The outdoor griddle is a great alternative to a standard grill, which is the best when it comes to grilling steaks, winers or burgers but won’t handle eggs, pancakes or small vegetables.
Food of this type will fall through the gaps in grill grates which is what makes an outdoor griddle much better in this regard. It makes it possible to prepare completely different meals from a standard grill by introducing many new things to your menu other than regular meat.
For those bored with standard grilling it is without a doubt a very interesting alternative.
Another advantage of outdoor griddle is their large cooking area which makes it great when you have to cook a lot of food for a bigger group of people.
Griddle is available in many sizes and types which is why I have prepared a guide that makes it easier for you to find the best outdoor griddle based on your needs.
Camp Chef 600 Outdoor Griddle
604 total sq. in.
Blackstone 36" Outdoor Gas Griddle
720 total sq. in.
Blackstone 17" Griddle
260 sq. in.
For Existing Grill
Little Griddle GQ230
Lodge LPGI3 Pro-Grid Cast Iron
The Best Outdoor Griddles for 2020
1. Best Overall Camp Chef Outdoor Gas Griddle
A big and versatile outdoor gas griddle that I can recommend to grilling enthusiasts. Why?
That’s because Camp Chef Griddle 36 inch allows you to choose between grill grates and griddle.
It works best in the griddle version but there’s always the option to replace it with grill grates like in a regular, traditional grill.
That way you’ll be able to prepare delicious meat on grill grates or pancakes, eggs and other food of this type on the griddle.
No matter what type of cooking you choose, you have a very large cooking area at your disposal.
Let’s mostly focus on the griddle.
604 square inches of cooking area means space to prepare food for a very large number of people.
The entire area is heated by four independently adjustable burners that create four separate heat zones. It gives a whole lot of opportunities such as cooking different types of food at the same time for example.
The grease catcher is located in the right place and effectively collects all of the grease in a container. Many competitive models have a problem with the grease drainage system, grease tends to get in the places it shouldn’t be and runs down the grill’s leg for example. In this case this problem doesn’t exist thanks to the right shape of the grease catcher located in the lower left part of the griddle.
If you expect more space then the same model from Camp Chef is also available in several other sizes, bigger and smaller.
Camp Chef is a perfectly known and valued brand in the world of grilling and smoking. When it comes to this model, you can be sure that the quality of workmanship is very good.
The whole structure is simple yet solidly built, providing you with a lot of extra work space on the side shelves and two storage shelves under the grill.
The most important aspects of this griddle are quality and versatility ( griddle + grill grates ).
2. Runner Up Blackstone 36" Outdoor Griddle
A solidly built out of very good-quality materials, typical outdoor gas griddle.
Unquestionable advantage of Blackstone 36" Griddle is its size and four burners.
Such number gives plenty of opportunities, with all burners running it will allow to meet expectations of people at a large party or other event. If, however, you only need to cook something for 1-2 people then it’s not a problem, just use only 1-2 burners.
As you can see, such configuration of burners at this size can prove itself in a whole lot of situations.
The plate you cook food on can be easily removed at any moment. When it comes to cleaning, this model has a very well designed grease drainage system. You don’t have to worry that the grease will start running down the grill’s structure.
The hole that grease gets to the right container through is located in the middle of the upper part of the griddle. Once you're done cooking, all you have to do is empty the container which you can also do easily and conveniently.
Going back to the topic of cooking, four burners make it possible to create as many as four zones with different temperatures. You can utilize it to prepare different types of food at the same time using the same griddle.
Many people might associate the outdoor griddle with cooking simple breakfast food such as eggs or pancakes but you have to know that this type of grill will also handle meat perfectly. Bacon, steaks, hamburgers or wieners are the types of meat you can easily and quickly prepare in much larger quantities than on a regular gas or charcoal grill.
The burners are powerful enough to achieve a high temperature relatively quickly and evenly over the entire cooking area.
Therefore, Blackstone 36 inch is a solidly built outdoor gas griddle. Made of high quality materials, it is easy to assemble and durable. Another advantage is huge size and four burners that will make it work in most situations. It can cook economically for 1-2 people using 1-2 burners or for a bigger group of people at a party using its entire surface.
