The Best Traeger Grills to Make a Statement on the Patio

best-traeger-grills

Pellet grills, also commonly called pellet smokers, are outdoor cookers that combine certain elements of kitchen ovens, gas grills, and charcoal smokers.

Despite the name, these units are capable of more than just grilling or smoking. With most of the best Traeger grills on our list today, for instance, you’ll also be able to sear, braise, bake, roast, and BBQ.

The origins of pellet grills can be traced back to the oil crisis of the 1970s. There was an upsurge in demand for affordable and sustainable home heating, and wood pellets gained currency for use in pellet stoves. By the late 1970s, compressed sawdust was sold as wood pellets.

Joe Traeger created the first Traeger pellet grill back in 1985, and this manufacturer remains an industry specialist today, decades later.

Although these early models looked superficially much like classic wood stoves, they operated differently. The first such grills were powered by electricity and harnessed an auger driven by a motor to send a designated amount of the pellets. These were loaded into a hopper and channeled into the fire pit. Here in the fire pit, fan-assisted combustion circulated warm air.

The Traeger pellet grill was patented in 1986. Early models used a three-position controller. This was known as an LMH controller for its low, medium, and high settings. Each of these three settings represented a specific temperature range. A fixed and predetermined duty cycle delivered the temperature.

One of the key drawbacks of the fixed cycle is the fact neither the amount of food nor the ambient temperature are accounted for. Both of these variables influence temperature inside the grill.

Due to this patent, Traeger was the only manufacturer of pellet grills for 20 years, exerting a total stranglehold on the market. Despite this, the company remained a family-run concern. The company limited the distribution of its grills to a selected network of stores.

This patent expired in 2006 and the floodgates were opened for competitors to utilize the same design principles no longer protected under patent.

Even today, though, the Traeger pellet grill is synonymous with style and first-class performance. The line today included the following series:

  • Pro Series
  • Timberline Series
  • Ironwood Series
  • Portable grills
  • First-generation Pro Series

OK, with that glimpse at the company history in place, it’s time to explore the best Traeger grills in a highly impressive range. See if any of these multipurpose grills and smokers make the right fit for your family.

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I. The 7 Best Traeger Grills

1. Our #1 Pick:Traeger Pro Series 575 Grill and Smoker

Traeger-TFB57GLEO-Pro-Series-575-Grill,-Smoker,-Black

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 575 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
  • Dimensions: 27 x 41 x 53 inches

First up in our showcase of the best Traeger grills comes the enduringly popular Pro Series 575. How does this traditional grill and smoker shape up?

Firstly, this grill offers you the same flexibility as most Traegers we review today with the following 6 cooking applications:

  • Smoke
  • Grill
  • BBQ
  • Roast
  • Braise
  • Bake

There and then you get a unit that’s much more versatile than many grills and smokers glutting the market.

The total usable area of 575 square inches translates to enough cooking real estate for 4 chickens, 5 racks of ribs or 24 burgers. This should be ideal for families and anyone occasionally entertaining a few guests.

Using proprietary wood pellets to impart that trademark smoked taste, the 18-pound hopper gives you enough capacity to grill or smoke for hours.

WiFIRE technology allows you to take charge of this grill remotely, allowing you more time to catch up with friends and family without being chained to the smoker. You can also use Alexa on an Echo device for hands-free control.

A class-leading drivetrain channels hardwood pellets into the fire pot on this unit for a totally seamless experience.

This grill has a bulky footprint and weighs 124 pounds, so it makes sense to install it permanently in the yard, or on the patio or deck. If you need to shift the grill around, lockable caster underneath make this possible.

Although the majority of user reviews for this classic model are favorable, we found several complaints about issues with customer service. This doesn’t seem to blight other models in the line to the same extent. Setting aside this minor gripe, you’re getting one of the best Traeger grills with the Pro Series 575, even if it’s not one of the more expensive models in the line.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • 6 cooking applications
  • Spacious cooking area
  • Control grill remotely
  • Customer service can be patchy

2. Traeger Pro Series 34 Pellet Grill

Traeger-Grills-TFB88PZBO-Pro-Series-34-Pellet-Grill-and-Smoker

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 884 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
  • Dimensions: 27 x 53 x 49 inches

The Pro Series 34 pellet grill from Traeger looks compact and space-saving at first glance, yet delivers an impressive total cooking surface area of almost 900 square inches. If you frequently host large cookouts, this might be the best investment you make this summer.

You benefit from the same 6-in-1 functionality the best Traeger grills are famous for. You’ll rapidly discover you can do much more than smoke meat and fish in this thing.

The wood pellets ensure your food is imbued with the smoky taste you’re craving. This model features a generous 18-pound hopper, so you can load on enough fuel to keep you going all day.

