Char-griller Akorn Vs. Kamado Joe Vs. Primo Grills

Char-griller Akorn Vs. Kamado Joe Vs. Primo Grills

This post compares three great grills- Char-griller Akorn, Kamado Joe Classic II, and Primo Grills. It got interesting to compare different grills, and these three are more than interesting to compare.

Here, we will see which grill is the best for cooking by looking at their features and what they can do to help you. These are grills known to perform very well.

Kamado grills are more versatile and powerful than the grills that we see. They produce a lot of heat, and they can retain that heat for a long time.

Kamado grills can grill and smoke meat, which is perfect during this cold weather or summer cookouts.

So while we take a look at how well each of these Kamado grills performs compared to one another, read on so you can decide which of these great grills you will be getting in the future.


How Do You Assemble Them?

Kamado grills are heavy because of their ceramic parts. However, some are lighter, depending on the manufacturing materials.

The Kamado Joe grills and Primo grills usually come assembled, while the Char-griller Akorn is the one that needs assembling.

Kamado Joe Classic II
Kamado Joe Classic II

You might consider when setting up the Primo and Kamado Joe grills after you move them to their desired space. They weigh over two hundred pounds, depending on the model, that is.

My advice when you want to transfer the Kamado Joe and Primo grills is to disassemble them first. For example, you can remove the firebox inside and then transfer that part one by one.

Assembling them is easy, and you should not have to worry about that.

As for the Char-griller Akorn Kamado, the guide included is very easy to follow. The parts are marked well, so I knew exactly what goes into a particular space.


Char Akorn Grill

This grill does weigh 100 pounds, but you will hardly feel the weight when assembling the smaller parts. From there, you can then find the place to set the grills up.


Where Can I Use The Grills?

The first thing that you should know is that these Kamado grills are very powerful.

Of course, you can put them indoors when the weather is bad outside but never use them inside the house. They are also large, so you are going to need a huge space for setting them up.

When moving the Kamado grills, make sure to ask for some help to prevent accidents. These are very heavy, and you also need a very strong table to set them upon or get their stands.

The companies sell the stands on most of their models that come with wheels. It is also worth noting that they offer tables or setup areas where the Kamado grills will fit perfectly.

Aside from that, you can also ask the company to come and set it up for you. You can make space in your outdoor kitchen for the company to set the grills up to get the grills’ full warranty.


How Hot Can They Get?

These Kamado grills can get hot, but they are also safe to use provided placed in an area far from flammable materials.

For the Kamado Joe, most of their models come with great heat insulation. With that, their grills usually get up to 750 degrees Fahrenheit, which is very impressive for the large grills.

Primo grills are no different from the Kamado Joe as they almost have the same build and materials used. However, these grills are more towards the low and slow cooking.

That means that they have better control and cooking capabilities with lower temperatures. Primo grills’ maximum heat is at 500 degrees Fahrenheit and can go as low as 250.

Char-griller Akorn is a small Kamado grill that does not have the same earthly material for insulation. Instead, it uses double-walled stainless steel to retain the heat inside it.

Despite this, the Char-griller Akorn can still get up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit. So the clear winner when it comes to producing heat is the Kamado Joe grills with 50 degrees difference.


How Much Food Can You Cook On The Grills?

Size matters when it comes to Grilling, especially with Kamado grills. Despite having decent sizes, these grills have different cooking areas for making as much food as you want.

The Char-griller Akorn is a small Kamado grill with the big model coming in with around 300 square inches of cooking space. That is enough for a whole chicken or a slab of meat.


Char Akorn Grill

That is great for a meal for the family or a small group of people, but if you want to go with more food, you should go with either the Primo grills or the Kamado Joe grills.

The Primo grills have an oval shape; this is a unique design as most Kamado grills, including the Char-griller Akorn and the Kamado Joe grills, have circular shapes.

However, the oval shape of the Primo grills enhances the cooking space. It allows you to put larger and longer pieces of food on it and can even cook other foods at different temperatures.

The Kamado Joe grills, on the other hand, have a special feature called Divide & Conquer; this is where the grill, aside from its large main cooking area, can be expanded with grill racks.

You can get up to 3 sets of racks depending on the model and cook multiple foods at a time. The racks have different levels, which is great for cooking at different temperatures.


How Do You Control The Temperature Of The Grills?

