The best BBQs 2017

From portable-sized to large, charcoal to gas, grills to smokers - we've got all your barbecue needs covered

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Need a BBQ you can carry around? Read on…

1. Weber Q 1200

Best portable gas grill

Specifications
Grill size: 13 inches
Type: Gas
Size: Small
Reasons to buy
+Great construction+Easy gas canisters
Reasons to avoid
-Pricey
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Most professional chefs will choose charcoal over gas but sometimes gas is better, like on a campsite, the local park or perhaps the deck of your yacht.

This highly portable model uses small, easily acquired, disposable camping gas-type cartridges and features a porcelain-enamelled, cast-iron cooking grate big enough for six or more placements, a tall aluminium lid with built-in thermometer, two fold-out side tables and push-button Piezo ignition.

On-trend bonus: it comes in orange, fuschia, green, blue or purple.

2. Everdure by Heston Blumenthal Cube

Best 'basic' portable charcoal BBQ

Specifications
Grill size: 10 inches
Type: Charcoal
Reasons to buy
+Elegant design+Easy enough to carry
Reasons to avoid
-Petite 10-inch grill
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The Cube is the cheapest and smallest model in a sextet of Heston Blumenthal-branded charcoal and gas barbecues that screams style and sophistication

This eminently portable charcoal burner doesn’t sport any groundbreaking technological features because it is, to all intents and purposes, just a square container with a shallow charcoal tray and a steel grill on top. 

However, there are plenty of refined Heston touches here to whet the appetite, including a beautifully molded porcelain enamel interior with walls that are raised about an inch above the grill so sausages can’t roll off and a heat guard fitted to the bottom so it doesn’t scorch grass or ruin the patio table

The firmly secured lid, too, is a clever design flourish since it encompasses both a sealed plastic storage tray with room for a few cuts of meat and a bamboo food prep board. 

So what you have is a proper barbecue that is also properly portable – most of the others in this list, although excellent at cooking, are either a little flimsy, or not actually all that portable once removed from the boot of your car. 

As a result, the Everdure admittedly, only provides enough real estate for a romantic picnic for two, so look elsewhere if you're having a full-on partner-swopping party.

3. LotusGrill

Best ultra-compact charcoal BBQ

Specifications
Grill size: 12 inches
Type: Charcoal
Size: Small
Reasons to buy
+Rapid heating+Incredibly compact
Reasons to avoid
-Messier than a gas option
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Forget faffing about with hairdryers to fan the flames. This award-winning barbie uses a built-in battery-powered fan to get the whole thing up to cooking temperature in three and a half minutes flat, and with no choking smoke in the process. What's more, it'll go on grilling for up to an hour on only a small handful of charcoal.

LotusGrill works by creating a bellows effect that forces cool air over the charcoal, turning it into a raging inferno, albeit a safe one. 

Available in seven cheerful colours and is ideal for small patios, balconies, campsites, picnics and boats, its 32cm grill is good for up to four hungry gannets.

There's also an £89 Fondue Grill Accessory Kit for it, letting you rustle up delicious, 1970s, continental-style cheese-based meals. Deliceux!

Napoleon TravelQ 285

Best for smaller spaces although not actually very portable

Specifications
Grill size: 285 square inches
Type: Gas
Size: Medium
Reasons to buy
+Gorgeous looker+Quality build
Reasons to avoid
-Short gas hose-Too heavy to carry
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This gorgeous powdered blue gas portable comes with two Piezo-operated, jet-fired burners, a clearly labelled lid-mounted thermometer, a pair of fold-out legs for table-top or camp floor use and enough cooking space on its cast iron wavey grill to handle up to 18 hamburgers.

It runs on easily-obtainable disposable screw-thread gas canisters (think Camping Gaz, Coleman, etc) though, with the addition of a longer hose, it can apparently also be adapted for large Patio Gas canisters.

Like the similarly styled Weber Q 1200, the TravelQ grills meats and fish exceptionally well and the heat is easily controlled when flare-ups occur.

This barbie’s perfect for camping trips in the car or caravan and ideal for balconies and small patios. Just don’t entertain the idea of lugging it across a field for a picnic, because it’s way too heavy for that.

3. Cobb Compact CO800

Another excellent portable charcoal option

Specifications
Grill size: 12 inches
Type: Charcoal
Size: Small
Reasons to buy
+Clever heating system+Highly portable
Reasons to avoid
-Slippery grill-Messy to transport
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This is one of the most versatile charcoal-fired mini barbecues on the market and one of the most efficient. 

Invented in South Africa, the sturdy, kettle-style Compact Cobb is a small, portable cylindrical unit that can grill, fry, bake and even roast a whole chicken, albeit a small one. 

Its secret lies in a controlled ventilation system that keeps the briquettes (or Cobb's own proprietary Cobblestones) up to fiery temperature for more than three hours and without any heat being transferred to the BBQ's outer casing.

This particular model comes packaged with an overly slippery Teflon-coated griddle – whoops there goes another sausage – but there are plenty more grilling accessories available. A top buy for alfresco feasters, boaters and glampers.

4. Gentlemen's Hardware Compact Barbecue

A barbecue in a briefcase

Specifications
Grill size: 10 inches
Type: Charcoal
Size: Small
Reasons to buy
+Easy portability
Reasons to avoid
-Not one for families of 12, clearly
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Going on a picnic? You need this natty barbie-in-a-case. 

Picture the scene… You arrive at the riverside looking for all the world like a businessman who's just stepped off the plane, stoop down and open your briefcase to reveal a fully functioning barbecue replete with charcoal tray and stainless steel 16x25cm grill. Only one problem: you forgot the charcoal.

But assuming you do remember to bring the fire-making essentials, this is a nifty little thing.

5. Barbecook Joya

Incredibly simple micro grill

Specifications
Grill size: 10 inches
Type: Charcoal
Size: Small
Reasons to buy
+Very portable
Reasons to avoid
-Very small
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This elegant two- to four-person patio barbie grill brings steak-on-the-stone style personal alfresco cooking to the table top. 

It uses just a simple charcoal tray, a 26cm stainless steel grill and a cup of water to save the table from scorching, so you couldn't exactly call the Barbecook Joya sophisticated, but it cooks food perfectly well.

The Joya's attractive ceramic base remains cool to the touch while guests slap on their own kebabs and steak cuts using the supplied bamboo tongs. A preloaded handful of charcoal gets you started.