Lots of people get intimidated by the size of four and five-burner gas grills. Between placement and storage concerns as well as fuel consumption, they can be scary indeed. That’s why I often recommend just getting one of the best 2 burner gas grills you can afford, to put your mind at ease.
These tiny beasts can cook just as well as their larger, more professional counterparts, as long as you get the right combination of components, features, and technologies. Here’s how you can maximize your price to performance ratio when looking for smaller gas grills.
Best 2 Burner Gas Grills for Inexperienced and Professional Cooks
- Best 2 Burner Gas Grills for Inexperienced and Professional Cooks
- How Many BTUs Per Hours Should You Expect to Get?
- Compact Grills or Standing Grills
- Maximum Recommended Cooking Surface
- Features of Convenience
The Char-Broil Performance 300 grill has a cooking surface of 300 square inches as well as another 100 square inches in the form of a warming rack. The rack’s swing-away design provides proper clearance as well as a way to cook certain veggies with indirect heat.
I like that the lid is made of stainless steel and is quite thick. That helps retain heat and allows the built-in thermometer to give more accurate readings.
The Performance 300 also boasts a cabinet grill design. As such, it has ample storage space for your accessories and propane tank. Four heavy-duty casters support the grill. Two of them are lockable, as well they should be at this price range.
Another cool perk is the inclusion of two side shelves. You can use them to store your ingredients, marinades, sauces, or even to prep your skewers, buns, and anything else you want to grill.
The two burners put out a combined 24,000BTU per hour, which is more than enough for the 300 square inches cooking surface. The heat distribution seems even enough thanks to the shape of the burners.
The Weber Spirit II E-210 is one of the smaller Spirit grills using the GS4 grilling system. This system has been constructed around reliable burners, flavorizer bars, and superior grease management. It will infuse as much smoky flavor as possible, without the need for wood or charcoal.
Although it has just two burners, combined, they put up to 26,500BTU per hour. They cover a cooking space of 450 square inches. There’s plenty of room on the cooking grates, and there are at least two hot spots for you to get a perfect sear every time.
I like the use of porcelain-enameled coating on the grate and flavorizer bars. I also like the use of cast iron for the cooking grate. Even though it’s not the thickest grate, it has pretty decent heat retention and is relatively non-stick too. That is if you dedicate enough time to preheat it.
The open cart design is not my all-time favorite design. On the one hand, it’s very accessible for both tools and the propane tank. On the other hand, it’s one extra spot you’ll need to clean if you leave your grill in the open.
A better design feature is the two wheels and two legs combo, which gives the grill some portability while also providing superior stability to four-wheeled models.
Most two-burner gas grills are relatively big. However, some models, like the CGG-306 by Cuisinart, are tabletop modes. This grill is not only portable but also powerful as it can put up to 20,000BTU per hour with both burners set to max.
Due to its compact frame and cooking surface, you can preheat the CGG-306 and get it ready for action in under 10 minutes. That’s fast by most standards.
The grate is made of stainless steel and doesn’t feature a coating. However, the food shouldn’t stick if you preheat it properly. Luckily, stainless steel doesn’t take long to get piping hot. And, due to the thicker grate rods, it also has excellent heat retention.
You’ll find individual control knobs for each burner, as well as a lid-mounted temperature gauge. Note that even with the thick lid and low clearance, considerable amounts of heat can escape if you play with it too often.
My advice, treat the CGG-306 as a set-it-and-forget-it type grill. Know your temperatures, let it preheat, then put your ingredients, close the lid, and snap on the latch.
Between its all-black finish, large side shelves, and high-clearance lid, the Smoke Hollow LS2016-2 is one eye-catching outdoor grill. Its two burners combine for up to 15,000BTU per hour, which is good enough given the smaller primary cooking surface.
The cooking surface covers 285 square inches and is more than big enough to grill a couple of burgers at the same time. Due to the lower overall output, compared to similar models, the LS2016-2 will also allow you to cook on indirect heat and get tastier smoke infusions.
I also like the cart design, which has only two wheels instead of the traditional four casters. They provide the LS2016-2 with extra stability and enough portability to move it around the yard. What I don’t particularly like is that the cabinet is open. That means that extra cleaning will be involved.
The wire cooking grids heat up fast but don’t have the best heat retention or non-stick properties. However, they are porcelain-coated, which compensates a bit. Another great thing about this model is its affordability.
It compensates for a lot, including the open cart design, the wire cooking grate, and the fixed side shelves. It may have a large footprint, but it should prove a good investment for those looking to grill on a budget.
The Megamaster 820-0033M is another affordable liquid propane grill with two burners and a standard ignition system. The two heaters combine for a total of 16,000BTU, impressive for this size.
The ignition is a classic push-and-turn system. It’s not the most long-lasting type, but it is reliable, nonetheless. Given the 200 square inches of primary cooking space, this grill may not be the ideal one to use if you’re hosting a party.
However, even heat distribution makes the grill forgiving to inexperienced cooks. I like the side lid latches because they can keep the lid shut. That can prevent others from checking the food and releasing heat. They also allow you to use the lid’s handle as a carry handle when you’re moving the grill.
Although there’s not too much to say about the drip management system, you should know that the 820-0033M doesn’t flare up as much as you might expect. The best thing about it is that it will prevent too much smoke buildup and won’t alter the taste of the food.
Even if this is a compact, almost tabletop grill, it will still require assembly no matter where you buy it. That said, given smaller and fewer components, it should be a breeze compared to others.
Char-Broil is well known for its signature Surefire ignition system as well as its infrared heating prowess. I like this two-burner model because it has top-ported burners made of stainless steel and with superior temperature control.