This feature is one of the few similarities between the three grills. Since they all use charcoal for producing heat, they are all controlled manually when you want to change the temperature.

These grills all have two dampers each. One at the bottom usually comes in a stainless steel compartment that also catches the ashes from the firebox inside the Kamado grills.

The other vent found on the grill’s lid, which is exhaust, or some sort of a chimney. These two vents are the controls for the temperature by allowing proper airflow inside.

When you want to change the temperature and make it go higher, you can use the bottom damper by opening it and allowing air inside. The same goes for the top vent on the lid.

The bottom damper is for changing the temperature at higher increments and the top vent for lower ones. This feature comes with all of the three grills, and they are very easy to use.


How Hot Can The Outer Parts Get?

It is all about insulation, which is a very crucial part of cooking in a Kamado grill. The better the insulation in the grill, the less likely it will lose heat to its surroundings.

The Kamado Joe and Primo grills have ceramic as their primary raw material, which is such a great insulator.
These grills have double-wall insulation, which means that no matter how hot these Kamado grills’ interior can get, the outer parts will always be safe to touch.
That is a different story when it comes to the Char-griller Akorn.

Some users doubted the Char-griller Akorn to retain heat since it is made with stainless steel. However, it does have the ability to retain as much heat as the other grills.

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Despite that, this grill is still hot even on the outer parts. Get this, the heat is constant inside the Char-griller Akorn, but it does transfer through the stainless steel to the outer shell.

That means that you cannot simply touch the Char-griller Akorn with no safety gloves on. Despite the air between the two walls of stainless steel, the heat still travels pretty well.


How Heavy Are The Lids?

Kamado Grills are heavy, and the lid of these grills are no different. For ceramic grills such as the Primo and the Kamado Joe, the lids are very heavy compared to the Char-griller Akorn.

For the Char-griller Akorn, you do not have to worry about the lid as it does not weigh that much. You can easily lift it with one hand and continue cooking with the other.

Kamado Joe Classic II

However, with the Primo grill, the company needed something to help the users lift the heavy lid. That is why the hinge at the back of the lid is spring-loaded, which helps pull the lid up.

That is good enough, but the people at Kamado Joe thought it could be better. That is why their grills’ lid has the Air-lift Hinge, which helps lift the heavy lid easily.


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This feature essentially removes about 95% of the lid’s weight. With this, I was able to lift the lid of the largest Kamado Joe grill with one hand, or even one finger with not much effort exerted.

So with these grills, there is not much need to worry about the weight of their lids. You can easily and safely lift them and check the food or continue cooking with the lid open.


How Well Do They Cook?

There was not a lot of difference between the food that I cooked in the grills. However, the Primo grill did have a better or a much smokier taste on the meat when smoking.

The divider of the firebox allowed the smoke to get to the food without using too much heat. Both the Kamado Joe and the Char-griller Akorn grills were able to do this at a lower rate.

Meaning they were able to smoke meat but not as well as the Primo grills. The oval shape of the Primo grill’s cooking area made a difference as it allowed the smoke to roll over the food.


How Do You Clean Them?

You do not need to clean these Kamado grills as they will inevitably gather soot from the charcoal. You can remove the ashes easily as they all have an ash-catcher at the bottom.

I find it best to clean the firebox by using a shop-vac to collect the remaining ashes. Just wipe the shells or the outer parts of the Kamado grills, and you are good to go.

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You can clean the grill grates and firebox plates with water since they are either porcelain-coated steel or cast-iron surfaces, all of which are safe with water.

These Kamado grills usually have their covers sold by their respective manufacturers. So if you want to leave them outdoors, I recommend getting the covers and putting them on when they are not in use.



Kamado grills are a bit tricky to use if you are new to Grilling. However, these three have the easiest controls and features, so there is no doubt that you can learn cooking in them.

Kamado Joe, Primo, and Char-griller Akorn have the best materials. They are powerful and versatile, which means that you can use them with almost any food you want to cook.

Among all the three, Primo Grills had better tasting ribs than the Char-Griller and then the Kamado Joe.The ease of use and temperature control was better with Joe, and then the Primo and Char-Griller.

If if the taste of the food is all that matters, then you know which one to choose from the three.

So start making the best-smoked meats, seared steaks, and barbecue in your backyard with these three amazing Kamado grills!


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