Pit Boss Pellet Grill Reviews: TOP 6 Grills [2020]

If you are in a hurry and just want to find out what the BEST Pit Boss pellet grill is, then we recommend the Classic 700 as the best one.

Pit Boss has been in the pellet-grilling game since 1999. In the intervening years, founder Dan Thiessen and his sons, Jeff and Jordan, have cultivated a reputation for quality grills and personalized customer service. How well do their products hold up to industry standards? Here’s a handy list of Pit Boss pellet grill reviews to help you find out the answer.

In this article, we’re going to review the following Pit Boss pellet grills:

Shopping For A Pellet Grill: What You Need to Know

Before you read our Pit Boss smoker reviews, you should have a basic understanding of what a pellet grill is, and what it’s used for. If you’re a first-time buyer, pay close attention to the following information. It will help you narrow down the field and choose the pellet smoker that’s right for you.

What are the advantages of a pellet grill?

Pellet grills combine the convenience of gas grills with the authentic flavor that charcoal-fueled units provide. Instead of using either of these fuel sources, however, it runs off of pellets made of compressed hardwood sawdust. These pellets are stored in an attached chamber called a hopper, from which they’re fed into the main cooking chamber using an auger component. There, a hot rod ignites the pellets, starting a fire that you can calibrate by using the attached temperature control panel.

One of the best aspects of a pellet grill is its versatility. Most units can be used to perform a myriad of cooking techniques, from smoking to grilling to roasting. Some people even use their pellet grills to bake cakes and pies.

Is there a difference between a pellet grill and a pellet smoker?

For all intents and purposes, the terms “pellet grill” and “pellet smoker” are interchangeable. If you’re allured by the concept of a pellet grill, but you’re not a big fan of that smoked-food flavor, not to worry. Most units will allow you to control the amount of wood flavor that you get, especially if you use high-heat cooking applications instead of smoking. You can also offset the intensity by shopping for mild-flavored pellets, such as alder or maple. Bear in mind that if you opt to purchase a Pit Boss grill, you’ll get the best results with Pit Boss pellets.

What should I look for when shopping for a pellet grill?

To help you get started, here’s a list of the most pertinent features and benefits of a pellet smoker. Bear in mind that some of these qualities are subjective. For example, the amount of grilling space should be proportionate to the size of your group, or how often you grill. A couple who rarely entertains will have no need of a grill with 800 square inches of cooking space, whereas a larger family would have a more difficult time with a smaller unit.

  • Value—Consider how much you’re willing and able to spend on a pellet grill
  • Durability—Pay close attention to the quality of the materials, as well as the efficiency of the overall construction
  • Pellet Efficiency—Take note of how quickly the auger component feeds pellets into the chamber
  • Size—The amount of grilling space that’s available (usually measured in square inches)
  • Type of Control Panel—Look for sophisticated technology that makes for a largely hands-free operation
  • Temperature Probes—The best grills will offer dual probes that report the internal temperature of the meat, as well as the cooking chamber itself
  • Ease of Setup—Assembly should take no more than two hours for a single person
  • Ease of Use—Operation should be straightforward and efficient, with minimal cleanup duties required

What’s the best way to use a pellet grill or smoker?

Since these units allow you to “set it and forget it,” they’re ideal for low-and-slow cooking applications such as smoking, braising, and barbecuing. To give you some idea of how this process works, take a look at this YouTube video on how to use a Pit Boss pellet grill to make smoked ribs:

Though a pellet grill will yield excellent results at low temperatures, the sky is the limit. You can also use these units to turn out grilled burgers and dogs for the neighborhood barbecue; prepare prosciutto-wrapped asparagus for a quick side dish; or bake a pan of cookies for dessert.

Safety Precautions

Remember, just because the fire is out of sight doesn’t mean that it isn’t a potential hazard. Always keep the grill in a well-ventilated area, with the chimney attachment open to let the exhaust out. Since wet pellets can cause the auger to clog, check your hopper regularly to be sure that your fuel remains dry. When you’re finished cooking, keep an eye on the temperature gauge until the fire is completely out. Finally, be aware that while these grills use pellets for fuel, they still require electricity to run the auger component. Secure all electrical cords and connect them to a ground fault circuit interrupter to avoid the risk of tripping or electrocution when the grill is in use. 

Pit Boss Pellet Grill Reviews

So, how well does the current batch of Pit Boss grills meet the criteria we discussed earlier? In this section, we’ll go over the specifications of several top models, including a list of pros and cons for each one.

#1 Pit Boss 700FB

The 700FB offers 700 square inches of grilling space, including a flame broiler for searing. This is a relatively rare and sought-after feature in the world of pellet grills. Many manufacturers presume that people will be using these products mainly for smoking and other low-heat applications, but with the 700FB, Pit Boss provides grillers with a versatile, multifaceted product.

This unit is constructed of heavy-gauge steel, with porcelain-coated cast iron cooking grates. The control panel is fully digital, and can be used to set the temperature from anywhere from 180 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. A handy grease-catching bucket is on hand to keep cleanup to a minimum. Still, we would recommend lining these buckets with aluminum foil to further cut back on the cleaning chores.

Pros:

  • Holds up well even with repeated, regular use
  • Able to withstand exposure to the elements, even when used in cold weather
  • Flame broiler provides a great sear on grilled meats

Cons:

  • Adds pellets based on time rather than temperature
  • Achieves better results when used in conjunction with pricey add-ons
  • Auger tends to jam frequently, especially with other pellet brands

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

#2 Pit Boss 71820FB PB820FB

The Pit Boss 820 is a 820-square inch unit that could easily accommodate a party of eight to ten people, and it’s set at a reasonable price point to boot. The dial-in temperature control boasts an LED readout screen and a range of 180 to 500 degrees. Since many pellet smokers have difficulty reaching temperatures above 425 or so, this is a major perk. The cart-style design features two large, open-spoke wheels that make the unit more maneuverable, although they do pose something of a tripping hazard.

