If you ever wondered what the difference between Kamado Joe and Big Green egg aside from its color is, then you are not alone. A quick search on Google will yield many results. They are both classics and loved by barbeque enthusiasts.
Which is better between Kamado Joe vs. Big Green Egg, you cannot make a quick decision unless you have all the information on its features and performance. If you don’t have the time to do all the research, don’t worry. We are bringing you the pro-con lists for these two brands right here. We will compare and contrast the two most prominent names in grills and let you choose which one suits you best.
A Quick Background
To give you a little background of each, Big Green Egg is the biggest name when it comes to kamado grills, while Kamado Joe is an up and coming name in the arena. These two brands are often in a face-off because they are both players of kamado grills.
Big Green Eggs or EGG is the famous brand that introduced the kamado-style charcoal barbeque grill made from ceramic in 1974. Its inventor is Ed Fisher, and the company started in Georgia, USA. Their brand is recognizable by its unique dark green color, and their grills are multi-purpose. It is an oven, a grill, and a smoker. The sizes of these grills can range from the mini to the double extra-large.
Kamado Joe, on the other hand, was a relatively new player, having introduced its first line of kamado grills in 2009. The company was founded by Bobby Brennan and is based in Georgia, the USA too. A distinctive red color marks its product. It competed with Big Green Egg head-on by offering grilling accessories inclusive of its price, which the latter is not.
Both brands offer high-quality grills in almost the same sizes. What makes them different are what’s included in those grills and the extra features that affect their performance. So, let’s now take a deep dive into each of them for you to have a better decision on which product to choose.
To compare these two brands, we have to compare two grills that are of similar sizes and almost the same function. These two models are the Kamado Joe Classic III and the Big Green Egg Large. Here we will be comparing their build quality, the warranty, the accessories that come with it, and the brand’s support.
When it comes to build quality, there is no clear winner in the Kamado Joe vs. Big Green Eggs debate. Both models have fantastic built. Although Big Green Eggs is loud and proud of its use of NASA-pioneered ceramics on its items, there is no significant difference in the quality or the thickness of the grills.
What is interesting about both of these products is neither of these grills is made in the US, with Kamado Joe made in China, and the BGE is manufactured in Mexico. Kamado Joe has a slight advantage over BGE when it comes to the quality of the working parts and the wire mesh fiberglass gasket. BGE only has a standard gasket.
In BGE, the stand is sold separately, and the wheels locks are only screwed together. In the case of Kamado Joe, it comes with the cost, and the stand has a better connection with a heavy-duty galvanized steel.
The big difference of Kamado Grill from Big Green Egg is the former’s emphasis on the innovations. It has a three-tier Divide and Conquer flexible cooking system and a patented Sloroller hyperbolic smoke chamber.
The beauty of the Sloroller is it distributes the heat and smoke in a recirculating and rolling wave, which enhances the smoky flavor and minimizes hotspots. The Divide and Conquer flexible cooking system uses a unique half-moon heat deflector that partially obstructs the heat and with the multi-level layered grates that increases the cooking and lets you cook the food in varying temperatures.
Comparing the price between Kamado Joe vs. Big Green Eggs will give you almost the same amount. However, Kamado Joe throws in the stand into the package, which you have to buy as an extra Big Green Egg. Therefore, for value for money, Kamado Joe has an edge.
Big Green Egg offers a lifetime warranty on its products with a different warranty period for its parts. It covers the ceramic component, including the base, dome, damper box, fire ring, and the firebox provided that you purchase it from an authorized dealer. The gaskets and thermometer have a one-year warranty while the pizza stones and the plate setters have three years.
The ceramic add-ons hinge mechanism, metal top, fire grate, draft door, and cooking grid have five years warranty, and the wooden components get one-year. For Kamado Joe, they have the same warranty period.
Like what we mentioned, Kamado Joe has an advantage on the available accessories to take your grilling experience to another level. Each barbeque kit includes the cast iron stand with wheels, ash tool, grill gripper, HDPE folding side shelves, and the slide-out ash drawer. You can add the JoeTisserie, a rotisserie that can fit inside the grill and a cast-iron Dutch oven for your very own chili maker.
Pros and Cons
- Offers versatility, you can cook, bake, and grill
- Innovative with the Divide and Conquer system and Sloroller hyperbolic smoke chamber in higher models
- The whole grilling kit comes with accessories
- Durable and made with high-quality materials
- Easy to clean with the slide-out ash drawer
- It is heavy and difficult to move
- You need to invest time to learn how to use it
- It takes a long time to cool down
Big Green Egg Grills
- It offers versatility as it can be used as a grill, a smoker, and a regular oven
- Equipped with precise temperature control
- Versatile cover
- Sealed firebox allows for easy lighting
- Easy and safe to use
- With enough ventilation to maintain the cooking temperature
- The outer ceramic shell does not get hot even if the internal temperature is high
- You need to buy the stand separately
- You need to invest more as you have to purchase the accessories
Top 3 Kamado Joe Grills
1. Kamado Joe BJ24RHC, Big Joe II Charcoal Grill
Kamado Joe is one of the best charcoal grill has a Divide & Conquer Flexible Cooking System, which gives you the flexibility to cook your food at multiple levels and varying temperatures. It also has a durable wire mesh fiberglass gasket for an air-tight seal. Fitted with an airlift hinge, it reduces the weight of the dome so that you can lift the lid of the kamado easily.
