Last Updated On: June 30, 2021

Looking for a new grill but have no clue where to start? Both Traeger and Camp Chef have a reputation for being two of the best brands on the grill market.

While Traeger Grills took the world by storm, being the first to mass-market the pellet grill - the Camp Chef Brand has certainly made some big moves in the outdoor cooking world.

In this article, we’ll be combining all you need to know about Camp Chef VS Traeger, as well as a few unbiased product reviews to help you decide which one is best for you.

We’ve dug deep into both pellet grills, scouring the internet to ensure all the vital specs have been covered. So join us on this toe to toe battle as we find out which pellet grill truly comes out on top.

About Traeger Grills

Different kinds of Traeger grills

Joe Traeger, the developer of Traeger grills, produced his first grill in 1987 [1]. Back then, pellets were merely used as a way to heat homes.

That was until Traeger recognized the opportunity to do something much bigger.

The Oregon-based company quickly switched the use of pellets from stoves to grills, patenting their technology in 1988.

This allowed them to monopoly their newly supplied pellet grills, keeping them on top of the market as new challengers fought for the grilling crown.

When the patent for Traeger grills expired in 2006, this forced Traeger to expand their company, outsourcing their production to China in 2010.

By the time 2019 came around, Traeger had produced a new range of pellet grills with cutting-edge technology.

This, along with their user-friendly experience, allowed Traeger to remain one of the top dogs in the pellet grill market for over 30 years.

Related Article: Where Are Traeger Grills Manufactured?

About Camp Chef Grills

A Camp Chef brand grill

Unlike Traeger, Camp Chef dove right into making outdoor cookers - their first product being a very popular propane camp stove in 1990 [2].

Since then, Camp Chef has moved on to expand their line of outdoor cooking equipment, manufacturing smokers, flat-top grills, portable BBQs, and most recently, Camp Chef Pellet Grills.

Since Camp Chef started their journey into pellet grills much later than Traeger, they don’t have the array of grills their competitor houses.

However, their SmokePro and Woodwind ranges have gained them a lot of popularity due to the great value for money and quality build.

Calling Cache Valley, Utah their home, Camp Chef values customer service and expert advice above all.

Camp Chef vs Traeger: Pellet Grill Comparisons

Before we get into the pellet grill reviews, let’s delve deeper into the Traeger vs Camp Chef debate, comparing everything Camp Chef and Traeger have to offer.

1. Cooking Space

The grill cooking space of Traeger

Traeger offers six different cooking capacities, usually having two different sizes in each of their pellet grill series.

Camp Chef has three different cooking spaces to choose from 253, 429, or 663 square inches of cooking surface.

The portable pellet grills however, only feature the smallest grate, seemingly for portability purposes.

Verdict: Traeger 

Purely because Traeger offers six different distinct grill sizes, we’ll have to go with them. However, in this case, many people opt for Camp Chef once they consider the cost.

Purely because Traeger offers six different distinct grill sizes, we’ll have to go with them. However, in this case, many people opt for Camp Chef once they consider the cost.

2. Temperature Control

Temperature control/handle

Traeger has done a great job at creating pellet grills that have good temperature retention, just like Traeger Tailgater.

After reading quite a few reviews about various Traeger pellet grills, we found that the cooking temperature has never really been an issue.

The grill’s temperature can be controlled with a built-in LED interface. All you have to do is simply turn a knob to change the temperature by increments of 15 F.

What many seemingly love the most is that the modern-day pellet grills allow you to manage the temperature right from your phone.

This means you can go ahead and let your Traeger grill do its thing while you watch the game inside - monitoring everything right from your phone or tablet.

Camp Chef Pellet Grills are rather similar to Traeger in the sense they do a great job of retaining heat. Generally, these pellet grills will spread the heat across the grill evenly and ensure a solid cook.

The Camp Chef grill also features a LED display monitor and is controlled by a simple knob that allows you to manage the temperature.

The included meat probe can be monitored using the LED display.

Verdict: Traeger

While both brands do a fantastic job with temperature control, we have to give it to Traeger purely for its handy phone app.

The fact that you can fire up and manage your grill without actually being there just gives it the ultimate edge.

3. Temperature Range

An opened Traeger grill

Traeger Pellet Grills usually offer a temperature range of about 180 F - 400 F, with a very straightforward temperature control unit.

Camp Chef Grills have a temperature range of 160 F - 500 F. Plus, many of these models also offer direct flame cooking.

Verdict: Camp Chef

To put it simply, there’s just more you can do with a Camp Chef pellet grill thanks to its wider range in temperature.

4. Pellet Hopper Capacity

Close up image of pellets

Traeger Grills have a pellet hopper size of 18 pounds -  they don’t offer a smaller or larger capacity.

