The Traeger Timberline XL Can Make Anyone a Grilling Pro
Although the Timberline XL is pricey, it may very well be the only grill you’ll ever need. Check out our review to find out why.
My husband and I love to host. Ours is the house everyone loves to come to for barbecue in the summer, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Along with that comes the expectation of good BBQ meals. I have to admit that my husband handles the grill, so he was on hand from start to finish to help me with this review. I, on the other hand, am the researcher, and I studied many, many grills before settling on the Traeger Timberline XL.
Before purchasing the Timberline, we would use our handy Weber Original Kettle charcoal grill. We found that being able to slow cook on that grill gave us the most tender results. When we decided to switch to a larger unit, the Traeger Timberline XL ticked all our boxes: We wanted a larger grilling surface and the ability to smoke meat over long periods of time along with the versatility to be able to grill up a quick meal. The Traeger Timberline is definitely an investment, but is it worth it? Read our review below to find out.
Traeger Timberline XL Pellet Grill: At a Glance
- Fuel source: Pellets
- Temperature range: 165 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
- Dimensions: 51 inches tall by 71 inches wide by and 25 inches deep
- Large cooking area with a 1,320-square-inch grilling surface, induction cooktop, and 3 tiers of stainless steel grates
- Pop-And-Lock (P.A.L.) magnetic accessory rail and hooks on the front of the grill allow for customization based on cooking needs
- Internal cook light is bright enough to illuminate the cooking surface day or night, which is handy when tending meat that needs to smoke for 12+ hours
- Retails for $3,799, which may be may be more expensive than other pellet grills depending on features and size
- Although the Traeger app allows for hands-free monitoring and controlling, it can be glitchy and difficult to connect
Get the Traeger Timberline XL pellet grill at:
What is the Traeger Timberline XL Pellet Grill?
The Traeger Timberline XL is a high-end pellet grill in the Timberline line of products. The XL is packed with features and is built-in adaptable for those who want to integrate it into an outdoor kitchen.
The grill offers 1,320 square inches of grilling space, along with an additional induction cooktop for searing, sauteing, and more. The wide temperature range of 165 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit allows users to cook a variety of meals, including meats, seafood, and veggies. The unit is Wi-Fi enabled and comes with two MEATER wireless meat thermometers that allow the user to easily monitor the temperature of meat from a phone via Bluetooth.
Some other features of this powerhouse include three tiers of stainless steel grates, a pellet storage bin, a bottom storage cabinet with wood shelving, an internal cook light, side shelves, and a removable magnetic bamboo cutting board.
The Timberline is equipped with an advanced pellet system that includes a sensor to notify the user when the pellets are getting low. It also has a convenient system to clean out the hopper and a StayDRY pellet storage bin.
How easy is the Timberline XL to set up?
Our local Ace Hardware store offered free assembly and delivery, so the Traeger came already assembled and delivered to our front door. The Timberline measures 51 inches tall by 71 inches wide by 25 inches deep—it’s not a small unit. It also weighs 289 pounds, so it took two people to move the grill to the back deck. Once it was placed, we had to load the hopper with pellets and plug the grill into an outside outlet. It’s important to note that the Timberline XL uses electricity to power the auger that feeds the pellets and the fan that circulates heat and smoke. We have an outlet on the back deck, so it was easy enough to position near the outlet for consistent power. Additionally, when choosing where to position the Timberline, it’s important to leave some space around the unit to allow for smoking.
Once powered on, the Timberline XL touch screen walks the user through the setup process. The first step is to start the seasoning process, which takes 60 minutes. After the seasoning process is complete, the touch screen moves to the connection process.
This smoker is Wi-Fi enabled, which is incredibly useful when you’re smoking meat throughout an entire day. The connection process was extremely simple once we’d downloaded the Traeger app. After we followed the on-screen prompts, our phone was connected to the Traeger in less than 5 minutes.
Is the Traeger Timberline XL easy to use?
