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Sept. 30, 2011
How to Choose A Barbecue Grill
"Picking the Grill of Your Dreams!"

By: Larry Howeth

If you are looking to buy your first barbecue grill or to replace your current one, you will find a large variety of options available. Don’t let the many different options confuse you. In this article we will look at the characteristics of each type of grill in order to help you make an informed decision on which barbecue grill is best for your situation.

There are four basic types of grills: charcoal, gas, electric and the smoker. These can range in price from inexpensive to very expensive depending on the type of barbecue grill and the various options available on it. They also vary in ease of use.

Charcoal grills tend to be somewhat less expensive. Small, very basic charcoal grills can be found for about $30. They can also provide more of the smoky aroma and taste associated with outdoor cooking, and they tend to cook a little quicker.

On the other hand, charcoal grills are more difficult to use because they tend to require closer attention to the food during the cooking process. The use of charcoal briquettes can produce uneven temperatures across the whole area of the grill, and therefore cause uneven or unpredictable cooking of meats and vegetables. Special grilling techniques can help with this. Also you must clean up and dispose of the left over charcoal ash that remains in the grill pan.

Gas grills are probably the easiest to use. Propane grills are slightly more expensive, starting around $100 dollars. Keep in mind that you will have to refill the propane tank or exchange it for a full one. This means that you will have to monitor closely the fuel level in order to avoid running out during grilling - not a happy event! The smoke flavor that is easier to produce with the charcoal grill can be achieved on the gas grill with a smoker box or smoker pouch.

Natural gas grills are connected directly into your home's natural gas line and are easier to clean than charcoal grills or smokers since you do not have to worry about cleaning out the burnt charcoal or wood. You also do not have to worry about buying charcoal briquettes or refilling a propane tank! They are a little more complex and usually start in the $300 range.

Electric grills tend to be smaller grills used on an apartment patio, balcony or kitchen due to open fire restrictions. Although larger patio or deck versions are available electric grills can be more of a challenge to obtain the smoke flavor associated with outdoor live fire grilling.

Smokers, slightly more expensive than a propane grill at about $130, come in two varieties - vertical and horizontal. They are best for smoking and slow barbecuing larger portions of meat, such as large roasts and briskets, and you can manage taste by changing the variety of wood you use.

Finally, when your grill is not in use, you must have a proper place to store it. Take into consideration how much space you have. Remember that bigger grills require more space to store and more time to clean.

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With so many options how do you find the right Barbecue Grill for you? This article looks at the basic differences in the four grill types.