If you're looking to make the most of the summer weather and indulge in delicious grub surrounded by your nearest and dearest, a hybrid BBQ is a must-have.
It's the perfect way to make the most of the sunshine, enjoy longer evenings and good mood food, all with a refreshingly chilled drink in hand.
But which type of BBQ do you go for? A charcoal BBQ gives you those deliciously authentic smoky BBQ tastes, while a gas BBQ will get your burgers, hot dogs, and veggies cooked quicker and more efficiently.
Can't decide? You don't have to! Especially if you're to beat the masses and snap one up in time for the summer. According to Homebase, after it crunched seasonal sales data and analysed Google trends, it was revealed that Thursday 26 May is when you need to have made your choices on your summer BBQ purchases so you have your pick of the stock before they sell out.
A spokesperson from Homebase explained: “Thursday 26 May is when you need to have made your choice on what BBQ and what essentials you need for this summer. Based on our own data insights, in the last week of May, we expect demand to be up over 306%. That's across all BBQs, so both gas and charcoal BBQs. If you’re looking to buy a gas BBQ, we expect demand to be up 242% in that week and for charcoal BBQs we’re expecting demand to be more than 400% in the same time period.
“If you factor in Google Trends data it’s the same, with Thursday 26 May showing as the day when demand starts to rocket to more than 400% for BBQ search terms.”
We've rounded up the best hybrid BBQs that give you the best of both worlds, so you can dine al fresco and rule the garden as the BBQ King or Queen with your BBQ tools, no matter the occasion.
What is a hybrid BBQ?
A hybrid BBQ allows you to switch between gas and charcoal cooking and provides you with the best flexibility out of all the BBQs on the market.
It's super versatile, and you can even choose to cook using both gas and charcoal at once, great if you've got hungry mouths to feed but still want to take your time cooking succulent burgers with that traditional unique BBQ flavour.
Are hybrid BBQs any good?
Having grown in popularity in recent years, hybrid BBQs are great for offering that perfect mix between gas and charcoal cooking, reaping the benefits of both.
Gas BBQs are great for convenience and confidence, producing heat that can be controlled more easily and food that will be cooked more evenly. It's also more time-efficient as you can start cooking in minutes.
Meanwhile, charcoal BBQs are fantastic for creating an authentic BBQ taste and experience. While they're typically harder to get going, lighting a hybrid BBQ is easier as you simply need to turn on the gas burners and your charcoal will be ready to cook on. No need for paraffin cubes or chimney starters here!
With a hybrid, you could choose to pick whichever you prefer, or even start out on charcoal and switch to gas when time is of the essence, helping to cook your food quicker with that great BBQ flavour.
The best hybrid BBQs to buy in the UK
John Lewis & Partners Grillstream 4 Burner Hybrid Gas & Charcoal BBQ
Back in stock
One of the most popular hybrid BBQ's out there, the John Lewis & Partners Grillstream 4-burner is back in stock and it's selling quickly.
A couple of hundred pounds cheaper than JL's 6-burner hybrid BBQ (below on our list), this one still a premium option that can cook for up to eight people with the hybrid system allowing you to cook with charcoal alone for authentic, classic smoky-flavour barbecuing or with gas for better temperature control and instant, more convenient cooking.
It also has plenty of the same features such as a warming rack to keep food warm or for use as a secondary cooking area, the handy side shelves, sliding drawers, a chopping board, and underneath storage space.
Key features: Integrated Piezo ignition; Four stainless steel burners; Grillstream; Lid thermometer; LED backlit control knobs; Warming rack; Side shelf; Enclosed storage; Cast iron grills; Flame tamers; Drip tray; Four wheels.
Review: "Very Impressed. Buying online can sometimes disappoint as you can not visually get an idea of the product, but I cannot fault this, It took about an hour to put together with very easy to follow instructions and when you are putting it together you can see the excellent build quality. This is the best of both worlds the flavours of traditional BBQ and the speed of gas, especially with our British weather. This is a great investment and looks like it will last for years if you buy a decent cover. Highly recommend."
