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The Best Professional Outdoor BBQ Grills for 2024

May 10th, 2024 | 15 min. read

By Steve Sheinkopf

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The Best Professional Outdoor BBQ Grills for 2024

After a tough couple of years, you can buy a professional, high-powered grill from any brand.

Kalamazoo is still the best professional grill without question and the most unique, as you will see. However, the price of their hybrid grills starts at $22,000.

It can be a bit confusing to choose between DCS, Hestan, and Lynx as the next tier down from Kalamazoo.

The decision ultimately depends on your grilling style and preferences.

Although they may look similar, these grills differ greatly in features such as infrared burners, rotisseries, and overall construction.

Keep reading to learn more about the features, differences, and potential problems when selecting a premium grill.

As a bonus, I will show you how to buy a pro-type grill while spending less.

Let's get started.

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The Best Professional Outdoor BBQ Grills for 2024


Before we dive into the specifics of each grill, let's talk about what you can expect from a professional grill and what they all have in common.

In other words, let me get into the details.

All the grills listed below are high-quality stainless steel, including types 316, 304, or 201.

You won't find any plastic or painted metals in these grills, ensuring durability and longevity.

Marine Grade Stainless Steel


Marine grade is a marketing term, so focus on the metal composition. Kalamazoo and Hestan both offer Marine-grade type 316 stainless steel and type 304.

Type 316 is highly resistant to rust and ideal for individuals living near bodies of water.

One exception is the Kalamazoo grill heads only come with type 316 marine grade. There is a considerable upcharge for a grill made with marine-grade stainless steel.

Because of the cost and the difficulty of folding and shaping marine grade stainless steel, most manufacturers use type 304 stainless.

However, on the flip side, Lynx manufactures the Sedona grill using type 201 grade stainless steel, which is less expensive but does not hold up as well as type 304 or 316 stainless.

Burner Output


The burner output on all three is 25,000 BTU (British Thermal Units) per burner.

Weber's best grill, the Summit, is 65,000 BTU, but only 13,000 per burner versus 75,000 for a pro with 25.000 BTU burners.

Grill Options


Each is available as a built-in to be placed in an outdoor kitchen or stand-alone as a freestanding grill in several sizes.

Lastly, each brand has matching appliances to outfit your outdoor kitchen. If you want to design an outdoor space, click this link for our webinar and step-by-step guide.

1. Kalamazoo Hybrid Fire Grills

Kalamazoo K500HS


Kalamazoo Hybrid Fire K500HS 73" Stainless Steel Freestanding Grill - $30,925.98


View Product Info > 

Kalamazoo offers a range of sizes for their grills, available in both built-in and freestanding models, including 28, 37, 7/8, and 54 inches.

Kalamazoo is built to order and unique in so many ways.

Then again, they were started as a sheet metal shop in Chicago in 1906.

Let me explain why you might want a Kalamazoo grill.

One of my best friends is a professional griller. I've learned professional grill masters are a different breed.

None of them cook with gas.

They all have their insanely proprietary blends of wood and charcoal for flavor on customized grills.

With the Kalamazoo hybrid fire grill, you can cook with the same ease and speed of gas while still enjoying the enhanced flavor and texture of wood and charcoal.


With burners located below and an easy-to-open drawer, lighting the Kalamazoo grill is especially easy.

But what really sets it apart from the other grills listed below is the added depth of flavor and texture it brings to your cooking.

Kalamazoo Grill Features

Natural Convection


Its deep well construction allows for more air circulation and natural convection, so food is cooked more evenly and flavorful from wood and charcoal.

Searing Capability

Unlike Hestan and Lynx, Kalamazoo has no infrared searing burner.

However, when you add charcoal or wood the grill does reach sear temperatures of 1,200 degrees higher than a traditional sear element of 1,100 degrees.

Burner Output


Kalamazoo is a powerful grill as well.

Like Hestan and Lynx, the burners are 25,000 BTUs each, but unlike the others, the cast brass burners weigh about 14 pounds with the ports placed in the back, so they don't clog over time.

Clean Up

Along with the deep well, clean-up is easy for ash and grease, with a collection system located in the bottom.


The grill can be customized to include grates designed for meat, fish, vegetables, and even a griddle for cooking breakfast items.

Marine-Grade Stainless Steel


If you live by the ocean, Kalamazoo is also available in marine-grade metal for a higher price.

"Marine grade" refers to a better grade of stainless or a taurine finish to resist rusting. It's more of a marketing term, but Kalamazoo is the only grill designed to last by the ocean.

Each Kalamazoo is handcrafted in Michigan and signed by the people who built it.

Kalamazoo Grill Head 42 and 54 Inches


In 2022, Kalamazoo built a grill without the Hybrid Fire Grill for the first time. The models introduced include the K42DB, a 42-inch grill, and the K54DB, a 54-inch grill.

