Being raised on smoking meat, it is in my blood. It is both a science and an art; and something that I take vey seriously. With my 20 plus years of experience, I have been able to become a master smoker and have learned that having the best tool always leads to the creation of perfectly smoked foods. For many, using a pellet grill is an easy way to enjoy smoked foods with a consistent and authentic flavor. We at Smokey Steak Ranch have reviewed the pellet grills on the market, comparing size, ease of use, cost and special features to bring you a complete list of the best wood pellet grills under $500.

Our Top Recommended Pellet Grills Under $500

Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill

Camp Chef SmokePro Stainless DLX Pellet Grill w/New PID Gen 2 Digital Controller
  • Our Rating
  • Best Overall
  • Cooking surface: 570 sq. in

    Hopper Capacity: 18 lbs

    Overall Weight: 140 lbs

    Temperature: from 160°F to 500°F

    Warranty: 3 years

Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett

Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill - WIFI enabled
  • Our Rating
  • Best Budget
  • Cooking surface: 216 sq. in

    Hopper Capacity: 9 lbs

    Overall Weight: 68 lbs

    Temperature: from 150°F to 550°F

    Warranty: 3 years limited

Traeger Pellet Grills Tailgater 20 Grill

Traeger Pellet Grills TFB30LUB 33698 Tailgater 20 Blue Grill
  • Our Rating
  • Best for Tailgating
  • Cooking surface: 300 sq. in

    Hopper Capacity: 8 lbs

    Overall Weight: 76 lbs

    Temperature: Up to 450°F

    Warranty: 3 years U.S. only

Product ImageProduct NameSurface (sq.in)Heat DegreesTo Review
Camp Chef SmokePro Stainless DLX Pellet Grill1. Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill570to 500ºF
Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill - WIFI enabled2. Davy Crockett Pellet Grill from Green Mountain Grills216to 550°F
Traeger Grills Tailgater 20 Portable Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker - Grill, Smoke, Bake, Roast, Braise, and BBQ (Bronze)3. Traeger Pellet Grills Tailgater 20 Blue300to 450ºF
Z GRILLS Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker with Digital Temperature Controls, 450 sq. in. Cooking Capacity - Grill, Smoke, Bake, Sear, Roast, Braise and BBQ4. Z GRILLS ZPG-450A Model Wood Pellet Grill & Smoker450to 450ºF
Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker Pellet Grill and Smoker, 45" x 49" x 39.4", Black5. Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker450to 475ºF
Cuisinart CPG-6000 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker6. Cuisinart CPG-6000 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker513to 450ºF
Camp Chef Pursuit 20 Portable Pellet Grill Smoker, Stainless Steel (PPG20) - Smart Smoke - Slide and Grill Technology7. Camp Chef PPG20 Pursuit Portable Pellet Grill500to 500ºF
Z GRILLS Wood Pellet Grill 2019 Model 8-in-1 BBQ Smoker with PID Controller for Outdoor Cooking 550SQIN Barbecue Area 10LB Hopper (ZPG-550B)8. Z Grills ZPG-550B Wood Pellet Grill530to 450ºF

List of 8 Best Pellet Grills for Under $500 on the Market Today:

Review

The Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill has definitely been designed with the home chef in mind. It features dual temperature sensors and a digital temperature display; both of which makes the smoking process easier that the average smoker grills.

It is also very easy to use and perfect for those individuals that are new or just learning the arts and sciences of smoking meats; making the cost a bit over 500 bucks, a great value for the money.

Pros

  • Automatic pellet auger dispenses when needed and shuts down when done
  • The temperature control is flawless and works perfectly for consistency while cooking
  • Easy to assemble, use and clean

Cons

  • The grease pan is on the smaller side and may need to be emptied more often
  • Priced over five hundred bucks, but you can get this grill on sales under 500 bucks.

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

Overall, we consider this SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill from Camp Chef to be a great buy. Its best features are the dual temperature sensors and the digital temperature display; both of which allow for the highest standard of temperature control.

This will come in handy for all users, but particularly for those individuals who are new to the smoking process. In addition, the ashes clean out combined with the hopper clean out makes it very easy to clean and maintain.

Review

The Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill is a portable pellet grill that is bang for your buck. This grill comes with a 12V adapter and has Wi-Fi capabilities.

The legs fold up and can be used as handles for easy transport, as well as set up and clean up. The Davy Crockett Pellet grill is perfect for tailgating at the big game or a camping trip with the family.

Pros

  • Temperature and cook times can be controlled using app on your cell phone
  • Extremely versatile, includes meat probe, peaked lid and convenience tray with utensil hooks
  • It weighs only 57 pound, making it perfect of use anywhere you happen to be

Cons

  • The smaller stature of this grill may not make it appropriate for larger families or large groups/gatherings

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

Overall, we consider this Davy Crocket Pellet Grill to be one of the best pellet grills for under 400. It offers a tremendous value for the cost, particularly when you take into account its amazing versatility. This grill is extremely adaptable for almost any location or gathering.

Review

The Tailgater 20 pellet grill from Treager is a product that offers consistent results in cooking your meat. It helps you to achieve the “fire wood” taste without the work of cooking over an open flame.

This grill is extremely versatile as well, allowing for an all-in-one device that grills, smokes, bakes, roasts, braises, and barbeques.