Camp Chef Grills have a smaller unit, with a hopper size of 18 pounds, and a larger one with 22 pounds of capacity.

Verdict: Camp Chef

While 4 pounds may not seem like much of a difference, it makes all the difference for a bigger grill. Therefore, Camp Chef has the edge here.

5. Extra Features

A small chimney of Traeger gril

When looking at extra features, we’re really searching for bits and bobs that take our outdoor cooking needs and times it by 10.

Think of a cooking rack, meat probe, warming rack, and other add ons that offer grill technology.

Traeger is known for its handy phone app, and Camp Chef offers extra side burners with griddle attachments.

It’s rather difficult to come up with a winner for this one since with the Traeger vs Camp Chef debate in this category; it’s a lot about preference.

Verdict: Camp Chef

These days, Camp Chef has been stepping up its game when it comes to extra features.

6. Price

Different price tags

Buying a pellet grill isn’t exactly inexpensive and should be seen as an investment.

While the price of these outdoor stoves should be considered, what you’re getting for your money is much more important.

All in all, Camp Chef models generally offer much more bang for their buck when compared to Traeger models.

Verdict: Camp Chef

With Camp Chef, you’ll get a great pellet grill for a great price.

Which One is Our Favorite?

Picking a winner between both of these fantastic grills is very hard. Camp Chef and Traeger both offer a great backyard cooking experience.

But, since I have to choose, I’d go with Camp Chef as the overall winner in this Camp Chef vs Traeger debate.

That doesn’t make Traeger any less worth, of course. If you end up buying one, I’m sure you’ll love it.

However, when you weigh up all the features, add ons, and grilling space, Camp Chef takes the cake.

Camp Chef VS Traeger Pellet Grill Reviews

While we made our mind up, that doesn’t mean you have to agree!

Take a look at these 3 different categories; budget options, mid-range, and top of the line, to decide which brand is truly for you.

Budget Options

Camp Chef XT 24 Pellet Grill

A Camp Chef XT 24 Pellet Grill brand

If you’re seeking a grill to bring simplicity back to your outdoor cook, the Camp Chef Smokepro XT may be the answer to your prayers.

This particular pellet grill comes with Gen 2 features like PID technology, allowing you to hold a super tight cook.

The Camp Chef Smokepro allows you to set your smoke control between 1 and 10, giving you a custom, smokey taste.

The cooking chamber also gives you quite an impressive range - 160 F - 500 F - despite the affordable price.

To save yourself time for your next cook, the camp chef smokepro features a patented Ash-Cleanout system.

Specifications:

  • Cooking Area: 570 square inches of cooking
  • Pellet Hopper Capacity: 18 lbs
  • Grill Temperature: 160 F - 500 F
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $585
Pros
  • Included stainless steel meat probes
  • Affordable price
  • Creates a nice smoke ring
Cons
  • Experiences temperature swings
  • Pellets don't fall in the auger

Traeger Pro 575 WiFIRE

A Traeger Pro 575 WiFIRE grill

The Traeger Pro 575 is the most popular and best-selling grill in the Traeger range. This grill gives you plenty of space, enough to cook up 4 chickens at once.

The WiFIRE feature includes wifi technology that allows you to connect your grill to their patented Trager Companion App - controlling and monitoring your grill while you watch the game inside.

The impressive thing about the Traeger Pro 575 is the way it controls the temperature.

The RTD probe measures the pellet smoker every second to maintain the temperature, even within 15 degrees.

The D2 direct drive technology also has your pellet smoker up and running super quickly, allowing you to begin your cook at turbo speed.

Concerning efficiency, this particular grill will go through about 2lbs of wood pellets per hour when grilling on high heat.

Specifications:

  • Cooking Area: 575 square inches of cooking
  • Hopper Capacity: 18 lbs
  • Temperature: 180 F - 450 F
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $799.99
Pros
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Great build and quality
  • Handy wifi monitoring app
  • Dual LED temperature readout
Cons
  • Unable to sear due to low-temperature range
  • Hard to wheel across uneven surfaces
  • Pricey compared to most propane and gas grills

Mid-Range Options

Camp Chef Woodwind Wifi 24 With Sear Box

A Camp Chef Woodwind grill with Sear Box

The Camp Chef Woodwind Wifi 24 is a great option for anyone wanting to grill, smoke, roast, bake, and now - sear to your heart’s content.

While this wood pellet grill reaches temperatures from 160 F - 500 F, the included propane sear box allows you to achieve temperatures up to a whopping 900 F.

We love that this particular model offers the most features Camp Chef has to give.

Equipped with an all-new PID and Wifi Slide and Grill Technology controller, you’re able to set timers, change temperatures, and tailor your cooking process right on the Camp Chef Connect App.

