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The Best Outdoor Griddle for Outdoorsy Cooking
Embracing the sizzle of steaks and the aroma of fresh veggies under an open sky, the best outdoor griddles today bring the delight of cooking al fresco to your backyard. These top-tier culinary comrades stand out for their even heating, robust build, and versatility, catering to the weekend pancake flipper and the gourmet burger aficionado alike. With each outdoor griddle model tailored to fit a range of preferences, from the compact and portable to the grand stationery centerpieces of outdoor kitchens, there’s a perfect match for every grill master. As we delve into the specifics that make these products capture the hearts of outdoor cooking enthusiasts, you’ll find our approach as a friendly guide, offering insights into how these griddles can enhance your culinary adventures and the factors to consider before selecting one of your own. Whether you’re feeding a crowd or simply elevating your grill game, let’s journey together to explore how the best outdoor griddles can transform your open-air cooking experience.Show contentsDetailing the Best Outdoor Griddles of 2024
- Blackstone Flat Top Gas Outdoor Griddle - Best Overall
- Char-Griller Flat Iron 3 Burner Outdoor Griddle - Best for Multiple Cooking Needs
- Royal Gourmet Portable Table Top Gas Outdoor Griddle - Best for Easy Transport
- Cuisinart Outdoor Griddle Cooking Center - Best for Roasting
- Country Smokers 4-Burner Portable Outdoor Griddle - Best for Durability
Finding the Best Outdoor Griddle: Your Ultimate Buying Guide
When the sun is shining and the weather is sweet, cooking outdoors can be one of life’s simple pleasures. Whether you’re flipping burgers for a family reunion or searing veggies for a friendly get-together, a reliable outdoor griddle can take your alfresco dining experience to the next level. But with so many options on the market, how do you choose the right one for your needs? Let’s cut through the confusion and find the perfect griddle for your open-air culinary adventures!
Size and Cooking Surface
The size of your outdoor griddle is a crucial factor. Consider how much space you have and how many people you typically cook for. Do you need a compact model that can fit on a tabletop, or are you looking for a larger griddle to cater to big gatherings? Also, think about the cooking surface material. Cast iron is the go-to for many chefs, thanks to its excellent heat retention and distribution, but stainless steel and rolled steel are also popular choices for their durability and ease of cleaning. Whatever size or material you pick, make sure it fits your space and your cooking style.
A great outdoor griddle should provide consistent heat across the entire cooking surface. Uneven heating can lead to undercooked or burnt food, which is a no-go for any grilling enthusiast. Look for griddles with multiple burners that allow you to control different zones of the cooking area. This can be particularly useful when you want to cook different types of food at the same time. Additionally, check the BTU (British Thermal Units) rating, which indicates the amount of heat generated. A higher BTU means more power, but also consider the efficiency of how that heat is distributed.
Do you plan to take your outdoor griddle on camping trips, picnics, or tailgating? Then portability might be a key feature for you. Look for lightweight models with easy-to-carry handles or legs that fold for transport. Some griddles even come with carrying cases or stands with wheels. However, don’t sacrifice durability for portability; ensure that your portable griddle is still robust enough to withstand the rigors of travel.
Outdoor griddles typically run on propane or natural gas, although there are electric models available, too. Propane griddles are popular for their portability since you can take the fuel canisters anywhere. In contrast, natural gas griddles connect to your home’s gas supply, providing an uninterrupted fuel source, which is ideal if you grill frequently and don’t want to change tanks often. Electric griddles are less common outdoors but can be suitable for areas where open flames are not allowed. Choose the type that best suits your lifestyle and grilling preferences.
Ease of Maintenance
Nobody wants to spend hours cleaning their outdoor griddle after a fun day of cooking. A griddle with a non-stick surface or one that comes with a built-in grease management system will make your life much easier. Look for a model that has a simple and efficient way to collect and dispose of grease. Additionally, griddles with fewer crevices and accessible components will be less of a hassle to maintain in the long run.