The burners top out at 18,000BTU, which is not bad for a 325 square inches cooking surface. The cast-iron grates compensate for the lower output with excellent heat retention, and the porcelain coating helps minimize the risk of food sticking.
I also like that the side shelves are foldable. That should help a lot with storage. Another big plus in my book is that it has a closed cabinet. That provides an enclosed storage space that pests, water, and dirt can’t get into while the grill is not in use.
You may also appreciate the fact that you can adapt the 325 into a natural gas grill, should you want to get the gas conversion kit. Char-Broil sells it separately, though.
The burners can give you plenty of smoke due to the infrared heating technology. If you like darker char marks, this may be the grill for you. Just understand that it can create more smoke than you might be used to or expect.
This 100% stainless steel Giantex grill is one of the best compact two-burners on the market. It features a lockable lid, foldable legs, and a combined output of 20,000BTU.
The push and turn ignition system is intuitive and reliable. The grill can get very hot, very fast, so preheating won’t take as long as with other models. To get a sense of how small and powerful this grill is, consider the BTU rating and the fact that it measures only 22”x18”x15” (LWH).
It can be the ideal choice for boating, camping, balcony grilling, and other similar scenarios where floor space and portability are your main concerns.
You should also note that the lid is not very thick. So, keep grilling gloves close by for when it’s time to check the progress. I don’t have much to say about preventing flare-ups or drip management here, but I do commend the inclusion of a built-in temperature gauge.
8. Thermos 265
The Thermos 265 is eye candy for any BBQ enthusiast. Between the black finish, the slightly separated shelves, and its overall shape, the grill looks great in any backyard. It’s also not too shabby on power as the two burners combine for up to 26,500BTU.
I like the Piezo ignition system for its reliability and longevity. This grill also has porcelain coating inside the lid and the firebox. It does wonders for heat retention and makes cleaning the grill a lot easier.
Although the primary cooking surface is not too big, it’s still above average at 265 square inches. It has a porcelain coating for improved performance and convenience, as well.
It’s also vital that the lid is not just coated but thick and durable, as well. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about the side shelves, as they’re plastic. The hooks give them additional purpose.
Last but not least, I like the cart design as I think it provides better stability and decent portability. Just make sure you don’t drag the grill by the shelves.
You can find the Royal Gourmet GG2102 grill in both red and black finishes. Both models have two 12,000BTU burners that cover a cooking surface of 300 square inches. You’ll also be getting an extra 105 square inches with the warming rack.
The iron wiring grates are not the most durable, but unless you’re planning on stacking the warming rack with hefty cuts of meat, you will be fine. The main cooking grate is cast iron, again coated for convenience and superior heat retention.
I also like the use of a simple and efficient electronic ignition system. The metal shelves are a neat addition, too. Alas, they aren’t foldable and take up quite a bit of extra room.
Last but not least, the enclosed cabinet design is an essential feature to me, perhaps just as crucial as the removable grease cup.
How Many BTUs Per Hours Should You Expect to Get?
As the previous reviews indicate, you can get well over 25,000BTU even on a simple two-burner gas grill. But don’t think that BTUs are everything.
Sure, the higher the rating, the more powerful the burners will be. But that doesn’t mean that the performance is directly proportional to the total BTU rating of the grill.
Things such as the material of the cooking grate, its thickness, the style of the burner, and others will also contribute to how fast and how hot you can cook your meat.
Compact Grills or Standing Grills
When it comes to two-burner gas grills, you have so many options. You’ll seldom see tabletop gas grills featuring more than two burners. Likewise, you’ll never see freestanding grills with less than two.
So, whether you have a spot picked out in your yard, or you want a grill you can take with you on vacations, two-burner models give you all the versatility and variety you need.
I prefer compact models if traveling with a grill is the primary concern. However, because they’re small, flare-ups are regular occurrences. That’s because they have a low ceiling clearance and rarely feature a complex drip management system.
Smaller grills also tend to make more smoke and get considerably hotter than their freestanding counterparts. That means that working with a compact grill can be more dangerous if you don’t have the proper equipment.
Standing grills may take up more space, but they can also usually cook a lot more food at once. They also feature shelves that serve as prepping stations, and even cabinets to store the tank and other accessories. You’ll find that the prices don’t differ that much.
Maximum Recommended Cooking Surface
As far as the primary cooking surface is concerned, I recommend anywhere between 200 and 400 square inches for any two-burner gas grill. Anything over that range will run the risk of not getting enough heat to get a good sear and the iconic grill char marks.
There’s an argument to be made about safer indirect cooking with a larger cooking surface. However, keep in mind that many grills that offer over 400 square inches of real cooking space also have upwards of three burners.
A smaller cooking surface will perform just fine, as long as it has a decent coating, and the grate’s rods are not too much apart.
Features of Convenience
Always keep an eye out for built-in thermometers. Believe it or not, not all two-burner models have them. That’s especially true for tabletop models.
Look for foldable shelves whenever you can, as standing grills can take up a lot of space, even if they only have two burners.
Also, whenever possible, try to opt for a drip tray instead of a drip cup. That way, you can further mitigate the risk of flare-ups and have an easier time cleaning the grill.
Two Burners Might Be All You’ll Ever Need
Unless you plan on cooking burgers for a large party in record time, a two-burner gas grill may be the only outdoor cooking tool you’ll ever need. Pick a model that’s large enough to accommodate your usual BBQ menus. Finally, make sure that it’s a quality design that balances performance and reliability.
Peggy loves spending her free time visiting new restaurants, tasting new cuisines, and trying to replicate some of those incredibly tasty dishes in her own kitchen.