9.2
Expert Rating

It can be easy to assume that the Best Grills are the most expensive ones, but that’s not always the case. Many great grills are out there for an affordable price, and, thanks to their popularity, finding the Best Pellet Smokers is easier than ever. One great option that keeps costs down is the Z Grills Pellet Grill, a high-quality wood pellet grill smoker that offers some of the same features as pricier alternatives. Especially if you’re new to grilling and smoking, the Z Grills ZPG 550B is a fantastic choice for your outdoor cooking setup.

Why We Like It – Z Grills Pellet Grill

Not everyone needs a behemoth of a pellet smoker when deciding to get into this cooking method, and the Z Grills Pellet Grill is a perfect size and price for newcomers. It’s a high-quality product without the high-quality price that will make you the star of your next family BBQ.

Pros
  • Great price/quality ratio, especially for newcomers
  • High quality stainless steel construction
  • Perfect size for small families and gatherings
Cons
  • Temperature control can be inaccurate.
  • Smaller hopper capacity may require refills while cooking

Power/Heating

Maintaining a consistent temperature and smoke level is key to perfecting your pellet smoker cook. It’s good to see that most Z Grills Pellet Grill reviewers find the digital temperature control unit does an adequate job of doing just that. Depending on your climate, keeping a consistent temperature may be more complex, with some reviewers finding that extra effort to be a bit more of a hassle than anticipated. One other minor issue to note is relatively common in wood pellet grills: hot and cool spots on the cooking space. While this is more of a problem on a massive grill like the Camp Chef Smokepro 36 SGX, the Z Grills Pellet Grill does run slightly more relaxed on the areas not directly above the heat source. And, finally, a few reviewers note that the set temperature typically varies by as much as 30 degrees in either direction. Still, there are far more reviewers that find the Z Grills Pellet Grill consistently produces excellent food.

Size/Versatility

At 538 square inches of total cooking space and with a 10-pound hopper capacity, the Z Grills Pellet Grill is on the small side, but it is still plenty big for many users. The main cooking area is 399 square inches, while the warming rack is 139, which should be enough space to feed 4 to 5 people. Some reviewers note that the small wood pellet hopper capacity must be refilled several times for longer cooks, somewhat mitigating the typical “set it and forget it” mentality that accompanies pellet grill cooking.

Durability

Many reviewers are quick to note that the Z Grills Pellet Grill feels strong and sturdy from the offset. Even before it’s put together, the stainless steel pieces feel the same as other high-quality grills like the Traeger Pro 575. Reviews are somewhat mixed when it comes to the potential life span of this BBQ grill, but for the most part, buyers are optimistic. Should you encounter issues with the smoker, Z Grills offers a 3-year warranty to cover defective parts, and reviewers claim those in the customer service department help get the grill up and run. To further protect the Z Grill Pellet Grill–or any grill for that matter–it’s a good idea to also invest in a high-quality grill cover.

Ease of Use

Part of what makes pellet smokers so appealing over their old-school counterparts is how easy they can be to use. The Z Grills Pellet Grill is just that for most reviewers, who find they can cook burgers, chicken, steak, and more with great ease: simply set the temperature and let the grill do its work. While this grill doesn’t have wifi control like the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett, very few, if any, reviewers miss this feature. As previously mentioned, the hopper capacity is on the small side, so longer cooks will require you to add additional wood pellets throughout. Cleaning is fairly straightforward so long as you’ve correctly lined the grease tray beforehand and have a shop vac for getting out any excess ash not caught in the ash catcher. If you want a Wi-Fi enabled grill, consider the Camp Chef Woodwind Pellet.

Value

For less than $400, the Z Grills Pellet Grill is perhaps one of the best values you can find for a starter smoker. If you expect to cook up a massive amount of food or want the absolute best money can buy, you’d be better off purchasing something more significant with more features; but, anyone who is curious about pellet smoking that doesn’t want to drop a tremendous amount of money for their new machine is likely to be incredibly pleased with this pellet grill. You will, of course, need to purchase wood pellets somewhat regularly, and it’s a great idea to cover this smoker up to protect it when not in use. Overall, newbies will love everything they can do with this grill, while experienced smokers will probably want to look elsewhere.

Z Grills Pellet Grill Wrap Up

The Z Grills Pellet Grill isn’t a top-of-the-line product, but that’s not what every buyer needs. Its smaller size is perfect for accommodating a small family or get-together without taking up a substantial portion of the yard. The temperature control can be off from the actual temperature of the grill, and the smaller size won’t be enough for some people. Amateurs to the craft, though, will be delighted by the quality of food they can quickly produce on this grill, and its durable construction should last for years to come. Anyone that wants to try out smoking without breaking the bank should add this one to their list.

Reader Rating0 Votes0
9.2
Expert Rating
Bottom Line

Zoe Dumas

Zoe is a digital native who cannot remember a time when she didn’t have access to some type of computer. When she’s not busy researching the latest innovations in technology, Zoe loves playing video games, watching movies and TV, reading books, and playing with her two cats.

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