Once the Timberline XL is seasoned, it is ready to use. We wanted to kick off our testing with something easy. We decided to try some of the recipes that are offered in the Traeger app, so we started with two dozen chicken wings. After allowing the Traeger to preheat to the desired temperature, which took about 20 minutes to reach 180 degrees Fahrenheit, we placed the wings on the bottom grate and spread them out evenly. We closed the lid and let the wings cook for about 90 minutes. During the 90 minutes, we noticed that the temperature fluctuated a few degrees every so often. When the temperature would dip below the preset 180 degrees Fahrenheit, the Traeger would automatically feed more pellets and increase the temperature.
Following the steps within the recipe, we were left with juicy, smoky, and crispy chicken wings. Our chicken meal was a success! We were incredibly impressed with how easy the Traeger Timberline was to clean. The stainless steel grates are quite heavy, alluding to their quality, and the stainless steel was easy to wipe clean. I was expecting to have to use some elbow grease to clean them properly, but I was pleasantly surprised when minimal scrubbing was needed.
After that, we wanted to test out the Timberline’s long-term smoking capabilities so we decided to make a rack of ribs. Once again, we decided to follow a Traeger recipe, which did not disappoint. We followed the recipe directions and were left with delicious smoky, fall-off-the-bone ribs. The remnants of this meal were baked onto the grates for hours, so I expected cleaning to be a chore. Once again, I was incredibly surprised at how easily the grates wiped clean.
In between our long-duration smoking tests, we also made some quick dinners including hamburgers, chicken breasts, and even pizza. During our chicken test, we also sauteed peppers and onions on the induction cooktop. Our pizza test may have been my favorite, and we loved the crispness of the crust. It was a warm night, so the ability to cook the pizza on the grill rather than heat up the oven and make the house warmer was a bonus. At this point, we had used the grill for about 16 hours total, and it was time to add more pellets.
After adding some more pellets and filling the hopper, we decided to smoke a pork butt, once again following a Traeger recipe. This was our longest test, as it required the pork butt to smoke for 9 to 12 hours. We started the test early in the morning, prepped the pork, set the temperature, and monitored it on the Traeger app. We had some running around to do, so we really wanted to test how well the app could keep us informed. The app did not disappoint; it kept us up to date on the pellet level, overall grill temperature, probe temperature, and time remaining. We found this information to be really helpful while we were out running errands, and we were able to see when it was time to head back home to refill the pellet hopper.
Once again, this recipe did not disappoint. We added a bit more seasoning, but that’s personal preference. The instructions were clear and resulted in a tender, fall-apart roast.
Is the Traeger Timberline XL worth the money?
Undoubtedly one of the most important questions regarding the Timberline XL is whether it’s worth the money. With a retail price of over $3,500, the Timberline XL is quite the investment, which is a consideration when choosing the right pellet grill. After using the Timberline XL consistently for over a month and making 15+ meals, we found the quality and performance holds up to Traeger’s reputation. If you’re looking for a higher quality and higher range pellet grill, we do think the Timberline XL is worth its price. However, if that price tag is a bit too steep for your finances, the Traeger Pro is also a great choice and retails around $799.
The Timberline XL is truly an extension of the kitchen. It offers amazing grilling and smoking power along with the ability to sear and cook on its induction cooktop. We took multiple trips to our local hardware stores to compare the build quality of the Timberline with other smokers, and we could not find a single smoker that was built as well as the Traeger.
Should you buy the Traeger Timberline XL?
If you’re a grilling enthusiast looking to upgrade your current setup, the Traeger Timberline XL may be a good choice for you. The Timberline XL is a powerhouse and can tackle most, if not all, grilling needs. We have no doubt that this grill will last for years to come. If you’re just starting out with grilling and aren’t ready to dive into a large purchase, you may want to consider one of Traeger’s smaller grills or smokers to start.
Where to Buy the Traeger Timberline XL
Get the Traeger Timberline XL pellet grill at:
Meet the Tester
Stephanie Cronk brings more than 15 years of retail and digital publishing experience to the Commerce/Product Reviews team as executive editor. Her experience spans many industries in the commerce world, and her primary focus is on buyer’s guides and tested-product reviews.