Portable Gas BBQ Grills: Great Food on Location

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The long, warm days of summer are here, and everyone’s chasing the opportunity to get outdoors.

Vertical image of men enjoying a tailgating party together, with text in the middle and on the bottom of the image.

And what better way to enjoy the sunny weather than with outdoor cooking?

Whether you want to take your cookout on the go for a weekend camping trip, head out for a picnic with a basket that’s full of fresh goodies, or simply enjoy the evening on your patio, a portable gas grill is a good investment.

With its compact design, this portable appliance offers flexibility and convenience without any loss of quality.

Plus, they are much easier to keep clean than their portable charcoal-based brethren!

But with so many options available, and with such a wide range of features and prices to consider, how do you make the right choice to suit your needs?

To answer that question, let’s have a look at 13 of the top options currently available on the market, and some of the key considerations to review in smaller-sized gas barbecues.

Have a look now at 13 popular compact gas grills!

We’ve done the homework to provide you with a variety of options from different brands so you can make the best decision for your own individual needs.

1. Blackstone Tabletop 1813

If you are really dreaming, hoping, and wishing of a travel-sized gas grill with top-notch features that’s also a breeze to clean, you should seriously consider purchasing the Blackstone Tabletop Griddle!

A flat and solid griddle surface, in comparison to a cooking surface with grates, will help you wipe away any food remnants in a flash.

Here are the basic specs:

  • Weighs 48 pounds
  • Measures 13 by 23.5 by 23.5 inches (HxWxD)
  • 361-square-inch total cooking space
  • 24,000 total BTUs

The carbon steel griddle-top cooking surface measures 22.25 inches in width and 16.25 inches in depth.

Image of the Blackstone Tabletop Griddle.

Blackstone Tabletop 1813, available from BBQ Guys

Not only will you be able to prepare all the classics like burgers, steaks, and hot dogs, but the griddle design also allows you to cook a wide range of other food items you couldn’t cook on standard grill grates.

Think of all the pancakes you can stack high, and sunny-side-up eggs you can fry for breakfast in the morning while you’re camping!

With two independently controlled “H”-style burners, the griddle features even heat distribution across the entire cooking surface while allowing you to adjust the heat to create two distinct cooking zones.

Four feet on the bottom of the base help keep the grill sturdy, and elevate it at a safe distance from the surface you’ve placed it on.

A patented rear grease management system helps you collect and dispose of grease. Push it through a small rectangular opening at the back of the griddle, and the grease drops into a drip tray below. The drip tray is fitted with a thin, disposable aluminum foil basket.

One aluminum foil basket comes with your purchase. Additional disposable baskets are available in a 30-pack set on Amazon.

Blackstone Disposable Aluminum Foil Baskets, 30-pack, available from Amazon

The front panel is made of stainless steel. This is where the heat control dials are displayed.

A threaded brass regulator connector screws onto the side of the griddle, which you then use to connect a 16.4-ounce propane tank. Propane is included with your purchase.

If you wish to use a larger propane tank than the recommended 16.4-ounce size, you will need to purchase the required adapter hose separately.

The powder-coated steel hood helps to maintain the heat of the grill, and will also keep the griddle safe and clean when not in use. It is secured to the rear of the griddle, and is easy to lift by its stainless steel handle.

The grill functions with a piezoelectric ignition. This style of ignition relies on a form of electric charge which hits a crystal to create a spark, an option favored for its quick response that’s often used in portable gas grills, gas kitchen torches, and certain types of lighters.

Assembly is required upon receipt.

A one-year warranty is provided from the date of purchase to cover any defective parts, workmanship, and finishes.

Interested? Check customer reviews and current prices before you buy at Amazon, BBQ Guys, or Wayfair.

2. Broil King Porta-Chef 320 952654

Made in North America, the Porta-Chef 320 includes many features unique to the Porta-Chef series of grills.

Before we briefly review those key features, here are the chief specifications:

  • Weighs 45 pounds
  • Measures 43.5 by 39.5 by 26.5 inches (HxWxD)
  • 294-square-inch primary cooking space
  • 426-square-inch total cooking space
  • 21,000 total BTUs

The cookbox is made of therma-cast aluminum, with a stainless steel lid. The durable resin side shelves on either side of the cook box are able to fold and drop down when not in use.

Image of the Broil King Travel Chef.

Broil King Porta-Chef 320 952654, available from BBQ Guys

The grill and 4 standing legs are finished with a powder-coated black epoxy paint, and smaller components like the control knobs and handles are made of rust-resistant, zinc-coated steel.

There are three large handles on the cookbox – one to open the lid, and two on either side to help you and a partner carry it. Don’t forget that this weighs close to 50 pounds!

A thermometer is located on the lid of the cookbox for accurate temperature readings.

When not in use or when you’re traveling, the four standing legs are detachable, and can be fastened securely and stored on the bottom of the cookbox for easy, compact transport.

The main cast iron cooking grid surface is 12.25 inches in width and 24 inches in length. Directly above this main cooking surface is a smaller, chrome-coated warming rack.

There are 3 stainless steel tube burners underneath the cooking grid, providing efficient heat throughout the entire grill. You are able to control the heat of each burner, using three separate 180° control knobs located on the front of the grill.

Stainless steel Flav-R-Wave sheets cover and protect the tube burners, catching and vaporizing any drippings from the food. The sheets also help to evenly distribute heat from the tube burners.

The fast-acting Sure-Lite electronic ignition system operates with a push-button ignitor and an electrode. Keep in mind that this operates on a AAA battery – one is included with purchase, but you will need to have a supply on hand in the future.