Sometimes, it’s the little things that make a big difference. Many outdoor griddles come with extra features that can enhance your cooking experience. A side shelf or under-griddle storage can keep your cooking tools and ingredients handy. An integrated ignition system gives you quick and reliable starts. Some griddles even offer compatibility with various accessories like griddle covers, grill grates, or pizza stones. Think about which additional features could bring more joy and convenience to your outdoor cooking adventures.
Price and Warranty
Last but not least, consider your budget. Outdoor griddles come in a range of prices, and it’s important to find one that offers good value for your money. However, don’t just go for the cheapest option—invest in a griddle that’s well-built and from a reputable brand. Examine the warranty offered, as a good warranty can provide peace of mind and protection for your investment. It’s a balance between cost and quality, and a solid warranty can tip the scales in favor of a slightly pricier model.
With these attributes in mind, you’re well on your way to finding the outdoor griddle that’s perfect for you. Remember, the best outdoor griddle is the one that fits your lifestyle, cooking needs, and budget, and provides delicious food for those unforgettable outdoor meals.
Detailing the Best Outdoor Griddles of 20241– Best Overall
Introducing the Blackstone Flat Top Gas Outdoor Griddle, a culinary powerhouse designed for restaurant-style cooking in the great outdoors. With two propane-fueled burners and a rear grease management system, this 28-inch outdoor griddle offers 470 square inches of flat-top grilling perfection. From breakfast favorites like eggs and pancakes to savory steaks and Teppanyaki-style delights, this griddle is a versatile outdoor kitchen, which is why it is the best overall option on our list.
Bid farewell to traditional grills and BBQs — this outdoor griddle replaces them effortlessly. Easy to assemble and powered by a battery-operated push-button ignition, it eliminates the hassle of charcoal, matches, and kerosene. Additionally, the griddle features a bottom shelf and two side shelves for convenient food storage and preparation. Transportation is a breeze with the removable griddle top, fold-up legs, and four industrial-strength caster wheels.2– Best for Multiple Cooking Needs
The Char-Griller Flat Iron 3 Burner Outdoor Griddle is a premium full-size portable griddle that redefines outdoor cooking. With a spacious 520 square-inch cooking surface, this flat-top gas griddle is perfect for feeding the whole family at home or on the go. The hinged lid, foldable side shelf, bottom storage shelf, and griddle accessory utensil hooks add convenience, while the collapsible legs, grill cart handle, and two wheels make it easily portable and mobile.
Experience precise temperature control with three burners generating 36,000 BTU and evenly distributing heat across independent cooking zones. Moreover, wind guards are in place to protect the burners, ensuring consistent cooking temperatures. From breakfast favorites like pancakes and eggs to versatile dinner options like smash burgers, steak, and hibachi grill recipes, this outdoor griddle does it all!3– Best for Easy Transport
Regarding portability and convenience, the Royal Gourmet Portable Table Top Gas Outdoor Griddle does not disappoint. This 24-inch, 3-burner outdoor griddle is highly transportable and ideal for camping or tailgating. Sturdy feet ensure stability while cooking, and it operates with a 20 lb propane tank (not included) using the provided hose and regulator. Furthermore, the griddle comes equipped with a PVC-coated, thick cover to protect it from the outdoor elements and a relief valve for pressure control.
This outdoor griddle features three separately controlled burners that deliver 25,500 BTU cooking power. The integrated piezo igniter ensures immediate ignition with a simple push of a button, and the spacious 316-inch cooking surface provides ample room for various culinary creations. Assembling this griddle is a breeze. Clean-up is also hassle-free with a removable grease cup that collects oil residue and a detachable griddle top that makes washing it a cinch.4– Best for Roasting
For the best in outdoor cooking, turn to the Cuisinart Outdoor Griddle Cooking Center. This unique outdoor griddle features two burners that are independently controlled, providing you with 30,000 BTUs of heat and full command over hot and cool zones. Clean-up is not an issue, as it comes equipped with a large 360° grease pan for guiding grease into the grease cup, making for a mess-free and enjoyable cooking experience.
