Who doesn’t love the thought of barbeque on a pleasant afternoon?
The company of good friends and smoking hot steaks getting ready is all you need for a fun day.
If you are the host to these wonderful occasions, chances are you already have a barbeque grill in your home.
When talking about grills, two names often come up, the Traeger Grill and the Big Green Egg.
A group of people will always go back to Traeger Grill blindly. And there are others who consider BGE grills to be the best choice for preparing delicious steaks.
But which one is better?
Can they even be compared? Which one should be your choice when buying a barbeque grill for yourself?
These are the questions we aim to address in this article. So, take your pencils and start taking notes as we dive into a thorough comparison between Traeger Grill vs. Big Green Egg.
What Is A Traeger Grill?
An example of a wood pellet grill is the Traeger. This machine burns pellets in a central burn chamber with the aid of an auger. Hot metal rods ignite the pellets.
You have to plug in those mechanisms because they run on electricity. A meat thermometer is integrated into the system for precise temperature control.
Pellets need to be filled into the hopper in order for it to work. You can then adjust the temperature via the dial. The temperature can be set to anything from "smoke" to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Smoking meat dates back to the Stone Age when it was used to prepare and preserve meat. Traeger Ironwood is basically unrelated to what cavemen used to smoke.
Everything about these grills is automatic, digital, and virtually foolproof. The automatic thermostat can be adjusted even if you are not at home.
By using WiFi, you can monitor and control your meal on the fly. In the last a thousand years, there has probably been no innovation like this in the world of smokers and grills. You can control your smoker with unprecedented ease with WiFire.
What Is Big Green Egg (BGE) ?
By contrast, a BGE experience is strictly analog. Using an adjustable airflow system, the Japanese Kamado-style grill allows the cook to control temperature precisely.
As a result of its design and materials, it distributes heat evenly and keeps moisture in. A typical charcoal grill is less capable of handling both very low temperatures (150 degrees are possible) and very high temperatures than the Egg.
In eight hours, your brisket will smoke at a temperature of 200 degrees when you begin the process and stabilize the temperature. During that period of time or longer, the temperature will remain even.
Its temperature control system is very unique. You can quite accurately control the temperature using the upper and lower vents.
Getting used to this takes some practice, and it can be annoying when it gets too hot. Despite the lid being off, the ceramic heats up beautifully and hold in heat for a long time, so even with the cover off, the temperature takes a while to return to where one wishes to have it.
Which One Is More Popular Between BGE vs Traeger?
Both of these cookers are outstanding in every way. There are only a few products on the market that are as good as these grills and smokers. The manufacturers stand behind both products and they are both well-built.
Materials and workmanship are covered by a good warranty on the more complex Traeger models.
A limited lifetime warranty is provided by the manufacturer for the materials and workmanship of the Big Green Egg. Accidental breakage is not covered, however.
In the end, what is most important is how you like to prepare your meals. You may find yourself using The Traeger more often than you use The Big Green Egg for its smoky char.
D2 Drive Technology ensures precise fuel measurement and even cooking in the Traeger Ironwood series.
The WiFire technology may seem silly at first, but once you try it, you'll never grill, smoke, roast, or barbecue the same way again.
Traeger Vs. Big Green Egg: Which Grill You Should Use?
Both Traeger Grill and Big Green Egg have different grill machines that are great for barbequing. They share a fair few similarities, but there are many striking differences between the two brands and their designed products.
To understand which one is better for you, let us give you a quick comparison between their different features.
Disclaimer: Since there are many different models out there, it can be hard to pit them up against each other head-to-head. To help you understand the brands easier, we chose the Traeger Grill Ironwood 650 and the Big Green Egg 2XL.
1. Fuel Source
One thing that makes it hard to compare the two products is that they use different sources of fuel. The Traeger Grills are pellet grills that use small hardwood cylinders for fuel with an auger system.
With BGE grills, you are using charcoal which is called a Kamado grill. The advantage of the pellet grill system is that it introduces some wood flavors to your foot.
Besides, using it is also a lot easier since you do not have to maintain the temperature constantly. You can simply walk away when the temperature in the grill has reached the desired level.
With Traeger Ironwood 650, the brand recommends using quality pellets for best results. In fact, Traeger themselves manufactures and sells high-quality pellets that will give you excellent results when used in conjunction with their grill machines.
One issue with using pellets is that they can get ruined if exposed to humidity. Big Green Egg, being a Kamado-style grill, mostly uses charcoal. However, you can still use wood chips or pellets if you want with them.
But you do not want to use any additives such as briquettes or lighter fluid while cooking. Ideally, you want to use the lump hardwood charcoal manufactured by the brand for best results.
As to which one is better, there is no straight answer here. It mostly depends on your cooking preference. We are slightly leaning towards Traeger grills, though, since it is much easier to grill using the Ironwood 650. For beginners, this is the way to go.
2. Heat Retention
How the machine handles heat and maintains temperature is extremely important when choosing a grilling machine. The heat retention capacity of the machine depends on the quality of materials used to make it.
In addition, the lid of the machine also plays a critical role here. When it comes to pellet grills, Traeger Ironwood 650 is no slouch. It features excellent construction and comes with an airtight lid.
The lid even has a double-sided wall for added insulation. So, the heat retention capability of the device is not to be underestimated.
However, it cannot get close to the heat retention capacity of the Big Green Egg 2XL. Thanks to the thick ceramic wall, the heat from the grill will not reach you even if you are standing an inch away from it.
Instead of a traditional lid, the unit uses a gasket system that seals it up nicely to keep the heat and smoke inside. Though both of the units are quite good at heat retention, the Big Green Egg comes out slightly on top.
