Z Grills vs Traeger Pellet Grills – Head To Head Comparison Of Two Premium Brands

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In this article, we compare two of the top pellet grill brands available so that you can find the best brand out there. Of the two brands we compare, these are the top Traeger and Z Grills pellet grills to buy in 2021:

  1. Best Premium Pellet Grill: Z GRILLS-700D3
  2. Best Budget Pellet Grill: Z GRILLS-450APRO
  3. Pellet Grill With The Most Features: Traeger Timberline 850
  4. Pellet Grill With The Largest Cooking Area: Z GRILLS-1000D

Top Z Grills Pellet Grill Reviews

Below we’ll review four of the top Z Grills pellet grills.

Z GRILLS-450APRO

Z Grills-450APRO Pellet Grill Key Features
Z Grills-450APRO Pellet Grill Key Features

Z Grills will do all the hard work for you once you have set it to the ideal temperature using digital temperature control. There is no more need for labor-intensive startups. Enjoy the cooking and savor the results!

Construction

The sturdy steel construction is designed with a powder coat finish that is high-temperature resistant, making this wood pellet grill smoker long-lasting. It will bring you years of the best wood-fired grilling. An all-weather cover is also included to shield your grill against the sun and snow.

Temperature Range

Cook any way you want. This product is excellent for smoking, grilling, and everything in between. It has a temperature range of 180°F to 250°F.

Cooking Space

This pellet grill is designed for small families but is big on flavor. It features 452 square inches of surface cooking.

Pellet Hopper Size & Capacity

It provides 20 pounds of hopper capacity.

Warranty

The standard z grill warranty is a 3-year warranty.

Extra Features

This model includes a wireless grill thermometer. You can utilize this thermometer with an app. It helps you monitor the doneness of the food and notifies you on your smart device once it has reached the ideal temperature for serving.

Pros:

  • Effortless to use and clean
  • It comes with a digital auto temperature control and a real-time LED display
  • Corrosion-resistant for a longer-lasting grill

Cons:

  • Some customers complain that the pellets fail to drop.

 Z GRILLS-700E 

Z Grills-700E Pellet Grill Key Features
Z Grills-700E Pellet Grill Key Features

This is one of the best-selling wood pellet grill smoker models of the Z Grills line due to its extreme ease of use and time-tested reliability.

Construction

It is engineered with heavy-duty steel construction and is built for the long term.

Temperature Range

The temperature ranges from 180°F to 450°F. It has a dial-in digital control with an LED display, making it effortless to adjust cooking from low and slow to fiery and swift.

Cooking Space

This pellet grill is designed for small families, yet the results are super flavorful. It is just the right size for small households. It features 694 square inches of surface cooking.

Pellets Hopper Capacity

It provides 20 pounds of hopper capacity.

Warranty

It has a 3-year warranty.

Pros:

  • Roomy storage
  • Easy cooking, even for beginners
  • Specially designed waste oil collector

Cons:

  • Sometimes it’s hard to warm up.

Z GRILLS-1000D

Z Grills-1000D Pellet Grill Key Features
Z Grills-1000D Pellet Grill Key Features

This is the most effortless and most flavorful way to grill. Simply set the temperature of the smoker at the push of a button. The grill will maintain optimum temperatures for consistently smoked results.

Temperature Range

It has a temperature range of 180° to 450°F. It is incredibly versatile. You can braise and chargrill as well as barbecue food all on the same grill!

Cooking Space

This grill is large. It has a massive total of 1,060 square inches of cooking surface area. As a result, it provides more than enough room to cook for a huge crowd.

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It provides 20 pounds of hopper capacity.

Warranty

It has a 3-year warranty.

Extra Features

This grill has a side shelf that is a sturdy and reliable area for prepping meats. The enclosed cabinet gives you storage space for extra racks, tools, and many other things. It makes for an optimal grilling experience.

Pros:

  • Utilizes one-button startup temperature control to mitigate the use of a starter fluid
  • Heat is maintained within 10° of the set temperatures
  • Eradicates the need for a rotisserie since it has a versatile environment for grilling

Cons:

  • You might encounter a few issues in maintaining temperatures.

Z GRILLS-700D3

Z Grills-700D3 Key Features
Z Grills-700D3 Key Features

With dual internal temperature probes and a colossal LCD controller, you can see the precise temperature of two types of meat simultaneously without having to open the lid. There is no guesswork and no overcooking. You can smoke meat tenderly and perfectly every time!