Another significant feature of this model is the Kontrol Tower on its top vent made from cast aluminum, which facilitates consistent airflow. At the same time, it also prevents the rain from entering the grill. The split firebox is designed to create a separate working space.
This is a multi-use cooker that serves as a grill, oven, and smoker in one and can be ready to cook in a matter of 15 days. The Kamado Joe BJ24RHC, Big Joe II Charcoal Grill, is made with thick ceramic that can contain the heat, maintain its temperature, and is porous to keep your meat moist for juicy and tender food with deep wood-fired flavor.
2. Kamado Joe KJ23RHC Ceramic, Classic II Charcoal Grill
Just like any other kamado-style grill, this model is expensive, but it can easily manage low-temperature smoking and high-heat grilling too. It also has convenient features, which make it one of the most versatile kamado grills in the market today.
This Kamado Joe KJ23RHC Ceramic, Classic II Charcoal Grill is a sophisticated grill and has impressive heat retention due to its massive ceramic and thick walls of the interior firebox that contains the coals. The bottom and top vents are adjustable too, and users can control the airflow into the firebox and the temperature of the grill. It is also efficient because the dense ceramic can hold as much heat as it can, and you don’t need to put much coal to keep the grill at the right temperature.
The cooking area is expansive, which is big enough to cook things. Its grill can do stunningly well at various temperatures. This model follows the other Kamado Joe grill design with a thermometer built-in on top of the domed lid. Design-wise, this model is like a sports car of the Kamado grill, red and shiny. It also comes with added convenience in the form of a metal stand, locking back wheels, and plastic side shelves.
3. Kamado Joe KJ13RH Joe Jr Charcoal Grill
The Kamado Joe KJ13RH Joe Jr Charcoal Grill has a stainless-steel hinged cooking grate that allows you toad coal while cooking. It is the perfect grill for an ideal backyard barbeque. Like other models under Kamado Joe, it is a three-in-one cooker; it is a smoker, a grill, and an oven. It is excellently built with ceramics of 1 ¼ inch in thickness that can hold and maintain the temperature while cooking. That means you can save a lot of fuel and save you money.
The thick and porous ceramic also keeps the moisture in the food resulting in delicious and flavorful food. The ceramic grills have a heat-resistant ceramic coating to make it look good while enjoying a more significant cooking area of 19 square inches. It also offers versatility, which is expected since Kamado is firing all cylinders to topple its competition. The Sloroller and the Divide & Conquer Flexible Cooking System push the boundaries to take the grilling experience to the next level.
If you are looking for a durable and longer-lasting grill, then you better buy this model. It is made of a commercial-grade 304 stainless steel cooking grate that is hinged to add more coals easily. The draft door allows for smooth airflow and temperature management. The lid hinge and the fire grate are both made to last and superior heating performance. It also has a built-in thermometer to monitor the cooking temperature, even with the closed lid.
Top Big Green Egg Grill
Big Green Egg Charcoal Grill, Large
This Big Green Egg Charcoal Grill is popular among backyard cooks. It can reach a temperature of more than 600 degrees and hold them as low as 200 degrees, which would be perfect for smoking steaks and searing briskets. The large model is the most popular of all BGE grills because it has a large cooking area of 255 square of primary cooking space. Suffice it to say; this is large enough to cook a 20-pound turkey. A grill this size can give you plenty of space to smoke or grill different kinds of food.
The Big Green Egg grill is made with a hard, ceramic shell that can withstand a wide range of temperatures. There is no worry about cracking even with the heat. What makes it perfect grilling equipment is it contains the heat inside while the outside remains cool. This design efficiency makes it fuel-efficient too. You don’t need much charcoal to cook.
The heat inside this smoker-grill is controlled by the vent at the bottom of the grill and another at the top. It is easy to use yet allows a significant amount of control. All in all, BGE still commands the attention of grilling enthusiasts even without much change in its design. This grill delivers.
Which to Buy?
Declaring the winner in this Kamado Joe vs. Big Green Egg debate can be a little tricky. But based on the features, we are leaning towards Kamado Joe for the best in the kamado grill category. It pushes the boundaries of grilling with its innovations. We recommend Kamado Joe KJ13RH Joe Jr Charcoal Grill. It is a decent size Kamado Joe, easy on the pocket yet truly delivers through the features that the brand is known for.
Big Green Egg is the pioneer of Kamado-style grilling; you cannot deny the fact that it is still a relevant brand. If you are a fan of its color, you will not be disappointed because it cooks excellent food as well.
- A Quick Background
- The Face-off
- Pros and Cons
- Top 3 Kamado Joe Grills
- Top Big Green Egg Grill
- Which to Buy?