10 BEST Pellet Grills for Searing Even the Toughest Steaks

Pellet grills do an exceptional job when it comes to smoking and grilling. In some cases, they even outperform their charcoal and gas brethren.

But when it comes to searing at high heat, they tend to struggle.

However, there are exceptions to this case.

In this guide, I’ll show you the 10 best pellet grills for searing that can make steakhouse-quality sear marks.

What Are the Best Pellet Grills for Searing for the Money?

Best Pellet Grills for Searing Reviews

Camp Chef 24 in. WIFI Woodwind Pellet Grill & Smoker with Sear Box (PGSEAR) – WIFI & Bluetooth Connectivity

Best with Sear Box
Camp Chef Woodwind 24
  • Sear Box which gets up to 900 F
  • 160 F to 500 F temperature range from slow smoking to grilling (25,000 BTU)
  • Dial in your smoke level with our Smoke Control
  • Slide and Grill technology that allows for direct flame cooking with temps up to 650 F
  • Patented Ash Kickin Cleanout system
  • ALL NEW WIFI & Bluetooth PID controller with 4 meat probe ports

When it comes to searing on a pellet grill, the Woodwind by Camp Chef wins the race by a mile.

It performed so well that I already featured it as the best pellet grill from the money for searing.


  • Total Cooking Area: 811 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 22 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 160°F – 900°F
  • Dimensions: 30 x 43 x 49 inches
  • Weight: 156 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 years

Burn Baby, Burn

If you want to put some serious heat to the meat, fire up the sear box.

This high-heat cooking marvel can reach temperatures up to 900°F which is more than enough for quality steakhouse sear marks.

The cast-iron porcelain-enameled grates not only evenly distribute heat but also makes cleaning a child’s play.

It includes a single 16,000 BTU stainless steel burner.

The surface area is 184 square inches which are big enough for 6-8 burgers.

The only downside is that you need a propane tank.

Slide and Grill

If the grill’s 500°F max temperature isn’t enough for you, then increase it to 650°F with a simple pull of a knob.

In this case, you switch from indirect to direct cooking.

Feed the Whole Bunch

Despite its compact size, it has a surprisingly large cooking area.

The main lower part is 429 square inches large and the upper one is 382 square inches.

Combine them both and you get a whopping 811 square inches.

Easy Ash Removal System

Just pull the knob of the Ash-kickin’ cleanout system and all of the ash falls into a removable cup.

It doesn’t get simpler than this.

The Pinnacle of Convenience

Not only is the controller PID (compared to a regular pellet grill controller, this one is much more reliable, precise, and durable) but you can also connect your phone to it and control it remotely from the couch.


If you want to increase your cooking versatility on this grill (let’s say you want to make breakfast), you can easily replace the Sear box with a pizza oven or griddle (sold separately).

Additional Features Worth Mentioning

Below the grill is a utility shelf. The hopper’s lid also acts as a side shelf.

The hopper has a bottle opener.

You get 4 meat probes with the grill.

Precisely dial in the smoking with Smart smoke technology.

What I Noticed

6 months after getting it I’ve noticed several rust spots. It wasn’t a big deal, really. Just a few small surface spots.

This is probably my fault since I didn’t use a cover.

I don’t wish to repeat this mistake nor do I want you to experience the same so I suggest you get yourself a cover.

Get the Best, Bypass the Rest

when it comes to juicy sear marks infused with smokey flavor, nothing beats the Camp Chef Woodwind 24.

  • Included sear box and 4 meat probes
  • Generous cooking area
  • Easy to assemble and operate
  • Amazing smokey taste
  • Simple to clean
  • The sear box is propane-fueled
  • Prone to rust

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Camp Chef 36 in. WiFi Woodwind Pellet Grill & Smoker with Sear Box (PGSEAR) – WiFi & Bluetooth Connectivity

Best for Steaks
Camp Chef Woodwind 36
  • Sear Box which gets up to 900 F
  • 160 F to 500 F temperature range from slow smoking to grilling (25,000 BTU)
  • Dial in your smoke level
  • Slide and Grill technology that allows for direct flame cooking with temps up to 650 F
  • Patented Ash Kickin Cleanout system

“Size matters” is the motto of this cooking behemoth.