These grills are better insulated than any others on the market, each weighing 360 pounds versus 240 for most other brands.

They lowered the grills by 2 inches to maintain the natural convection airflow for more even cooking.

Each grill features a rotisserie with two infrared burners.

The cooking surfaces consist of heavy-duty laser cut stainless steel grates, which hold heat better and provide those nice sear marks.

Last year, the price was $12,500. In 2023, they made the grills marine grade only and almost doubled the price.

Kalamazoo Problems

The Kalamazoo BBQ grill stands out with its absence of apparent weaknesses.

While the debate regarding the superiority of an infrared burner for precise searing continues, the combination of charcoal and wood ensures exceptional overall performance.

Regarding heat output, the infrared rotisserie burner falls slightly short compared to the Hestan, delivering 18,000 BTU.

However, it's important to note that Kalamazoo's uncompromising quality comes with a higher price tag.

The marine-grade non-hybrid drop-in grill starts at $19,000, while their hybrid freestanding grills begin at $22,000.

Lastly, it's worth mentioning that acquiring a Kalamazoo grill may require some patience. Due to the high demand and meticulous craftsmanship, getting your hands on one could take over two months.

Read More: Problems with Kalamazoo Grills

2. Lynx Grills

Lynx L42TRF


Lynx Professional 42" Stainless Steel Freestanding Grill - L42TRF-LP

View Product Info >

Lynx offers a range of sizes for their grills, both built-in and freestanding, including 30, 36, 42, and 54 inches:

  • The Lynx L30TRF is a 30-inch freestanding grill featuring one Trident infrared burner and one ceramic burner, equipped with a rotisserie.
  • The Lynx LF36ATRF offers a 36-inch standing configuration with all Trident infrared burners and a rotisserie, catering to those who prefer powerful and even heating.
  • For a versatile cooking experience, the Lynx L42TRF is a 42-inch freestanding grill that includes one Trident infrared burner, two ceramic burners, and a rotisserie.
  • The Lynx L42TR is another built-in option, a 42-inch grill equipped with one infrared Trident burner and two ceramic burners, complete with a rotisserie.
  • The Lynx L54TRF is a 54-inch freestanding model that combines one infrared Trident burner with three ceramic burners, also featuring a rotisserie for versatile outdoor cooking.
  • The Lynx L30R-3 is a 30-inch built-in grill designed with two ceramic burners and a rotisserie, perfect for a permanent outdoor kitchen setup.

Lynx grills offer four different configurations: all gas burners, a mix of gas burners and their Trident infrared burner, and exclusively infrared burners.

Additionally, you can now buy a Lynx grill as an all-sear model, with just one sear burner, or entirely with gas burners without any sear features.

I always advise one sear burner and a combination of gas so you have the flexibility to cook both ways.

Lynx Grill Features

Infrared Burner

Lynx Infrared Burner

Unlike a traditional gas burner like DCS, the infrared trident is direct, intense heat which spreads heat evenly across the cooking surface.

You can quickly sear the outside of your meat for a grill without overcooking.

The trident burners on the Lynx grill provide a wide range of searing temperatures, from 300 to 1,000 degrees.

This allows you to adjust the heat directly, eliminating the need to move your food around to different burners for temperature control.

You can put a nice char on more water-soluble foods like veggies and fruit by wilting them.

Ceramic Burner 


Unlike the other three, Lynx has a ceramic burner instead of cast brass or metal.

Cast brass is excellent, but ceramic never weathers.

They placed the burner ports on the underside to avoid getting clogged with any drippings.

Heat Distribution with Ceramic Radiant Briquettes


Lynx has ceramic radiant briquettes for heat distribution to increase heat and reduce flare-ups. You also have a slide-out shelf to catch any drippings.

Lynx Problems

During the pandemic, it was difficult to get a Lynx grill.

In addition to limited availability, Lynx's briquettes require hands-on cleaning. You can't flip the briquettes to self-clean like Heston.

Instead, you must empty them into a bucket and clean them by hand or purchase new briquettes. This is not a huge disadvantage, but it may require more work.

Read More: Lynx vs. Hestan BBQ Grills

3. DCS Series 9 Grills



DCS Series 9 48” Brushed Stainless Steel Built In Grill - $7,599.98


View Product Info >

DCS offers a range of sizes for their grills, both built-in and freestanding, including 30, 36, and 48 inches wide.

DCS used to claim to be an "all sear" grill by using ceramic rods throughout the grill to increase heat and prevent flare-ups.

However, they now have a searing burner output of 24,000 BTU in the series 7 and 9 grills.

Infrared will be faster because it's directed. The gas diffuses and spreads heat more.

You must stay on top of an infrared due to the speed, and you can burn your food more easily with an infrared burner.

