Some folks love the smokey flavor that charcoal imparts to food. Others don’t. So which type of grill should you get to keep everyone happy? A combo grill can help to solve this dilemma. But there are so many features and options nowadays. It can be frustrating trying to learn about what’s what. How about if we explain the features and show you the gas charcoal combo grills?
We tested the biggest sellers from the most popular brands. Draw on our conclusions and learn how to pick the most useful and valuable grill for your money.
Let’s get cooking.
All of these grills pass our stringent quality, durability, and functionality guidelines. We think that one of these would be top for you.
Best Gas Charcoal Combo Grills
1. Char-Griller 5030 2 Burner Gas & Charcoal Grill
This is a good hot little grill that can be turned into a smoker with the addition of a side firebox, which is a separate purchase. It can handle all of your backyard barbeque needs.
In a nutshell, it’s a dependable, high-quality grill that’s easy to use and clean. When you put that against the price, you get the combo grill for the money.
Most two-burner propane grills don’t put out as much heat as this one. People noticed that, and they like how quickly it sears meat. And they comment on how easy it is to clean, thanks to the non-stick grate and ashtray. Some have used it as a smoker. That kind of versatility is a big winner.
- Made of strong triple-wall steel with a durable powder-coated finish
- 606 sq in the cooking area and 270 sq in the warming rack
- Non-stick porcelain-coated cast-iron grates
- Adjustable grate for precise charcoal cooking
- Two propane burners put out 24000 BTUs for quick searing
- The built-in temperature gauge shows the cook box temp at a glance
- Easy-to-dump ashtray
- Can be used with a side burner box for smoking
- A heavy-duty side shelf keeps spices and accessories at hand
- Long 5-year warranty
- Can get very hot with propane
- Adjustable grates
- Can be converted to a smoker
- Easy to clean
- Long warranty
- Many complaints about customer service
2. Char-Broil Gas2Coal 3-Burner Liquid Propane and Charcoal Hybrid Grill
The best feature of this small gas charcoal combo grill is how evenly it heats. We’ve not seen a grill that cooks so well on the sides as well as the middle. Chalk that up to the three main burners. But this applies when you use it as a charcoal grill as well. There are fewer flare-ups, so there are fewer hot spots.
The only bad thing is the enamel on the exterior is likely too thin. Some have complained of small rust spots after a few years. This is considered normal wear and tear and is therefore usually not covered by the warranty.
Folks talk about how even the heat is. And it’s no wonder. There are many reviews online that say that food cooked on the sides of the grate cooks at about the same rate as the stuff in the middle.
It takes a little trial and error to get the burners adjusted correctly, but it’s nice to have such an even cooking temp. The general feeling is that this grill is so well-designed that even amateurs can cook like pros.
- Handsome and durable enameled steel construction
- 420 sq in the main cooking area and 120 sq in the warming rack
- Easy clean porcelain-coated cast-iron grates
- Grates adjust for height for easy temp control
- Three main stainless steel burners deliver 40000 BTUs
- 12000 BTU side burner for sauces and sides
- An accurate temp gauge on the lid lets you monitor the temperature without opening the lid
- A special charcoal tray reduces flare-ups
- Large side shelf for storing essentials while cooking
- Electronic ignition is much safer than matches
- 3-year warranty
- Very even heat
- Fewer flare-ups
- Big side shelf
- Reports of rusting exterior
3. Oklahoma Joe’s Charcoal/Gas/Smoker Combo
Some grills function as a smoker but fall short in areas like insulation and efficiency. Well, this grill is a smoker, so there’s no compromise there. You can slow smoke a roast overnight, then fire up the charcoal or propane burners and start roasting corn and burgers the next morning.
But what makes it stand out as the gas charcoal smoker combo is the quality of the build. It has lasted many people for years with no issues and no rust or malfunctioning burners.
The traditional drum-shaped smoker design makes people happy. The fact that it functions as a smoker is a big selling point. Everyone likes that they don’t have to settle for the inconvenience of having to add charcoal or wood several times as they would with a grill during long, slow-smoking sessions.
