<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=544864635709320&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Offer

Wait! Before You Go

Struggling to choose a grill? Discover top brands & values in our buying guide.

Free Download: Appliance Buying Guide

No thanks, I know what I'm looking for.

Best Professional Outdoor BBQ Grills (Reviews/Ratings/Prices)

Steve Sheinkopf  |  May 06, 2019  |  7 Min. Read

Lynx  |  Professional Grills  |  BBQ Grills  |  Kalamazoo  |  DCS  |  Hestan

Start finding answers in our Resource Center full of Videos, Buying Guides and Checklists

Learn More
 
Free Delivery & Assembly of Grills Over $499

The best professional BBQ brands have changed over the last few years. New brands like Hestan, and more established brands, such as DCS and Lynx, have created some very good grills.

Other brands like Viking have become less popular due to issues (which is why their parent company bought Lynx).

In this article, you will learn the best professional BBQ grills, how they stack up,  and why you should consider each one.  

You will also learn the other grill types like pellet and charcoal grills. They cook differently than a professional gas grill.

You should know the difference between them before you buy any grill. 

This article is long with videos included. You can read it straight through or use our table of contents to jump to any preferred brands. 

You can also download the Yale Grill Guide or request a demo on any grill by just signing on our appointment scheduler

Quick Tip: Most of these grills heavily promote their main lines. You can and should look into buying their less expensive, less featured models.

Best Professional Outdoor BBQ Grills

The main differences are thinner grates, 23,000 per burner instead of 25,000 and a less powerful rotisserie burner as well.

Most professional grills are similar in BTU output and construction. Take a look at the chart below of our professional grills:

 

 Hestan

Kalamazoo

DCS

Lynx

Fuel Type

Natural Gas (NG) or Liquid Propane (LP)

Natural Gas (NG) or Liquid Propane (LP)

Natural Gas (NG) or Liquid Propane (LP)

Natural Gas (NG) or Liquid Propane (LP)

Grill Type

Built-In or Freestanding

 Built-In or Freestanding

Built-In or Freestanding

Built-In or Freestanding

BTU Output

 Up to a total of 118,000 BTU

Up to a total of 110,000 BTU

 Up to a total of 92,500 BTU

 Up to a total of 69,000 

Smoking Capabilities

No

 Yes

 Yes

Yes 

Rotisserie

 Yes

 Yes

 Yes

Yes 

Infrared

 Yes

Yes

 Yes

Yes

Side Station

 Yes

Yes 

 Yes

 Yes

Finish

12 Designer Color Options 

Stainless steel or marine-grade steel

 Stainless Steel

Stainless Steel 

Warranty

1 year parts and labor

2 years parts and labor

2 years parts and labor

1 year parts and labor 

Here are some differences to help you decide.  Let’s look at the brands below.

Kalamazoo

Kalamazoo-1

Kalamazoo is recognized as the World's best professional outdoor BBQ grill. Then again, it starts at $14,000 and up.

However, Kalamazoo is truly unique in many aspects.

First, the grill has a hybrid drawer over the gas burners, so you can infuse your food with wood and charcoal for flavor and texture.  

kalamazoo-wood-fired-grilling

Kalamazoo Hybrid Drawer

Kamazoo drawer-1 Kalamzoo drawer2
Kalamazoo Hybrid Drawer Kalamazoo Hybrid Drawer Close Up

Unlike charcoal or wood-fired grills, Kalamazoo adds the speed of pro-gas burners.

Kalamazoo is also deeper than other grills for better air circulation. It's similar to convection and will cook the food more evenly.

Lastly, this made to order grill can be ordered in type 316 stainless. If you live by the ocean, this grill will be “marine-grade” or less resistant to rusting.

They add molybdenum for salt resistance...It is not a guarantee. You still have to maintain your grill, and it will rust in spots.

K1000HT Hybrid Fire Freestanding Grill (Marine Stainless) - $26,995 

k1000ht-hybrid-fire-freestanding-grill-1

  • Cooks with any combination of charcoal, wood, and gas
  • 51-inch four-burner grill with primary grilling area measuring 1,012 square inches
  • Cast brass burners weigh in at 14 pounds each and offer 25,000 BTUs of awesome grilling power
  • Deep firebox engineering delivers a more even heat at the grill grate and more dynamic heat circulation for rotisserie roasting and smoking meats.
  • Custom, laser-cut grill grates create amazing grill marks in a selection of patterns optimized for different types of food.
  • Marine-Grade Stainless (316 Stainless)

 

Kalamazoo Hybrid Fire BBQ Grills

 

 

Hestan

LiveAbode-Features-Hestan-Outdoor-Built-In-Grills

Hestan is a newer grill having started production in 2017. They have a commercial range pedigree.

