10 Best Charcoal Grills of 2024 Suggested by Experts

10 Best Charcoal Grills of 2024 Suggested by Experts

For the gorgeous, smokey taste that charcoal imparts to your cuisine, from hamburgers and hot dogs to pulled pork and pizza, charcoal grills are a must-have for home cooks. Additionally, charcoal grills are typically cheaper than pellet or gas barbecues, allowing even those on a limited budget to cook outdoors.

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The structure of a charcoal barbecue is much simpler than a gas grill. They are mainly coal storage containers with lids and racks. Nevertheless, some models are unquestionably superior to others. We delivered some of the most well-liked models to our testers' homes in order to assist you in making the best decision. Many weeks were spent cooking outside to properly test a grill's heat retention, temperature control and cleanup after supper.  Additionally, they evaluated whether or not any features make using the grill easier or more difficult and how simple it is to set up right out of the box.


The following models are our top five best charcoal grills of 2024.


Read reviews of 5 best charcoal grills before making your final decision. You can scroll down for more options.

1. Weber Original Kettle – Best Overall 


  • 26-inch diameter 

  • Vents can be adjusted

  • Lid has built-in thermometer 


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  • Movable cooking grate

  • Wheeled frame

  • Porcelain enamel coating

  • One-touch ash catcher


  • Expensive 

  • Slightly short at a height of only 42 inches. 

The best charcoal grill available is the Weber Original Kettle, which is the standard model. The original design is ideal for smoking harder portions like brisket and ribs as well as grilling food over direct and indirect heat. The astounding 508 square inches of cooking space provided by the 26-inch diameter gives enough room for two entire spatchcocked chickens or 19 hamburgers. The stainless steel grill grate has a hinge that makes it easy to adjust the coals to remove hotspots or add extra fuel as needed.

Two 8-inch plastic wheels on The Original Kettle make it simpler to move the grill around your deck or patio so that it stays out of the way or gets to a more practical cooking spot. Porcelain enamel coatings are present on the grill's lid and body to help shield them from scratches and rust and maintain your grill's conditions year after year. 

2. Weber Original Kettle 18-Inch Charcoal Grill – Best Budget Charcoal Grill


  • Cooking Area: 240 square inches

  • Dimension: 36 x 18.5 x 23 inches 


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  • Easy to put together

  • Constructed of long-lasting material

  • Handle remains cool from heat shield


  • Difficult to attach the spring clips for the ash catcher 

  • Only two people can be fed comfortably at the cooking area.

A more affordable alternative to our top recommendation, the Weber Original Kettle 18-Inch Charcoal Grill, might be something worth taking a look at. While being smaller and lacking a few functionalities of the Premium model, this reasonably priced Weber Kettle Grill nevertheless produces mouthwatering grilled dishes with the distinctive smokey flavor of charcoal.

This grill has an enameled porcelain bowl and lid, lid hook, and easily adjustable dampers. Its plated steel cooking grate can accommodate up to nine hamburgers. For easy transportation, it comes with sturdy wheels. In addition, the one-touch cleaning mechanism that wipes trash and ash into the ash collector that's rust-resistant allows for rapid cleanup. 

3. Char-Griller E16620 Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill – Best Kamado


  • Cooking Area: 447 square inches

  • Dimension: 45 x 31 x 47 inches


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  • Fantastic heat retention

  • More affordable than rivals 

  • Cleaning is easy


  • Difficult to cool down

  • Grate requires initial seasoning

Kamado-style grills were developed in Asia over 3,000 years ago. Due to their exceptional flexibility, these oval-shaped cooking appliances have grown in popularity in the United States. Baking and smoking  can be achieved on kamado grills such as the Char-Griller AKORN Kamado Charcoal Grill. They produce heat quickly and give food greater taste.

This specific kamado grill is made of triple-walled steel and has a 314 square inch cast iron grill and a detachable warming rack. An integrated thermometer is included and the grill can be used to cook at temperatures between 200 and 700 degrees. Utensil hooks and two useful folding side shelves are provided on the grill. We also loved how the warming rack proved to be the ideal bun warmer and how the grates got more nonstick as the testing progressed.

4. Weber 10020 Smokey Joe 14-Inch Portable Charcoal Grill – Best Portable 


  • Cooking Area: 147 square inches

  • Dimension: 17 x 14.2 x 14.5 inches


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  • Portable

  • Inexpensive

  • Assembling takes less than 15 minutes


  • Side handles are not provided

  • With cover on, there’s not much airflow. 

Searching for a charcoal barbecue to take to the big game or your upcoming outdoor excursion? The Weber Smokey Joe portable charcoal grill should then be given some thought. This 14-inch grill contains steel grates, an ash catcher, and a porcelain-enameled bowl and lid, just like the brand's full-size versions.

Up to five hamburgers can be cooked at once on this foldable charcoal grill, and the glass-reinforced nylon handle of the lid stays cool while in use. According to reviews, this product is an outstanding value because it's convenient to transport to different events and produces meals of the same great quality as full-size Weber grills.

5. Weber Performer Deluxe 22-Inch Charcoal Grill – Best Splurge


  • Cooking Area: 363 square inches

  • Dimension: 43.5 x 48 x 30 inches 


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  • Durable 

  • Easy gas ignition system

  • Side area is large enough to prepare and store food

  • Excellent customer service


  • Costly 

  • Two interior screws can interrupt removing/inserting grate

Weber makes the pricey Performer Deluxe 22-Inch Charcoal Grill and is one of the most popular charcoal grill manufacturers today. Any grill master would like the Touch-N-Go gas ignition system and the work table for meal preparation that are included in this model.

The internal temperature of the burgers can be monitored using the integrated lid thermometer on this charcoal grill, which has a capacity for up to 13 burgers at once. This Performer Deluxe grill features a detachable timer that mounts to the side work table and an electronic charcoal ignition system. In addition, a useful charcoal storage container and the company's one-touch cleaning mechanism are incorporated into the design. According to reviews, this device is of excellent quality, and the grill will surely serve you well for many years to come.


1. How do I put out a charcoal grill?

The best way to extinguish hot coals after cooking is to shut the lid and close both the lower and upper vents to stop the oxygen supply. The coals can be put out by closing the vents and lid, however it might take some time for the coals to cool down.

2. How do I clean a charcoal grill?

You can use a wire grill brush or a scraper to clean the grates after putting out the coal and letting the grill cool. If necessary, you can remove the grates and soak them in water and soap for several hours to help remove grease and burnt-on food. After cleaning them, make sure to lubricate them with a paper towel or rag to avoid rust.

Additionally, use a light soap to clean the interior of the bowl and lid.  Finally, remove all of the ash from the ash catcher of your grill.

3. How do I start a charcoal grill?

The most effective method for lighting a charcoal grill is to utilize a chimney starter. The charcoal will be ready for the grill in about 10 minutes if you simply lay some crumpled newspaper in the tool's bottom that's covered with charcoal on the top and light the bottom first.

You may also use an electric charcoal lighter to start the coals on the grill by placing it there with the charcoal.


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The Weber Original Kettle is, in our opinion, the best charcoal grill that's worthy of your investment. Its classic and basic design with ample cooking surface area and excellent temperature control allow for uniform cooking across a wide range of dishes.  The cooking grate has a hinge as well, making it simple to add more fuel, rearrange the coals for indirect heat grilling, or get rid of hot spots. Cleaning out the grill is also a breeze thanks to the one-touch ash door.

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