Traeger Timberline XL [Pellet Grill Review]

By Ben Isham-Smith

Published:

The Traeger Timberline XL aims to take backyard pellet cooking to another level with this smart Wi-Fi outdoor grill. How does its performance compare to its impressive appearance? Our pellet grill review finds out.

traeger timberline xl pellet grill

Even at first glance, you can see that the Traeger Timberline XL is an impressive piece of kit. It’s not just very large, it has a lot of customizable add-ons and the XL size means that this grill may dominate your outdoor space.

Like a lot of the newest grills on the market, this has some smart functionality including app control, and the pellet design is intended to give you an even cook with minimal monitoring. But how does the Timberline XL stack up when it comes to the cooking features and functionality?

traeger timberline xl pellet grill
Image: Traeger.com

Quick Verdict

The Traeger Timberline XL has the capacity to cook huge amounts of food for gatherings or even for a restaurant. The grill itself is well made and has the huge benefit of a lot of custom tools and add-ons, but it is prone to issues with software updates.

★★★★☆

Key Features

  • Smart Combustion™ technology. This is designed to handle the temperature and prevent it from fluctuating too much.
  • Super Smoke mode is designed to provide a blast of hardwood smoke and to create that smoky flavor.
  • Touchscreen display to control cooking, similar to how you might control an oven, plus WiFIRE app support.
  • Includes a Traeger induction cooktop for cooking sides and other meals.
  • EZ-Clean™ Grease & Ash Keg is designed to collect the ash as well as the grease and make it easy to dispose of

Ignition

This Traeger grill requires the hopper to be full, and all accessories including drip tray and heat shield to be installed properly in order to light. 

Make sure you’ve got these in place, and press the Power Button on your touchscreen control. Within a few seconds, you should receive the message “YOUR TRAEGER IS READY TO COOK”.

Now, you can adjust the dial to the required temperature, and press where it displays “PRESS HERE TO IGNITE”. 

If all is working as it should be with your grill, then this should be a breeze, but the Timberline XL has become known for slow updates, and a couple of users have had issues with the ignition.

traeger timberline xl pellet grill
Image: Traeger.com

Temperature Range

This grill has a great temperature range and goes all the way up to 500 °F, a good temperature for searing food and for frying and grilling. It’s just as easy to cook at this high temperature as it is to cook “low and slow”.

The temperature control is also pretty reliable, so you can be sure that it is going to be cooking at the temperature you set. Dual-wall construction means there is very little temperature fluctuation. 

Build Quality

The dual-wall construction is one of the indicators that this grill is so well made. For the price of the grill, this is really nothing more than you would expect. When you are buying a grill that is in this sort of price range you don’t want to be let down by shoddy construction.

The only question mark may be over the electronics. A fair few users have found issues with the motherboard and software updates, which can be very frustrating.

Customization

One of the best things about this grill is the fact that you can customize it almost endlessly. A great function of Timberline XL (and other Traeger grills) is the P.A.L. Pop-And-Lock® and ModiFIRE® accessories range. 

These make it super easy to add racks, storage, hooks for your tools. Even shelves and roll racks can be added to the grill. This customization is a great touch that allows you to get exactly what you want out of the Timberline XL and always have your tools, spices and accessories to hand.

traeger timberline xl pellet grill
Image: Traeger.com

Cooking Performance

So, how does the Timberline XL cook food? This is one of the most important factors when looking for a grill, and at this price you want quality and versatility.

Smoking

This is a great grill for smoking for a few reasons. One is the stability of temperature that means you can set this and forget it. A 22 lb hopper will continue feeding wood chips in to keep the food at the right temperature. 

Super Smoke mode is another top feature for those looking to experiment with the flavors of smoke and fire. It gives a blast of smoky flavor to whatever you are cooking, whether you have left it for an hour or 10 hours. 

Grilling

With a great temperature range up to 500 °F this is great for grilling, and don’t forget you can even add a skillet to the induction cooktop to expand the cook space and enhance your cooking options. This performs well grilling meat and vegetables, and can even add a smoky flavor without hours of cooking.

Cooking Space

A total of 1320 square inches provides you with loads of room for cooking. Three racks and a separate cooktop also means there are even more options. You can fit around nine whole chickens in this grill, to give you some idea of how much space is on offer.

Pros

  • Virtually endless cooking options and configurations thanks to the customizable design.
  • Reliable temperature control avoiding huge fluctuations.
  • Option to add a blast of hardwood smoke to impart flavor on your cooking.

Cons

  • Some users have had problems with the digital controls, updates, and even motherboard issues.
  • It’s quite an expensive grill for what it is, and there are cheaper options on the market today. 

Final Verdict

The Traeger Timberline XL is definitely on the upper end of the market when you consider the price. Assuming everything works as desired, though, it is certainly one of the best grills you can buy, even for the significant expense. 

The Timberline XL is also customizable in a way that most grills are not, giving you flexibility and the option to cook in many different styles. This can be the center of a functioning outdoor kitchen, not just a way to grill some meat on a sunny afternoon. 

About the Author

Ben Isham-Smith

A BBQ obsessive, Ben is behind 250+ of The Online Grill’s recipes, as well as countless barbecue guides to help barbecue newbies get to grips with the world’s best form of cooking.


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