Is there anything better than spending the day on the water, grilling your favorite food and enjoying it with your friends and family? Hardly. You can only make it better if you have the best pontoon boat grill. If you don’t the perfect day can quickly become not so perfect.
There are so many marine grill choices on the market that it is hard to pick one if you don’t do the research.
Thankfully, we have done exactly that.
Below are some of the best pontoon grills you should consider when looking for quality, reliability and above all, great food.
Types of Boat Grills
There are three types of boat grills. They are:
Each of these grills has its advantages, so let us look at those quickly before moving on to find out which is the best boat grill.
- The main thing to know about grill types is that propane and electric are easier and safer to use than charcoal. Propane is the cheapest.
- Electric is the most eco-friendly but requires an onboard electric supply.
- If your priority is food, then charcoal often tastes best to barbecue purists.
Best Pontoon Boat Charcoal Grill
For many barbecue purists, charcoal is the most delicious way to grill on land and on the water. The various flavors of different smokey woods add to the taste in the food that is cooked on it.
The main downside to grilling with a charcoal boat grill is that it is going to take a while. Charcoal boat grills are not for impatient people. It takes some time for the coals to light. Also, it’s harder to control the temperature.
Unfortunately, charcoal is also the most dangerous type of grill you can use on a boat.
Charcoal is much more likely to cause a fire on a boat than either propane or electric grills. If you have a charcoal grill or decide to buy one, make sure to follow all safety instructions.
One of the most convenient types of charcoal grills attaches to a metal rod with a clamp. It can be mounted on any part of the boat’s railing. When the grill is lit, be sure to swing it out over the water so that sparks and live coals do not drop onto the deck of the boat.
- Charcoal tastes better than propane and electric
- Charcoal takes longer to heat up
- Charcoal can be dangerous, safety precautions are needed
- Make sure to position mounted grills over water while in use
Magma Products Marine Kettle Charcoal Grill
Magma Products is known for excellent grills and Marine Kettle Charcoal is no exception.
For starters, this is a good-looking pontoon boat grill, especially when mounted on your boat. I love the mirror polished stainless steel construction look; it’s brilliant.
With the assistance of a mounting set, you can easily mount this pontoon boat grill anywhere on your boat.
This grill also comes in different sizes, depending on your needs.
- 13 Inches – 133 square inches of grilling space.
- 15 Inches – 155 square inches of grilling space.
- 17 Inches – 177 square inches of grilling space.
The stainless steel design also makes this product easy to clean. The plastic handle allows you to easily lift the top part of the grill.
As stated with many other boat grills, this does not come with mounting brackets.
But, this is one of the most attractive and efficient grills out there!
- Patented design utilizes both radiant and convection cooking, the hottest temperatures with the least amount of fuel; fast and efficient
- Perfectly balanced hinged lid will not slam shut has "stay cool" cast 18-9 stainless steel handle with air cooled supports
- Swiveling, windproof turbo venturi tube and control valve / regulator, virtually eliminates blowouts, places fuel and valve where it is convenient for safe and easy canister exchanges
Marine Kettle Pros & Cons
Kuuma 58110 Stow N’ Go 160 Boat Grill
Another grill that deserves a mention on our best boat grill list is Kuuma Stow and Go. This grill is pleasing to the eye and can be mistaken for a household BBQ. It is constructed of 100% stainless steel.
This grill model does not require any assembly and is reasonably priced for the space that you get. With 160 square inches, you can easily cook meals for the whole family. It has a thermometer and igniter as well.
The biggest benefit of this pontoon grill is that it has a removable grease tray. With this, you can easily clean the grill and store it away.
- 160 square inch cooking surface
- Constructed of 300 series marine grade stainless steel and comes fully assembled
- Charcoal use only
Kuuma 58110 160 Pros & Cons
Magma Products A10-703C Cabo Adventurer Marine Series Charcoal Grill
Another Magma boat grill has made the list, and it’s not the last one. Its mirror-polished stainless steel construction not only looks good but it is built for maximum corrosion resistance in the harshest marine environments.
It features a 9” x 18” or 162 sq. in. grilling surface. An oversized lockable lid with draw tight latch comes with two variable temperature control draft door assemblies. It also comes with a durable heat resistant all-weather plastic handle with air-cooled support.
The lower grille can easily be removed for cleaning while its angled sidewalls keep briquettes in place.
Despite its good size, the A10-703C Cabo Adventurer is surprisingly portable.
