The best memories in the hot summer season can sometimes be from having the perfect barbeque with all your friends and family over.
The warm air, the summer sun and of course the mouth-watering sensation of perfectly grilled delicacies. But in order to achieve this, you’ll need the best gas and charcoal combo grill at hand.
Why We Love It
It’s hard to say that the design for the best gas and charcoal combo grill was not carefully considered when making this piece. You have a basket and lower shelf at your disposal for greater storage convenience.
The porcelain coated grates give you more ease when cleaning and do not overheat while grilling. Also provided is table space for dishes and completed foods. Finally, there’s a vast amount of actual grilling space measuring 1260 square inches.
The Char-Griller 5050 has wheels for easier transportation and storage. This grill has 580 square inches of space to hold the charcoal, an adjustable grate to monitor heat as well as behave as a basket for easy clean-up.
The secret behind the popularity of the combo grill is the element of versatility it offers and space-saving properties that two separate grills would otherwise demand. So how do you go about choosing the best combo grill? Here’s what you’ll need to consider before investing in a hybrid grill.
Why choose a combo grill?
If you are an ardent griller and plan on using two fuel sources efficiently at one time, then you should consider getting a hybrid/combo grill. A hybrid grill gives you the option of either using charcoal/wood or propane gas to prep your food. As such, you get the ease of convenient use and easy cleanup as well as the choice to enjoy rich, flavorful food.
A great grill will deliver cooking options that cover all aspects of grilling. First off, there is the need for direct heat for high sear cooking such as open cooking steaks. Then, grills are used for indirect heat convention where roasts, whole chickens and other foods that require slow air circulation are prepared. And finally, you may want to get that indirect heat smoke where you close the lid to infuse the food with smoky flavor.
With a combo grill, you’ll want to get all three options.
When you have a gas and charcoal combo grill, each compartment will give you separate benefits. For instance, charcoal is a superior option for searing as it produces greater direct heat. But you may want to go with gas grilling for slow cooking as it allows for greater temperature control.
When it comes to smokiness, you can get results from either type. The only thing to do here is to add the smoking unit or smoking pellets on a metal surface to prevent them from burning on direct heat. Once heated, they will start to emit the smoky flavor.
Features to look for in a combo grill
Combo grills come equipped with a variety of features giving you a wide choice to choose from. Some of the most basic things to look out for include the following:
- Cooking Space
The whole point of a hybrid grill is to give you more cooking options while saving you space. However, you don’t want to do that at the cost of sacrificing cooking space. So, for individual or small family use, it makes sense to go for something with at least 300 square inches. For larger gatherings, though, you can look for something in the 500 square inch range.
The one consideration here is that the larger the grill, the bigger the price tag.
Grill power is measured in units called BTUs or British Thermal Units. The BTU rating of the grill tells you about the amount of heat burners will produce in one hour and the amount of fuel that will be used up in that duration.
A good BTU rating to look for is somewhere in the 80 to 100 per square inch range. A grill that has good heat retention with its components fitting well, should be able to heat up the grill fairly quickly with that rating.
- Temperature Control
Since temperature is crucial when grilling, you want to make sure that your grill offers a range as well as precision in this regard. Among these, the gas grill compartment will, of course, feature temperature regulators. However, you may need to check for air vents, dampers and other features in the charcoal compartment.
When considering temperature control, also look for a model that features an adjustable charcoal tray allowing you to raise or lower the charcoal as per your cooking needs.
This point also factors in heat distribution. If your grill has uneven heat distribution, it will leave cold spots with the food not cooking evenly at the same time.
- Ease Of Cleaning
It’s important to look for a model that presents ease of cleaning, especially if you grill often. Experts recommend cleaning the cooking area after every cooking session. So look for a grill that makes cleaning easy.
The gas compartment is usually easier to clean but make sure to check that the charcoal compartment comes with a tray to collect the ashes. The best combo grills will often come with a slide-out ash dump pan making cleaning a cinch.
The best gas and charcoal grill reviews of 2019
1. Char-Broil Gas2Coal 3-Burner Liquid Propane and Charcoal Hybrid Grill
The combination of gas and charcoal is a great one, bringing forth flavor at greater speeds. Char-Broil is a 3-burner gas grill with 420 square inches of grilling space. This grill can transform from a gas grill to a charcoal grill in a mere matter of 60 seconds or less, without the hassle of using tools.
The charcoal can be lit by the gas burners with no need for any lighter fluid. The main burners on this model have an impressive 40,000-BTU, complimented with a side burner 12,000-BTU. This side burner comes with a lid, converting this space into extra table surface area.
For ease of clean-up, the iron grates are porcelain coated and the burners are made up of stainless steel. Char-Broil uses durable, quality material for the construction of this grill to ensure it lasts your barbequing requirements for years.