- Heavy-duty, thick, well-insulated steel body
- Rugged and durable cast iron cooking grate
- Separate cooking chambers
- 750 sq in the main cooking area and 310 sq in the secondary
- Three main burners put out 36000 BTUs and the side burner is 12000
- Highly accurate temp gauge in the lid
- Big ashtray
- Thick firebox
- Side and bottom shelves and a wire storage rack keep all your stuff on the grill
- 2-year warranty
- Very efficient on charcoal
- Decent amount of heat from the propane burners
- Large cook area
- Plenty of storage
- Tough build
- A bit heavy and bulky
4. Royal Gourmet ZH3002 3-Burner Cabinet Gas Grill and Charcoal Grill Combo
The main differences between Royal Gourmet’s ZH3003 and ZH3002 are in the design features. This one has that classic rounded drum design that just oozes authenticity. The bottom storage area has doors for a neater and more professional look.
It’s dependable and a joy to use. But, like the other Royal Gourmet grill on our list, it doesn’t get quite hot enough to sear quickly. Other than that, it’s a good grill for amateurs and pros alike.
The biggest brags are about the storage cabinet and the deep and wide cooking area. The most common gripe is about the propane side not putting out enough heat. But the consensus is that it’s a great grill for the backyard. We’ve seen a lot of recommendations from seasoned cooks.
- Made of double-wall stainless steel for enhanced durability and fantastic insulation
- About 600 sq in of main cooking area with 120 sq in a warming tray
- The solid stainless steel grate is very resistant to rust
- The charcoal tray adjusts up and down for simple temperature control on the charcoal side
- About 27000 BTUs from three stainless steel burners is good for cooking all but the most intensely seared meats
- A Built-in temp gauge takes the guesswork out of the equation
- The pull-out ashtray is easy to dump
- Two side shelves plus a storage cabinet on the bottom
- 1-year warranty
- Totally separate charcoal and gas cooking compartments
- Lots of storage
- A good amount of cooking space
- Propane burners need to put out more heat
5. Dual Fuel Combination Charcoal/Gas Grill
You can have a BBQ grill propane and charcoal combo without going broke. You’ll give up some durability, but this one will last if you are careful while moving and cleaning it.
It’s a basic stainless steel grill. If you can do without the bells and whistles that add to the convenience and price of higher-end grills, you’ll be happy with the deal you can get here.
Frugal people are happy with the way this grill fits into their budget. We see comments about how some were afraid of getting ripped off at this price, so we followed those reviews. Those who posted updates were usually pretty happy with their grill years later.
The one complaint that we saw the most was dents and dings. The savings come from the material, so this isn’t the most durable grill out there.
- Strong stainless steel cook box and steel alloy frame
- 557 sq in the cooking area and 180 sq in the warming rack
- Stainless steel grate provides excellent sear marks
- Three main stainless steel burners crank out about 27000 BTUs while the side burner supplies about 900
- Grate adjusts to control charcoal temps
- Big, easy-to-see temp gauge in the lid
- The sturdy, convenient side shelf
- 1-year warranty
- Great price and value
- Simple design
- Easy to use
- The walls are pretty thin
6. Pit Boss Memphis Ultimate 4-in-1 LP Gas, Charcoal, Smoker
This isn’t just a dual-fuel grill. It’s a triple-fuel cooking dynamo. You have your propane chamber and your charcoal side. Then there’s the electric smoke box. You get it going with your favorite hardwood and adjust the output vents to control how much smoke transfers into the propane compartment. That design is simple and elegant.
But you may need an entire afternoon to put it together. And don’t expect any assembly help from customer service.
This grill has a lot of fans. The big thing is that it includes an electric smoker. It’s hard to find a unit that combines propane burners, a charcoal side, and an electric smoker that’s built right.
There have been a few durability complaints. And the warranty only covers parts. So when there’s a problem, people get the parts delivered to them and have to have it fixed themselves. Considering how difficult it is to assemble this grill, that can be a major inconvenience.
- Thick steel body and frame
- Huge 1330 sq in the main cooking area and a spacious 900 sq in of warming space
- Easy clean porcelain-coated steel cast iron cook grates
- Three stainless steel propane burners deliver 36000 BTUs for awesome heat
- Electric smoking element offers easier and simpler control over smoking
- Front-access wood tray is easy to get to
- Two big strong side shelves
- 1-year warranty on parts
- Electric smoker element
- Large cooking area
- High heat output
- Easy access to the wood box and ashtray
- Hard to assemble
- The warranty doesn’t cover labor for repairs
How To Choose a Gas Charcoal Combo Grills
This section will teach you about the important features you should look for and answer the most common questions people have.
