One of the most critical shifts when honing your grill game is the addition of a great grill thermometer. This is because the best grillmasters know that meat is done when it reaches a specific temperature, not necessarily after it has cooked for a certain length of time. Pull that ribeye off the grill before it reaches an internal temperature of 120 degrees, and you’ll find it’s a bit too red — and possibly not even safe — for consumption. Wait until it’s blown past the 160-degree mark, and you may be chewing until it’s time for breakfast.
Fortunately, grill thermometer technology has taken significant strides over the past few years as the stability of wireless connectivity has increased and designs have become more compact and durable. We’ve been trying out some of the most technologically advanced offerings this summer, and they’ve made it easier to pull our food off the grill at just the right time.
Many thermometers claim they can read temps instantly, but the Thermapen One sets the standard for speed without sacrificing accuracy. Its ability to accurately gauge temperatures in just one second is especially useful for larger cuts of meat that require multiple readings and when you want to maintain steady grill temperatures by limiting how long the lid is open.The Thermapen One has an accuracy spec of ± 0.5 degree F (± 0.3 degree C), and every single one comes with an official calibration certificate from ThermoWorks’ Calibration Laboratory, which is accredited by the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA).
If James Bond found the occasion to get behind the grill, this is the thermometer he would use. At just 5.5 millimeters thick and 9.5 centimeters long, this fully wireless probe is the smallest meat thermometer on the market. While diminutive in size, the MiniX is anything but fragile as the ceramic handle can withstand temperatures up to 572 degrees F. It’s app-enabled and can stay in communication with your phone via Bluetooth for up to 33 feet when cooking on a grill with the lid open. However, the MiniX Charger base includes a built-in extender that increases your ability to move around and multitask by pushing the stick’s Bluetooth range up to 100 feet indoors and 260 feet outdoors.
Meater’s wireless pen-sized dual unit can measure air temps from one end and meat temp from the other simultaneously. The Meater mobile app is incredibly slick, and its ability to estimate the time remaining until meat reaches the desired temp was spot-on.The meat probe end can accurately deliver readings up to 212 degrees F, while the ambient temperature end can handle temps up to 527 degrees F. It’s also dishwasher-safe and has a battery life that allows them to monitor for 24 continuous hours of cooking time. Where the Meater+ probes start to flex is when they are paired with the Wi-Fi-enabled Meater Block, which beefs up monitoring capabilities thanks to a built-in Wi-Fi repeater that extends probe range over the entirety of your home network.
Thermoworks prides itself on the fact that Signals is one of the most accurate multiprobe setups available. But the included customization options set it a few notches above the competition, including six different types of Signals-compatible Pro-Series probes, including a fully waterproof design.The monitor and alarm system can be used as a standalone unit or via the mobile app via built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi so you can check it anywhere. It can also help adjust smoker temperatures automatically when paired with Thermoworks’ Billows temperature control fan.
With outdoor pizza cooking continuing to gain in popularity, an excellent infrared point-and-shoot thermometer is quickly becoming a must-have for backyard chefs. One of the factors that allows pizza ovens — and to a lesser extent, grills — to cook pizza so well is that they can heat pizza stones to a temperature high enough to cook crusts from below while the air temperature simultaneously cooks from above. As long as the oven is hot enough, that is. Ooni’s infrared thermometers can measure temps up to an astounding 1112 degrees F and can easily convert readings to Celsius with the simple push of a button. In addition to taking the guesswork out of when your stone is ready to start cooking, a built-in laser pointer gives a precise visual cue as to where you’re aiming.