How to Choose the Best Portable Pellet Grill: Everything You Need to Know

A highlight of any day spent in the great outdoors has to be the food; everything tastes better outside when you’ve worked up an appetite. While a carefully chosen deli sandwich and some potato chips are a good option, it is never going to be as tasty as something good and hot and freshly cooked.

Building a fire is often not an option, what you need is an outdoor portable grill. A portable smoker grill makes cooking on an adventure safe and controllable – and guarantees perfectly cooked flavorsome food, wherever you are. If you are looking for the best portable pellet grills to accompany you into the wild, this article is the best place to start.

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    What is a Portable Pellet Grill?

    There are three options for anyone wanting to cook outdoors:

    • A gas grill
    • A charcoal grill
    • A portable pellet grill

    Gas Grills

    Although a gas grill has the advantage of instant heat it also has the major disadvantage of needing a gas bottle to go with it and those things are often heavy. Plus, driving around with something that flammable isn’t exactly a recipe for a relaxing weekend away. Portable? Sort of, but you wouldn’t want to carry it far. Besides this, food cooked on a gas grill can be a little bland compared to the alternatives.

    Charcoal Grills

    A charcoal grill may be a better option, it usually produces food with more flavor than a gas grill. However, a charcoal grill can be difficult to light, takes a long time to get up to temperature, and is notoriously difficult to cook on. We’ve all experienced the badly barbecued burger – burnt on the outside and raw in the middle.

    Pellet Grills

    The best choice for the alfresco chef has to be a portable wood pellet grill. A portable smoker grill reliably produces beautifully cooked food every time with a subtle smokiness that lifts it to a different level. A wood pellet grill also gives you the flexibility to smoke, roast, sear, braise, barbecue, or char-grill, whatever you need for the recipe you want to make.

    If you care about food, then the choice is a no-brainer. A portable pellet grill allows unlimited ways to cook all kinds of food… perfectly. And it will do this with minimal input from you.

    What You Need Consider When Buying a Portable Pellet Grill

    Size and Weight

    When choosing a portable pellet smoker for camping you want one that is not too heavy or bulky. If you pick one that’s too big and awkward, even carrying it from your car to a table in the campground may be a chore. Apart from weight, you also need it to be easy to pack. Most outdoor trips mean transporting a lot of gear so your grill needs to be able to fit into the available space. Anything bigger than a suitcase is probably going to big to take with you.

    Grilling Area

    Any grill you choose must have the capacity you need to prepare enough food for your starving friends or family. The outdoor life certainly makes you hungry so your grill should maximize the available grill area.

    Ease of Set-Up and Clean-Up

    You want a portable pellet grill that is easy to set up and simple to clean up afterward. Being out in the countryside is supposed to be fun, you don’t want to spend hours getting a grill to work or cleaning it when the cooking is done.

    Temperature Range

    Different recipes require different temperatures so make sure the grill you choose has a suitable temperature range. If you’re only interested in flipping a few burgers and hot dogs, you need something that has a high temperature, but if you want to low and slow cook bigger cuts while you relax, you need a quality pellet grill to give you those results.


    A portable pellet grill smoker leads a tough life so ensure the grill you choose is well made using high-quality materials. You want it to be your companion for years as you camp, fish, and hike.

    What is the Best Portable Pellet Grill to Buy?

    There are a few choices available, but none surpasses the new Z Grills Cruiser 200A Portable Pellet Grill. The Cruiser was built with the go-anywhere, do-anything outdoor type in mind. It’s made to be carried all over the country, easy to transport, fast to set up, and easy to clean.

    Simple to operate, the 200A offers unrivaled flexibility and control and will help you produce perfectly cooked food time after time, wherever in the world you are. It will keep you well fed with everything from burgers to brisket, provided you’ve got the electricity source! If that’s not something you’ve yet considered, make sure you read our article on Power Options for Portable Pellet Grills.

    Why is the Crusier 200A Portable Pellet Grill the Best?

    Here’s why the Cruiser 200A portable pellet grill is the best option:

    • Safety: The Cruiser uses a heating system with no open flame making it safe to use, both for you and the environment.
    • Portability: Built in a suitcase-style case, with a latched lid, and weighing a reasonable 40 pounds, the 200A is easy to pack and set up whether you’ve got an RV, truck, or sedan.
    • Grilling Area and Hopper Capacity: The Cruiser Portable Pellet Grill offers over 200 square inches of grilling area and has a hopper capacity for a generous 8 pounds of pellets – enough for up to 10 hours at low temperatures. The porcelain-coated steel grill distributes heat across the whole area so that everything cooks at the same rate.
    • Precision, Flavor, and Versatility: This grill has a temperature range of between 180F and 450F, controlled digitally for accuracy and consistency. So whether you want to smoke, sear or char-grill, the Cruiser ticks all the boxes. Hot and fast or low and slow, just turn a knob. It couldn’t be easier and the temperature will stay within +/- 15℉ for successful results every time.
    • Easy Set-Up and Clean-Up: The 200A takes minutes to set up, there is minimal clean-up, and the Grease Drain Pan and Drain make it easy to get rid of the grease. To power the grill you will need to provide around 500 watts during power up and then 30 watts for up to 12 hours. There are various options, from a power inverter and deep cycle battery combo, through a portable power station, to a generator, though that’s probably overkilled. To find out more about your options, read our article Power Options for Portable Pellet Grills.
    • Quick Cool Down: Rotating the temperature dial to off initiates the cool-down mode. The grill cools quickly but makes sure it is cold before you try to move it.
    • Solid Construction: The powder-coated steel construction makes the 200A Grill rugged and durable. The quality of materials is matched by the strong handles and tough clips.
    • Reliable Manufacture: Z Grills is a grill manufacturer with over 30 years of experience within the industry. With over 650,000 pellet grills sold and 85 million cooks made.