The grill is designed to be used with a 20-pound tank of propane gas, which does not come with purchase. You will need an adapter if you want to use a smaller propane canister.

Assembly is required upon delivery.

The Porta-Chef 320 comes with a 10-year warranty on the cookbox, 3 years on the burners, and 2 years on all remaining parts and paint. The warranties cover workmanship or defective parts.

Image of the Broil King Cart.

Broil King Cart for Porta-Chef 320 Grills, available from BBQ Guys

If you want to complete the look, you can purchase a cart specifically designed for this model, available from BBQ Guys.

The cart is made of steel, and is finished with a black epoxy paint. It can fit one propane tank, and features two wheels for easy maneuverability. Once the standing legs are detached, you can secure the cookbook on top of the cart.

Seriously considering this model? Before you buy, be sure to check customer reviews and prices on Amazon or at BBQ Guys now.

3. Char-Broil 465133010

Maybe you’re not looking for anything too fancy or bulky – all you want is an affordable, small, lightweight, and reliable appliance you can take with you on camping trips, bike rides, and hiking adventures.

We found the perfect option for you – you’ll have an instant love connection with the Char-Broil Portable Propane Gas Grill 465133010!

Here are the main specs of this tabletop model:

  • Weighs 11 pounds
  • Measures 15 by 24.1 by 12.3 inches (HxWxD)
  • 190-square-inch total cooking space
  • 11,000 total BTUs

The three handles, one on the top of the lid, and two on either side of the cookbox, are resistant to heat.

Image of the Char-Broil Single Burner.

Char-Broil 465133010, available on Wayfair

The push-button ignitor is located on the side of the grill, powered by a 1-pound propane or LP cylinder which you can leave attached for convenient portability. This does not come with purchase.

The cookbox is made of aluminized steel, with a high-temperature finish to prevent rust.

The single burner and heat shield are both constructed of stainless steel.

The one-piece cooking grate is coated in rust-resistant porcelain, a material that also helps with easy cleaning.

The metal legs that keep the cookbox stable and elevated at a safe distance from the work surface include a simple, yet thoughtful, design feature to ensure the best compact transportation.

When the grill is not in use, you’ll really admire how the legs fold up and over the lid to keep the lid tightly secured to the bottom of the cookbox. After this quick move, you can now carry the entire grill by the top handle – which is easy to do, since this lightweight model only weighs 10 pounds!

When the legs are folded, the total height is 9.5 inches – good to know for storage purposes!

Assembly is required upon delivery.

Char-Broil warrants all parts on this model to be free from defects in workmanship and materials for 90 days from the date of purchase.

Read reviews and check prices on Wayfair.

4. Coleman RoadTrip 285

The Coleman RoadTrip 285 Portable Stand-Up Propane Grill brings a fun, colorful, and modern style to a travel-sized appliance.

Here are the basic specifications:

  • Weighs 47 pounds
  • Measures 46 by 35 by 18 inches (HxWxD)
  • 285-square-inch total cooking space
  • 20,000 total BTUs

The grill is attached to a stand with quick-fold scissor-style legs. Two of the four legs have wheels attached to the bottom to help you move the grill, while the other two legs have feet on the bottom to keep the grill in place when stationary.

Coleman RoadTrip 285, Orange, available on Amazon

When folded for storage, the grill resembles and operates like a roll-away suitcase. Grasp the feet like handles to easily roll the grill on its wheels.

The lid includes a built-in thermometer, so you are able to accurately monitor the temperature inside and make any necessary adjustments.

Three adjustable dial burners give you the most precise control over your heat in three independently adjustable cooking zones.

The two-piece cast iron cooking grates are coated in porcelain.

If you want to expand your options with this grill, the grates are interchangeable with compatible RoadTrip series cooking services from Coleman, which may be purchased separately.

Try the flattop griddle that fits the entire width of the cooking surface, available from Amazon. A chrome-plated steel stove grate is also available from Amazon, designed for use with a single 12-inch pot or pan on half of the cooking surface.

The grill also features two collapsible side tables, and a removable pan to catch cooking grease.

The RoadTrip 285 is currently available on Amazon in red, black, blue, green, or orange.

The Instastart ignition offers a push-button operation, with no lighters or matches required.

This grill uses a 1-pound propane gas cylinder. With the appropriate adapter tools, it can be converted to accommodate a 20-pound propane tank.

Available on Amazon, purchase the Coleman Propane Gas Hose and Adapter to safely connect a 20-pound tank to the grill.

A 3-year limited warranty is included with this model from the date of purchase, covering defects in material and workmanship.

Check customer reviews, prices, and available colors now on Amazon.

5. Cuisinart Grillster CGG-059

A convenient and lightweight option for running around to your favorite parks, beaches, trails, and campsites, the Cuisinart Grillster is ready for any on-the-go journey!

Let’s review the basic specs:

  • Weighs 10 pounds
  • Measures 11.5 by 10 by 19 inches (HxWxD)
  • 146-square-inch total cooking space
  • 8,000 total BTUs

The 9.4-by-15.5-inch enameled steel cooking grate is safe to clean in the dishwasher, so you don’t have to waste any extra energy cleaning it by hand once the barbecue party is over and you’re exhausted!

Image of the Cuisinart Grillster.

Cuisinart Grillster CGG-059, available from BBQ Guys

The steel lid is hinged and features a thick, long handle in the front, helping you easily open and close it to maintain the heat in a safe, contained cooking area.

When the lid is in its closed and locked position, the handle also doubles as a convenient way to carry the Grillster by just one hand when transporting it.

There is a push-button ignition on the side of the grill to operate a single burner, which works with a 1-pound propane canister. The canister is not provided with your purchase.

