Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and Smokers

Can't decide between Camp Chef and Pit Boss? We compared them for you.
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Last updated: July 14, 2021
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Can't decide between Camp Chef and Pit Boss? We compared them for you.
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There are a few different grill and  types on the market but for those looking for quality, comparing Camp Chef vs Pit Boss is an obvious choice. These brands have earned the respect of grillers, due to the high-quality models they produce, though their grills do have some distinct differences. This may have you leaning towards one brand over the other. If you’re not familiar with these two companies, let’s break down the Camp Chef vs Pit Boss models to see what their grills have to offer.

Brands comparison

Camp Chef was founded in 1990 by Ty Measom, who was frustrated with the camping grill models on the market and decided to create a more portable, yet powerful, grill. After the Pro60 hit the market, many more grills of varying types and sizes followed, earning Camp Chef its place in the backyard cooking market.

Pit Boss created their first grill in 1999 by the Thiessen family. They focused on durability and high-quality models, creating a variety of sizes to choose from to give their customers exactly what they need in a grill.

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and SmokersPrices

When it comes to pellet grills, Camp Chef’s models range from $585 to $1600, depending on the size of the grill and the features it includes. Pit Boss grills are a bit cheaper, with their tabletop models starting at $349 and their larger grills costing about $1000 or more. This makes the Pit Boss models a bit cheaper, though they may not offer the extras that Camp Chef’s grills include.

Warranty

Most of the Camp Chef grills on the market include a 3-year warranty, which is fine for these types of products. Pit Boss offers a bit more time to try out your grill, thanks to the 5-year warranty offered with every one they sell.

Who uses them

Both Camp Chef and Pit Boss have a variety of grill designs that make them a good choice for almost everyone. Camp Chef doesn’t separate theirs into series that focus on beginners or pros and instead focus more on the size and the features each model has to offer. The Pit Boss grills separate theirs into the Sportsman, Navigator, Portable, or Pro Series, so you can pick the model that fits your lifestyle.

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and SmokersDesigns

Both of these brands have a variety of sizes to choose from when it comes to their grills. Camp Chef has portable, regular, and huge grills to choose from. There are also different types, including pellet grills, propane grills, flat tops, smokers, and even a few ovens. Pit Boss also offers some variety, so you can get portable, tabletop, regular, or huge pro-grade options, depending on your needs. They have pellet, gas, or charcoal options, plus a few smokers for you to consider.

Materials used

Both of these brands use high-quality materials for their grills, though not the same ones. Camp Chef grills are usually made with stainless steel, while Pit Boss favors 14- or 16-gauge steel for their models. They also both include durable carts, often with lower storage shelves.

The wheels are a different story, though. Camp Chef uses plastic or resin wheels, both of which roll smoothly over most surfaces. Pit Boss includes steel, spoked wheels on many of their models, which don’t roll as nicely.

Temperature control and range

Temperature control is one of the most important features of a grill. The newer Camp Chef grill models include dials that allow you to adjust the temperature in 5-degree Fahrenheit increments, so you can set it exactly where you need it. These grills also usually have a range of about 160 to 500 degrees F, so you can cook as slow or fast as you like.

The Pit Boss models have user-friendly controls that offer temperature increments of 15 to 25 degrees F, which isn’t quite as accurate, though still usable for your grilling needs. They also usually have a range of about 180 to 500 degrees.

Cooking surfaces

Both of these brands have a wide variety of grill sizes to choose from, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding the right one for the space you have available and the number of people you’re generally feeding. The Pit Boss models offer a bit more for the money but do have smaller warming racks than the Camp Chef grills, so you need to pick which of these features is more important to you when choosing a grill.

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and SmokersHopper capacity

The hopper capacity determines how much fuel you can add and how often you have to refill it. The standard hopper size on Camp Chef’s grills is about 22 pounds, which is a decent size. The Pit Boss grills have more variety in this area, with hoppers that have at least a 20-pound capacity on their full-size grills, so you get what you need for the grill size you’re purchasing.

Safety features

There aren’t a lot of safety features included with grills since using them forces you to rely on some common sense to keep from getting burned. There are some safety features included with both of these brands, though, including removable ash pans and drip trays or buckets to keep cleanup easy and avoid burns. The handles are also heat-resistant, though wearing gloves is best, just in case.

Ease of use

Complicated grills aren’t fun to use, which is why these two brands maintain simple controls and usage. The Camp Chef models have updated controllers, large displays, and extra features like Wi-Fi connectivity and built-in meat probes to ensure your food saves the needed nutrients.

The Pit Boss models also have clear displays and basic interfaces for the controls to make them easy to use, even for grilling newbies. They don’t always offer the extras that Camp Chef has but you can find what you need if you look hard enough.

Accessories

A wide variety of accessories makes it easy to find the right gear for your specific grill. Camp Chef has a lot of offer, including cooking utensils, magnetic hoods, pizza peels, cutting boards, racks, carry bags, covers, pots, pans, tables, and thermometers.

