Best Gas Grills For Budget-Conscious Buyers

Tara Williams

Food Writer & Editor For KitchenSanity

Tara Williams is a seasoned food writer and editor who's been with KitchenSanity since its beginning. With a knack for experimenting with food and creating delicious recipes, she's your go-to for straightforward kitchen advice and practical tips from personal experiences. As a mom of two, Tara understands the value of time. She crafts articles that enhance your cooking skills and free up time for what matters most—like family moments.

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Being on a budget can sometimes feel like a tightrope walk, especially when you want to make a purchase that combines quality and value.

A limited budget doesn’t mean you have to compromise on getting a fantastic gas grill.

The Char-Broil Classic 360 stands out as my top pick for those on a budget. With 30,000 BTUs of heat and additional features like a side burner and wheels for easier mobility, it provides versatility without breaking the bank, making it an excellent value for its price.

But it’s not the only option to consider when funds are running low! In this guide, I aim to help you navigate the maze of options and pinpoint a gas grill that fits your wallet and meets your grilling needs.

So, let’s get right to my reviews!

Best Afforable & Value Overall

Char-Broil Classic 360

Char-Broil® Classic Series™ Convective 3-Burner with Side Burner Propane Gas Stainless Steel Grill - 463773817-P2

Reasons To Buy:

  • Affordable Price And Value
  • Porcelain-Coated Grates
  • Piezo Ignition System (push button start)
  • Larger Grill Cooking Surface
  • Lid-mounted Temperature Gauge
  • Storage For Your Grilling Tools

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Can’t Use A Wire Brush On Grill Grates
  • Assembly Isn’t Super Easy

Let’s chat about the Char-Broil Classic 3-Burner Gas Grill, especially those porcelain-coated grates.

Just like that trusty old skillet you’ve had for years, these porcelain-coated grates offer a non-stick surface, making your grilling experience smoother.

Plus, they’re super easy to clean.

I prefer to clean them when they’re still warm and use tongs and a wet cloth to run back and forth over them.

The downside is that you can’t use a wire grill brush to clean the grates, just as you wouldn’t use a Brillo pad to clean a non-stick pan.

Starting up a cheap grill used to be a whole ordeal. You’d be there, fumbling with matches or lighter, hoping for the best. But with this grill’s Piezo ignition system, it’s like flipping on your kitchen stove. Just one push, and you’re in business.

And let’s chat about space. This grill boasts 360 square inches for your main grilling area and another 170 on its warming rack. That’s 530 square inches in total, about the same as the Spirit Weber II!

This grill’s lid-mounted temperature gauge is like having an oven thermometer but for your grill. This really helps for low and slow grilling. No more guessing games.

They have to sacrifice something on this grill, and I think it’s in the form of preassembly. If putting things together isn’t your jam, maybe call up a buddy to help.

If you’re on the hunt for a dependable grill with room to spare, the Char-Broil Classic 3-Burner Gas Grill is my top pick. If you can find it on sale, use the extra cash to buy a cover and a good set of grilling utensils.

Best Features

Weber Spirit II E-310

Weber Spirit II E-310 3-Burner Natural Gas Grill, Black

Reasons To Buy:

  • Weber Connect Smart Grill Technology (tells you when to flip and serve your food)
  • Three burners, two side tables, warming rack
  • 10-Year Warranty

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Price (high price range for a budget grill)
  • Assembly Required

Imagine you’re setting up for a relaxed family dinner or a chill evening with friends. This grill has its main burners kicking out 30,000 BTUs per hour, so it’s ready to tackle all of your meat and veggies and give them a smoky flavor.

But what really gets me excited is the amount of inches of cooking space.

You’ve got a primary grilling area of 424 square inches. Need to keep some dishes warm while others cook? The warming rack gives you an additional 105 square inches for indirect cooking. So, you’re working with 529 square inches of cooking area real estate.

The Weber Connect, smart grill tech, is something you won’t see in my other picks. It sends timely alerts to your phone to tell you when to flip or remove your food at the right moment.

With the lid open, it stands tall at 57″ tall, stretches 52″ wide, and is 26″ deep. Close that lid, and it becomes a compact 44.5 high while keeping the width and extending slightly to 27″ in depth.

Of course, you should always be grilling with a lot of space around the grill itself to prevent accidents and other problems.

Remember, Weber’s 10-year Warranty is their nod of confidence in this grill’s longevity.

But always give a thought to the price and see if it’s the right fit for your grilling budget.

Great For Small Spaces


MASTER COOK 3 Burner BBQ Propane Gas Grill, Stainless Steel 30,000 BTU Patio Garden Barbecue Grill with Two Foldable Shelves

Reasons To Buy:

  • Compact Size
  • Easy Assembly
  • Value for Money

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Size of Cooking Area
  • No Side Burner
  • Durability Concerns (sturdy but has some cheap parts)

This grill is perfect for those with limited space. It’s not too big, making it ideal for smaller patios or balconies. It’s compact, so it doesn’t hog all the space on your patio, but trust me, it’s got the heart of a lion when it comes to performance (30,000 BTUs).