When you’ve finished using your BBQ sear box and cast iron searing grate, clean-up is a breeze with their patented Ash Cleanout System.

Specifications:

  • Cooking Area: 811 square inches of cooking
  • Hopper Capacity: 22 lbs
  • Temperature Range: 160 F - 500 F (900 F with the BBQ sear box)
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $1,300
Pros
  • Impressive temperature range
  • Ability to smoke and sear
  • Separate sear box
  • Easy to clean
  • Great build quality
Cons
  • The wifi app and connectivity needs improvement

Traeger Ironwood 650

A Traeger Ironwood 650 brand

Taking previous criticism into consideration, Traeger stepped up their innovation with their brand new models in the Ironwood collection.

The Traeger Ironwood 650 uses robust, heavy-duty steel to create a sturdy cooking base.

This grill also features a 20 lbs hopper, accommodating more hardwood pellets for a longer smoke with their Smart Smoke Technology.

Traeger’s handy cleanout feature also means you can easily remove any leftover pellets to avoid any jams in your auger.

Traeger Ironwood 650 is equipped with their patented WiFire app, allowing you to control and monitor your cook right from your phone. Plus, it is also Alexa compatible.

Among the pellet grill product lines, Traeger has included a Downdraft Exhaust system, which creates a much more efficient burn, while distributing the fire evenly.

Specifications: 

  • Cooking Area: 650 square inches of cooking
  • Hopper Pellet Capacity: 20 lbs
  • Temperature: 160 F - 500 F
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $1,199.99
Pros
  • WiFire app for wireless monitoring
  • Downdraft system for even heat distribution
  • Cleanout system on the 20 lbs hopper
  • Consistent temperature
Cons
  • Wheels are a little too small
  • Single side table is too small
  • Unable to sear due to low temperatures

Top Of The Line Options

Camp Chef Woodwind Wifi 36 With Sidekick

A Camp Chef Woodwind 36 grill with sidekick

These days, pellet grills claim they can do everything; grilling, smoking, baking, roasting, braising - everything except sear.

I know I’m not alone when I say I love a good sear on my steak.

Sure, searing is possible if you can get your grill to 500 F, however, grilling over indirect heat just won't give you the same flavor nor effect.

Camp Chef’s Woodwind Wifi 36 fixes this problem with one simple solution - open flame grilling.

Plus, on the Camp Chef Woodwind, you get lots of cooking space for even the biggest cuts, split up on two cooking racks. You can monitor your cook right from a handy phone app.

The Woodwind also features Camp Chef’s slide and grill technology, which lets you quickly swap from smoking to flame grilling.

The Woodwind 36 also comes with a detachable attachment called the ‘sidekick.’ You can connect accessories such as a pizza oven, sear box, or griddle. This lets you bake, boil, braise, saute, and much more.

Specifications:

  • Cooking Area: 1236 square inches of cooking
  • Hopper Capacity: 22 lbs
  • Temperature: 160 F - 500 F (650 F with direct flames)
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $1,600
Pros
  • Includes 4 meat probes
  • Features a direct flame
  • Large, full-color digital display
Cons
  • As the grill is over 5 ft, it isn’t very convenient if you have little space
  • Wifi app and connectivity needs improvement

Traeger Pro Series 780

A Traeger Timberline 850 grill

The Traeger Pro Series 780  is on the bigger side of the Traeger line, paired with a lot of new and handy features.

This includes their D2 auger drive system, which carefully controls the flow of pellets, ensuring your auger never gets clogged or jammed.

The hopper can hold up to 18 pounds, meaning you won't have to fill it during long smoking sessions constantly.

Pro Series 780 grills also come equipped with Traeger's WiFire app, allowing you to control and monitor your primary cooking chamber right from your phone or tablet.

The double-walled construction of this specific grill means heat is retained well, and the three cast iron steel grill grates give you an impressive amount of cooking surface area.

Specifications: 

  • Cooking Area: 780 square inches of cooking
  • Hopper Pellet Capacity: 18 lbs
  • Temperature: 160 F - 500 F
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $999.99
Pros
  • Double insulated smoking chamber
  • WiFire monitoring and control app
  • Three separate racks
  • Easy to clean
Cons
  • On the more expensive side
  • Heavier to move around compared to portable pellet grills

The Bottom Line: Camp Chef or Traeger?

Both Camp Chef and Traeger are fantastic camping grills, however, in our eyes, Camp Chef comes out on top due to their value for money and wide range of options for cooking surface area and temperature.

At the end of the day, it all depends on preference and how you like your cook. If you need seering in your life, Camp Chef is the one for you. On the other hand, If you love convenience and technology, Traeger may be right up your alley.

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