If you want to infuse natural wood flavor in your grilled food, it’s better to opt for a pellet smoker. Lucky for you, we have listed down the 10 best pellet smokers under $500 in the following review.
A pellet smoker can automate the entire grilling process with its advanced features, such as a PID controller and continuous auger feed.
It means you only need to set the temperature and required cooking option and let the pellet smoker do its magic. Subsequently, you no longer need to babysit the pellet smoker to monitor the cooking process.
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- The 10 Best Pellet Smokers Under $500
- #1. Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill
- #2. Z Grills ZPG-7002B 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
- #3. Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
- #4. Z Grills Wood Pellet Grill Smoker with 2020 Newest Digital Controls
- #5. PIT BOSS 700FB Pellet Grill
- #6. Camp Chef PG24MZG SmokePro Slide Smoker
- #7. Z GRILLS ZPG-6002B 2020 New Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
- #8. Z GRILLS ZPG-450A 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
- #9. PIT BOSS PB440D2 Wood Pellet Grill
- #10. Green Mountain Davy Crockett WiFi Control Portable Wood Pellet Grill
- How to Choose The Best Pellet Smoker for the Money
The 10 Best Pellet Smokers Under $500
#1. Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill
The Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill features an automatic auger dispenser and a pellet hopper of 18 pounds capacity. Meaning, it stores more pellets inside the grill and automatically feeds them to produce more heat and smoke.
This versatile smoker comes with meat probes to monitor temperatures of different types of meat. Aside from that, the on-board digital thermometer also measures the ambient temperature.
The PID generation 2 digital controller allows you to set the temperature between 160F and 500F degrees.
Moreover, the dial allows you to toggle between different cooking modes. The LED display provides all the information related to the cooking process to monitor the cooking process conveniently.
Besides, the convenient power failure restart automatically turns on the smoker if an unexpected power outage occurs. Thus, you don’t have to start the cooking process from scratch by re-selecting the settings.
The two out of four legs come with wheels allowing you to transport it conveniently from one place to another. Additionally, it includes a pellet rake, a drip bucket, and a side shelf.
You can quickly dispose of the ash courtesy of the one-pull ash cleanout system.
Lastly, the three-year warranty ensures a reliable investment.
- 18 pounds of pellet hopper capacity
- Total cooking space of 573 square inches
- 25,000 BTU per hour
- 160F to 500F degrees temperature range
- Includes ask collection system
- Comes with meat probes
- Lesser smoke at a lower temperature
- Difficult in maintaining the set temperature
#2. Z Grills ZPG-7002B 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
The Z Grills ZPG-7002B 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker is an 8-in-1 smoker that can grill, bake, roast, braise, and sear, char-grill, and barbeque. Z Grills has been manufacturing pellet grills for more than 30 years.
This smart smoker comes with a built-in auger, which adjusts the pellet feed rate to produce consistent heat and smoke. Additionally, the thermostat allows you to regulate the temperature between 180F and 450F degrees during the cooking cycle.
This spacious smoker features a total of 700 square inches of cooking space. It’s further divided into a primary cooking area of 504 square inches and 190 square inches of the warming rack. Meaning, you can grill up to 35 burgers at the same time.
By the way, you can easily remove the upper rack to increase the main surface’s height.
Moreover, it comes with durable steel construction and an upgraded digital control system to elevate your grilling experience. The powder-coated finish can easily withstand rust and corrosion. It also includes a bottom storage shelf so that you can place all your utensils in one place.
The grease bucket allows you to gather all the drained grease to facilitate cleaning.
- Heavy-duty material
- 8-in-1 functionality
- Fan convection cooking
- 700 square inches grilling area
- Three-year warranty
- 20-pound hopper capacity
- Not recommended for searing
- Difficult to remove pellet wastes
#3. Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
The Z GRILLS ZPG-7002E 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker features a fully automated grill with 8-in-1 functionality
The advanced temperature control system regulates the number of pellets passed from the hopper into the combustion tube. Subsequently, it optimizes both temperature and fuel consumption. It’s better to increment 5F degrees every 10 minutes to achieve better results.
This spacious smoker offers a cooking space of 700 square inches. Additionally, the stainless-steel finish gives it a modern look, making it an attractive addition to your patio. Thus, the metal ensures even distribution of heat throughout the cooking grates.
The electronic AutoStart ignition doesn’t require you to fire up an actual flame, thus preventing a fire. This electronic start-up, when coupled with digital temperature control, completely automates the grilling process. Besides, the real-time LED displays the temperature on a well-lit screen.
You can easily set the temperature anywhere between 180F and 475F degrees. In this way, you can use this multi-functional smoker to grill, bake, roast, BBQ, and sear.
The Z Grill ZPG-7002E comes with a hopper capacity of 20 pounds to facilitate multiple grilling sessions.
