Longer,warmer summer days are here which means it’s a good time to throw a barbecue party, gather friends and family, and show off your expert grilling skills.
Demand for outdoor grills is increasing in popularity and finding one with easy set up isn’t always obvious, with so much choice.
Gas barbecues are quick to organise meaning you can start to cook instantly without the frustration of preparing the coals. Simply switch on the grill with the press of a button, control the intensity of the heat, and the party can start. When compared to charcoal grills, choosing gas is better for the environment, and you still get the usual barbecue flavours.
In this overview we identify reliable small and larger sized gas grills, at different budgets, suitable for barbecuing.
List of best gas barbecues
- Best overall – Weber Spirit II E-310 3-Burner Liquid Propane Grill
- Best large sized – Royal Gourmet GB8000 8-Burner Liquid Propane Event Gas Grill
- Best portable/tabletop – Weber Q1200 Liquid Propane Grill
- Best with side burner – Char-Broil Classic 360 3-Burner Liquid Propane Gas Grill with Side Burner
- Best budget – American Gourmet Char-Broil Classic 360 3-Burner Liquid Propane Gas Grill
Things to consider before buying
Size matters and it depends on how large your family is and how often you intend to barbecue. Gas grills have from two to eight burners, and we recommend choosing a minimum of three burners, even if you only have a small family and don’t have regular barbecue parties. It is easier to control the temperature, create hot and cold zones, and you never need to overcrowd the barbecue therefore delivering better quality grilling. More burners mean the barbecue is larger and you will need to consider storage when not in use.
This is only required once after purchasing a barbecue but assembling a gas model usually takes a little longer than putting together a charcoal grill. The difficulty level depends on the model and your skills. Always read the manual carefully and allow around two to four hours.
Nowadays, most brands offer an assembly service and sell ready assembled barbecues, but this will come with a price.
Grills come with a multitude of options and features. An automatic starter makes for easy lighting the barbecue with a push of the button. Side burners are good for keeping sauces or stews warm and a cooking grate is perfect for warming buns and vegetables as well as resting meat before cutting. Built-in LED lights, pull-out shelves and wireless temperature monitors are some of the more expensive features.
Most people think that the price is the best indicator of quality, but it is not necessary to increase your budget for a good barbecue. There are decent, low-cost grills without whistles and ‘bells and whistles’ that do the job. If your budget stretches a little further, we recommend opting for a mid-range or premium grill as they are sturdier and will offer a more pleasurable grilling experience. Take note that besides purchasing the barbecue,there are additional costs when buying and refilling fuel.
Overview of best gas barbecues
Best overall – Weber Spirit II E-310 3-Burner Liquid Propane Grill
Weber might be one of the more expensive brands for barbecues, but they are recognised worldwide and appreciated. This good-looking Spirit grill has 3 high performing, powerful burners, a sturdy, stable design, two side tables of which one can flip down if not needed, and six tool hooks for easy storage of brushes and grill tools. The built-in thermometer monitors temperatures and a grease management system makes cleaning easier after a party. The 529 square inches (0.3 sq m) of grilling space is large enough to provide food for the family.
If 3 burners are too big for your household, check out the Spirit II E-210. It is the exact same design but with only two burners, and slightly cheaper.
Related: Essential BBQ tools and accessories
Best large sized – Royal Gourmet GB8000 8-Burner Liquid Propane Event Gas Grill
With eight burners this is the largest grill on the market. The 993 square inches (0.64 sq m) of cooking space with porcelain-enamelled steel wire grates has a gas system which includes two sets of regulators and is large enough to host events for large crowds. There is space to grill up to 60 burgers or 120 hot dogs at once. This grill comes without a lid but has an integrated folding windscreen to protect the grill from breezes during cooking.
Two folding side tables enlarge the workspace for cutting and preparing food while the bottom shelves are large enough to store pots, tools, an extra propane tank, or other grilling equipment. Two large grease cups and a draw-out oil catch pan make it easy to clean.
Related: Best indoor electric grills
Best portable/tabletop – Weber Q1200 Liquid Propane Grill
Another Weber barbecue that makes the cut. This is the smallest of all grills in this list with 189 sq inch (0.12 sq m) total cooking area but with the same power and quality of full-sized Weber grills. The ignition button supports a quick and easy start and infinite burners valve keep full control while grilling. Definitely a good choice for small grill events.
Best with side burner – Char-Broil Classic 360 3-Burner Liquid Propane Gas Grill with Side Burner
If you want a great quality grill for a lower price, this is a great choice!
360 sq inch (0.23 sq m) of porcelain-coated grates with three burners is ample for cooking, and the extra 170 sq inch (0.10 sq m) swing-a-way rack is just perfect for warming. A side burner provides a secondary cooking space for sides or sauces. This is a great model to have as a first grill. It’s easy to assemble, works well and as mentioned it is reasonable priced.
Another good barbecue for the smaller budget. This model comes without ‘bells and whistles’ but with three burners, it provides enough heat and space to grill, and it has a large swing-away warming rack to keep cooked food warm. The two side shelves provide more workspace although we recommend being careful as the whole is a little shaky while cutting.