Best charcoal barbecue 2019: the best classic grills for summer

Large and portable charcoal barbecues to make your summer go with a swing

The best charcoal barbecue is still the most prized by many summer grillers, whatever the merits of gas, pellets and even electric. For the garden, patio, beach or campsite, the best charcoal grills are a great choice, and we've found the best of the best, We’ve rummaged through our more in-depth barbecue guides to pull out the five best garden and travel-friendly charcoal grillers.

• The best gas barbecues shortlist

You'll find much longer reviews to these charcoal grills in the guides below. Dodge the garden centre queues during the summer sales and order from our reputable online retail partners instead. If you like to play a longer game, Black Friday might have some cheap bbqs.

Further reading:

Best charcoal barbecues, in order of preference

Best charcoal barbecue: Napoleon Pro 22K-LEG

1. Napoleon Pro 22K

Best charcoal kettle barbecue

Specifications
Grill size: 22 inches
For: Garden & patio
Reasons to buy
+Adjustable height grill+Lid with offset hinge+Top build quality

• Buy the Napoleon Pro 22 from Amazon for £294

This kettle barbecue fulfils all the criteria of a top-drawer griller: a hinged lid for both indirect and direct cooking, an adjustable-height, cast-iron cooking grate, ash catcher, integral thermometer, foldable grill plates for adding charcoal and four sturdy legs. Say no more.

best charcoal barbecue: Weber Master-Touch

2. Weber Master-Touch

Best Weber charcoal BBQ

Specifications
Grill size: 22 inches
For: Garden & patio
Reasons to buy
+Reliable performer+Extremely durable

• Buy the Weber Master-Touch for £311 at Amazon

The world-conquering Master-Touch doesn’t come with an adjustable height grill or a hinged lid but it will survive a decade of harsh winter storage. It also features Weber’s innovative Gourmet grill insert system – simply remove the centre and slap in the optional wok, pizza stone or poultry roaster. If reliability, build quality and brand kudos are your main prerequisites, then venture no further than this cracking model.

best charcoal barbecue: EVERDURE BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL CUBE

3. EVERDURE BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL CUBE

Best portable charcoal grill

Specifications
Grill size: 10 inches
For: Balconies & picnics
Reasons to buy
+Stylish design+Easy to carry

• Buy the Everdure Cube for £149 at John Lewis & Partners

Looking for a classy portable that’s properly designed for grilling on the go? Try this chic little number from food voodoist Heston Blumenthal. The porcelain enamelled Cube comes with a 10-inch grill designed to prevent sausages from rolling off onto the beach sand and a sealed lid that doubles as a food storage and prep tray. A top-dollar option for discerning guerrilla grillers.

Best barbecue: Argos Charcoal 55CM Kettle BBQ Kitchen

4. Argos Kettle BBQ Kitchen

Best budget charcoal barbecue for families

Specifications
Grill size: 22 inches
For: Garden & patio
Reasons to buy
+Excellent price+Condiments shelf
Reasons to avoid
-Self-assembly nightmares

• Buy direct from Argos for £120

If you’re looking for a very keenly-priced charcoal barbecue that’s extremely well designed and big enough for a party of six, consider this stonking kettle option from Argos. Aside from an ample 22-inch stainless-steel cooking grate and hinged lid with integral warmer rack and thermometer, it also features a unique shelf space for easy access to your preferred range of BBQ sauces and rubs. A great budget barbie for families.

best charcoal barbecue: LotusGrill

5. LotusGrill

Best portable charcoal BBQ for instant grilling

Specifications
Grill size: 12 inches
For: Balconies & picnics
Reasons to buy
+Fan-assisted heating+Almost smokeless+Comes with a carry bag

• Buy the LotusGrill from £150 at Amazon

This fan-powered barbecue creates less smoke than any other model on the market so contemplate nabbing one for the balcony or campsite. The LotusGrill’s battery-powered fan heats up charcoal in less than five minutes while its snap-on 12-inch grill provides enough meal estate for up two – or three at a pinch. Available in seven powder-coated colours.