooks for hanging all your utensils. Try to find one with the features you actually need, but be prepared to compromise to get a grill that fits in your space.

User Reviews

There’s no substitute for experience, so it’s worth looking at what others have to say about a grill before you make your choice. All the grills we’ve selected have been favorably reviewed overall, but nothing is ever perfect. It’s good to read through comments and see what situations have given positive results, and what circumstances may have led to a negative review.

Reviewers Tip: Don’t make a judgment based on star ratings alone! Often, people will leave a bad review just because there were shipping issues, and these are seldom a reflection of the quality of the barbecue itself.

How Much do You want to Spend?

Consider carefully before deciding how much to spend on a barbecue. Think about how often you plan to use it and what you’re going to cook on it.

If you plan on making a few burgers a couple of times per season, there’s no need to break the bank on a luxury barbecue. But, if you really want to get grilling some gourmet stuff on a regular basis, you might wish to loosen the purse strings just a bit.

Alternative Options

We’ve covered above the best small grills in a few different categories, and we strongly recommend you pick from this list. However, there are many hundreds (or more?) grills available across all the types discussed.

If you’d like to dig deeper into the world of small grills, we recommend you check out some of our other articles on the topic, so you can be absolutely sure you’re making the right buying decision.

Maybe you will find the right grill for you in our tabletop grill reviews? Or, if you plan to grill while out at sporting events, something from our list of the best tailgating grills would be more suitable?

If none of these seem small enough, have a look at our articles on the best portable gas grills and the best portable charcoal grills to see more of the most compact grills out there.

Closing the Lid on these Small Grill Reviews

Well, what do you say? Feeling a little better about your personal space now? As you can see, there is a small grilling option for just about any situation, no matter how tight it is, or how hopeless it may seem.

Now that you have this information, we encourage you to think carefully. Do a little comparison-shopping, and go out and get yourself a small BBQ grill! They are a perfect accompaniment to a small-space, frugal lifestyle, and you shouldn’t be without one.

If you liked this article, or if there’s something you’d like to say about it (good or bad!), drop us a line in the comments below and let us know. Your feedback makes us better!

Thanks for reading — until next time, get out there and grab life by the grill!

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Mark Jenner profile picture

Written By: Mark Jenner

I'm a BBQ fanatic and have been barbecuing and grilling since 2005. I founded FoodFireFriends in 2017 and have extensively written for the site since.

I love cooking outdoors over live fire and smoke whatever the weather, and I currently own over 30 grills and smokers of all varieties that I frequently cook on to produce epic food.

My goal with this site is to help as many people as possible enjoy and be good at doing the same.

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  1. Avatar for laura sawyer laura sawyer says:

    This article was very helpful! Thank you so much!

    1. Avatar for Mark Jenner Mark Jenner says:

      Thanks, Laura 🙂

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