- 100% Mirror Polished Stainless Steel, for lasting beauty and superior corrosion resistance
- 9 inch x 18 inch or 162 square inch grilling surface, perfect for grilling foods of all sizes
- Fold-Away legs, perfect for that quick picnic ashore or at the park (Do Not Use Folding Legs On-Board a Boat)
Cabo Adventurer Marine Pros & Cons
Best Pontoon Boating Gas Grill
Propane boat grills make for a perfect alternative to charcoal grills. Propane is safer to use than charcoal. There are no burning embers that could escape the grill and cause damage to the boat.
Of course, propane has other benefits and considerations to be aware of.
One of the best things about propane is that it is cheap but very powerful. Propane and Gas boat grills come in many different sizes.
From large boat grills that can feed a crew of 20 or more people to smaller compact grills that fit on almost any boat. There is a gas boat grill out there for anyone and everyone.
Also, the smaller a propane boat grill is, the cheaper it will be. You can find propane boat grills for less than $100. Gas is also very cheap, especially portable gas canisters. The smaller grills and gas canisters are also easy to store on most boats.
The main safety concern is to make sure to let it cool down properly after using it and before storing it away. The flame on a propane grill can leave the metal at very high temperatures for a long time. So let it cool off for a while after use.
Propane grills give you better control over the temperature. It is often easier to prepare food on propane grills. So if you plan on eating a lot of fish or scallops on your boat, you might want to invest in a propane grill.
- Provides greater control over temperature
- Safer than charcoal
- Cheap and powerful
- Easy to store on most boats
- Cooks food safely at high temperatures
Magma Products A10-918-2GS Newport 2 InfraRed Gas Grill
The A10-918-2GS Newport 2 infrared gas boat grill is the best of its kind. It is portable, durable and high quality. It allows you to hook up a gas tank easily and has 162 sq. inches of grilling space.
What is even more impressive is the dynamic combustion system that will keep your grill lit even during a very windy day. I have heard of people saying the grill stays lit even during 15-20 knot winds. That is absolutely impressive.
With enough grilling space, you can use this grill on a stable surface. It has foldable legs to keep it steady.
One unique feature of this pontoon boat grill is that it has a window through which you can see the inside. You can also warm it up beforehand to your ideal temperature, depending on what you are cooking – thanks to the hermetically-sealed temperature gauge.
- New tempered glass viewing window New beautiful rounded edge design Redesigned dynamic combustion system
- Made in the U.S.A. Constructed of 100% 18-9 marine grade mirror polished stainless steel Full double lined lower shell Hermetically sealed thermometer
- Equipped with integrated fold-away legs Locking front access grease tray 9"x18" (162 Sq. In.) grilling area
Newport 2 Infrared Gas Pros & Cons
Magma A10-801 TrailMate Connoisseur Series Gas Grill
The Magma A10-801 is a smaller grill than the one above, at only 108 square inches of cooking space. However, it also is a bit less expensive while offering many top-of-the-line grilling features.
It comes with an attractive stainless-steel construction design and the ability to free stand. Also, the gas tank can be mounted to the side just as a portable propane tank.
- Fold-away legs, oversized perfectly balanced lockable lid with full length handle
- Inner safety shell funnels grease into front access, lock in place grease tray
- Convenient snap out radiant plate for even heat distribution and easy clean up
TrailMate Connoisseur Series Gas Pros & Cons
Magma Products A10-1225LS Monterey InfraRed Gourmet Series Gas Grill
Superior corrosion resistance and lasting beauty come from 100% 18-9 mirror polished best marine grade Stainless Steel.
The Magma A10-1225LS Monterey InfraRed Propane grill comes with new infrared technology and incorporates an anti-flare screen system. This system creates an intense evenly distributed heat, which emulsifies food drippings and gives your food a great smokey flavor.
Additional features of this pontoon boat grill include a secondary cooking area and a sealed stainless steel thermometer.
Also, you get a reliable piezo igniter, full-length handle, perfectly balanced lockable lid, and swiveling control/valve regulator for quick, safe fuel canister exchanges.
- Manufactured entirely of 100% 18-9 mirror polished marine grade Stainless Steel for superior corrosion resistance and lasting beauty.
- New Infra-Red technology incorporates an Anti-Flare screen system that creates intense evenly distributed heat which immediately emulsifies food drippings giving your food a great smokey flavor.
- Fold-Away legs are perfect for camping, a quick picnic, or that regularly scheduled tailgate party.
Magma Products Monterey Pros & Cons
Electric Boat Grills
Electric boat grills need a source of electricity to use them. That means that electric boat grills are only useful if you have an on-board generator or a power supply. They also need up to eight or 10 amps of power so they can’t run on batteries.
