Traeger Select Elite Pellet Grill And Smoker Review
Traeger Select Elite Pellet Grill Review
7 Key Features of the Traeger Select Elite Grill
1) Sizing and Portability
The assembly of this grill is a piece of cake. You only have to put a few different parts together. There's a detailed manual with pictures in the package though. Once set, the grill measures 57 x 25 x 46 inches. It's one of the large models from Traeger and for some good reasons – plenty of storage and cooking capacity.
In terms of weight, it goes up to 170 pounds. It's quite heavy and will not move if someone accidentally bumps into it. It comes with four caster wheels, so you can still push or pull it around – whether you want to take it out of the rain or you don't want to cook in direct sunlight. However, the wheels are quite thin and might make it challenging if you try to move it on a wet muddy ground.
Plus, if you're not the fitness type, you'll probably need some help. Once stopped, you can lock the casters to ensure it's not moving.
2) Flavor and Aroma
Traeger Elite works with wood pellets only. Pellets are free from binding agents, as well as fillers. The wooden smoke gives food a unique aroma that no other alternative can match. Furthermore, it heats food evenly and doesn't produce too much smoke.
Charcoal is a nightmare in terms of efficiency. While it's quite popular, it produces plenty of smoke – not so comfortable for your guests or neighbors. It's also quite pricey and doesn't cook food so evenly.
Finally, propane or gas will give your food a terrible taste. You may not feel it if you're used to it. However, once you become familiar with wood, you'll never want to switch again.
The grill features a spacious storage area to keep your wood pellets conveniently located under the grilling area.
3) Grilling Capacity and Space
Whether you have a large family or you like having friends over all the time, you want as much grilling space as possible. You don't want to do a few rounds. By the time you're done, the first round will no longer be hot.
Luckily, this model is built with space efficiency in mind. You have a grilling area of 586 square inches – quite impressive for a portable grill in this sizing segment.
Not sure how much it means? According to the manufacturer, the grill can take up to 20 burgers, 5 whole chickens, six large racks of ribs or 28 hot dogs at the same time. It depends on their size, as well as your organizational skills on the grill. All in all, your get-together guests will be served in no time.
4) Storage and Cooking Convenience
The pellet storage space of this grill makes this unit extremely appealing if you truly want everything in one place.
The storage room is split in two. You can easily fit two decently sized bags of pellets and you'll still have plenty of space. You can keep your grilling tools in the same place, so you have everything next to you when you start grilling.
The two shelves on the sides add to your cooking convenience. Forget about having a plate with raw food and moving it from the table to your grill. The same rule applies when you're done cooking. These shelves provide extra storage to rest your food prior or post cooking. You can keep raw food on one side and cooked food on the other side.
Both shelves are made from stainless steel. They're not just durable and likely to maintain their appearance, but cleaning them will also be a breeze. If there's one negative about this feature, that's the fact that shelves are not foldable or removable. They make moving the grill a bit inconvenient.
5) Temperature and Control
The integrated temperature control brings some extra convenience. You're less likely to find such features in outdoor models, but mostly in indoor appliances. Once the cover is down, you can set the temperature and the unit will maintain it.
It's extremely simple to do it due to the intuitive control panel. Basically, you have a dial with visible temperature settings. The selected temperature is then displayed on the small LED screen.
Obviously, an outdoor grill cannot be as efficient as an indoor one in maintaining temperature. However, according to most reviews, the temperature is stable within a 20 degree Fahrenheit range. The maximum temperature is 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
There are no other controls in the panel except for the on and off switch. Even if this is the first time you use such a model, you'll have no issues in cooking out of the box.
6) Versatility and Cooking Modes
In terms of versatility, you thought you wouldn't expect too much from a grill – wrong! While it may not come with a Traeger extra grill rack or random bells and whistles, this grill allows you to try out 6 different cooking methods.
Most commonly, you'll grill. You can grill with or without electricity. Sure, cooking without electricity will be a bit inconvenient – no temperature control, manual firing and the necessity to keep an eye on the food at all times.
On another note, you can also roast, bake, smoke, braise or barbecue. While advertised to be a grill, this model will quickly become one of your favorite cooking appliances for some good reasons – the possibility to cook outside and the cooking modes that allow you to do anything. Bake a pizza or an apple pie or smoke some ribs – you name it, this grill can do it.
In terms of extra features, there aren't any specific Traeger Select Elite accessories that you can buy separately. If this grill is too expensive for you, check out our article on the best grills for under 500.
7) Construction and Maintenance
Most of the grill is made from heavy duty steel. It's durable and likely to maintain its appearance overtime.
The grill grate is made from porcelain steel. It's made from 3 parts for more convenience as you clean it, it also features a nonstick surface. The side shelves are made from stainless steel.
Maintenance is quite simple with a wet cloth and a mild soap. Apart from the grill, most parts are not removable though, so you'll have to clean the unit on spot.
The Pros and Cons
Traeger Select Elite Wood Pellet Grill
Bottom line, this pellet grill can and will take your grilling experience to the next level. It's no surprise why there are so many positive Traeger Select Elite reviews out there.
3 words to sum it all, versatile, convenient and efficient.
What we Liked:
What we Disliked:
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