Do you like to grill and smoke food frequently but don't have the space or the budget to buy both a good grill and a good smoker?
For those of you that must have the best of both worlds, picking and buying the best grill smoker combo is the way to go. However, they can be quite expensive so finding the right one can be tough.
With dozens of designs and material types, having an expert review your options is a good idea. In this article we will review five of the most popular grill smoker combinations to help with your decision.
Note: If you are in a hurry, you can check our quick product consideration list down below or read our quick comparison table.
Best Grill Smoker Combos To Consider
#1 - The Old Smokey Grill-Smoker is an inexpensive but effective option. Many people have used their Smokey products for decades due to the aluminum body and the high quality of meat it produces. If you are on a budget and need a basic grill which can be used as a smoker that will last, this may be your choice.
#2 - The Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado is an egg shaped grill that is highly efficient and can excellently perform like a smoker too. It is not true indirect heat, but with a few adjustments, it can do low and slow or sear at very high temperatures. It is also very easy to assemble.
#3 - The Camp Chef PG24 Pellet Combination is the most hassle-free version of the smoker grill combo that you can find. With its digital controls and internal temperature readout, it keeps your temperature within a couple degrees of where you set it. This attractive and effective option is a bit pricey but worth it.
#4 - The Smoke Hollow 4-in-1 LP Model PS9900 is the only model we reviewed with both a built in gas grill and a built in infra-red sear burner. This huge grill has an impressive appearance and can cook for the whole neighborhood by using the preferred grill type: Liquid Propane Grill, Charcoal Grill or the Smoker. For users who like an all in one product, this can be a good choice even though it is a bit pricey.
#5 - The PK 99740 Cast Aluminum Grill/Smoker is another simple classic. This wide cast aluminum grill can last for the rest of your grilling career and allows for both direct and indirect heat. It is also portable so you can have a quality grill at your tailgate party. If you are looking for a basic but effective combo, with a simple aluminum design, then this may be a good option for you.
Quick Comparison Table
254 Square Inches
27 x 18 x 18 inches
447 Square Inches
21.6 x 28.7 x 24.8 inches
429 Square Inches
51 x 21 x 45 inches
860 Square Inches
54 x 23 x 82 inches
301 Square Inches
35 x 20.5 x 35.5 inches
Reviews of the Best Grill Smoker Combo
The Old Smokey is about a simple as a smoker grill combo can get, and sometimes that is what works best. This is a Texas classic and has been a favorite for decades. However, if you do not live in Texas you will probably be the only one on your block that owns one.
It is entirely made of aluminum so rust is not an issue. It is made in the USA, and many owners say they have used theirs for over 30 years.
This is the least expensive option by far, and you can get it for ¼ the cost of the most combo products out there.
However, there are a few downfalls. There is no temperature gauge and you cannot see the bottom vent, making it tough to adjust. One of the biggest issues is that you will likely have to add coals at some point, but to do so you must remove the grate and the food. It also has the smallest cooking surface we reviewed at 254 square inches.
The grill is fairly easy to assemble but you have to be careful. The legs in particular have sharp edges, and it is easy to cut your hands while assembly this product. In addition, the normal assembly puts the grill at knee height. To get it to waist height like other grills you have to buy extensions for the legs.
Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado - Best Smoker Grill Combo
The Akorn Kamado is a cheaper version of the Big Green Egg in its design. This is a very good thing considering how well Green Eggs cook meat, and how expensive they are. I should know as I own their XL model. Many people feel that the Kamado is similar in the quality of meat that is produced, yet it is about 1/3 the cost.
This grill has 314 square inches of cooking area and a warming rack of 133 square inches for a total of 447 square inches.
This combo product is insulated to keep the heat consistent. The real key to this design is the shape. As heat rises it hits the top and then rolls down the sides back to the bottom. This air movement makes the grill act like a convection oven.
The grill will get up to 700 °F and has a built in temperature gauge to help you monitor your cooking process. It is very efficient so you will not need to add coals even after eight to ten hours of cooking. In fact you may have some unburned charcoal left in the bottom when you are done.
This grill is the easiest to assemble of our five, and you can probably get it done in about 40 minutes. It is a little narrow for indirect heat, so you might want to add a cooking stone to protect your meat from the heat.
Camp Chef PG24 - Best Pellet Grill Smoker Combo
This grill is designed for those that want to set it and forget it. It has the most precise temperature control of the five grills we reviewed in this list and is one of the best pellet grill smoker combo. The modern design and digital display really make this unit stand out.
For those that are not familiar with pellet smokers, they are nice. They automatically feed the right amount of wood pellets into the grill to maintain smoke and temperature.
The Camp Chef has a respectable 429 square inches of cooking space. The digital controls let you set your desired temperature or setting, and the grill does the rest. You can set it up to also check the internal temperature of your meat with the push of a button. It also has built in convection fans to keep the air moving and give you an even heat distribution.