Once you close it up, it essentially transforms into a clay oven. And we all know how good that is at retaining temperature.
3. Temperature Control
Heat retention and temperature control are two different things. We know that both machines can retain heat. But which one gives you an edge when you want to control the temperature precisely? Consider this factor carefully before making your choice.
Traeger grills come with digital panels that let you precisely set the temperature. You even get a wireless WiFire technology in the machine that lets you operate and control the temperature from a distance.
Though the temperature control is limited to up to 500 degrees, you can activate a “Super Smoke Mode” that smokes the ingredients for better taste.
But the temperature control in a Kamado-style cooker like the Big Green Egg 2XL works differently. You need to adjust the vents to reach the optimal temperature.
So, there is a degree of skill involved in this process. But the upper limit of temperature is much higher. For experienced grill masters, the Big Green Egg might be the better choice because of its ability to reach higher temperatures.
But for a beginner or those who do not want to take the hassle of manually adjusting the temperature, the Traeger Grill comes out on top.
4. Construction Quality
If you want the grill to last, you want to check the overall construction quality of the unit.
Thankfully, both Traeger Grill and Big Green Egg are respectable brands that take the issue of quality control pretty seriously.
That is why both of their products are quite long-lasting. With Traeger grills, you always get high-quality grills made of steel. The lid is mostly made out of stainless steel, and the cooking grates feature a porcelain coating for easy cleanup.
However, since their units feature painted finish most of the time, the heat from cooking can sometimes peel off the paint. Big Green Egg units are typically made of ceramic. However, do not let that fool you.
The thickness of the ceramic practically makes it invincible. Other than that, all the cooking gids in the unit are made with stainless steel. In some models, you will find cast iron grids as an alternative.
When it comes to construction quality, we will hand the crown to Big Green Egg. Because of its thick ceramic construction and lack of paint in its machine, it can handle high temperatures without any signs of wearing.
This does not mean that Traeger Grills are weaker. But Big Green Egg grills are on a whole other level.
The weight of the grill is not exactly something you think about when buying it. However, if you need to move it around from time to time, it is worth checking beforehand.
A heavy grill is harder to move, while a lighter unit will let you move it around whenever you want it. The Traeger Ironwood 650, which we are using as a reference, weigh around 150 pounds.
We know it is not exactly light, but when you compare it to the 375 pounds Big Green Egg 2XL, it is a portable option for backyard barbeque parties.
If weight is a concern and you want to invest in a grill that you can move around with ease, Traeger is a clear winner. But if portability is not an issue for you, Big Green Egg is a great option too.
6. Cleaning And Maintenance
We all love a barbeque, but the cleanup after can be quite daunting. So, it is always worth checking if a unit features any system to make the cleanup easier.
With Traeger Ironwood 650, you get a grease management system that you can remove and clean easily. In essence, this is a drip pail that is attached under the side shelf of the grill.
Besides, the porcelain coating on the grates also makes it easier to clean. Since Big Green Egg 2XL does not come with any porcelain coating, you need to clean them up as soon as you are finished.
You also need to clean the firebox manually after a cooking session. When it comes to clean-up and maintenance, we think that the Traeger Grills are a better choice.
With Big Green machines, you need to be extra careful about your cleanup duties.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Traeger grills: how do they work?
With more than 30 years of experience, Traeger grills are the world's most popular wood-fire grills. Trager's technology uses wood pellets instead of gas or charcoal as fuel. So, you can have consistently hot results and consistently tasty barbecue.
Traeger grills provide you with an even and consistent heat source unlike other grills, such as a charcoal or gas grill. A Traeger grill includes a fan that circulates heat and smoke to provide a steady heat source.
Fuel pellets are fed into the fire in a controlled way by an auger, which uses a screw to move them. A drip tray keeps flames from flying backward, thus preventing them from directly contacting food while heat circulates in the grill.
2. What can you make with Traeger grills?
On a Traeger grill, you can cook a wide variety of meats, poultry, seafood, vegetables, and wild game. The Traeger grill lets you cook all of these foods in addition to frozen chicken right from the freezer!
Choosing a Traeger grill that doubles as an oven can allow more cooking options, including baking whole casseroles or even a chicken pot pie.
Some people prefer the classic barbecue style of flipping burgers and cooking ribs on their Traeger grills. Traeger grills let you cook a wide range of dishes, unlike any other grill.
3. What other grills are similar to Traeger grills?
Traeger grills are basically pellet grills. There are many pellet grills on the market that are lower priced than Traeger, though this style of the grill has become synonymous with the brand.
There are a few great alternatives to pellet grills. If you're concerned about investing $800 or more in a pellet grill, you are sure to find some great alternatives at a lower price point.
4. What makes Big Green Egg Grills so unique?
East Asia's Big Green Egg paved the way for the popularity of a particular type of grill. The "kamado" grill was discovered by American soldiers in World War II, and they became enamored with its unique features.
Unlike traditional charcoal grills that require more maintenance at certain temperatures, the Big Green Egg's predecessors were commonly used for several types of cooking.
Instead of cooking meat inside the grill, the grill was capable of cooking rice inside while simultaneously grilling the person's choice of food.
Ceramic grills aren't just versatile, as they can reach impressive heat levels with whole-body stability and remain there. In fact, the meat turns out to be much more flavorful and tender thanks to charcoal.
As you can see, both Traeger Grills and Big Green Egg grills are admirable brands that produce high-quality machines. Whichever one you go with; you are sure to have a good experience.
If you are a beginner, though, we would recommend going with Traeger grills because of its lower learner curve. We hope our head-to-head comparison between Traeger Grill and Big Green Egg could help you understand which brand is the one for you.
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