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best pellet grill under 500

The Best Pellet Grills Under 500$ – Review Of 2021

Best Pellet Grills Under $500 Review For 2021

Best For Beginners
Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker Pellet Grill and Smoker, 45" x 49" x 39.4", Black
Best Overall
Traeger Pellet Grills TFB30KLF Tailgater 20 Grill, Black
Runner-Up
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker, 8 in 1 BBQ Grill Auto Temperature Controls, inch Cooking Area, 700 sq, Silver

Cuisinart CPG-4000

Traeger Tailgater 20

Z Grills ZPG-7002ENC

Beginners looking to ace their grilling and smoking skills will find the Cuisinart CPG-400 a great choice. While the brand might not be your first thought when it comes to pellet smokers, they carry a solid reputation for creating quality cooking appliances.
With a digital arc controller, meat probe, EZ-fold legs, porcelain-coated grill grates, and other amazing features, the Traeger Tailgater wood pellet grill has all you need. You can enjoy its 6-in-1 versatility in your balcony, backyard, camping trips, and any other place.
Z Grills are popular pellet grill giants. Therefore, it isn’t a surprise that this model is a strong contender for the best models under 500. With a huge grilling area and hopper capacity, it is a good choice for large families.
Best For Beginners
Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker Pellet Grill and Smoker, 45" x 49" x 39.4", Black

Cuisinart CPG-4000

Beginners looking to ace their grilling and smoking skills will find the Cuisinart CPG-400 a great choice. While the brand might not be your first thought when it comes to pellet smokers, they carry a solid reputation for creating quality cooking appliances.
Best Overall
Traeger Pellet Grills TFB30KLF Tailgater 20 Grill, Black

Traeger Tailgater 20

With a digital arc controller, meat probe, EZ-fold legs, porcelain-coated grill grates, and other amazing features, the Traeger Tailgater wood pellet grill has all you need. You can enjoy its 6-in-1 versatility in your balcony, backyard, camping trips, and any other place.
Runner-Up
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker, 8 in 1 BBQ Grill Auto Temperature Controls, inch Cooking Area, 700 sq, Silver

Z Grills ZPG-7002ENC

Z Grills are popular pellet grill giants. Therefore, it isn’t a surprise that this model is a strong contender for the best models under 500. With a huge grilling area and hopper capacity, it is a good choice for large families.
Best Overll
Traeger Pellet Grills TFB30KLF Tailgater 20 Grill, Black
Runner Up
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker, 8 in 1 BBQ Grill Auto Temperature Controls, inch Cooking Area, 700 sq, Silver
Budget-Friendly
Masterbuilt SH19260119 WG400B, 20” Pellet Grill
Great For Beginners
Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker Pellet Grill and Smoker, 45" x 49" x 39.4", Black
Great Modern Features
Green Mountain Davy Crockett Sense Mate Electric Wi-Fi Control Foldable Portable Wood Pellet Tailgating Grill with Meat Probe, Black
Traeger Grills Tailgater
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002ENC
Masterbuilt Smoke Hollow
Cuisinart CPG-4000
Green Mountain Davy Crockett
With a digital arc controller, meat probe, EZ-fold legs, porcelain-coated grill grates, and other amazing features, the Traeger Tailgater wood pellet grill has all you need. You can enjoy its 6-in-1 versatility in your balcony, backyard, camping trips, and any other place.
Z Grills are popular pellet grill giants. Therefore, it isn’t a surprise that this model is a strong contender for the best models under 500. With a huge grilling area and hopper capacity, it is a good choice for large families.
There is a lot to awe about this Masterbuilt unit. It gives authentic smoked delicacies, probably the truest BBQ taste to yearn for. With large pellet space, you can cook for long hours without necessarily refilling. You will also like the easy pellet hopper cleanout and other outstanding features of the unit.
Beginners looking to ace their grilling and smoking skills will find the Cuisinart CPG-400 a great choice. While the brand might not be your first thought when it comes to pellet smokers, they carry a solid reputation for creating quality cooking appliances.
The Green Mountain unit is a true tailgater with a small capacity but great capabilities. The unit is primarily designed for tailgating and camping, but can handle all other smoking situations.
Best Overll
Traeger Pellet Grills TFB30KLF Tailgater 20 Grill, Black
Traeger Grills Tailgater
With a digital arc controller, meat probe, EZ-fold legs, porcelain-coated grill grates, and other amazing features, the Traeger Tailgater wood pellet grill has all you need. You can enjoy its 6-in-1 versatility in your balcony, backyard, camping trips, and any other place.
Runner Up
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker, 8 in 1 BBQ Grill Auto Temperature Controls, inch Cooking Area, 700 sq, Silver
Z GRILLS ZPG-7002ENC
Z Grills are popular pellet grill giants. Therefore, it isn’t a surprise that this model is a strong contender for the best models under 500. With a huge grilling area and hopper capacity, it is a good choice for large families.
Budget-Friendly
Masterbuilt SH19260119 WG400B, 20” Pellet Grill
Masterbuilt Smoke Hollow
There is a lot to awe about this Masterbuilt unit. It gives authentic smoked delicacies, probably the truest BBQ taste to yearn for. With large pellet space, you can cook for long hours without necessarily refilling. You will also like the easy pellet hopper cleanout and other outstanding features of the unit.
Great For Beginners
Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker Pellet Grill and Smoker, 45" x 49" x 39.4", Black
Cuisinart CPG-4000
Beginners looking to ace their grilling and smoking skills will find the Cuisinart CPG-400 a great choice. While the brand might not be your first thought when it comes to pellet smokers, they carry a solid reputation for creating quality cooking appliances.
Great Modern Features
Green Mountain Davy Crockett Sense Mate Electric Wi-Fi Control Foldable Portable Wood Pellet Tailgating Grill with Meat Probe, Black
Green Mountain Davy Crockett
The Green Mountain unit is a true tailgater with a small capacity but great capabilities. The unit is primarily designed for tailgating and camping, but can handle all other smoking situations.