3. Portable Blackstone 17" Outdoor Griddle
You need a tabletop / mobile griddle ?
Blackstone 17 inch outdoor gas griddle is a perfect candidate when it comes to mobility and functionality.
It was designed with transporting and convenient cooking away from home in mind. It works brilliantly when camping and on any types of trips where cooking away from home is important.
Not only does it have a simple and functional structure, but it’s also very durable and low-malfunction.
Despite its small size it still offers a lot of cooking area, 260 square inches is still a lot for a mobile outdoor griddle.
To make it clear, I’m still talking about the one-burner 17 inch version.
The rectangle-shaped structure is very convenient to transport, it doesn’t take much space in the car. To make it more convenient, you can rotate the plate so that the entire grill is shaped even better for transport.
Of course this model comes with a grease drainage system that sends all grease to a special container right through a hole in the lower left part of the griddle. All you have to do is slide the container out of the front part of the grill and you can empty it when you’re done cooking.
One burner is more than enough at this kind of surface, it can reach a temperature of over 500 degrees F in a short time, which confirms that it is even great for cooking meat.
It runs on propane from a tank but you can buy a tank adapter hose separately if it is possible for you to use a big propane tank.
It works great when camping thanks to its versatility, it makes it possible to prepare interesting and diverse meals that consist not only of meat that is typical to regular grills but also vegetables, eggs, pancakes etc.
Of course it will also work well in household conditions for a small family or 1-2 people but its main advantage is mobility and ability to conveniently cook away from home.
4. For Existing Grill Little Griddle GQ230
You may be interested in a griddle created for existing grills only, you can use one with a gas grill or even a gas stove for example, as long as the size fits.
It is very important to properly match the plate with the grill or stove, you need to leave a minimum space on each side of the griddle to ensure proper air flow.
Most models have universal sizes that can fit most top grills.
Such solution is also effective and allows to save a lot of money and space that you need for every new grill. On top of that, a griddle of this type is malfunction-free as it’s just a solid and durable plate made 100% of high quality stainless steel.
An obvious downside of such solution is a pretty poor temperature control which sadly makes a difference when it comes to delicate food.
On the other hand, one upside is certainly the well thought-out structure, high enough side walls and Full-width grease well for simple cleanup.
It comes with handles that are useful for cooking and can be easily detached for more convenience and space during transport.
Little Griddle GQ230 is a high quality outdoor griddle recommended for majority of well known models of gas grills or even gas stoves.
If you don’t want to occupy even more space in your backyard with a new full-sized outdoor griddle then such plate makes a great solution while maintaining similar properties.
Little Griddle is a renowned manufacturer whose offer features high quality products. In their offer you will find many other types of outdoor griddle, for example Stainless Steel Round Griddle that fits perfectly on a kettle grill.
So if the model I suggested won’t fit on your grill then check other models from this manufacturer, all of their products have a similar high quality.
5. For Stovetop/Existing Grill Lodge LPGI3 Pro-Grid Cast Iron
It’s a type of griddle made for gas stoves, Lodge LPGI3 stands out among others not only with a different material the griddle was made of.
It has two different forms, one side is flat like a typical griddle, perfect for eggs, bacon or small veggies. On the other side, however, the surface is adapted for grilling meat for example, leaving characteristic grill marks on its surface.
The size fits two stove burners perfectly, from what I’ve seen I know that it fits portable gas stoves for example, which plenty of people use for cooking away from home, like when camping for example.
In such situation, combining a regular portable two burner stove and Cast Iron Griddle from Lodge gives you a whole lot of possibilities when it comes to diversity of the food you can prepare.
Of course it also fits many grills, you just have to check the size. I think, however, that it will work best in a home kitchen combined with a regular gas stove.
Lodge is famous for high quality cast-iron kitchenware so there is nothing to worry about when it comes to quality and durability.
Sadly, this type of griddle is way less convenient than any other type of outdoor griddle. The biggest downside is very poor temperature control and limited cooking area.