Remember, sacrifices have to be made to keep the price of these grills inexpensive.

This grill also has porcelain-enamel wire cooking grates, but the cooking area is much smaller than the other top picks, with a total of 471.8 square inches (339 for cooking and 132.8 for warming).

If you’re the kind who throws big BBQ parties, you will find the cooking area a tad limiting. And there’s no side burner, so a bit of meal prep strategy might be in order.

Like all good things in the kitchen, a little love and care (think cleaning and covering) will ensure it’s by your side for a few years.

So, if you’re looking for a reliable sidekick for your everyday grilling, the MASTER COOK 3 Burner BBQ Propane Gas Grill is a solid pick among affordable gas grills.


American Gourmet Classic 280

American Gourmet by Char-Broil Classic Series Convective 2-Burner Propane Stainless Steel Gas Grill - 463672717

Reasons To Buy:

  • Very Budget-Friendly
  • Compact Size
  • Additional Prep Space
  • Durable Design (porcelain-coated steel lid and firebox)
  • Quick Start

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Only 20,000 BTUs
  • Limited Inches Of Cooking Space
  • Assembly Required

You’ve got a cozy patio or a snug balcony, and you’re thinking, “I need a grill that fits just right.” This could be the one for you. Its size compares to the Master Cook 3, but the reduced price comes at the cost of reduced BTUs.

While 20,000 BTUs is decent, it’s on the lower end of what I would consider using for steaks and other meats.

One thing that stands out is its porcelain-coated steel lid and firebox. This grill is built to last, grilling in the rain or shine, but I still recommend getting a cover for it because not all the parts are as durable.

The two metal side shelves are pretty good for holding your tools, sauces, or maybe a cold beverage while you grill. But, let’s be honest, there’s never enough room, and you’re bound to knock something off them at some point.

If you’re after a reliable grill that’s just the right fit for smaller spaces, the American Gourmet Classic 280 might just be your new BBQ buddy.

Best Budget Gas Griddle

Blackstone Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle

Blackstone Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle 2 Burner Propane Fuelled Rear Grease Management System, 1517, Outdoor Griddle Station for Camping, 28 inch

Reasons To Buy:

  • Middle Of The Road Budget-Friendly
  • Large Flat Cooking Surface
  • Heat Controls
  • Grease Management
  • Wheel Stopper

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Prop 65 Warnings
  • You Want The Char Of A Gas Grill

It’s Sunday morning, the sun’s shining, and you’re in the mood for a big brunch. Pancakes, eggs, bacon, the works. This griddle’s got you covered with a whopping 524 sq inches of flat-top grilling.

The adjustable heat controls give you the flexibility to manage different foods at once, ensuring everything’s cooked just right. Keep your meat and hash browns warm while you’re cracking eggs.

When it comes to cleaning up, the rear grease management system helps with less mess and less stress. It’s a removable grease tray which makes it easy to dispose of old grease.

But, I have to mention the Prop 65 warnings that come with this product. It’s all about being informed and making choices that are right for you. Always make sure to follow any safety guidelines or recommendations provided by the manufacturer. Safety comes first, always.

I add the Blackstone 28″ griddle to my top picks because it can transform the way you cook outdoors. From morning pancakes to evening grilling and BBQs, you have a load of options to use as your only go-to or an addition to your classic gas grill.

Best Portable Gas Grill On A Budget

Cuisinart CGG-240 Roll-Away

Cuisinart CGG-240 All Foods, 27.3' L x 38' W x 23.5' H, Roll-Away Gas Grill, Stainless Steel & QG-012B LP Adapter Hose, 4 feet, Black & CGC-21 All-Foods Gas Grill Cover, Black

Reasons To Buy:

  • Extreme Portability
  • Twist Start electric ignition
  • Even Heat Distribution

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Only 15,000 BTUs
  • Available Cooking Space

This grill is a great option for both backyard and spontaneous camping trips. Starting it up is a piece of cake. Unfold, and then just a twist, and it’s on. No matches, no lighters.

The grill’s cooking surface is only 240 square inches, much smaller than my other picks. However, the double-wall stainless steel cover helps make sure that the heat is spread out evenly when closed.

So, you’ll have to adjust to cooking with the lid, but it ensures you aren’t left with half-cooked, half-burnt burgers.

And speaking of heat, it has a 15,000 BTU stainless-steel loop burner. While it’s on the lower end of what I’d really want, the portability makes it worth it.

And those two stainless steel shelves on the side? Perfect for keeping your sauces, plates, or whatever you need close by.

Once everything’s cooled down, they just fold right back underneath.