Pit Boss also has a lot to offer, such as cooking tools, grilling gloves, a grill wok, magnetic hooks, a burger press, aprons, racks, and much more. They also have a few covers and a variety of cast iron items, including pans, griddles, roasters, and ovens, so you have everything you need to create the perfect meal.

Popular Grill Models Comparison

Camp Chef

The Camp Chef PG24MZG SmokePro includes a Slide and Grill feature, which includes a sliding tray over the flames for direct or indirect heating. This allows you to smoke, grill, braise, bake, roast, or barbecue on one handy unit.

It uses a Gen 2 PID controller with 1-10 smoke settings for heating. There are some temperature fluctuation issues due to some gaps in the lid, though this can be remedied with some gaskets.

Other great features include a folding front shelf, a handy ash cleanout system for quick cleanup, and a total of 811 square inches of cooking space on the main and removable warming racks.

Pros:

  • Digital controls
  • Huge cooking area
  • Multiple uses
  • Folding front shelf

Cons:

  • Temperature fluctuations

Pit Boss

The Pit Boss 700FB has an innovative Flame Broiler feature, which is a slide-plate that adjusts the amount of direct or indirect heating you’re using. This gives you more cooking options, so you can grill, smoke, bake, roast, or cook a variety of tasty dishes.

The porcelain-coated cast iron grates give you 700 square inches of cooking space on the main and warming racks. The Digital Control Center includes a temperature dial and an LCD screen, though there is some heat loss that may cause temperature fluctuations. This grill also includes electronic ignition, fan-forced air, and a 21-pound hopper. It’s made of heavy-gauge steel for long-lasting use.

Pros:

  • Digital controls
  • Large cooking area
  • Porcelain-coated cast iron grates
  • Thermostatic temperature control

Cons:

  • Temperature fluctuations

          Camp Chef Pursuit 20 PIT BOSS SPORTSMAN
Total cooking area 501 sq in 387 sq in
Fuel Pellets Pellets
Temperature ranges 160-500°F 180-500°F
Hopper capacity 10 lbs 19 lbs
Dimensions 38 x 18.5 x 21 in 38.35 x 25.2 x 37.5 in
Weight 82 lbs 79.8 lbs
Warranty 3-year limited 5-year limited
VIEW ON AMAZON VIEW ON AMAZON

Camp Chef

Those looking for a portable grill may want to check out the Camp Chef Pursuit 20. It’s compact, with foldable legs, heavy-duty wheels, and locks on the chamber and hopper lid for easy transport. It is a bit heavy at 80 pounds, so you may need help lifting it, though.

There are leg levelers for height adjustment on uneven terrain, an easy ash cleanout system, and a grease bucket for less mess. The Pursuit also features 501 square inches of cooking space, a Gen 2 PID controller with a digital display, 2 meat probes, and Slide and Grill technology for direct or indirect heat, depending on what you’re cooking.

Pros:

  • PID controller
  • Compact design
  • Foldable legs with levelers
  • Digital display

Cons:

  • Heavy

Pit Boss

The portable Pit Boss Sportsman model is a bit heavy to move on your own, but the wheeled folding legs and latching hood help to maintain its portability. Despite the compact design, this model still includes 387 square inches of cooking space on the porcelain-coated cast iron cooking grates, so you have plenty of room to cook a large meal.

Other handy features include the automatic start up and cool down functions, digital control board with an easy-to-read LED readout, built-in meat probe, and fan-forced convection cooking for consistent, even heating.

Pros:

  • Premium-gauge stainless steel
  • Folding legs
  • Digital control board
  • Cast iron grates

Cons:

  • Heavy

More Pit Boss Grill Models

As well as the models we’ve described above, there are a few other Pit Boss grills worth considering.

Pit Boss® Portable 150

The Pit Boss Portable 150 grill is a tabletop model that fits anywhere, even with limited space. Despite its compact size, you still get 256 square inches of cooking space on the porcelain-coated steel grate.

This model has a 7-pound hopper capacity, though there are some issues with backburning in the auger at higher temperatures. It is made of premium-grade steel, with a digital control board and an LED readout for temperature monitoring.

Other handy features include the automatic start up and cool down, the fan-forced convection cooking, the grease management system for easy cleaning, and the locking lid for travel.

Pros

  • Slide plate
  • Included probe
  • Compact size
  • Locking lid

Cons

  • Some issues with pellets burning back into hopper

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and SmokersPIT BOSS 440 Ranch Hand

Though it is a compact model with features that allow some portability, at about 130 pounds, the Ranch Hand isn’t exactly travel-friendly. It does have some other handy features to make this easier, though, including the collapsible leg design and the rolling wheels.

