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Best Brazier

Nothing delivers that OMG flavor to your foods like cooking over an open flame. Here are our picks for the best braziers you can find online.

If your only knowledge of the word “brazier” produces images of special sauces, sesame seeds buns, and golden arches, then you’re in for a treat. A brazier is in fact a sided vessel that dates back hundreds of years and burns wood or charcoal to cook foods and/or provide heat. So, it’s much more than a fire pit but a lot less than a 12,000 BTU propane barbecue. And the benefits are plenty including the sights, sounds, and smells of tending to foods over an open flame and of course that over-the-top, slightly charred and smoky flavor it brings.

What Are the Benefits to Using a Brazier?

If we’re comparing a brazier to propane or electric barbecues, the difference is all in the taste. Nothing delivers that OMG flavor to your foods like cooking over an open flame. And whether you opt for charcoal briquettes or lean toward some of the more exotic woods such as mesquite, maple, or hickory, your foods will enjoy a rich, custom smokiness that you just won’t get when using a propane or butane fuel. They can also be portable, easy to use, and don’t require tanks to be filled before you head out.

What to Look for When Buying a Brazier

Materials

The best material for your brazier comes down to use. Will you be enjoying it as a year-round brazier/fire pit? Or more like a seasonal barbecue? Should it be somewhat portable for easy storage or highly portable to pack up and take camping? For long-term fire-pit cooking, look for options such as cast aluminum that won’t rust or even cast iron which can store heat for a great ongoing source of warmth long after the fire has died down. Steel is another option that is gaining and popularity and produces a hard-wearing, year-round brazier that resists rust.

Design

Unlike their one-touch-and-you’re-ready-to-grill counterparts, braziers require oxygen to keep the flame burning. So, if you’re considering a brazier that’s designed more like a barbecue than a fire pit, and includes a tight-fitting lid to seal the cook surface and control temperatures, look for easy-to-use, controllable vents or dampers around the base. Open them and you stoke the fire for greater heat, close them to shut down the flames when you’ve finished use.

Cook Surface

It’s important to space foods out on an open grill and as a general rule of thumb, you should allow approximately 72 square inches of grilling space per person. For a family of four, that means around 288 square inches. And while it’s easy to multiply the length by the width to get total square inches on a standard grill surface, many fire bowls have round grills. What to do? Simply multiple Pi (or 3.14) by 1/2 the diameter and again by 1/2 the diameter. E.g., for an 18-inch grill, it would be 3.14 x 9 x 9 for a surface of 254 square inches.

Top 6 Braziers

Elly Portable Design Brazier

Best for Portability

For those who love to camp, picnic, tailgate, or simply don’t have the outdoor space needed for a larger, permanent barbecue, this light-weight fold-up unit is the perfect solution. Made from heat-resistant steel with a chrome-plated grill and charcoal rack, it collapses down flat for when it’s time to pack up and call it a day and even converts into its own handy carrying case. Despite its smaller size, this brazier features a full 228-square inch grilling surface which is ideal for prepping a full meal for three or tasty sides for a crowd. And because it’s fueled by charcoal, you enjoy a longer, steadier heat. So, for those who love to entertain, you can keep the party going and the food flowing, for hours.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

For those who want to enjoy the natural char-broiled flavors of foods that come straight off the grill, but lack the space needed for a permanent unit, this collapsible, steel-construction option is a great choice.

Pros:

  • Durable steel construction
  • Chrome-plated grills
  • Folds flat for carrying
  • Includes charcoal rack

Cons:

  • Must cool down before packing

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Steel

Grill Surface: 228 square inches

Weight: 7.73 pounds

Fuel Source: Charcoal

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Cuisinart Portable Steel Brazier Grill with 150-square inch Cooking Surface

Best for Backyard Barbecues

If your outdoor cooking takes place on a smallish patio or balcony, then having a tidy little brazier that can char-broil an entire dinner for two has to be an absolute essential. And with this smart-looking, barbecue set, you get not only a lightweight portable grill that packs up easily for compact stowing, but a sizeable cook surface that offers a 150-square inch chrome-plated grill. An enamel-coated firebox not only looks great but includes a triple locking lid for easy, mess-free transport as well as a generously sized ash-catcher to protect tabletops and make clean-up a breeze. Best of all, dual-venting gives you full control over airflow and cook temperatures. Take it camping, on picnics, or load it up with your favorite burgers and sausages for tailgate parties.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

Lightweight and compact, this steel grill is the perfect choice for those who enjoy outdoor dining anywhere, anytime. There’s no bulky equipment, it packs up neatly, and offers safe, easy control over the cooking process.

Pros:

  • Lightweight and space-saving
  • Enamel-on-steel construction
  • Triple-lock lid
  • 150-square inch chrome grill plate

Cons:

  • Smaller grill surface

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Steel

Grill Surface: 150-square inches

Weight: 2 pounds

Fuel Source: Charcoal

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BEAU JARDIN Portable Enamel-on-Steel Brazier with 255-square inch Grill Surface

Best for Family Meals

When family dining moves outdoors, you need a top-quality brazier that’s big enough to cook up an entire meal, but small enough to tuck neatly onto your back deck or patio. And this is the one. Beneath this hard-wearing enamel-on-steel bowl and lid is over 255 square inches of grilling surface as well as adjustable air vents for perfect temperature control. There are also a number of clever touches such as raised, integrated handles on the wire cook grill so you can comfortably lift hot, finished foods off the coals as well as a set of durable wheels and heat-resistant outer handles that make repositioning the unit during use, a safe process. A handy wire rack is affixed to the base and is perfect for storing condiments, oven mitts, or your favorite snacks.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

The larger cook surface of this barbecue makes it a perfect choice for small families who have big appetites but not a lot of outdoor space. It’s well-built, portable and compact enough for easy storage.