The powder steel chassis is built to withstand plenty of punishment while the porcelain grill grates are a cinch to keep clean with food debris discouraged from sticking on.

The advanced grilling logic built into this smoker makes it a beginner-friendly experience for anyone new to grilling and smoking food.

This model is reasonably lightweight at less than 50 pounds, and it also comes equipped with some wheels for easy transportation.

Cook low and slow or hot and fast with this grill and enjoy consistent and reliable temperature maintenance allowing you to cook like a pitmaster even if you’re a complete beginner.

Build quality is exceptional as with all Traeger grills. This might not be the cheapest grill/smoker combo out there, but when you consider the performance and expected lifespan, it suddenly seems like a bargain.

You should be aware that this model has now been superseded, so if you don’t mind picking up an older generation of a modern classic, roll with the Pro Series 34.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Advanced grilling logic baked in
  • Pellets for wood-fired taste
  • Maintains temperature reliably
  • This is an older model

3. Traeger Ironwood 650 Pellet Grill and Smoker

Traeger-Grills-Ironwood-650-Wood-Pellet-Grill-and-Smoker

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 650 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 20 pounds
  • Dimensions: 46 x 27 x 47 inches

Next up comes another robust and high-performing pellet grill and smoker from the ever-reliable Traeger stable. If you’re shopping for cheap grills, you won’t find many Traegers on that list. When you’re comparing the very best smokers and grills, though, this manufacturer is a dominant force.

The Ironwood 650 is another substantial smoker ideal for larger cookouts. The total cooking surface area of 650 square inches is ideal for big families and regular entertainers.

You’ll enjoy remote control using the WiFIRE functionality baked into this grill. Download the free Traeger app on your smart phone or smart device, or use an Echo device if you want hands-free control with Alexa. Several users complain about the app experience, so you might encounter some glitches. We would like to see the app overhauled.

Double-walled insulation keeps all the heat locked inside this smoker. Controlling the temperature is straightforward and the smoker should keep the heat at this level consistently.

This beefier model comes equipped with a 20-pound hopper, so you can load in enough wood pellets to keep going for hours on end. You’ll be alerted to the pellet-levels in app, too, so you’ll never need to worry about running out of fuel mid-cookout. The pellets you use are made from completely natural hardwood and give you that unmistakable smoky taste without needing to rely on messy charcoal.

Overall, this smoker from Traeger delivers the perfect sweet spot of capacity and space-saving dimensions, so what are you waiting for?

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Remote, hands-free control possible
  • Promotes all-weather grilling
  • Smoke, roast, bake, BBQ, braise and grill
  • App could be smoother

4. Traeger Pro Series 22

Traeger-Grills-Pro-Series-22-Pellet-Grill-&-Smoker

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 572 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
  • Dimensions: 41 x 27 x 49 inches

If you’re looking for a classic Traeger pellet grill offering a great combination of space-saving dimensions and a generous cooking area, you should pop the Pro Series 20 on your shortlist.

Of the many configurations available, this is the grill/smoker combo. As with most of the pellet grills in this line, you’ll be free to use the following 6 functions:

  • Smoke
  • Grill
  • BBQ
  • Roast
  • Braise
  • Bake

So, if you though that buying a compact grill/smoker would leave you limited for options, you couldn’t be further from the truth.

The advanced grilling logic means this grill is a beginner-friendly model delivering results not far from what you’d expect from a charcoal grill without all that mess and awkwardness maintaining temperature.

You use the intuitive digital controller to take charge of this Traeger, although you won’t benefit from the app-enabled remote control available on some other Traeger grills.

The 20-pound hopper on this model allows you to load up enough wood pellets to keep you going through a lengthy cookout.

The cover for this model is available separately, and we would recommend opting for this if you’re planning to leave your grill outside.

The all-natural hardwood pellets you use to fuel this grill give you a trademark smoky taste without the attendant grief of cooking with charcoal. Despite their very beginner-friendly nature, this series also works well if you’re a more experienced griller and smoker.

Most user testimony concerning this grill is positive, but we found some scattered complaints concerning temperature maintenance. This minor niggle aside, the Pro Series 20 rates a mention in any collection of the best Traeger grills.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Advanced grilling logic
  • Precise temperature control
  • Superb heat circulation
  • Some issues holding temperature

5. Traeger Grills Ironwood 885

Traeger-Grills-TFB89BLFC-Ironwood-885-Wood-Pellet-Grill-and-Smoker

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 885 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 20 pounds
  • Dimensions: 53 x 27 x 47 inches

The Traeger Ironwood series is popular on decks and patios the world over, so how does this particular model stand out in a crowded pack?