Construction

Enjoy a superior build quality with this product. It provides a reliable, high-quality design and is engineered for years of incredible and effortless cooking. It utilizes a heavy-duty steel construction with a stainless steel lid as well.

Temperature Range

It has a temperature range of 180°F to 450°F.

Cooking Space

Cook as much food as you want with its spacious 697 square inch cooking area.

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It has a 20-pound hopper capacity.

Warranty

A 3-year warranty backs this product.

Extra Features

Cleaning and maintenance are effortless with the hopper cleanout feature.

Pros:

  • The porcelain-coated grates prevent the meat from sticking.
  • The storage base cabinets provide sufficient space for pellets and tools.
  • The internal temperature sensor keeps the heat consistent.

Cons:

Top Traeger Pellet Grill Reviews

Below we’ll review four of the top Traeger pellet grills made.

Traeger Pro 575 Wood Pellet Grill

Traeger Pro 575 Wood Pellet Grill

Your cooking skills will be taken to the next level with this Pro 575 Wood Pellet Grill from Traeger. It provides precise temperature control, rugged all-terrain wheels, and a more robust body. The Pro series from Traeger can tackle any grilling task.

Construction

It is constructed with powder-coated steel.

Temperature Range

The temperature can be set as low as 180°F and then be cranked up to 450°F.

Cooking Space

The total grilling area is 572 square inches.

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It has a large-capacity hopper that can hold up to 18 pounds of hardwood pellets at once.

Warranty

The standard Traeger warranty is a 3-year warranty.

Extra Features

Additional features include storage hooks for extra grilling, racks, a sawhorse chassis, and bars in the side of the barrel that will allow you to move the grill to your outdoor area effortlessly. Extra maneuverability with large all-terrain wheels helps the grill roll with ease.

Pros:

The meat probe allows you to cook with perfection.

  • It heats up fast and puts out better quality smoke.
  • The porcelain grill makes it easy to clean.

Cons:

  • Quality control issues are encountered with the hot rod.

If you are going to compare the Traeger pro 575 vs z grill, well this one is in the bag for Traeger.

Traeger Ironwood 885 Wood Pellet Grill

Traeger Ironwood 885 Wood Pellet Grill Key Features

Level up your craft with this pellet grill! Cook a wide variety of foods and enjoy more versatility. One of the best things is that the bottom cooking grate can be lowered for searing steaks and raised for grilling.

Construction

This Traeger grill is engineered to beat the competition from the ground up with its solid sawhorse style build. Its wheels are designed for all terrains. Also, it has heavy-duty locking casters and a black powder coat finish.

Temperature Range

The temperature can be set as low as 165°F and be cranked up to 500°F.

Cooking Space

Enjoy a massive cooking area of 885 square inches.

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It has a large-capacity hopper that can hold up to 18 pounds of hardwood pellets at once.

Warranty

A 3-year warranty backs it.

Extra Features

It has a mode for keeping it warm, which allows you to know when the food is ready. It also has double sidewall insulation for optimum temperature control.

Pros:

  • It heats up fast and puts out better quality smoke.
  • Food is cooked to perfection by utilizing the digital meat probe.
  • Double sidewall installation enhances the temperature consistency and efficiency of the pellet.

Cons:

  • The application is not compatible nor current with either Apple or Android.

Traeger Timberline 850

Traeger Timberline 850 Key Features

The Timberline Traeger grill 850 allows you to grill a wide variety of food simultaneously. Enjoy versatility with a massive cooking area as well as three levels of steel cooking grids.

Construction

The Timberline is undoubtedly superior with its rock-solid build. It has all-terrain wheels as well as a heavy-duty locking caster. It is finished with a black powder coating.

Temperature Range

The temperature can be set as low as 165°F and then be set as high as 500°F.

Cooking Space

Grill a whole lot more with a massive 850 square inches of cooking space with three tiers of adjustable stainless-steel cooking grates

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It has a vast 24-pound capacity hopper which features a sensor control to monitor fuel levels and sends a signal when it is running low.

Warranty

It has a 3-year warranty.

Extra Features

You can cook numerous meals in one go. Get smoky flavor thanks to the TRUE convection system and the Traeger downdraft exhaust system, which fully circulates fresh blue smoke utilizing a built-in induction fan.

Pros:

  • Manufactured utilizing the highest quality materials.
  • Engineered to last for years
  • Locking caster wheels

Cons:

  • No negative reviews so far

Traeger Tailgater Portable Pellet Grill

Traeger Tailgater Portable Pellet Grill Key Features

The Tailgater Traeger grill provides convenience and rich flavors of wood burning from the pellet grill in a compact, easy-to-travel size.