A standard 20-pound propane or LP tank may be used instead, as long as you buy the appropriate adapter hose.

A removable drip tray captures anything that falls underneath the grate as you are grilling.

The two sturdy, collapsible legs help keep the bottom of the grill elevated at a safe distance from your work surface.

Cuisinart provides a 3-year warranty, covering any defects in parts and workmanship.

Assembly of this model is quick, which Cuisinart describes as taking just 5 minutes with no tools required.

Review prices and features now at Amazon, BBQ Guys, and Wayfair.

6. Cuisinart Petite Gourmet ‎CGG-180

The Petite Gourmet Portable Tabletop Gas Grill is another stellar option from Cuisinart for those looking for a compact, high-performance appliance.

Here are its specifications:

  • Weighs 17 pounds
  • Measures 13 by 18 by 12 inches (HxWxD)
  • 145-square-inch total cooking space
  • 5,500 total BTUs

The 9.75-by-15.5-inch cooking grate is made of steel with a porcelain enamel coating for easy cleaning, which you can clean by hand with warm, soapy water or clean in your dishwasher.

Image of the Cuisinart Petite Gourmet.

Cuisinart Petite Gourmet CGG-180, available from BBQ Guys

Two folding legs keep the grill in a sturdy position, with thick feet on the bottom of each leg to ensure stability.

And when you are on the go traveling from campsite to beach, there is a latch to keep the lid securely in place when you are transporting the grill.

When the legs are folded inward and the lid is securely latched, you can then use the handle to carry the entire grill in one hand.

The stainless steel single burner ignites with a twist-to-start electronic ignition located in the front of the grill. It connects to a 1-pound propane cylinder in the back of the grill, which is not included with purchase.

It’s possible to use a standard 20-pound propane or LP tank, as long as you buy the appropriate conversion hose.

A 3-year warranty is provided from the original purchase date, which covers any defects in parts and workmanship.

This is another simple 5-minute assembly option from Cuisinart – the firebox is already fully assembled, so all you need to do is remove any packing materials from the inside of the firebox, properly install the single cooking grate, and slide in the drip tray on the bottom.

This grill is currently available in black, red, and silver.

Be sure to look over customer reviews, prices, and all the features at Wayfair and BBQ Guys before you buy!

7. Napoleon Phantom TravelQ Pro285

The Napoleon TravelQ Phantom Pro285 is a perfect choice when you are searching for a freestanding grill with an edgy, luxurious look and multiple features – but one that’s still easy to travel with!

Let’s go over some specs:

  • Weighs 53.5 pounds
  • Measures 39.75 by 44.25 by 20.25 inches (HxWxD)
  • 285-square-inch total cooking space
  • 12,000 total BTUs

The grill has an all-black matte finish on the cart, badging, handles, and both side shelves. The cast aluminum lid also has a black matte finish.

The grill features two shelves on either side, to provide you with practical work areas and places to set down utensils and ingredients. Each shelf also features two hooks for hanging utensils.

Napoleon Phantom TravelQ Pro285, available from Amazon

There are two separate stainless steel burners controlled by dials in the front of the grill, giving you precise temperature control across a range of potential cooking options, from slow-roasting or smoking using a gentler heat to powerful, high-heat searing.

It is powered by Napoleon’s Instant Jetfire Ignition system, which shoots a single jet of flame to light each burner individually. This is possible with a specially built cross-light bracket positioned between the burners.

You will need to use a 1-lb propane canister, though you can use a larger 20-lb propane canister with the correct connectors. The canister is not included with purchase.

A temperature gauge is located on the lid of the cookbox for clear and accurate temperature readings.

The 14.5-by-21.25-inch cooking grate is made of cast iron with a porcelain coating. The grids are designed with a wave shape to create distinctive sear marks. You are able to remove and disassemble the cooking grate in two separate pieces.

There is also a removable stainless steel warming rack – when installed, its hinged design allows you to flip it back when not in use so you can have full access to the main cooking grate.

This X-shaped scissor cart model, with all-terrain wheels on two of the four feet, and sturdy propane tank straps, is a convenient model that allows you to bring professional grilling with you when you’re on the go.

It becomes very compact when folded and locked in its upright position, and can then be wheeled like a roll-away suitcase when you need to move it.

Assembly is required upon delivery. Once assembled, the grill and shelves are permanently affixed to the scissor cart.

Napoleon provides a 10-year limited warranty for the TravelQ 285 series models. The company warrants that the grill will be free from defects in materials and workmanship from the date of purchase. Separate warranties are also included for individual components of the grill, ranging in length from 2 to 10 years. For a complete warranty breakdown, we advise you to review Napoleon’s warranty policy.

Review everything, from customer comments to materials to prices, on Amazon. You can also find this model at BBQGuys.

8. Nexgrill Fortress 820-BC002

Simple and no-nonsense, the Nexgrill Fortress 1-Burner Cast Aluminum Table Top Gas Grill will go wherever you go on every adventure!

Review the basic specifications now:

  • Weighs 15.65 pounds
  • Measures 13.5 by 23.3 by 16.25 inches (HxWxD)
  • 203-square-inch total cooking space
  • 10,000 total BTUs

The single burner is made from 304-grade stainless steel, and operates on a piezoelectric ignition system. The grill uses a standard 1-pound propane canister.

Image of the Nexgrill Fortress Single Burner.

Nexgrill Fortress 820-BC002, available on Wayfair

The firebox and domed lid are made of a heavy-duty cast aluminum material that is resistant to corrosion. The lid features a large handle, a helpful detail for easy lifting.