This is a fully smart grill, allowing to take remote control using the WiFIRE technology baked in. If you have an Amazon Echo device, you can also use your favorite digital assistant Alexa for hands-free control.

It’s not the smart functionality but the cooking capacity that’s the main draw here, though. The total surface area is an expansive 885 square inches. Whether you’re catering for a large family or a gathering of guests, this Traeger grill ensures you won’t need to bother with endless batches of food. Load up your smoker and enjoy set-and-forget convenience.

Like all the finest Traeger grills, this one gives you the benefit of 6 discrete cooking functions, offering you far more than just a grill or smoker.

This model utilizes the uprated drivetrain, meaning it starts quicker, heats up quicker, and gives out a superior quality of smoke.

The only real blowback we could find related to the Traeger Ironwood 885 concern some reports of paint peeling off. You should do your own due diligence here. Overall, you’re getting a spacious and efefctive cookout station to grace any backyard this summer. As with all Traeger grills, you’ll need to be prepared to dig deep for the privilege.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • WiFIRE controller
  • Expansive cooking surface area
  • Multipurpose functionality
  • Some reports of paint peeling

6. Traeger Grills Pro Series 780

Traeger-Grills-Pro-Series-780-Wood-Pellet-Grill-and-Smoker

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 780 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
  • Dimensions: 48.7 x 26.7 x 54.4 inches

As we inch to the end of our curated selection of the best Traeger grills, we have another entry from the inimitable Pro Series, this time the 780. In line with the Traeger naming convention, this grill has a total cooking surface area of 780 square inches, ideal for larger cookouts.

Available in matte black or this muted bronze finish, this grill will make an attractive addition to any patio or deck. We understand you’re not buying a grill like this for the way it looks, though.

The sprawling cooking area allows you to rustle up 6 chickens, 6 racks of ribs, or 34 burgers in a single session, ideal for feeding hungry hordes after the football match.

As with most of the upscale Traeger grills, this one comes equipped with an overhauled drivetrain, triggering many benefits. The grill will heat up quicker than older models, and the overall smoke quality is superior, too.

Another smart grill, you can control the Pro Series in-app. As we mentioned previously, the experience in-app is not always seamless, so if you tend to get easily frustrated with tech glitches, this might not be the right model for you. If you have an Echo device in the house, you can even control the grill hands-free.

One of the best-selling pellet grills in a glutted market segment, the Traeger Pro Series 780 remains a valid purchase today if you’re looking for an adaptable grill from an industry legend. The only real complaints we could find concern the stiff price tag common to all Traeger grills.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Antique bronze finish
  • Upgraded drivetrain
  • Cook 34 burgers in one sitting
  • Reasonably pricey

7. Traeger Bronson 20 Pellet Grill

TRAEGER-BRONSON-20-PELLET-GRILL

Features

  • Total cooking surface area: 300 square inches
  • Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
  • Dimensions: 38 x 25 x 22 inches

Last but certainly not least in our showcase of the best Traeger grills, it’s time for the Bronson 20. How does this unit differentiate itself, then?

Well, this wood-fired assault grill is finished in a muted matte black and delivers a strong and stable grilling experience thanks to the traditional sawhorse chassis.

This unit comes HOA-approved as there is no open flame. This allows you to place it on your patio or decking in a condo unit without any concerns of safety issues.

The compact grill still manages to deliver a generous total cooking surface area of 300 square inches. To put this into perspective, you could roast 2 chickens or 3 rib racks, or alternatively you’ll have space for a dozen succulent burgers. While this might not cut the ice for a large gathering, you’ll easily cook up food for a small family and a couple of guests.

Reaching a maximum temperature of 450F, the Traeger Bronson gives you the scope to create a diverse range of grilled and smoked foods with all the benefits of charcoal but none of the drawbacks.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Digital Elite controller
  • Control temperature to 450F
  • Rugged sawhorse chassis
  • Not the most stable temperature maintenancev

II. Conclusion

Well, we hope today’s glimpse at the best Traeger grills in their impressive range has given you a variety of options if you’re looking to upgrade your cookout equipment.

This brand delivers something for everyone, from compact tailgating grills to full-size smokers ideal for any backyard. We have included a broad cross-section of pellet grills today coming in at a variety of price points and sizes.

If you stick with one of the models we review today, we feel you now have an unbiased and comprehensive overview of how they stand and fall. We never disguise the flaws of any products we review. If, on the other hand, you didn’t find quite what you were looking for, why not explore the entire range of Traeger grills?

Before you head off today, bookmark Madiba. We have a busy content calendar for the coming summer months, so be sure to pop back any time you need advice on grilling and smoking food. See you soon!

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