Factors To Consider
If you come across a grill that’s made entirely of cast iron, it’s a commercial model. You need steel.
Check out the protection. Powder coating costs more, but it’s more durable. Enamel looks better, but it can chip if you’re not careful.
Choose a grill with double or triple walls if you slow cook a lot. You’ll end up using less gas and charcoal with that better insulation.
Make sure you get a grill with the cooking area you need. As a general rule, you can fit five burgers per 100 sq in of cooking space. But be careful. Make sure you don’t factor the area of the warming rack in. The warming rack is for keeping cooked foods hot and toasting buns.
What kind of cooking grate is best? That depends on your cooking style. Stainless steel grates make incredible sear marks. But meat can stick to them.
Cast iron has the properties of steel but is more durable. Porcelain-coated steel and iron grates are non-stick and pretty durable, but the porcelain can chip if you’re too rough with your cooking utensils.
A grill that uses charcoal and propane will normally have two or three burners.
Regardless of size, three burners provide more heat for better searing, and that heat is more even for more consistent cooking.
But if a grill has less than 550 sq in of cooking area, it only really needs two burners.
Each burner should supply at least 9000 BTUs to be efficient. Side burners are good for simmering sauces and cooking beans and other sides.
Almost all grills have a side shelf. You need one to keep your spices and other cooking supplies handy. Check out the actual storage space to make sure it’s big enough.
You don’t want to have to keep running in your house to get what you need. If your grill is going to be a permanent part of your yard, consider a grill with a storage cabinet.
Accept a 1-year warranty at a minimum. That will give any factory defects time to show themselves. 3-year warranties are around, and that’s a big plus.
You may even find warranties that run for five or 10 years.
That’s great, but don’t be too picky. Get a grill with good build quality. Then you’ll be unlikely to need to file a warranty claim in the first place.
People often ask us how much they should pay for this kind of grill. It depends on several factors. Big names command a higher price for their higher quality. Convenience adds to the cost as well.
If you’re looking for a budget combo grill, expect to pay between $250 and $300. For up to $450, you can get a sturdier grill with such special features as extra storage space and porcelain-coated grates. Getting close to $1000, you’ll start seeing huge cooking grates and electric smoker elements.
Can they be used for smoking?Any grill that burns charcoal can be used for smoking, but you’ll get much better results if you get a grill with a firebox. They’re more efficient with wood. And they usually have better insulation for more even heat.
Can I cook with charcoal and gas at the same time?Yes, you can. Be aware that, even with the best combination grills, there’s no way to keep all of the charcoal smoke out of the gas side of the grill. But you can use each side separately or both at the same time.
Do they come with smart features?Remote temperature monitoring and app connectivity are smart features that you can find on some gas grills. But combo grill technology has largely lagged behind. There are a few dual-fuel grills that incorporate smart features, but we’ll keep you posted as the tech catches up.
Can they be used indoors?The gas side can be used indoors in certain situations. There has to be good ventilation and an exhaust hood directly over the grill. Charcoal should never be used indoors due to the risk of carbon monoxide buildup.
The all-around combo grill is the Char-Griller 5030. It is functional, built well, and easy to use. And it carries a great price.
Char-Broil’s Gas2Coal Hybrid offers a smaller cooking area, but it’s a step up in quality. It has porcelain-coated grates, one more burner, and a special design that greatly reduces flare-ups. It costs a little more, but it’s worth it if you want better durability and extra heat.
If you have a premium grill in mind, check out the Royal Gourmet ZH3003. Its gas and charcoal sides are separate, and there is little seepage of smoke and vaporized grease from one side to the next. There is a lot of storage space as well. Plus you have excellent build quality. All of this comes at a price that fits most budgets.
Our budget pick is Blossomz Dual Fuel Combination Grill. It’s bare-bones, but you can have it for about $250. Don’t worry. We wouldn’t recommend it if it wasn’t a dependable grill with good value.
Now is the time to choose the combination of propane and charcoal grill, while the prices are still low. We think you’ll discover a new dimension of backyard cooking the day you get your new grill.