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As a person who prefers steaks cooked over open flame, I tend to zero in on any opportunity to cook outside on a charcoal grill. However, when I travel or go car camping, I’m hesitant to bring one with me, as most of the portable options are either too heavy or too bulky to be packed into a car full of sleeping bags, mats, and other camping supplies.
Then I saw an ad for the Everdure Cube, a cute, square-shaped box that seemed to be a promising alternative. To test its functionality and portability, I took this grill on a multi-day camping trip and used it to cook breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
About the Everdure Cube Charcoal Portable Grill
Everdure is an Australian grill equipment brand that was founded in 1935. In 2016, the brand partnered with Heston Blumenthal to launch a new line of grill ranges, as well as portable grills like the Cube. Blumenthal is a British celebrity chef whose restaurants include The Fat Duck, a three-star Michelin restaurant in the U.K.
Unlike other portable grills that are bulky and round, the Everdure Cube is compact and lightweight. Its shape gives it a key advantage over Weber grills, as it’s easier to pack into the back of a car.
This portable grill features a bamboo food preparation board, a food-grade storage tray, and the chrome grill rack—all of which is held together by the safety latches on either side. Inside the grill, you’ll also find a charcoal grid and a charcoal chamber. The bottom heat shield that prevents overheating is located below the charcoal chamber.
How to use a portable charcoal grill
Portable charcoal grills aren’t too complicated, even if you’re new to grilling. The first thing to keep in mind is the charcoal to food ratio, which helps when purchasing supplies. For each pound of food you cook, you’ll need about 25 to 30 briquettes or a couple of pounds of lump charcoal for a small grill (the Everdure Cube falls in this category).
When you’re ready to cook, make sure the grill is set up on a flat, even outdoor surface. Form a pyramid of charcoal around a fire starter of your choice, and light the fire starter.
Then, wait 25 to 30 minutes until the briquettes turn gray and ashy. The color change is a good indicator of the heat reaching optimal cooking temperature (about 550°F), which means you’re good to throw your prepared steaks or burger patties on the grill.
What I like
It’s super portable and easy to carry
I used to own the Weber Jumbo Joe Grill, which is the best portable charcoal grill we’ve tested. It produced consistently fantastic results but its round shape and oddly-long metal legs made it bulky and difficult to pack into a car for transportation.
Unlike the Jumbo Joe, the Cube is built for traveling, camping, and tailgating, as its square shape and compact design allowed me to easily pack it. I can even stack soft bags, pillows, and clothes on top of it in my car.
It keeps the surface underneath cool
I’ve had no problem putting the grill on wooden and metal surfaces, as it kept the surface cool to touch. In addition to the heat shield inside the grill, there are four rubber legs underneath the box, which further prevent overheating and encourage airflow.
It’s easy to clean
There’s a removable charcoal tray inside the grill. To clean, simply lift up the tray when it’s completely cooled and cold to the touch. Dump the cooled ash in a trash bag.
Fortunately, it doesn’t require too much grilling knowledge to be able to figure out this attractive gadget. The user manual is helpful, but you can also check out Everdure’s video tutorial.
It’s spacious enough to accommodate cookware
As this is the only heat source we brought on our camping trip, I relied on this portable grill for every meal, which included boiling water for coffee, making fried eggs and spam in a cast iron pan, and searing delicate salmon. Despite covering my stainless steel with soot, the overall experience was great when using pots and pans on the grill.
What I don’t like
The grilling grate could use some improvement
Though I didn’t run into issues grilling large pieces of meat, I did lose a couple of burger patties through the wide gaps in the grate when flipping. If the grate was slightly more narrow, I think it would be less likely that smaller pieces of food will fall through.
It’s probably too small for effectively feed a crowd
This grill is on the small side, measuring 13.67 by 16.73 by 9.05 inches, so it may not be great for a large birthday or a tailgate party unless you’re willing to cook burgers and hotdogs in batches. The cooking surface can accommodate about four burger patties or two pieces of standard-sized ribeye steaks, with space for flipping. However, as the grill can get really hot, you probably won’t spend too much time on each batch.
Should you buy the Everdure Portable Charcoal Grill?
Yes, especially if you enjoy camping with your family or like to host tailgate parties with friends. This lightweight and portable gadget surprised me and changed the way I cook on the go. It’s more user-friendly than traditional portable grill models, which aren’t typically as portable as advertised for a small woman like me.
If you’re interested in the best portable grills we’ve tested, check out our full list.
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.