Differences between DCS Series 7 and 9 Grills

Here are the key differences between the DCS Series 7 and Series 9 grills:

Series 9 Grills

  • The BE1-36RC features 3 burners with a rotisserie and smoker box on a cart.
  • The BE1-36RCI includes 3 burners with an infrared rotisserie and smoker box on a cart.
  • The BE1-48RC is equipped with 4 burners, a rotisserie, and a smoker box on a cart.
  • The BE1-48RCI offers 4 burners with an infrared rotisserie and smoker box on a cart.

Series 7 Grills

  • The BH1-30R features 2 burners with a rotisserie on a cart.
  • The BH1-36R offers 3 burners with a rotisserie on a cart.
  • The BH1-36RI includes 3 burners with an infrared rotisserie on a cart.
  • The BH1-48R is equipped with 4 burners and a rotisserie on a cart.
  • The BH1-48RS comes with 4 burners, a rotisserie, and an integrated side burner on a cart.
  • The BH1-48RI features 4 burners with an infrared rotisserie on a cart.

The Series 9 grill offers several notable enhancements compared to its predecessor, the Series 7.

DCS Grill Features


DCS Evolution-1

Firstly, it features convenient light-up knobs for enhanced visibility and ease of use.

Additionally, the top workspace on the Series 9 has been redesigned, allowing for a more spacious area to accommodate your grilling needs.

Grease Management

The Series 7 and 9 grills share the same grease management system, which cleverly angles down to the front of the grill and into a tray.

While this is a decent design, certain foods, such as hot dogs, may tend to roll slightly.

However, on the Series 9, you can lay the grates flat, providing a solution to prevent such rolling.



Furthermore, the Series 9 grill includes a steaming tray as well as a wood and charcoal accessory.

These features can infuse delectable flavors into your meats, adding an extra dimension to your grilling experience.

Here are the top six differences when stepping up to Series 9:

  • Increased Hood Top: The Series 9 grill features a taller hood top, providing additional space for secondary cooking needs.
  • Spring-Assisted Lid: Unlike the Series 7, the Series 9 grill has a spring-assisted lid, allowing for effortless fingertip opening and closing.
  • Electric Glow Bar Ignition System: The Series 9 grill employs an electric glow bar ignition system, which offers convenience and reliability compared to the battery spark system used in Series 7.
  • Infrared Burner for Rotisserie: The Series 9 grill is equipped with an infrared burner located at the back, specifically designed for use with the rotisserie function.
  • Halogen Lights: Inside the grill hood of the Series 9, you'll find halogen lights, providing bright visibility in low-light conditions.
  • Full Charcoal/Smoker Box: The Series 9 grill includes a full charcoal/smoker box that can be positioned anywhere on the grill, offering the ability to infuse distinct flavors into your meats. This differs from the Series 7, which has a smaller fixed charcoal box.

DCS Problems

DCS does not offer an all-infrared grill like Lynx or Hestan's color customization options.

Additionally, DCS's charcoal performance may not match that of Kalamazoo, and the DCS range does not have as many size options as Lynx.

You cannot purchase a DCS grill off-the-shelf; it must be assembled from A-La-Carte components out of the box.

Lastly, I am not a fan of an all-season grill. You must carefully watch what you cook to avoid burning it.

4. Hestan Grills

Hestan GMBR42CX2-LP-OR


Hestan 42" Citra Deluxe Freestanding Grill - $16,128.98

View Product Info >

Whether you prefer a built-in or freestanding grill, Hestan has the grill for you. The freestanding grills are 36 or 42 inches wide, and the built-ins are 30, 36, or 42 inches wide:


  • The GMBR30 model is available with either one trellis burner and one sear burner or two trellis burners with a rotisserie.
  • The GMBR36 series offers configurations such as three trellis burners with a rotisserie, two trellis burners with one sear burner and a rotisserie, or an all-sear version with a rotisserie.
  • The GMBR42 series includes options like four trellis burners with a rotisserie, three trellis burners with one sear burner and a rotisserie, or an all-sear version with a rotisserie.


  • The GMBR36CX2 is a freestanding grill featuring two trellis burners, one sear burner, a hidden rotisserie, and a side burner.
  • The GMBR42CX2 is a freestanding grill with three trellis burners, one sear burner, a hidden rotisserie, and a side burner.

Hestan Grill Features

Grill Hood

You can move it with one finger like the others, but the Hestan will stay in place, so you can grill with the hood partially open.



Hestan has diamond-cut thick grates at 5/16ths of an inch. It will hold heat and be more even.

Heat Distribution

Unlike Lynx, Hestan features reversible briquettes for the evenness of cooking, reducing flare-ups, and easier cleaning.

Trellis Burner


The Trellis burner is made of 321-grade metal with ports on all four sides.

