What Makes Traeger Grills Better
Traeger was the inventor of the wood pellet grill. For this reason, you can be sure they know what theyre doing when it comes to manufacturing grills. Since they are the first, they have consistently improved their grills and are always adding new features.
Unlike many other pellet grill brands, Traeger always makes it easy to clean grills. For this purpose, the grills come with a grease collector and easy clean parts compared to other grill models from other brands.
As well, wood pellet grills are much easier to use than gas and charcoal grills. Since the temperature can be controlled, the food cooks at a constant rate and temperature.
This ensures you dont end up with undercooked or overcooked foods. For this reason, many pros and amateurs alike prefer using pellet grills as opposed to gas or charcoal models.
Basically, comfort and ease of use is a key factor that distinguishes Trager from other brands.
The Traeger grills are versatile so that you can grill and smoke all your favorite foods.
In summary, the Traeger brand sells high-quality grills that last you for years, so if you love the smoke and BBQ, it is a worthwhile investment.
Given these points, dont worry about investing in a Traeger grill. Regardless if you choose a cheaper model or a more expensive grill, you are still getting a high-value product.
Portable Traeger Grill Area Comparison
My Favorite Meat Smoking Tools
Thanks for checking out this article. I hope you learned a few things. Here are some of my favorite tools I use when smoking brisket that may be useful to you. These are affiliate links, so if you decide to purchase any of these products, Ill earn a commission. But in all honesty, these are the tools I recommend to my family and friends who are just starting out.
Meat Thermometer: There are dozens of fancy thermometers on the market, but I still use my trusty TP20. For around $50, I have a high-quality meat thermometer with two probes, and can track the temperature of my smoker with one probe, and my meat with the other probe. The ThermoPro TP20 is an Amazon Best Seller because its the easiest thermometer to operate, is durable, highly accurate, and comes with pre-programmed meat settings.
Instant Read Thermometer: Arguably, the second most important tool you need is a fast and accurate instant-read thermometer. These tools play an important role in the latter stages of the cook when the meat needs regular checking in multiple areas. I use the ThermoPro TP19 because it can do everything a ThermaPen can do, but for a fraction of the cost. You can check out the TP19 on Amazon here.
Traeger Grill Considerations When Buying
Before we do a deep dive into the different models, lets cover some general considerations:
Obviously, this one goes without saying, but how much do you have to spend? When buying a Traeger Grill, a big part of your decision is going to depend on your budget and what you can afford. Just keep in mind that depending on how often you use your Traeger, youll also need to allocate a few hundred dollars a year, or more, for wood pellets to operate your grill.
Size of Your Family and Circle of Friends
How many people do you expect to cook for? The amount of people will determine how big of a grill you buy. For a family of 2 adults and 2 children, or less, I think you can manage with any of the smaller sized grills. For larger families or families with older children that eat more, the bigger grill sizes are probably a better fit because you can handle more food at once.
Also consider where you plan on putting your grill. You might be lucky enough to have a condo that allows grills on balconies, but your balcony might only have enough space to accommodate a smaller sized grill.
To give you an idea of how big the Ironwood 880is, its enough for 10 chickens or 7 racks of ribs or 9 pork butts, according to the Traeger website.
Buying a Traeger Grill Based on What You Want To Cook
Do You Want Bells and Whistles? Buy Accordingly
Grill Design and Aesthetics
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Best Traeger Grill At/under $1000
While the Traeger Timberline is very cool , were not completely sure that the extra features are worth it compared to the Ironwood Series.
Personally we believe the Ironwood Series is the sweet spot of Traegerhood.
In the case of the Ironwood, we DO believe the value for the money is there with the extra features youll enjoy with the Ironwood over the pro line: for a bit more money youre getting a lot, including double side-walled insulation, a free side-shelf, an adjustable lower grill grate, a slightly larger hopper, Traegers Downdraft Exhaust System, and the Tru Convection option as I noted earlier, actual Traeger Ironwood users in online forums say time and again they are happy with their purchase decision.
How Do I Choose The Right Traeger Grill
You will certainly locate it very easy to navigate Traegers grill selection as the grill measurements are featured in each grills name.
Grill versions are constantly adhered to by a number indicating their grilling ability in square inches.
The Ironwood 880 has a grilling area of 880 square inches.
The Pro 780 grill has a surface of 780 square inches.
Barbecuing room on the Timberline 1300 is 1300 square inches.
Traegers web site says that the Ironwood 880 can fit ten poultries, 7 racks of ribs, or nine pork rumps.
If the grill is huge, it will certainly require even more pellets to warm up it.
You could be losing pellets trying to heat up a huge grill if you are only going to prepare for 2 or 3 individuals regularly. The less costly grill could be a far better option for you and you can make use of the savings in the direction of even more pellets.
