Traeger Pro vs Ironwood | 2022 | Pellet Grills Reviews and Ratings

Who doesn't like smoked chicken or grilled juicy steaks? The obsession with these particular food items doesn't fill the appetite enough to just order them at steakhouses. In western culture, it is a practice to own a grilling machine. And these days, it is not even a privilege to have one but almost a necessity. You will find it in almost every household. Currently, the competition is all about Traeger Pro vs Ironwood. Traeger is constantly raising the bar for quality grilling machines and smokers for over 30 years. Most other customers are fixated on pellet grills for all the right reasons.

Pellet grills use the age-old traditional techniques for ignition that is wood. Though, it is completely modernized and capable of cooking food in a variety of ways, including grilling, baking, and braising. On a pellet grill, you can prepare almost anything you can make in a regular oven.

Model

Our

rating

Cooking area

Max temperature,

ºF

Warranty


Traeger Ironwood 650

 

8.6

650

500

3Y

Traeger  Pro Series 22


8.4

572

450

3Y

Traeger Pro Series 34


8.4

884

450

3Y

Traeger Ironwood 885


8.6

885

500

3Y

Traeger Pro Series 575


8.9

575

450

3Y

Traeger Pro Series 780

8.6

780

450

3Y

Traeger Ironwood 650

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 650

Max Temperature, ºF: 500

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China

Traeger Pro Series 22

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 572

Max Temperature, ºF: 450

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China

Traeger Pro Series 34

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 884

Max Temperature, ºF: 450

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China

Traeger Ironwood 885

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 885

Max Temperature, ºF: 500

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China

Traeger Pro Series 575

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 575

Max Temperature, ºF: 450

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China

Traeger Pro Series 780

Cooking Area, sq. in.: 780

Max Temperature, ºF: 450

Warranty: 3 years

Made in: China


The Main Differences Between Ironwood and Pro

Overall, the Traeger Ironwood has more features than the Traeger Pro. Listed below are the main differences:

  • Max Temperature: The maximum temperature that can be programmed on the Ironwood is 50 degrees higher than the Traeger Pro and reaches 500 degrees. This is a relatively important difference which makes it easier to achieve crispy brown crusts on meat.
  • Ironwood is equipped with a Wi-Fire controller that allows you to control the process of cooking with a cell phone or Apple watch. Among the Pro models there are some that use the Digital Pro Controller, which does not provide this capability.
  • Ironwood uses Double Side-Wall Insulation, which reduces heat dissipation from the body of the grill and thus improves the stability of the maintained temperature during cooking especially in cold weather.
  • Ironwoods are equipped with a Traeger Downdraft Exhaust System that removes the old cold smoke, which improves the taste of cooked food and increases the penetration of smoke into the meat.
  • Unlike the Pro, the Ironwood features Super Smoke mode, which allows for a more intense smoky flavor.
  • Hopper capacity in Ironwood is 2 lb more.

Since the Pro series for wooden pellets came earlier, it earned much of its reputation because of its versatility. It broke the myth that grilling is only for skilled people because everybody can have it at home. Now it also comes with advanced electronics and Wi-Fi features. You may barely have to pay attention or touch the system while the grilling is going. Similar functions can also be seen in the Ironwood series of Traeger. If you had to decide amongst Traeger Pro vs Ironwood, size or dimensions are the prime defining features.

More grilling space is offered by the Ironwood models with a similar counterpart in the Pro series. Also, the hopper size is bigger for Ironwood.

Also, other features like double sidewall insulation, super smoke mode, low pellet sensor, and downdraft exhaust system are present in the Ironwood series. Read the detailed reviews for each of the models at the end of this article.

Wooden Pellet Grills Are User-Friendly

There are plenty of in-built features of pellet grills that make them the most reasonable grilling machines for households.

It's not like using an offset smoker or a standard charcoal grill where you have to keep a fire going. You merely press a few buttons and forget about it for few hours. If it is WI-FI-enabled, it will also send you reminders once the cooking is complete. You get the same irresistible smoky flavor that you had to bring with so much technique earlier.

The machines are also designed in a way that the flare-ups are minimized. The fire pot and cooking grates are sufficiently separated.

Once you've set the temperature, the pellet grill will maintain it and refuel automatically as per requirement. Heat control on pellet grills is quite accurate throughout the lowest to the maximum setting. The highest possible is 600F. With a little investment, you can purchase grill blankets to increase heat and smoke production.

