The Best Flat Top Grill Reviews of 2021

flat top grill
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There is nothing quite like grilling. Not only do grills allow home cooks to make great food outside, they also can bring people closer together. With all that traditional grills have going for them, they are still somewhat limited in the foods you can prepare on them. I mean, have you ever tried to make scrambled eggs on a grill? Me neither, but I don’t imagine it going well. Flat top grills on the other hand can really open up the possibilities when it comes to outdoor cooking. With an outdoor flat top grill, you can scramble eggs, make pancakes, or make the perfect patty melt. Of course, you can also cook more traditional grill items like burgers and hot dogs.

If you want to get right to our top 5 list in search of the best flat top grill of 2021, here’s a shortlist. If you want to learn more about flat top grills and how to pick the best one for you, continue on!

Best Flat Top Grills of 2021

Best Flat Top Grill Reviews

Blackstone 28 inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle Station – Best Overall Pick

Blackstone has been specializing in flat top griddles since 2005 and has quickly become a leader in the market. As all they make is flat top grills and accessories, they have been able to devote all their time and energy to making some of the best griddles out there. This 28 inch flat top grill from Blackstone is a great option for anyone looking to get their first flat top. It would also be a great option for someone looking to upgrade from a smaller grill. It’s big enough to cook 44 hot dogs or 18 burgers at once, but not too big that cooking for just 2 people is unreasonable.

There are 2 burners each producing about 15,000 BTUs for a total of 30,000 BTUs so you can have 2 distinct heating zones to cook different foods at the same time. The burners are started by an ignition switched powered by just 1 AA battery. The grill itself is powered by a standard 20 pound propane tank that rests nicely on the left side of the grill.

At 75 pounds assembled (without the propane tank), this gas flat top grill can be moved around with ease thanks to the 2 built in caster wheels. For storage, there is one shelf on the left side of the grill and a tray beneath the grill. Clean up with couldn’t be easier with the rear grease management system that allows grease to drip into the dedicated cup. To care for the cook top, make sure to season the griddle before cooking and keep it clean. For best care practices from Blackstone, bookmark this guide.

What we liked:

  • Versatile size great for mid-sized and small sized groups
  • Easy to move around and transport if needed
  • Rear grease management system makes clean up a breeze
  • Powerful burners allow for 2 separate heating zones

What we didn’t like:

  • Only 1 storage shelf
  • Not large enough to cook for big groups frequently

Blackstone 36 inch Professional Grade Flat Top Grill – Pro’s Pick

This 36-inch, 4 burner flat top grill from Blackstone is their flagship product, and for good reason. With the capacity to cook 72 hot dogs or 28 burgers at one time, you could feed a small army with this grill. The expansive 720 square inch cook top is powered by 4 burners each producing 15,000 BTUs. With 4 powerful burners, you can have a few different heating zones to make sure all your different foods are cooked to perfection.

Like the 28-inch option, this grill is powered by a typical propane tank and has an ignition switch that requires 1 AA battery. While this is certainly a large grill weighing 120 pounds, it’s easy to move around thanks to its 4 locking caster wheels. A shelf on each side combined with an under-grill tray give you plenty of storage space while you’re cooking.

What we liked:

  • Large cooktop allows you to cook for 2-20 people at one time
  • Dual storage shelves with a tray provide plenty of storage
  • 4 caster wheels make moving the grill around easy
  • 4 burners provide plenty of heat and heating zone flexibility

What we didn’t like:

  • Not great for smaller spaces

Royal Gourmet Portable 3-Burner Propane Gas Grill Griddle – Portable Pick

Looking to get a flat top grill but short on space? This option from Royal Gourmet could be the option for you. At about 24 inches by 14 inches and 30 pounds, this portable 3 burner griddle can be set up just about anywhere. With 3 burners each producing about 9,000 BTUs each, this grill can produce plenty of heat while still being big enough to have separate heat zones.

The porcelain enamel griddle top is easy to clean with paper towel and just some warm water. The front right size of the cook top has a grease trap which drops right into an easy to remove cup to make sure your grease is safely contained.

This griddle includes a propane regulator to hook it up to a standard 20-pound propane tank. The 3 burners are powered by an ignition switch and have a stainless-steel control panel to keep your grill looking great, no matter where you are.

What we liked:

  • Very portable grill makes it easy to set this grill up wherever you are
  • 3 burners power this 326 square inch cook top to make sure there is plenty of power
  • An easy to use grease tray makes clean up and maintenance super easy

What we didn’t like:

  • As this is a portable grill, you will need to make sure you have a solid surface to cook on
  • Not great for large groups

Cuisinart 22-Inch Round Outdoor Flat Top Grill – Most Versatile Pick

This flat top grill from Cuisinart is a great option for outdoor cooks who don’t have a ton of space but want to have some versatility when cooking outside. With its round design, this gas griddle can be completely covered by the included stainless-steel lid. This allows you to do more than just grill but also steam, bake, and smoke food right in your own backyard.

You can let your grease drip off on any side thanks to a 360-degree grease trap. The grease is then drained right into a removable grease cup for easy disposal. For storage, there is not a ton but there is a tray on the left side of the grill. Right under the tray is a paper towel holder, which will certainly come in handy!