Features:

  • Built-in meat probe
  • Digital arc controller
  • Keep Warm mode
  • EZ-fold legs
  • Porcelain-coated grates

Overview:

Traeger Tailgater 20 is a lightweight pellet smoker grill that weighs approximately 60 lbs. It has dimensions of 37 x 18 x 36 inches, which makes it easy to store or transfer to another location.

With this wood pellet grill’s digital thermostat, it can help you gauge cooking temperatures without a hitch. Thus, you have control over your griller at all times. Nevertheless, it should be noted that this Traeger grill is prone to temperature fluctuations, especially during cold weather.

Constructed out of heavy-duty stainless steel, the Traeger TFB29LZA is designed to withstand both internal and external elements. 

Pros:

  • Versatile barbeque cooker
  • Requires no charcoal or gas
  • Extremely portable design
  • Two different power sources
  • High maximum temperature (450°)
  • Sizeable cooking space (300 sq. in.)
  • Ideal for getting wood flavor
  • Foldable legs
  • Ideal for camping or tailgating
  • Durable structure

Cons:

  • Small hopper capacity (8 lbs.)
  • Sits a bit low

Features:

  • Fan forced convection cooking
  • The automated electric feed system
  • Large Grilling Area
  • Digital temperature control
  • Advanced wood fire technology
  • Material: stainless steel

Overview:

First on our list is the Z Grills ZPG-7002ENC. Z grills pellet smoker has a large cooking area of 19.5in x 26 in.

It has a second cooking area with a removable warming rack of ribs that’s 7.5 x 26 inches. This is enough cooking surface area for you and your family to have a barbeque party over the weekend. Read more about Z-Grills here.

You don’t have to use blowers or fans to stabilize the griller’s heat. The Z grills has an adjustable temperature regulator that ranges from 180ºF-450ºF. It has an internal sensor that helps you with temperature control inside the griller.

Pros:

  • Corrosion-resistant body
  • Wood-fired grill
  • Versatile grilling
  • Easy to use
  • Consistent and precise
  • Large capacity
  • Stainless steel build
  • Foldable working shelf
  • Heavy-duty wheels
  • Rust-proof racks and covers

Cons:

  • No accessory grill on the shelf
  • No ash cleaning

Additionally, pellet grill smoker has an electronic feed system that monitors the entry of wood pellets with a limit of 20 lbs as needed. Z grills grilling system ensures quality and less supervision of the grilled meat. This helps maximize the bonding between your family and friends.