Like the 700FB, the cooking grates on this unit are composed of cast iron with an easy-to-clean porcelain coating. Overall, the heating elements do a solid job for a unit of this size, but the control panel readings can be slightly off at times.

Pros:

  • Efficient pellet control
  • Makes great smoked chicken
  • Generous capacity
  • Provides uniform heat for even cooking

Cons:

  • No pellet hopper cleanout function
  • Upper cooking grate is more for keeping foods warm
  • Temperature readout can be finicky
  • Some shipping issues have been reported

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

#3 Pit Boss Austin XL

This unit offers grillers a substantial 1000 square inches of grilling space—enough to invite the entire block over for an afternoon cookout. The durable construction includes porcelain-coated cast iron grilling grates, a digital control panel with LED readout screen, and four rolling casters for maneuverability. A flame broiler and meat temperature probe round out the benefits.

The Austin XL grill has a broader temperature range than most of the competition. It can hold its heat from 150 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, making it effective across a range of cooking techniques. If you enjoy low-and-slow southern barbecue as well as a good sear on your filet mignon, then this could be just the model for you.

Be aware, however, that while the meat is moist and tender when cooked at low temperatures, it doesn’t have a ton of smoked flavor. This problem could be mitigated somewhat with the use of stronger-flavored pellets, but we thought it was worth mentioning nonetheless.

Pros:

  • Very efficient heating system
  • Has a ton of space for larger gatherings
  • Easy to use
  • Excellent at turning out pizza and grilled flatbreads

Cons:

  • Doesn’t provide a lot of smoked flavor
  • Not as efficient at lower temperatures
  • Meat probe temperature is not always accurate

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

#4 Pit Boss Classic 700

The Pit Boss Classic 700 shares many of the attributes of the 700FB, with 700 square inches of grilling space and a temperature range of 180 to 500 degrees. The cart-style design features cleverly engineered wheels that make the unit easy to move from one end of the patio to the other. A silver grease bucket is on hand to catch drips, and it’s one of the best-designed grease management systems we’ve seen. A flame broiler allows you to get that prized char on grilled meats once they’ve reached the desired temperature.

A digital control panel gives you the temperature readout on an LED screen, so you can easily use this unit in the dark. The one complaint we have is with the grilling grates, which are made of porcelain-coated wire instead of cast iron. While they’ll still hold up to regular use if they’re cleaned and treated properly following each use, they aren’t as durable as the ones on the 700FB.

Pros:

  • Very cool and efficient design
  • Effective drip pan
  • Flame broiler for searing
  • Provides great smoke flavor

Cons:

  • Requires close maintenance during use
  • No side shelf
  • Lid has a bulky, awkward design that makes it difficult to lift
  • Grill grates are somewhat flimsy

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

#5 Pit Boss 72820 Deluxe

The heavy, 16-gauge steel construct and copper-finished lid make this model one of the most luxurious pellet grills on our list. With 820 square inches of grilling space and a temperature range of 180 to 500 degrees, it could be an excellent fit for larger families. There’s even a built-in bottle opener, since we all know that grilling can be a social event as much as a cooking technique. The chimney has a cool L-shaped design, and the cart-style design features two wheels and an efficient grease bucket.

Like the 700FB and the Classic 700, the 72820 Deluxe features a flame broiler for searing and a dial-in digital control panel with an LED readout screen. This grill gives slow-cooked foods a delectable smoky flavor, and a built-in meat probe allows you to see when the ingredients have reached their desired temperature. While it isn’t as effective at low temperatures as it is at grilling, it does get the job done eventually. We’d recommend this grill to anyone who needs a minimum of 800 square inches of grilling space, and who would appreciate the raft of cosmetic features that it offers.

Pros:

  • Offers decent value for the price
  • Durable construction
  • Lots of nifty extras, including a bottle opener

Cons:

  • Flimsy wheels
  • No pellet hopper cleanout function
  • Not as effective when cooking at lower temperatures

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

#6 Pit Boss Portable Tailgate/Camp Pellet Grill

The only portable model on our list offers 340 square inches of grilling space and a digital control panel with an LED readout screen. The legs can be folded, making this an excellent choice for tailgating and camping expeditions. While the five-pound hopper capacity is on the smaller side, that could actually be a plus in this situation, since it decreases the overall weight of the unit. For a travel grill, this unit is remarkably versatile, turning out great smoked flavor and consistent results.

Pros:

  • Portable size
  • Provides excellent char-broiled flavor
  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Effective at turning out baked goods

Cons:

  • On the heavier side for a travel grill
  • Auger tends to overfeed the burn chamber
  • Low pellet hopper capacity

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

The Winner

There’s no doubt about it—Pit Boss has turned out a number of decent pellet grills in its day. The question is, do any of these units stand above the rest? And if so, why?

If we had to choose, we would award the prize to the Pit Boss Classic 700. Not only does it offer the most attractive design out of all the available models, its grease-management system makes cleanup a snap. While there’s technically no side shelf, the top of the pellet hopper can be used for prep and storage space during the cooking process. Considering all that this unit has to offer, its list of shortcomings can be easily overlooked.

We hope our Pit Boss smoker reviews have provided you with all the information you need to make your decision. Even if you don’t agree with our conclusion, one of the models listed here is bound to suit your individual needs.

Read our Pit Boss vs Traeger comparison. You can also check our Pit Boss pellet grill troubleshooting article.

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