The firebox rests on four feet for a sturdy base, and the handles on either side of the firebox will help you carry it from place to place.

The cast iron cooking grate has a porcelain coating, offering high heat retention and the ability to create beautiful sear marks. There is a removable drip box located on the bottom of the firebox.

Additional features are kept to a minimum with this particular model – you won’t find a temperature gauge, or a lock for the lid. And there is no dial to adjust the temperature of the single burner.

A 5-year limited warranty is provided for the main burner and cooking grid, covering any defects in workmanship and materials. All other parts have a limited 2-year warranty.

Assembly is required upon delivery, and you will need a wrench and a screwdriver to put this model together.

Check customer reviews and prices now at Amazon and Wayfair.

9. Pit Boss Two-Burner 75275

Be the boss of your culinary adventures this summer with the Pit Boss Portable Stainless Steel Two-Burner Gas Grill.

Take a quick look at the specifications:

  • Weighs 22 pounds
  • Measures 14.7 by 18.5 by 22.9 inches (HxWxD)
  • 274-square-inch total cooking space
  • 20,000 total BTUs

If you prefer the look of stainless steel for your appliances, you’ll love the features of this grill – the body, handle, flame tamers, burners, grease tray, cooking grid, and legs are all made of stainless steel.

Pit Boss Two-Burner 75275, available on Amazon

There are 2 independently controlled burners for optimal cooking versatility, both with an output of 10,000 BTUs.

The single-piece cooking grid is easy to remove and set back in place. There is a dome thermometer on the lid, and four folding legs on the bottom of the body.

Latches on the sides of the lid will keep it securely in place when not in use, and as you are carrying it on the go.

Unlike many other portable models, this grill is not designed for use with a 1-pound propane tank. It actually includes a 38-inch hose-connected regulator, intended for use with a 20-pound propane tank.

This is a perfect option for those of you who wish to grill with a portable model on a regular basis, without having to change out a smaller canister more often.

If you want to use this specific grill with a smaller canister, you will need to purchase a separate adapter.

You may want to think twice about purchasing this grill if you want to travel lightly, won’t be grilling too often, or don’t want to go through the extra steps of purchasing separate accessories if you wish to use a smaller propane canister.

If you favor travel convenience rather than temperature strength, longevity of gas power, and versatility, Pit Boss does also sell a smaller single-burner portable gas grill that uses a 1-pound canister fitted directly to the body. The Pit Boss Stainless Steel One-Burner Gas Grill is available now on Amazon.

Because Two-Burner Gas Grill from Pit Boss is mostly pre-assembled, it should only take about five minutes upon delivery to complete the final touches. You just need to place the flame tamers, cooking grid, and control knobs in the appropriate spots.

A 5-year limited warranty on the stainless steel burners and a 1-year warranty on all other parts are provided to cover any defects.

Check customer reviews and prices on Amazon now.

10. Royal Gourmet PD1300N

For the ultimate temperature control on a flat top griddle, consider purchasing Royal Gourmet’s PD Series 3-Burner Portable Tabletop Gas Griddle.

Let’s talk specs:

  • Weighs 30.2 pounds
  • Measures 9.7 by 25 by 18.1 inches (HxWxD)
  • 319-square-inch total cooking space
  • 26,400 total BTUs

The three independently-controlled stainless steel burners are all powered by the same piezoelectric ignition system. Each burner has an output of 8,800 BTUs.

Image of the Royal Gourmet Griddle.

Royal Gourmet PD1300N, available on Wayfair

Manage the heat level using three separate control knobs located on the stainless steel control panel.

Storage is easy and safe, and a water-resistant cover with sun-protective coating is included with purchase.

With an impressively large 23.82-by-13.39-inch cooking surface, you can prepare big batches of your favorite meals, perfect for family camping trips or tailgate parties.

Three tall walls on the griddle prevent any unwanted grease splashes from escaping. There’s also a sliding removable grease trap that will capture any residue from cooking.

The porcelain-enameled cooking grid creates a nonstick, even cooking surface that’s easy to remove and clean.

Four feet on the bottom of the appliance keep the cook surface level and sturdy.

This is another portable model that is designed for use with a 20-pound propane tank, with a 35.4-inch fuel hose included with purchase. If you want to use a smaller 1-pound canister, you will need to buy an adapter hose.

Some assembly is required upon delivery.

Royal Gourmet warrants this grill to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for 1 year from the date of purchase. And if the stainless steel burners rust through within 5 years from the date of purchase, they will replace them free of charge.

Review prices and customer reviews on Amazon and Wayfair.

11. Solaire Anywhere SOL-IR17B

Made in the USA, Solaire offers a wide range of infrared grilling equipment – including the Solaire Anywhere SOL-IR17B, a portable gas grill option!

Here are some basic specifications to know about this particular model:

  • Weighs 20 pounds
  • Measures 12 by 21 by 13 inches (HxWxD)
  • 140-square-inch total cooking space
  • 14,000 total BTUs

The grill is made from a thick 20-gauge, 304 commercial-grade stainless steel and uses a 1-pound propane cylinder, though you can convert to a larger tank with a separately purchased adapter.

Image of the Solaire Anywhere.

Solaire Anywhere SOL-IR17B, available from BBQ Guys

The infrared burner operates on a push-button electronic spark ignition, powered by one AAA battery, which comes with your purchase.

The 14-by-10-inch grilling grate is designed with V-shaped stainless steel grids, which help to capture any grease to reduce potential flare-ups.

There are two handles, one on either side, for easy carrying when you need to move the grill. Two latches secure the hood to the base of the grill when not in use.

Four adjustable leveling feet on the bottom allow you to secure a stable base, adapting to any kind of work surface.

