Everything You Need to Know About Buying an RV Grill

Last Updated on July 24, 2021 by Chris and Lindsay

Among all of the RV essentials you’ll want to pack into your RV for your next adventure, having the best RV grill must be at the top of the list. Nothing beats being able to cook a meal in the great outdoors.

Whether you want to want to cook on charcoal, propane or even over a bed of coals at your campsite fire, having the best camper grill for your RV is essential to the camping experience. 

Finding a great grill can be difficult. But we’ve spent hours researching the grill we wanted for our RV and we could not be happier with the choice. We’ve learned over time through trial and error that each grill offers its own advantages and disadvantages.

But we’ll save you the time and effort and give you the best portable grill for RV options with all of the things we like and don’t like. Plus we’ll share which grill we chose for our RV and why we think it is the all-around best grill for any RV. 

Affiliate Disclaimer: This post may contain links to products we think you’ll like. If you purchase any of the products through the links below we’ll receive a small commission. As full-time RVers, we know our RV products well and only recommend those that we either own or would consider owning ourselves.

The Best RV Grills

Blackstone Table Top Propane Griddle

Out of the 7 portable grill for RV that we recommend, our favorite is the Blackstone Tabletop Griddle. This was not our first choice when we set out on the road. But it has become our go-to and the best portable grill you should consider.

We love its versatility in offering the benefits of both grills and griddles. From cooking burgers or stir fry for dinner to hashbrowns and eggs for breakfast, this portable gas grill lets you do it all.

 Our first portable gas grill for RVing on the road was a simple tailgating grill that was handed down to us. We did our best to make it work, fumbling with the parts and nuts and bolts that often rattled loose. But with this high quality portable propane grill, there are very few parts.

In fact there are only 4. The griddle top, the grill base, the catch tray and the propane regulator.

While you can use the standard small green propane canisters for this RV grill, we eventually built an extra propane hose with a quick connect between the grill and our propane cylinders. This gave us the feel and function as though we had a true outdoor RV kitchen even though space was cramped in our truck camper.

The Blackstone Tabletop Griddle is by far at the top of the list of the best RV grills, offering great value at a reasonable price and the versatility to be able to cook pretty much anything while you camp.

PROSCONS
* Easy to clean
* Durable aluminum and cast iron construction
* Large H shaped stainless steel 12,000 BTU burner
* 260 square inches of cooking surface
* Electric igniter
* Removable grease catch tray
* Heavy
* Uneven cooking temps at back and sides of the griddle
* Can’t use in windy conditions

Weber Q1000

The Weber Q 1000 Gas Grill is widely considered to be one the best RV grills on the market. With its compact and lightweight design, stainless steel burner, porcelain-enameled cast-iron grates and cast aluminum lid and body it’s easy to see why.

You can easily light up this grill with the push-button ignition and quickly preheat the grill in under 15 minutes while you prep your meal for grilling.

With its infinite control burner valve grilling is made easy and when you’re done clean up is a breeze with a removable grease catch pan. For a small propane grill, it offers a considerable amount of cooking surface of up to 189 square inches and can fit 6 decent-sized burgers.

You can also purchase different style grates/griddle inserts that make this grill super versatile. 

All in all this is a fantastic portable grill that’s durable and has great features, perfect for grilling up some delicious BBQ! 

PROSCONS
* Compact and lightweight
* Stainless steel burner that produces 8500 BTUs
* Push-button ignition
* Heat control valve
* Versatile split grates so you can choose to use a grill or griddle
* Regulators tend to fail

Coleman Roadtrip LXE

The Coleman Roadtrip XLE is one of the best portable gas grills on the market. It has a collapsible stand and wheels that make maneuvering and packing away this grill a breeze.

Grill up whatever your heart desires on the large 285 sq in cooking surface and not worry about anything sticking to the porcelain coated cast iron grill plates.

With two powerful burners blasting out 20,000 BTUs that are independently adjustable this portable propane grill can handle practically anything you put on it. 

PROSCONS
* Interchangeable cooktops
* Instastart button
* Delivers 20,000 BTUs between two burners
* Collapsible design
* Cast-iron and porcelain-coated surfaces
* Some consumers reported rust issues
* Heavy

Char-Broil Grill2Go X200 Portable TRU-Infrared Liquid Propane Gas Grill

The Char-Broil Grill2Go Tru-Infrared grill is built to withstand the rigors of travel with a cast aluminum firebox and lid, high impact frame with legs, side carrying handles and stainless steel latches.

