Best Hibachi Grill Reviews – Our Top Choices and Buyer’s Guide

best hibachi grill

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Good times and good food almost always go hand in hand. Hibachi grilling is among the best ways to enjoy the company of friends, eat delicious food, and put on a show while doing it.

You might have in mind putting the grill in the middle of the dining table, or going for a Teppanyaki flat top food show. Either way, you need to pick the right grill.

This is a roundup of the best Hibachi grills currently in the market. Plus, a complete guide with everything you need to know about Hibachi grilling.

What Is a Hibachi Grill?

Before we get started, let’s touch on what a Hibachi grill is exactly.

The word Hibachi comes from Japan, where this grill originates. It translates as ‘fire bowl’, due to the fact that it’s a deep container that holds charcoal.

The simple design of a Hibachi grill is often a small cast iron, or ceramic, base with an open lid. Sometimes, the ‘bowl’ is a composite of wood lined by a fire-resistant material. The exterior occasionally has decorative drawings and engravings for a pleasant aesthetic.

The looks of the Hibachi grill matter as it’s often used in the middle of the table. Watching the deliberate and agile preparation of the food is often part of the culinary experience. That’s why some models are even incorporated within dining furniture.

The Japanese Hibachi grill isn’t exactly replicated in other cultures, but rather taken as an inspiration. In the United States, a small portable grill is often called a Hibachi.

Cooks try to keep the tradition by using charcoal and an open lid. Also by choosing a think rack over the grill to allow the full heat to reach the food. A thin sheet top, or hotplate, is also used in Teppanyaki grilling.

Hibachi grills can also be units that are fueled on propane or electricity, but still maintain the extra hot method of grilling.

Best Hibachi Grills Reviews

Here’s a roundup of the 10 best Hibachi grills. The list includes grills of various setups, materials, features, and price points for Hibachi style grilling at home!

NOTO DIA Table-top Charcoal Grill, Shichirin Hida Konro

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The NOTO DIA grill is one of the most aesthetically pleasing charcoal grills we’ve come across. It’s made from diatomaceous earth, with a Paulownia wood base. The wire mesh grill is made from zinc-plated iron.

It’s a compact little affair that weighs around 1.4 pounds, without the charcoal. The dimensions of the grill are 5 x 5 x 4.5 inches, with the wooden base slightly recessed from the ceramic bowl. This size is considered too tiny by some people, but they seem to miss the point of tabletop cooking. Leisurely dinners are all about fully experiencing food.

It’s best to use authentic charcoal with this grill for a truly smokeless and finely aromatic experience. You can use Binchotan BBQ charcoal, but be warned that it comes with a hefty price tag. Alternatively, you could use Thaan Thai charcoal logs which costs much less. Plus, it burns for a long time and doesn’t leave much ash.

Things We Like

  • The authentic classical design
  • It doesn’t heat up from the outside
  • The grill rack is highly durable
  • Moderately priced

Things We Don’t Like

  • The body of the grill scratches and chips easily
  • It should be handled with care
  • Can’t be washed in a dishwasher. Handwashing only

Firefly Compact Charcoal Grill

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The bucket-shaped Firefly has around 10 inches of depth to stack a rich mound of charcoal. This high heat comes up to the 8 inch circular rack to cook steak, chicken, or fish in minutes! It’s the perfect dinner for two.

The iron supports will keep the heat away from the table, or any other heat-sensitive surface. It also comes with a wooden handle to aid in the cooking and coal turning processes. These features make it quite welcome on the dining table.

The Firefly is also great as an outdoor grill. The food would cook quickly and easily, so even if there’s a small gathering of more than two, no plates will stay empty for long. Once the party is over, the hinged top rack opens up to clean the ashes.

Even though this grill is not foldable, it’s still travel friendly. You can carry it around, as it weighs less than 4 pounds, and has the size of a toy. It’s also easy to store, even at the trunk of your car.