Features:

  • Easy to use and clean out pellets
  • Digital readout
  • Warming rack of ribs and porcelain coated grate
  • 390-Inches² of cooking area
  • Holds 11.5lbs of wood pellets without reloading

Overview:

First off, the Smoke Hollow SH19260119 WG400B is known for its expansive cooking area.

It’s approximately 390 square inches, giving you enough space to cook your favorite meats and vegetables at once. For large BBQ parties, you should give this pellet grill a look.

The Smoke Hollow SH19260119 lets the user cook for hours without needing to reload, The auger system regulates the wood pellet hopper feed rate for consistent digital control.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Evenly distributes heat
  • Good build construction
  • Porcelain coated
  • Easy cleanout
  • Large pellet holder
  • Digital temperature control
  • Large cooking space
  • Family-friendly
  • Great food quality

Cons:

  • No advanced features
  • Average LED display

And we also like the wood pellet grill’s build construction. The pellet grill consists of porcelain coated grate and warming racks of ribs. This helps with making your cooking process easier, as it allows for your food to be evenly heated throughout.

Features:

  • 450 square inches cooking area
  • Weather-resistant smoker grill cover
  • 15-pound hopper capacity
  • All-terrain wheels
  • Grease bucket holder

Overview:

With this model, you don’t have to think about flare-ups because the smoke will manage the fuel that it needs. Pop the pellets inside the device, and you’re good to go. If you use a low temperature, you can create more blue smoke while allowing your pellets to smolder.

With the Cuisinart CPG-4000, you can have peace of mind knowing that your food is cooked at the right temperature. The thermostat has an LED display that works by maintaining the heat itself. You can cook foods on fast, hot, low, or slow settings. It can add pellets to fire if it’s requested.

No longer do you have to pack everything together. This smoker has a 450 square inches cooking area, which gives you room to space out and not worry. It has enough internal cooking space in the main cooking chamber to hold a flat brisket, pork shoulders, and two chickens.

Pros:

  • Easy installation
  • Electric ignition and easy display
  • Cooks food evenly
  • Lift handles for better handling
  • Water and wind-resistant fabric
  • Free included cover
  • Large cooking area
  • Super-versatile unit
  • Folding front table
  • Highly portable wheels

Cons:

  • Low-quality door latch
  • Short warranty period

The Cuisinart CPG-4000 has a sleek design that features 2 terrain wheels. This makes it easy to move the pellet smoker where you want, and it has a stable handle that allows you to carry it around and then store it once it’s not needed.

5.Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett WiFi Controlled Portable Wood Pellet Grill

Features:

  • 12V or 11V adapters
  • 3 different power options
  • Sense-Mate
  • Folded legs that double as handles
  • Weighs 60 lbs

Overview:

Here is another addition to our list. The Grills Davy Crockett pellet peaked lid that’s combined with a fan to provide superior convection (airflow) and has more space for food.

Green Mountain pellet grill improves your cooking based on the law on not overcrowding your food.

The Green Mountain Davy Crockett has a 12″ x 18″, which is smaller than the largest stationary grill in the market and is large for a portable pellet grill. This is enough room for a 10-12lb, a small turkey, or a few chickens.

Pros:

  • Large area of Green Mountain Davy Crockett wood pellet grill
  • Portable folded legs
  • Digital temperature control
  • Simple assembly
  • Affordable unit
  • WI-FI capability
  • Side tray with hooks
  • Very portable
  • 3-year warranty
  • Sturdy design

Cons:

  • The legs can tip unexpectedly
  • Limited WI-FI technology

If you plan on using the Grills Davy Crockett pellet grill as a portable grill, then its weight factors its ease of use. This Green Mountain grill weighs in at 60lbs, making it lighter than other grills.

You can fold the Green Mountain Davy Crockett grill legs into handles, making it easier for carrying, and it can be placed on a flat cooking surface, like a tailgate.

