Why Do Grill Brands Move Production Overseas
Industries of every sort, especially manufacturing, have trended towards moving production overseas for the last quarter century.
Cheap labor costs, lucrative import policies, as well as availability of labor force drives companies to move out of Uncle Sams backyard into a more easterly direction.
China, India, and other countries in the orient provide cheap materials and cheaper labor, and with the dawn of the global supply chain, shipping has become an afterthought when compared to production costs.
That being said, the recent supply chain issues and tariffs on steel might incentivize companies to rethink their production policies and procedures.
With USA steel making a comeback, we could start seeing the list of grills made in USA expanding, rather than shrinking. Regardless of the future state, there is a broad range of American made pellet grills on the market today.
If you want to stay with made in USA, its going to cost you around a grand to enter the market, but the quality in these brands is unmatched by their overseas counterparts.
Durability and reliability are the name of the game in the outdoor kitchen market, and these brands are certain to provide a product that satisfies.
A To Z List Of The Best Bbq Wood Pellets
A pellet grill/smoker is only as good as the BBQ pellets you put into it. The type/quality of the BBQ wood pellets you use will impact temperature performance and smoke flavour. There are many pellet flavours including Apple, Hickory, Mapel, Oak and Walnut to name but a few. However, some brands are hardwood blended pellets whereas others are 100% single wood species.
In this article, I provide details on over 20 brands of BBQ wood pellets, their range of flavours, whether they are 100% single wood species or hardwood blended pellets, their typical price and where they are available. I also provide tips on how to get the best deal when buying BBQ wood pellets and how to test pellet quality. Finally, I discuss the new kid on the block, charcoal pellets and their special attributes compared to all other hardwood BBQ pellets.
Royall Grills & Smokers Made In Reedsburg Wisconsin
You may not be aware of Royall grills as they have little presence online apart from their own website, hence youll struggle to find an owners review on YouTube for instance.
However, Royall have been producing pellet grills/smokers since 2011 and according to Royall from their website these grills are completely manufactured in the USA.
I have managed to find a video interview with the owner of Royall Grills & Smokers from way back in 2011 at a BBQ event, Ive included that video below.
An interview with the owner of Royall Grills & Smokers from 2011
Despite their low profile on YouTube etc Royall Grills & Smokers appear to still be in business and their products have been updated from those seen in the video above.
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Great Pellet Grills Made In The Usa
Outdoor living, backyard get-togethers, family cookouts, and grilling meals at home are as American as baseball or apple pie. With so much riding on your need to have a quality pellet grill that fits your home life, there are a lot of things to consider. Many companies have moved their manufacturing overseas to cut costs, but thankfully there are still some great pellet grills made in the USA to choose from, and well be sharing our thoughts on each of them below.
We considered several factors when deciding on which grills to add to this list. Some of these factors are the cooking capacity of the pellet grill, its features, the build materials, and of course, the all-important price. We also made sure that all of these grills are built in the USA, so you can rest assured you are supporting local businesses here at home as much as possible.
|1250 sq in
Pitts and Spitts Origin and Manufacturing Locations
The Pitts and Spitts brand is a well-known and revered brand in the BBQ community and is known for making high-quality grills. Based in Texas, Pitts and Spitts have been in business for over 35 years, dating back to 1983.
What We Love About Pitts and Spitts Maverick Pellet Grills
The Maverick 1250 features the same PID controller that the Pitts and Spitts brand has been praised for. This PID controller offers flexible and accurate temperature control and helps to cook your food to precise doneness with exceptional flavor.
Who We Recommend These Grills For:
Are There Pellet Grills Made In The Usa
It might surprise you but when you buy a home appliance from an American retailer or a US brand, that doesnt have to mean they were made in America. The majority of appliances in our homes are, in fact, made in China.
This has many reasons, such as low manufacturing costs, better marketing and dealer percentages and a competitive profit margin. All this also impacts the price we pay as consumers.
There are plenty of pellet grills and smokers on the market today, and some are still made in the USA. If you want an American pellet grill, because you want to support American manufacturing that can produce long-lasting grills with a good quality finish, then take a look at our list of pellet grills made in the USA.
Fortunately, there are still several American manufacturers of pellet grills you can choose from and we have more info on each below.
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Who Invented The Pellet Grill And Where Did The Pellet Smokers Come From
Joe Traeger first invented pellet grills in the mid-1980s and also patented his design. Traeger is the original pellet grill and the first pellet grill available to consumers. Joe Traeger started his company making pellet stoves and then used all his knowledge to develop the pellet grill we know today.
In 2006 when Traegers pellet grill patent expired, other grill manufacturers jumped to the market and manufactured their own pellet grill brands and models.