The Hestan distinguishes itself with incredibly solid diamond-cut grates. These grates will hold heat better for faster, more thorough cooking.

Image result for hestan grates yaleappliance_hestan_20170411
Hestan Grill Grates Hestan Rotisserie

Hestan was the first with the 18,000 BTU infrared rotisserie burner.

You can also cook with just this burner alone.

hestan-side-burner

Hestan Side Burner

GMBR42CX2-NG-SS Freestanding - $12,638

GMBR42CX2-NG-SS

  • Multiple colors finish available
  • High-performance 321SS Trellis tubular burners and 1 Sear Burner
  • 282 sq. in., 5/16" thick DiamondCut lasered in-house stainless-steel warming rack with 3 vertical positions + 5/16" thick DiamondCut lasered in-house stainless steel grate
  • 782 sq. in. total grilling surface
  • Horizon hood with spring-assisted hinges to hold at desired heights
  • Concealed chain driven whisper quiet rotisserie motor system with a single speed, 6 RPM, 50 lbs. motor

The Hestan Aspire [VIDEO]

 

 

 

DCS

DCS Series 9 Built-In Grill

For many years, most manufacturers offered a single zone for searing, where DCS, has had full-surface searing capabilities.

By strategically placing the ported stainless-steel burners, ceramic rods, and the heavy gauge stainless steel burner box, DCS has even searing temperatures across the entire grill.

DCS Grates DCS Rods
DSC Grates DCS Rods

The rods also reduce flare-ups as the grease does not hit the burners directly.

Their main burners are all 304 Grade stainless steel and are rated at a high of 25,000 BTU per burner.

They have direct vertical ports to deliver the heat and they have a crossfire ignition system. This consistent and direct heat allows for high heat, 900 degrees for searing of meats and a low of 200 degrees for vegetables.

The following will review their newly released, Evolution Series 9.

DCS smoker open

DCS Charcoal Tray

This Series 9 Built-in 48" Grill adds a charcoal tray, so you can add the flavor and texture with the speed of gas.

BE1-48RC Built-In - $5,799

BE1-48RC

  • Secondary cooking surface allows you to use a wide repertoire of cooking styles and cater for a crowd
  • Intuitive lighting with stadium-style hood lights and bezel lit control dials
  • Easy to lift 90° hood for better access when cooking
  • Delivers 25,000 BTU total power per burner allowing you to precisely control heat from 300°F to 1100°F

Lynx

yaleappliance_Lynx_1

Lynx has possibly the best sear burner on the market and the most flexibility with temperatures from 285 degrees up to almost 1000 degrees.

Lynx’s new 23,000 BTU Trident™ infrared burner is fully variable, allowing you to go below 300 to over 1000 degrees and then dial it back to cook delicate seafood like scallops. 

The all-sear grill is fast with all infrared (direct heat) burners.

 

Infrared is a more intense, direct heat. You will cook faster but there is a learning curve.

Lynx IR burners-1

Lynx Infrared Burners

However, Lynx is changing their burners from cast brass to ceramic. Ceramic will not weather, but it is breakable...I would ask for a demo before buying one.

L54TRF Freestanding with Cart included - $9,779

Lynx Freestanding Grill

  • 54” Freestanding Grill
  • Trident™ Burner and Rotisserie
  • Three cast ceramic burners and one TRIDENT™ Burner (98,000 BTUs)
  • 1555-sq.-in. cooking surface (1110 primary, 445 secondary)
  • Premium smoker box included
  • Ceramic Briquettes facilitate even radiant heat distribution

Which Professional Grill is the Best?

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

Kalamazoo is the best grill with the ability to cook with wood, gas and charcoal, but $14,000 plus for a grill is steep.

The new Hestan grill has been impressive in cooking demos. The food is more evenly cooked due to their thicker diamond cut grates.

There are some decent specialty grills like the Lynx all sear for shear heat and speed.

DCS and the series 9 could be another very good grill to consider. It has a decent output. Their ceramic rod design is great for high heat temperatures.

The charcoal burner will add different flavor and texture than the other grills.

