If you're new to grilling or thinking about upgrading your grill, choosing the best one can feel overwhelming, especially with the abundance of options on the market. It's hard to know whether to go for gas, charcoal, pellet grill or even a portable grill .
Gas models are a great place to start for new grillers, and they make an excellent upgrade, too. Gas grills are simple to use, easy to control and roomy enough to feed the whole family. These are three of the best.
WHAT Weber Genesis II E-335
THE COST $979
AVAILABLE FROM weber.com
This pricey grill comes with plenty of high-performance specs. With 513 square inches of primary cooking space powered by 39,000 BTUs, plus a fold-down warming rack and a 12,000-BTU side burner, you'll never want for cooking space. Two cabinet doors hide a two-shelf storage area below the grill for utensils and supplies. That means the propane tank is stored outside the grill, but the provided hanging fuel gauge and easy access felt like a bonus more than an eyesore.
The Genesis II E-335 is also one of Weber's iGrill 3 compatible models. This $100 accessory plugs into the front of the grill and houses up to four Bluetooth temperature probes. You can monitor the temperature probes via a companion app for iOS and Android, so you keep an eye on what's happening in your cooking area from a distance.
WHAT Char-Broil Commercial three-burner
THE COST $449
AVAILABLE FROM charbroil.com
Char-Broil uses what it calls Tru-Infrared, a set of perforated emitter plates that separate food from flame to evenly distribute heat and reduce flare ups. There were definitely less flare-ups compared to other models tested, but you won't be able to see the flame when you're lighting the grill or adjusting the temperature.
You'll get less power than the Weber at 25,500 BTUs over 420 square inches of primary cooking space, and there aren't any smart grilling features for remote monitoring. This Char-Broil model does have a side burner as well as tank storage behind two cabinet doors. Like Weber, it comes with a 10-year warranty.
WHAT Char-Griller E3072 three-burner
THE COST $249.99
AVAILABLE FROM chargriller.com
The most noticeable thing about this grill was how quickly it got up to temperature compared to other models. It held that heat well, too. Unfortunately, that became a hindrance in our testing. Burgers and chickens were too charred on the outside thanks to the hot cast iron cooking grate. If you do purchase this model, keep that in mind and start out with less heat. Ribs were better, perhaps thanks to the two smokestacks designed for even low and slow cooking.
There's no storage cabinet on this model. The tank sits behind a decorative front panel. That's an aesthetically pleasing compromise, but reaching through the side bars and around the panel to open and close the tank was frustratingly difficult. Despite those annoyances, this grill offers plenty of practicality and power at a reasonable price.
The following CNET staff contributed to this story: senior editor Brian Bennett, associate editor Molly Price and copy editor Jim Hoffman. For more reviews of personal technology products, visit cnet.com.