Perhaps no brand is as synonymous with pellet grills and smokers as Traeger. The company has been producing premium grills for more than 35 years. Although all of Traeger’s grills are highly regarded for the quality of their construction and digital controls, the company offers a broad range of grills, ranging from smaller tailgating models to behemoths that feature enough cooking capacity to feed the whole neighborhood. Traeger grills also come with advanced grilling features that include Wi-Fi connectivity, turbo heating options, and even features that allow you to infuse more smoke into the meat.
With a variety of options and price points to choose from, finding the right Traeger grill can be a bit of a challenge. This guide examines what features and options to consider when shopping for the best Traeger grill and reviews some of the brand’s top models.
- BEST OVERALL: Traeger Pro 575 Wi-Fi Pellet Grill and Smoker
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Traeger Pro Series 22 Pellet Grill
- UPGRADE PICK: Traeger Timberline 1300 Wi-Fi Pellet Grill and Smoker
- BEST LARGE-CAPACITY: Traeger Ironwood 885 Wi-Fi Pellet Grill and Smoker
- BEST FOR TAILGATING: Traeger Tailgater Portable Wood Pellet Grill
- BEST PORTABLE: Traeger Ranger Pellet Grill and Smoker
- BEST EXTRA-LARGE: Traeger Timberline XL Wi-Fi Wood Pellet Grill
- BEST FOR A SMALL FAMILY: Traeger Ironwood 650 Wi-Fi Pellet Grill
How We Chose the Best Traeger Grills
Traeger grills come in a broad range of price options, so we used a variety of criteria to help you choose the best Traeger grill to suit your needs. With all of our selections, we leaned toward Traeger grills that include features that make it easier to grill or smoke meat, including D2 motors and Wi-Fi connectivity. We also included smaller models that offer around 600 square inches of cooking surface for all-around grilling and smoking needs at an affordable price.
For those who are serious about smoking meat, we included higher-end models that feature at least 800 square inches of cooking space, large-capacity hoppers, and features that make it easier to control temperature and monitor food doneness. Build quality, though an important characteristic of grills, was not a differentiator on our list, as all of Traeger’s grills feature the same durable construction.
Our Top Picks
The list below narrows the field of Traeger grills to some of its most popular models. This list includes the best pellet grills for tailgating, backyard barbecues, and weekend-long smoking efforts.
When considering its host of high-end features, ample cooking surface, and middle-of-the-road price tag, it’s no wonder the 575 has been Traeger’s best-selling grill for years. Its 575 square inches of cooking space is suitable for most grilling needs, while its max temp of 500 degrees Fahrenheit is more than enough to achieve that sought-after char on a steak or burger.
This pellet smoker comes equipped with an ample 18-pound hopper that supplies enough fuel to keep the grill going for up to 9 hours on a single load at high heat. There’s also a handy clean-out feature that makes it easy to change out pellet flavors without having to finish a load. The 575 also includes the best additional features Traeger offers, including a D2 brushless motor and Wi-Fi connectivity.
- Cooking capacity: 575 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
- Additional features: D2 Controller, WiFIRE Wi-Fi technology
- Capable of reaching high temps for searing steaks and burgers
- Includes full slate of Traeger Pro Series features, including Wi-Fi connectivity and a brushless motor
- Large-capacity hopper holds 18 pounds of wood pellets
- Cooking area may not be big enough to handle extra-large smoking jobs
Get the Pro 575 Traeger grill at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
Traeger’s best wood pellet grill for the money may lack some of the premium features found on its higher-end Pro series model, but it matches them in the areas that count. That includes its 572 square inches of cooking surface and an 18-pound hopper, which puts it on par with the Traeger Pro 575. These features make a great entry-level option for beginners to start smoking.
The 22 also has the same build quality as its more expensive brethren with powder-coated stainless steel external parts and a durable set of wheels. While it lacks technologies such as Wi-Fi connectivity and a D2 drive, it does come with Traeger’s Digital Pro controller, which ensures the internal temperature never varies from the set temperature by more than 15 degrees Fahrenheit. Other useful features include dual meat probes that make it easy to monitor the internal temperature of whatever’s on the grill.
