If you’re looking for a versatile mid-range BBQ priced under $1000, you’ve come to the right place.
If this is your first time buying a BBQ, we understand that it can be quite confusing especially with many brands advertising all sorts of features in an attempt to differentiate themselves.
In this guide, we’ll review two of our best mid-range BBQs and explain what you should look out for when buying a BBQ for grand or less here in Australia.
The 2 best BBQ under $1000 Australia reviewed
Z Grills 7002B
The Z Grills 7002B is a stripped-down version of the best selling Z Grills 700E-XL. It is designed for people working with a mid-range budget but looking for something with a larger grilling area.
With 0.45 m² (700 sq inch) of grilling area, you can easily cook up a storm for 20 or more.
As the Z Grills 7002B is a pellet grill, you can not only grill your Aussie favourites such as snags and steaks but also smoke low and slow to impart a subtle smoky flavour into ribs and briskets.
Furthermore, it features all-terrain wheels which will allow you to easily move it around depending on where you plan to cook. The unit also comes with a waterproof BBQ cover which will keep your unit looking new.
It’s the perfect grill for anyone looking for a mid-range BBQ under $1,000 or anyone new to pellet smoking.
Z Grills 450A
The 450A pellet grill is roughly 35% smaller compared to the 7002B. The compact unit still comfortably fits a full-size brisket or a couple of large racks of ribs.
Both the 7002B and 450A can be used a BBQ grill as well as an outdoor oven. With a temperature range of 70°C to 230°C, it’s perfect for low and slow cooking as well as quick searing.
There’s even a smoke setting on both models which will maximise the amount of wood-fired smoke infused into your food.
What to consider when buying mid-range BBQ
Work out your budget
The prices of BBQs can vary quite a bit here in Australia. It might be tempting to buy a cheap BBQ and call it a day. The issue is, they will most likely suck.
Buying a BBQ is a bit of an investment. Think of it this way, it’s not like you are going to get a new BBQ every single year. In fact, it will most likely stick with you for a while.
You really want to get yourself something that you will not just enjoy cooking on but something that you can be proud of owning.
Decide what type of BBQ to buy
Pellet Smoker (Pellet Grill)
The 2 BBQs that we mentioned above are known as pellet smokers or pellet grills. These two names can be used interchangeably and essentially refers to a pellet-fuelled BBQ.
As the name suggests, pellet smokers are BBQs that can also be used to smoke your food low and slow. It is amazingly versatile and can easily be used in place of an oven for most recipes to give your food a wood-fired flavour.
The cheapest pellet smoker is quite a bit more expensive compared to a Gas BBQ and Charcoal BBQ. With that said, the price range of pellet smokers is not as big compared to the other types of BBQs.
You may want a pellet smoker if:
- You want an all-rounder BBQ that is versatile.
- You enjoy a subtle hint of woof-fired smoke flavour in your food
- You want a BBQ that easy enough to use that you can use it daily.
Gas BBQs are the most common type of BBQ you’ll see in a typical Aussie household. Unfortunately, the status quo isn’t necessarily always the best choice.
Most Gas BBQs are great for searing but it lacks a wood-burning fire. This means cooking food on a gas BBQ is no different from cooking on a hot-plate because it is essentially what it is, a gas-fired hot-plate.
You may want a gas BBQ if:
- Speed is more important to you than flavour.
- Smoking meat is not really your thing.
The most popular type of charcoal grills is the kettle-style charcoal grill. It’s often affordable, easy to set up and very simple units in general.
It has a series of air vents that is used to regular the airflow, thus, controlling the temperature of the BBQ.
The most common complaints we hear is that it can be quite tricky to get it to a consistent temperature. Clean up can also be quite a big chore especially if you have to scrub-off grease-soaked ash from the grill.
Despite these shortcomings, we can see why so many people are still die-hard charcoal/briquette fans. There is something about playing with fire and cooking food directly above it that draw out our inner caveman.
You may want a charcoal BBQ if:
- You like playing with fire.
- You are on a tight budget and want the cheapest grill available.
- You don’t mind spending a bit more money later to upgrade.
How many people do you usually cook for?
What’s worsts, having hungry guests waiting for steaks to be done or simply not having enough space on your grill to feed everyone?
If you get too small of a gas BBQ, this could very well happen to you. The beauty of a pellet smoker is that you can put on a few racks of ribs or a brisket before anyone else arrives.
As it is super versatile, you can use it to sear snags and steaks as you would on a typical BBQ too.
What type of food do you usually cook on a BBQ?
The typical Aussie BBQ usually consists of thin cuts of meats. eg. steaks, cutlets, fish, prawn and snags.
In most cases, any flat top gas BBQ will do the job. However, if you think you want to give smoking meat a go, then a gas BBQ just won’t cut it.
You’ll want to get yourself either a pellet smoker or a charcoal grill if you do plan on cooking ribs, briskets and pulled pork.
Warranty and Customer Service
It’s easy to get caught up comparing the warranty period between two brands. However, people often overlook the importance of buying from a company that stands behind their product.
The best thing you can do before committing to buying a BBQ is to do a quick Google Search, eg. “Z Grills Review” to see what other customers are saying about the company and the grill.
You can almost always expect a more personal customer service when you buy from a family-owned BBQ speciality shop in comparison to a big box retailer.
We hope this guide was able to help you understand the pros and cons of each type of BBQs, and taught you what to look out for when buying a BBQ for under $1,000 in Australia.