Throw it into your RV storage compartment then quickly grab it when you want to BBQ with no worries that the char-broil Grill2Go won’t be up to the task!

The best feature of this RV grill is the high quality TRU-infrared cooking system which spreads heat evenly across the stainless steel grill plates producing juicier food with less flare-ups.

The gas grill weighs less than 20 pounds for easier portability yet still has 200 square inches of cooking surface. That’s enough to cook up to 8 good size burgers, a perfect size for RVing!

PROSCONS
* Cast aluminum firebox and lid
* High-impact frame
* No flare-up TRU-Infrared cooking system
* 200 square inches stainless-steel grilling grate
* Push-button ignition
* Built-in temperature gauge 
* 9,500 BTU stainless steel burner
* Grate corrodes easily
* Needs a special tool to clean grate
* Some consumers reported needing an aftermarket valve to control/lower cooking temps 

Cuisinart CGG-180 Petit Gourmet Tabletop Grill

The Cuisinart CGG 180 Petit Gourmet RV grill is easily one of the most portable grills on the market.

And at such an affordable price point you really can’t beat it! Its compact size, foldable legs, lid latch and carrying handle make it easy to store in a small RV and bring along to any occasion where you need to grill up some amazing BBQ. 

This is a more traditional RV grill and one you’ll likely see at campgrounds throughout your travels.

PROSCONS
* Compact and lightweight
* Foldable legs
* Twist to start electric ignition
* 145 Square inch porcelain-enameled cooking grate
* Precision temperature gauge
* Integrated lid lock and briefcase-style carrying handle 
* Affordable
* Has some plastic pieces that could melt
* 5,500 BTU burner

Weber Smokey Joe 14 inch Charcoal Grill

This is a fantastic little grill for those that love to have a smokey charcoal flavor to their meat. It’s just large enough to cook for 2-3 people and small enough to be portable and pack away in a smaller RV.

It has a lid that locks with a convenient carrying handle so it won’t disassemble during travel and can be easily moved around even while grilling.

The Smokey Joe charcoal grill has been known for its great quality over the years due to its porcelain-enameled lid and bowl that will never rust. Know for sure this mighty little grill will deliver juicy and tasty BBQ for many years!

If you enjoy cooking on charcoal you can’t go wrong with the Weber Smokey Joe. It is built by a reputable brand in the grill industry so you can count on getting a quality portable grill if you buy this one.

PROSCONS
* Compact and lightweight
* Porcelain-enameled lid and bowl
* Tuck-N-Carry lid lock
* Handle makes it easy to carry and move around
* Dampers allow control of the cooking temperature
* Vents are on the side instead of the bottom causing low airflow
* Not large enough to cook for more than 2-3 people

Flame King Motorhome Gas Grill

The Flame King gas grill is made specifically for RV’s and designed to connect directly into your RVs LP gas system. It comes with a bracket to mount to the side of your camper or the attached hanging rack can be used as legs so the grill can be used free standing. Being able to use your RVs existing LP gas system makes this grill super convenient and when you’re done just slide it off the mount and pack away and with a dual locking lid you will rest easy knowing it’s stored securely. This is a no frills grill but has what you need to make delicious BBQ or juicy burgers.

PROSCONS
* Large grilling surface with upper grill deck
* Comes with a bracket ready to mount to your RV
* Can be mounted or freestanding
* Dual locking lid for secure storage
* Good Price
* Not made from durable or rust resistant metal/materials
* Only compatible with a standard propane cylinder or your RV’s LPG system
* Has extremely sharp edges 

What to look for in the perfect RV grill

When shopping for the best RV grill you’re going to want to consider several factors. Each factor comes with its own pros and cons and a lot of the decision will come down to personal choice. 

Some of the most important things to consider in finding the best portable grill are the space it takes up, the type of fuel it consumes, it’s BTU rating and additional features such as ignitors, heat control and, of course, price.

Here’s a little more about each factor and what you will want to consider before making your RV grill purchase.

Size, Portability and Weight

By far the overall space a portable RV grill takes up is quite possibly the most important factor to consider before buying a grill. If you’ve owned a standard grill at your house you’ve likely found that it is pretty awesome. Being able to cook virtually anything for a large gathering of friends and family is one of the reasons why people love grilling.

But packing this up into your RV is a different story.

Of course, it is a little extreme to think about taking your grill from home with you on the road. But what’s not extreme is choosing a portable grill that you think is amazing and then finding out that you don’t have the space to carry it!