This grill also provides you with an engineered charcoal tray that can be pulled out for easier cleaning and faster replacement during the barbeque. The propane tank is hidden in plain sight, inside of the drawer on the bottom of the grill. Located on the lid of the grill is a temperature gauge that helps you control the heat developing in the grill.
The gas is ignited with electronic ignition, each push lighting a strong flame. This grill is covered with a 5-year warranty on burners; 2-year warranty for the lid and firebox, and a final 1-year warranty on everything else included.
Some of the complaints, however, do put this product’s quality into question. Rather than berating you about compliments for the fulfilled, rust-free years with this product, some customers address the material as insufficient and not promising. The complaints on this matter range from the metal grates and burners rusting within the first year or two, to troubling issues of the paint falling off of the interior and onto the food. Issues are also related to the burners not properly accumulating heat and extinguishing within minutes after turning it on.
Overall, the rate of complaints is not high. The warranty does promise to tend to needs with the burners for five years, but most issues gravitate in over one year which surpasses the warranty for all other issues not related to the specified.
- Ample cooking surface
- Easy clean up
- Propane tank storage is easy to use while remaining out of the way
- Coverage for specific needs and issues
- Material is not as sufficient as promised for some grills
2. Dyna-Glo DGB730SNB-D Dual Fuel Grill
Dyna-Glo starts its competition for the best with its 952 square inches surface area for grilling. The stainless steel burners offer 12,000-BTU’s to make for a strong and sturdy performance with each use. Each of these burners is safeguarded with enameled heat tents for better dispersion of heat. The heat can be controlled with dials for each burner.
The charcoal compartment can be accessed through an access door located on the front of the grill. All lids have a stainless steel handle that doesn’t accrue heat during use. The interior of the grill is lined with aluminized steel for the best heat confinement.
The best parts about this grill though, are all of the additional features promised. It comes with foldable side tables that offer extra table space while working. They also come with a towel hanger and tool hooks. The propane tank sits in the double-door cabinet in the front of the grill. For the charcoal, there’s an available removable ash pan.
The biggest issue that customers have encountered is the assembly on purchase. Some people have had incorrect bolts or lids sent in the shipping, not enough material or comes damaged. There are no particular issues when it comes to the performance of the grill, meaning that it serves its designated purpose adequately, only if you can get it into one piece. Shipping seems to be the main and only disputable issue for this grill, otherwise, the performance of the grill is one to behold.
This grill is overall an imminent option for heavy-duty barbeque projects and family get-togethers. The advanced features and multiple additions to the body are decent features that fit lovingly into the price range given. This grill is easy to maintain, durable and long-lasting and provides quite the performance with each use. The outcome is consistent over the years redeeming the name of Dyna-Glo.
- Commercial grade, durable material used to make grill; stainless steel
- Porcelain-enameled grates for easier clean and better conservation of flavor
- Easy, quick ignition and easy-to-access ashtray
- Various, numerous additions
- Issues with the shipment of grill components
3. Oklahoma Joe’s Charcoal/LP Gas/Smoker Combo
This grill doesn’t only offer you the options of charcoal and gas, but it gives you the opportunity to smoke your food as well. Oklahoma Joe’s provides with plenty of space to diversify your dishes and multi-task over all of the surfaces.
Included in this machine are an offset firebox and side burner. The gas and smoke grills are in separate chambers for multi-tasking and multiple flavorful outcomes. The smoking chamber comes with dampers to better control the temperature and smoke quantity.
The grill comes with plenty of shelf space so all your utensils and dishes are nearby at all times. The shelf is located underneath the cooking chambers for ease of access. The firebox has an access door for convenient stoking without releasing all the smoke and heat. On top of the two chamber lids are temperature gauges. They separately monitor the heat and temperature of the smoke and gas chambers.
While the chamber heats up, the handle stays cool so you can freely open and close the chambers without burning your hands. To wrap up this deal, it has an overall sleek appearance and wheels on the bottom meaning you can move it around the porch to your own convenience.
What makes this grill not the perfect one on the market is that its life does not last long. The most repetitive complaint is that the grill begins to fall apart after continuous use. Granted, this grill is made to handle much heavier duty jobs, not your daily one steak dinner. With the robust, immense shape and size, this grill is made to throw a grand performance for a large crowd. Nevertheless, users did not approve when the grill started rusting, collapsing and showing signs of deterioration in less than a year.
Another complaint is that the gas chamber doesn’t perform as efficiently as it should. It either only maintains one extreme temperature or simply does not ignite and heat up as well as it should. This complaint is not a very common one and only happens in the direct and worst of situations. The short-lived life, however, is one that’s brought up more occasionally.