A carrying bag is included with purchase. It features three pockets, so you can carry a one-pound propane tank in each pocket.

Minimal assembly is required upon delivery to attach the regulator, handles, and adjustable feet. The company estimates about a 5-minute total assembly time.

There is a 1-year warranty provided from the date of purchase against any defects in materials and workmanship.

Get all the information you need before you buy on BBQ Guys. You can also review a similar design on Amazon, with the addition of a warming rack included.

12. Weber Q2200

The Weber Q2200 Gas Grill features a single burner, porcelain-enameled cast iron grates, and a cast aluminum body and lid – all in a compact design!

Review some of its basic specs:

  • Weighs 43.5 pounds
  • Measures 15.5 by 51.4 by 19.5 inches (HxWxD)
  • 280-square-inch total cooking space
  • 12,000 total BTUs

It has a comparatively large cooking surface. The enamel-coated grills mean fast cleanup, and they are very durable.

The titanium-colored cast aluminum body is a heavy-duty feature, meaning no rusting and no warping to worry about – but it still remains lightweight enough for easy transport.

Weber Q200, available on Amazon

The single stainless steel burner operates on a 1-pound propane canister. You ignite the burner with an electronic ignition, powered by one AAA battery that’s included with your purchase.

The burner valve control helps you adjust the flame strength of the burner.

Side tables on either side of the grill help keep small serving dishes, ingredients, and tools within the cook’s reach. They both fold down for compact storage when the grill is not in use.

When folded, the side tables reveal two handles that you can use for transport.

Be aware that the side tables fold inside the grill, both resting over the cooking grate – so they should only be folded for storage when the grill has cooled completely to prevent warping or melting.

There is a built-in thermometer located on the lid, to help you clearly monitor the grill’s internal temperature.

A removable drip pan located on the bottom of the grill makes it easy to clean up and dispose of grease and other residue.

Weber Aluminum Drip Pans, 10-pack, available on Amazon

While the grill does include one disposable aluminum drip pan liner, you should buy a backup set. You can purchase a set of 10 Weber Aluminum Drip Pans on Amazon.

Weber also has an optional collapsible cart with two wheels that you can purchase as a separate accessory to give you the convenience of wheeled portability, and which allows you to operate the Q2200 without having to find a table or other surface to place it on. Find it now on Amazon.

Weber Q Portable Cart, Black, available on Amazon

For the grill, some assembly is required upon delivery.

Weber provides a 5-year warranty against rust-through or burn-through for the cookbox, lid, burner, cooking grates, and plastic components. The warranty also covers any defects in materials and workmanship.

Check reviews now at Amazon, BBQ Guys, and Wayfair.

13. Weber Traveler 9010001

Do you prefer not to have to buy separate pieces for your travel-sized cooking gear? With the Weber Traveler, you can get all the benefits of a Weber grill in a portable, compact format with an attached cart, no separate purchase required.

You can review basic specs right here:

  • Weighs 47 pounds
  • Measures 37.2 by 43.6 by 23 inches (HxWxD)
  • 320-square-inch total cooking space
  • 13,000 total BTUs

You’ll notice many similar features between the Weber Traveler and the Weber Q2200:

The cooking grid is made of porcelain-enameled cast iron, the single stainless steel burner operates with a push-button electronic ignition using a 1-pound propane canister, the control burner valve gives you freedom to adjust the temperature, and the built-in thermometer helps you monitor the heat.

Image of the Weber Traveler in black.

Weber Traveler 9010001, Black, available on BBQ Guys

The Traveler also has the same removable drip pan feature to catch grease and residue.

But the Traveler excels beyond the Q2200 with its compact cart design!

This grill is designed with quick and easy setup in mind – it can be set up and folded down with just one hand.

When you’re ready to move, the grill folds flat with the cart – traveling and storage possibilities are endless here, since it is designed to take up minimal space in your garage or the trunk of a car.

When the grill is in its compact position, the lid will automatically latch and lock – no extra steps required!

With the cart’s two wheels and handle placement, you will be able to wheel this compact grill around like a suitcase.

There are also hooks on the front of the grill, a convenient feature for hanging your tools and utensils. A side table provides a suitable space to spread out your ingredients.

Some assembly is required upon delivery.

The warranty for the Weber Traveler is slightly different than the Q2200. A 5-year warranty against rust-through or burn-through is provided for the cookbox and lid, and a 3-year warranty covers the stainless steel burner and the cast iron grates. All plastic components and any other remaining parts are covered by a 2-year warranty. All warranties cover any defects in workmanship and materials.

Currently, the Weber Traveler is available in a few different colors: black, blue, and red. The color of the cart for all of these options is silver.

There is also a “Stealth” edition, with the grill and cart designed in all black. You can see this option on BBQ Guys and Amazon.

Read customer comments and check prices and colors on Amazon and at BBQ Guys now.

Features and Questions to Ask

Now that we have reviewed our top choices, we’ll help to make sure you’re choosing the right one to fit your specific needs!

Vertical image of two woman tailgating at a party outside.

In the following sections, we will review noteworthy features of portable gas grills. Before we begin, it’s helpful to determine how, when, and where your grilling will be done.

This applies to all sizes, of course, and not just portable options!

But with a travel-sized model, there are a couple of extra variables that come into play.

So, let’s start with questions along these lines:

  • How often do you estimate you’ll use the barbecue over the course of a year?
  • Roughly how many people will be served when you grill?
  • Do you need a unit that’s portable for traveling, camping, or tailgating?
  • Do you need a unit that’s very lightweight to bring with you on hikes?
  • Will it need to fit in the storage compartment of your RV?
  • What are your preferred grill materials?
  • Are you simply looking for a compact model to use at home? Would a bigger, full-sized version suit you better?
  • What price range are you considering?

