Finding the best grills for cheap can definitely be a challenging endeavor. But, the Weber Smokey Joe is a portable grill that can make your search easier. It is so good that it deserves to be on top of your shortlist, even if you’re looking for the best portable grill or the best camping grill. And if you don’t want a portable grill, you can take a look at our list of the best charcoal grill options available on Amazon.
Why We Like It – Weber Smokey Joe
Charcoal grills are necessary for bringing the smoky flavor to grilled foods. And the Weber Smokey Joe grill is one of the very few portable grills that can do that. This could be the perfect size grill for a 2-4 people camping trip. As this grill uses hot coals, it should only be used for outdoor cooking. And unlike most other portable grills, it’s fairly priced too. For a great, although not as portable, that uses gas, check out the Bull Grill.
- Affordable price
- Solid build quality
- Rust-resistant aluminum dampers to control the heat
- The porcelain-enameled bowl lid lowers the temperature
Power & Heating
The Weber Smokey Joe charcoal grill (formerly named Smokey Joe Silver grill) is a fantastic performer for its price. During open-air cooking, it can reach excellent temperature points. However, when you close up the porcelain-enameled bowl lid, the temperature drops drastically. This mainly happens because of poor ventilation.
Related: Also, check out our Weber Q3200 review.
Size & Versatility
For a grill that sports charcoal grates, it is relatively lightweight, and all in all, portable. But obviously, your grill’s weight may vary if you prefill it before carrying it somewhere. Just like the Coleman RoadTrip 285, this grill also comes with a glass-reinforced nylon handle for easy carrying. For another great portable grill, read our Coleman Roadtrip grill review. This grill can easily be stored as it doesn’t take up much space as it has a 14″ diameter. That’s plenty of surface area to cook your favorite meats, from burgers to chicken wings and chicken breasts.
It might not be as durable as something like the Weber Q2400, but a lot of it is made out of the same kind of material (porcelain). For its price, that is very impressive, to say the least. The dampers are pretty much entirely made out of rust-resistant aluminum. With that said, another durable and strong grill is the Rec-Tec RT700.
Ease Of Use
If you’ve had experience using charcoal grills before, operating this grill will be a piece of cake. The chrome-plated steel cooking grate is also a fantastic addition. And there’s even an ash catcher built-in. But, it’s non-removable, which means you can’t empty it at all before you finish cooking. While it is a very portable charcoal grill, you can still cook about 5-6 burger patties at once, so it shouldn’t take too much time to feed everyone at a small get-together as long as the coals stay hot.
Related: If you like this grill, you might be interested in our Weber Spirit E210 review.
For just 35 bucks, almost no other manufacturers provide as much as the Weber Smokey Joe charcoal grill. It has many advanced features (e.g., rust-resistant dampers for controlling the temperature) that cheap grills pretty much never include. However, if you’ve never operated a charcoal grill before, maintaining a propane grill like the Weber Q1200 or a pellet grill like the Z Grills 700D would be much easier.
Weber Smokey Joe Wrap Up
If you’re looking for a good enough charcoal grill on a low budget, the Weber Smokey Joe grill is definitely the one to go for. Its portability alone is going to be perfect for many households.