- Cooking capacity: 572 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 18 pounds
- Additional features: Digital Pro Controller, 2 meat probes
- Similar-size cooking area and hopper capacity as higher-end grills
- Same build quality as Traeger’s more expensive pellet grills
- Includes Traeger’s Digital Pro Controller for maintaining even temperatures
- Lacks some high-end features found on other Traeger grills, including Wi-Fi connectivity
Get the Pro Series 22 Traeger grill at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
With its sheer size and a bevy of features, the Timberline represents the gold standard of Traeger’s line of pellet grills. Designed for those who are serious about smoking and grilling meat, the Timberline boasts 1,300 square inches of cooking space—more than double the capacity of smaller 575 and 22 models in the Pro Series. The hopper capacity is also notably larger at 24 pounds to handle that large cooking area.
The size of this Traeger smoker isn’t the only thing that sets the Timberline apart from more affordably priced options. This model comes equipped with a powerful D2 motor and has Wi-Fi connectivity as well as a pellet sensor that sends alerts when the pellet level gets low, a built-in cutting board, and a stainless steel front shelf for prepping food.
- Cooking capacity: 1,300 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 24 pounds
- Additional features: Wi-Fi connectivity, D2 motor, pellet sensor
- Massive 1,300 square inches of cooking surface for smoking food
- Includes all of Traeger’s advanced cooking features and then some
- Thicker insulation on the outer walls of the cook box for maintaining consistent temperatures
- Built-in cutting board for prepping food; stainless steel shelf for storage
- Some customers complain that the Wi-Fi connectivity is unreliable
Get the Timberline 1300 Traeger grill at Ace Hardware, The Home Depot, or Traeger.
Though it’s not Traeger’s largest pellet grill, the Ironwood is a significant step up from the company’s other models with 885 square inches of cooking space and a 20-pound hopper. That’s ample room to fit larger hunks of meat, such as a couple of full racks of ribs or a large brisket. As with Traeger’s other high-end grills, the Timberline comes equipped with a D2 motor and Wi-Fi connectivity.
There are also some useful additional features, including a Super Smoke mode, which uses a fan to add even more smoky flavor to meat, and a Pellet Sensor that sends alerts to the app when the hopper is low on wood pellets. A chute on the hopper makes it easy to swap out pellets when it’s time for a flavor change.
- Cooking capacity: 885 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 20 pounds
- Additional features: WiFIRE Wi-Fi technology, D2 motor, Pellet Sensor, Super Smoke mode
- Wide cooking surface can handle large slabs of meat such as a full rack of ribs
- Includes most of Traeger’s premium additional features including Wi-Fi connectivity
- High-capacity hopper holds 20 pounds of pellets, lengthening the time between refills
- Some customers report that paint begins to degrade after a few months of use
Get the Ironwood 885 Traeger grill at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
A portable design coupled with an ample cooking capacity makes this Traeger an ideal choice for grilling and smoking sessions in a stadium parking lot. Though this grill is by no means small, its legs fold up to make it compact enough to fit inside a truck bed or the trunk of an SUV. At 62 pounds, it’s also lightweight enough for two people to carry it. Adding to its portability is an inverter that makes it possible to power the hopper via a car’s accessory outlet.
Though smaller than other Traeger grills, its 300 square inches of grill space is much larger than that of most portable grills and smokers. There are some trade-offs with the Tailgater, however. It lacks the high-end features of Traeger’s other grills, and its 8-pound hopper must be refilled more often.
- Cooking capacity: 300 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 8 pounds
- Additional features: Foldable legs, inverter for car accessory outlet
- Foldable legs and lighter weight make it an option for camping and tailgating
- Pellet hopper can operate via a car battery during portable use
- Larger cooking capacity than most portable pellet smokers and grills
- Does not have the advanced features of other higher-end Traeger grills
Get the Tailgater Traeger grill at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
The compact size of this pellet grill makes this grill/smoker a great companion for camping trips or tailgating outings. While it weighs a hefty 60 pounds, it measures just 21 inches wide by 20 inches deep by 13 inches tall, making it small enough to fit in a car trunk with plenty of room to spare for other luggage. The lid secures to the base for secure transport while large feet provide enough buffer underneath the grill to allow it to sit safely on a tabletop.
Despite its small size, it still has 176 inches of cooking surface, which is large enough for six burgers or a rack of ribs. Its 8-pound hopper is enough to provide up to 8 hours of heat. As with Traeger’s full-size pellet smokers, this portable model includes features that make it easier to cook with, including a digital thermostat and a meat probe.
