June 22, 2020

Whether it’s summer or not, grilling is something we enjoy doing in our backyards. The mouthwatering smell of steaks and burgers is enough to fuel any party. If you’re planning on hosting one, electric and gas grills are two options to consider. 

Here, we discuss their differences. 

Features of Electric VS Gas Grills

Cooking Area

Right from the get-go, a noticeable difference between an electric and gas grill is the cooking capacity.

Electric grills provide a much smaller space compared to gas grills. Although there are bigger electric models out there, such as the Cookshack Amerique, it’s unlikely for you to find something with more than 280 square inches of space. 

Even then, that’s just enough for two to five people - maybe for a couple or a bunch of friends having a BBQ get-together. 

On the other hand, gas grills give you more variety when it comes to size. You can buy a small one that’s fit for a small family, or you can opt for a grill that can handle a big BBQ party. Gas grills can range from 220 square inches to more than 700 square inches of cooking surface. 

So the real question here is, how many people will you be serving on a regular basis? If you’re only cooking for a few, an electric grill would do the job. If you plan on hosting a big crowd in the coming months or years, a gas grill would be the better choice. 

shish kebabs on a grill

Space Requirement

Space is one of the most common buyer concerns when purchasing a grill. While some may have a nice backyard that can accommodate big gas grills or even an entire outdoor kitchen island, many of us don’t have that kind of space.

Furthermore, some of us live in apartments where gas cooking is not allowed. An electric grill would be the ideal choice in this case because you can just plug it in and start cooking. You can use it indoors or outdoors as you please, so you don’t necessarily need a dedicated area in your backyard.

As for gas grills, you need to place it outdoors. It typically needs more space, especially if you’re buying a large model. Also, it’s important to remember not to place a gas grill too close to any combustible material.

Quality of Food

Since a gas grill uses open flames to heat the cooking grates, air, and food, it really provides that smoky barbecue flavor. A gas grill will be able to deliver that authentic steakhouse quality taste, which is further elevated by the dripping juices, rubs [1], and charred fat.

Alas, this kind of flavor is something no electric grill can provide. However, an electric grill has its own perks when it comes to cooking techniques. Heat is easily maintained, particularly because it holds in temperatures well.

Plus, you’d rarely experience flare-ups at all with an electric grill, so there’s no charring and the results are very consistent. Whether it’s fish, meat, or veggies, you’d have no trouble cooking it on an electric grill.

meat being cooked in fire beside a glass

Power Source and Ease of Use

Electric grills don’t need charcoal or gas in order to function. You just need to plug them into an outlet and you’ll be ready to cook. 

Their small size and power source make electric grills easy to move around. If you’re going camping or you just prefer a portable option, it’s definitely a good choice. 

Gas grills, on the other hand, can either be fueled with propane or natural gas. For propane, the grill would have a propane tank that you’d have to refill at a gas station or a convenience store when it runs out. For natural gas, you’d need to have a natural gas line installed. 

So compared to an electric grill, a gas grill is more of a permanent installation. Still, it’s worth mentioning that there are portable gas grills you can take anywhere as well.

Both gas and electric grills are easy to start. When it comes to temperature, however, an electric grill is more beginner-friendly since temp adjustments are more precise. You just need to turn a knob up or down to adjust the heat.

While temperature adjustments are pretty easy in gas grills as well (you just need to turn some knobs), the precision doesn’t quite match that of the electric grill. For beginner grillers, it might take some time to get the settings just right, especially for different cooking techniques.

hamburger, fries and coleslaw on a table

Versatility

Speaking of cooking techniques, a gas grill trumps the electric grill when it comes to versatility. Sure, an electric grill also has high-heat capabilities and you will see consistent results, but other than that, it doesn’t have much to offer.

On a gas grill, you’ll have way more options. Having at least two burners will allow you to do 2-zone cooking, where one burner has a high temperature and the other burner has a lower temperature.

Furthermore, you can smoke, roast, and even bake on your gas grill - things you can’t really do on an electric.

Maintenance

Cleaning and maintaining your grill plays an important part in its longevity. Of course, you don’t want it to deteriorate much faster than it should. But in this aspect, an electric grill is easier to take care of than the gas grill.

For the electric grill, you just need to wipe it down with the damp cloth and keep the parts dry. You may remove the grates or the entire cooktop to give it a thorough cleaning. Store it somewhere dry and you’re good to go.

On the other hand, a gas grill requires more than a wipe-down. You have to scrape off any leftover food debris, check the gas connections to make sure there’s no leak, check the burners if they remain secure, and look out for rust in the tubes.

steak with garnish

Final Words

A gas grill and electric grill both has its perks and disadvantages, so it just comes down to personal preferences.

An electric grill is ideal for those who need a small grill for indoor use. It’s easy to use, produces consistent food quality, is great for delicate meats, and requires minimal maintenance, just like the Cookshack Smokette Elite.

A gas grill is perfect for those who need a bigger cooking area for large outdoor BBQ parties. It produces that authentic smoky flavor and provides great versatility, allowing you to sear, steam, smoke, and cook in different heat zones simultaneously.


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