- Drip Tray
- Auto ignites pellets
- Digital controller to regulate temperature
- Eigh cooking processes
- 20 pounds hopper capacity
- 700 square inches of grilling area
- 180F to 475F degrees temperature range
- Not best for searing
- Difficult to clean ash and pellet wastes
#4. Z Grills Wood Pellet Grill Smoker with 2020 Newest Digital Controls
The Z Grills Wood Pellet Grill Smoker with 2020 Newest Digital Controls features the main grilling area of 513 square inches. In addition to that, you can also utilize its warming rack of 187 square inches.
Consequently, you can quickly cook six chickens or five racks of ribs, or 32 burgers at the same time.
You can set the temperature between the range of 180F and 450F degrees. Moreover, the fan-forced convection cooking ensures versatile cooking processes of roasting, braising, baking, smoking, and many more.
After the cooking session, you can set the temperature knob to the shutdown cycle. In this way, the induction fan keeps running for the next 10 minutes to burn the excess pellets in the firepot. Later on, both the controller and the fan power off.
This stylish smoker comes with a brass-colored coating on both the stainless steel grill door and hopper cover.
Besides, it features a one-button start-up and temperature control to eliminate starter fluid. The automatic electric feed system maintains the heat within 10F degrees of the set temperature. Meaning, you don’t have to check the smoker after every five minutes or so manually.
The waste oil collector helps you in cleaning after the cooking session.
- Smart smoke technology
- 180F to 450F degrees temperature range
- 8-in-1 cooking functionality
- Three-year warranty
- 20 pounds hopper capacity
- Includes shutdown cycle
- Expensive especially for beginners
#5. PIT BOSS 700FB Pellet Grill
The PIT BOSS 700FB Pellet Grill offers porcelain-coated cast iron grids and a digitally controlled burn system. It facilitates you with eight cooking functions, including grilling, smoking, baking, searing, roasting, braising, barbeque, and char-grilling.
This all-rounder grill comes with 700 square inches of cooking area, 20 pounds hopper capacity, and a digital control board. Moreover, the wheels are attached to two legs to facilitate transportation. The second-tier rack provides additional space for warming the food.
By the way, you can set the temperature between 180F and 500F degrees. The highest range is excellent to bake flatbreads and pizzas; however, the lowest temperature settings facilitate slow-cooking of pork.
Additionally, it ensures a heat output of 40,000 BTUs. The hopper can hold up to 40 pounds of pellets, which is enough to give you 40 hours of carefree grilling time.
However, the pellet consumption is directly proportional to the temperature. In case of high temperature, you can expect lesser cooking time with the same amount of pellets.
- 170F to 600F degrees temperature range
- Electric ignition
- Fan-forced air acceleration
- 8-in-1 cooking functionality
- Can cook meals for four to six people
- 40 pounds of hopper capacity
- Complicated temperature control
- Pit Boss pellets produce better results
#6. Camp Chef PG24MZG SmokePro Slide Smoker
The Camp Chef PG24MZG SmokePro Slide Smoker features a Gen 2 PID controller with smoke settings running from one to ten. The exclusive ask cleanout system allows you to remove the ash simply by pulling the lever.
It features a total cooking area of 811 square inches courtesy of the dual upper shelf. Moreover, you can easily remove and adjust the upper shelf. By the way, you can quickly toast 30 burgers or six racks of ribs simultaneously.
The digital controller, along with two stainless temperature probes, regulates and optimizes the temperature. Now you don’t need to worry about checking the remaining pellet and temperature again and again.
Besides, the slide and grill technology features a mobile deflector to pave the way for the pellets for the direct and indirect flame. You can pull the knob available on the left side to enable the direct heat. On the other hand, you can simply switch it back to its previous position for indirect heating.
- Two stainless steel temperature probes
- 811 square inches of cooking area
- Patented ash cleanout
- Dual upper shelf
- Easy to assemble
- Requires a lot of power to start up
#7. Z GRILLS ZPG-6002B 2020 New Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
The Z GRILLS ZPG-6002B 2020 New Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker features auto-start ignition and digital auto temperature control. Not only that, it facilitates eight cooking options with its advanced pellet grill technology.
The automated electric feed maintains the temperature within 10F degrees of the set temperature between 180F and 450F degrees. Not only that, the temperature can go up to 1000F degrees after opening the air door to sear. All you need to do is enable the searing mode and adjust the temperature control at the maximum level.
It features a stylish cart with locking caster wheels to keep it stable during cooking—Moreover, the specially designed waste oil collector facilities convenient cleaning.
The copper color gives a modern look to this stainless steel smoker. The metallic built can withstand corrosion and rust.
This capacious grill and smoker offers a cooking area of 601 square inches comprising 333 square inches main grilling area. You can keep your food warm on its 240 square inches smoking/warming rack.
Besides, it includes a foldable working shield with a rustproof cover and racks.
