Although ceramic grills (also known as kamado grills) have become really popular in recent times their roots go back many centuries to ancient Japan, where it was made from clay and used to cook rice.
Over time it has been adapted to become possibly the best charcoal fuelled grill option around. These days there are lots of different ceramic grills available to buy, but the sheer choice can also be confusing.
Here we share some tips on how to pick the best ceramic grill for your needs.
Check the essentials are included
These egg-shaped grills are usually housed on stands, and the inside section devotes two-thirds of its space to the grill, with the lid using the rest. Check there is a built-in thermometer in the lid, as not all models include this.
Also look at the seal, which should be tight when the lid is down.
Pick the right size
It’s best to ignore descriptions labelling a grill as large or extra large and look at the actual measurements listed. You can expect a standard size grill to have an 18-inch diameter grill space, while larger grills will be around 24 inches.
There are smaller versions available too, so which you buy really depends on what you plan to use it for.
Choose the right grill grate
There are several types available, each with different qualities, but the most popular are made from cast iron – which is great for searing meat but needs a good bit of care to keep it working properly, and stainless steel, which are less effort to maintain but don’t achieve the same sear level.
The choice is really about whether a great sear is worth the time commitment involved, or not.
Are the accessories extra?
A bargain price ceramic grill which comes without key accessories, such as a diffuser plate (essential if you want to smoke food), the cart, ideally with wheels, some form of side shelving to hold condiments and napkins, tools like a grate gripper, and a grill cover, may not be such a good deal – so be sure to check out how much they would cost to buy separately before committing.
Pay as much as you can
It’s tempting to snap up a cheaper than usual ceramic grill but this could be false economy if the product isn’t up to much. For example, a budget version could have thin walls that aren’t able to stay hot enough to grill to the standard you expect.
Portable or not?
If you have small children or high energy pets you may also want to look for a portable style ceramic grill with a wheel locking mechanism, which avoids the cart being moved while in use.
This is a plus as if they fall most ceramic grills will break.
A ceramic grill is a definite investment piece, so taking your time to choose the best one for your home is important. For more specific details and help, head over to Exchange Bar & Grill and have a read of their kamado joe vs big green egg comparison article.