Features:

  • Simple Temperature Select System
  • Patented Ash Clean Out
  • 2,100 Cubic Inches Grilling Volume
  • Dual Meat Probe
  • Automatic Auger

Overview:

Let’s talk about the most obvious thing, its size. The Camp Chef Pursuit 20 has a lot of grilling real estate when compared to Camp Chef Smokepro. Not only does it have a large grill cooking surface, but it also includes a split second warming rack that increases the available grilling space.

When it comes to grilling, the Camp Chef Pursuit 20 does well. The Camp Chef wood pellet grill provides a nice smoky flavor. Despite being portable and compact, Camp Chef has enough room to smoke at least four racks of spare ribs.

Pros:

  • Slide and grill smoker technology
  • LED display thermometers for improved temperature control and monitoring
  • Easy to clean ash cleanout system
  • Heavy duty
  • Very portable
  • Folding design
  • Ash cleanout system
  • Easy to use menu dial
  • Dual shelf convection cooking
  • Slide and grill technology

Cons:

  • A bit heavy
  • Legs are unstable

Make sure to rotate your Camp Chef racks from top to bottom in the smoking session to make sure they have the same level of smoke and heat exposure.

Features:

  • Versatile Barbecue Cooking
  • 300 square inches grilling area
  • Digital Elite controller
  • Electronic Auto Start ignition
  • Grilled to Perfection every time

Overview:

Compact and well built, the Traeger Wood Pellet Grill BBQ155 is one of the top-rated pellet grills on our list.

The wood pellet grill has about 300 square inches of large cooking space. And its large enough to place a small turkey inside of it, so it has enough space for 6-8 people.

With its auto start, foolproof digital control, and a front-mounted thermometer, even a beginner can walk to the grill, play around with the controls, and start cooking.

Wondering how Pit Boss and Traeger compare against each other? Check out 
Pit Boss vs Traeger here.w

Pros:

  • Digital temperature control for simple usage
  • Electronic auto start
  • Automatic wood pellet feature.
  • Bronze lid finish
  • Advanced digital control
  • Very portable
  • Easy assembly and usage
  • Cooks perfectly
  • Durable build
  • Good for the price

Cons:

  • Slow to cook up meats
  • Small sized

We also like BBQ155 because of its carrying capacity. The hopper capacity can hold up to 10 lbs of pellets, and it uses 2lbs an hour. So it can last for about 5 hours, which means you can set it going without having to worry about it one day later.

8. Pit Boss 700FB Pellet Grill

Features

  • Porcelain-coated cast iron grid
  • 700 sq.in cooking area
  • All natural wood
  • Digitally controlled system

The Pit Boss 700FB Pellet Grill is an overly flexible and easy to clean pellet grill you should also try out. From the grill, you can perform various cooking, making it versatile for smoking, grilling, braising, roasting, baking, searing, and barbecue.

With the shiny build and dual indicators, the Pit Boss 700FB Pellet Grill features digital control mechanisms that keeps you entertained while cooking. It delivers great steaks, seafood, chicken, tacos, and brisket tastes and textures.

 

Pros:

  • Excellent versatility
  • Added smoke flavor
  • Simple to operate
  • Easy cleaning
  • Durable quality build
  • Easy to ignite
  • Large cooking surface
  • Large temperature range
  • LED display
  • Fueled by 100% natural wood pellets

Cons:

  • Hard to adjust the broiler
  • Inaccurate temperature control

We also like BBQ155 because of its carrying capacity. The hopper capacity can hold up to 10 lbs of pellets, and it uses 2lbs an hour. So it can last for about 5 hours, which means you can set it going without having to worry about it one day later.

Buying Guide

Still confused about the best pellet grills and smokers?

Continue reading this buying guide!

Temperature Range

Knowing the temperature range  is important for the final result of your food. What you’ll need will depend on what cooking techniques you plan on using. High-end pellet grills can reach to 180°F – 425°F which is enough for smoking, grilling, baking, and roasting.

However, if you want to sear meat, you’ll want a pellet grill that can reach 500°F – 550°F heating levels. A good thermometer is necessary. You’ll need an accurate and precise reading so you know that you’re cooking meat at the right temperature control.

Cooking Size, Area, Portability

The best Pellet grills under $500 can range from portable grills for tailgating to large grills for commercial usage.

If you’re someone that wants to take your pellet grill on the go, be it partying, camping or any event, you’ll want one with wheels and easy to lift.