Oh, and clean-up? It has this drip tray that catches all the grease, and a gas regulator keeps an eye on the propane flow. Just a heads up, you’ll need to get the propane and tank separately, like all models.

And the best part? It comes with a 3-year limited warranty. So, if you’re thinking of getting a new budget gas grill and need a portable grill over the lack of heat, this one’s definitely worth checking out.

Best BTU Heat

Char-Broil Performance Cart Style

Char-Broil Performance Series Convective 4-Burner with Side Burner Cart Propane Gas Stainless Steel Grill - 463377319

Reasons To Buy:

  • Powerful Performance (36,000 BTUs)
  • Swing-Away Warming Rack
  • Easy To Move

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Assembly
  • Hot And Cold Spots

First off, this grill has a powerful 36,000-BTU main burner. From my experience, that kind of power means you’ll get that sizzle every time you throw on a steak or some veggies.

Space is often a concern when hosting those summer BBQ parties or large families. With this grill, you’ve got a generous 425 square inches of primary cooking space.

Plus, there’s a 150-square-inch swing-away warming rack. I’ve found such space to be a lifesaver when juggling between grilling and serving. It’s like having an extra pair of hands!

Durability and ease of cleaning are always high on my list when choosing a grill. The stainless-steel burners and porcelain-coated cast-iron grates on this one? They tick both boxes.

I remember the days I’d spend ages scrubbing my old grill. These newer gas propane grills are more about wiping than scrubbing. More time to enjoy the food and less time cleaning? Yes, please!

While the electronic ignition is a fantastic feature for quick starts, always have a manual igniter on hand. Electronics can be fickle, and you wouldn’t want to keep your guests or your belly waiting.

Lastly, while this grill has a lot going for it, keep in mind that I’ve seen a few users mention the occasional uneven heating. It’s something I’ve encountered with various grills over the years and something I’d expect with a budget model. The trick is to get to know your grill and take care of it.

What To Look For When Buying A Gas Grill On A Budget

Heat Distribution and Control

You shouldn’t have to deal with unevenly cooked food, even on a tight budget. Opt for grills with multiple burners for better heat control.

Multiple burners mean you can have different temperature zones, perfect for cooking steaks on one side and veggies on the other.

BTU (British Thermal Units)

BTU measures the grill’s heat output, but bigger isn’t always better. It’s more about how efficiently your grill uses its BTUs.

Look for a budget grill that can maintain a consistent temperature. Sometimes, a grill with fewer BTUs but better heat retention can outperform a high BTU grill.

Material and Build

While stainless steel looks sleek, it’s not always the best choice for grates. Cast iron grates, especially those porcelain-coated ones, are fantastic. They retain heat superbly and give your food those enviable sear marks.

And a solid build? That’s just ensuring your grill can handle the occasional bumps and nudges of backyard life.

Size and Cooking Area

Consider how many people you’ll be grilling for. For intimate family dinners, a compact grill might be perfect.

But if you’re thinking of hosting BBQ parties, you’ll want a larger cooking area. You can find grills spacious enough for those bigger gatherings, even on a budget.

Additional Features

Ever thought about making a sauce while grilling? Side burners can be a game-changer.

And while you’re counting those dollars, see if you can find a grill with a built-in thermometer to help get to the right internal temperature. It’s like having a co-pilot, ensuring your food cooks to perfection.

With these pointers in mind, you’re all set to find a budget grill that doesn’t compromise on quality. Here’s to many delicious BBQs ahead!

Gas Grills On A Budget FAQs

Is it worth buying an inexpensive gas grill?

Absolutely! Buying an inexpensive gas grill can be a great choice, especially if you’re just starting out or don’t grill frequently. Many budget-friendly grills offer solid performance and essential features that rival some pricier models. It’s all about finding the right balance between cost and features that suit your needs.

How long do cheap gas grills last?

The lifespan of a budget gas grill can vary, but with proper care and maintenance, many can last between 3 to 5 years. Factors like build quality, frequency of use, and exposure to the elements all play a role. Regular cleaning and using a protective cover can extend the life of your grill.

What number of BTUs do I need at a minimum?

The ideal BTU depends on the grill’s size. However, for a standard-sized grill on a budget, aiming for around 20,000 to 30,000 BTUs for the main burners should suffice. Remember, it’s not just about the highest BTU but how efficiently the grill uses and distributes that heat.

How long does a tank of propane last?

A standard 20-pound propane tank can provide around 20 to 25 hours of grilling time, depending on the grill’s BTU rating and the heat setting.

Written By Tara Williams

Tara Williams is a seasoned food writer and editor who's been with KitchenSanity since its beginning. With a knack for experimenting with food and creating delicious recipes, she's your go-to for straightforward kitchen advice and practical tips from personal experiences. As a mom of two, Tara understands the value of time. She crafts articles that enhance your cooking skills and free up time for what matters most—like family moments.

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