Tips on buying a good BBQ in Vallarta, Part I

Most people enjoy a perfect steak, fresh veggies, or set of ribs cooked on a grill. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that a lot of homes in Vallarta have a barbecue or grill. The key to getting good value is buying one that will both fit your needs and last in our climate.
Unfortunately, we are seeing too many cheap and poorly made barbecues flooding the market in Mexico right now. Buy one of these, and you are most likely to end up replacing it after one season. The salt from the ocean air and the humidity of our summers can cause rust and corrosion. This could also result in the barbecue being a health and safety hazard for you, your family, or your guests/renters.
When buying a barbecue or grill for your home in Vallarta, here are some tips to get you the best value for your pesos.
The first thing to consider is whether you want the traditional charcoal type or gas. If budget is a major factor, opt for a charcoal barbecue since they cost less than gas. Charcoal barbecues give your food a smoky flavor that you won’t get with a gas grill. The downside is that they take longer to get started, and you need to always keep a bag of charcoal bricks on hand.
Gas grills are available with either a propane tank or hose to connect to a gas line. Gas grills that are hooked up to a permanent gas line means you never have to worry about buying charcoal bricks or being out of propane halfway through cooking dinner.
Make sure to confirm your building or development has a gas line option in place before you purchase this type. Gas grills offer the convenience to get grilling immediately instead of waiting for the charcoal bricks to heat up. They also provide a more consistent temperature and so are better than charcoal for grilling.
Although not as popular, electric grills are also available here. These are portable and flameless and a good option if you do not have a balcony or terrace.
When checking out barbecues, compare the number of BTUs each model offers. BTU stands for British Thermal Unit, and it is the measurement that tells you the maximum amount of heat that all burners will generate in one hour. The average homeowner will do well to get a barbecue with a BTU of about 100 per square inch of grilling space. Keep in mind that the higher the BTU of the grill, the more energy it requires. That means you will pay more for gas or electricity.
In part 2 of this article we will cover some tests you can do at the store to make sure whether a BBQ is well-built. I will also share my recommendation for the best BBQ in the intermediate price range available in Mexico.
Are you looking for a barbecue for your home in Mexico? Contact me for more information at

Sheryl Novak
Sheryl Novak is an expat Canadian who has owned a home in Mexico for over ten years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico – the online furniture store for your home in Mexico and The Furniture Store by SOLutions Mexico, a brick and mortar show store in Bucerias. She is considered the expert on sourcing all styles of furniture for all sizes of budgets, in Mexico.