Throughout this buying guide, we’ve highlighted the benefits of electric grills, walked you through the process of selecting one, and answered your most pressing questions about these products as a whole. But something else occurred to us along the way: perhaps you’re interested in seeing how we size up the category. For that reason, we asked our experts to sort through our entire selection of the best electric grills and separate them based on quality, performance, and features.
The result is a set of 4 classes (Luxury, Premium, Practical, and Entry-level), each clearly defined and distinct from the others. With the knowledge of what each class represents, you’ll be able to quickly determine the collection of electric grills that best fits your lifestyle — or get reaffirmation about the choice you’ve already made based on the rest of the buying guide!
Electric Grill Class Comparison
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Luxury Electric Grills
- Expertly engineered with all 304, commercial-grade stainless steel for maximum longevity
- Designed for frequent use in the harshest outdoor environments
- Lifetime warranties on grill bodies and grates reinforce unmatched quality
- Easily maintain searing temperatures across huge cooking surfaces for top-shelf performance
- Lower-end temperatures of 150 degrees put nearly every cooking technique at your disposal
- Built-in timers and automatic shutoff functions keep you safe and on track
- Features like digital controls, rotisseries, and dual heating elements lead to luxury grilling
Proudly crafted entirely from 304 stainless steel, Luxury electric grills are the finest any chef could hope for in terms of quality. Commercial-grade steel is good for years and even decades of outdoor use, enabling these grills to thrive throughout repeated use in the elements. Need proof? Electri-Chef offers a lifetime warranty on the bodies and cooking grates of every grill, ensuring you can push them to their limits and beyond. This is also one of the only classes that includes built-in models, which often serve as the centerpiece of stunning, all-stainless steel outdoor kitchens.
Luxury-class grills can sustain stunningly even heat in the range of 150–600 degrees, allowing them to cook low and slow just as easily as they sear. Though a handful of Premium models have higher top-end temperatures, we’re more impressed by the performance of Luxury grills because their cooking areas are quite large relative to the rest of the category. In short, it’s much more difficult to hold 600 degrees across 1,056 square inches than it is to pump out 725 degrees over 252. To perform to such a high degree, Electri-Chef grills need 220-volt outlets rated between 20 and 40 amps.
Incredible quality-of-life features come standard: built-in safety timers with 10-minute intervals up to an hour, an automatic shutoff function, sturdy locking shelves, and removable components that are also dishwasher-safe. However, the add-ons get really interesting when you look at the individual Electri-Chef collections. The Emerald and Ruby Series can accommodate optional rotisserie kits (quite a rarity in this category), while the Diamond Series features 2 heating elements for dual-zone cooking. Select models across the collections even have easy and intuitive digital controls!
Top Luxury Electric Grill Brands
Premium Electric Grills
- 304-grade stainless steel construction ensures durability in the outdoors
- Supported by strong warranties, some of which cover the lifetime of the original purchaser
- Double-lined hoods trap heat to help reach temperatures above 700 degrees
- Flame tamers distribute heat and stop flare-ups in a show of excellent performance
- Certain models are certified for indoor use with a vent hood
- Premium features such as safety timers and digital controls heighten your experience
- Removable, dishwasher-safe components make for quick and easy cleaning
Thanks to their 304-grade stainless steel exteriors, Premium models bring years upon years of tremendous durability and sleek looks to backyard cookouts. Double and even triple layers of insulation in certain components only add to the outstanding quality found in this class. Warranties are equally strong, with coverage extending for the lifetime of the original purchaser in some cases. Blaze electric grills, for example, are backed by a best-in-class, lifetime warranty along with a 3-year multi-user warranty that applies to commercial applications like apartment and condo complexes.
With powerful elements that can soar well into searing temperatures — Blaze has laid claim to the high mark at 749 degrees — Premium electric grills have little trouble with performance. Blaze models achieve such staggering heat thanks in part to full-width flame stabilizing grids that radiate heat toward food and block most flare-ups, while Coyote electric grills have ceramic briquette flavorizers that function in the same way. Both Coyote and Kenyon electric grills are rated for indoor use (most others are not), but it’s always wiser and safe to cook under a vent hood in such cases.
