Green Mountain vs. Traeger: Which One Produce Better Wood Pellet Grill?
A good grilling experience will always start by first having a good grill. And if you want something that will give your foods a distinct smoky flavor, a pellet grill is a perfect choice.
But as you buy a wood pellet grill you will also have to choose a good brand, and you can never go wrong by buying from Green Mountain or Traeger.
However, things can be a little hectic when you have to choose between these two top brands as they both cook amazingly well and are feature-rich enough.
In this guide, we try to make the choice easier for potential buyers by highlighting some of the key differences between the two amazing brands based on some of their best-selling models. But first here is an overview of Green Mountain and Traeger.
Green Mountain Overview
Green Mountain has been making pellet grills since 2008, but despite only having been around for a little over a decade, the company has managed to win a huge following of pellet grilling enthusiasts.
Most of the brand's success can be attributed to their decision to lower their prices significantly back in 2014 which opened up their business to the larger budget segment of the market.
Besides being fairly priced, their grills also embrace some fancier modern features such as WiFi capability that lets you monitor the grilling remotely, and they were among the first companies to introduce these features. However, many other brands including Traeger are now making it a standard feature for most of their latest grills.
Another thing that makes Green Mountain grills unique is that unlike what you get from most other brands, many of their grills will not have wheels. Instead, they feature foldable legs that make them easy to pack and carry in vehicles.
Also, unlike Traeger, they allow you to use any wood pellets that you like without voiding the warranty and hence making it possible for grillers to use their favorite pellets.
When compared to Traeger, their grills will also have relatively large cooking areas. And because they focus more on retail dealer distribution network, the grills can be a little hard to find online.
Traeger was the first company to make and sell wood pellet grills. At some point, they even had a patent for these grills. They have been making and selling them since 1987 and control the largest chunk of the wood pellet grill market with more models available than most other brands.
Given that they were the original manufacturer of these grills, they have perfected most of their models to ensure the best performance.
And most of their grills will feature heavy-duty steel construction with stainless steel parts to ensure top-notch performance and longer service life. Many grillers also love that their grills will work well for both direct and indirect cooking.
Because unlike many Green Mountain grills their models will include wheels, they are more convenient and easier to move around when grilling.
The most notable area where Traeger seems to underperform is the temperature control because besides having larger increments between the temperatures, controlling the temperature is also often a little hectic. Also, the brand does not allow you to use non-Traeger wood pellets as this voids the warranty, and so you might not be able to use favorite wood pellet brand.
Note: Given that both Green Mountain and Traeger have several wood pellet grills in the market, below we use two models that fall in the same category when it comes to size and price range which are the Green Mountain Daniel Boone and Traeger Junior Elite for comparison
Green Mountain vs. Traeger
Green Mountain and Traeger are two brands that you can trust to have a top-quality wood pellet grill for you whether you are looking for a grill for smoking or something that you can also use for direct cooking. And for a clear idea on how the brands compare, here is a more comprehensive breakdown of what sets the Daniel Boone and Junior Elite apart.
1. Temperature Range
A wider temperature range makes a grill more versatile, and so when trying to pick between two top brands like Green Mountain and Traeger, it is always a wise idea to first understand what each has to offer.
With the Green Mountain grills like the Daniel Boone, you can be sure of getting a relatively wider temperature as it has been built to cook as low as 150 degrees to as high as 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
For the Junior Elite, the lowest temperature you can get is 180 degrees, and it can go up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit which is 100 degrees lower than what you get from Green Mountain.
What these numbers mean is that the Daniel Boone grill will be perfect for both low and slow cooking and direct cooking methods like grilling.
2. Open Cooking Area
The cooking space that you get with these two brands will typically depend on the specific model you are choosing as both will have both small and large grills to cater to all kinds of grillers.
From the models on our comparison, it is clear that Green Mountain will provide a relatively larger cooking area given that their model has 458 square inches available for cooking. And this means it will be more ideal for cooking for larger groups.
Traeger's Junior Elite, on the other hand, will provide 300 square inches of cooking space which might be smaller but will still be more than enough for typical grillers. But it is also worth noting that they have some models in the market such as Traeger Timberline series that will provide upwards up 600 square inches of cooking space.
3. Digital Control
One of the key elements that set these two brands apart from their many other competitors in the market is the fact that they always try to incorporate more advanced features on their grills.
Both the Daniel Boone and Junior Elite will incorporate digital controls for the temperature, but they are designed differently and will also work differently.
For the Green Mountain grill, you will get a precise digital control that will come with a meat probe for even more convenient temperature monitoring, and to ensure maximum precision, it provides 5 degrees increments.
The Traeger grill uses an integrated digital elite controller that makes setting the grill temperature easier at increments of 20 degrees and is hence not as precise as what you get from Green Mountain.
4. Hopper Capacity
A good wood pellet grill is one that can run longer without having to put in more pellets as it will free you to do other things as the food is cooking. And for this, it will need to have a large enough hopper.
These two brands seem to understand this better than most of their other competitors and will hence give their products some relatively larger capacity hoppers.
But the difference between the two, when using the Daniel Boone and Junior Elite for comparison, is not very significant given that the later has an 18-pound hopper capacity and the former a 17-pound one. However, for low and slow cooking, 1 pound can make a significant difference.
If you are on the market for a lightweight grill that will give you an easier time when moving it around, the Junior Elite will be the better option.
This Traeger grill weighs around 80 pound which is quite lightweight for these grill types given their size, and it is much lighter when compared to the 155-pound Daniel Boone grill.
However, the extra weight of Daniel Boone is a good indication that it has been built with some heavy gauge and more durable materials and will hence be more long-lasting.
While most Green Mountain grills will come without wheels as they include some foldable legs designed to make them easier to fold down and carry, the Daniel Boone breaks away from this as it includes some wheel.
And these are not just simple wheels but rather a more efficient wheel system that incorporates 2 swiveling casters for easy maneuverability and 2 all-weather wheels that make the grill easy to move in rough terrain.
The Traeger wood pellet grill just like with most of their pother models will include two medium-size wheels which will move smoothly in different terrains. However, they are not all-weather which means they might struggle in very rough surfaces. But, this grill also includes two thick steel legs that help keep it super sturdy when in use.
Price is another factor that will mostly depend on the specific model you are buying from either of the brands as both will have affordable and expensive options.
Using prices from the respective manufacturer websites, the Green Mountains seems to be the pricier brand here. At the time of writing this piece this grill model is currently retailing at about $70 more expensive than what you pay for the Junior Elite.
While the price might differ in different sites the Green Mountain grill will still be more expensive. And the extra bucks you pay for their grills are probably because of their wider temperature range and significantly larger cooking areas.
Wood pellets are the perfect choice for any griller that wants something perfect for both smoking and grilling. But to get the best service from one, you should always buy from top brands like Green Mountain and Traeger.
However, the tedious part will often be choosing between these two amazing brands as they both make some high-quality products. With our overview and comparison above, it should now be clear how they differ which should make your choice easier.
All in all, if you are looking for something from a highly reputable brand that allows you to choose from a wider range of products, go for Traeger. But, if you want a more modern-looking wood pellet with smarter features, Green Mountain is the brand for you.
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