Typically, metal would rust, but Hestan has done significant saltwater testing to prove its superiority to type 304 stainless steel.

Marine-grade stainless steel is considered only 316 stainless steel.

Variable Rotisserie Burner


Their rotisserie infrared burner is the best, and its BTU is between 12,000 and 18,000. It's on top, so you can cook on the utility shelf below. The rotisserie motor is also hidden.



Lastly, Hestan is the only grill available in 12 groovy California colors and available freestanding or built-in.

Hestan Problems

Like the others, this is a great grill, but the burner ports face the food directly, which can cause the burners to clog.

Read More: Hestan BBQ Grills

Affordable Grilling Options

Let's save some money. Each of these brands has a less expensive line of decent pro-type grills.

Lynx L600PSFR-LP


Lynx Sedona 36" Stainless Steel Freestanding Grill - $5,569.98


View Product Info >

Aspire by Hestan EABR36-LP


Aspire By Hestan 36" Stainless Steel Built-In Grill - $4,849.98


View Product Info >



DCS Series 7 30" Brushed Stainless Steel Traditional Built In Grill - $3,799.98

View Product Info >

Hestan Aspire

Hestan has the "Aspire" line with a traditional tubular burner rated at 23,000 vs. the 25,000 of the regular Heston line.

The rotisserie burner is not variable at 14,000 BTU, and the grates are stainless, not the thicker diamond cut.

DCS Series 7

Series 7 is another lower-priced option. It has the same output, just not the light-up knobs and cleanability as the series 9.

You do not get the nice smoking and steaming tray; the cover is not spring-assisted.

Lynx Sedona

The Lynx Sedona BBQ Grill is a more affordable option in Lynx's grill lineup. However, it differs from the other models in its construction and origin.

Unlike its counterparts, the Sedona is manufactured in China and utilizes a lower grade of stainless steel, specifically 201-grade stainless steel.

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What Is NOT a Professional Grill


Every video and blog loves every grill.

Nobody says, "Don't buy this grill."

However, be careful when you buy a high-end grill. Many don't have better construction or the high burner output typically associated with professional grills.

True story: Once, our chef placed her hand on a running grill to illustrate the cold spots. So be careful.

We don't carry all the brands but review all the good ones in our BBQ Guide. It's free. You can grab your copy by clicking this link.

Which Professional Grill Is the Best?

First, they all have their merits. All will give better and similar heat output, rotisseries and sear burners.

Kalamazoo is the best grill for cooking with wood, gas, and charcoal, but the price is steep: $22,000 and up.

DCS offers good power and now includes an infrared burner. You might like this feature if you prefer intense heat.

Lynx also has a good all-around grill and the most durable burner. Their sear is another great consideration, but infrared differs from a regular gas burner and must be learned.

Hestan is another excellent grill with the best grates, rotisserie burners, and 12 color options to choose from.

Overall, it depends on how you like your grill.

The Kalamazoo Hybrid allows you to infuse flavor into a better cooking system.

Lynx will allow you to cook and sear faster, while the Hestan is a good-looking alternative with color and excellent grates.

DCS will be popular. Series 9 does everything well now.

BBQ Grills


Answers to the most commonly asked questions about professional outdoor grills

What size grill do I need?

What features should I look for in a professional grill?

What is the difference between a professional grill and a standard grill?

How much should I expect to pay for a professional grill?

What are some reliable brands for professional BBQ grills?

How should I maintain and clean my grill?

Is it safe to use a BBQ grill indoors?

What safety measures should you follow while using a BBQ grill?

What is the warranty on professional grills?

Additional Resources

Imagine the perfect barbecue experience with the right grill, smoker, griddle. Our BBQ Grill Buying Guide makes this dream a reality. Learn from the best brands like Lynx, Kamado Joe, and Weber.

Download now and make every barbecue a story worth telling. Over 1 million people have read a Yale Guide.

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Steve Sheinkopf

Steve Sheinkopf is the third-generation CEO of Yale Appliance and a lifelong Bostonian. He has over 38 years of experience in the appliance industry, and he is a trusted source of information for consumers on how to buy and repair appliances.

Steve has also been featured in numerous publications, including the New York Times, Consumer Reports, The Boston Globe, Bloomberg Radio, the New York Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Entrepreneur, for his knowledge of how to buy appliances and appliance repair.

Steve is passionate about helping consumers find the best appliances for their needs, and he is always happy to answer questions and provide advice. He is a valuable resource for consumers who are looking for information on appliance buying, repair, and maintenance.

Despite being the worst goalie in history, Steve is a fan of the Bruins and college hockey, loves to read, and is a Peloton biker. The love of his life is his daughter, Sophie.

A Note About Pricing

Pricing on this blog is for reference only and may include time sensitive rebates. We make every attempt to provide accurate pricing at time of publishing. Please call the stores for most accurate price.