Grill Like a Pro with These Space-Saving Balcony BBQs

For apartment dwellers with limited outdoor space, grilling on the balcony can make summer meals quick, easy, and flavorful. With the right compact gas grill, you can sizzle up burgers, steaks, kebabs, and more without sacrificing quality or crowd capacity.

When choosing a grill for a small urban balcony, typically 5-15 square feet, opt for a model with 200-300 square inches of cook space. Popular picks like the Weber Q1200 and Fuego Element grill pack a lot of grilling power into a tiny footprint.

small gas grill for balcony

Grill Placement and Safety Tips

Before firing up your new compact grill, check with your apartment complex about any rules or required precautions for balcony grilling. Keep your grill at least a few feet away from railings and walls to prevent fire hazards. Having a fire extinguisher nearby is also smart for quickly handling any flare-ups.

Avoid leaving your grill unattended while cooking, and carefully monitor children and pets around the hot cooking surface. Take extra care when opening the grill lid, as steam and heat may billow out.

Comparing Propane and Natural Gas

For balcony grilling, propane often makes more sense than natural gas. The tanks are portable and easy to store inside when not in use. Propane also allows you to grill even if your apartment doesn’t have an existing gas hookup.

Standard propane tanks contain about 20 pounds of gas, which typically lasts for 8-12 hours of grilling time. For longer runtimes, consider getting a larger tank.

Top Compact Grills for Small Balconies

Weber Q1200

This wildly popular portable grill boasts 189 square inches of cooking space, more than enough for about 6-8 burgers. The heavy-duty porcelain-enameled cast iron grates retain heat beautifully, while the stainless steel burner outputs 8500 BTU of sizzling intensity.

We love the Weber Q1200’s sturdy construction, built to withstand wind and light rain on the balcony. The push-button ignition makes firing it up a breeze every time.

Fuego Element

With its vertical design and foldable legs, the Fuego Element is engineered specifically for small patios and balconies. Don’t let its small 24 x 13 inch footprint fool you though – this grill still manages to pack in 346 square inches of grilling surface.

Dual zone burners let you cook at two different temperatures simultaneously. Optional extras like a pizza stone and griddle pan help you get even more versatility from the Element.

Cuisinart CGG-240

For a budget-friendly but mighty balcony grill, check out the Cuisinart CGG-240. The generous 240 square inch cooking area accommodates lots of food at once. Foldout side shelves provide extra prep and serving space that tucks away neatly when not in use.

This portable grill fires up fast thanks to the electronic ignition system. Reviewers praise its light weight and compact footprint as ideal for small patios and balconies.

Key Features to Look For

Here are some of the top features to consider when selecting a compact gas grill for an apartment balcony:

  • Sturdy stainless steel construction
  • Push button or electronic ignition for matchless starts
  • Side tables or racks for prep space and storage
  • Wheels for easy maneuverability in tight spaces

Grilling Tips and Recommendations

Take full advantage of your petite grill’s versatility by using a two-zone indirect/direct cooking approach. Sear meats and veggies over the hotter area, while reheating side dishes or toasting buns on the cooler side.

Quick-cooking kabobs, burgers, and chops are perfect for fast and easy weekday grilling sessions. Try mixing up marinades and rubs to infuse big flavor fast. Brush on a sweet and tangy sauce just before serving.

Be diligent about cleaning your grill thoroughly after each use to prevent grease buildup and residue that can impact performance. Replace components like burners periodically to improve heating efficiency.

Grilling on an apartment balcony is totally doable with the right compact gas grill. Models like the Weber Q1200, Fuego Element, and Cuisinart CGG-240 combine a slim footprint with robust cooking capabilities. Follow basic safety tips, look for key features like portability and ignition systems, and you’ll be grilling up gourmet meals in your small outdoor space all season long.

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