Construction

It has a powder-coated steel construction.

Temperature Range

Sear to perfection and set temperatures from as low as 180°F up to 450°F.

Cooking Space

It provides 300 square inches of porcelain-coated cooking surface, which offers excellent sear marks while being effortless to clean.

Pellet Hopper Capacity

It can hold up to 8 pounds of pellet at once.

Warranty

It has a 3-year warranty.

Extra Features

It features foldable legs that offer optimum portability, allowing you to quickly position the grill on the bed of your truck or in the back of your SUV.

Pros:

  • Utilizes advanced grill logic
  • Can be set at increments of 5°F temperature
  • It comes with a meat probe.

Cons:

  • Some customers claim the fan doesn’t blow and the rod doesn’t heat up properly.

Complete Brand Comparison – Z Grills vs Traeger

Z Grills Brand Overview And History

Z grills were introduced in the market back in 2017- thanks to the highly successful Indiegogo campaign that raised almost $500,000 from 1,400 investors. The idea was straightforward – to bring a solid pellet grill to the market that uses proven technology but at a lower price point.

At that time, there wasn’t an affordable pellet grill in the market. Although there were some brands, they did not perform well. Z Grills aims to fill this demand, and most will agree that they have done an excellent job at it. Even with only a couple of years of history, they already have a firm foothold as one of the most trusted brands when it comes to grilling.

Z Grills offer high-quality grilling at affordable prices. This is precisely why their grills are consistently rated as a bestseller across every online platform.

Traeger  Grill Brand Overview And History

When it comes to brand history, the Traeger grill presents a contrast to that of Z Grills. Traeger has been around a long time and claims to be the original pellet grill developed, patented, and produced during the middle of the 1980s. Their grill resembled the barrel style of traditional smokers. However, they switched up the offset box with a hopper for wood pellets.

At that time, wood pellet grill technology was brand-new, and Traeger grills were the first to design a grill around this concept. They discovered a way to effortlessly feed the wood pellets from the upper via a rotating auger and into the fire pot to cook the food.

During the 80s, wood pellets were a revolutionary way to cook food. They allowed you to grill or smoke foods utilizing wood-fired flavor. It mitigated the hassle of managing the fire. Effortless use allowing people to make delicious food without hassle was the main selling point of wood pellet grills.

For years, the Traeger grill was the front-runner in the pellet grill market until the middle of the past decade, when their patent expired. However, they are still considered a leading innovator in the industry, and they make high-quality grills, but now they face stiff competition.

Z Grills vs Traeger Pellet Grills – What You Should Know Before You Buy 

Both brands provide premium features without emptying your wallet. As a result, it is possible to enjoy a grilling experience at a fair price.

The following are the most popular features Z Grills and Traeger offer and how they stack up to each other.

Price Point

Without a doubt, price point is a critical factor for any big purchase decision. However, the price department is where Z Grills stand out from Traeger.

Z Grills

The main aim of Z Grills is to create an excellent pellet grill that is affordable. So far, they have done an incredible job of providing fantastic bang for your buck. In addition, you get many benefits, such as cooking surface area per dollar, when looking at the product line of Z Grills.

Traeger

Although Z Grills top this category, this doesn’t mean Traeger isn’t reasonably priced. On the contrary, Traeger prices their grills reasonably compared to other grills made, and you get fantastic value.

Temperature Control

When it comes to critical features for a pellet grill, temperature control is a top consideration. A temperature that is consistent and precise goes a long way in your ability to make incredible food, and your grill should be engineered in a way that allows for you to count on your temperature being correct.

When it comes to comparing temperature quality, different aspects must be looked into. First off, we look at how well the grill is designed and constructed and which materials were used. It directly impacts how well the grill will be able to manage and retain the heat and distribute it consistently while cooking.

Secondly, we will look at how precisely it can set the dial’s temperature control. It is vital for smoking meat. Your goal is to put your temperature down to the smallest increment possible.

Z Grills

Z grills are engineered from solid stainless steel material for the body as well as the cooking chamber. It provides a rust-resistant surface. Customer feedback for various Z Grill products rarely had complaints about retention of heat. On the contrary, their products do a fantastic job of retaining heat, and actual temperatures are typically within 5°F of the chosen heat levels.

For precision, Z Grills can be set at increments of 25°F, which is acceptable. However, it would be ideal to see a bit more accuracy when choosing the temperature.

Traeger

Traeger grills also do an incredible job of retaining heat and are fortified with two stainless steel layers for insulation of the cooking chamber. As a result, it will be challenging to find Traeger customers with issues with how the grill manages and retains heat.