Electric boat grills are the safest option of all. They are safer than coal and propane because they don’t have an open flame. That doesn’t mean they aren’t hot, however. So make sure to continue using caution around a lit grill.
One benefit of having an electric grill is that you can use it in areas where other types of grills are banned. You can often use electric grills in marinas or on protected areas without issue.
Like propane boat grills, there are many sizes of electric boat grills available. There are small compact electric boat grills that can be stored easily onboard. They are also large electric boat grills that are often very expensive to install. Some boats even come with built-in electric boat grills.
- Requires onboard power from an electric generator
- Provides greater control over temperature
- Safer than charcoal and propane
- Expensive and powerful
- Easy to store on most boats
- It can sometimes be used in marinas where other types of grilling are banned.
George Foreman 15-Serving Electric Grill
The reason why I included this electric grill on the list is that I own one. We got this grill from a friend as a gift and we love it, it is excellent. I think it’s one of the best boat grills on the market if you are going electric.
If you crave home-cooked BBQ flavor this grill will deliver. And it will deliver it fast.
The set up is super easy and will let you prepare anything from seafood, steaks, burgers, or vegetables in minutes. Use temperature probe with 5 different settings to cook your food the way you like it.
Non-Stick, a disc-shaped cooking area of 240 square inches can accommodate up to 15 servings. Your food will be lean and fat-free due to fat removing slope that helps eliminate up to 42% of excess fat. Pull the grease tray out and dump the waste, so simple.
You can use it on the stand or take it off the stand and place it in your kitchen or anywhere on the boat.
- 15+ Servings - It’s tailgate time! The 240 square inches of circular grilling surface lets you make over 15 servings for large groups of people
- George Tough Nonstick Coating - There’s a lot to love about this nonstick coating; it’s durable, easy to clean, and removes the need for butter and oil
- Indoor/Outdoor Removable Stand - Don’t let the weather keep you from the glory of grilling; the easy-to-remove stand takes you from patio to countertop in no time
George Foreman Pros & Cons
Char-Broil Patio Bistro Electric Grill
Like the George Foreman grill, Char-Broil Bistro electric produces food that has impressive taste. The infrared cooking system cooks food evenly and to your liking.
Also, it has the same cooking area of 240 square inches. It also has a raised warming rack of about 80 square inches that gives you extra space.
It heats up a little slower than George Foreman however it was one big advantage. The folding shelves, on both sides of the grill, offer a nice prep area. On top of that, it has a chrome-plated storage rack under the grill that you can use to store food or grilling utensils.
Steal porcelain-coated grates will prevent food from sticking, helping you clean the grill quickly once you are done cooking.
You can safely use it on the boat as it is stable, but you cannot use it inside because it’s not possible to remove the stand.
- 240 Square inch grilling surface with 80 Square inch warming rack- 8 to 12 hamburger capacity
- Electric TRU-Infrared cooking system allows you to cook your food evenly with less flare-ups - juicier food, every time
- Porcelain-coated cast iron Premium cooking grates are rust-resistant and easy-to-clean
Char-Broil Patio Bistro Pros & Cons
Cuisinart Outdoor Electric Grill with VersaStand
A lot of people opt out for Cuisinart VersaStand because of its three-position telescopic stand. The adjustability of the grill height is awesome and can be used anywhere.
It is perfect for smaller boats or areas with 145 square inches of grilling surface. The nonstick porcelain grate provides authentic flavor and stellar grilling performance.
The grill might be small, but it offers enough cooking space for most people. Unless you bring 10 plus people onboard your vessel you should be fine with this grill.
- SMALL SIZE: 120 Volt / 60Hz. Pronounced briefcase-style carrying handle; weighs 17 pounds.
- GREAT FOR FAMILY MEALS: Cooks 8 burgers, 8 steaks, 6 to 10 chicken breasts, or 4 pounds of fish at once.
- TELESCOPING STAND: Portable electric grill with 145-square-inch grilling area and 3 position telescoping base.
Cuisinart Outdoor VersaStand Pros & Cons
How to Choose the Best Pontoon Boat Grill
These are some important aspects you should look for when buying a pontoon boat grill.
1. Grill On A Budget
Remember that you will use this grill only a few times during the summer. Just because it looks good and has all these cool features, it does not mean that it’s better than others.
The bottom line is that a pontoon grill is just a piece of metal used to make food. You might be better off spending your extra money on grilling/cooking lessons.
2. Pontoon Boat Grill Housing
The type of water you take your pontoon boat on will determine the type of grill housing you should consider buying.
- Saltwater – look for 316-grade stainless steel. 316-grade stainless steel has high tensile strength and is resistant to corrosion.