This grill has a patented cleanout system that collects all the grease and ashes in one cup. Just dump it out and you are ready for your next grilling session. Camp Chef has also an opening at the bottom of the pellet hopper so you can empty unused pellets. Most pellet smokers force you to scoop them out of the top.
The main downside is its cost which is towards the upper end of our range. It can perform good as a grill and as a smoker too and maxes out at about 500 °F, so high temperature cooking like pizza crusts could be tough. It is also lacking table space to set down your utensils and other items.
Smoke Hollow 4-in-1 PS9900 - Best Propane Grill Smoker Combo
This thing is a beast. The Smoke Hollow has 860 square inches of cooking area and includes a three burner gas grill, a charcoal grill, an offset firebox for smoking, and an infra-red side burner for searing. It is also by far the most expensive model we considered in this list.
If you need to feed 20 plus people, this could be a good fit. It is the only unit that provides a completely separate chamber for two different temperatures. The infra-red burner allows you to sear your meat before or after smoking it without using any of your propane. It has dual temperature gauges and porcelain coated cast iron grates for easy cleanup.
However, this unit has some issues. It is not as air-tight as it should be and It is a bit difficult grill to assemble. So if you are assembling it alone, allow yourself two to two and a half hours to fully complete it.
The biggest issue is that some owners have indicated that rust starts after about two years. As this issue progresses, you may see the grill completely rusted out after about four-five years. So, if this is a good fit for you, you should make sure to regularly clean it and protect it from the rust.
The PK 99740 Grill Smoker Combo is a unique design that has been around for decades. The entire grill-box structure is made of thick cast aluminum including the hinges. Because aluminum does not rust, this grill can actually last a lifetime. It is also make in the USA.
The grill has 301 square inches of cooking surface which is not huge, but is still plenty large to cook for a group of people. It also has a rectangular grill shape allowing for true indirect heat if you pile your coals on one side and put your meat on the other.
Aluminum conducts heat better than steel, so you will get a steady temperature when you cook. The seal on the lid is tight enough that you need not worry about flare-ups. The grate is also hinged so you can add coals any time you like without removing the grate and food. The grill is priced right in the middle of the group we reviewed.
This grill is portable allowing you to remove the grill-box from the stand. This makes it easier to fit in your vehicle for transport. This model has a bit of a cult following with many owners using their grill for over 40 years with no issues. If a simple, reliable design is what you crave this may be a good fit.
How To Choose The Best Smoker Grill Combo
If you are looking at buying the absolute best smoker-grill combo, there are several variables you will want to consider. First we need to distinguish the difference between a grill and a smoker.
A grill is designed for cooking at higher temperatures (anywhere from 275°F to 700°F) with your food directly over the heat. This is often used for food like steaks, burgers, pork chops, or kabobs.
A smoker is designed for cooking low and slow (anywhere from 175°F to 250°F) to break down tougher cuts of meat like briskets, pork butts, and ribs. This is typically done with indirect heat (meat not directly over heat source), and heat is produced with charcoal along with wood chips or chunks providing smoke for flavor.
Of course there are exceptions to the rule. There are smokers that use no charcoal. There are pit-masters that use their smoker to cook chicken thighs hot and fast at 375°F. There are people that rig up their gas grills to smoke meats at lower temperatures.
So why have both? If you are a culinary perfectionist then you will not be happy without both. There are meats that are best cooked over direct heat and meats that are best cooked over indirect heat. Ask anybody that owns both and they will tell you what a huge difference direct-heat and indirect-heat grilling makes.
Here are some things to think about before you start looking:
Answering these questions in advance will help narrow your selection. In fact, it is likely that it would trim your choices down to just one or two models.
Pitfalls To Avoid When Buying The Best Smoker Grill Combo
When it comes to buying the best combo, your decision really comes down to cost versus consistency. If you are smoking meat, keeping your temperature the same through the whole process directly impacts the quality of the finished product. Sometimes technology controls the temperature, and sometimes quality craftsmanship is good enough.
Watch out for these errors that other buyers have made in the past:
If you look at your needs and priorities in advance, the right grill smoker combo can lead to some of the best meat you have ever produced. It will truly allow you to perfect your skills, and will give you the right tools to impress even the toughest critic.
After reviewing all of our options, I found the PK 99740 Cast Aluminum Grill/Smoker to be the clear winner. This grill cannot rust out like the Smoke Hollow and is much less expensive than the Camp Chef.
It has indirect heat unlike the Char-Griller and is waist height unlike the Old Smokey. With this grill you are purchasing a cast aluminum unit that can last the rest of your grilling days. It is easy to use and cooks evenly. In the end simple is often best.
After the PK 99740, the second best smoker grill combo option I think is the Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado. It performs good as a charcoal grill and as a smoker, has good design which will keep the heat consistent, has enough cooking surface for a group of people and is very efficient.
We hope you will take the time to provide feedback on this article and on your best grill smoker combo selection. Thank you from FuriousGrill.com and Happy Grilling!