In the early days, most pellet smokers had simple controllers with few settings, and the technology was simple. Digital thermostatic controllers dictate pellet-feed cycles using temperature sensors inside the cooking chamber.
These grills have come a long way, and new technology can be found in new models. Wireless remote operation, monitoring, and integration with mobile devices are common in new wireless pellet grills and smokers.
Now you can monitor cooking and meat temperatures from your smartphone, allowing you to cook delicious dishes while enjoying time with friends.
Why Pellet Grills Are Made Overseas
Manufacturing pellet grills in America is more expense than building them overseas.
For example, Grilla Grills mentions on their website that they shifted their manufacturing operations overseas because it became harder to compete with cheaper, imported ones. The 40 year old Michigan-based company moved its manufacturing to China to reduce its production cost to make the grills less expensive.
This was a tough choice between shutting down their company or going overseas to lower their manufacturing costs in order to compete with cheaper, imported pellet grills.
So in order for more pellet grill brands to offer products made in the USA we need to buy pellet grills that are made in the USA.
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Fast Eddys Cookshack Pellet Smokers Pg500 Available At Cookshackcom
Basically, Cookshack keeps to Ed Maurins simple design using a dual layer of thick 304 stainless steel separated by high temperature insulation to hold in heat. Heat is provided by an electronically controlled 36,000 BTU pellet burner fed from an external hopper .
The computer controlled system maintains the smoker temperature with a high degree of precision so you dont have to deal with fluctuations. With the optional temperature probe you can put your meat in the smoker, set the desired target temperature and the FEC will take it from there. Once the target temperature is reached the smoker temperature will drop into a holding position until you are ready to remove your barbecue.
Pit Boss 440 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill
You have a huge choice when it comes to portable pellet grills.
We picked the 440 Deluxe, although you could just as easily go with the Sportsman Portable which comes with folding legs.
The cooking space is divided between a 340 square inch main grill, and a 100 square inches on the upper rack. Both grills are made out of porcelain coated steel.
The rack is removable which comes in handy when its time to take your meat off, just take the whole grill off.
This model includes a handy side shelf, and includes tool hooks for easy storage.
The 5lb hopper is definitely on the small side, so this isnt a good grill if you want to set up a cook and then leave for the day.
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Pg1000 Fast Eddys By Cookshack Pellet Grill
The PG1000 is twice the grill of the PG500 listed above. It has the same stainless steel construction and direct flame searing capability, but also a much larger cooking area. Of course, at nearly $3,000USD this is an expensive pellet cooker. At this price range, you can get larger cooking space as well as better technology, but you wont get the corrosion resistant construction. If you live near the ocean, this is a pellet grill to consider.
Is It A Smoker Or A Grill
Manufacturers market pellet cookers as both grills and smokers. Due of their versatility, these grills can do both. Depending on the manufacturer, a quality pellet grill has the bulk of the characteristics of a big offset smoker, including indirect fire cooking and low-temperature cooking.
These grills can also achieve temperatures high enough to cook hamburgers, and some can even sear steaks.
Some manufacturers offer pellet smokers designed specifically for smoking meat, which typically operate at lower temperatures and do not reach high enough temperatures to grill hamburgers or steaks.
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Weber Made In Huntley Illinois
Being the biggest name in BBQ, Weber came into the pellet grill game with their SmokeFire range much later than many people expected .
There are features of the Weber SmokeFire range I like, and there are some features which Im not a fan of. Some of these issues were addressed with the Gen 2 SmokeFire, however, when it comes to its smoking capabilities, I still think theres room for improvement.
Anyway, what we are talking about here is where are the Weber SmokeFire pellet grills made? Well, Weber states they are made in Chicago , specifically in Huntley, Illinois just outside of Chicago.
The Weber SmokeFire EX4 and the EX6 are stated by Weber to be made in Chicago: Images BBQGuys.com
If thats the case why have I written Sort Of in the title? Well, Weber states their SmokeFire pellet grills are made in Chicago from U.S. and globally sourced components.
Hence, its not actually clear if the Chicago plant is simply an assembly line, or if like the other brands below actual fabrication of the pellet grills is being carried out in the US.
The Weber SmokeFire range is priced at around $1,000 to $1,200, as other brands around that price point are not able to produce a grill in the US for that price point, how are Weber able to?
You could say its because Weber is the largest BBQ manufacturer, hence through scale they have cracked the code of making a pellet grill in the US for that price point, and that might very well be the case.
