If you’re like many Americans, some of your fondest memories come from hot summer days and warm evenings eating hot dogs and burgers straight off the grill.
Creating these summer memories in your backyard with family and friends doesn’t have to break the bank. You can find a high-quality grill for a great price and start making delectable meals your loved ones will rave about for years to come.
No matter what you prefer, whether it’s charcoal, gas, Kamado-style, liquid propane, or wood pellets, there is an affordable grill for you. The best grills under $400 offer an excellent combination of useful features and value for your hard-earned money.
The Weber Original Kettle Premium 26” Charcoal Grill is the most recognizable outdoor cooker on the market. The large, black kettle shape conjures up great memories of delicious burgers, marinated chicken breasts, and juicy steaks cooked over briquettes or lump charcoal fuel.
It’s easy to monitor the grill’s interior temperature using the analog thermometer on the top of the grill and control it with the damper on the lid. The grill’s handle offers hooks to hang your tools or hang your lid there while inspecting the strength of your flame. The Weber Original Kettle Premium 26-Inch Charcoal Grill is one of the easiest grills to use.
Best Grills Under $400 of 2021 Reviews
Weber Original Kettle Premium 26-Inch Charcoal Grill
The Weber Original Kettle Premium 26” Charcoal Grill is the perfect go-to grill for seasoned pros and new grillers alike. Anyone can easily recognize this grill at a patio, porch, or pool party.
The heavy-gauge stainless steel material used in manufacturing is coated with porcelain enamel. That coating helps to protect it from discoloration, corrosion and helps with durability. You control the grill’s interior temperature using the damper on top of the lid, which can be a little daunting to learn but manageable once you get the hang of it. Use the convenient Tuck-Away lid holder when you need to flip your steaks and burgers or whenever you store the grill.
- Reliable stainless steel construction is durable and strong
- Builds and retains heat to cook food evenly
- Available in smaller 22” charcoal grill model
- Resists corrosion with an enamel coating on lid, bowl
- Weighs 62 lbs.
- No digital readouts available
- Ash clean up can be a pain
Kamado Joe Joe Jr Ceramic Grill On Stand
Kamado grills are similar to kettle-style charcoal grills that most people recognize, but they use ceramic in manufacturing instead of steel. Fuel options vary from charcoal to wood chips, and they’re great for smoking. Once pitmasters get their hands on a Kamado grill, they never go back to their old charcoal grill again. There’s usually just one problem; The price point.
Fortunately, this Kamado Joe Jr solves that problem. It’s constructed from durable 1 1/4” thick ceramic to keep heat inside it. The 149 in2 of grill space is ready to cook in only 15 minutes on a 304 stainless steel cooking grate that features a hinge. The hinge allows grillers to lift the grate to add more charcoal or wood to their fire easily.
- The nesting stand stabilizes the grill while cooking
- Superior design supports flavorful, tender proteins
- All ceramic parts carry a lifetime warranty
- Ash cleanup is a cinch
- Stainless steel-hinged grate lets you add charcoal
- Steep learning curve of a Kamado-style grill
Char-Broil 4-Burner Cart Style Liquid Propane Gas Grill
The Char-Broil 4-Burner Cart Style Liquid Propane Gas Grill is a durable grill built and finished with dazzling stainless steel. It sparkles in the sun while evenly cooking your food with 36,000 BTUs of power across 425 in2 of cooking surface. The cart provides ample storage space for your propane tank, keeping your setup compact and tidy–looking.
It offers a 10,000 BTU side burner that’s perfect for boiling water for pasta or soup, or use it just to keep food warm while you continue to cook over the main grilling surface. You can depend on the electric ignition to light your grill reliably. Cleanup is easy with the enamel-coated grease tray, and the porcelain-coated cooking grates are rust-resistant and easy to clean.
- All-terrain wheels make moving cart easy
- Stainless steel construction is durable, looks great
- Ignites with just the push of a button
- Gas grills don’t provide the smoky flavor of charcoal
Royal Gourmet GD401 Portable Propane Gas Grill
Royal Gourmet is a well-known brand that provides quality grills for reduced prices, and this Portable Propane Gas Grill is no exception to that rule. This grill is a die-hard tailgater’s dream grill with two surfaces to cook on. Start the day early by whipping up breakfast on the griddle and then switching to the grill and sear your burgers and chicken to perfection.
Ignite your grill with just the push of a button and let the 4 x 12,000 BTU burners go to work cooking up your favorite recipes for your friends and family while they enjoy the weather and games before kick-off. The grill comes with two side shelves that are perfect for helping you prepare your grilled masterpieces. The grill comes complete with fold-down legs and locking casters for easy storage and mobility.