  • Total Cooking Area: 1,236 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 22 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 160°F – 900°F
  • Dimensions: 30 x 64 x 49 inches
  • Weight: 187 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 years

Woodwind 24’s Bigger Brother

If 811 square inches aren’t enough for you, then get ready to rock with this one’s total cooking surface of 1,236 square inches.

The main rack is 663 square inches large and the upper one is 573 square inches.

Spec- and feature-wise, it’s the same as the Woodwind 24 above, with one exception (apart from size): this one has 2 caster wheels. This makes sense since it’s much heavier.

  • Included sear box and 4 meat probes
  • Gigantic cooking area
  • Easy to assemble and operate
  • Amazing smokey taste
  • Simple to clean
  • The sear box is propane-fueled
  • Prone to rust

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Oklahoma Joe’s 20202106 Rider Deluxe Pellet Grill

Best Under $700
Oklahoma Joe's Rider Deluxe
  • Pit Control System
  • Sear Mode can fire up red-hot temperatures over 650°F
  • Superior versatility
  • Tall-body smoke chamber allows for more capacity
  • Heavy-gauge steel construction

if you’re looking for a high-end grill that costs as much as a mid-end one, then look no further than the Rider Deluxe (DLX)


  • Total Cooking Area: 1,234 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 20 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 175°F – 650°F
  • Dimensions: 31.2 x 55.5 x 54.2 inches
  • Weight: 233 lbs
  • Warranty: 2 years

Specially Made for Searing

Once you open the lid you’ll find a circular grate in the middle.

This is designed for high-heat searing.

Once you set the grill by sliding the front lever from “smoke” to “sear”, you’ll be able to sear quality juicy steaks at direct heat with temperatures up to 650°F!

Unlike the Woodwind, you don’t need a separate propane tank. It’s all-natural pellets here, baby.

A Behemoth of a Grill

It’s a bit bigger than the Woodwind 36 although it doesn’t look that much bigger than the Woodwind 24.

This is because of the taller cooking chamber.

It’s so tall it accommodates 3 racks instead of 2!

The main rack is 578 square inches large and the two upper ones are 328 square inches large each. All of them are cast iron and coated in porcelain.

Add them together, and you get a whooping total cooking surface of 1,234 square inches.

This translates to:

  • 8 baby back ribs
  • 12 whole chickens
  • 8 pork shoulders
  • 24 corn cobs

Adjustable Racks

You can fine-tune the distance between the fire and the food easily thanks to the Flex Grate and Rack System.

You can even add additional racks but you have to buy them separately.

Made for Punishment

The heavy-gauge steel construction makes it tough and the thick powder coating makes it even tougher.

What I like about this one, even more, are the wheels which are just as tough as the other parts. They aren’t made from regular cheap plastic.

Large-Capacity Hopper With a Twist

Ever wondered what’s the large bucket for?

It’s for safer and more convenient storage of leftover pellets.

Once you’re done cooking, simply place the bucket under the hopper, pull the lever, and the hopper is empty.

A simple yet brilliant feature.

Ample Prep Space With Added Convenience

Besides the bottom and side shelf, this grill features a towel bar with 4 hooks.

Improved Cooking Experience

The two chimneys on the lid aren’t just for looks.

The airflow is increased and the heat is distributed more evenly.

The Downsides of This Particular Model

Because of its sheer size and durable materials, the thing is quite heavy.

Once I opened the box, I noticed a small dent on the lid. I’m not the only one as there were several other customers that complained about similar things. Be sure to expect every inch of the grill once it arrives at your doorstep and contact support without hesitation.

Also, the auger motor suddenly stopped working the second time I used it. Thankfully, the support staff responded (I think her name was Tiffany) lightning-fast and I got a new one the following day.

Big and Beautiful

For this kind of performance and reliability, it deserves a higher price tag. Luckily it doesn’t have one.