When it comes to precision, Traeger grills can be set at increments of 15°F, which is a definite improvement. Although it may not sound much better, an extra 10°F in-between temperature setting levels make a huge difference. So you can get a little more precise with the Traeger brand.

Although both brands do a fantastic job of providing steady heat to cook, Traeger has a decisive advantage in precision heating. So if you are the type of cook who prefers ultimate control over your ingredients, you might lean towards Traeger in this category.

Temperature Range

Pellet grills are famous for their versatility. They are incredible as a grill, smoker, and all-in-one cooker. A wide temperature range is a critical feature for most pellet grills to perform every cooking style.

A majority of meats smoke at temperatures around 200°F to 250°F. Therefore, searing temperatures ideally should be at 400°F. At a bare minimum, an ideal pellet grill should maintain a temperature range of 200°F to 400°F.

Z Grills

Z Grills have a temperature range of 182°F to 450°F, which is better than most pellet grills in the market. In addition, z Grills provide an extra 50°F of heat. If you are similar to most cooks, the additional temperature range can come in handy when looking for the perfect sear.

Traeger

Traeger pellet grills have a temperature range of 180°F to 400°F, which is without a doubt a reasonable range, but a little more limited compared to Z grills.

Cooking Area

One of the first questions you should ask yourself before purchasing a grill is how many people you plan to cook for regularly. The answer to this will largely dictate the type and size of grill you should buy.

When comparing Traeger grills and Z Grills’ cooking surface areas, we should factor in the robustness of each brand’s offerings. Do they offer a variety of grill sizes to suit different needs?

Z Grills

Z Grills offer standard grills at a range of 450 to 1000 square inches of cooking surface area. Each of these grills also has a warming rack which gives additional cooking space to work with. As a result, z Grills offer a more robust selection for standard size grills and provide excellent choices for large capacity grills of up to 1000 square inches of primary cooking surface.

Traeger

Traeger’s top-of-the-line grills, which are their pro series, come in two sizes. The first is 575 square inches of cooking surface area, and the other is 780 square inches of cooking surface. They also offer other grills that have exciting sizes. For example, they have the renegade probe, which has 380 square inches of cooking surface.

Traeger has incredible choices when it comes to the smaller end of the spectrum. Their small-sized grills, as well as portable pellet grills, are fantastic choices for taking wood-fired flavor on the go.

Hopper Capacity

One of the most underrated features when it comes to comparing pellet grills is the hopper capacity. It should be noted that size matters here. It is a hassle to constantly have to refill your hopper, especially when you are smoking foods that you must smoke for 12 or more hours at a time.

Because of this, you must consider how big your grill’s hopper is. Overall, most pellet grills burn around one to two pounds of wood pellets each hour. When grilling on higher temperature levels, the burn rate is quicker, and when smoking at lower temperatures, the burn rate is slower.

Z Grills

The hopper capacity of Z Grills varies based on the size of the grill. Smaller units feature 10-pound hoppers, whereas some of the bigger grills have a 20-pound capacity.

Traeger

Overall, Traeger’s pellet grills have a hopper capacity of nearly 80 pounds except for their smaller portable line of grills, which will only have an 8-pound hopper capacity.

Traeger’s pellet grills have a huge hopper capacity compared to most of the corresponding Z Grills models. Because of this, you will be less hassled refilling Traeger’s hoppers.

Warranty

Customers will always pay critical attention to the terms of the warranty coverage for a grill. Not only does the warranty protect your purchase, but it is often an indicator that the underlying product is high-quality. If a brand has manufactured a high-quality product, they wouldn’t be afraid to back them with a warranty.

Warranties of Z Grills and Traeger are almost comparable. Both cover a period of up to 3 years after purchasing, and the fine print is nearly identical. As a point of reference, 3-year warranties are pretty standard for a high-quality pellet grill.

Extra Features

Both brands equip their models with unique features that provide functionality you may not have thought of. In addition, Z Grills and Traeger have offerings in this category.

  • Z Grills

Although pellets will be burning cleanly, eventually, ash accumulates at the bottom of the grill and will harm the grill’s performance. Z Grills are designed for easy clean-up as long as you regularly vacuum the inner firebox with a vacuum cleaner.

  • Traeger

Traeger has a Pro series that has larger sizes. In addition, they equip this line with incredible new technology, known as Downdraft exhaust and TRUE convection, to help optimize cook times. It also comes with super smoke mode, which allows you to push a button and ramp up the smoke production.