Things We Like

  • Heating capabilities
  • Set up takes minutes
  • The wooden handle
  • No loose parts to clip or tie
  • Ease of cleaning
  • Moderate price

Things We Don’t Like

  • The fire is a bit difficult to start at the beginning

NOMADIQ Portable Propane Gas Grill

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The NOMADIQ was created for living free. But that doesn’t necessarily mean roughing it up. This grill was carefully designed and meticulously built for optimal performance. Whether that’s in a family festive meal, or in a BBQ in the open air.

It comes in folded into a neat portable structure, then it opens up, and it’s ready for action then and there. Both sides of the NOMADIQ can be used as grilling surfaces, which provides plenty of cooking space.

Unlike the previous grills, you can invite a large group for a delicious meal. And if your party includes some vegan folk, there’s no trouble at all in splitting the veggies from the meat. After all, that’s what dual cooking surfaces were made for.

The propane canister is easy to connect to the grill, and provides an instantaneous high heat ready for grilling. This is better than starting up a fire and waiting for the charcoal to burn. However, it misses out on the smokey flavors of true grilling.

The one-pound propane canister allows full heat grilling, on both sides, for about three hours. This is more than enough time for a raging BBQ event. And if you’re going on a long camping trip, you might want to bring an extra canister.

Things We Like

  • Premium quality materials
  • Large grilling surface
  • Dual sides of grilling
  • Three hours of full heat grilling
  • Foldable design

Things We Don’t Like

  • Very pricey
  • Needs a propane canister to work

Lodge Cast Iron Sportsman’s Grill

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This rustic looking grill comes from a manufacturer that’s been in the business since 1896. The lodge family founded the company that sells premium quality cookware a century ago, and they still run it effectively.

This grill holds the principles of the Lodge cookware, which are mainly durability and good design. This fully portable grill is a reliable BBQ asset indoors and outdoors.

Things We Like

  • Reputable manufacturer
  • Durable structure
  • Made from pre-seasoned cast iron
  • Coal door for replenishing and cleaning
  • Efficient heat retention
  • Doesn’t need frequent addition of charcoal
  • Medium sized grill

Things We Don’t Like

  • The grill could rust if not cared for properly

Blackstone Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle Station

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The Blackstone Flat Top is a completely different grill from all the previous ones. It uses propane like the NOMADIQ, but other than that it’s a whole other game. This flat top grill provides concentrated heat on the surface that contrasts starkly with the open fire grills.

The way food responds to the searing effect of a hotplate lends itself easily to Teppanyaki grilling. And it’s by no means limited to that cuisine. You can cook steaks, burgers, vegetables, and fish easily on the Blackstone.

There’s also the absolute ease of operation, literally by pressing a button. In addition to four heat zones that vary from mild to extra hot. This allows you to cook the food thoroughly, mildly, or leave it to warm up.

The Blackstone grill might not be of the right size and shape for the dining table, but it’s easily movable and doesn’t take up too much space. It’s perfect for a party, family gathering, camping, and outdoor activities.

Things We Like

  • Temperature control with two heat zones
  • Large cooking area of 720 sq. inches
  • Easy assembly and simple operation
  • Extra shelf for storage
  • No-hassle cleanup
  • Transport is a breeze with the casters

Things We Don’t Like

  • No charcoal flavor
  • Not a portable grill

Weber 10020 Smokey Joe Grill

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The Weber Smokey Joe looks like a true ‘bowl of fire’, that’s why it’s a very close approximation to a Hibachi grill. In addition to the deep space for stacking up the coals, there are also some strategically placed vents for heat control.

It’s customary to use this grill with the accompanying lid, but it’s not a must. A Hibachi grill is traditionally an open fire appliance, that’s why it’s preferable to put the lid aside, and enjoy the food that’s cooked swiftly on extra high heat.

This grill looks a bit Hippie and brings back the 70s with a sizzle. Even the available colors and finish fit with the bell bottom pants, Disco lights, Boho designs, and big hair. If you’re into the pop vibe, you might find this grill especially amusing and well fitting with your party scene.

