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Z Grills vs Pit Boss (2021): Which Pellet Grill and Smoker Brand Is Better?

Pit Boss has been in the pellet grill and smoker business for years, building a solid reputation as a household name. It’s mostly geared towards budget-oriented home cooks who are looking for a decent price-to-performance ratio, but in that space, it has a formidable competitor: Z Grills. Having years of experience definitely makes the former stand out here, but that doesn’t automatically mean that the latter can’t hold a candle to it. 

In this Pit Boss vs Z Grills comparison, we’re taking a look at similar models that both brands have to offer. To be exact, we’re pitting the highly rated and similarly priced Z Grills 7002E against the Pit Boss 700FB, as well as the affordable Z Grills 450A and Pit Boss 440 Tailgater.

Z Grills vs Pit Boss Comparison Chart

ModelZ Grills 7002EZ Grills 450APit Boss 700FBPit Boss 440
 Amazon productAmazon productAmazon productAmazon product
PriceAmazon productAmazon productAmazon productAmazon product
Cooking Area694 sq in452 sq in700 sq in440 sq in
Hopper Capacity20 lbs15 lbs18 lbs5 lbs
Cooking GratePorcelain coated cast ironPorcelain coated cast ironPorcelain coated cast ironPorcelain coated cast iron
ControlsDigitalDigital, PID controllerDigitalDigital
Temperature Range180°F to 450°F 180°F to 450°F170°F to 600°F180°F to 550°F
Direct-Flame AccessNoNoYesYes
Dimensions (W x H x D)48″ x 51″ x 22″45″ x 49″ x 28″44″ x 44″ x 28″41″ x 40″ x 22.5″
Weight112 lbs84 lbs126 lbs92.5 lbs

Z Grills 7002E vs Pit Boss 700FB: Highly Rated Grills

The Pit Boss 700FB has the upper hand over the Z Grills 7002E with its direct flame access and wider temperature range.

Z Grills vs Pit Boss Z Grills 7002E vs Pit Boss 700FB Highly Rated Grills
A closer look at the 20-pound hopper of the Z Grills 7002E (left) and the porcelain coated cast iron grate of the Pit Boss 700FB (right).

To start things off, the Z Grills 7002E has a cooking area of 694 sq in and a hopper capacity of 20 lbs. It uses a porcelain coated cast iron for its cooking grate and a digital panel for its controls. Its temperature range goes from 180°F to 450°F.

Meanwhile, the Pit Boss 700FB has a larger cooking area of 700 sq in, but it has a smaller hopper capacity of 18 lbs. Similarly, it also uses digital controls and porcelain coated cast iron as its grill. As for temperature, it starts from 170°F and maxes out at 600°F, making it the better of the two at giving meat nice, dark sear marks. It goes a step further too, as it’s the only one with direct flame access. Thanks to that, it can reach up to 1,000°F for an even more intense sear.

Elsewhere, the two are pretty basic. In particular, neither one has Wi-Fi connectivity or PID controllers. However, they’re not exactly necessary.

Click here for our comparison between Z Grills and Traeger.

Z Grills 450A vs Pit Boss 440 Tailgater: Affordable Grills

While the Z Grills 450A has a PID controller, the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater levels the playing field with direct flame access.

Z Grills vs Pit Boss Z Grills 450a vs Pit Boss 440 Tailgater Affordable Grills
The primary features of the Z Grills 450A (left) and the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater (right) with its legs folded.

If grills like the Z Grills 7002E and the Pit Boss 700FB are out of your price range, then that’s where the Z Grills 450A and Pit Boss 440 Tailgater come in. Needless to say, these are relatively more affordable, but they don’t skimp on performance and features.

For one thing, the Z Grills 450A even has an advantage over the pricier 7002E—as well as the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater, for that matter—in that it has a PID controller. If nothing else, that makes it easier to maintain temperature, making adjustments on its own for more consistent cooking. Considering it’s a low-cost grill, it’s impressive to see that it has this feature. Besides that, it has a cooking area of 452 sq in, a 15-pound hopper, and a 180°F to 450°F temperature range.

On the other hand, the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater’s main selling point is its portability. Staying true to its name, it doesn’t just have a slim form factor but collapsible legs as well so it’s easy to bring along anywhere. The trade-off is it only has a small five-pound hopper and 440 sq in cooking area, but it does make up for it with a 180°F to 550°F temperature range and direct flame access to boot.

Other Factors

Both are similar in options, accessories, pellets, and resources, but Pit Boss is evidently more established than Z Grills.

Z Grills vs Pit Boss Other Factors
The Pit Boss 440 Tailgater (in photo) in action.

Pit Boss has plenty of other grills, including pellet and gas combos, griddles, vertical smokers, and portable variants, which are even more convenient to carry around than the 440 Tailgater. The same can’t be said about Z Grills since it primarily carries only wood pellet grills, but that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise because it’s newer in the scene.

When it comes to accessories, both have a wide variety, from all sorts of cooking tools like tongs and meat claws to aprons and covers. However, Pit Boss has upgrades such as hopper extensions, side smoker attachments, and modular shelves. 

The two are pretty much on par with each other in terms of pellets, offering an assortment of mixes. For instance, both have apple, hickory, and cherry blends, but Pit Boss has more options. That includes whiskey barrel, charcoal, and pitmaster blends, to name three.

Both brands also have plenty of recipes to help you get started on the right foot. But Pit Boss does one better than Z Grills by writing up a ton of cooking guides. That way you’d get the basics down pat and then some and be ready to take your grilling and smoking to the next level.


Pit Boss simply has more to offer than Z Grills.

Amazon product

In the cheaper range, Z Grills is arguably better. That’s evidenced by the Z Grills 450A with its PID controller and 15-pound hopper as compared to the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater, which in its defense does have direct flame access. But if money is hardly an object, the Pit Boss 700FB is hard to beat. After all, it has a wide temperature range and direct flame access, both of which come in handy for excellent sears. Sure, the Z Grills 7002E can still cook up a mean steak or burger, but it’s lacking in comparison.

Aside from that, Pit Boss has more accessories to choose from and ways to upgrade your grill and smoker. It even offers more wood pellet blends, other types of grills, recipes, and cooking guides, clearly showing who’s been in the business longer.


📌 Are Z Grills good?

Yes, the Z Grills 7002E and 450A are two popular wood pellet grills and smokers for a reason. They offer a lot of value for money, and they have reliable durability and cooking performance as well, with the latter even coming with a PID controller despite its low price point.

📌 Are Pit Boss grills any good?

Yes, Pit Boss is known for quality grills you can rely on. For instance, the Pit Boss 700FB is a highly rated model in part because of its wide temperature range and direct flame access, while the Pit Boss 440 Tailgater is a go-to pick for its portability.

📌 Which is the best Pit Boss grill?

The Pit Boss 700FB is arguably the brand’s best wood pellet grill because of its balance of price and performance. In short, it doesn’t break the bank and provides plenty of cooking area, wide temperature range, and durability you can depend on.

📌 Which is better, Z Grills or Pit Boss?

On the lower end of the spectrum, Z Grills has better and more feature-packed grills, but on the higher end, Pit Boss grills offer better cooking performance in general.

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Vincent Lanaria

Senior Editor, researcher and writer passionate about running, cooking, and how technology mixes with the two.