- Cooking capacity: 176 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 8 pounds
- Additional features: Latched lid, digital thermostat, meat probe
- Can fit inside a car trunk with room to spare
- Latched lid keeps grill contents from spilling out during transport
- Includes same digital controls found on Traeger’s full-size pellet grills
- Small cooking surface limits how much you can cook at one time
- Some customers complain about the grill maintaining a consistent temperature while smoking
Get the Ranger Traeger grill at The Home Depot or Best Buy.
Traeger’s largest (and most expensive) grill offers an expansive cooking surface, two additional burners, and loads of storage space. The main cooking area is divided into three racks that provide a whopping 1,320 square inches of cooking surface, which is enough to smoke 16 racks of ribs, 12 chickens, or 12 pork butts for pulled pork. The hopper can handle 22 pounds of pellets, allowing it to smoke for long periods before needing a refill. Flanking this main cooking surface is an induction burner for searing steaks or preparing side dishes.
The Timberline XL also has other high-end touches, including touch-screen controls, downdraft exhaust, and Traeger’s Super Smoke mode for increased flavor. Storage and prep space abound on this grill. There are multiple shelves, accessory hooks, a roll rack, a storage bin, and a foldable front shelf.
- Cooking capacity: 1,320 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 22 pounds
- Additional features: Induction burner, ample storage and prep shelves, hooks, bins
- Massive cooking surface can support a lot of food at once
- Touch-screen controls make controlling temperature and monitoring food easy
- Induction burner for searing meat or cooking side dishes
- Includes an abundance of storage space and prep surfaces
- Some customers complain of large temperature swings while smoking
Get the Timberline XL Traeger grill at Ace Hardware, The Home Depot, or BBQGuys.
The Ironwood 650 may not offer the expansive cooking surface of some of Traeger’s other models, but it’s ample space for a family of four. Its 650 square inches of cooking surface is enough to hold up to six pork butts.
As with Traeger’s other pellet grills, it features a large 20-pound capacity hopper with high-end touch-screen controls. Built-in Wi-Fi on the hopper allows the chef to monitor and control the Ironwood from a smartphone. There’s also a large side shelf for food prep and a bottom shelf for storage, two wired meat probes, and a grilling light. Four wheels allow it to be rolled into and out of position, making it ideal for smaller decks and patios that may not have the space to give it a permanent home.
- Cooking capacity: 650 square inches
- Hopper capacity: 20 pounds
- Additional features: Meat probe, Super Smoke mode, pellet sensor, Wi-Fi connectivity
- Can connect to Wi-Fi, allowing you to control it via a smartphone app
- 4 wheels make it easy to move around a deck or patio
- Large hopper capacity extends the time between pellet refills
- Some customers complain that the build quality isn’t the same as other Traeger grills
Get the Ironwood Traeger grill at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
What to Consider When Choosing a Traeger Grill
Ahead, learn about the different grills Traeger offers and find out why they are valued for their quality construction and high-tech features.
As a premium grill brand, Traeger offers products that are highly regarded for the quality of their construction. All of the company’s grills are made from solid steel and have a weather-resistant powder-coated finish.
Since most Traeger smokers weigh between 150 and 250 pounds, Traeger uses heavy-duty wheels on its grills, making it easier to maneuver them on a deck or patio.
Inside, the cooking surface consists of porcelain-coated steel, which retains heat better than the stainless steel racks found on other grill brands.
All Traeger grills feature a hopper, controller, and motorized ventilation fans. Traeger’s high-end grills use its D2 Direct Drive, a brushless motor that operates a powerful auger that resists jams, and a multispeed fan that helps produce more smoke in the firebox. The D2 is also able to heat up the firebox faster at start-up and after opening the grill lid.
It’s crucial to consider both the size of the cooking surface and the hopper capacity when shopping for a Traeger smoker. On the small end, Traeger’s portable tailgating grill has about 300 square inches of cooking surface, which is enough to fit three racks of ribs, a couple of whole chickens, or 12 hamburgers. For those who need something seriously substantial, the massive Timberline XL boasts over 1,300 square inches of cooking area, which can accommodate 16 racks of ribs, 12 chickens, or 12 pork butts for pulled pork.
Hopper capacity determines how long the grill can run before the operator needs to add more pellets. It ranges from 18 pounds for smaller Traeger grills up to 24 pounds for its largest models.
