Gas Vs. Electric Grills: The War Between the Kings of Convenience
In a fast-paced world, where people are always running out of time, waiting for things in life is no longer a necessity. Technology has made life utterly simple, and this is true for BBQ too! From cooking over coal to using gas and electricity, we’ve witnessed a revolutionary change in cooking.
Although charcoal grilling has an unbeatable charbroiled flavor, cooking on a charcoal grill can often be challenging to master. This can take a long time, and many don’t have the time or desire to learn charcoal grilling.
This is where gas and electric grills come in. These grills are famous for their ease of use, convenience, and versatility. They offer several features that have made them a contemporary favorite of the masses.
Introducing Gas And Electric Grills
Let’s examine them each, one at a time:
What are Electric Grills?
These are grilling devices that convert electricity into radiant or conductive heat. Electric grills that use conduction to heat the food have a sandwich-toaster like surface, while those that use radiant heat use grill racks to ensure efficient heating.
Electric grills are most commonly used by those who live in apartment buildings. This is because barbecue grills must comply with local fire regulations.
People also prefer electric grills over other types of grills because of their convenience. The low price, small size, and user-friendliness of electric grills make them a choice.
What are Gas Grills?
Gas grills are fueled by cooking gases like Propane (LPG), natural gas, or Butane. They burn the gas to heat up the BBQ heat diffusers, which heats the food on the grill. They are convenient to use, usually made from stainless steel, and often occupy more space than other grill types.
If you have a gas connection to your house, gas grills can have the lowest fuel costs at the cost of portability. Whereas gas bottles allow you to grill in the open, but refueling can be time-consuming.
Gas Grills Vs. Electric Grills. Which is Better?
Now that we’ve acquainted ourselves with Electric and Gas grills, let’s find out which one is better.
The truth is they’re both excellent choices. Gas grills and electric grills are two very different types of grills that serve different functions. To help make your decision easier, here’s a comparison of the two based on their features:
People often argue that if a grill doesn’t deliver an authentic grilled flavor, then it shouldn’t be called a grill in the first place.
Electric grills can cook the meat and even produce satisfactory grill marks, but they can’t achieve the smoky flavor of gas grilled food. Electric grills also produce uniform heat. This means that you will often have to cook different cuts of meat separately so that you don’t risk burning your food. Gas grills, on the other hand, can deliver an authentic taste most reliably. This is why most expensive steakhouses use gas grills.
For many years, there was a stark contrast between the flavor of food produced on a gas grill and electric grills. However, with the invention of the latest radiant heat electric grills, the difference in flavor is not as pronounced as before. Gas grills still produce tastier food than electric grills – especially if you are using BBQ Heat Diffusers.
If you have your heart set on an electric grill and are looking for ways to improve the flavor, try doing the following:
- Marinate the meat for 20-30 minutes before the cook
- Preheat the grill for at least ten minutes before you begin grilling the food
- Oil the grill with olive or sesame oil to prevent your food from sticking to it
Electric Grills are safer because they are not prone to flare-ups, which makes them more reliable than gas grills. To avoid flare-ups in your gas grill, make sure to use BBQ Heat Diffusers and clean your grill regularly.
Electric grills are also the safest grills to store because they eliminate fire risk. Being small and lightweight means that they are more convenient to disconnect and store. When unplugged, electric grills can’t start a fire. Don’t get me wrong! Gas bottles are generally safe, but people often neglect BBQ Gas Bottle Safety and face considerable fire safety risks.
While both gas and electric grills come in various sizes, the total space it occupies isn’t the same for a given grilling area. If you have space constraints, this would be an essential point to think about.
Electric grills are the most space-efficient grills, whereas gas grills take up a considerable amount of space and are best for those who have a big kitchen or backyard. Gas grills also need the roof to be 10 feet away from the grill because they are prone to flare-ups. Electric grills can be used in enclosed spaces without any problem.
If you plan on cooking for many people, you will need a bigger grilling area. Gas grills have a greater variety of large grills.
If you want to use your grill when you are camping or Tailgating, portability is key.
Electric grills are lightweight, portable and are available in smaller sizes, which allows you to take it along with you to picnics and cookouts. However, keep in mind that they will need electricity – whether you are using existing electrical outlets, portable batteries, or power from your car.
On the other hand, gas grills are heavier, not portable, and mostly available in larger sizes. If you use gas bottles, you can transport your grill, but they are not easy to lift or fit. If your grill is connected to your gas pipeline, it will be almost impossible to move.
Even though electric grills are the most portable, they are the least common for outdoor grilling. This is partly because you need to ensure you have electricity, partly because people prefer the flavor of other grills, and also because people love to show off their BBQ grill mastery.
Cost of Ownership
When it comes to cost, one must consider the cost of purchase and the cost of running a grill. It isn’t wise to neglect the cost of running the grill if you plan to use your grill for the years to come.
Electric grills are the cheapest to purchase. The electric grills that use conduction to heat the food are priced as low as $26. However, they could consume a lot of electricity if they aren’t energy efficient. While purchasing an electric grill, ensure that they don’t use more than 1400 watts of power.
Gas grills are available in a wide price range, but they generally tend to be more expensive than electric grills. If you don’t have a gas connection, getting one installed will be an additional one-time cost. However, gas grills are much more affordable to run once installed, making them ideal for those who want to grill often.
Time to Heat Up
In this era of convenience, the time the grill takes to heat up is critical. The quicker the grill heats up, the lesser time you will have to wait. People would rather have the grill ready for them than wait for it to come up to temperature.