Or maybe it fits, but is a lot of work to set up and breakdown, stealing your joy for cooking on the grill in the first place.

If you are like us, you are going to want the largest cooking area possible while not taking up too much storage space.

As you search for the best RV grill be sure you have an idea of the dimensions of where you want to store it so you can confirm whether it fits in your RV. Each portable RV grill that we recommend is compact in size and weight and is quite portable. But be sure to have measurements specific to your storage space in your RV.

Type of Portable Grill Fuel

There are two primary kinds of fuel for RV grills: gas and charcoal. Of course, you could throw in a campfire as a third source. But for these portable grills, you are looking at either a propane grill or charcoal grill.

If you are familiar with cooking on charcoal you may prefer the taste and style of a charcoal grill for your RV. Just keep in mind that you’ll need to carry the charcoal with you and make sure that you dispose of it properly when you are done.

Charcoal grills can be great options if you do not plan to live full-time in your RV.

But we prefer a propane gas grill for our RV. While carrying the little green canisters of fuel can be challenging (and expensive) at times, we found a way to hook up our Blackstone Griddle directly to our RV propane so we aren’t redundant in carrying fuel.

A propane grill typically offers better distribution of heat than charcoal grills. And with a tabletop gas grill you can quickly ignite and extinguish the grill in the event you need to pack up and move quickly.

Construction

How the RV grill is constructed will speak more to the quality of the grill and the type of cooking that you can do. Options for materials typically include aluminum, steel, stainless steel, cast iron and porcelain (or a combination of each).

Aluminum and stainless steel are the most common. These are pretty durable and lightweight and typically offer reasonable price points. RV grills that are made of cast iron or porcelain can be a bit more pricey but they are also going to be more durable.

Our Blackstone liquid propane grill combines the lightweight stainless steel body and burner with the heavier-duty cast iron griddle for one of the best combinations of lightweight and durability.

Burner Type

The type of burner in your RV grill will determine how quickly your food cooks as well as how evenly heat is distributed throughout the grill. Of course, this only applies if you are shopping for propane grills as you will cook directly on charcoal if you go that route.

You have a few options to consider here, most of which will consist of stainless steel burners.

Stainless tube burners come either in straight shape or u-shaped form, are pretty rust-resistant and distribute heat quite evenly, particularly those that are u-shaped.

Cast stainless steel is thicker and absorbs and distributes heat a little more evenly and are great at resisting rust.

Infrared burners will give you the most fuel efficiency, but will also pack the most punch in terms of heat. Expect to cook a meal quickly on these burners. But know that they may not be best for cooking for longer over lower heat.

Ceramic burners are great if you worry about the rust because they will not rust. However, they are fragile and susceptible to breaking more easily, which is definitely a downside to the literal bumps in the road that come with the RV life.

Cast iron burners are for the old school and are mostly outdated and replaced by stainless steel. They are more durable but also highly susceptible to rust.

BTU Rating

British Thermal Units (BTU) rating is a standard way of measuring both heat output and fuel efficiency in a grill. Unlike other forms of measurement, the BTU rating does not tell you whether the higher (or lower) the number the better. In fact, it is recommended that you avoid portable grills that rate on either end of the BTU extreme.

Instead, you can make sure to aim for somewhere in the middle, between 50-100 BTUs per square inch. By far the most efficient form of burner is the infrared burner mentioned above. These burners make the most of their BTU rating by creating the opportunity for maximum heat with minimal fuel consumption.

Cost

Clearly, the cost can be a significant factor when deciding which portable grill for RVs is best for you. But as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. While we are incredibly budget-minded in our RV lifestyle, we do believe that sometimes you need to spend a little more for the value you receive in not having to purchase a product again.

We feel this way particularly about our RV safety essentials and, of course, our coffee maker! So when it comes to choosing the best portable grill for RV, spending a little more for one that is reliable, compact and can handle the bounces in the road is important to us and worth a little more.

But grills for RV are also not life-saving appliances (well, maybe to you they may be!) so you can cut costs in a grill if there are other budget priorities you have.

Additional Features

Shopping for the best portable grill for RV is not as complex as shopping for a car when it comes to bells and whistles. But you should be aware that there are all sorts of conveniences you can find in a variety of different grill options.

These include whether you have a push-button ignitor, interchangeable grill plates, heat control and temperature gauge. You will also want to determine how easy to clean the grill is and how much cooking area you would like.