  • Can reach temperatures of 650°F
  • Gigantic cooking area
  • Ample prep space
  • Spot-on instructions and simple assembly
  • Super-easy to use
  • Heavy
  • QC problems

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Weber 23510201 SmokeFire EX6 (2nd Gen) Wood Fired Pellet Grill

Best Under $1000
Weber SmokeFire EX6 (2nd Gen)
  • Porcelain-enamel finish helps prevent rusting and cracking
  • Large 1,008 square inches of dual grilling space
  • DC powered engine, specially designed to prevent auger jams
  • Distributes even heat
  • Enhanced grilling performance
  • Includes 2 meat probes
  • Sears as well as it smokes

Even in the world of pellet grills, you can still find a Weber that stands out.


  • Total Cooking Area: 1,008 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 20 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 200°F – 600°F
  • Dimensions: 30.3 x 55.5 x 31.3 inches
  • Weight: 204 lbs
  • Warranty: Cook box 5 years, other parts 3 years

Sears as Well as Smokes

Just as with gas and charcoal grills, Weber has proven itself yet again with it cooking versatility and reliability.

Although the minimum temperature is a bit high, the sear marks this grill produces are nothing short of a culinary masterpiece.

Flavorizer Bars

One distinct feature that makes Weber a Weber is the flavorizer bars.

Unlike traditional diffuser plates that block the flame, making direct cooking virtually impossible, flavorizer bars are designed in a way that makes this possible (you can’t really sear without a direct flame).

Not only this, the flavor is enhanced and the heat is more consistent, making your next BBQ an even more delightful experience.

Porcelain-Coated Finish

The whole grill, not just the grates is coated in porcelain.

This not only makes the grill pleasant to look at but also greatly increases its durability and heat retention.

Ample Cooking Surface

It has a total cooking surface of 1,008 square inches which consists of 2 racks.

The bottom rack is 648 square inches large and measures 18 x 36 inches while the upper one is 360 square inches and measures 10 x 36 inches.

Empty the Whole Bag of Pellets Into the Hopper

The hopper has the capacity to hold an entire 20 lb bag of pellets.

This feature is highly convenient as first, there’s not a chance in the world you’ll run out of fuel mid-cookout, and second, since the bag is empty you simply throw it away instead of saving a pound or two of leftover pellets.

Weber Connect Smart Grilling Technology

To make this grill even more convenient, the folks at Weber integrated the grills controller with WiFi capabilities.

This is no regular phone app that just lets you monitor and regulate the temperature as most WiFi pellet grills do.

It turns your phone into a total remote control.

It features tons of unique and awesome features.

Some include:

  • Temperature control
  • Step-by-step grilling assistance
  • Notifications on when to flip and serve
  • Countdown timer
  • Doneness alert
  • Remote shutdown
  • Smoke control

Exclusive Easy-Clean System

No more disassembly, tough scraping, and vacuuming in order to clean the grill.

All of the ash and grease fall down into a single drawer that catches both. The grease falls into a separate compartment, making disposal both nice, fast, and easy.

Weather Resistant LCD Display

The brains of the grill are just as important as the grill itself.

Weber knows this all too well and made the display just as resistant to the elements as the rest of the grill.

Known Issues

Despite its tough construction and constant quality regulation, a defective piece might escape the assembly line and find its way into your particular model. This happened in my case and it was the motor.

Take your time as you’ll need plenty of it. And have some patience in stock as well. Just like all fancy gadgets and advanced tech, this one also takes time to master.

Flavor Above All

It’s a Weber and it speaks for itself, more or less. The quality, performance, and size make it one of the best pellet grills not just for searing but for the money as well.

  • Amazing searing performance
  • Large grilling surface
  • Amazing connectivity features
  • Straightforward assembly
  • Cleanup is a breeze
  • Improved smoking performance and flavor
  • It’s a Weber
  • Learning curve
  • Quality control issues

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Traeger Grills TFB89BLFC Ironwood 885 Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker with Alexa and WiFIRE Smart Home Technology

Best for the Money
Traeger Ironwood 885
  • The Ironwood 885 takes it to the next level with precise temperature control
  • Control the grill from anywhere. Alexa technology allows you to do it all by voice
  • 6-in-1 versatility
  • The double side-wall insulation improves temperature consistency and pellet efficiency in cold weather
  • D2 drivetrain

Get the best bang for your buck with the Ironwood 885 by Traeger.


