How to Choose a tabletop grill-Buying Guide

When you buy a kitchen grill, you must first decide whether you prefer charcoal, gas or electricity. Each offers its own pros and cons.

How to choose the right product from the above table grill test or comparison

The essentials in brief

Electric and gas grills have the advantage that the smoke development is low and heating up is relatively quick. So the food is cooked gently. But you need a gas bottle or a socket in reachable.

Charcoal grills may under no circumstances be used in rooms, it threatens the often underestimated risk of deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. Outside, this danger is minimal, but the crackling of the coal and classic barbecue fun score points.

The summer lures, the barbecue time comes. The times of charcoal scent, gas burners and electrical appliances start. With a table grill, you can entertain your guests directly at the table, without commuting between dining and barbecue area.

The handy devices are available in different versions: They are available both as a gas grill and as a charcoal grill, even if one first thinks of the electrically generated heat of the electric grill.

In our purchase advice for table grill comparison, SMOKEHOUSE BBQ summarize the main arguments for each category together and choose our favorite for table grill comparison winner. Whether this will also be your table grill winner?

1. What is a table grill and what types are there?

In the category table grills, you can differentiate different types of grill. In addition to the electric grills, there are also charcoal and gas grills that you can put on the table. Before we bring you closer to the advantages of each type of grill, we would like to briefly explain to you the advantages and disadvantages of a table grill :


  • Small and handy - flexible in use
  • Barbecuing at the table creates a special atmosphere
  • Low smoke development


  • Rather smaller grill areas for grilled food for 3 - 4 people
  • A table is needed as a site

1. Charcoal grill

High-quality table grill by LotusGrill, which is fired with charcoal.

The classic grill is, of course, the charcoal grill. The excitement that appears on the faces of people when the griller heaps up the coal in the fire bowl and the heating up of a ritual, is probably solitary.

In a table grill, the fire bowl of the charcoal grill is comparatively small, so that the charcoal is usually only for a short useful life of up to 90 minutes ready for use. But it is also fueled faster.

LotusGrill is a luxury brand in the field of table grills with charcoal. Lotus Grill's latest models feature a motorized fan that shortens the time it takes to heat up to less than 10 minutes. For the power supply, 4 AA batteries are used, which can be changed easily. In addition, the exterior body of the models of LotusGrill is only lukewarm, so that the grill can also be easily operated on the dining table.

1.2. Gas Grill

A high-quality gas table grill by Landmann.

A gas grill can be - quickly and easily - also because of the most existing lid - heat. The lid allows uncomplicated indirect grilling. In addition, the temperature can be regulated at the touch of a button. Some gas-powered products rely on lava stones, which act as heat storage.

The Weber brand is especially popular with gas barbecues. Cheaper models can be found, for example, in the also known for quality manufacturer Landmann. Even if the smoke levels of the models are rather low, gas grills are only for outdoor use on the balcony, terrace, veranda, garden or camping site.

1.3. Electric grill

Electric grills are certainly the most famous group of table grills.

Distinguish one can different construction methods: Thus it gives beside the "classical" electric table grills with aluminum catch basin under the heating spiral also so-called contact grills, Raclettes or "hot stones".

Common to all is the generation of heat by the electric heating coil, which converts about 2,000 watts of electrical power to adequately cook sausages and other grilled food.

Note: In "standard" electric barbecues in table top grill design, the heating coil is open under the grate, an aluminum drip tray underneath, in which one must fill in water. The water should catch the fat dripping from the meat or sausage.

With simple (and therefore particularly favorable) models, fat drips often on the hot spiral, which causes a similar unhealthy effect as the charcoal grill: The burning fat reacts to potentially carcinogenic substances and settles on the underside of the grill meat. Hotplates are therefore clearly the new trend, as shown for example by Tefal and Steba products.