Flavors from Wood Pellet Grill

While you will find many other grilling alternatives available, there is nothing like a pellet grill for preparing delicious meals. Fuel produces exquisite flavors to your food that tastes like wood-fire. This is what makes them better than gas and charcoal alternatives.

Pellets are made of wood from hickory, apple, mesquite, bourbon, etc., responsible for the distinction in flavors.

How Safe Are They?

Pellet grills are the easiest to handle as they are relatively safer than other types of grills.

After opening the grill's lead while it's on, several people complain about the intense flare-ups. It has the potential to cause serious injury or property damage. Charcoal or gas grills are generally the culprits in this situation. You may want to keep a fire extinguisher around for safety.

When it comes to pellet grills, the odds against such incidents are little to none. Even so, it may not be completely safe. Restarting the grill without first removing pellets from the previous cooking session can be risky. This can cause a very hot fire to erupt, or perhaps a tiny explosion that can lift the pellet grill lid.

Nutritional value, flavors, and toxic addition are determined by the fuel used in cooking. For wooden pellet grills, one has to be particular about the pellets used. Pellets are available in a variety of grades. You'll see that the pellets you are using have a food-safe tag on them. Some pellet varieties are available for home heaters. Those aren't ideal for pellet grills although being less expensive than food-safe pellets, using them in your pellet grill/smoker is not recommended due to the potential for health concerns.

Maintaining Your Pellet Grill

Cleaning your grill thoroughly will save you money on professional service or buying a new barbecue. Throughout the grilling season, you'll want to clean your grill deep at least twice. Also, it is ideal for performing regular pellet grill maintenance by cleaning it just after cooking. Putting off or delaying will make it more difficult to clean afterwards.

It all depends on how often you use your pellet grill. A thorough cleaning is recommended once a week for grill enthusiasts who like to BBQ every evening. If you only grill a few times a month, you don't need to frequent cleaning.

Things To Do Every 2–3 Weeks

  • Cleaning out the drip tray and burn pot may be required after using the grill 3-5 times, at least.
  • Either way, be sure to empty your BBQ's ash collection tray regularly.
  • Clean the pellet grill's smokestack to ensure optimal ventilation and heat.

Things To Do Every Time You Cook

  • Grill grates also need to be cleaned while the BBQ is hot so the dirt or grease easily scrapes off.
  • Scrubbing from the grates regularly is a good practice to clean off the grease.
  • Every time you grill, you should clean the grease drip bucket, grease drain tube, and the grill's exterior.

Season Your Grill

Seasoning must be done before first use. It removes any contaminants on the grills. It applies to any grilling machine that you opt to buy. Spray some cooking oil and fire up your grills to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep it for at least an hour on the same heat.

Ironwood vs Timberline

Traeger has been launching some of the finest models lately. But many people fell into a fix when they had to decide between the Ironwood and Timberline series. Both of the grills appear to be pretty identical upon the first appearance and even in functions.

They both offer Wi-Fire control systems and are driven by D2 Direct Drive, an exclusive feature of Traeger. Both the Ironwood and Timberline include double-wall insulation for more constant warmth in warm and cold weather equally.

There is only one distinct feature that makes all the difference. That is the size. Timberland is larger than Ironwood and weighs more. The cooking space offered by Ironwood is 650 sq inches, where Timberland offers 850 sq inches. Its hopper is also larger with a capacity of 24 lb, where Ironwood has a 20 lb hopper.

Furthermore, Timberline has additional extras such as a bamboo cutting board and a little front shelf. It naturally increases the price.

So if you are more comfortable with a smaller size and prioritize affordability, Ironwood will be as good a Timberline. But if you are looking for an enhanced grilling experience at home that can feed a larger crowd in one session, Timberline is worth the investment.

Difference Between Traeger Elite and Pro

Traeger achieved heightened success after the launch of these two popular series, the Pro and the Elite. Each of them has highly systemized designs that vouch for efficiency and durability. Both the series feature some of the best wood pellet grills in the market in the mid-range value. Though, the Elite is slightly more economical than the Pro series.

Both offer a temperature range of approximately 150 to 455 degrees Fahrenheit and a large cooking space depending on the sub-model.