It’s also fun to have around the backyard, in a camping trip, or in a tailgating event. It’s a versatile grill with a wide enough cooking surface to host a nice party with plenty of good BBQ food.

Things We Like

  • Portable and lightweight
  • High durability of the porcelain-enamelled body
  • Rust-proof frame and rack
  • Temperature control
  • Pleasant aesthetics
  • Large grilling surface
  • Easy to clean after grilling
  • Budget-friendly price

Things We Don’t Like

  • Grilling rack doesn’t have a handle

Update International Cast Iron Hibachi Set

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Few other devices can give a similar culinary experience that’s elegant, authentic, and fun. Fondue, s’mores and kebabs are all irresistible appetizers and party foods. The Update International happens to be the perfect grill to prepare all these delicacies.

Being tiny-sized, and made from black cast iron and dark wood, makes this grill a decorative item as well. It’s about 3 1/3 inches in diameter, with a height of around 4 inches. That’s why it has a natural place at the centre of a dining table. It would also be great for a romantic date.

Things We Like

  • Compact sized and lightweight
  • Fits inside a pu pu platter
  • Used for a multitude of appetizers
  • Can be used for Fondue
  • Easy to set up
  • A budget buy

Things We Don’t Like

  • Not suitable for meal preparation

Secura Smokeless Indoor Grill

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Charcoal grilling is great, and the food often has an irresistible flavor, but it comes with a bit of effort. Setting up a charcoal grill, lighting up the starting fire, waiting for the coal to burn sufficiently, then cleaning up, is certainly a lot of work.

Some people prefer to cut some of these steps, and go quickly to the part where they put the food on the grill. The main benefit of an electric Hibachi grill is how easy it is to set up. It’s by far the simplest to put together and operate. Even easier than the propane grills.

It lends itself easily to the dining table, a roof party, or a terrace. It’s also perfect for preparing a gourmet breakfast or brunch. As long as there’s an electric outlet, then this grill is good to go.

The grill has a polished surface and a corrugated one. So whether you like the searing lines on your BBQ food, or you prefer a hot-plate platter, you have both options here.

Things We Like

  • Two sided cooking tray
  • Non-stick grilling surface
  • Large cooking area of around 180 sq. inches
  • The glass lid is removable for open or close lid cooking
  • Handles and housing don’t heat up
  • Built-in heat indicator light
  • Removable drip tray
  • One year limited warranty

Things We Don’t Like

  • A bit expensive

Marsh Allen Hibachi Charcoal Grill

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The Marsh Allen grill is smartly designed to provide maximum versatility and temperature control. Most of the previous grills operated on high heat only, here there are several options to choose from.

The charcoal can’t be controlled directly, but its burn rate can be adjusted through air vents. Also, the height of the cooking grids can be set in three different positions. The further they are from the heat, the slower the food will cook.

There’s definitely a lot of thought invested in creating this grill. There are two grills for versatility and ease of movement. You can also notice this thoughtfulness in the wooden handles of the grids.

Whether this grill would be placed on the tabletop or the trunk of your truck, it would perform with grace, and make cooking food a pure pleasure. The size of the Marsh Allen grill helps of course, as it’s only 18 x 10 x 3.4 inches.

Things We Like

  • Made from sturdy cast iron
  • Versatile cooking surface
  • Allows for temperature control
  • Cooking grates are adjustable
  • Wooden handles for easy manipulation

Things We Don’t Like

  • A bit on the expensive side
  • The setup is occasionally problematic

Fire Sense Black Notebook Charcoal Grill

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This foldable steel grill is the epitome of portable luxuries. It can be carried around like a beach chair or even less, as its folded thickness doesn’t exceed an inch. Once you reach the location of your picnic, you can set it up in a minute, and start cooking right away.

Its fully extended size is approximately 18 x 12 x 14 inches, which isn’t too tiny. The charcoal stacks deep into the grill providing the extra heat required for quick cooking, plus the sustained temperature for extended grilling.