Another problem is accumulating grease, this type of griddle doesn’t have a very good grease drainage system. The manufacturer made bigger indentations/grooves on either side for grease to get into, but they aren’t as spacious and effective when cooking larger quantities of food.
And remember that cast-iron is a material that takes longer to warm up and holds heat for longer which means it also needs a long time to cool off.
As you may have noticed, there are many types of outdoor griddle so if you still have any doubts then I have good news for you. Below I have put several key tips to keep in mind when looking for a new outdoor griddle.
You should definitely check them out if you’re not sure which of the models I suggested will be the best for you.
How did I pick the best ones ?
I take many aspects into account when creating lists of the best models in guides like this one. First and foremost, I pay particular attention to the price to quality ratio and then to the quality of workmanship, durability, additional features or even the warranty.
Based on that, I create the initial list that I gradually eliminate the poorest models from and prepare the rest for practical tests that are the best way to show how much each model is worth.
I have a lot of experience with traditional grills as well as obscure ones. It also applies to many other kitchen tools created with cooking outside in mind.
How I test ?
This is actually my favorite and arguably the easiest stage, practical tests consist of cooking. I simply cook as much as possible while watching how each of the grills functions in real life.
I evaluate the quality of workmanship, the burner power for outdoor gas griddles and many other important aspects depending on the griddle type.
On top of regular cooking I also evaluate the grease drainage system, assembly, cleaning or mobility. These aspects are invisible at the first glance and can only be tested during practical tests.
At this stage I approve the final list of the best griddle that features plenty of models familiar to me as well as some new ones.
Types of Griddles
Full-sized or commercial – These are available at a size similar to a regular gas grill or much bigger. Their advantage is the ability to prepare food for as many as a few dozen people. They have many independently controlled burners which allows you to create different heat zones and cook different types of food at the same time. Commercial versions are used at restaurants where they can serve a very big number of people.
Mobile / Tabletop – Versions designed with cooking away from home in mind, mostly when camping or on road trips of any kind. They are small-sized, much lighter and designed with convenient transport and easy assembly in mind. They work just as great in household conditions where there’s simply no room for a full-sized grill.
Placed on Existing Grill – It’s a plate that you can use directly over the source of heat in a gas or charcoal grill, the plate absorbs the heat emitted by the grill. Its main advantage is much lower price but it doesn’t offer the same efficiency as a full-sized outdoor griddle. I believe that it is an inexpensive addition for those who mostly focus on smoking or grilling only.
What to look for in Outdoor Griddle
Budget – Right at the start you should carefully plan your budget as the price range for different models is pretty big. If you have a pretty limited budget then you should certainly give up on bigger models, why should you need a grill that can cook food for a few dozen people. I think that within the $200-500 range you will find something perfect for household conditions in a small or a bigger family.
Size – Think about what purpose you need an outdoor griddle for and for how many people you cook. You need a griddle to cook at bigger parties? In that case look for the biggest, commercial models. You have a big family? Standard full-sized griddle with a few burners will be more than enough. If, however, you only cook for 1-2 people or are looking for something to go camping with, look for a tabletop/mobile outdoor griddle.
Number of burners – It mostly applies to bigger models, the more burners the more heat zones you can create. It makes it possible to cook different types of food on the same grill at the same time.
Type / Mobility – Remember that you can choose from electric, gas outdoor griddle or plates that you can place over an existing charcoal or gas grill. Think about which type will be the best for you, I have put short information on each of them above.
Versatility – The best models are the ones with a bigger number of burners, they give plenty of possibilities thanks to having so much cooking area. Some models have a structure that you can buy accessories for such as extra work area.
Grease drainage system – Properly placed grease drainage is not all, what also matters is how this element is finished. There are models where it wasn’t really well designed which causes grease to get outside the special container. You should definitely check reviews by others to make sure that the grease drainage system is properly designed. Avoid models that don’t have a grease management system or grease pan built.
Temperature Control / Stability – The best control is provided by an outdoor gas griddle where you can adjust the burner knob however you like. Sometimes food requires exact temperature which makes it important. It is certainly going to be much more difficult to achieve the exact temperature with plates for existing grills.
BBQ and grilling are my biggest passions.