What is a Flat Top Grill?
When I think of a flat top grill, I think of diners cooking up those great tasting greasy burgers. But how can a flat top grill help you? Well, flat top grills offer versatility, portability, and ease of use that few other grills can offer. It’s a smooth cooking surface allowing you to sear burgers, fry bacon, flip pancakes and even have a sauce pan on as well.
If entertaining or hosting large gatherings, a flat top grill overs you a large space to allow a lot of cooking done at once. While you aren’t using an open flame you will still have a seasoned griddle that imparts a delicious and unique flavor on anything you cook. The Camp Chef flat top grill, that is reviewed below, gives you interchangeable griddles, so you can cook your breakfast food on a different surface than your hamburgers or hibachi. However, if portability is important to you, the Blackstone, reviewed below, allows you to fold the legs and side tables down to take it camping or to your next fundraising pancake breakfast. All the grills in this article run on propane and have two to four separate burners, so you only have to heat the amount of grill space you need. Many who have started using flat top grills do a lot of day to day cooking on them, especially in the summer when you don’t want to overheat the house. Let’s get started!
Flat Top Grill Options
There are two main players with the flat top grill. Blackstone and Camp Chef. Both are well respected and have great reviews from customers. One is more portable than the other, and one has interchangeable grates. You have to decide which one would meet your needs. If you like the idea of a flat top grill but don’t need a large one or have room for one, Blackstone offers a table top version. Let’s get started!
The Blackstone Outdoor Grill has more than ample grill space, with a whopping 720 sq. inches, heated by four individual heating elements, each capable of outputting 15,000 BTUs. These four elements can be turned on and off independently and be set at varying heat levels. This offers superior heat control over your food, and allowing you to keep food warm after it has been cooked while continuing to cook more food. With a traditional grill, you have to be mindful of cold spots and adjusting your coals as necessary. This eliminates that issue altogether, and also allows you to use it for multiple styles of food, like breakfast, burgers, and hibachi-style dishes. Pretty much anything you can set your mind to! With this kind of space, you can have 28 burgers on the grill OR 72 hot dogs going at once.
It has four locking castor wheels, maximizing transportability and maneuverability, plus it has folding legs to make stowing this grill away a breeze. It has an interchangeable flat top, if you wanted to keep your breakfast food griddle separate from your burger griddle.
It is important to note that this grill comes with a griddle that requires seasoning before use. Instructions are included on how to wash the protective oil off, and a guide on how to season it before its first use. This could be a nuisance to anyone wanting a griddle that’s pre-seasoned and ready to grill right out of the box.
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The Camp Chef Flat Top Grill is also a very reputable flat top grill. Like the Blackstone, the Camp Chef has four independent burners for maximum heat control and even cooking. Each burner is capable of outputting 12,000 BTUs. The Camp Chef also has a built in grease trap, propane holder, and foldable side tables for prep work. With those exceptions, the Camp Chef differs in subtle ways to the Blackstone Outdoor Grill.
The Camp Chef has two storage tables underneath the griddle, adding significant storage space. Although it only has two castor wheels and two adjustable leg pegs (instead of a set of four wheels).
The Camp Chef griddle also includes interchangeable grilling grates that come pre-seasoned. This means it’s ready to use right out of the box, and requires no laborious cleaning and seasoning like the Blackstone.
While this grill also comes with two collapsible side tables, providing extra space for plates and food prep, it does not have collapsible legs. This could pose a problem if you plan to transport this grill with you to your event or campsites.
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- 339 sq. inches of grilling space
- 24,000 BTU output
- 2 “H” style burners with controls
- Built-in igniters
- Uses propane (1 lb. bottles or connect a tank with hose)
This flat top grill deserves to be on this list. If you saw this review just to see what a flat top grill was and really had no use for a big one but you were intrigued, this one is for you! This is a great option if you are having a small gathering, tailgating or put it in the RV. It’s easy to throw into the car, especially if you don’t have a large vehicle. If you live in a small space or apartment, it would be perfect for the patio. There is even a smaller version here 17″. Remember, although this is a smaller “table top” flat top grill, this uses bottled propane and it should remain outdoors.
Our Choice for the Best Flat Top Grill Winner:
Our choice for the best flat top grill winner is the Camp Chef. Camp Chef puts out quality product in every area. In our opinion, both of these grills are tremendous at cranking out large amounts of food at an efficient pace. Although this flat top grill is slightly more expensive than the Blackstone, it comes with interchangeable grates leaving you endless options for your grilling needs. Even without having the collapsable legs, it can be loaded into the back of a truck and strapped down if portability is a factor.