Powered by a 20-pound propane tank, this grill has 2 burners that each provide about 15,000 BTUs each, for a total of 30,000 BTUs. The cooktop itself isn’t huge but certainly not small, with a 22-inch diameter. The grill frame is 44 inches high and about 32 inches wide, so it can fit in most backyards without much trouble. 4 wheels also make moving this grill extremely easy.

What we liked:

  • Versatile grill allows for many cooking styles
  • The shape and size make this grill easy to find a place for. The wheels will also make it very easy to move around your yard
  • 360-degree grease trapping system makes keeping it clean easy
  • Paper towel holder is a great touch to manage any messes

What we didn’t like:

  • Smaller cooking area limits the capacity
  • Circular shape can make having different heat zones difficult

Blackstone Tailgater Portable Gas Grill and Griddle Combo – Camper’s Pick

Ready to get into flat top grilling but not ready to leave the traditional grill behind? We understand and that’s why we had to make sure this gas grill and griddle combo made the list. This combo option from Blackstone combines the best of both worlds in a lightweight and easy to use option.

With 2 burners, 1 for each the grill and griddle, it’s certainly not the highest capacity option. But, it does allow you to use both the grill and griddle at the same time. The griddle portion will provide 15,000 BTUs and the grill section will produce about 20,000 BTUs. Both the grill and griddle are about 16 inches by 16 inches, which will provide plenty of room for a small family but won’t be the best for big groups.

Blackstone wanted to keep this combo grill portable so it’s easy to take to the park, on a camping trip, or to your next tailgate. Because of that, this grill is easy to collapse to fit into the back of your car. On the other hand, there is no built-in storage which can be a challenge if you are short on space.

What we liked:

  • Cook on both the grill and griddle at the same time, for the ultimate grilling experience
  • Easy to move design allows this grill to be brought to events and on camping trips
  • The burners can be used to cook with pots and pans on camping trips by removing the griddle or grates

What we didn’t like:

  • The cooking surfaces are 16 inches by 16 inches, so it’s not great for large groups
  • There are no storage options built into the grill’s frame

What is the Best Flat Top Grill for You?

There is no one size fits all approach to finding the best flat top grill for you. Flat top grills come in many different sizes and have different features. It will be helpful to think about how you will use your new grill before evaluating the options.

The first thing you will want to decide is what size flat top grill would be best for your needs. This will be a combination of a few things. First, how much space do you have for your new grill?

If you have a limited amount of space, you will want to take that into consideration as flat top grills can be quite large. If you are really short on space, you could go with a tabletop option which can be set just about anywhere. Another benefit of the space flexibility of tabletop flat top grills is their portability. Tabletop griddles can easily fit in you car to be brought to your next tailgate, outdoor event, or camping trip. If you have a lot of space, going with a larger option can make sure you always have the space you want while cooking.

Second, how many people will you be cooking for? If you are only feeding a few people, a smaller option should do just fine. If you want to have some extra capacity for more friends and family, the larger options would be better for you.

The next thing to consider is how much prep and storage space you would like to have. If you have the space, bigger is typically better here. It’s better to have space you don’t need than to need space you don’t have! Many of the larger flat top grills will have a shelf on each side in addition to a storage rack beneath the grill. If you don’t plan to have your grill near any other tables or furniture, this storage space is a great way to stay organized as you are cooking.

History of Flat Top Grills

Now that you know about some of top contenders for the best flat top grill on the market, let’s take a step back and see where the flat top grill came from. While flat top grills have become more popular in recent years with home chefs, they have been around for a very long time. If you think back to all the diners you’ve been to, you likely saw your breakfast being cooked on a flat top grill right before your eyes. Did flat top grills become popular with the rise of the diner? It certainly helped, but flat top grills go back much further than that.

Originating in Mexico and Central America, the first flat top grills were made of clay. Once the Spaniards arrived in the Americas and brought steel with them, flat top grills began being made of metal instead and the rest is history. So, if you are getting ready to enter the world of flat top cooking for yourself, just know there is quite a bit of history behind this style of cooking!

How Does a Flat Top Grill Work?

Flat top grills function very similarly to traditional gas grills. They are powered by propane which is used to power the burners on the surface of the grill. The big difference between a flat top grill and a traditional grill is in how the heat comes into contact with your food. Flat top grills channel the heat through a steel plate which cooks the food, while a traditional grill used open flames and grates to cook the food.

The construction of a flat top grill is very similar to a traditional gas grill as well. Flat top grills will have a frame, a propane tank hook up, burners, and control knobs. While the basics will be true among all flat top grills, there are quite a few options within the flat top grill market.

Flat top grills come in many different sizes, ranging in ability to feed a couple people at a time to cooking for a dozen or more.  Most flat top grills have 2 or 4 independent burners, but you can also find smaller tabletop flat top grills powered by just 1 burner or 3 burners. Have more burners will allow you to have multiple heating zones to be able to cook different foods at the same time.

Flat top grills also have different levels of built in surface space to store and prep food on. Larger gas flat top grills will usually have a shelf on each side and a tray beneath the grill for storage.

Wrapping Up

Flat top grills can open up a whole new world of outdoor cooking to aspiring home chefs. We hope our search for the best flat top grill provided a great introduction to the world of flat top grilling. By thinking about how you want to use your new flat top grill, you can pick the one that is just right for you and your family. If you just want to get started and have a decent amount of space, you certainly can’t go wrong with our best overall pick!

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Matt
Matt