An ideal option for those who have less people to cook for but still want to have a hybrid, this 3-burner grill from Outback has been praised for improving the on-off switch and knobs on the front compared to the previous model.
The 3-burner Outback hybrid BBQ which is under £500 comes complete with a porcelain enamel costs roasting hood, heat gauge, two timber side tables, a warming rack and a new charcoal basket to enable dual fuel cooking option.
Two Timber Side Tables, Charcoal Basket, Warming Rack, Heat Gauge, Independent Ignition
Review: "Arrived on time. Bought to replace existing Outback BBQ which we were very pleased with and gave us many years of good service. Instructions for assembly could have been a bit clearer although better than some other assembly instructions. Reviewer and spouse in their 70s!!!"
A firm favourite out of the limited options available in the UK, this combination Char-Broil grill can convert from gas to charcoal and vice versa in just three steps and under 60 seconds! This hybrid also has a patented charcoal tray to ensure uniform cooking, fewer flare-ups, and juicier food.
This BBQ has enough space to cook for all your family and friends and comes with a handy side shelf for plating up and hosting all your cooking utensils. It really is all-in-one with a side-burner which we love, perfect for warming up sauces, making gravy, or preparing side dishes and vegetables quickly. Plus there's a warming rack too to keep everything nice and toasty off the primary heat.
Electric ignition; Stainless steel burners; Cast iron grates; Charcoal tray; Side burner; Temperature gauge; Side shelf; Warming rack; Cart wheels.
Dimensions: 62.5cm x 134.4cm x 120.7cm
Review: "Amazing BBQ, best we've ever owned. Really well made and sturdy. Coals light easily and there are no flare-ups when cooking. Well worth the money for stress-free BBQing. Would highly recommend."
CosmoGrill Barbecue DUO Gas Grill + Charcoal Smoker Portable BBQ
Best hybrid BBQ for large cookouts
This hybrid BBQ is a little different in its make-up from the previous one on our list - the Char-Broil is convertible between gas and charcoal, while the CosmoGrill has a dedication side for each. The gas grill has three stainless steel burners for even cooking and the charcoal smoker provides variable heat distribution, catering to the different cooking requirements for meat and veg at the very same time.
The CosmoGrill Barbecue DUO doesn't only look smart, but it also provides a large cooking area, boasting enough space to entertain up to 20 people with a banquet of tasty BBQ food. Like the Char-Broil, it comes with a side burner, warming rack, and thermometers to keep your cooking temperatures in control.
It is worth considering however that this BBQ doesn't come with a tray to empty coal ashes, so reviewers have found it a bit of a chore to clean.
Large cooking area (approx. 86cm x 84cm total); Cast iron grill grate; Three stainless steel burners; Side burner; Height adjustable coal tray; Two thermostats; Warming rack; Bottom shelf; Castor wheels.
Dimensions: 60cm x 164cm x 118cm
Review: "Absolutely love it. Not only does it cook perfectly, but it also looks class as well. I was impressed by the quality of the parts when I put it together and despite still being in winter, I’ve already used it 8-9 times. The only small part I find frustrating is that it’s not the easiest to clean out (the main charcoal bbq part is particularly awkward). This however hasn’t put me off."
Looking for a BBQ to go the distance and be able to withstand year after year of outdoor cooking? This is the one for you. With a PE-coated tough exterior, the Outback Meteor BBQ has been praised by reviewers for its sturdiness and longevity, with previous models having lasted over 10 years. Having said that, you should still make sure to equip it with a cover when in storage.
This BBQ has side tables for extra space and food prep, four individually controlled burners that give you the ability to regulate the temperature of the different areas of the grilling plates, and a hybrid cooking system charcoal basket. It’s also equipped with side burners, a warming rack and, most importantly, a bottle opener.
