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We put the VonHaus Compact Charcoal BBQ to the test. This budget-friendly model is a great one for basic barbecuing, but how did it perform when cooking more complicated items?
This budget-friendly barbecue is a great choice for smaller gardens but would still like the opportunity to grill enough for a small family or gathering.
We felt the overall quality of this model let it down somewhat, although there are some useful features such as the sturdy wheels, bottle opener and side tables and the cooking results from it warranted its price.
Read our review of the best charcoal barbecues
Our first impressions were that it’s packed with features, offering a range of functions and extra handy add-ons like side tables. However, every single part feels very thin and flimsy.
This BBQ is very straightforward to assemble, but if you hate flatpack, steer well clear. Nothing arrived preassembled, so set aside an hour for lots of fiddly tightening of screws.
This BBQ is packed with features. It comes with a thermometer so you can monitor the temperature of your charcoal or wood smoke. The two side tables are great for holding ingredients and sauces as you cook. The wheels are handy for moving the BBQ around, though they don’t have locks, and there’s storage underneath for BBQ accessories. The most notable feature is an adjustable firebox, so you can choose the height of your charcoal or smoking wood and adjust the temperature. It also has a front door, so you can easily add more wood while smoking. It offers a surprising amount of features for a BBQ of this price – there’s even a bottle opener so you can enjoy a beer as you grill.
The adjustable firebox offers amazing control that you rarely see on charcoal BBQs, let alone charcoal BBQs of this size. It meant we could precisely choose temperature – nothing was incinerated or underdone and we could cook all our ingredients exactly as we wanted them. We were also impressed with how quickly it heated up, reaching temperature in a relatively quick 25 minutes. However, other features of the BBQ let the cooking down a little. The 45 x 32cm grill is fairly small, and spaces in the grill are quite large, so we lost smaller ingredients like halloumi and cherry tomatoes to the fire.
This is not a sustainable product. Its many parts all come wrapped in plastic, and with just a two-year warranty, it’s unlikely to last too long without a cover for winter months.
The VonHaus Compact Charcoal BBQ is an excellent option if you’re on a budget. It’s packed with features and offers great temperature control, but bear in mind that it’s truly compact and budget – the parts are low quality, and it has a small grill area.
Model: Compact Charcoal BBQ
Dimensions: 108 x 96 x 36cm
Materials: Porcelain-coated steel wire grill, SPCC with high temperature powder coating
Warranty: Two years
Fuel needed: Charcoal
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