A tailgate grill is a must when it comes to hanging out at any party. Not only is it a means for cooking delicious meats of all sizes and flavors but it’s also the center piece of command. Think about it, when’s the last time you were at the helm of a tailgate grill and didn’t feel like The Man. Everyone’s relying on you for some great tasting burgers, brats or dogs and you’re in control of the culinary destiny.
So you definitely want to get the best tailgate grill you can afford but you don’t want to overspend on ridiculous features that you don’t need, nor do you need the hassle of the monster tailgate units that have the grills built into a trailer. Sure they’re bad-ass but they’re also a pain in the ass to hook up, find a place to park, etc. Below we’ll cover some of the basics to help you pick out the best tailgate grill.
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What are the Best Grills for Tailgating?
There are many different features available on tailgate grills: you can get the anywhere from small to large, propane or charcoal, folding, vehicle mounted (which is S-W-E-E-T), etc. Not to mention there are a ton of other factors too, like what you’re cooking (hot dogs vs. whole chickens), how many people your cooking for, what temperature you need to get up to, how much space you have, if you’re in a parking lot or some dude’s back lawn. But to break it down to the best of the best, the top features of the best tailgating grills are:
Portability – You’ve gotta haul this thing around like it or not. Most tailgate grills now days are super compactable and come with wheels and handles and fold up. If you’re going charcoal you’re going to want something that isn’t going to fall apart like the old school Weber charcoal grills. Last thing you want to do after a long day of partying is clean up charcoal brickets out of the back of your car.
Fuel type – Are you hell bent on going charcoal or do you like the control and convenience of propane. Modern tailgate grills can do either one equally well so you pretty much have whatever choice you want.
Size of the grill – Are you just grillin for you and a couple of your friends or do you have a whole gang to feed? Are they ridiculously hungry? Some tailgate grills that are just meant to cook a few things are small and compact. A good example would be the Coleman Roadtrip Party Grill which sits only about a foot off the ground and can hold about four burgers or dogs at a time. It’s a simple, portable grill and that’s about it. Meanwhile, you have something like the Coleman 9941-768 Road Trip Grill , which has two 20,000 Btu burners enough to cook out in even the snowiest weather, fully collapsible stand that expands to put the grill at normal standing height (you don’t have to bend over just to grill), and packs up easily and can be wheeled away. It all depends on how much of a party you’ve got on your hands.
Hitch Mounting – While it’s nice that all the portable grills can pack up and fit in your car, the question is what happens if you don’t have any more room in the back of your SUV or truck or car? The answer comes with the hitch mounted system such as the Margaritaville G1000 Ride-Behind Tailgating Propane Grill. This is a full size grill that is attached to a hitch which can swivel and lock up against the vehicle when driving and then swing out to the side for cooking and you can even use the tailgate on your truck or SUV for counter space. This really takes your tailgate grill up a notch; you’ve got to check it out.