If you’re looking for one of the hardiest and most durable grills, ever, then look no further than the Original PK Grill and Smoker.

DESIGN + VERSATILITY | Extremely Versatile, Quality Design

If you’re looking for one of the hardiest and most durable grills, ever, then look no further than the Original PK Grill and Smoker. The PK is made to last a lifetime, is simple to use, but still makes for an exceptional grilling experience. Portable Kitchen Grills (a.k.a. PK Grills) originated in Texas in 1952, the same year as Weber, another top grilling dog. Ownership and production have been tossed around for the past 50 years, but PK Grills are making a comeback with new ownership and the fact that these grills are seriously some of the best.

Aluminum is known for NEVER rusting and also for being a great conductor and holder of heat.

The Original PK Grill and Smoker has a retro and simple design and is made of a unique cast aluminum grill, very distinct from all other charcoal grills we’ve reviewed. It’s made out of a cast of pure heavy duty aluminum. Aluminum is known for NEVER rusting and also for being a great conductor and holder of heat. This grill has the possibility of lasting your entire adult life, and can maybe even be passed down to your children. The rectangular bottom makes it easier to arrange coals for direct and indirect cooking. Also, the cast aluminum body is more rugged and rustproof than the porcelain-enamel steel that you’ll find with so many charcoal grills.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review

Versatility is also a top feature with the Original PK Grill and Smoker. It can be used to grill, smoke, roast, and even bake because it has excellent capability to hold heat and disperse it evenly in the enclosed grill. It’s also easily portable; just take the body out of the cart and bring it along for all your tailgating, camping, and outdoor adventures. For more outdoor adventures, make sure to check out the best inflatable pools and hammocks.

SAFETY + DURABILITY | Lasts for Decades

Due to aluminum being an excellent conductor of heat, the outside of the Original PK Grill and Smoker can get very hot while cooking, so just be aware of this if there are little ones or other guests hanging out by your grill. Today, you’ll find that most grills are made with a coated steel or stainless steel exterior. However, when Portable Kitchen started up in the 1950’s, aluminum grills were more popular. Due to the aluminum build, PK won’t rust, especially because the cart is even made with aluminum and stainless steel fasteners.

The PK is so durable that it comes with a 10-year warranty, something that’s unheard of in the grilling world.

On the inside, the grilling grate is made of standard nickel plated steel which tends to rust or rot over time, so this will need to be replaced eventually. Fortunately, PK offers a stainless steel grate if this is a concern. Also, the hinges on the PK are a part of the cast aluminum lid so they won’t wear over time. The PK is so durable that it comes with a 10-year warranty, something that’s unheard of in the grilling world.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review Open Lid

PERFORMANCE | Used by Professional Grillers

Ease-of-Use

A simple and easy design makes the Original PK Grill and Smoker a breeze to use for beginners and seasoned grillers alike. The rectangular frame of the PK makes it easy to cook with two-zone (and even three-zone) cooking. It’s an easy grill to use for grilling, smoking, baking, and roasting and can be used for hot and fast heat or low and slow heat.

It’s easy to break down for storage or traveling and doesn’t weigh a ton either.

Setup is a breast due to the simple parts and design. It’s easy to break down for storage or traveling and doesn’t weigh a ton either. The car does come with two durable rubber wheels for easy maneuverability around the yard. As far as actual grilling, this Original PK Grill and Smoker can easily serve around 15 plus people at a time. However, cleanup is a little messy due to there being no ashtray. You have to take the grill grates out, take the entire body and dump it where you want your ashes disposed of. Some users have also stated that ashes can fall out of the bottom dampers, but it didn’t bother them too much.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review Side Table and Under Table

Side and under tables provide convenient storage

 

Heat control is super easy with the Original PK Grill and Smoker. There are four dampers, two on top and two on the bottom, which allows for precise heat control. They are actually positioned so that air flows more evenly throughout this grill as they are evenly spaced throughout the entire body of the grill.