Pros:

  • Durable steel construction
  • Adjustable temperature control vents
  • Durable dual wheels
  • Handy storage rack

Cons:

  • Requires assembly

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Porcelain-enameled steel

Grill Surface: 255 square inches

Weight: 11.75 pounds

Fuel Source: Charcoal

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BALI Solid Steel Combination Brazier / Fire Pit with 250-square inch Grill Surface

Best for Grilling with Ambience

If you want a brazier that not only char-broils food to perfection but also provides a little extra warmth and ambience to your outdoor gatherings, then this barbecue/fire pit combo is what you’ve been looking for. Made from hard-wearing steel, this wood/charcoal/briquette-burning unit features solid stabilizing legs for a sturdier base along with that little extra height so helpful when tending foods. The adjustable 250-square inch grill swings out and across the open flame for perfect char-broiling and because it swivels a full 360-degrees, you can safely load your favorite foods away from the heat, then simply use the poker to swing it back into place for cooking. The ventilated fire bowl walls and a raised frame rack allow oxygen to circulate around and under your wood or charcoal, for optimal grilling conditions.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

For those who love to entertain, this combination brazier/fire pit is the perfect way to grill up a full dinner without having to leave the party. Enjoy the warmth and crackling ambience of an open fire, while you cook your favorite foods.

Pros:

  • Combination fire pit/brazier
  • Uses wood, charcoal, or briquettes
  • 360-degree swivel grill plate
  • Steel construction

Cons:

  • No dampers to control heat

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Steel

Grill Surface: 250 square inches

Weight: 27 pounds

Fuel Source: Wood, charcoal, or briquettes

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Char-Griller Triple-Wall Steel Brazier with Dual Dampers and Temperature Gauge

Best Long-Wearing Brazier

For those who leave nothing to chance, this high-end brazier with an exterior temperature gauge delivers fool-proof results. The uniquely designed solid steel construction of this charcoal-fuelled griller features triple wall construction for optimal high-heat retention and more consistent cooking or smoking process. For those who are more hands-on, you’ll appreciate dual upper and lower dampers that let you adjust air flow, control the flame, and achieve that precise interior temperature. A generous 153-square inch grill is perfect for dinner for two, or to cook up a series of tasty snacks and sides when entertaining friends in your backyard, campsite, or when cheering on your favorite team at a tailgate party. And with a porcelain-coated steel interior and lower ash pan to collect debris, clean-ups are always easy.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

The solid construction of this triple-walled barbecue makes it a perfect investment for those who want a quality, no-fail unit that they can enjoy for years.

Pros:

  • Triple-wall steel construction
  • Upper and lower dampers
  • High heat resistant
  • Exterior temperature gauge

Cons:

  • Heavier weight

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Steel with powder coating

Grill Surface: 153 square inches

Weight: 37 pounds

Fuel Source: Charcoal

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Eprosmin Combination Steel Brazier / Fire Pit with 450 square-inch Grill and Domed Spark Screen

Best for Entertaining

If a relaxing evening for you is to grill up a great family dinner, then relax by an open fire, this heavy-duty steel brazier/fire pit combo is worth checking out. What makes it a standout is that you can use multiple fuel sources. Choose between firing up a bed of charcoals, opting for aromatic mesquite or hickory wood, or simply tossing on some firewood and toasting marshmallows. And busy households will appreciate safety features such as a domed mesh spark screen that prevents flying embers as well as the bumper bar that encircles the entire unit to protect kids, pets, or passing guests from brushing against the hot fire bowl. The generous grill offers 450-square inches of cooking space while multi-hole aeration in the base and raised grate to circulate air continuously for a robust, long-lasting fire.

Who Should Buy This Brazier?

The large grill surface is ideal for cooking an entire family meal and when you consider the added safety features, it makes this fire pit/brazier combo a great choice for those who love to entertain or have a household with younger kids.

Pros:

  • Steel construction
  • Extra-large cook surface
  • Aerated base for longer fires
  • Protective spark screen

Cons:

  • Can’t control cook temperatures

Specs for Comparison:

Material: Steel

Grill Surface: 450 square inches

Weight: 21 pounds

Fuel Source: Wood or charcoal

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Bottom Line

While your typical propane, butane, or natural gas barbecue offers that instant flame for quick and convenient cooking, nothing beats the flavor of char-broiled foods. And with today’s braziers that have been designed for modern-day lifestyles, there’s never been a better time to include this handy griller in your arsenal of outdoor equipment. From camping to tailgate parties, to picnics and pint-sized patios, these versatile barbecues are lightweight, easy to use, and with a little practice, deliver a delicious flavor to all your favorite foods.

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