Everyone loves a barbecue, but not everyone has time for the charcoal to reach optimum temperature. No wonder so many people end up with chicken that’s pink on the inside and black on the outside.
The solution? A gas barbecue. They’re ready to cook as soon as you are. On the downside, gas barbecues tend to be more pricey than their charcoal-burning contemporaries. But there are deals to be had and the good ones will last you for many summers to come. We’ve tried and tested a selection; from Bodum’s clever portable Fyrkat to Weber’s top-of-the-range Spirit Premium Gourmet, there’s something for all outdoor chefs.
Beautifully made with really heavy grills, and plenty of space, including a useful cupboard underneath. An optional extra is the charcoal plate which you can load up with charcoal, place over the gas flame to light and then turn off the gas once it is going – so you can cook on gas or charcoal. Napoleon also make built in barbecues that can be hooked up to the main gas supply – no more hideous gas cylinders.
This smart red unit has good solid grills and packs a serious punch, power wise – careful, you’ll want to keep those burners low. It’s got a built in thermometer, a cupboard designed to keep the gas canister in (most manufacturers advise against this) and feels pretty solid to boot.
This might be so lightweight it feels like it came out of a cracker but the burners deliver serious heat, in the centre of the grill anyway – the edges are cooler. The viewing window is a great addition for novice barbecuers (you can watch those peppers blister), and while it probably won’t last a lifetime it’s easy to lift for storage. A bargain if you pick it up at the special offer price.
More of a gas-powered griddle than an traditional bbq, but this is the one recommended by camping expert Josh Sutton, aka the Guyrope Gourmet, and he should know. Ultra transportable and sturdy, it works as a hob as well, and you can put the lid on to do “indirect” low and slow cooking.
Like all Weber products this table-top bbq is a reliable bit of kit and easy to put together. It’s also genuinely portable thanks to the mini gas canister and a construction that is lightweight apart from the good solid grills. Puts on a good show of heat for lid-up grilling as well as fairly low heat for low-and-slow cooking, although with just the one burner you won’t be able to cook indirectly.