If you follow my Instagram account, you’ll know how fond I am of having a barbeque. (Don’t follow me already? Find me here!) We have a Weber gas BBQ at home on our deck and use it all the time. I’m not sponsored by Weber – we bought the Weber gas BBQ when we were living in the UK as we knew a Weber BBQ was a solid investment and it was something we planned on getting a lot of use out of. We loved it so much that we shipped it to Australia when we moved. It has been a really good product that has lasted us well given the amount of use it gets.
Since moving to Australia, we’ve spent a lot of time cooking food on the outdoor BBQ at our local park and at the beach too. We love cooking outdoors and it is really handy to be able to take food so we can finish our day out with some food cooked on a BBQ hotplate at a park. I love that the outdoor BBQs in public places are (mostly) free to use and are kept so clean. Recently though, we’ve been meeting friends at the beach and they have their own portable BBQ. Taking a small gas BBQ has been a game-changer as it opens up so many more places – it means you’re no longer tied to going somewhere that has a bbq point.
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Why spend money buying the best small BBQ in Australia when there are free bbqs everywhere?
We’ve lived happily for the last five years in Australia without owning a portable grill or camping cooker. A portable BBQ is by no means an essential piece of kit. We don’t camp (rather I don’t camp unless it is a glamping site with all the mod cons that include a toilet and a real bed!), so shopping for the best camping BBQ was never really on our agenda. We’ve always been happy using the free public BBQ and they are fabulous. However, there are a few things that I’ve come to love about the experience of cooking on your own camping BBQ or portable BBQ:
You know where your own small BBQ been and how clean it is.
While the council do an amazing job of keeping the public barbeques clean, sometimes we arrive to cook on one of the BBQ hotplates and it hasn’t yet been cleaned and the people before us may have left it in a mess. Even when we cook on them and clean it up, we know we aren’t doing as good a job as the council do when they clean it.
You know exactly what has been cooked on your own bbq and it is as clean as you make it! We don’t have any food allergies in our family, but we have friends whose child has a serious peanut allergy. We love cooking satay chicken when we BBQ, so I’m pretty sure that people with severe food allergies like our friends aren’t able to use public BBQs because they don’t know what has been cooked on them before them. There’s a lot to be said for having your own small bbq and being in charge of cleaning it.
You don’t have to clean up right away when you have your own portable gas BBQ.
When we cook a beach barbecue on the free beach BBQs there are sometimes other people waiting to cook after us. And even if there aren’t, we always do our best to clean the bbq hotplate right away after finishing cooking in case anyone else comes along. This means our food goes cold while we spend time cleaning. If you have your own small bbq, you can just leave it, eat your food and either clean it after or take it home to clean rather than having it interrupt your day out.
You know your own small BBQ will work.
With a public BBQ, you have no way of knowing if you’re going to get there and press the button to turn it on only to find that it doesn’t work. To be honest, the council is really good at maintaining the BBQs here so it’s not often that happens but we have had it happen before. If you take your own small BBQ to the beach, you know it will work when you’re ready to cook!
You can eat anywhere you like when you bring your own camping stove or portable bbq to cook on.
I think this is the biggest game-changer around with owning a small bbq – when you have your own portable gas BBQ or portable charcoal BBQ, you can decide where you want to cook and eat. You are no longer tied by the restrictions of where the public BBQs are based. This means you can go to quieter places to enjoy cooking and eating your BBQ rather than having to go where all the people are. For me, this is the main reason to buy one!
Types of small BBQ or portable cooking facilities available
There are a few different options for cooking food outdoors:
A portable BBQ
You can get a mini BBQ/small portable BBQ/camping BBQ – this does pretty much everything you could need. They have a grill for cooking and some have a hotplate area too. If they don’t come with a hotplate, you can buy one as an add on or you can use a frying pan on them too ( which is how we cook pancakes for breakfast at the beach!)