The Fire Sense is quite suitable for tabletop dining. Furthermore, it’s also perfect for outdoor barbequing, picnics, tailgating, camping, and any impromptu adventures that call for more fun and less clutter.

Things We Like

  • Compact and portable
  • Folds into a thin and lightweight sheet
  • Can be stored in a car
  • Easy to set up
  • The frame is made from durable steel
  • The rack is wide enough to cook for a small gathering
  • Cleaning up is no hassle
  • Comes at a budget-friendly price

Things We Don’t Like

  • The clasps are a bit flimsy, might need tightening with pliers

Everything You Need to Know About Hibachi Grills

Here’s a full guide with all the necessary information you need to choose the right Hibachi grill. This includes a brief history of the grill, its characteristics, and optimal usage. In addition to the best foods you can cook on a Hibachi grill.

What’s the Best Use of a Hibachi Grill?

The increasing popularity of Hibachi grills speaks volumes about its versatility. Being easy to carry around, and with its remarkable capabilities for quick cooking, it certainly has a broad variety of uses. Here are some ideas, for inspiration.

A Culinary Experience

Grilling food can be either slow and leisurely over low heat, or quick and searing over high heat. Hibachi grilling is of the second type.

This grill is smaller, like many yakitori grills, so it’s not the best BBQ device for a large party. It’s a culinary experience for a small group. Usually, for a special dinner. If the gathering is larger, you can make good use of the fact that the food cooks quickly. Serve successive batches for your guests, and add variety while you’re at it.

Seaside Grilling, Camping, Tailgating, and Picnics

The fact that the Hibachi grill is portable, and runs on charcoal, makes it the perfect companion for picnics. An impromptu adventure in the open air is ten times better if it includes good food. And that’s so easy with this versatile grill.

Use a Dual Grilling Surface for Meat and Vegetables

Using the Hibachi grill for vegan and non-vegan friends can be a little bit complicated. The small size of the cooking surface doesn’t allow full separation of meat and vegetables. If you have such a situation frequently, you can opt for a Hibachi grill with dual cook tops.

What Can You Cook on a Hibachi Grill?

Part of Hibachi cooking is about the show, with the flying shrimps, flaming onions, and meat cut up and sizzled in a flash. But mostly it’s about having fun, inclusion, engagement, and being fully in the moment.

Whether you decide to have a family gathering, a day out in the open air, or a romantic dinner for two, there’s a lot you can do with one of these grills. Here are some of my favorite ideas, recipes, and of course tips & tricks.

Preparation Saves the Day

Planning the menu ahead of time is critical in Hibachi grilling. It all seems rather spontaneous and in the moment, but a bit of preparation goes a long way.

That’s mainly because the grilling surface is often small, and you need to keep the various courses coming in sequence. The food should be prepared ahead of time. The meat needs to be chopped to the right size, marinated, and seasoned.

Flat Top Recipes or Open Grill BBQ?

This is an essential first choice before deciding on anything else. Cooking on a hot plate is quite different from grilling on a mesh with the fire so close to the food.

On a hot plate, you can ditch the skewers, cut the meat and vegetables to a tiny size, and fry the rice fully. These things are unspeakable with a mesh wire grill. You can’t afford to go without a skewer if the meat is too small, and you definitely can’t fry rice.

The flavors and seasoning would differ a lot too. So make sure you pick the right recipe for the grill you have. When in doubt, go for Hibachi chicken, this is pretty much everybody’s favorite.

Side Dishes Are Always Good

Hibachi grilling is never just about the main course. Sides made from rice, potatoes, and grains are highly in demand as well. Some of these are difficult to prepare on a grill, and some take a bit long to cook, which is not in tune with the quick Hibachi grilling.

That’s why you can cook these ahead of time, and serve them along with the grilled goodies. Here’s one of our pro tips: appetizers are great on the table while the food is cooking. Your little party could nibble on them as the main course gets ready for serving.