- Stainless steel panel features knobs for easy control
- Push-button startup is easy and fast ignition
- Nearly 600 in2 of total cooking surface
- Heavy gas grill takes 2 to pack up
- Improper use results in warping
Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett WiFi Controlled Portable Wood Pellet Grill
Grilling on a pellet grill is a whole new experience for those used to grilling and smoking over charcoal, wood, or gas. These grills are perfect for those who want to reclaim their summers by setting temperatures, putting their meats and veggies on the grates, and letting the grill do the rest.
Connect this Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett WiFi Controlled Portable Wood Pellet Grill to your home WiFi network or your phone’s hotspot if you’re tailgating, and let it do all the work for you. At the same time, you can enjoy your pool with family and friends or adult beverages before the big game starts.
The grill monitors and adjusts temperatures automatically with its digital temperature probe. Once you download your GMG app, you’ll have access to food profiles, temperature calibrations, and you can set timers right from your phone or tablet.
- Works on-the-go with a 12V car battery
- Hopper has a full capacity of 9 lbs.
- Smoke, sear with temperatures from 150°F to 550°F
- Smoking may require multiple hopper refills
Weber Q 2400 Portable Electric Grill
Electric grills might not always be the first type of grill that comes to mind when you think about cooking outdoors, but they have a special place in veteran pitmasters’ hearts. These great grills are an alternative to wood-burning and charcoal counterparts for individuals who prefer a more environmentally conscious approach to grilling. This Weber grill is excellent for portable and tabletop cooking. It’s lightweight and sturdy, with nylon and fiberglass handles that feel comfortable in your hands when you carry it.
This grill features aluminum liners that trap heat on the grilling surface to thoroughly and evenly cook your food. It has a 6’ cord, so if you’re tailgating, you can plug it into a generator from the back of your truck bed. Grease management is essential, so Weber included a removable catch pan for easy cleaning.
- Grease and drippings fall away for healthier eating
- 280 in2 of cooking space fits a lot of food
- Enameled cooking grates make clean up easy
- Electricity isn’t always available at tailgates
Portable Kitchen Cast Aluminum Charcoal Grill & Smoker
Cooking with charcoal can be tricky to master, but the Portable Kitchen Cast Aluminum Charcoal Grill & Smoker makes it easy to learn with four different venting points to control airflow through the grill. The cast aluminum construction is durable, rust-proof, and transfers heat well, so cooking up your favorite burger recipes is easy, even when you need to sear over high temperatures.
This grill’s design is unique because it lifts out of the cart for easy portability without ever picking up a screwdriver. It cooks using charcoal, but the capsule design provides convection-style cooking, allowing hot air to quickly move throughout the cooking box. The hinged cooking grid enables outdoor chefs to add charcoal to the grill without disturbing the food on top of the grates—the detachable hood guarantees easy cleaning.
- All-terrain wheels make it easy to move
- Lightweight, weighing only 50 lbs.
- Plated steel cooking grate material
- Hood is not spring-assisted
Americana by Meco Electric Grill
Cooking up delicious food has never been so easy as it is on an electric grill like this one from Americana by Meco. It’s a great grill that supports a healthy lifestyle by cooking up food while letting grease and fat drip away. Add wood chips to the burner under your porcelain-coated cooking grids to infuse your favorite wood flavors into your grills, shrimp, and veggies.
What sets this electric grill apart from others on the market is the versatility. It includes a rotisserie kit, which can be hard to find with other models. The electric burner has three cooking positions: flat for even cooking, tilted to create high heat cooking zones, and vertical for rotisserie cooking. You can set your chicken, pork, or lamb to cook and monitor it through the viewing window without losing heat over your cooking surface. The accessories alone make this grill worth checking out.
- Freestanding grill provides shelving for prep and storage
- Painted steel exterior is attractive and durable
- 202 in2 of cooking space for intimate gatherings
- Does not offer WiFi connectivity
Maverick Char B Que Electric Grill
This electric grill by Maverick is a terrific addition to your outdoor kitchen. It can be purchased as a freestanding unit or buy it even cheaper as a built-in unit. You can save more money by purchasing it without the stainless steel hood. Even with both options added, it’s a steal with a price point under $400. All you need to get cooking is a standard 120-volt grounded outlet and your culinary ingenuity.
You don’t have to worry about burning your hands or fingers on the exterior surfaces because the temperature control knobs are cool to the touch, offering ease of use. The glass cooking surface is unique, resistant to scratching, and easy to clean. It comes with a stainless steel contoured scraper to help you remove burned-on bits, and the drip tray is removable for further easy cleaning.
- Durable 304 stainless steel is excellent at retaining heat
- Infrared grill comes to a max temperature of 482°F
- More energy efficient than 1,500-watt grills
- Electricity is not for all-weather use
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There are many great grills available at affordable price points, but if you’re looking for a reliable grill with durable construction with a trustworthy brand name, a Weber grill is your go-to choice.
The Weber Original Kettle Premium 26-Inch Charcoal Grill offers a terrific price point, and it’s easy to learn how to use. You have plenty of temperature control and room to cook up great meals for your guests with this classic Weber charcoal grill.