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Who has a portable bbq? We usually cook on the free beach bbqs but after enjoying breakfast out with our friends this morning cooked on their @zieglerbrown #ziggybbq I really want to buy one for beach days. It was so lovely cooking pancakes 🥞 and bacon 🥓 on our own bbq and not worrying about how long it took, who was waiting or worrying about cleaning it right away. It made such a difference to the day. Do you cook on the free bbqs or take your own to the beach or park for days out? 🍗 🌭 🍔🌽🍤 Which brand of #portablebbq do you own? Would you recommend it? #bbq #beachbbq #barbecue #barbeque #grill #ziggy #cooking #eatoutdoors #makingmemories #childhoodunplugged #beachdays #daysout #familytime #pomsinoz #expatadventures #pancakes #lazysunday
Portable BBQs can be either a gas BBQ, a charcoal BBQ or even an electric bbq, so it’s important to think about where and when you’re planning on using it. A gas BBQ is flexible – you take your own small gas bottle with your BBQ which means you can cook anywhere. An electric BBQ really limits your options, and a charcoal BBQ takes a long time to get the coals ready and also takes time to cool down when you’re ready to clean up. While I always think a portable charcoal bbq makes the best-tasting food, I also find it a faff as I like the convenience of a small BBQ powered by gas.
A camping cooker/camping grill
The other option is you can get a camping stove, a camping grill or a camping cooker that offers both a grill and stove. These are good for heating things up, or for cooking sausages and bacon. They offer a fairly flexible option, but don’t be fooled into thinking you can’t do all of this and more on a portable bbq as you absolutely can and a portable BBQ will likely be more powerful and more durable too. You’d be surprised that you can even cook a full roast dinner on a portable BBQ, so for this post our focus is going to be on portable BBQs as I think it is a more flexible option than even the best camping stove.
Finally, you have the option of small disposable BBQs which you light and cook on and then throw away. These have advantages in that you don’t need to clean them and they get ready really quickly once you light them. The big downsides are that thay are such a waste to the environment – you throw the whole thing away after one use and the foil tray is not environmentally friendly. They lose their heat really quickly too, and if you cook outside often like we do, they would end up costing you a small fortune.
It’s a good idea to think about what you want from a small BBQ before you go to the BBQ shop or start looking for the best small BBQ online. For us, a small gas BBQ offers the ultimate flexibility for family days out.
Choosing the best small BBQ Australia has to offer
When you’re looking for the best small bbq, you need to accept that it will be a step down from your usual family BBQ at home. A portable BBQ grill is not going to be as big or have all the bells and whistles that your regular BBQ offers. You’re going to be looking for different things in a portable small bbq too like durability, weight, grill size, handles and sturdiness. Whether you want to find the best portable gas bbq for camping trips or for days out at the beach or park, you want an outdoor grill that is going to last you for the long term.
Gas-powered Weber grills
Weber grills are probably the best-known brand of BBQs around. Whether you’re looking for a portable charcoal grill to take for days out at the beach or a portable camping BBQ powered by gas that you can cook on for weekends away, they offer a range of solid products to choose from with many people believing Weber to be the makers of the best bbq. Weber grills also come with a five-year warranty from the manufacturer for added peace of mind.
Weber Baby Q
Get the BBQ Weber Q1000 Portable Gas Barbecue Grill from Amazon
(Typically while writing this post, the item has gone out of stock overnight on Amazon but I’m sure it will be back in again soon otherwise you can check it out at your local Bunnings!)
The Weber portable BBQ range is called the Weber Q series. A Weber Q barbie is something you can use at home or out and about. The Weber Q1000 Portable Gas Barbecue offers a stainless steel burner, a durable cast aluminium lid and body, a lid that is cool to the touch and it’s a compact size without compromising on quality.
This mini Weber BBQ looks smart and stylish, while also having optional add ons such as a stand, add on hot plates and a cover so you can choose to expand your BBQ gear to suit how you plan to use it.
A small weber BBQ is a great way to still get a quality product while also choosing something portable that you can take out and about. The Weber Q1000 comes with an Australian standard 3/8″ gas hose and regulator, it weights 10.75kg so is pretty easy to move around and it offers a powerful 9.0MJ/h quality solid stainless steel burner. It has a cooking area of 1200 cm2.
As a huge fan of Weber BBQs, the Weber portable BBQ Baby Q would be my choice of best portable bbq as I think it offers all of the features you need with a durable product and a brand you can trust.
Gasmate is an Australian owned company and they offer a range of fabulous small bbqs for camping, days at the beach or park trips.