Z Grills vs Traeger – Who’s The Winner?

So, how do z grills compare to Traeger?

It is not an exaggeration that a comparison between Z Grills and Traeger is a close call. Unfortunately, there seems to be no clear winner simply because the best pellet grill will come down to your requirements and preferences.

For example, if you are looking for a portable pellet grill, the clear choice would be Traeger. Also, if you have a bit of cash within your budget, Traeger will provide a few extra features compared to Z Grills that might be worth the buy.

On the other hand, if your goal is the best value, it is unquestionably Z Grills. It is impossible to find a better value-for-money product when you shop in the market. As long as you’re fine without having extra features, Z Grills are an incredible choice.

But Traeger enjoys more loyalty since they are the original and have been around for years. So if you care about branded names, Traeger is your choice. Traeger also has a solid history of delivering high-quality products to its customers. For sure, Z Grills are the new players, but they haven’t earned their reputation and popularity for no reason.

Z Grills vs Traeger Comparison Chart:

 

Traeger vs. Z Grills Pellet Grills Brand Features Comparison Table
Z Grills vs Traeger Pellet Grills Brand Features Comparison Table

Some Tips To Follow When Purchasing A Pellet Grill

Mechanism 

A pellet grill smoker works via heating a chamber where the air circulates. Pellets such as charcoal and hardwood burn at the bottom of the cooking chamber. This part is sometimes called the burn pot or firepot. The food is placed on the grill grate on the top of the chamber. When fuel is running low, additional wood is placed from a pellet hopper located on top of the cooking chamber. These pellets are pushed down the chute and right into the middle of the chamber.

Airflow controls the temperature setting on the pellet smoker. Heavy-duty fans close to the bottom of the unit suck air into the lower part of the cooking chamber to increase temperature. The smoldering pellets suck in the oxygen. As the heat escapes from the smoker, the top lid is opened.

Cooking Pellets vs. Heating Pellets

You may have heard people claiming that they have utilized heating pellets in pellet smokers. But it is strongly recommended that you never do this. Instead, fill your pellet hopper with cooking pellets that are food grade. They are produced from 100% hardwood under strict rules and regulations and utilize no additives, chemicals, preservatives, or binders, making them health hazard-free when burned. If you need more convincing, you must note that food exposed to smoke via heating pellets will have a bitter and gross taste.

Electricity Requirements

Although pellet smokers are reliant on hardwood pellets for combustion, they run on electricity. Therefore, it would be best to plug them into an outlet for all their components to work correctly, so you should plan to keep your pellet grill in a location close to an outlet.

If you intend to utilize your pellet cooker on the patio or deck with no access to a power source, some models have high amp extension cords. But you must keep in mind that this capability is model-specific and that every brand has unique specifications. Experts recommend you always plug your pellet smoker directly into a power source.

FAQ: Z Grills vs Traeger Grills

Is it possible to flip steaks on the Traeger?

Set your Traeger to 500°F and preheat it for 15 minutes while the lid is closed. Put the steaks on the grill and cook for up to six minutes on each side. Flip occasionally until the inner temperature reaches up to 135° for a medium-rare result.

Is it possible to cook burgers on the surface of a Traeger?

Place the burgers on the Traeger at 275°F for up to 45 minutes. It is recommended for patties to have a thickness of 1½ inches. Grill until the inner temperature reaches 130°F.

Is it possible to grill without smoke on the Traeger?

The higher the temperature, the faster the food will cook, and the pellet grill will not emit as much smoke. Because of this, it is possible to grill on the Traeger without smoke as long as the temperature is high.

Which Z Grill is the best?

According to reviews online, the best Z Grill model has to be the Z GRILLS-700D3. The reason for this is its construction, as it can withstand years and years of grilling.

The second reason is that it has a massive cooking surface of 700 square inches. As a result, you will be able to grill many food items to perfection. Also, you can engage in different cooking methods such as baking, roasting, and braising.

Z Grills vs Traeger – Final Thoughts

Hopefully, this article has helped you in your buying journey. Even though these brands may be similar, their products are distinct from one another. Either brand can be a superb fit for you, depending on your requirements.

But if you are more concerned about your budget, Z Grills are a truly excellent choice. They offer the best value when it comes to grilling.

Traeger has a long history and offers a premium experience when it comes to grilling. If you are more into refinement, you can’t go wrong with a Traeger either.

Lastly, if you want to see Traeger vs other pellet grills or a few more comparisons you might want to check out if we didn’t convince you yet.

References:

Holler Box