Twin Eagles Pellet Grills
Twin Eagles set its sights on users grilling experience and use the finest materials to create luxurious-looking grills and high-end products. Twin Eagles pellet grills can be called the Mercedes Benz of grills. These grills look and feel like top-level gas grills, but Twin Eagles pellet grills are fueled by wood pellets.
A Twin Eagles pellet grill will set you back a few bucks. Still, no other grills come close to the elegancy, fit and finish, and technology included in these grills. This companys primary focus is enjoying outdoor living in style.
While other brands in this list cater more to the commercial or completion BBQ enthusiasts, this brand niche is stylish outdoor living.
Twin Eagles makes all its pellet grills in California, USA. This company has set its focus on luxury pellet cooking grills and outdoor home appliances. The engineers emphasize on precision, superior performance, and elegant finishing.
I love brand stories like Cookshack and Fast Eddy. The Cookshack, then a small company started as a husband and wife team, Gene and Judy Ellis, found a shared passion and developed a line of BBQ rubs and sauces still in the market today.
Eventually, and a common trade among the top pitmasters, Gene realized that the best cookers available in the market werent good enough for his craft and built and designed his own. This was the beginning of Cookshack, but then Eddy joined the story.
Cookshack PG500 Fast Eddys Pellet Grill
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Z Grills Affordable Quality And Performance
Z Grill is another brand gaining popularity and has built a large following over the last few years. Many people do not know that Z Grills used to make and manufacture pellet grills for other very well-known brands.
This is a common approach in which some businesses bring a product to market by outsourcing manufacturing and private labeling it. The Z Grills company knows a lot about building good grills. Z Grills provides high-quality grills at half the cost of Traeger and many other brands. You dont get the technology of a Traeger grill, but you also dont get their sticker price price.
Simple Process To Start Pellet Grilling
Now that weve gone over how a pellet grill works, lets go over the steps to get your pellet grill up and running and get started.
All you have to do is turn on the grill then you will hear the fan, and the auger will start spinning.
Be sure to open the lid and let the white smoke come out of the chamber.
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Twin Eagle Pellet Grills
This luxury grill manufacturer has two pellet grills in its line up depending on the size. The aesthetic and build quality are top notch in their offerings, utilizing clean stainless steel materials made in USA.
There are some extra features in the design of these grills that set them apart from the rest. The frontloaded hopper for wood pellets is outside of the norm, but makes refilling and monitoring a breeze.
But you are not limited to wood pellets only on this grill, you can utilize a lump or hardwood charcoal insert that can maximize smoky flavor on whatever you might be grilling.
The double walled braided stainless steal hood provides excellent heat retention. Conveniently located drip trays on either side of the front of the grill also makes cleaning a breeze.
If money isnt a huge issue, these American made grills would make even a seasoned smoker jealous.
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Which Pellet Grills Are Made In Usa Complete List 2022
Have you ever heard of pellet grills? Not to be confused with ordinary smokers that are typically used for outdoor grilling and fuel by charcoal or whole wood, these grills operate with wood pellets and electricity.
They can be used to smoke, braise, sear, bake, and grill food through the use of an electric control panel that automatically feeds wood pellets to the fire.
This sounds like the next-level evolution of modern technology but pellet grills arent anything new.
Pellets were used in stoves as an alternative heat source in 1973 during an oil crisis when there was an overbearing demand for affordable heating in homes.
Wood pellets are small capsules made of compressed sawdust and were invented in the United States where many brands produce grills with this type of fuel today.
A lot of grill-lovers have heard of or maybe even used a Traeger grill which is considered the first of its kind.
Joe Traeger created the pellet grill in 1985 and patented it in 1986 after he and Jerry Whitfield began experimenting with pellet-burning stoves. The patent lasted for 20 before it became open season for competitors to copy the original design and begin producing their brands.
With this came market expansion that called for international distribution of the grills, so many that were made in USA have gone on to different countries around the world.
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Cheapest Twin Eagles Pellet Grill/smoker 36 Built
Now, the words cheap and Twin Eagles dont really go together as youll see when you look at the price below. While as we have discussed above when it comes to US made pellet grills/smokers you should expect to pay more, you maybe didnt think this much more
If you want the Rolls Royce equivalent when it comes to pellet grills, then thats this full stainless steel 36 pellet grill/smoker from Twin Eagles: Image BBQGuys.com
When it comes to the cheapest Twin Eagles as there is only currently one model available it doesnt really mean much, especially considering its price below. Do I geniunly believe its the best pellet grill on the market, yes. But do I think it can justify its price point? Thats a different question.
Total Cooking Area = 939 sq.in Pellet Hopper Capacity = 13 lbsTemperature Range = 140 to 725 degreesDirect-Flame Access? = Yes Availability = BBQGuys.com