1.4. Grill types in direct comparison - what is better?

Charcoal grill


  • Formation of smoke and roasted aromas
  • Barbecue Atmosphere
  • Can be used in gardens, campsites and parks


  • Creation of carcinogenic substances (eg benzopyrene) with direct grilling over the embers
  • High smoke pollution for the environment
  • Must not be used indoors
  • Slow heating up

Gas Grill


  • Only slight smoke nuisance
  • American barbecue atmosphere
  • Can be used in garden, campsites and parks
  • Healthy preparation - no formation of carcinogenic substances
  • Temperature control at the touch of a button - very fast heating
  • Suitable for direct and indirect grilling


  • Can not be used indoors
  • Relatively heavy grills
  • Rather high initial costs

Electric grill


  • Almost no smoke nuisance
  • Fn garden, campsites, parks and the apartment can be used
  • Healthy preparation - no formation of carcinogenic substances (with covered heating coil)
  • Simple temperature regulation


  • No real BBQ atmosphere
  • No roasted aromas

2. Purchase criteria for a table grill

To help you buy the best table grill, we help you to keep track of the important purchase criteria of the size of the grill over the materials used. Weigh off to choose your personal table grill winner:

2.1 Table Grill Type

First, select the type of grill after the place of installation or grilling: Only grasp open flame (coal or gas) when grilling outdoors.

Choose an electric table grill if you are having your BBQs in the apartment or on a covered balcony/terrace.

Attention: gas and charcoal grills may under no circumstances be used indoors! Danger to life due to carbon monoxide.

2.2 Grill size

The size of the grill depends on the number of people you want to serve with food at the same time. The bigger your BBQ is, the bigger the grill area needs to be. A table should give you the most important information for your barbecue.

2.3 Material of the grill grate

The grills are all stainless steel or die-cast aluminum with non-stick coating. Both materials are well suited for use as a grill pad. Especially with the electric table grills, you should make sure that the grill plate can be separated from the heating coil, so that if something burns, the grill surface can also be soaked. The grill surface is then easier to clean.

2.4 Material of the grill body

For the material of the grill body, there were major differences in table grill comparison 2019. Gas and charcoal grills are usually surrounded with powder-coated steel, which makes the grill weather-resistant. Better are only models made of stainless steel.

In electric table grills, the body is often made of sheet steel, handles and other applications often made of plastic. Stainless steel is used in blinds and other more cosmetic parts. Since the electric grills do not reach the heat of gas or coal burning, that's fine too.

2.5. Weight and dimensions

Especially if the table grill after the BBQ wants to be stowed, small dimensions and low weight are practical.

Gas grills put the most weight on the balance, also because of the obligatory gas cylinder.

Charcoal grills are fairly light and therefore portable, at least once the spent coal has been disposed of (wait until the coal has completely burned down and cooled down!).

The electric table grills are very light and compact due to the design and therefore also very portable. After cooling, such a model fits easily in most conventional kitchen cabinets. But remember that a power connection is mandatory for operation. So far you should not transport the electric grill.

3. Table grill tests on other consumer portals

In order for you to be fully informed about the subject of table-top grill, we would like to share with you what other consumer groups are saying about the topic

4. Questions and answers about the topic table grill

For particularly urgent users, we would like to answer the most important questions on table grilles as briefly as possible.

4.1 What is the water bowl for at the table grill?

The water bowl is used to collect fat and is placed for this purpose in the space provided under the heating coil. This prevents the burning of drowning fat.

While cheap table grills usually use thin steel grids and thus still some fat on the heating spiral land, the grids of high-quality electric grills are usually shaped so that the fat is passed to her and thus both the "hot iron" and the room air Unheaten is protected.

4.2 Which model is the best table grill for the apartment?

For the apartment, you should definitely use an electric table grill. The devices from our table grill comparison all have a sufficient power of 2000 watts with which the grill food is tanned properly.

A typical shortcoming: Simple electric table grills, especially at the corners, are not really warm, and grilling can be a bit difficult here.

4.3 How to use a table grill?

Gas and electric barbecues only need to be connected to the power outlet or gas cylinder for you to turn them on. If the grill has a lid, you should wait until it has become really warm. Often you can read off the temperature using the thermostat or a thermometer attached to the lid. Then you can take care of the proper preparation of steaks or fish.

When charcoal grill, you have to wait until the coal is properly annealed before you can lay the meat. This can take up to 30 minutes. Lotus Grill's tabletop grill has a built-in fan that ensures that it only takes 10 minutes to heat up.

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