Traeger Junior Elite Pellet Grill Review

9.0
9.0 score
[Editors rating (9.3) + Users rating (8.0)] / 2 = Janes Kitchen Miracles score (9.0)/10


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Editor rating: 9.3 / 10
User's rating: based on 1 user ratings
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Pros

Temperature stays constant

Great for slow cooking

Convection blower installed

Easy to assemble

Cons

Amateur cooks may have a few difficulties learning how to cook with it at first

Traeger Junior Elite Pellet Grill Review

The Traeger company is known as one of the pioneers in the pellet smoking and grilling industry. The company has grown into one of the most popular and trustworthy brands on the market ever since opening their doors in the 1990s, and when people hear the word Traeger, they think of quality, durability and dependability. Their grills were originally only offered in limited quantities to select regional areas, but as word spread about their products, the company ramped up production to meet consumer demands.

The Junior Elite is Traeger's upgraded version of their compact Junior Pellet Smoker; the company added a few new features like a digital temperature control module to maintain the temperature inside of the unit's cooking chamber. The unit is geared towards professional and amateur home chefs alike, and its size makes it perfect for people who don't want to deal with an immobile and bulky grill.

Digitally controlled pellets keep the unit's temperature at a consistent level; users never have to worry about temperature fluctuations due to cold weather, wind, rain or snow. Pellet grills allow users to set the temperature of their grill, and they can leave knowing that it will never fluctuate. The digitally controlled thermometer automatically releases pellets when the temperature needs to be adjusted. You can literally set the grill up at night and find it at the same temperature when you wake up in the morning; this allows you to slow cook or smoke savory pieces of meat without any hassle.

Features

Digital thermostat controls
Ample 15” x 20” cooking area; 292 square inches of cooking space
Convection blower to make sure all food is cooked evenly
Easy drain cleanup system
Auger to feed pellets into the firebox
Steel construction for durability
Porcelain coated grill grate
Versatility; the unit can be used for smoking, grilling, baking, and roasting

What We Like

The digital thermostat on the Traeger Junior Elite allows users to grill and smoke their meat without attending to it regularly; when you know that the unit's temperature is precise, you don't have to check on it every couple of minutes to make sure that it isn't burning or under-cooking your meat. When you set the temperature, the unit controls the pellets and airflow automatically to make sure that the temperature stays constant.

There's nothing worse than a grill that has hot and cold spots; when this happens, you never know if your meat is grilling properly. The manufacturers of the Traeger Junior Elite solved this problem by installing a convection blower inside of the unit's cooking chamber.



When the blower turns on, it circulates hot air throughout the cooking chamber, so you always know that your food is being cooked at a consistent temperature; it doesn't matter where you place your food on the grate. You can choose to use direct or indirect heat when cooking your food, and the convection blower always maintains a steady temperature.

The Traeger Junior Elite can be started with the push of a button; there is no lighter fluid, fire or gas involved. The electric ignition gets the grill going quickly; all you have to do it set the temperature and make sure that the grill has enough pellets in its hopper.

When you add your food, most of the grease and drippings are caught in the unit's grease drain system, so you don't have to spend much time cleaning it after you use it.

The Traeger is very easy to put together. When you first receive the grill, you get the main unit, some bolts, the unit's legs and the burner/feeder. You use three bolts in each leg, and you use four bolts to attach the burner/feeder. The instructions are very easy to follow, and you can easily get the unit assembled in under an hour; most people manage to do it in just a couple of minutes.

The Traeger Junior is small, but it's a powerhouse when it comes to smoking, grilling and cooking. The unit weighs 68 pounds, and its heavy-duty construction can easily withstand quite a bit of abuse; you never have to worry about the unit breaking due to inclement weather or shoddy construction. It's a solid unit that will last you for years.

Most people are skeptical when they first hear about pellet cooking; when they finally try the Traeger, they are pleasantly surprised when it works better than gas or charcoal. With the digital thermostat, you can set the temperature and forget it, and you don't even have to turn your food over when it is cooking because of the convection blower.

When your food comes out of the Traeger, it has an authentic wood smoked flavor that you just can't get with a gas or charcoal grill. If you want to smoke your meat, simply adjust the settings and let the unit do its thing. You can buy pellets from Traeger's website, and they ship directly to your door; there are no shipping costs.