Desserts Can be Grilled Too

It’s a brilliant idea to finish off your meal with grilled dessert. Hibachi is all about satisfying palates and wowing your friends with a multitude of flavors.

From savory to sweet, you can throw in some pineapple or other exotic fruits. Once they are grilled and smokey, add them to some ice cream for an extra special Sundae.

Grilled cake and fruits is another irresistible dessert that goes with any occasion. If you’re on a picnic outdoors, do I even need to suggest S’mores?

How to Choose the Right Hibachi Grill?

Shopping for new things is always fun. It’s even more pleasurable when you make a purchase that’s just right!

Here are a few points to bear in mind while selecting a new Hibachi grill.

Budget

Aside from the obvious, there’s an important question here: what do you get for buying the premium stuff? And do you actually need it?

Big bill grills are often propane powered. These cross the $200 mark easily. But it’s not just because they are fueled by propane. They’re often made from premium materials, and full to the brim with bells and whistles.

The next contender on the highest priced grills are the foldable ones. These are usually north of $70, but there are some simple models that go well below that. You’d pay around the same price if you want a decorative classical Hibachi grill with the wooden base and all.

For about $50 you should be able to buy a decent indoor/outdoor Hibachi grill. But bear in mind that you also need to set aside some more cash for grilling accessories, good quality charcoal, and a bunch of bamboo skewers.

Usage

Indoor Hibachi grills that you’d place as a centerpiece on your dining table are likely to differ from outdoor camping Hibachi grills. The former is more decorative, and the latter is more rugged.

Some grills are pretty versatile and can be used for both occasions. They wouldn’t be too fancy or too rough naturally, but they’re smart enough to fit snugly wherever they’re placed.

If you like Fondu, pu pu platters, and S’mores, then go for a tiny Hibachi grill. It certainly adds fun and flair to any gathering.

Material

Decorative Hibachi grills are often fragile and high maintenance. They’re worth having though, and some models have the fine balance of being sturdy and looking pleasant.

Otherwise, look for pre-seasoned cast iron grills. If it looks good but the iron needs regular seasoning, you can purchase it too, but maintain it well to avoid any metal deterioration or defects.

Size

Hibachi grills are often compact, but the sizes can extend a bit more. If you don’t plan on using it on the dining table, then you could go for the larger variety. Especially for a camping trip where a big group is eagerly waiting for the delicious goodies.

Dual or Single Grills

There’s a nice option of having two separate cooking surfaces. This is especially useful when you invite vegan friends over. Also nice when you’re grilling foods with different cooking requirements. Like meat and fish, or vegetables and anything.

Open Grill or Flat Top

Going Teppanyaki is an amazing choice in a BBQ party and a truly good show. But, some people prefer the smoky charcoal flavors of the open grill. Believe it or not, there are a few grills that offer both choices. There’s one up there in our list!

Charcoal, Propane, or Electric?

That’s another choice you should make. And unfortunately, there’s no grill that offers all three at the same time!

With charcoal you need to set up a fire and it takes a bit of time to be ready for grilling. But the flavor and the grilling temperature are exceptional.

Propane is easy, connect and go. You’ll need a gas canister though, and the food wouldn’t be quite as smokey. It’s not the exact exotic experience.

Electricity is great, when there’s an outlet. It’s completely off the table in picnics, camping, or tailgating. But it’s amazing for an indoor Hibachi dinner on a rainy night.

While you can’t have one grill with all three benefits, who said you can’t own two grills? Or even three?

Best Hibachi Grill – Final Thoughts

Choosing a winner is challenging as every Hibachi grill on the list is capable of making fantastic food. These grills are versatile, and allow for cooking up some memorable meals for your friends and family

If you’d like an authentic classical Hibachi grill, then I definitely recommend the NOTO DIA Table-top Charcoal Grill. It has all the beauty and elegance of its ancestral grills.

Bon appetit!