    What is the Z Grills 200A Portable Grill Good For?

    There are no limitations on when or where you can use the Crusier 200A – provided you’re practicing good common-sense safety, it’s entirely up to you! Here are some of the best:

    • Camping: the 200A will grace any camping ground and make you the envy of other campers.
    • Tailgating before/after the game: make a day of it and enjoy superb food before watching your team win.
    • RVing: whether it’s for a week or you’re full-timing, the 200A will become an indispensable part of your RVing lifestyle.
    • At Home: when you’re not feeding the whole neighborhood the Cruiser 200A will become your go-to for luxurious tasting food.
    • Apartment or Small Home: Not got the room for a full-sized pellet grill? The Cruiser 200A can be the perfect solution for small homes with limited outside space or even just a balcony space (just remember you can’t use any kind of barbecue inside!).

    Best Recipes for Your Portable Wood Pellet Grill While You Are Adventuring

    Because it is so versatile, the Z Grills Cruiser 200A Portable Pellet Grill can be used to cook all kinds of meat, fish, and veggies. The only limit is your imagination! Pretty much everything you like to cook can be prepared to perfection on a portable wood pellet grill. There are countless pellet grill recipes available for you to try but here are three to get you started.

    Whole Smoked Trout

    If you are not in a catch-and-release-only area, nothing tastes better than freshly caught trout cooked on a wood pellet grill. Half an hour will produce fishy heaven.

    Smoked Cheese Burger

    You’ll never want another burger again after sampling a bite of one of these beauties.

    Smoked Corn On The Cob

    Just because it’s a wood pellet smoker doesn’t mean it has to be meat. A Z Grills smoker does unbelievable things to simple corn on the cob.

    A portable pellet grill will change your outdoor experience completely. Imagine having perfectly cooked succulent food every evening after you’ve been hiking, fishing, hunting, or exploring the local area. The Cruiser 200A pellet grill will be the first thing you pack when you’re preparing for another adventure in the wilderness – or even in your backyard.

    We are lucky to live in a beautiful and awe-inspiring country. Spending your recreational time outdoors is a great way to become energized and see new things. But being able to enjoy the best cuisine in the world while you do it makes it the perfect experience, one you’ll want to repeat and repeat.

    So next time you’re planning a trip make sure you include a portable pellet grill on your list of must-haves – right up there with the tent, sleeping bags, and walking boots. Once you’ve eaten food cooked in this unique style, you’ll never look back and you will wonder why you didn’t get one sooner. A portable pellet grill will elevate your time spent outside to another level.

    how long to smoke pork loin
    Weber Original Kettle 22-Inch Charcoal Grill
    • Stay true to the modern version of the kettle that started it all—the Original Kettle, invented by Weber’s founder, and loved around the world. Its ultra-durable, porcelain-enameled lid and bowl retain heat, while the damperseasily adjust for precise temperature control. With a One-Touch cleaning system for easy cleanup after a long day of grilling, the Original Kettle will always be the grill built for everyone
    • Holds up to 13 burgers made with a Weber burger press
    • One-Touch cleaning system provides hassle-free ash cleanup.Removable, aluminum ash catcher
    • Porcelain-enameled lid and bowl Retain heat, and won’t rust or peel
    • Use the lid hook to avoid placing the lid on the ground while grilling
    Cuisinart CGG-7400 Propane, 54 Inch, Full Size Four-Burner Gas Grill
    • COOKING POWER: Four 11, 000 BTU burners provide a total 44, 000 BTUs of cooking power
    • COOKING SPACE: The grill is equipped with 443 square inch of cooking space with an additional 167 square inch warming rack
    • CAST IRON GRATES: Heavy-duty cast iron cooking grates are great for retaining heat
    • PREP SPACE: Two 18" x 13" side tables provide ample space for food prep
    • CONSTRUCTION: Stainless Steel lid and control panel. Actual product may vary from images shown due to product enhancement.
    George Foreman, Silver, 12+ Servings Upto 15 Indoor/Outdoor Electric Grill, GGR50B, REGULAR
    • George Tough Nonstick Coating – There's a lot to love about this nonstick coating; it's durable, easy to clean, and removes the need for butter and oil
    • Indoor or Outdoor Removable Stand – Don't let the weather keep you from the glory of grilling; the easy-to-remove stand takes you from patio to countertop in no time
    • Adjustable Temperature Control – The temperature probe lets you choose from five heat settings to get the best results on any kind of food
    • Apartment-Approved – Your landlord will love this grill just as much as you do because the fully electric system gives you high-quality grilling with no charcoal, no propane, and no flare-ups
    • Included components: Use And Care Manuals

    About The Author

    Z Grills

    Z Grills

    Z Grills is a grill manufacturer with over 30 years of experience within the industry. With over 650,000 pellet grills sold and 85 million cooks made, trust us.

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