Model Variation

Traeger's most selling grills include the Texas Elite, Lil' Tex Elite, and the Junior Elite. All of them are outfitted with the Elite controller.

In the Pro Series, there are Pro Series 22 and Pro Series 34 grills. The new Pro Series Grills, initially dubbed the 2016 Pro Series to distinguish them from previous Pro models. The new ones featured a redesigned controller and a sleek appearance.

Grill Component

The Pro series' barrel-shaped grill is mounted on a sawhorse chassis, including two all-terrain wheels. The unit's sawhorse chassis makes it more agile, and the wheels do not lock.

The Elite features a barrel-shaped grill with straight legs with two strong wheels and lockable casters.

Control Panel

An advanced Grilling Logic is available on the Pro Series Controller. While the control panel of the Elite has a simplistic look, it is pretty user-friendly.

Traeger Brisket

Due to its high-fat content, brisket is a great choice for grilling because the fat dissolves out and imparts flavor to the meat. Cooking them at the appropriate temperature for the right time, however, will produce the nicest texture. Traeger makes it very simple to do so.

Step 1: Preparation

Coat the trimmed briskets in a beef rub, preferably using the Traeger Beef Rub for better flavors. Wrap them in a plastic wrap once it has been seasoned. Place the wrapped brisket in the refrigerator for 12 to 24 hours.

Step 2: Preheat Process

Your Traeger grill should be preheated at 225°F for 15 minutes before cooking.

Step 3: Smoke Unwrapped

Take out the brisket from plastic wrap with the flat side down and set it directly onto your grill's grate. For best texture, slow cook it for six hours. If the internal temperature hits 160°F, that would also mean your briskets are ready.

Step 4: Wrap It

Double-wrap the brisket in foil after you remove it from the grill.

Step 5: Back To the Smoker

Placing it back on the grill, cook it until it reaches a final internal temperature of 204 degrees Fahrenheit. It will add 3 to 4 hours to the total time required.

Step 6: Let It Rest

Rest 30 minutes in foil after removing from the grill. Slice the meat against the grain to get the best slices.

Traeger Turkey

So Thanksgiving is around the corner and, you want to give it a shot to make your first turkey on a Traeger grill? That's a great assurance to enjoy time with your family to the fullest as Traeger pellet grill will take care of everything.

  1. Preheat the grill for 15 minutes at 300 degrees Fahrenheit, with the lid covered.
  2. Combine the slightly melted butter with chopped garlic, fresh herbs, and minced rosemary in a small bowl. Some salt and black pepper in the mixture would bring the flavours together.
  3. Prepare the turkey breast like it's done normally in the traditional technique. Make a pocket to fill in some of the butter-herb mixtures inside. The rest of the butter mixture should be spread over the entire breast of the turkey.
  4. Sprinkle the entire turkey with the same salt and black pepper you used in the filling. You can also use the Traditional Stuffing recipe to stuff the turkey's cavity for that delicious flavor you experienced in your childhood holidays. Step 5: Preheat to 300°F for 15 minutes with the lid covered.
  5. The turkey will cook in the preheated oven for at least 3 to 4 hours. 175°F is ideal for the thigh, and 160 F for the breast can go up to 165F. That is the final temperature before removing it from the grill.
  6. Serve after cooling it for 10-15 minutes.

Traeger Burgers

Burgers are the easiest and quickest to make on Traeger grills. Would you like to make a whole meal within 15 minutes? Follow these steps.

  1. Prepare the minced beef into patties. Get the ones that have high-fat content as it would help keep the patty intact and also juicy. Season them with the best mixture you have.
  2. Preheat the grill at 450F. The temperature settings for cooking would depend on how well done you want your patties to be. You can go for 375F. Your patties will have a balanced texture. It will be slightly smoky but not too juicy. For saving uptime, you can keep the temperature 420-450F. Though it won't smoke the entire patties, it will still have a mild flavor and keep the patties juicy.
  3. Add the patties, close the lid, and cook for 8 to 9 minutes, depending on the size of the patties. Don't forget to turn them halfway.
  4. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of the patty should read 160°F after 8 to 9 minutes.
  5. You can add cheese slices on top of them if you wish to and, heat for another minute and let it melt.

Now prepare the burgers adding veggies and sauce, just the way you like.