  • Total Cooking Area: 885 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 20 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 165°F – 500°F
  • Dimensions: 53 x 27 x 47 inches
  • Weight: 175 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 years

Endless Possibilities

With a maximum temperature of 500°F, you won’t have any worries about searing.

The dual position smoke/sear bottom grate makes this job even better.

Besides this, its large temperature range enables you to cook virtually anything, including but not limited to:

  • Smoking
  • Roasting
  • Baking
  • Braising

This truly is a versatile and remarkable grill.

Big Cooking Surface for Big Flavor

Although is not as gigantic as the other grills above, it still boasts a 2-story cooking surface that’s 885 square inches in total.

The upper rack is 315 square inches large and the lower one is 570 square inches.

It has the capacity to cook up to :

  • 36 hamburgers
  • 10 whole chickens
  • 7 racks of ribs
  • 9 pork butts

Smart Hopper

The hopper not only holds an entire bag of pellets (20 lbs) but also alerts you through the phone app when the pellets are about to run out.

It also has a trapdoor for quick and easy pellet swapping and/or storage.


WiFIRE® Technology is Traeger’s very own WiFi connectivity that lets you monitor and control the temperature and smoke levels, see how many pellets you have left in the hopper, set the timer, and select thousands of recipes.

You must have at least Android 8.0 or iOS 13.0.

Alexa owners will be happy to know that you can connect her as well.

Experience More Power and More Flavor

What really makes Traeger stand out from the rest is the D2 Direct Drive drivetrain.

This baby is Traeger’s very own version of the drivetrain – the muscle behind pellet grills.

It consists of a durable DC motor, an auger that’s virtually impossible to jam, and a variable speed fan.

The auger and fan are adjusted independently by the controller, improving your BBQ experience.

Saves You Time

The TurboTemp® technology greatly reduces preheating and raises the temperature back after opening the lid much faster than other grills on this list.

Excels Even in Cold Weather

The durable construction isn’t the only thing that lets you cook with this baby during the cold winter times.

The double-wall insulation is also another factor. This feature greatly increases heat retention.

Because of this, you save on pellets.

Infused With Smoke Science

Having more than 30 years of experience, the engineers and designers at Traeger developed their own methods for more accurate and better-tasting barbecues called the Smoke Science Technology.

Every type of cooking you do (not just smoking) greatly improves the taste and juiciness of the food.

Some of the features of this technology include:

  • Improved heat retention and air circulation (Tru Convection® system)
  • Precision control of smoke (Downdraft Exhaust®)
  • Greater infusion of smoke (Super Smoke mode)

There’s Still Some Room for Improvement

The side shelves aren’t enough (at least not for me). A bottom shelf would be nice.

There’s no off button. The first time it was confusing because I wasn’t sure how to shut it off.

Harness Your Searing Potential With the Traeger

There’s nothing it can’t do. It excels at searing. smoking, barbecuing, and grilling which is something many pellet grills can’t do. Combined with many improved technologies and systems, the Ironwood dominates backyard gatherings.

  • Ample cooking surface
  • Versatile
  • Durable
  • Easy to assemble, clean, and use
  • Wifi app works really nice
  • Lightning-fast heat up
  • Small prep space
  • No off button

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PIT BOSS 71820FB PB820FB BBQ Pellet Grill and Smoker

Best for Beginners
  • Flame broiler for open flame searing
  • 820 sq. In cooking surface with porcelain coated, cast-iron main grid
  • Dial-in temperature control with LED readout
  • 180-500 F cooking temperature

New to the world of pellet grilling? Then this Pit Boss is your go-to option.


  • Total Cooking Area: 820 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 18 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 180°F – 500°F
  • Dimensions: 47.91 x 25.28 x 50.24 inches
  • Weight: 141 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 years

Made for Searing

The best way to sear is with a direct flame. It’s not all about the temperature.