Integrated ignition; Four stainless steel burners; Cast iron grills; Hybrid cooking system charcoal basket; Four stainless steel flame tamers; Drip tray; Two side shelves; Side burner; Warming rack; Two wheels.
Dimensions: 128cm x 140cm x 61cm
Review: "Have used almost daily to cook: Roast chicken, steaks, kebabs, corn-on-the-cob, asparagus wrapped in pancetta all absolutely delicious. Bought a gazebo so have been grilling even when it's raining. It's very easy to get going and hot. Gets you outside and makes cooking fun."
Argos Home's Premium Dual Fuel Charcoal & Gas Combi BBQ lets you cook with both gas and charcoal in separate grilling spaces, meaning you can enjoy the ease and speed of cooking with gas, and if you've got time to spare, the flavour of cooking with charcoal.
We've given this best in show for design, not only because it looks chic with the matte black steel exterior, but because of all the added features included. Geared towards every BBQ enthusiast, this BBQ has thermostats on both hoods for temperature regulation, a storage shelf, wheels for portability around the garden, hooks for tea towels and utensils, and even a spice rack. It's all in the detail!
Only the regulator for propane gas is included, so if you'd prefer butane instead or have some leftover from an old gas grill, you'll need to buy a regulator separately.
Two stainless steel burners; Flame tamer; Drip tray; Two thermostats; Side shelf; Warming rack; Two wheels; Hooks; Spice rack.
Dimensions: 59cm x 116cm x 139cm
Review: "Very versatile and efficient for cooking all kinds of foods and lots of grill space for cooking for large quantities. Easy to clean." And another said, "Perfect BBQ for small or large gatherings. We couldn't decide whether to get gas or coal for years- this is the perfect solution. Worth mentioning - spare yourself a few hours to put it together!!"
John Lewis & Partners Grillstream 6 Burner Hybrid Gas & Charcoal BBQ
Best hybrid BBQ for BBQ enthusiasts
A premium, multi-function model, the John Lewis & Partners hybrid BBQ is perfect for those looking to go one step further and drift into the realms of professional barbecuing. This BBQ has it all.
There are six burners plus a warming rack to keep food warm or for use as a secondary cooking area. The dual hoods allow completely separate cooking temperatures with built-in thermometers to keep you in control, which you can adjust with the LED-backlit knobs.
This luxury BBQ has the Grillstream system built-in, which means all your barbecuing is virtually flare-free and fat is streamed away, basting the food as it goes for extra succulent and juicy meats.
Not only will this elevate your cooking, we particularly like the handy side shelves, sliding drawers, chopping board, ice bucket, and underneath storage space that'll elevate your BBQ experience, making it superior in ease and quality.
Integrated Piezo ignition; Six stainless steel burners; Grillstream; Two thermometers; LED backlit control knobs; Warming rack; Side shelf; Enclosed storage; Cast iron grills; Flame tamers; Drip tray; Four wheels.
Dimensions: 55.5cm x 115.2cm x 168.7cm
Review: "I must admit I had a bit of a panic when this first arrived and thought JL had delivered the wrong BBQ. The instruction manual didn't seem to match the online description and it wasn't clear this was a dual fuel BBQ that could cook with both gas and charcoal (which is why I chose it). But on closer inspection, one of the gas compartments includes a hybrid system that enables you to place charcoal briquettes on top of the gas lighters - very impressive. The charcoals were white within 10 minutes of lighting and I was able to use both gas and charcoal to cook my BBQ as I'd intended. The BBQ is well built and first impressions I'm very pleased with it."
Can you use any cooking charcoal or gas on a hybrid BBQ?
Yes, though it's worth checking the manufacturer's instruction manual in case they have any requirements or recommendations.
The BBQ brand Outback, for example, recommend that you use their Hybrid Charcoal Briquettes for their charcoal, and John Lewis recommends propane or patio gas cylinder bottles ranging in sizes from 3kg to 13kg for their gas.
For more advice on the best BBQ fuel for your grill read our in-depth guide.