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Smart Grills: A Smart Way To Barbeque, If You Can Afford One

You don’t have enough apps on your phone or tablet, and you’re desperately searching for another smart appliance or device you can control from anywhere?
smart grill

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Don’t despair. We have the answer: a smart grill.
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Before you dismiss the idea of a smart grill as either a marketing gimmick or an intrusion on the hallowed American tradition of backyard barbecuing, here’s some surprising news. These things actually work well. And they can help, not hurt, the grillmaster who prides himself on his craft – but still overcooks the steaks once in a while.

Who Makes These Things?

Smart grills aren’t a flight of fancy from inventors trolling for money on Kickstarter. Big name companies in the grilling industry like Lynx, Char-Broil and Traeger (known for high-end wood pellet grills) all have their own smart grill on the market. Weber’s gotten into the act as well, not with a full-scale model but with a $100 Bluetooth add-on for Genesis II grills.
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Each manufacturer has its own take on the smart grill, and that’s reflected in the price of their products. Lynx, which produces pro-level equipment, offers a standalone unit that sells for more than $7500, while you can pick up the SmartChef from CharBroil for less than $800. One trend that’s interesting: many of the smart grills on the market, not just the Traeger, use wood pellets instead of charcoal or gas as fuel. Some of the grills have all sorts of fancy internal components like hidden convection fans or infrared burners, while others are simply “normal” grills you can monitor and control by your phone. Either way, they’re pretty darn convenient.
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What Does a Smart Grill Do?

The basic advantage to a smart grill is that you can get instantaneous updates on your meat as it cooks, and even have the grill notify you on your tablet or smartphone when it’s time to turn the meat. All of these BBQs will let you check the temperature and cooking time, and most allow you to adjust the heat during grilling. What’s more intriguing is that many of the interactive apps let you tell the grill what you’re cooking and how rare or well done you like your food, and it will take things from there. Some let you choose select recipes to cook directly from the app and the Lynx Smart Grill goes even further, allowing you to type in your own recipes, have the grill make them, and they’ll be shared with the entire Lynx community.
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The big question, of course, is how well these grills work – and the ones sold by name-brand manufacturers are quite good. Temperatures are usually spot on, and as long as your WiFi or Bluetooth connectivity (depending on the grill) is reliable you’ll have the ability to “watch” your food and be notified when it needs attention – while you’re inside making side dishes or watching the game.

Is a Smart Grill for You?

If you simply have to have the latest tech or if you love showing off new toys to your friends, absolutely. If you’re an occasional griller, probably not. But for those who can’t go through a summer without giving their grill a workout – and who have the money to shell out for a smart grill – it will spare you from continuous guard duty while your food cooks, it almost guarantees good results. It’s definitely much more than a marketing gimmick.
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