Pit boss is fully aware of this and has implemented high-heat direct flame searing with their very own Flame Broiler.

820 Square Inches of Raw Cooking Potential

You can cook up to 35 burgers at once with this one.

The main cooking area is 580 square inches and the upper one (which is removable) is 240 square inches.

The grates in both cases are cast iron covered in porcelain which is what you’d expect.

Fool-Proof Control Board

The main reason why I consider this one beginner-friendly is the control panel.

It’s so easy to understand and use that it speaks all by itself.

Even if you have issues, the manual (p13) breaks it in detail in simple layman’s terms.

Built to Last

Another thing Pit Boss is known for is the quality.

Additional Features

The high temperature range of 180°F – 500°F offers a lot of versatility.

The wheels aren’t made from cheap plastic but are metal like other parts of the grill.

Despite many bits and pieces, the assembly is smooths and straightforward. The same goes for the instructions in the manual (p7).

A Grill Cover Is a Must

Despite its durability, rust can still form, albeit only on the surface.

This is the main reason you need a grill cover.

Another good reason is the leftover pellets. As mentioned in the video, water can find its way into the hopper and auger, soaking and destroying the pellets. The electronics also aren’t a fan of water.

One of the Best Ways to Cook

It works like a charm straight out of the box. It sears just as well as it smokes, making it a versatile backyard companion.

  • Super easy to use
  • Offers direct flame searing
  • High maximum temperature
  • Straightforward assembly
  • Ample cooking surface and prep space
  • Rust-prone

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Green Mountain Davy Crockett Sense Mate Electric Wi-Fi Control Foldable Portable Wood Pellet Tailgating Grill with Meat Probe

Best Portable
Green Mountain Davy Crockett
  • Features Sense-Mate, a thermal sensor that constantly monitors temperature
  • Includes a meat probe, peaked lid for rib racks, convenience tray
  • Weighs 68 lbs. and folds to fits in nearly any trunk, making it the ultimate Tailgating Grill
  • 110V or 12V with adapters for 3 power options

Sear either at home or on the open road, the Davy Crockett has you covered in all cases.


  • Total Cooking Area: 219 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 9 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 150°F – 550°F
  • Dimensions: ‎30 x 15 x 22 inches
  • Weight: 57 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 years

Don’t Let the Small Size Fool You

Pellet grills generally have issues searing.

Portable ones tend to be even more notorious since they need to be as lightweight and compact as possible, leaving little to no room for high-performance and powerful drivetrains that put some serious heat to the meat.

The Davy Crockett is an exception to this case which is quite a rare occasion.

Having a max temperature of 550°F (which exceeds most backyard models, BTW), searing a juicy steak won’t present a problem.

Cook Regardless of Location

One of the coolest things about it is that you’re not limited to the backyard, patio, or deck.

With its compact size, lightweight, and foldable legs you can easily place it in the RV, the trunk of a car, or the back of a pickup truck and cook anywhere you desire: camping, tailgating, concerts, hunting, boating, etc.

You still need electricity to power it, though. Luckily, it has a 12V socket pre-installed so you won’t have to spend extra money on converters.

The sky’s the limit.

Big Enough to Cook 5 Steaks at Once

Compared to other grills on this list, a cooking surface of 219 square inches is laughable.

Keep in mind that others are backyard models and this one is not.

For a portable pellet grill, this is a lot.

Grill Smarter, Eat Better

Easily connect your phone (either an Android or an iPhone) to control and monitor your grill.

The app is not limited to your local WiFi network. If you enable Server mode, you can control the grill from an even greater distance.

You can easily jump to the store or go for a long relaxing walk.

Hopper Specs

The hopper can hold up to 9 lbs of pellets.

Venturi-Style Firebox

The unique design of the firebox makes for increased heat distribution and more efficient combustion, resulting in lower pellet consumption and less waste.

What I Don’t Like About This One

If you’re cooking with the legs folded down, be sure to place something heat-resistant between the grill and the ground. This holds especially true for tailgating.