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How Long Do Traeger Grills Last
People are now concerned about the quality of Traeger Grills. After all, youre likely wondering how long is the pellet grill going to last you?
Its hard to give an exact number of years, but expect your Traeger grill to last you for at least a decade years. Therefore, its still a good investment because these are durable products so you dont need to keep purchasing other grills. In short, a Traeger grill is durable, rust-proof, and a good value product.
Bbqrs Delight Cherry Smoke Flavor Bbq Pellets
The BBQrs Delight Cherry Smoke Flavor BBQ Pellets are top-quality smoking pellets.
They are 100% natural wood pellets and come in a variety of flavors, and they are the perfect choice for anyone whos got meat smoking in their grill.
In addition to being natural wood, these pellets are made from high-quality wood, not rotten or diseased wood.
- Size 20 lbs.
- They constitute of one-third cherry and two-thirds oak
- Low ash
- Milder flavor than youd get with 100% flavor wood
- A bit pricey for a blend
Blending wood pellets with oak only ensures that you get a good and steady burn at a consistent temperature.
The BBQrs Delight Cherry Smoke Flavor BBQ Pellets are nicely formed wood pellets, made without oil and filler, and they usually burn clean.
They come in 20 lbs. Bag, which is pretty manageable. It allows you to use different wood without ever feeling limited.
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Are Z Grills Made In The Usa
Z Grills is a US based company that was established in 2016. The grills themselves are made in China. While the Z Grills trading name is relatively new, the people involved are not. They have been making grill parts for many reputable brands, such as Traeger, for at least 30 years.
Traeger used to manufacture their products in the United States, so we can assume that at some point Z Grills would have been made here too. If you are looking for an American-made grill there are several options available to you on the market.
Smokin Brothers, Weber, Blazn, Yoder, and Pitts & Spitts are just a few of these options. Each comes with its own unique set of pros and cons and we recommend doing some more in-depth research before purchase.
Some Advantages Of Pellet Grill
- They are easy to operate. The functions and control it precedes let you make the most tiresome dishes with much less effort.
- There are fewer reports of flare-ups on wood pellet grills than the charcoal or gas grills. And since it lets you be hands-free for the most part, the accidents are further minimized.
- Pellet grills generate food that tastes like it has been cooked over a wood fire. Here’s what makes them superior to substitutes such as gas and charcoal.
- Several types of wood are used to make the pellet blends that give them their distinct flavors. They can be bourbon and cherry or apple and hickory.
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Traeger Ironwood 650 Wood Pellet Grill
The Ironwood series is a new addition to the Traeger lineup of pellet grills.
Available in either 650 or 885 square inches you get a larger, more versatile grill than the pro series, without the large price jump you see on the the Timberline series.
Having said that even the smaller 650 square inch Ironwood is over the $1,000 mark so this is definitely not a budget grill.
Traeger Ironwood 650 Specifications:
Design wise the Ironwood is similar to the more expensive Timberland. You get the DownDraft Exhaust and TRU Convection features that used to be unique to the Timberland.
While it does sound a bit like marketing jargon, these features promise to help circulate fresh smoke, keeping smoke in the chamber and maintaining even temp.
All things that we like to hear.
Youve also got some handy features that make this grill easy to use. Like the keep warm mode and options to create custom cook settings via the digital control panel or app.
What we like:
- Option for searing The bottom cooking grate can be lowered for searing, or raised for grilling and smoking.
- Better insulation The Ironwood uses double side 304 stainless steel for better insulation and temperature control.
The Ironwood series is all about offering a middle range between the pricier Timberline and smaller more basic Pro series.
Traeger Tfb65lzbc Texas Elite 34 Wood Pellet Grill
https://www.amazon.com/Traeger-TFB65LZBC-Grills-Pellet-Folding/dp/B07C2YNJ75/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8& linkCode=ll1& tag=grilllovers-20& linkId=fb5794825bae9f0e93b8ac86472936e2& language=en_US target=blank background=#ef612d size=4 center=yes icon=icon: hand-o-right rel=nofollow]View on Amazon
This is a very versatile pellet grill that offers up to six cooking options. Apart from grilling, you can use the Traeger TFB65LZBC Texas Elite 34 Wood Pellet Grill for baking, smoking, braising, roasting, and barbecuing. All these options make this grill very attractive to prospective buyers.
With a cooking area of 646 square inches, you can cook whatever you want to cook with your family and friends without having to worry about space. However, it has a maximum temperature of 450° F as against the Louisiana Grills LG900 which can heat up to 600°F.
With its electric ignition and other digital features, the grill is very user-friendly, and you dont need to be an expert before you can use the grill. This is a very important feature on any grill you want to buy.
The digital control center makes it easy to control the temperature as your food cooks. By simply turning a knob, you can effectively control the temperature. Also, it has an LED display feature that shows the temperature as your food cooks this makes it easier to monitor the temperature as you cook.