- Smoking option for your grilling
- Dampers to better regulate the heat/smoke pressure in charcoal and firebox
- Portable design
- Gas chamber doesn’t perform to par with less than adequate heat regulation
- Can start rusting during the first year
4. Smoke Hollow 4-in-1 LP Gas Charcoal Smoker Searing BBQ Grill Model PS9900
Smoke Hollow proudly introduces yet another addition to your combo grill; searing. With four options all placed inside one entity, you can use gas, charcoal, the firebox and a searing burner for the finest variety of foods in one barbeque!
This grill has a four burner gas grill which creates 30,000-BTUs. The charcoal grill helps capture the flavor and comes with an adjustable tray to better monitor the temperature. The infrared side burner is made specially to sear your meats to perfection. Finally, there’s the promising offset smoker box to place all the smokehouse flavor into your food. This grill works delightfully when holding large parties and gatherings.
There’s a total of 1100 square inches of cooking space. The electronic ignition allows you to light your grill using any method at the push of a button. All burners are made with stainless steel for a longer lasting performance life. The gas and charcoal chambers each have their own grade temperature gauge for a better eye on your heat.
For better control over the smoke and heat in both the charcoal and firebox, the Smoke Hollow grill has a damper located in the front. All the grates on this grill are porcelain coated for an easier clean and greater heat resistance. With the easy-lift grate system, cleaning out and replacing charcoal is a cinch.
Just as well, it comes with a removable ash/grease tray for removal and replacement. The smoke offset firebox can use wood and charcoal both. This grill comes with four wheels on the bottom for moving around the grill.
Quite similar to the issue with the Oklahoma Joe’s grill, this grill doesn’t have a long-lasting life. It does make for an appealing performance while it lasts, but users find that for the price, the life isn’t as long as they would prefer. The burners tend to start rusting after continuous use and the top rusts overall, making it harder to open and close the grill when in use and storing it away.
Another complaint is rooted to the assembly of the machine which can be complicated. Granted, most people do state that they were able to complete the grill as a finished product, it was simply more of a nuisance than it should have been.
- Searing option available in this model
- Damper for both the charcoal and firebox
- Easy clean-up with the removable ash tray and porcelain grates
- Not a very long-lasting product
- Complicated assembly of the grill
5. Fire Magic Aurora A830i Built-in Dual Propane Gas and Charcoal Combo BBQ Grill
The scales tip higher with this model grill coming with five different options. On this grill, you can cook with gas, charcoal, smoke, searing and make your lunch rotisserie style. This compact grill offers a big deal, offering 828 square inches of cooking space, the gas grill burners have 50,000-BTUs worth of power to offer in each job well done.
To better disperse the heat over the cooking surface, the grill has heat zone separators to control surface area covered. To further help the distribution of heat over the surface, this grill has stainless steel grates.
A unique feature of this grill is the blue LED lights that turn red as you turn on the burners keeping your attention focused on only the burners that are on. Coupling the charcoal and propane gas chambers is a rotisserie burner located on the back of the grill with 16,000-BTU.
The charcoal chamber has easy access, so changing and cleaning out charcoal becomes an easier hassle-free task. It also has an adjustable tray for the charcoal for better control over the heat and temperature. There’s no need for any lighter fluids as this grill comes with a burner dedicated to igniting both the propane and charcoal chamber.
What makes this grill slightly different from others is the need for power to start it up, an exact 120V power source to get your barbeque going. This machine has a sleek, simplistic design with temperature gauges on each lid. Overall, this grill is compact and doesn’t offer as much table space as typical grills, and has no compatible storage space for any utensils.
Fortunately, the size allows you to place this on a table while working, it’s just not as convenient as large grills are when it comes to dealing with large amounts of service. It also becomes inconvenient when dealing with the power source. This could mean staying relatively close to your home due to the required outlet.
Smoke that develops could be a nuisance and cause issues near the home. Some people may even find that they need to use it indoors which is quite troublesome.
- Compact, therefore easier to store and use
- Five options of gas, charcoal, smoking, searing, and rotisserie
- LED lights to indicate which burners are on and off
- Small and doesn’t come with any table space
6. Char-Broil Standard 1010 3-Burner Liquid Propane and Charcoal Combo Grill
Char-Broil comes again with another combo product for large-scale jobs outside in the sun. This model offers you a working space of 505 square inches. The combination of charcoal and gas naturally result in there being two separate chambers for the two cooking methods.
Each chamber has a temperature gauge for regulation over the heat pressure level. On both sides of the grill are table spaces for dishes and utensils. The gas chamber has 3 burners and one side burner that comes with a lid. The main burners total to 36,000-BTUs while the side burner reaches a modest 12,000-BTUs.
The charcoal chamber comes with a crank to adjust the height of the grate, an easy access door at the front of the chamber and an ash tray for a smooth clean-up and replacement of charcoal. The grates are porcelain-coated for an easier clean and sufficient heat resistance during use for minimal rust collection.