- Incorporates PID technology
- 180F to 450F temperature range
- 8-in-1 functionality
- 601 square inches of cooking space
- Searing enabled
- Prompt customer service
- Flimsy temperature control
#8. Z GRILLS ZPG-450A 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker
The Z GRILLS ZPG-450A 2020 Upgrade Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker offers fan-forced convection cooking to optimize the cooking cycle’s temperature. Additionally, it features 25,000 BTUs per hour to grill, bake, barbeque, smoke, braise, and roast.
This advanced smoker comes with an automatic electric feed system to facilitate startup. Moreover, it also regulates the smoke and heat to minimize manual monitoring.
Besides, the waste oil collector ensures easy clean-up after use.
The heavy-duty body is made of stainless steel to resist corrosion and rust. It also features a classic chimney, a removable font shelf, and all-terrain wheels on two legs.
This multi-functional smoker allows you to adjust the temperature between 180F and 450F degrees.
It features the main cooking area of 324 square inches and a warming rack of 128 square inches.
- 25,000 BTU power
- 450 square inches of cooking area
- Two wheels for portability
- Robust stainless-steel body
- Three-year warranty
- Hopper capacity of 15 pounds
- 8-in-1 functionality
- Comparatively smaller grilling area
- Not recommended for large families
#9. PIT BOSS PB440D2 Wood Pellet Grill
The PIT BOSS PB440D2 Wood Pellet Grill features a premium gauge stainless steel construction with two durable wheels for convenient transportation. Besides, it features porcelain-coated cooking grates offering a cooking area of 465 square inches.
The digital control board monitors the temperature between the range of 180F and 500F degrees. By the way, this dynamic temperature range is perfect for facilitating different cooking styles such as baking, searing, grilling, and many more.
Additionally, it offers an electronic ignition system with an auto shut-off feature. This powerful smoker guarantees a power output of 40,000 BTUs per hour.
This smart smoker comes with additional features such as a serving tray, side shelf combo, bottle opener, and a solid bottom shelf.
Lastly, it comes with a warranty of one year to ensure a safe investment.
- Removable side shelf
- Two large wheels
- Digital control board with LED display
- Fan-forced convection cooking
- Direct and Indirect heating
- 465 square inches cooking area
- Small hopper capacity of five pounds only
#10. Green Mountain Davy Crockett WiFi Control Portable Wood Pellet Grill
The Green Mountain Davy Crockett WiFi Control Portable Wood Pellet Grill is an advanced smoker with a thermal sensor and WiFi connectivity. It includes a meat probe, serving tray, and a peaked lid for rib racks.
The WiFi compatibility makes this smoker stand out among the rest. You can easily pair it with your iOS or Android smart device and monitor the cooking progress remotely.
This compact smoker offers a smaller footprint with 219 square inches of cooking space. Moreover, the side shelf comes with built-in hooks to hold kitchen utensils.
On a downside, the auger can slow or jam up if left unsupervised during slow smoking at lower temperatures. Besides, the hopper can hold only nine pounds of pellets.
- Portable power options
- Sense-mate thermal sensor
- Includes a meat probe
- Peaked lid for rib racks
- Finicky WiFi technology
- Difficult temperature control for a longer period
- Smaller cooking area
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How to Choose The Best Pellet Smoker for the Money
Read along to learn about the factors that help you to make an informed decision before buying the most suitable pellet smoker for the money.
Working Surface and Capacity
Size matters. Don’t think that a bigger size and working surface would do you any good. It means that you’ll end up wasting pellets and, subsequently, more money.
Capacity is directly proportional to the size of your family. Meaning, you can opt for a small-sized pellet smoker if you have a small or medium-sized family. Obviously, a smaller size is much more manageable and portable.
However, if you love to host lavish BBQ parties in your patio or backyard, it’s better to select a large-sized pellet smoker to fulfill your smoking requirements.
Another subfactor of work surface and capacity is the availability of shelves or compartments. In this way, you can place all your sauces, ingredients, and cooking utensils in the same place.
It plays an essential role in your choice of a pellet smoker. Whether you use wood chips or pellets, you should easily place them in the chute.
Here, accessibility is a diverse term, including stacking and monitoring the remaining pellets during the cooking process. For instance, front-stacking-styled pellet smokers are much less complicated, giving you access to all the racks.
Of course. You should check if the wheels can be locked or not. Or electrical components are safe and covered from snow and downpour.
Moreover, the handles should be able to provide a firm grip. Mostly, wood handles tend to break quickly, while steel handles last longer.
You should consider additional features such as WiFi capability, meat probes availability, grilling options, and most importantly, warranty.
To sum up, a pellet smoker is a versatile appliance that can barbecue, smoke, grill, roast, braise, and bake. Not only that, it infuses a traditional woody and smoky flavor in your grilled meat.
All you need to do is preheat the pellet grills for 10 to 15 minutes, and you are all set to cook crispy chicken wings or braise short ribs.
Whether you are an enthusiast griller/smoker or a beginner, you can easily opt for any of the above best pellet grills under $500.