What are Indoor BBQ Grills?

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Updated June 27, 2022

If you are trying to build the ultimate cooking setup, you may wonder exactly what is an indoor BBQ grill. Typically, these are some of the top electric grills. The best grills, after all, are designed for outdoor use, not indoor use. So what is an indoor grill, what are its uses, and should you get one? Keep reading to find out.


  • Indoor BBQ grills tend to be electric appliances that offer some of the functionality of an outdoor grill, though cannot replicate the smoky flavor.
  • Some indoor grills a simply stovetop appliances that are shaped like grills, offering the ability to create grill marks via the cooking surface. Some refer to this as a contact grill or even griddle plates.
  • Indoor electric grills can be used all year, whereas outdoor charcoal grills are tethered to the more temperate months.

What is an Indoor Grill?

An indoor grill is an appliance that mimics the outdoor grilling experience. It typically uses electricity, if you are wondering about the definition of a natural gas grill, this is not it. However, some indoor grills are simply grill pans, which are just stovetop pans that feature grill marks to emulate outdoor grilling.

Insider Tip

Some indoor BBQ grills cut down on fat by featuring a sloped design that helps direct cooked fat away from the end product.

Benefits of Using an Indoor Grill

First of all, you aren’t going to get the same smoky flavor using an indoor grill as you’d get with an outdoor grill, no matter if you have a high-end grill made in the USA. Indoor grills simply cannot replicate cooking over an open fire. However, there are some distinct benefits to using an indoor grill.

Available All Year

The primary advantage of going with an indoor grill is that they can be used all year, whereas outdoor grills are really only available during the summer months and part of the spring and fall months. Once there is snow on the ground, outdoor grilling is pretty much off the table. Indoor grills can be used whenever you want, no matter the weather conditions outside. Heck, you can easily grill up some items during a blizzard with an indoor grill, if you are so inclined.

Ease of Use

Let’s face it. Outdoor grilling can be annoying, despite the superior end product. Grills are expensive, bulky, and can be difficult to maintain and clean. You also need fuel, be it charcoal briquette or wood, and time to heat up the grill before cooking. Electric grills are typically plug-and-play. Just plug them into the power outlet and they’ll heat up in a minute or two. It’s hard to beat that level of convenience. Many are also dishwasher safe.

Double as Griddles

Many electric grills double as griddles, meaning you can cook up eggs, ground beef, veggies, or just about anything else. Outdoor grills, however, need a separate griddle attachment to do that. Still, some cast iron griddles can easily just go on a grill.


How to find the best indoor BBQ grill for you?

There are many popular brands out there to choose from, including George Foreman, Hamilton Beach, and more. Pick the grill that has the features you want. Some include extra functionalities, like an air fryer to save on cooking time or a panini press.

Is an indoor BBQ grill worth it?

Sure, as many are fairly budget-friendly, especially models manufactured by Hamilton Beach, George Foreman, and related companies. In any event, an electric model is cheaper than a gas grill.

Are there alternatives to electric indoor grills?

Sure. Try a cast iron pan or griddle to replicate the contact grill experience without having to plug it into an electric outlet.

STAT: In Japanese cities, yakitori carts, restaurants, or shops can be found. These contain charcoal-fired grills and marinated grilled meat on a stick. (source)

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