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Portable Options: Pit Boss Mahogany 150pps Vs Traeger Ranger
Both brands make suitcase-style tabletop models that are perfect for tailgating or camping. They arent large, but their simple operation and efficient cooking will be a welcome treat compared to the old charcoal camp grill.
While these two grills are remarkably similar, the Pit Boss wins on a few accounts.Its more affordable, has a larger cooking area, and can reach higher temperatures.
Pit Boss Mahogany 150PPS
Design and Build Quality
Both grills are similar they both look like hard-sided suitcases. When the lid is opened, the small pellet hopper is located next to the cooking grates, making a clean, tidy package.
The Pit Boss Mahogany features a smaller 5-pound capacity hopper in favor of a slightly more cooking area. The Traeger swings the other way, with an 8-pound hopper and a little less space for food.
Ease of Use and Maintenance
Ease of use is a significant factor in portable grills.
How will you power the grill, and what other accessories will you need to carry with you when youre away from home?
One important consideration with portable pellet grills is that both will require a standard electrical power outlet. But since these grills only use electricity to start the fire and run the digital controller, it is possible to operate them using an inexpensive 12-volt inverter from your car.
The external drip catchers and porcelain-coated cooking grates make clean-up easy and fast.
Temperature Range and Control
Traeger Grills Pro Series 34 Pellet Grill And Smoker
Why youll love this:
If you want size over anything else, this grill has you covered.
Similar to the Pro Series models above, this one comes with most of the Traeger Grills trimmings. While it lacks the shelving of the Select Elite, it has a nice sawhorse design that makes it very sturdy, while maintaining 4 wheels instead of the usual design that sports a pair of large wheels and a couple of posts. This makes this huge grill a bit more mobile than it otherwise might be.
It still has digital temperature control built in, as well as a spacious and easy to load hopper, and a great chimney for smoking.
My issue largely lies in the price. 884 square inches of grilling space is an immense amount of space, and it commands an equally immense price. Its also, quite frankly, overkill for most people.
Unless youre cooking meals for a crowd of people every day the size of this is likely to be well beyond your means, where something in the roughly 500 to 600 square inches range will probably do you better.
Basically, its in both an awkward sizing and awkward price bracket a little too large for most people while not large enough for others. Youd need a very specific usage requirement for this to be worth it, in my opinion.
- Awkwardly sized too small for many professionals, too big for most home cooks.
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Can You Grill With A Traeger In Winter
Yes, you can use your Traeger in the winter but make sure you plan for it.
If possible, bring the grill inside or cover it with a waterproof tarp, so rain and snow dont fall on it. If this isnt an option, then make sure to clean off all the excess food particles that might catch water.
Youll also want to buy a cover from Traeger for it so you can keep your grill protected when its not in use. This will help make sure that the insides dont rust and wear out faster, which would mean that you have to replace parts of your Traeger earlier than you should.
Last But Certainly Not Least Construction And Built Quality Traeger Wins
Okay, so probably you guessed by now that the Traeger would take this one, but since this is a Z Grills vs Traeger comparison article, this topic has to be discussed. When comparing pellet grills, many talk about metal thickness and useless inches, and 304 stainless steel, pretty welds this and that.
The button line is for most users, non of this BS will matter, but it is a good sales point and a way for grill brands to brag about their grills. Is like talking about horsepower in SUVs a 1000 horsepower SUV in carpool sure is useless.
No, I am not saying that construction and build quality arent important. After all, both elements play a role in the longevity and durability of your grill, but for the average person is not that important. Many spend unnecessary money on a grill because it has two stainless steel layers and shiny screws.
Here are two things to keep in mind regarding build quality and construction. Construction and quality are important, especially if you intend to use your grill often. The temperature range at which pellet grills operate can be hard on parts, and eventually, something can fail. So the better the grill is built, the more likely it will outlive your car.
Traeger takes extra care and puts more details into constructing their grills. The fit and finish in a Traeger grill is better, but Z Grills consultation is not far behind. Where the Traeger nails it is with its double-sided wall construction.
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The Origins Of Barbecue
According to Merriam-Webster, the word “barbecue” derives from the Spanish word “barbacòa.” Barbacòa itself may derive from a similar sounding word used by the Taino, indigenous people of the Caribbean.
Barbacòa, first used in the 1500s, refers to a frame of wood on which raw meat was supported, and then cooked over open flame. So the word barbecue” originally referred to what we might call a cooking appliance.
Within a few generations, the term began to have other meanings. “Barbecue” was used to mean the method of cooking over open flame as early as the 1600s. And by the 1700s, it had come to mean a social event, especially in America. For evidence, take this 1769 entry from future President George Washington’s diary: “Went up to Alexandria to a barbecue and stayed all night.”