Electric grills heat up almost instantly, making them the best option for cooking something fast. They are easy-to-use and easier to set up. They are small and lightweight enough to be set on your kitchen countertop, and they have fewer parts, which makes cleaning easier.
Gas grills can be switched on just as easily by turning a few knobs, but they take around 15-20 minutes to heat up, depending on how hot or cold it is outside. They tend to be larger, which makes them more difficult to move around and set up. They also typically have more parts than electric grills and are therefore more difficult to clean.
Ease of Cleaning
With electric grills, the cleaning process could not get any simpler. Just wipe your grill clean with a damp towel, and your job is done. You don’t have to worry about ash or grease getting collected at the bottom of your grill.
The grill itself must not be dipped in water. If the grill racks are removable, take them out and clean them.
Gas grills are also very easy to clean. Using BBQ Heat Diffusers will prevent food particles from getting into your burner tubes. Some heat diffusers like lava rocks and ceramic briquettes even prevent grease from accumulating at the bottom of your grill. However, I recommend a deep cleaning of your grill once every 1-3 months, depending on your level of use.
Pros and Cons of Gas and Electric Grills
Now that we have a better understanding of each grill’s basic features, you may have a better idea of your preference. Before you buy the grill you have in mind, it may be worthwhile to go over the benefits and drawbacks of each type of grill.
Benefits of Gas Grills
- Gas grills are easy to use.
- The temperature on gas grills is easy to control.
- You can cook a variety of meats and veggies at different temperatures in a single cook.
- Gas grills can last for many years if properly maintained.
- Gas grills do not take very long to heat up.
- They give the food an excellent smoky flavor.
- They have a better variety of large grills.
Benefits of Electric Grills
- Electric grills are perfect for beginners since they are simple to use.
- There is no smoke involved, which makes it the grill type for grillers.
- Temperature control is effortless on electric grills.
- Electric grills are affordable compared to other grill types.
- You don’t have to worry about finding fuel or refueling with the right kind of fuel.
- Electric grills are easier to clean since it has fewer parts and no ash residue.
- They are small and lightweight, which makes it easy to move/store.
Drawbacks of Gas Grills
- Gas grills take up more space for cooking and storage.
- They need BBQ heat diffusers to reach higher temperatures without burning the food.
- They require more cleaning and maintenance.
- Flare-ups can be a problem if appropriate heat diffusers are not used.
- Storing gas bottles can be dangerous if BBQ Gas Bottle Safety tips are ignored.
Drawbacks of Electric Grills
- Electric grills can’t provide that authentic chargrilled flavor.
- They cannot attain high temperatures.
- Electric grills that use conductive heat struggle to produce a good sear on meat.
- Electric grills are usually too small for larger crowds.
- You can’t simultaneously cook items at different temperatures since it produced uniform heat across the cooking surface.
- Electric grills are not suitable for long cooks
- Radiant heat electric grills can be expensive.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does Food Taste Good On The Electric Grill?
Food cooked on electric grills tastes good, but the flavor isn’t as good as other grill types. To improve the food’s flavor, you could marinate it, preheat the grill, and apply some oil to avoid food sticking to the grill. Also, using a radiant heat electric grill will help you reach higher temperatures.
What Is The Best Electric Grill?
They come in different shapes and sizes, and there are many features to look out for in an electric grill. This article is the best resource to help you buy an electric grill right for your needs.
Can You Use An Electric Grill On A Balcony?
Yes, electric grills can be used on a balcony and anywhere else in your house. Since electric grills are smokeless, they will not trip up any smoke alarms or cause fire damage to any structures. However, just be sure that you are protected from the rain because pooling water could become an electrical hazard.
How Do You Clean Electric Grills?
Cleaning an electric grill is rather simple. You can follow these steps:
- First, make sure that the grill isn’t on or connected to a power supply.
- Wait for it to cool down and then take out the parts of the electric grill
- Wipe them with a damp cloth and wait for it to dry.
- Once they’ve dried, you can store them in any cabinet.
Can An Electric Grill Catch Fire?
Yes, electric grills can catch fire if there is water inside the grill or around the cord. The water can cause a short circuit, which may cause a fire. So keep your electric grills away from water.
Is It Healthy To Cook With An Electric Grill Or Gas Grill?
If you are health conscious, electric grills are a great option. Electric grills do not produce smoke, and you’re also less likely to burn your food using them. They’re also potentially better for the environment since they run on electricity.
Can An Electric Grill Be Used Outside?
Yes, electric grills that can be used outside (outdoor electric grills) have a bigger grilling area, well-protected electricals, and an optional grill stand. Here are my recommendations for the best outdoor electric grills.
What Is The Point Of An Electric Grill?
Electric grills enable indoor grilling when you have bad weather or other restrictions that prevent you from going outside. Using charcoal or gas grills indoors may not comply with local fire safety regulations, but using an electric grill is never prohibited indoors.
I hope that this article helps you choose the grill that is the right choice for you. In the end, go for the grill that fits your needs.
Gas Grills are the better option for you if:
- The smoky flavor is more important than Ultimate Convenience.
- You prefer to cook outdoors.
- You typically cook for more people.
- You don’t mind if it takes a little longer to grill.
- You’re willing to make an investment.
Electric Grills are the better option for you if:
- Ultimate convenience is more important than the smoky flavor.
- You prefer grilling indoors.
- You typically cook for smaller crowds.
- You want cooking to be quick.
- You want to grill on a budget.
If you found the information useful, you may also want to check out the articles that compare Charcoal Vs. Electric grills and Charcoal Vs. Gas Grills.
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