Most grilling enthusiasts will always debate on which is the best. Between Kamado Joe vs Big Green Egg, which one would you prefer? Well, you might not be able to make an informed decision especially if you haven’t had the chance to use both grills. Anyway, you don’t have to worry because I have tested both models a couple of times. I will compare and contrast these two so that you can be in a better position to choose the one which suits your needs.
As you well know, the Big Green Egg has been around for a while which explains why most grillers own it. The Kamado Joe Grill happens to be the latest model and looks like it is kicking it pretty well. To understand how these two products compare, let’s jump straight to the nitty-gritty details of each and then we’ll do a side by side comparison.
Big Green Egg vs Kamado Joe
Kamado Joe Review
The Kamado Joe II Classic is one of the few high-end ceramic cookers that oozes innovation and elegance. In fact, its presence in the market has presented tough competition to most popular brands. More and more customers are merely opting to splash their cash on the Kamado Joe. So, what is so special? Well, you are just about to find out the features and performance of the hyped Kamado Joe Classic II
Air Lift Hinge
All ceramic Kamados are well known for having heavy dome lids. This means that the lid can crack if mishandled. To avoid such instances, manufacturers have been looking for ways to protect the lid from breaking. Today, the Kamado Joe has come up with a proprietary airlift hinge which is said to reduce the overall weight of the lid by approximately 96%. Surprisingly, you can lift the dome lid with a finger. It doesn’t require much effort, and most importantly, you can stop it at any position you want.
Amazing Air Control
The Kamado Joe Classic II comes with a well-designed top vent which allows smoke to escape as well as controlling airflow. This vent works hand in hand with the bottom vent to ensure that the chamber has the right temperatures. The awesome thing about this is that the top vent has been designed in a way that will prevent snow and rain from finding its way to the interior.
This grill also features fiberglass and plush wire mesh on the lip of the lower bowl and dome lid. These features are so convenient because they prevent unwanted air from entering the cooking chamber.
Lower Intake Vent
Unlike most Kamados, the Classic II version comes with a nice and effective ash removal system. It has a drawer that slides through the lower intake vent. This drawer collects all the ash as the charcoal burns. You don’t need to use an ash tool to scrape the ash from the vent.
Divide & Conquer Grill System
The Kamado Joe was the first ceramic grill to feature the divide and conquer system. It is described as a unique multi-level grate design which works with the help of a heat deflection system. I personally love the system because it allows you to cook different foods simultaneously and at different temperatures. This unique feature helps you to make excellent tasty meals without burning them.
All kamados come with a firebox bowl that is placed in the inside. As you well know, ceramic bowls tend to crack after some time because of the contraction and expansion that happens. To avoid this from happening, the Kamado Joe uses an Advanced Multi-Panel Firebox. The AMP Firebox features a segmented design which allows the ceramic segments to expand and contract without cracking.
Big Green Egg Review
This amazing grill has been in the market for a much longer time as compared to the Kamado Joes. In fact, it is the pioneer of the ceramic grills and so far it has been amazing for most owners. The BGE is very reliable when it comes to making some nice flavored burgers, pork chops, and all types of meats. The good thing about the BGE is that you can use it as an oven to cook your cobblers, breads, and pizzas.
With this, you will have an easy time controlling the temperatures in the cooking chamber. Moreover, the BGE can achieve temperatures of up to 600 degrees. In case you want to cook with low temperatures, the Big Green Egg is a perfect choice.
Cooking on this grill is a bit economical because you will not use a lot of charcoal. This can be attributed to the fact that it is made using insulating ceramics. Besides, It comes with vents that help in controlling the temperatures. One of the vents is located on top of the dome lid while the other one is at the ash section.
The Big Green Egg package does not come with all the accessories. You will have to pay extra cash for any accessories that you will need. This explains why you will have to pay a high price for the entire package. Besides, you will have to pay a fee for the accessories to be installed.
Kamado Grill Comparison
Kamado Joe KJ23RHC Classic II Charcoal Grill
Ceramic and Steel
46.5" W x 48" H x 28" D
Big Green Egg
28 x 24 x 22 inches
Now that I have already outlined the features of both models, let jump straight to the comparison. For this section, I’ll cover the performance, Innovation, Price, Durability, Customer Service & Warranty.
Well, when it comes to performance, there is no major difference between the Big Green Egg and the Kamado Joe. However, I still find the Kamado grill to perform better than the BGE because of the extra features. I also noticed that the Classic Joe is able to control the temperatures way better than the BGE. Besides, the Kamado grill is quite versatile especially because of its Divide & Conquer system.
Although the price of the Joe Classic II seems a bit expensive that the Big Green Egg, you will note that both packages have a huge difference. Once you take into account the features that are included in the Kamado Joe Classic II, you will agree with me that this model is the best bang for the back. The price of the BGE does not cover the shelves, cart, slide out ash drawer, Kontrol tower top tent, diffuser plate for smoking, grill gripper, SS locking latch, and Wire Mesh Fiberglass Gasket. This just means that you will have to spend a lot of money to buy all those accessories.
Honestly, it goes without saying that the Big Green Egg has been in the market for a very long time. Competing with such a company has forced Kamado Joe to invest in further research and come up with more advanced ceramic grills. In fact, the only reason that Kamado Joe has been able to conquer the industry is through innovative ideas.
For starters, the Kamado Joe comes with a unique and efficient Divide and Conquer cooking system. I also noticed that most of the features of this grill oozes quality and elegance. On the other hand, the BGE is yet to announce any new accessory that will improve the performance of the grill. For now, you will have to go with the Kamado Joe series if you care so much about innovation. For the Big Green Egg, we’ll have to wait if they have any plans on improving their product line-up.
In terms of durability, the Kamado Joe does better than the Big Green Egg. The first thing I noticed is that Kamado Joe comes with parts that are built to withstand harsh conditions. For starters, all the metallic parts are resistant to corrosion and rust. Besides, the ceramic fire holder has been designed in a way that it won’t crack due to expansion and contraction.
Things are bit different with the Big Green Egg grill. Most of the metallic parts will start rusting immediately after the paint peels off. The grill is always prone to damage from fading, oxidation and rust.
The side shelves of the BGE are made from wood which is definitely great. However, they are not as durable as those of the Kamado Joe Classic II. For your information, the side shelves are made from plastic which can resist different external factors.
Warranty is one of the crucial factors you should consider when purchasing high ticket items. You should check the warranty terms in the official websites of both companies. Are there any similarities or differences in terms of warranty? Sure, both models have a lifetime warranty on the ceramic components as well as the workmanship.
Both companies provide a limited five-year warranty on all the metal parts. Of course, this includes all the components that are made using cast iron and stainless steel. Of course, the warranty does not cover any damages that arise from oxidation, fading, and rusting.
The customer service that is offered by both companies differs significantly. For example, the BGE customer service varies depending on your location. Those who reside in the United States claim that their customer service is just awesome. Besides, the company has a forum where the EggHeads can discuss and share issues.
The Kamado Joe Customer service is definitely on another level. Most clients have praised the customer care department for providing stellar services. Moreover, the company also has a forum where members can talk about recipes and any issues related to the ceramic grill.
From my comprehensive review, it is evident that Kamado Joe is much better than the Big Green Egg. Its innovation, performance and versatility are the main factors that set this ceramic grill apart. Choosing a Kamado Joe over a Big Green Egg is the best decision you will ever make.