Remember: You can buy these grills in their less expensive series. The Hestan Aspire and DCS Heritage are the best of these lower priced pro grills.

How is a professional grill different from a regular grill?

There is no official definition of what makes a grill professional.  

However, there is a certain type of grill commonly called “pro”. This class of grill is all stainless with higher BTU output at 23-29,000 BTU per burner versus 6-10,000 on regular grills.

You are also buying features like the ability to rotisserie, sear or smoke your foods in most pro grills.

However, a pro grill is $5,500 and above versus Weber’s best grill with similar features at $2,749.

Is it truly better than the best Weber?

First, let's look at Weber's best grill, the Weber Summit S-670.

Weber Summit 7370001 - $2,749

WEBER-Summit-7370001
Features:

  • 74" Freestanding Gas Grill
  • 769 sq. in. Cooking Area
  • 6 Stainless Steel Burners
  • Stainless Steel Grates
  • Infrared Rotisserie
  • Sear Station
  • Side Burner
  • LP Gas

The specs are impressive at first glance. At half the price, it is a grill still worth considering, but it's not a professional grill and here's why.

BTU Output: The total BTU output of 60,000 is competitive compared to most professional grills, but it is achieved by six 10,000 BTU burners whereas pro grills have less burners but are more powerful at 25,000 BTU each to quickly cook, char, and sear.

Rotisserie: The Summit is good at 10,600 with the direct, infrared heat. However, pro grills are almost double at 18,000 BTU to quickly cook the meat. You can also use it as an ancillary burner to cook on the top shelf.

7370001BB_1800x1800-1

Weber Summit Rotisserie

Smoker: Weber has a 6,800 BTU smoker to infuse the meat with wood or other flavors. Kalamazoo and DCS have far better ways of smoking.

Grates: I never thought we would ever talk about grates in an article, but thicker grates hold the heat better than thinner stainless grates of regular grills.

Weber Summit Burners

Briquettes: Lynx, DCS, and Hestan have briquettes to increase heat to the surface and eliminate flare-ups for faster and safer grilling.

Do you need to spend $6,000-$24,000 versus $2,799 for a Weber?

Certainly not, but you will have quicker, more thorough BBQ grilling with a professional grill than even the best regular grill.

Pellet and Charcoal Grills

Before you buy any grill, you should look at all your alternatives. We cover this more thoroughly in other articles.

The two main grill alternatives are pellet and charcoal grills. 

Pellet Grills

Traeger Wood Pellet Grill

Pellet grills are powered by wood pellets, heated by burner and spread by a convection fan.

The upside to this grill is flavor.

Pellets are available in almost any flavor to enhance your food.

Pellet grills are not grills at all, because the top temperature is 500 degrees. A pro grill can heat to 900 degrees to sear and char your food.

Pellet grills do not have that capability or the ability to cook quickly.

Charcoal Grills

57052b19cd0ba_Summit_Charcoal_Grill_Center-4-1000x544-1

Charcoal grills have the heat and add a texture to food unlike gas grills. The charcoals can reach the high temperature of gas.

The downside to charcoal is adding and removing the ash. The temperature can vary, unlike the more precise grills.

(You may want to try our grill configurator to determine what is important to you).

Additional Resources

Download our BBQ Buying Guide with features and ratings of all the major brands. Over 520,000 people have already found answers in a Yale guide.

view our bbq buying guide

Related Articles:

WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST US?

A few review sites have placed this at the bottom of their articles. So here is our take: Our mission is to find reliable products for you to buy. Other review sites may say this as well.

However, we don’t love every product. Quite frankly, it costs us way too much money in repair costs to support less reliable brands.

In fact, we sell fewer brands than most appliance stores. Here is why:

We feel it is our responsibility to repair your appliances after you buy them.

We now have 30 service technicians, each averaging 8-10 calls a day Monday through Friday, plus another 110 on Saturday. That's over 30,000 service calls logged in one year.

The labor rates of fixing an appliance do not come close to the true cost in any product’s warranty period.

That is why no major retailer has a service department. It costs too much labor, money and time.

Our Blog is a bit different than most others you will read. We cannot write glowing reviews of unreliable products.

Hopefully, the bloggers and organizations who write such glowing product reviews for every brand consider servicing these products first. Only then they will understand the consequences of their marketing.

Steve Sheinkopf

My goal has always been simple: I want Yale to be the best retail experience anywhere. I have tried to create a compelling environment for customers and employees alike.

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.

Suggested Articles