Reviews

Considering the most important criteria that every griller looks for in their machines, we have listed out the top Traeger pellet grills in the market and reviewed them for you. From going through the key points, you will get some clarity for Traeger Pro vs Ironwood.

Traeger Ironwood 650

With a cooking space of 650 square inches in the Ironwood line, you get a larger multifunctional grill than the pro series without the significant price increase that the Timberline series brings, even though the design is remarkably similar.

Features

It has all the features that we see are lacking in the Pro Series lineup like the Traeger Downdraft Exhaust System and Wi-FIRE. Including the hopper size, this holds slightly more than the Pro Series models.

The built quality is not something extraordinary. Standard stainless material is used that is sure to last long. The wheels are also thick and stable. It is spacious with a cart system.

When it's chilly out, double-sided insulation enhances temperature uniformity and pellet efficiency.

Lastly, it comes with a built-in pellet sensor that a dedicated Traeger app will help you control.

Cooking Convenience

You can manage it all using your smartphone app. It's a modern feature that many new grilling enthusiasts love. In regards to automation, Traeger goes over and beyond. You will also be able to operate it with your voice. The best part? It listens to Alexa.

On the cooking front, this grill may let you down slightly. Since popular food, such as steaks, are hard to cook on this grill. The dark, crusty outer layer with a rare medium is not achievable until the temperature is 700F. Traeger, on the other hand, does not go beyond 500F.

Clean-Up

The Ironwood 650 is easy to clean. You can empty the drip tray and wash it thoroughly. Brush the grill grates, and periodically separate the grates to clean the firebox carefully. You have to be extra careful during the rainy season.

 If water gets into the hopper, the wood pellets will convert to sawdust, which cannot be ignited. So remember to cover the grill once it's cooled down.

Traeger Pro Series 22

The Traeger Pro Series 22 brings back the vintage vibes by the first look because of the right-angle chimney topped with a cap. But it doesn't hinder the contemporary functionalities. The brass lid completes the elegant barrel shape structure. It is made for people who got unique tastes.

Features

The entire unit is composed of steel to keep it rust-free for years. It will also retain the heat. Due to their powder-coating rather than paint finish, Traeger grills last a long time.

It has a total cooking area spread across 572 square inches and a primary area of 418 square inches.

You won't have to worry about its stability, thanks to the sawhorse-style undercarriage.

When combined with the automatic auger and digital control, anyone can achieve and maintain a steady temperature to smoke, bake, or roast food. No need to fiddle and adjust repeatedly.

The unit comes with two meat probes which are great because, at this range, we can only expect a single one. Plugin the probe with the digital controller and the meat you are cooking. The temperature read-outs appear on the screen.

Cooking Convenience

You will be able to cook like an expert with the assistance of modern technology and automatic functions. Low and slow grilling is easy with the Traeger Pro Series 22 pellet grill because it eliminates too much stress.

Clean-Up

Clean your Traeger Pro Series 22 like you would do for any other grill. Don't let the tar-like substance from wood combined with moisture permanently destroy your grates.

Traeger Pro Series 34

Traeger Pro Series 34 is one of the best-selling pellet grills from Traeger's top-line originals. While you may not get a few desirable tech features, you can't deny its sturdy construction and dependable temperature controller. Plus, it is less expensive than the other similar grilling machines.

Features

The body is built of stainless steel powder coating that gives an elegant finishing yet scratch and rustproof. The legs are also hefty to provide more stability for all that weight it has to bore.

The size and cooking surface area are comparable to the TraegerIronwood 885 as the space allowed by this one is 884 sq inches, the largest you can get.

All the racks including, the grates, are porcelain-coated.

The hopper capacity is 18 pounds which we think is relatively low for the amount of cooking space it provides. Despite that, you can expect 20 hrs of cooking time.

In colder locations, the Digital Pro Controller and AGL work efficiently to maintain the heat. You may not realize the importance until it is winter.

Cooking Convenience

Like the other pellet grills of Traeger, this one also allows six types of cooking styles but again, you have to do it all at low temperature as the maximum it can reach is 450F. The grill isn't a great one for searing at high temperatures.

The most benefit you get from this grill is how you can cook a large meal in one session and, you don't have to set it up from the top gain.

Clean-Up

Cleaning is again relatively easy because all you have to do is wash the porcelain plates. The drip tray collects all the grease in the bucket, which you can easily dispose of. Maintaining the equipment will not eat away much of your time.