Kick Your Taste Buds Into a New Dimension

Convenience, versatility, portability, and sheer cooking power are just some of the reasons why I considered the Davy Crockett as one of the best portable pellet grills.

  • 550°F max temperature and direct-heat cooking option
  • Large hopper size
  • Ample cooking surface for a portable grill
  • WiFi control
  • Easy cleanup
  • Good grease management
  • The bottom gets quite hot

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Pit Boss Classic 700 sq. in. Wood Fired Pellet Grill & Smoker

Best Under $500
Pit Boss Classic 700
  • High-temperature powder-coated steel
  • Cooking temperature range 180-500 F
  • Digital control board with LED read-out
  • Porcelain-coated wire cooking grids
  • Innovative flame broiler for direct flame cooking

If you don’t want to spend a fortune on a grill but still want to turn your backyard into a 5-star restaurant, then look no further.


  • Total Cooking Area: 1,075 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 21 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 180° – 500°F
  • Dimensions: 40.75 x 25.6 x 43.9 inches
  • Weight: 211 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 years

Flame On!

This baby kicks ass when comes to searing.

Once it reaches its maximum temperature of 500°F, slide the plate and start searing over an open flame.

A Cooking Gargantuan

Despite its name, it has more than 700 square inches large cooking area.

This is the size of the main bottom rack.

The upper one is 375 square inches.

Once combined, you get a total cooking surface of 1,075 square inches which is more than enough for a group of 4-6 people.

Both racks are made from stainless steel grates coated in porcelain.

Simple and Reliable Controller

Just as the PB820FB above, this one also features a precise monitor that always delivers constant results and is remarkably easy to use.


This grill is made from heavy-gauge steel, making it both durable and sturdy.

The powder coating makes it even more resilient to the elements.

It’s Not All Sunshine and Roses

A front shelf and a chimney would be nice.

Despite its durable construction, rust can still occur, albeit only on the surface. A simple grill cover prevents this.

Best Value per Square Inch

Be it searing or smoking, the Classic handles both and everything in between with consistent results.

  • Flame broiler for direct cooking
  • Enormous cooking area
  • Reliable controller
  • Easy to use and assemble
  • Cleanup is a breeze
  • Lacks a few features
  • Prone to rust

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Grilla Grills – Chimp Tailgater Bundle

Best Under $600
Grilla Grills Chimp Tailgater Bundle
  • Rugged Grill Cover
  • Provides both Low & Slow Smoke AND Hot & Fast Sear
  • Industry leading dual mode PID controller
  • Double wall insulated barrel

A true chimp off the old block. The Chimp is a bigger and tougher version of the Davy Crockett while still remaining portable.


  • Total Cooking Area: 460 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 15 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 180° – 500°F
  • Dimensions: 24 x 37 x 20 inches
  • Weight: 90 lbs
  • Warranty: 2 years

Sears as Well as Many Backyard Models

Despite being portable, it packs quite a punch.

Although it has a lower maximum temperature than the Davy (by 50°F), you can still sear with exceptional results.

Note: the grates and the bacon press aren’t included but you don’t need them to begin with.

Cooking Capacity

You can cook about 15 – 20 burger patties on its total cooking surface of 460 square inches.

As with most grills on this list, it consists of 2 racks, both made from stainless steel rod.

The bottom one is 340 square inches large and measures 22 x 15.5 inches. The upper (removable) one is about half the size (120 square inches) and it measures 22 x 5.5 inches.

Insulated for Increased Efficiency and Juicier Experience

The cooking chamber is additionally insulated.

This not only makes the grill more efficient at retaining heat but also makes it more durable as the walls are thicker.

Built to Last

The entire thing is constructed from heavy-duty steel and is powder coated.

For increased durability, the seams are welded and caulked.

To make it even tougher, they added a grill cover free of charge (otherwise it’s $50).

Set’ n Forget Digital Control System

Full wireless control is just the tip of the iceberg here.

The phone app also allows remote troubleshooting.

It includes a PID controller that’s more precise and reliable than a standard pellet grill controller.