Gasmate Adventurer Deluxe 2
The Gasmate Adventurer Deluxe 2 two-burner portable bbq has a sturdy body, a big cooking space and easy carry handles. The Gasmate Adventurer Deluxe 2 is a convenient portable BBQ with a generous cooking surface and reliable ignition for easy lighting. It offers a powerful high heat output of 17 Mj/h and has a generous hotplate cooking space of 2200cm². It comes ready to use and is supplied with hose and regulator and it has small fold out legs so you can stand it up for cooking and then store it away easily.
This is a really solid choice for larger families due to the cooking size, although it is a heavier option (weighing in at 15.7kg).
Gasmate Voyager Portable BBQ
The Gasmate Voyager Portable BBQ is another compact but sturdy option for days out at the beach. It is smaller than the Adventurer and has just one burner, but it still offers a cooking area of 1600cm2 and has an output of 12mj/h. It offers an easy ignition and has a durable stainless steel burner. It’s a good option if you’re looking for a cheap portable BBQ that is compact as it weighs in around 9.1kg.
If you’re going to be using your portable BBQ for camping trips or going to be somewhere for a long day, then you might still be tempted to look for the best portable charcoal BBQ. There is something lovely about cooking on a charcoal grill – the small is just so good and the food tastes that bit smokier. That said, it’s not for me as I love the convenience of a small gas bbq but if you’re set on the idea of getting a portable charcoal grill for days out then read on.
Weber Go-Anywhere Charcoal Grill
If you can’t get past the idea of finding the best small charcoal bbq, then we’re back to recommending Weber products again.
This little portable charcoal BBQ is great for taking as a camping stove if you’re not bothered about the convenience of a gas BBQ.
It’s easy to pack away and transport, it weighs only 2kg and has a porcelain enamelled finish prevents rust.
BBQ kit: Stock up on your essential BBQ accessories
When you’ve chosen the best portable BBQ in Australia for your days out, you need the best BBQ accessories to match! Even if you’re undecided about whether to invest in a small BBQ yet, these BBQ kits and accessories are everything you need for cooking the ultimate BBQ – whether that happens to be on the free beach BBQs, on your own portable BBQ or at home.
These BBQ accessories are great to buy for yourself but they also make a great BBQ gift ideas if you’re struggling to think of something to buy for the BBQ lover in your life.
BBQ tool set
Everybody needs a BBQ tool set for cooking outdoors. This handy BBQ kit is presented in a lovely carry case. It doesn’t matter how many BBQ cooking tools I have, the only three things I ever use are tongs, a fork and a spatula for flipping. Don’t waste money buying a huge kit with loads of tools – this BBQ utensils gift box has you covered with everything you need. It’s much better to buy a smaller set of BBQ utensils that are better quality as you will never need to replace them again.
Kebab skewer forks
Without fail, our BBQs always have chicken kebabs and vegetable skewers on them. These handy kebab skewers make it so easy!
BBQ grill mats
These BBQ mats make cleaning up after a bbq so easy. They are especially good for using on public bbqs too as you just line the BBQ and cook right on the mat. It makes cleaning up so much easier and you need to worry less about cooking on a surface that might not be as clean as you’d like. When we’ve finished cooking we just lift it off the hotplate with a pair of tongs and put it in a plastic bag ready to clean when we get home. You can use the again and again and again (seriously, our mat is five years old and is still going strong!)
BBQ cleaning utensils
Cleaning a BBQ is no fun but it’s an essential part of owning a BBQ. Clean your bbq with ease with this bbq brush and scraper to make the job as easy as possible.
Cleaning BBQ wipes
Whichever brand you choose, heavy-duty BBQ wipes are really handy when it comes to cleaning up or wiping down a public bbq or to keep your own portable BBQ clean.
Keep food cool
If you’re planning a full day out before you start cooking, getting a large cool box/cooler/Esky is essential. I also find it really handy to get one on wheels so you can move it from the car to the BBQ area easily (although if you have a beach wagon then it doesn’t matter if it’s on wheels as you can just pop it in your wagon to move it around).
A soft cooler bag is lighter and easier to pack in your car than a solid cooler.
A large picnic rug is an essential piece of kit for our days out to cook a bbq.
Enjoy your days out with the best small bbq in Australia!
I hope this post has inspired you to go shopping for the best portable bbq so you can enjoy some family days out!