Best Features

So what makes the Original PK Grill and Smoker so amazing and worth so much to so many grillers? Quality and durability. The combination or thick cast aluminum and 4-way venting give grillers a very heat efficient cooking chamber. PK Grills have also become the standard bearer in competitive grilling because of their ability to hold steady temps for very long periods of time, anywhere from 180 to 700+ degrees Fahrenheit. Also, most of the time the same coals can be used for multiple cooks.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review Air Flow and Venting System

This model’s flat and rectangular bottom makes it easier to arrange coals for direct and indirect cooking.

This model’s flat and rectangular bottom makes it easier to arrange coals for direct and indirect cooking. Some users have stated they’ve been able to even get three zones of cooking from the Original PK Grill. The 306 square inch grate runs slightly smaller than the Weber Kettle and is also a little smaller than most charcoal grills we’ve reviewed. But, it is still able to cook about 15 burgers at one time, enough for between 7-15 people (depending on their appetites). The top of the PK is hinged for easy feast access, and the grilling grate is hinged for easy coal access. For easy cleaning, the oven body can be lifted off the cart for cleaning, camping, or tailgating. The cart comes with a removable bottom shelf and side shelf, and let me just say, those shelves are priceless while you’re grilling.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review Portable

Body comes off cart for easy transport

Charcoal briquettes or hardwood lump charcoal can both be used, which demonstrates the exceptional performance in both “hot and fast” grilling or “low and slow” barbecue cooking situations. The cast aluminum body is more rugged and rustproof than porcelain-enamel steel grills that are so popular today. This assures you that your Original PK Grill won’t be wearing down anytime soon.

PRICE + LONGEVITY | High Value

Longevity

There are probably no other grills on the market whether they’re charcoal grills, gas grills, or Kamado grills, that will outlast the Original PK Grill. Also, the PK has features of all of the above grills which makes it very versatile. The cast aluminum frame is NOT going to rust and helps retain heat for even and constant heat distribution for the perfect grilling experience. One item on this grill that may need to be replaced occasionally is the grilling grate, as it’s made of nickel plated steel. PK does offer a stainless steel grate as an option if that’s a concern for you.

Price

Price for the Original PK Grill and Smoker may seem a little high for this simple of a grill, but let’s think about it for a minute. Let’s say you buy a standard grill (for less money) and it’s a reasonably quality grill that will last you maybe twenty years if you’re lucky. Then you buy another grill that maybe lasts you 10 years (because let’s be honest, they don’t make anything like they used to). And maybe you buy another grill that has other features that your first grill doesn’t, like portability or smoking capabilities.

You buy the Original PK Grill ONCE because it will last your entire adult life.

OR you buy the Original PK Grill ONCE because it will last your entire adult life. And, it smokes, roasts, bakes, grills, and is super portable. You can then pass it onto your children or friends someday because it’ll probably look and work about the same as when you first bought it! You’re also getting an unheard of 10-year warranty when you buy the Original PK Grill and Smoker. The warranty itself backs up the quality of this product.

Original PK Grill and Smoker Review Lid Detaches

Lid comes completely off

PROS

  • Versatile, simple, portable design
  • Square shape ideal for two zone cooking
  • Aluminum exterior that never rusts
  • Perfect for low and slow or high and fast cooking
  • Will last a lifetime due to sturdy construction

CONS

  • No ash removal system
  • Thermometer not included

THE BOTTOM LINE | Versatile and Made to Last

If you’re looking for a one-and-done grill, the Original PK Grill and Smoker is it. Its solid cast aluminum build is made to last for your entire grilling life, and more. The versatility that comes with the PK is also something you don’t find with every charcoal grill on the market. Because it can grill, roast, bake, and smoke due to the ability to handle “slow and low” and “hot and fast” cooking, you really won’t need another grill to do any other backyard cooking. The four dampers also give you an upper hand in controlling heat levels in your PK for extra grilling precision.

Let’s not forget that the Original PK Grill and Smoker is also easy to transport, as the body of the grill lifts right out of the cart and can be taken on tailgating, camping, and outdoor adventures. The rectangular build of the PK makes two-, and even three-zoned cooking a breeze. Many champion grillers boast about the efficiency and winning features of the Original PK Grill.