Even if you sneak a peek and open the lid, the TempTamer will quickly restore the temperature back without repercussions.

Safety Features Designed to Increase the Lifespan

If the grill gets too cold (below 150°F) or hot (615°F and above), it automatically shuts itself off and displays the appropriate error message.

This Grills’ Ugly Side

Double check the hopper latch once you close it. In my case, the latch was a bit off-center and loosened over time.

One of the legs had a deep scratch and another one was bent when I opened the box.

The Chimp Is a Champ

Once you try it, you’ll dominate the next BBQ party. Show them that even a chimp can flip a steak!

  • Excellent performance
  • Sturdy and durable
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Precise and efficient temperature control
  • Fuel efficient
  • Indirect cooking only
  • Quality control issues

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ASMOKE AS660N-1 Electric Wood Fired Pellet Grill and Smoker

Best Under $400
  • Ultimate 8 in 1 Pellet grill
  • 700 SQ.IN. Ideal for a large 3-12 group party. Whopping 25.8LBS hopper capacity
  • Innovative Technology
  • No Flare-Ups
  • Heavy duty steel construction with UL Certification, porcelain coated cast iron cooking grids with FDA Certification

If you’re on a really tight budget, try the Asmoke.


  • Total Cooking Area: 700 square inches
  • Hopper Capacity: 25.8 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 180°F – 500°F
  • Dimensions: 52 x 20 x 51 inches
  • Weight: 179 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 years

A Searing Master

You’d expect that a grill with such a low price tag would perform mediocre to bad in terms of searing.

You (just like me) will be mighty surprised.

It offers direct flame searing which some more expensive models don’t have at a surprisingly high temperature.


On its combined cooking area of 700 square inches you can cook up to:

  • 9 whole chickens
  • 8 racks of ribs
  • 6 pork butts
  • 35 – 40 burgers

which should be more than enough for a party of up to 12.

As expected, it features an upper rack and a lower one.

The main grates are 484 square inches large while the upper ones are 216 square inches.

Both grates are porcelain-enameled stainless steel.

Lots of Prep Space

The cooking area isn’t the only thing that’s spacious.

This particular model features a front, bottom, and 2 side shelves (the lid of the hopper counts as one).

Not only that but it also comes with 4 integrated utensil hooks.

Exceptionally Large Hopper

The Asmoke has the largest hopper on this list: a whopping 25.8 lbs.

Takes the Guessing Game Out

The controller is precise, reliable, and easy to read.

It doesn’t have WiFi connectivity, though.

Starter Pack Included

What surprised me the most about this one was the number of accessories included.

These aren’t some shiny trinkets but actual things that come super-handy.

These include:

  • Waterproof Grill Cover
  • Precision Tracking Stainless Steel Meat Probe
  • Heat-Resistant Gloves
  • Tongs
  • Meat Claws

They aren’t cheap, too. If you had to purchase these items separately, you would pay an additional $125.

Model-Specific Issues

Before deciding on this one, I read reports of damaged and/or missing pieces upon arrival. They were right.

The lid had a big dent and a few bolts were missing. I didn’t care about the bolts since I got them in the garage by the pound but the lid was pretty upsetting.

Thankfully, customer support responded immediately with a new one which arrived in just a few days.

A Decent Priced Grill That Delivers Exceptional Results

Despite its flaws, for this kind of money, it doesn’t get better than this.

  • Direct heat cooking
  • High maximum temperature
  • Lots of accessories included
  • Spacious
  • Simple and straightforward assembly
  • High-capacity hopper
  • QC problems

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What to Look For to Get the Best Pellet Grill for Searing

Not every pellet grill is up to the task.

If you don’t want to turn your next grilling session into a disappointment, carefully read what features a pellet grill needs in order to sear properly.

Max Temperature Above 450°F

Searing can be done at lower temperatures but if you want quality steakhouse sear marks, you need a grill that exceeds this temperature.

All of the grills on this list reach at least 500°F.

Direct Cooking Option

Searing is best done cooking on direct heat.