Once you’ve come up with an idea of just how often, for how many, and where your outdoor grilling will be done, you’ll have a better understanding of your own personal requirements for a new appliance.

Main Features

It’s time to look at some of the specific features that will aid you in meeting your requirements.

Accessories

Accessories may or may not be included depending on the brand and model you choose, so you might need to consider this extra cost.

Utensils, adapters, carriers, and a stand or cart will all add to the final cost, so make sure there’s room in your budget.

Assembly

If you have to do some assembly yourself, is it going to be a hassle for you? Or would you rather choose an option with minimal parts that you have to tinker with yourself?

You don’t want to be drilling holes to make it fit together… particularly if you don’t know how to use a drill!

Consider how much of the unit is pre-assembled, and whether there’s a user-friendly manual available with clear instructions.

As a thorough preview of what you will need to do for assembly, you can often find a downloadable version of the manual online from the manufacturer.

BTUs

British Thermal Units (BTUs) determine the output of gas to heat up your grill.

Horizontal image of a man cooking while on a dock next to the water.

Theoretically, the higher the number of BTUs, the hotter the maximum temperature will be.

Specifically for a grill, the BTU rating is indicative of the maximum amount of heat available for the main grill area and main burners only. It typically does not cover side burners or warming trays.

And you’ll want to have a close look at this rating – some manufacturers will lump all the burner output ratings together to make it look like a bigger number. In fact, our reviews above reflect this, but we also include a per-burning rating in the details to follow.

But the BTU rating doesn’t get the final say in determining how hot the model will get…

An inefficient unit, made of thin materials that can’t hold the heat as well, will lose a lot of those thermal units while heating in an outdoor setting.

As a result, you’ll need a model with a higher BTU output to grill a steak in the same amount of time.

An appliance with a very high BTU rating for its size may be trying to compensate for lightweight components, such as the grill, lid, or open side construction not being able to hold the heat.

And one with low BTUs may take longer than usual to preheat, or it may have slow recovery times after loading the cooking area with food.

Burners

For gas grills, look for burners that are made of stainless steel, since aluminum will burn out and cast iron will eventually rust.

Horizontal image of a group of fans tailgating.

Stainless with an 18-8 rating, or 304 grade, is the best for corrosion resistance.

To protect the burners from dripping grease, most gas grills will have a metal deflector between the grate and burners. This also helps to produce more even heat, reducing hot spots on the grate.

Fuel Tanks

Most portable gas models run on a 1-pound propane or LP canister, which is a convenient size for a couple of meals when you are out camping for the weekend, or going on a picnic.

But in the long run, it’s often more economical to purchase an adapter kit that can be fitted to a standard 20-pound propane tank.

Image of the Weber Adapter Hose.

Weber 6501 Q Propane Adapter Hose, available on BBQ Guys

The adapter kit is another extra cost to consider, so factor in that cost if it’s not included in the purchase price. Some models, as described above, also come equipped with a 20-pound tank hookup, and converters are required if you wish to size down instead.

Many brands make their own adapter kits that exclusively fit their own name-brand gas grills – make sure you research whether an adapter kit that you’re considering can only be used for a certain brand, or can be used universally.

For example, this Weber 6501 Q Propane Adapter Hose, available on BBQ Guys, allows you to use a 20-pound propane gas tank, but it can only be fitted to certain portable Weber grills, like the Weber Q2200 reviewed earlier.

Ignition

Most gas grills are now equipped with spark-ignition systems.

Some of these systems run on a battery, and others will use the friction of a push button or dial to kindle a spark.

A piezoelectric ignition is one such popular system in gas grills, relying on a form of electric charge which hits a crystal to create a spark.

If you don’t want to fuss with always having an arsenal of batteries on hand, look for the grills with a piezoelectric ignition system.

For times when the starter fails, look for reliable backup features – this is usually provided in the form of a manual ignition hole, which will take a candle lighter or long, wooden fireplace matches.

Materials

The best materials for gas grills and the cooking grates are cast aluminum, cast iron, enameled steel, and stainless steel.

Horizontal image of a man handing a child a hotdog at a campsite.

Stainless steel or aluminum cooking grates work very well, and they are easy to clean.

However, regardless of the quality of the stainless steel or aluminum, after time it will discolor from the barbecue heat and exposure to the elements. And the thinner the material used, the quicker it will lose its initial good looks.

Cast iron is extremely durable, and cast iron grates with no coating are excellent for holding and conducting heat.

One main complaint with cast iron is that its heavier weight can make quick and easy transport more difficult.

Another major concern with uncoated cast iron is that it will rust if not properly cared for. Grates will need a treatment of oil – a film of cooking spray applied to both sides after cleaning is an easy solution, but you should consult the owner’s manual that comes with your particular appliance for important care instructions.

Heat-treated porcelain-coated cast iron is superb, because it minimizes the potential for rust. However, this type of material can crack or chip, which might become a common issue if you move and change locations often. If portability is an important factor, you may want to reconsider it in favor of stainless steel material.

Quality of Construction

Lightweight materials and parts are important for transporting portable grills; however, sometimes lightweight can also mean flimsy in terms of construction.

Horizontal image of men tailgating during a sports event.

Because we’re dealing with flammable liquids, safety is a top concern. So, the more stable the barbecue and stand, the better.

Make sure you choose a strong, stable product – you don’t want it tipping and injuring family members or friends.

