Plenty of beginners don’t realize that, outside of Big Green Egg, there are also other brands that manufacture kamado grills, like Kamado Joe for example.
Of course it is BGE that’s been the most recognizable brand in years, responsible for creation of the first kamado. Over the years, however, a lot of valuable brands have been created, including one of the most popular ones, Kamado Joe.
When looking for a ceramic grill, you are bound to run into both brands, which of them to choose? You will find out after reading the entire article in which we are going to compare Kamado Joe and Big Green Egg.
Kamado Joe and Big Green Egg are currently the two most popular brands specializing in manufacturing kamado grills. We’ve decided to compare the best lines of both brands so that you can get a full picture of what sets both manufacturers apart.
Big Green Egg has dominated the market while being its leader for a few decades, but in recent years a worthy opponent appeared, which is Kamado Joe.
I have to admit right here that both options are great and when it comes to the flavor of food prepared with these grills, there is no difference. No matter which grill you buy, you will be 100% satisfied but if you do have your options, and most importantly are planning to spend a lot of money, it would be better if it was the best investment possible.
Kamado Joe vs Big Green Egg – Face to Face Comparison
As I have already mentioned, both grills are great but when deciding to pick one of them, you have to pay attention not only to the performance but also many other aspects such as the price, innovative features, available accessories or the brand’s approach to the customer.
For the purposes of a honest and fair comparison, we picked Big Green Egg Large and Kamado Joe Classic III, below you will find out the results of our work.
At first glance, there is no significant difference, but it is Kamado Joe that contains more basic accessories such as a stand for example, which in Big Green Egg has to be bought separately.
The ratio of price to what you get is still fairly similar but in terms of price and what you get for it, Kamado Joe is the winner.
Brand’s history and reputation
Everyone who’s ever come across grilling knows Big Green Egg. It is a brand so important that some people believe that it is actually the only manufacturer that specializes in ceramic grills. In practice it is obviously different, but it shows how strongly Big Green Egg is recognized on the market.
For about 40 years now, they have been making ceramic grills, being the leader in the industry all that time, so in terms of brand recognition Big Green Egg totally wins.
Kamado Joe is a brand that was only founded in 2009, which means it’s only been one decade. Compared to Big Green Egg, there’s nothing to talk about and nothing to compare in terms of history.
It is Big Green Egg that’s responsible for promoting ceramic grills in the USA.
Kamado Joe, on the other hand, has successfully entered the market, trying to give the customer something more. It’s not just about the quality and price, but also functionality and innovative solutions. In these regards, Big Green Egg has been long left behind, which the Kamado Joe company has taken a perfect advantage of.
The red kamado, despite being on the market for a little more than 10 years, has already made a lot of noise and is recognized as a worthy opponent to Big Green Egg.
Both grills are very well built and in good hands can survive a lot. When it comes to the body itself, we haven’t noticed a significant difference, in both cases the ceramics are thick and durable enough.
There’s a difference, on the other hand, in everything else around the ceramic body.
Kamado Joe is much better at designing and building a grill as a whole, which can be seen in the finishings of individual elements. For example, the stand in Kamado Joe is welded, whereas in BGE it is screwed together, which is a sign of poorer durability.
Big Green Egg has a standard gasket which for this kind of money isn’t the best news. Kamado Joe, on the other hand, comes with a Wire Mesh Fiberglass Gasket, which is something to be expected from a grill for this kind of money.
Big Green Egg requires buying a lot of accessories separately in order to be able to start cooking fully comfortably. Kamado Joe is sold with a set of all the essential accessories (stand, wheels, ash cleaning tool or folding side shelves).
When it comes to BGE, you have to pretty much buy everything separately which makes the final price for a grill possibly much higher than for Kamado Joe.
On top of that, it is Kamado Joe that offers more of interesting and better developed accessories.
Big Green Egg doesn’t come with anything innovative expect for the ash removal system.
In terms of innovativeness, Kamado Joe is definitely the winner which is what made it a great competitor to BGE.
For example, Kamado Joe Classic III has an air lift hinge that makes it possible to lift the lid using just one finger, same with closing. Everyone knows how heavy ceramics are, which is why without this kind of mechanism it is easy to damage or open the lid when someone doesn’t have enough strength.
Other interesting solutions are the aluminum chimney cap, JoeTisserie or Divide & Conquer cooking system ( grill grates ).
The warranty is a pretty complicated topic because it doesn’t cover the entire grill but different elements individually. This means that, for example, the ceramics have a limited lifetime warranty, whereas other elements only 3 or 5 years of warranty.
I recommend checking the details on the official websites of BGE and Kamado Joe.
Big Green Egg is not sold online, you have to find a dealer in your neighborhood that offers this exact grill.
When it comes to Kamado Joe, you can order it online and be sure that it will reach you intact. We’ve had an opportunity to take a closer look at how a Kamado Joe Classic II is shipped and we have to admit that the shipment really is adequately prepared.
The grill arrives on a palette, packed in a large cardboard box that is characterized by a much better durability than regular cardboard.
Both brands offer great kamado grills, one cannot deny Big Green Egg’s great history, but it’s not something to rely on forever. History clearly shows that even the best products have to be perfected using new technologies.
If that is not the case, a competition will show up soon that will successfully take advantage of this weakness. That’s exactly what the Kamado Joe brand has done, creating a grill as great as those from BGE, while offering better quality of workmanship and functionality.
After all these years one can only say it again that both grills are great and you won’t be disappointed with them. If we start taking a closer look, however, at the price and what you get for the same or a similar price, it is clear that in this regard Kamado Joe gets an advantage.
The performance and quality of workmanship on their own are not everything, what also matters is the comfort of cooking as well as innovative solutions and gadgets.