The standout feature of this outdoor griddle is its stainless steel lid with a vent. It not only effectively covers your edibles, but allows you to bake, steam, smoke, or roast your favorite dishes. When it comes to food preparation, this griddle has you covered with the folding prep table and paper towel holder conveniently placed underneath. Assembly can be accomplished in 30 minutes or less so you can quickly begin cooking, and worries about uneven heat are gone thanks to the two heat zones that provide even and consistent meals.5– Best for Durability
The Country Smokers 4-Burner Portable Outdoor Griddle is your outdoor companion for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This outdoor griddle features a stainless steel design and griddle top, providing durability and style. The benefits of the griddle top don’t stop there, though, as it is pre-seasoned with plant-based oil for your convenience. The griddle may be constructed from steel, but it is very lightweight and portable, with collapsible legs and two foam-covered handles for a comfortable grip. You can take it with you on your next camping adventure or leave it at home for a backyard cookout.
This outdoor griddle provides ample room for cooking for large groups — even ten or more people can be accommodated. This is all thanks to the generous 597 square-inch cooking surface, perfect for whipping up multiple meals. For protection against outdoor conditions, this griddle also includes protective burner covers to protect it against wind and cold, adding to its longevity.
Outdoor Griddle FAQsQ: What is an outdoor griddle?
A: An outdoor griddle is a flat-top cooking surface that can be used outdoors, typically powered by propane gas. It provides a large, flat area that's perfect for cooking a variety of foods, from pancakes and eggs to burgers and steaks.Q: How do I set up my outdoor griddle for the first time?
A: To set up your outdoor griddle, assemble it according to the manufacturer's instructions, connect it to a gas supply if it’s gas-powered, and season the cooking surface by heating it and applying a coat of cooking oil to create a non-stick layer.Q: How do I properly season my outdoor griddle?
A: Clean the surface thoroughly and then heat it to a high temperature. Apply a thin layer of high smoke point oil, such as canola or flaxseed oil, across the entire surface. Allow the oil to smoke and burn off, then repeat the process a few times. This will create a non-stick layer on the griddle.Q: What is the best way to clean my outdoor griddle after use?Q: Can I leave my outdoor griddle outside all year round?
A: Most outdoor griddles are designed to withstand outdoor conditions, but it is advisable to use a cover to protect it from the elements and store it in a dry place if possible, especially during harsh weather conditions, to prolong its lifespan.Q: Why is my outdoor griddle not heating evenly?
A: Uneven heating could be due to low gas pressure, clogged burners, or the uneven distribution of griddle seasoning. Check your propane tank, clean the burners, and re-season the griddle surface if necessary.Q: What type of utensils should I use on my outdoor griddle?
A: Use metal or hard plastic utensils that are designed for high heat. Avoid using utensils with sharp edges that can scratch the griddle surface.Q: Is it necessary to use oil when cooking on an outdoor griddle?
A: Yes, using oil helps to prevent food from sticking, contributes to a better cooking experience, and aids in the maintenance of the griddle's seasoning.Q: How do I know when my griddle is at the right temperature for cooking?
A: Most griddles come with a built-in temperature gauge, but you can also use an infrared thermometer to check the surface temperature. Alternatively, sprinkle some water on the griddle; if it dances or beads up, the griddle is hot and ready for cooking.Q: Can I cook with pots and pans on my outdoor griddle?
A: Yes, you can use pots and pans on an outdoor griddle. Just be aware that it may leave marks or scratches, and it can affect the seasoning layer if not done carefully.Q: What safety precautions should I take when using an outdoor griddle?
A: Always use the griddle outdoors in a well-ventilated area. Keep the griddle stable on a flat surface, check for gas leaks regularly if using a gas-powered model, and never leave the griddle unattended while it's on.