Pros

  • Durable steel construction offering a long lifespan
  • Capable of grilling, baking, roasting and smoking all in one device
  • Easy to assemble and use

Cons

  • The thermostat of this grill can fail at times causing the temperature to rise and fall

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

We consider the Tailgater 20 to a be a top contender for anyone who is looking to purchase a smoker or grill. It has tremendous versatility and allows for one to experiment with many different ways to cook their meals.

All of its features allow for easy use and consistent results. When you consider that this grill has a purchase price under $500, it is no wonder why we consider this item to be the best pellet grill for the price as.

Review

The Z GRILLS ZPG-450A grill is very easy to use and clean. It has the capability to cook meat several different ways, and has a digital controller that keeps temperatures maintain throughout the entire time food is cooking.

Pros

  • Versatility to Grill, smoke, bake, roast, sear, braise, barbeque and char-grill food to perfection
  • Comes with a 3-year warranty
  • Comes with 2 wheels and 2 wheels with brake making it easy to move around

Cons

  • The smoker setting lags at times in keeping a steady temperature through duration of cooking

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

For the this grill, we consider it to an excellent buy for a beginner or avid griller or smoker.

With its extreme versatility, portability and ease of use, anyone can become a master chef at the helm of this device. This wood pellet grill from Z Grills will help you learn the art of smoking and the science of creating the perfect meal with every use.

Review

The Cuisinart CPG-4000 Pellet Grill and Smoker is extremely versatile offering you ways to braise, smoke, grill, bake, barbeque and even slow cook.

It automatically manages the temperature for an even cook throughout no matter what items are on the grill. This, along with its extensive list of additional features, allows for this grill and smoker to be considered a great buy for those individuals looking for a budget-friendly option.

Pros

  • Included weather resistant grill cover
  • Side shelf is stationary while lower shelf is folds down for easy storage when not in use
  • Digital display for temperature control
  • Electric ignition for easy start up

Cons

  • The smoker has a tendency to clog up with ash after several uses

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

The versatility and large capacity grill area makes the Cuisinart CPG-4000 Wood BBQ Grill & Smoker perfect for large families or those who enjoy entertaining on a regular basis.

It has been designed with ease of use, portability and capacity in mind, making it a great buy. This grill and smoker will provide anyone with the ability to craft perfect meals for their family and guests.

Review

The Cuisinart CPG-6000 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker contains an extra large grill area that allows you to grill a large amount of food items all at once; making it perfect for larger families or large group gatherings.

Pros

  • Large capacity allows for a ton of food to be grilled at once
  • Made with heavy duty steel for durability
  • Large storage space to house your accessories, wood pellets, etc.

Cons

  • There is no ash container, making for difficult clean out

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

Overall, the Cuisinart CPG-6000 Pellet Grill and Smoker is a pretty good buy. It has excellent versatility and is very easy to use, which are features that will be much appreciated by any griller no matter how experienced.

This wood pellet grill from Cuisinart is perfect for large parties, or those individuals that are looking for an all-in-one grill.

Review

The Camp Chef Pursuit 20 Pellet Grill Smoker contains the ability to sear your meat with its lever activated searing feature. It also contains a larger capacity cooking area as well as digital controls.

It has super affordable purchase price, which we believe to be a bargain when you its extensive list of features and capabilities.

Pros

  • Extremely portable with fold up legs and wheels built into its base
  • Contains an ash clean out system for easy clean up and maintenance
  • Designed with two LED thermometers for superior temperature monitoring
  • Comes with a three year warranty

Cons

  • Searing feature is unable to sear the entire grill at once
  • Grill tends to be a little on the heavy side

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

Overall, we consider this grill to be a great option if you are looking for portability and the ability to sear meat within your grill/smoker. It is easy to use and clean.

Finally, its dual LED temperature probes allows you to test the temperatures without having to sacrifice heat and smoke from opening the chamber.

Review

The ZPG-550B 7-in-1 BBQ Smoker with PID Controller for Outdoor Cooking by Z Grills is fueled by 100% natural barbeque wood pellets; providing a “wood-fire” taste to your food.

It contains a digital control that ignites your grill with ease and provides an easy way to control your cooking temperature.

In addition, this grill features convection cooking ability allowing for many different options of cooking your meats, including grilling, roasting, braising, and baking in addition to smoking.

Pros

  • Digital controller to maintain temperature through entire cooking time
  • Can accommodate larger families and gatherings with large groups of people
  • Comes with a lifetime guarantee

Cons

  • The temperature probe has been known to fail from time to time

Overall Smokey Steak Ranch Review

With a purchase price under 500 bucks, we consider this ZPG-550B Pellet Grill from Z Grills to be the best budget pellet grill.

It has a larger capacity and is extremely versatile, making it easy for a first time user to become familiar with smoking as well as other ways of creating the perfect flavor.

Conclusion

When trying to decide on the best tool for your trade, it is best to consider all features and how they compare to the ultimate goal that you are hoping to achieve. It is imperative to consider the capacity, temperatures, easy of use, and mobility.

We consider the Junior Elite Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker from Traeger to be the grill on our list that will give you the best bang for your buck. It is easy to use, is extremely durable and will allow you to perfect not only your smoking abilities but several other awesome ways to cook your food.

If you believe that the Traeger Junior Elite grill may be a bit out of your price range, consider the next best grill that we suggest to purchase, the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill.

With its Wi-Fi capabilities and its extremely portable design, this Davy Crockett grill will be sure to be your best friend at any event or outing.

We consider this list to be the best grills under $500 that you can purchase as all grill offers versatility, mobility, and excellent value for your money. For any questions or more details, reach out to us at Smokey Steak Ranch through our website.