Take a look at the overall weight of the model you are considering purchasing – typically, the heavier the item, the sturdier it will be.

If possible, seek out your preferred models in person before buying. Test for stability by gently pushing against it from different angles, to see if it’s unstable or prone to tipping.

Units that are welded will have greater stability than those held together with nuts and bolts or pins.

Check working areas and all surfaces for sharp edges and corners that can cut or that clothing, oven mitts, or aprons can get snagged on. Test the handle to ensure that there’s enough grip room – you don’t want to burn your knuckles on the lid when you’re opening it.

In terms of construction, you get what you pay for. So have a look at the quality of the materials, the heft and gauge of the metal used, and the welds or nuts and bolts.

If you’re buying an accessory cart, is it sturdy enough to be bumped against without a disaster? How many plastic parts are there? And what about hinges or any moving parts – do they look durable enough to last a few years?

These are all questions to seriously review!

Shelves

On portable units, the shelving is often detachable, or it folds or slides in and out of the way when it’s not in use.

Check to see how sturdy the shelves are. You probably won’t need them to hold a 20-pound turkey, but they need to be able to withstand the weight of a plate of food, and hold the sauces and utensils as well.

Some models have one built-in prep table, while others have two with one on either side of the grill. And hooks to hang tools and utensils are a useful bonus feature, so they don’t take up precious space elsewhere.

Surface Cooking Area

If you plan to cook an entire meal on the grate, you’ll need more space than you might for grilling up a few burgers.

Horizontal image of preparing assorted vegetables on a barbecue.

And of course, the larger the size, the more expensive they get, and the more difficult to potentially transport or store.

A cooking grate that is 200 square inches will hold approximately 12 burger patties at once – based on an average patty being roughly 4 inches in diameter – with adequate room left between them for proper cooking.

Or, this is enough space for a 2-person meal consisting of 2 steaks that weigh 8 to 10 ounces, with 2 baked potatoes and 2 ears of corn.

So, about 100 square inches per person is a good guesstimate to help you to determine how much space you might need.

If you wish to optimize your space, do your research to seek out travel-sized models that can also accommodate a small warming tray. This may be included, or available for separate purchase.

Temperature Controls

Most portable gas units will only have one temperature control knob or gauge and a single burner, due to their size. And some smaller appliances might not have any option to control the temperature – it’s either off or on.

If you’re considering a model that has dual burners, look for dual temperature controls to accommodate two different temperature zones when cooking.

These models are often heavier – keep that in mind if you’d rather travel lightly!

Transport Features

Always on the go? If so, pick a model that is self-contained with secure lids and latches, and minimal parts or accessories.

Horizontal image a family enjoying camping and eating together.

For compact models in particular, measure to see how easily the unit can be moved in and out  of your trunk or RV.

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you are comparing models:

  • Does the lid have a latch for secure traveling?
  • Will it sit flat or does it have to stand on end?
  • Does it come with a travel case?
  • Is any tricky disassembly required to move it?
  • Do you need a model with wheels for easier movement?
  • Will the collapsed dimensions fit in your trunk or storage compartment?

Ultimately, you want a model that is just as fit for travel as you are!

If you see yourself grilling frequently throughout multiple camping trips each year, a model that is intentionally designed for use with a 20-pound propane canister – without needing an adapter – may be a smarter purchasing decision if you have the space and ability to carry it.

Portable Is the Way to Go When You’re on the Go

Phew! You’ve made it through our roundup of the best portable gas grill models!

Horizontal image of women preparing burgers on a barbecue.

Sorry we kept you inside this long – we know you can’t wait to start your summertime adventures and cook outside!

We hope you have gained a lot of new information, and perhaps even a new grilling perspective, from this guide. Did you select which models you want to check out first?

With any of these top choices, you’re going to enjoy the convenience of thoughtful design for successful outdoor cooking when you’re camping, kayaking, swimming, hiking, picnicking, tailgating, and more.

Do you have any more questions about portable gas grills? Do you own one of these models, and can add a few more pointers? Leave a comment below!

Are you planning to purchase a completely new lineup of outdoor cooking equipment? Let’s keep shopping! Read more reviews of other essential barbecue appliances:

© Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Uncredited photos via Shutterstock. Product photos provided by Amazon, BBQ Guys, and Wayfair. Originally published on May 14, 2015. With additional writing and editing by Nikki Cervone. Last updated on July 29, 2023.

About Lorna Kring

Recently retired as a costume specialist in the TV and film industry, Lorna now enjoys blogging on contemporary lifestyle themes. A bit daft about the garden, she’s particularly obsessed with organic tomatoes and herbs, and delights in breaking bread with family and friends.

28 thoughts on “Portable Gas BBQ Grills: Great Food on Location”

  1. I’m going to need one that will get used here a few times this summer, and can be taken camping with us. The truth is, durability isn’t necessarily an issue for me. I really just need something cheap that gets use a few times a year. I’m going to have to let the person who uses it actually take a look and see what he wants! Thank you!!

    Reply
    • That’s an interesting point kana_marie, and there’s lots of inexpensive options available that would be good for only one season’s use.

      Reply
  2. That RV mounting rack on the Camco Olympian is pretty sweet. Each of these seems to be good quality, and it seems there are plenty of good options for anyone in the market for a portable grill. I’dd like to buy one in the near future, but I’m not sure yet if I’ll be purchasing a portable or standard unit. I wasn’t aware portable grills had come so far, so I have a lot to think about before making my decision.

    Reply
    • There was quite a few comments on the mounting rack, and it certainly seemed to be a selling point. And you’re right Diane, there’s a very large selection available in both portable and standard sizes – pretty much something for every barbequing circumstance.