The issues people have experienced with this grill though are not limited. There are multiple issues that spark up occasionally. Some people found that ordering online was not as trustworthy as getting the grill in stores. Some pieces came shipped broken and damaged which made assembly problematic.
Other people encountered issues with the performance of the grill. Though the charcoal side pleases very much with its crank ability, the propane side does cause issues sometimes. It either doesn’t start up properly or doesn’t heat up quickly enough. There are a fair share of compliments for the propane side too which makes this complaint both questionable and variable.
Overall, this grill isn’t a bad investment and carries a particularly useful component; the adjustable crank for the charcoal grate. This makes leveling the charcoal grate much easier than having to stick your hand into the chamber and lift it to its proper placement. It works decently on both sides of the scale, making for a great charcoal and gas grill in general.
- The temperature gauge on either side
- Added table space for placing dishes and utensils
- Crank to adjust the height of the charcoal grate
- Propane side is not consistent with the performance
- Shipment can create issues with separate components
7. Char-Griller 5050 Duo Gas-and-Charcoal Grill (Our Top Recommended)
Finally, the ends come with the opening piece. Like all of the formerly mentioned, this grill comes with two separate chambers each for charcoal and propane gas grilling. The propane gas chamber comes with adjustable dials to monitor the heat and keep your food from burning.
In total, this gas grill can accumulate 40,800-BTUs and is started with a push button electronic ignition. The side burners have a 12,000-BTU power and come with a lid for additional table space when not in use.
This grill has a total working surface area of 1260 square inches. For an easier clean after each use, this grill comes with a stainless steel heat gauge, porcelain coated grates and a removable ash pan for quick replacement and refill.
The grate is adjustable for belter control over heat and temperature. The base of the charcoal chamber allows for greater ventilation and therefore a more impactful performance of flavor and taste with each use. This model offers you a massive amount of space is the bottom shelf and even comes with a condiment basket.
The Char-griller pulls a strong, hefty performance with its versatility and space. What most consumers loved about it best was how easy it was to assemble the grill. Some people were easily able to do it in a matter of four hours on their own without professional assistance. Though there are occasional inconveniences such as damaged parts and misplaced bolts, the performance of this grill seems to pull through and make the struggle a worthwhile wait.
What customers do not appreciate though, is the interior rusting after the first year. This is an issue that can be solved, but it requires extra work on your behalf to disinfect and wipe clean the interior after every, or every other use. The first year goes by swimmingly, whether the parts came scratched or in perfect condition, but after that, the grill is more vulnerable to developing rust and mold if there is moisture.
- The vast amount of working surface area for large get-togethers and faster work
- The grand base for better ventilation through the charcoal chamber
- Relatively easy assembly in comparison to other grills
- Possible to start rusting after the first year
How To Take Care Of Your Combo Grill?
It’s not just the investment into a combo grill that warrants attention, but you’ll also want to make sure that you upkeep your investment for longevity and performance. Expert opinion dictates that your combo grill should be deep cleaned once or twice every year. However, if you grill quite often, then give your grill a deep clean every few months.
If you want to enjoy quality grilling for a long time, then you must clean and care for your appliance regularly. Maintaining the gas compartment is the easier of the two as for the most part, all you need is a good grill brush paired with some soapy water and an old sponge.
Start off by giving the grates a good scrub which should take off any chunks and charred meat flesh sticking there. Then work on the burner protectors that, in most grills sit in the ledges and can be pulled right out. Once scrubbed clean, it’s time to move onto the burners themselves.
If you feel comfortable removing the burners, do so, or if not then just wipe them clean with the sponge.
The plates underneath the burners should be removed to clean all the char collecting there.
The charcoal compartment works along similar lines, demanding a somewhat more thorough cleaning with the ash removal being a priority. If left in for too long, the unit can start rusting and corroding earlier on.
If the grill doesn’t come with a removable ash box, you may have to vacuum the ash out. Also, keep out an eye for food stuck on the grates making sure that grease doesn’t build up.
What makes the Char-Griller 5050 a truly captivating grill for lovers and beginners alike is definitely the amount of space it has to offer. Everything on the grill can be evenly distributed over the working area for better dispersion of heat. All of your food gets its fair share of grilling, whether it be on the gas side or charcoal side. The open space, shelf, and bottom compartment also allow for easier movement around the piece and greater comfort.
The Char-Griller also impresses with its simplicity, something that other grills tend to lack. Rather than focusing on the primary use of the grill, other brands like to try and pry your attention towards the additional features to offer. The Char-Griller makes the most of what it has to offer, which is evidently a lot.
My name is Kathy Gallo, Editor of Ag Ferrari food blog. The guide you find here is designed exactly for you, and it is our hope that you find it not only interesting but also actionable.