For grilling and smoking, there is a 5-pound hopper, dial-in temperature control with a range of 180 to 550 degrees F, an auto-start and shut-off, a sliding flame broiler plate, porcelain-coated cast iron grates, a warming rack, and rear exhaust that allows for convection heating. A lower storage rack and side table give you room for all your gear

Pros

  • Collapsible wheeled legs
  • Innovative flame broiler
  • Dial-in temperature control
  • Rear exhaust

Cons

  • Heavy

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and SmokersPIT BOSS PB1230G

The Pit Boss PB1230G is part of the Navigator series, but unlike other grills this brand has to offer, it allows you to smoke and grill at the same time. This is due to the dual cooking areas, one of which includes a pellet hopper while the other runs on propane. Together, they give you more than 1000 square inches of cooking space on the porcelain-coated cast iron grates and warming racks.

The 16-pound hopper uses a dial-in digital control board with an LED display. The grill side uses dials for the temperature control, so you control each side independently. There are also two meat probes for added convenience. The unit is made of premium-gauge stainless steel for durability and has wheeled legs for moving this beast around.

Pros

  • Dual cooking areas
  • Cast iron grates
  • Two meat probes
  • Huge cooking area

Cons

  • Tricky assembly

More Camp Chef Grill Models

If you’re interested in Camp Chef grills, there are also a few more of them to check out before settling on one.

Camp Chef FTG600

The Camp Chef FTG600 is a flat top grill that comes with both grill grates and a large griddle plate, so you can use it for breakfast, dinner, and everything in between. The griddle has leg levelers to keep it as flat as possible when cooking. The four steel burners give you 12000 BTU/hr and light with a matchless ignition system.

This model also features two folding side shelves, two large bottom shelves, and a propane tank holder, so there is a place for everything you need to grill. There is also a handy grease management system that includes a grease tray and bucket for easy cleanup.

Pros

  • Grill and griddle plates included
  • Grease management system
  • Lots of storage
  • Stainless steel burners

Cons

  • No storage for griddle when not in use

Camp Chef PG14

For those who want some modern features on their grill, the Camp Chef PG14 includes a PID controller that you can connect to the Camp Chef Connect App through your smartphone to monitor and adjust the settings. You can use the PID controller on the unit if you prefer to stay close while you’re grilling.

This model also features Slide and Grill technology for direct and indirect heating, an ash cleanout system, a stainless-steel firebox, and four stainless steel temperature probes. It also comes with a Sidekick, which is a single burner, 14-inch cooking area that can be used with this brand’s oven, griddle, stockpot, and much more.

Pros

  • WiFi & Bluetooth PID controller
  • 4 meat probes
  • Slide and Grill technology
  • Sidekick included

Cons

  • Connectivity issues with android devices

Camp Chef Big Gas Grill

The Big Gas Grill has three cast aluminum burners beneath a 608 square inch grate, giving you a huge cooking area that you can use with a variety of Camp Chef’s cooking gear. To get you started, the Grill Box BB90L is included, so you can grill some steaks, burgers, chicken, or anything else you like.

This model also features matchless ignition, removable and adjustable legs, a single deluxe folding shelf, and simple control knobs for quick temperature adjustment. Wind Baffle Burner Technology keeps the grill running, even on windy days.

Pros

  • Removable grill box
  • Removable legs
  • Matchless ignition
  • Simple controls

Cons

  • Gets quite hot

Popular Smoker Models Comparison

Camp Chef Smoke Vault

Those who want to focus on smoking will love this model by Camp Chef. It has a spacious interior with room for two adjustable smoking racks, a jerky smoking rack, a water pan, and a heavy-gauge steel wood chip tray.

The porcelain base is removable to make cleanup a breeze. Three damper valves allow you to adjust the airflow inside the unit. There is also a door thermometer but it is known to be inconsistent, so a separate temperature gauge may be needed. The matchless snap ignition makes it easy to start the unit when you’re ready to cook.

Pros:

  • Spacious interior
  • Steel wood chip tray
  • Adjustable damper valves
  • Easy setup

Cons:

  • Inaccurate door thermometer

PIT BOSS 77435

The Pit Boss 77465 Vertical LP Gas Smoker has a stylish red finish that catches the eye long before you start smoking. Of course, this model does more than look good. It includes two stainless steel burners with a dual valve burner system that offers a range of 100 to 350 degrees F.

This model also features a large viewing window, external access to both the wood chip tray and the grease tray, four adjustable porcelain-coated racks, and an external temperature gauge. The legs elevate the frame to give you easy access to everything you cook at all times.

Pros:

  • Stainless steel burners
  • Large viewing window
  • External access to wood chip and grease trays
  • Adjustable cooking grids

Cons:

  • Single burner adjustment

Camp Chef vs Pit Boss: Choose the Superior Grills and Smokers

In conclusion

When comparing Camp Chef vs Pit Boss, you may have noticed that they have a lot of the same features and a variety of options to choose from, no matter which brand you favor. For the more budget-conscious, Pit Box’s grills are usually a bit cheaper and favor cast iron and premium-gauge steel over other materials. Camp Chef prefers more modern features, like PID controllers, many of which have WiFi connectivity, for more accuracy. Of course, when it comes to grills, your personal preferences will likely have you picking one brand over the other.

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