      Reply
  3. Wonderful awesome tips, gladly stuck in my head 🙂 ….makes me crave for the outdoors, trips with friends around the country 🙂 …Coleman road trip grill would do wonders for that trip am cooking up in my head right this minute…and back to earth, to plan properly 🙂

    Reply
    • ‘Tis the season for road trips with friends and outdoor grilling… glad you found the article helpful, and happy planning!

      Reply
  4. This is a truly helpful article. I had no idea I had to look for so many things before making a decision. We are looking for a portable grill to buy and we didn’t know that so many factors mattered when trying to buy one. I am definitely going to ask the store employees about all of the things you mentioned. If I hadn’t read this article, I probably would’ve gotten a much pricier grill even though we have a small family and we have only one or two barbecue cookouts a month. Thanks for the help.

    Reply
    • Glad you found the post timely and helpful raidermari, a little info can go a long way in making a purchase you’ll be happy with. Enjoy the BBQ season!

      Reply
  5. I like the look of the mini grill that looks easy to clean and easy to carry around. I’ve always been put off with barbecues only for the cleaning and the preparation time, so a gas one is so much quicker and you can ensure the food is cooked properly.

    I also think it’s great for traveling because sometimes you don’t have access to an oven and microwave food is never a choice really, so a small one can be a good investment.

    Reply
    • Gas is the way to go for a clean and quick BBQ, and their portability really does make it easy for cookouts wherever you are. And if you happen to live in an area that still loses power during winter storms (as I do), having a portable grill to set up for emergencies (outdoors, and under cover of course) makes a power outage so much easier.

      Reply
  6. So many barbeque posts! My mouth is watering! I’ve always loved the idea of a small and handy to carry outdoor cooking set. It’s just such a bummer that the mini portable tanks for fuel cost so much. In regards to value, the larger tanks are much more cost effective. I’d love a mini set that took coal, charcoal or even briquettes!

    Reply
    • Barbeque makes my mouth water too! You’re right, the larger tanks are much more economical but so bulky and heavy if you want to pack them from location to location. Check out the post on the portable charcoal models Yosh, you might see something there that would fit your needs.

      Reply
  7. A portable cooking setup can easily decrease the amount people will eat out on vacation – saving you some money and potentially making it more healthy. What’s better than a homemade meal away from home? It’s like carrying a taste of home right along with your travels.

    Reply
  8. This is perfect timing for me as I’ve recently decided to get a portable gas grill. I don’t have the space for a full-size model at my present location but I really hate using charcoal. Gas is so much cleaner and easier. I didn’t realize all the factors that go into choosing a grill so this article really gave me food for thought.

    Reply
    • Glad you found the posted when you needed it polgara, and gas is definately the way to go for clean and easy… happy barbequing!

      Reply
  9. Although I was never a big fan of gas grills (coal adds a really special smell and taste to meat) I gotta say I’ve been seeing them more and more lately. A few weeks ago a friend of mine brought his and it blew me away. You can start grilling the food sooner, there’s less stuff to clean up and even the taste of the food was great. I’m honestly thing about getting one myself.

    Reply
  10. I’m the same as Cmok, not really fond of gas grills. I love making food on the grills just because of the special smell, which you can’t really get from the gas. Still, this is a pretty reliable “instrument” for trips. I can imagine how easy it is to carry it around.

    Reply
  11. It is hard to replace the aroma and flavor of charcoal fuzyon, but for portability and traveling, a small gas model is the easier option.

    Reply
  12. People always tell me a Weber grill is the best money can buy. It seems that everywhere I turn the evidence is stacked in it’s favor. I’ve only really got serious into grilling in the last little while, and I think I may have to break down and get one. It has the perfect mix of portability, grill size and quality construction you just can’t argue with. The Coleman is still a consideration though. It looks like they may have learned a thing or two from Weber.

    Reply
    • The thing about Weber’s is that they’re still built the way grills/appliances/cars “used to be” – they’re solid and dependable. As you say NEC, a model for the others, like the Coleman, to aspire to!

      Reply
  13. I can vouch for this 1000%!

    My parents recently bought a portable BBQ for my upcoming birthday in July, we thought it would be nice to have the family over for a nice little cookout as its summer.

    Here’s the kicker;

    It was only ÂŁ20! Now I know they sell cheap grills but this is a whopper, it’s not huge but you can easily for a burger for each person there on the grill (say 7-8 people).

    Gives a nice even flame too so they’ll all be evenly cooked.

    It’s brilliant for summer, so if you haven’t got one I say you should, or just read up on why you should 🙂

    Reply
    • Awesome testimonial Jahroberts! Personally, I can’t imagine summer without BBQing, and the portable models are great for parties at the beach, park, or backyard. Thanks for your thoughts.

      Reply
  14. I am not a fan of propane based models because my husband I love to cook with fruit wood or hickory. I know, pretty country lol. However, this article convinced me on the convenience of gas. I want to do a great deal of traveling and nothing tops grilled food on the go. Thank you for this very informative article because now I know what to look for when shopping for the right portable model.

    Reply
    • Glad you found the post helpful Lakeisha, but gas doesn’t mean you have to give up the lovely flavors of fruit wood. Just lay some lumps around the edge of the grate while cooking to impart some delicious flavor to your road-trip menus. Happy trails to you!

      Reply
  15. Well, I never knew that there’s so much choice. I prefer to use charcoal and wood and to take my time over getting the temperature right. These gas versions are great for their convenience factor alone.

    Reply
  16. There’s definitely something to be said for the process of tending coals Julie, but as you say, it does take time… nice when you can, but gas is good when you can’t.

    Reply

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