Most pellet grills have a diffuser plate which is just a tilted metal plate that covers the flames, making direct cooking impossible.

You can remove it but do it at your own risk. And check the warranty before doing this so you won’t void it.

Some models feature a removable or semi-removable plate (most commonly called a broiler plate) which ensures direct heat.

Grate Material

Since you need high heat, cast iron is your best bet.

Stainless steel isn’t bad but it’s not as good as cast iron

Searing and Pellet Grills

searing steak on pellet grill

See the tips and tricks below if you want to master the art of searing on a pellet grill.

Can You Sear With a Pellet Grill?

Yes, you can but you need to pick the right pellet grill.

All of the models on this list are capable of searing.

While it’s true that pellet grills are better at smoking than searing, there are exceptions to this case.

The main reason is that they don’t reach temperatures high enough to sear.

To get actual sear marks, you need at least 500°F – 600°F. Most pellet grills have a max temperature of 450°F.

Also, searing is best done using direct heat. This is, again, something that a lot of grills lack.

You can sear on indirect heat at 450°F but the result is not the same. In this case, you’d be best off doing this on the stove or oven.

This video goes more into detail and also compares the differences between direct heat and indirect heat searing.

How to Sear With Pellet Grill

1. Clean Your Grill

A clean grill is a happy grill.

It won’t not only look better but will also perform better.

2. Preheat

Just like you should preheat charcoal and gas grills, you should preheat your pellet grill.

Set the temperature to the max (at least 500°F).

If you have a broiler plate, open it. This not only decreases preheating time but will also give out more noticeable sear marks.

3. Begin Cooking

Place the food on the grates and sear for about 5 minutes (actual time depends on the type of food and thickness) on each side.

Fight the urge to touch otherwise you’ll release the natural juices.

4. Cool Off

Once done, remove the food from the grill and let it rest for about 5 – 10 minutes.

5. Bon Appetit

seared sliced steak

Reverse Sear vs Sear

A common dilemma when it comes to searing is whether you should reverse sear or “regular” sear.

This depends entirely on the type of food you’re planning to sear.

If you want your steak medium or rare or the cut isn’t particularly thick, regular searing is the way to go.

What Is Reverse Sear?

It’s a cooking method where you first slowly cook or smoke food (this usually involves a steak) on indirect heat and then you sear it over direct heat and high temperature.

One advantage this method has over traditional searing is thorough cooking (this especially applies to thicker cuts of meat): the middle will never be raw.

Another is improved taste. The food is juicer and has a nice smokey flavor.

How to Cook a Steak on a Pellet Grill

See this infographic to find out whether you should sear or reverse sear your particular cut.

Tip: the thicker you season the steak, the better the crust


searing beef tenderloin on pellet grill
  1. Season the steak
  2. Preheat the grill to at least 450°F
  3. Place the steak on the grill and cook on each side for about 3 – 4 minutes
    • The internal temperature should be between 125°F and 160°F, depending on how much done do you want it
  4. Remove it and let it rest for about 5 minutes

Reverse Sear

reverse sear tri tip pellet grill
  1. Season the steak
  2. Preheat the grill to 225°F – 250°F
    • 10 – 15 minutes should be enough
  3. Place the steak on the grill for about an hour
    • The internal temperature should be between 105°F and 120°F
  4. Remove the steak
  5. Increase the grill’s temperature to the max (at least 450°F) and open the broiler plate
  6. Sear the steak on each side for about 3 – 4 minutes
    • The internal temperature should be between 125°F and 160°F, depending on how much done do you want it
  7. Remove it and let it rest for about 5 minutes

Pellet Grills Aren’t Glorified Ovens

Pellet grills can sear just as well as gas and charcoal grills.

You just need to be very careful in picking out the right one.

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About Mario 148 Articles
I am the owner of Kitchen Guru Ideas. I've set up this site so I can share my kitchen tips and hacks that have been passed on to me from my parents and grandparents and show you how a wonderful experience cooking is and not just a way to save money. Even in this hectic lifestyle, there is time to prepare and most important enjoy a home-cooked meal.

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