Since Traeger’s pellet grills are quite heavy, making them difficult to take on the road, the company does offer a smaller grill for tailgating, which features foldable legs and weighs around 8 pounds.
Traeger grills differ from many standard backyard grills in that they can function as both a smoker and a standard grill. That’s because they can maintain constant temperatures as low as 150 degrees Fahrenheit, which is crucial for smoking, while still reaching the high temperatures needed for searing steaks and burgers.
A pellet grill’s controller operates an auger that pushes pellets into the firebox. Digital controls, standard on all of Traeger’s grills, make it easy to dial in specific temperature settings or monitor doneness via the grill’s electronic meat thermometers.
Additional Features and Attachments
Because Traeger is a premium brand, its pellet grills come with a variety of additional features that expand their functionality. Many of Traeger’s grills have Wi-Fi connectivity, which allows you to control the grill and monitor readings on meat thermometers via a smartphone app. Traeger smokers with the new D2 motor have a Super Smoke mode that intensifies the smoky flavor in meats and a TurboTemp feature that heats up the grill faster.
Tips for Using a Traeger Grill
Traeger smokers are some of the highest regarded grills and smokers on the market. However, using their sophisticated controls can be a challenge, especially for those new to grilling and smoking. First and foremost, it’s crucial to understand that different types of meat require different types of cooking. Familiarize yourself with what you’re cooking and decide whether it makes sense to use the Traeger to grill, smoke, or roast. Traeger grills are an investment, so it only makes sense to load it with the best fuel. Use quality pellets when cooking with your Traeger to achieve the best results.
Use a meat thermometer to gauge when food is done. It’s a much more reliable method than using a timer to determine when it’s time to take the meat off the grill. When using a Traeger, don’t forget about the upper racks, which are a way to cook food with convection heat. When using the Traeger to smoke meat, keep in mind that smoke adheres better to cold meats, so keep your meat refrigerated until it’s time to go on the grill.
- Use the best cooking type for the type of meat.
- Use a meat thermometer to determine doneness.
- Use the upper racks for convection cooking.
- When smoking meat, keep meat refrigerated until it’s time for it to go on the grill.
If you’re wondering where Traeger grills are manufactured or whether you can use the grill in foul weather, then read on for answers to these and other commonly asked questions about Traeger grills.
Q. Where are Traeger grills made?
Traeger grills were manufactured in the U.S. up until 2006, when the company was sold. While Traeger grills are still engineered and designed in the U.S, they are no longer made here. Traeger grills, including its Pro Series, Ironwood, and Timberline grills, are manufactured in China and imported to the U.S.
Q. Do Traeger grills come with Wi-Fi/app support?
Many Traeger grills are equipped with Wi-Fi connectivity that works with the Traeger app, WiFIRE. This app allows you to control the grill and even monitor meat temperature from virtually anywhere via smartphone. The only Traeger grills that do not have Wi-Fi are the brand’s portable grills and earlier models.
Q. Do Traeger grills come with a hopper pellet dump?
Most Traeger grill hoppers are equipped with a pellet dump that allows you to empty the hopper quickly when changing pellet flavors. Newer Timberline grills have a pellet slide under the hopper, while other Traeger models have a pellet door on the back of the hopper. Some Traeger pellet grills require you to scoop unused pellets out of the hopper.
Q. Are Traeger grills weatherproof?
A Traeger grill has a weather-resistant powder coating, making it suitable for use in the rain or even snow. The grill does have electronics; however, they are sealed inside the hopper and therefore aren’t susceptible to damage from rain. It’s a good idea to keep your Traeger grill covered when it’s not in use to prevent rust and prolong its life.
Q. Where is the hottest spot on a Traeger grill?
Hot spots are usually located around areas with the best airflow, which would be near the grill’s chimney or its back vents. While hot spots are normal, extreme hot spots are not and can damage the grill. Using large baking sheets and aluminum foil liners on the cooking grates can block airflow, creating extreme hot spots.
Q. How often should I clean out my Traeger grill?
Traeger says you should clean your grill after every five cooking sessions to make sure it runs properly and lasts a long time. When cleaning your Traeger grill, make sure to clean the grease tray pan, empty the grease bucket, wipe down the grill exterior, and remove any extra ash from the firepot.
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