Traeger Ironwood 885

A large family with grilled food obsession would probably appreciate this model from Traeger. Allowing 885 sq inches of total cooking space, know that you won't get a larger size in the market. TraegerIronwood 885 is exactly like the Ironwood 650 model in terms of functionality but much bigger in size and spacious. And you get it all by paying only a few more bucks.

Features

Traeger uses a high-grade stainless steel body, plus the design makes it even sturdier. The chance of physical damage is minimal.

You don't need an extra table to place your tools while cooking. It comes with a stainless steel side shelf that has BBQ tool hooks.

Like its smaller version, this one also has a DR Direct Drive drivetrain, Wi-Fire technology, and double side-wall insulation.

The DC brushless motor guarantees long-lasting performance. Turbo Temp's fast start-up boosts grill efficiency and performance.

Having a fan with variable speed also gives the user more control over heat intensity.

Using a smartphone app and a plug-in temperature probe, you can monitor your meals  and make temperature adjustments from a distance.

Cooking Convenience

Traeger 885 is a versatile machine to pursue any cooking style. Yet, the temperature range of 165-500F only supports low and slow cooking. For the price we are paying, we did expect some degradation from Traeger.

Clean-Up

 Despite its size, cleaning is a breeze. Wash the grates to remove the accumulated grease. Also, you will need to empty the grease bucket once you are done for the day. Remove the residual ash from the pellets using a vacuum cleaner.

Traeger Pro Series 575

It is one of those Traeger's signature grills that won't fail to impress you with its sleek appearance. You can either go for an elegant copper brown color or take the classic black to cook in style. Apart from being eye candy, it features modern, hands-free features to take off that load.

Features

To prevent damage from long-term use, the grill grates have a porcelain coating.

The temperature range is 160-450F, which is an average range.

At least six people can have their meal with 575 square inches of cooking space on this midsize grill.

The Hopper capacity is the same as you would find in other models of Pro Series, which is 18 lb.

Simpler and better ignition and quick shut-down are among the many upgrades of the latest Traeger Pro series Lineup.

The temperature, smoke, and cooking time can be visualized and controlled through an app containing recipes and tips. You can experiment with them. It enables connection with Alexa.

Cooking Convenience

With the D2 powertrain, the grill heats up quickly. No more long hours of prep.

Because of the grill's construction and design, the heat is dispersed evenly. To ensure that each item is evenly heated, a fan rotates to distribute smoke inside the grill at a controlled speed. Make the best use of the WI-Fire Feature while cooking.

Voilà, you've got yourself a mouthwatering dinner that your friends will love.

It's not only a wonderful smoker and slow cooker, but it's also a dependable way to grill conventionally without burning meat, buns, fish, or veggie pie to a dark crisp.

Clean-Up

Handling the interior parts, such as the heating rods, should be done with care. They are prone to malfunctioning when in constant use.

The hopper cleanout system does bring some relief.

Traeger Pro Series 780

Essentially, the Traeger Pro Series 780 is a larger version of the Traeger Pro Series 575. These brothers were recently released in 2019 and are now in high demand. It is packed with the latest technologies, making it ideal for modern homes. This model, in particular, offers more space for those who are already fans of the Traeger Pro Series 575.

Here you will also get two color options, not missing out on the perfect jet black off course.

Features

Traeger's pro series is built to survive for years because of its durability. As a result of its robust four wheels, it can balance heavyweight. Though, it may not be true for the internal features, however.

The auger is powered by a brushless DC motor, a first in the industry, which provides exceptional power for flawless performance.

If you are also looking for Wi-Fire technology, D2 drivetrain, hopper cleanout, you may tick those boxes.

Using the variable fan speed, you can control the smoke level to just the precise level to give your luscious meat that exquisite smoky flavor. However, this function has a drawback in that the fan is not very sturdy. It might need a maintenance charge.

Cooking Convenience

In addition to TRU convection and dual-position grill grates, it has an integrated temperature probe. Unlike the common issue for unstable temperature or wrong display on the screen, you will not have that problem in this model.

Plus, you do not have to stand around for an hour till your meat is grilled. Just set and forget.

Clean-Up

The magnetic cleanout backdoor allows you to switch pellets on the slide swiftly for changing flavors.


You might also enjoy reading...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top