- Freshwater – 18-8 grade of stainless steel should be enough. It is not as strong as 316-grade stainless steel, but it does good job-fighting corrosion.
Also, you should always look for the grill that has a double-liner coating. This is important for the following two reasons:
- Double liner protects the metal from getting discolored
- It guards against gas leaks
- It keeps the outside of the grill cool, so your kids don’t burn their fingers on the hot lid
3. Boat Grill Shape and Size
Determine the adequate size of the grill to fit your needs without sacrificing the space on your boat.
- Round grills are typically smaller, they don’t have sharp edges and look beautiful
- Rectangular grills offer a larger grilling surface but also take up more boat space.
4. Grill Portability
Are you keeping your grill on the boat, or are you taking it home? The size of the grill is not important if you are keeping it on the boat. But if you don’t, you should go with something small. Even a medium-sized grill can be difficult to transport.
5. Gas or Charcoal Grills
Some people enjoy the smoky flavor of charcoal while others prefer to use propane grill.
- Charcoal grills are typically a little cheaper, make better tasking food, but are harder to use.
- Propane grills are safer, easier to use but are pricier and the food is not as tasty.
Keep that in mind next time you decide to buy one.
6. Pontoon Boat Grill Mount
Do you want a freestanding pontoon boat grill or one that requires mounting to a railing? Not all freestanding grills can be used on a boat, and not all mounting hardware can be attached to the rail.
Typically, the longer the warranty the better the product. It’s best to protect your investment the best way you can because pontoon grills are not cheap, and you don’t want a grill issue to ruin your day. Keep in mind that a better warranty is probably going to cost you more upfront as well.
How to Install Grill on Your Pontoon
There are two different ways to install a grill on your pontoon;
- Hang it on the rail
- Mount it on the decking
Personally I prefer mounting my grill on the decking and the video below will tell you why, but if you prefer to mount it on the railing, that is not a bad option either.
Additional Grilling Questions
If you have not grilled on a boat before you are going to have questions. The most common questions I hear from boaters are as follows.
1. Is it Safe to Grill on a Boat?
The short answer is yes.
Grilling on a boat involves taking some common-sense precautions so you don’t cause a fire on the boat. If you follow some basic rules about fire safety then you shouldn’t have a problem. There are specific safety rules for propane and gas grills so make sure you know the difference.
2. They Look Small – Are Grills for Boats Large Enough?
Boat grills come in various sizes. If you know ahead of time how much grilling you are going to be doing then you can get a grill that will be appropriate for your purposes.
But I think it is best to start with a small to medium-sized grill. Try to find out how much food you cook on average before you beside to buy an expensive grill.
3. How do I Store the Grill on my Boat?
Many boats come with storage compartments perfect for storing a medium-sized boat grill.
But what if your boat doesn’t have proper storage?
To preserve the quality and functionality of your grill, you need to properly take care of it.
One small consideration is utensils. Do not feel obligated to use regular barbecuing and long utensils on the boat. If you have other smaller utensils that are easier to use and easy to clean then go ahead and use those. Avoid using plastic forks or any utensil that is not meant for touching hot surfaces.
Grilling Safety Tips to Keep in Mind
Are you going to use your boat in the ocean or just lakes? I would suggest you avoid using the grill in the ocean, especially if it is charcoal. You never know if some rogue wave will hit you and set your boat on fire.
Stay on the lake and follow the below tips;
- Always follow the boat grill manufacturer’s recommendations. Remember that you are not grilling on land.
- If you are grilling at the Marina, check to see if it’s allowed. Some establishments limit the use of boat grills when you’re out in the water.
- Never cook with the boat in motion. Movement or waves can knock down your pontoon boat grill. This can escalate to a serious problem quickly.
- Always inspect your pontoon boat grill before and after use. Be particularly careful with propane boat grills.
- Don’t leave your pontoon grill unattended.
- Watch for embers. Stop them from falling out. Your boat can catch fire from these.
- Don’t add lighter fluid while the grill is in use. This can cause unexpected combustion.
- Avoid grilling around flammable materials.
- Have a fire extinguisher ready close by.
- Don’t forget to turn the grill off once done with cooking.
- Always clean your pontoon boat grill after use.
What is the Best Boat Grill for the Money?
This is a hard question to answer unless I know what you are looking for. Everyone is in a different situation and should do their own research to figure out what they need. I just hope I was able to point you in the right direction on your quest to find the best pontoon boat grill.
I also hope that pontoon boat grill is not what will make you happy, the family and friends that are around you while grilling is more important.
And once you have found your grill, the next step should be to find your perfect pontoon boat table.