If you’ve ever been interested in buying a pellet smoker then it’s highly likely that you may have heard of Traeger and Green Mountain Grills. But which brand is better?
In this post we’ll guide you through everything you need to know about two of the budget options from each brand.
We’ll then compare them to each other and come to a definite conclusion on which is best.
To finish we’ll talk a little about the rest of the range of each brand and let you know which we think is the best pellet smoker brand out of the two.
Click to jump straight to each topic:
The first smoker we’ll look at today is the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett Pellet Grill. This is a small, lightweight, portable pellet smoker that is ideal for tailgating, camping or just for simple smoking in the garden.
It features a lot of interesting design choices that many of the higher end models simply can’t include. For example, it has well designed legs that can fold up to be used as handles for transport, making it fully portable. It is also fully tailgate ready and again the design of the legs make it a perfect fit for most trucks.
Despite being a fraction of the cost of some of the high end pellet smokers, the Davy Crocket has still managed to pack in some great features that you’d only normally find on smokers that cost many time more.
For example, it has a Wifi system that allows you to monitor the grill from your phone or tablet. Initially we thought this was a bit gimmicky but the ease of use and ability to check what’s cooking from anywhere has just about won us over. There is also a Server Mode that allows you to connect to the grill on the go. Also, the Davy Crockett has a temperature increment of 5° which allows very precise cooking and isn’t featured on any of the other low budget models.
Other features include:
- 219 square inch cooking area.
- Advanced touch pad controller with an integrated meat thermometer that makes checking the internal meat temperature as easy as flicking a switch.
- Included adapters so you can run it from a standard outlet or a 12V battery or cigarette lighter.
Overall, the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett is one of the best budget pellet smokers available right now. It’s compact size and portable design makes it ideal for bringing the BBQ to tailgates, campouts and more. It does have a relatively small cooking area but it is still big enough for a decent size rack of ribs.
So now you know that we love the Davy Crockett, how does it fair against the old origin, the Traeger Junior Elite.
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Traeger Junior Elite Pellet Grill Pellet Smoker
Traeger was the company that started the whole revolution of pellet smokers, so you know their products are going to be some of the best on the market. For our comparison we’ve decided to use one of the best know Traeger grills – the Traeger Junior Elite Pellet Smoker.
We’ll start by saying that the Junior Elite is actually one of our least favourite out of the Traeger Elite series of pellet grills, but seeing as we’re going to be focusing on the budget range this is the most appropriate.
The Junior Elite is a relatively small pellet smoker that would make a nice addition to any garden. It is portable but not to the same degree as the Davy Crockett. It produces great quality meat and is very simple to use. The digital controller works well and takes the effort out of the cooking and the whole thing heats up very quickly. The Junior Elite has a nice sized cooking area at 300 square inches. This makes it noticeable bigger than the Davy Crockett. It does lack the folding legs and portablility that we love about the Davy Crocket but makes up for it with more traditional benefits like the larger cooking area.
Other features include:
- 11 setting digital thermostat
- Easy start button
- Ash collecting bucket
So, whilst the Traeger and the Davy Crockett are definitely similar they are aimed at slightly different markets, so the comparison isn’t clean cut. When deciding between the two it will eventually come down to what you want. However, we from our experience and research we have found that the Traeger Junior Elite tends to have problems with the build quality and the wood pellets run out very quickly during cooking. Having to refill the smoker isn’t a huge problem but it does take away the set it and forget it aspect that makes pellet smokers so desirable.
Read our full Traeger Junior Elite review for more information.
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Green Mountain Grills Davy Crocket vs Traeger Junior Elite
So which one is the best?
Ultimately this is going to be dependant on what you’re looking for from a smoker. If you want something to take camping with you then the Davy Crockett is absolutely perfect. If you’re looking for a small backyard smoker then the Traeger is well worth buying.
If we had to choose we would go with the Davy Crockett in most circumstances. The smaller size is made up for with the superior build quality and the huge amount of features that they’ve managed to cram into the small smoker. It also has the ability to be taken and used virtually anywhere. We think that even if you don’t use it for camping or tailgating it’s still the better smoker.
Both of these brands are well worth your time and money, but for the budget end of the spectrum we think the Green Mountain Grills Davy Crocket is superior.
If you’re looking to spend a bit more, then the decision becomes a lot harder and generally swings towards Traeger as they have a great line-up of fantastic grills in the mid-range and high end categories. For example, their Texas Elite series and even the Select Elite are both highly coveted and well respected grills that are perfect mid to high end examples. They both do exact what you’d expect with a focus on the simplicity of the cook.
On the other hand, the Green Mountain Grill Daniel Boone is also a good choice for a more premium model. This has a focus on packing as many features into the grill as possible and comes as a Wifi and non-Wifi version. If you want the absolute most for your money then the Daniel Boone is a good choice.
If we had to choose between the two brands as a whole then we’d probably choose Traeger due their experience and larger range of smokers. There’s a good chance that if you want a pellet smoker then there is a Traeger that will be just right for you.
We hope this has helped you decide which of the best pellet grill brands are for you. If you have any questions or think we may have missed something, then please comment below or connect with us on Facebook.