Automatic safety shutoff timers are the norm, along with dishwasher-safe components like heating elements, drip trays, inner liners, and even grill grates. Certain brands take things up a notch with digital controls; Kenyon electric grills make precise heat adjustments via a touch sensor panel, and Fire Magic electric grills rely on thermostatic control systems with digital temperature readouts and a preheat notification alarm. Other premium touches worth spotlighting: Blaze’s optional hanging kit for building into a BBQ island, and Coyote’s surge protector to protect the grill wiring.
Top Premium Electric Grill Brands
Practical Electric Grills
- Mixed materials used in construction put a cap on overall quality
- Warranties top out at 10 years, and some don’t include labor coverage
- Most models are portable tabletop units for easy urban grilling
- Simple controls and strong heating elements result in solid performance
- Capable of searing and low-and-slow cooking despite decreased temperature ranges
- Weber Pulse 2000 model is compatible with the Weber Connect app for effortless grilling
- Locking lids and easy-clean features marginally improve usability
Quality begins to dip in this class, where you’ll find mixed materials used in construction instead of all stainless steel. This trade-off leads to shorter lifespans than what you’d normally enjoy from higher-class electric grills, but these models can still see you through a handful of years. This is reflected in the slimmed-down warranties, which top out at 10 years but generally sit around 5 years for most components. Additionally, the only options in this class are portable or freestanding, meaning you’ll have to look in the Premium or Luxury class if you’d prefer a built-in model.
These grills are capable of hitting searing temperatures with decently even heat across their cooking surfaces. Simple control knobs on the Napoleon TravelQ electric grill and Weber Q models allow you to adjust temperature by small degrees, whether you’re aiming for an intense sear or need more delicate heat for veggies and fish. Still, the Weber Pulse 2000 electric grill is the peak of performance in this class thanks to dual heating elements and electronic controls. Also of note: the Maverick electric grill cooks with high-efficiency infrared technology and is certified for indoor use.
Just as the Weber Pulse leads the way in terms of performance, it’s also a standout for its array of features. Most notable is the grill’s compatibility with the Weber Connect app, which lets you wirelessly monitor food and includes step-by-step instructions and recipes. (Talk about grilling made easy!) Seemingly for good measure, the Weber Pulse also has a digital thermometer, preheat notifications, and a cart with plenty of storage options. The rest of the class, meanwhile, makes do with basic offerings like locking lids, warming racks, and removable components for dishwasher cleaning.
Top Practical Electric Grill Brands
Entry-Level Electric Grills
- Painted steel exteriors don’t offer much in terms of outdoor durability
- Short lifespans mean you’ll be looking for a replacement grill within a few years
- Slim warranties can be as short as 90 days from the date of purchase
- Heat ranges are smaller and temperature is less precise than in higher classes
- Heat reflector pans help compensate for relatively weak performance
- Meco’s adjustable heating element and optional rotisserie make for surprising versatility
- Mostly basic features like folding legs and spill-resistant drip trays
Because painted steel bodies are much more prone to corrosion than higher grades of steel, Entry-level models may be usable for only a few years before breaking down. Other components are also of low quality — Cuisinart tabletop grills have enameled steel grates, while freestanding Americana by Meco electric grills come with wood or plastic side shelves, not to mention wood or wire bottom racks. Warranties are understandably lacking considering the materials. A 3-year coverage plan is as good as it gets in this class, with some warranties sitting at just 90 days from purchase.
It’s safe to expect reduced temperature ranges and uneven heat from any Entry-level grill, and those in the electric category are no different. Searing a steak isn’t terribly difficult, but nailing down precise temperature is more of a chore. Take Meco models, for instance: because they have a simple thermostat control with Low, Medium, and High settings, it’s harder to get dialed-in heat right where you want it. (Heat reflector pans help only so much.) Also be aware that some Entry-level grills are on the smaller end, as evidenced by Cuisinart’s 145 square inches of grilling space.
For being in the Entry-level class, Americana by Meco models include some surprisingly desirable features. Their 3-position heating elements greatly assist in versatility by sliding below food for direct heat, opposite food for indirect heat, or into a fully vertical position in the rear of the grill for rotisserie cooking. (Honestly, a rotisserie alone is an uncommon feature for Entry-level grills.) Other than that and the easy-view window on certain Meco grills, the features are basic and what we’d expect from this class: folding legs, a locking lid, and spill-resistant drip trays.