If you have a lot of tailgating parties or you cook often at home, then you’ll want a larger pellet grill. Decide your needs before buying a pellet grill to ensure you buy one that properly sized.

When it comes to cooking, consistency is the key if you want better results. For instance, if you’re cooking brisket, the cooking temperature control needs to be around 250°F throughout its 12 hour cooking period.

3 Position Controller

The controller board is necessary for precision. The three types of position controllers are 3-position, non-PID one-touch, and PID multi-position. Check out the types of controllers and pick the one that works best for you.

Hopper Size

Your pellet cooker’s hopper container stores pellets ready for the device’s automatic auger to bring them to the firepot. Basically, the hopper capacity will determine how long the cooks will be.

So, buying a pellet grill with a smaller hopper capacity will be annoying because it will fail to go the distance while cooking.

Additional Accessories

Despite being more complicated than standard grilling equipment, these grills are easier to repair once you have the right parts.

It doesn’t matter if you need to replace the fan or the automatic auger; for most brands, you can find replacement parts easily. Here are the most common pellet grill smoker accessories that can be easily replaced.

  • Auger Motors: Your pellet smoker needs this to run properly. If you need to get them replaced, then you can buy them online or your local hardware store for $30-$40.
  • Fan Motors: Fan and motors come pre-bundled if your pellet grill isn’t working properly. You can easily replace these parts, and with the internet available, it won’t be difficult to find a video tutorial after buying one.
  • PID controllers: PID controllers are replaceable, but you have to buy them separately. Sadly, there is no one size fit all PID controller for pellet grills. 
  • Meat Probes: You’ll want to know the temperature of the meat you’re cooking. For pellet grills without meat probes, or if your current one is broken, then you can purchase meat probe to help you.
  • Pellet Hopper: Some pellet grill smokers come with a hopper capacity extender, which allows you to hold a larger amount of wood pellets. This is useful as it increases your slow cooking time without needing supervision.
  • Chimney, Body Parts, Hinges: Loose body parts like chimneys, screws, and hinges for pellet smokers are widely available online. Whether it’s a broken axle or the casters of your wheels, you won’t find many issues with replacing it.
  • Direct Grill Gates: These protect the grill and pellet smoker from dust, moisture, and weather in general.

Should I Upgrade My Current Pellet Grill?

For best results, we suggest you get a pellet grill smoker that’s well-made and has a longer warranty. The key to keeping your grill for longer than five years is to maintain it properly. This means you should clean it thoroughly replace the components regularly, so it doesn’t wear out the full system.

Will Upgrading My Grill Fix My Problem?

Fixing your pellet smoker can be as simple as replacing a faulty part. Usually, you’ll spend $50 or less instead of shelling out hundreds of dollars for a new smoker. If issues still arise with the grill’s digital control operations, then you should hire a professional to help you.

When Should I Look For a New Wood Pellet Smoker?

The answer to this question will depend on the type of malfunction your grill or smoker is expecting. If the problem is fixable, then try repairing it before chucking out money and buying a new one.

Sometimes, you can easily replace the digital temperature control levels or changing the hopper capacity to maintain the smoke levels fully.

Are Pellet Grills Worth the Money?

Well, yes, we don’t see any reason why shouldn’t be investing in a pellet grill smoker. That said, a pellet grill is versatile and will allow you to barbecue, bake, and grill while also letting you explore other cooking methods. What’s more, they are pretty easy to use and inexpensive to own. 

Conclusion

To conclude, we believe that you can get the the right wood pellet grill with the help of this list. Although we did not include products from good companies like Pit Boss 700fb and Camp Chef Smokepro Dlx, If you want something that’s easy to use, try using the Camp Chef Pursuit 20.

But, for those wanting something more advanced, try the Green Mountain Davy Crockett or check reviews about Summerset grills . Whatever pellet smoker you choose, you’ll have a reliable pellet grill that will be the life of your next BBQ party.

 

Noam

This article is written by Noam Shahar the founder of Limited-Red, Noam is a serious carnivore, And he has a strong passion when it comes to meat and cook, He Decided to review the "BBQ world" 9 years ago after discovering how many people struggle with choosing their dream grill.
Noam

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