REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

For those of you that follow me on my BBQ Bros YouTube Channel, you know that I’ve been cooking on a REC TEC pellet grill for a few months now.  With the craziness of life, I’ve been quite behind on updating my blog…so… I’m finally just getting the chance to post this written review of the REC TEC Pellet Grill.  For those of you that prefer video, I also filmed the unboxing and review, so make sure to check that out here or click on the link at the bottom of this post.

As most of you know, I have a small arsenal of BBQ smokers/grills including charcoal kettles, ceramic kamados and even a cool little electric smoker.  I had my eye on pellet smokers/grills for a while and came across an opportunity to test out one of the REC TEC pellet grills.  Pellet grills have become increasingly popular in recent years due to the fact that they are incredibly convenient to use and also because both the heat and flavor come from wood pellets.  What this essentially means is that it’s quite easy to crank out amazingly tasty food, time and time again, with very little effort involved.

My overall opinion of this grill/smoker so far is that it is incredibly convenient and easy to use; it produces a nice, subtle smoke flavor; and the food comes our super tender/juicy and full of flavor.  I would not necessarily consider the REC TEC as a “grill” though, as my personal definition of a “grill” is a cooker that involves a direct, open-flame cooking environment.  One very easy way to produce a grill-like experience on this cooker however is to use a set of the GrillGrates.

I’ve provided a ton of pictures below (plus an unboxing and review video) and thought the easiest way to walk you through this review would be to just provide captions for each picture.

Here it is straight off the 18-wheeler.  This is the REC TEC Bronze Package that comes with 220 lbs of pellets.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

Packaging.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

More packaging.  The grill was nice and supported for shipping.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

Most of the pieces, components, accessories, etc…were packaged inside of the cooker.

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Here’s everything laid out to give ya an idea of how much is involved on the assembly….it’s not that bad.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Here I am….er….here’s my wife….hard at work….

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 And here I am again…..er….here are my girls…hard at work….

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

Approximately 45 min later, here is the grill completely assembled.  The assembly was very straightforward.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Here’s a shot from the backside showing the 40 lb pellet hopper and the power cord coming out of the Smart Grill Technology panel.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Here’s a shot that shows you the pellet hopper door open with about 25-30 lbs of pellets I had just dumped in.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Another shot of the pellet hopper.  As you can see, it holds a TON of pellets which will last many cooks.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

Here is a closeup of the stainless steel towel ring.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 The chimney on the REC TEC pellet grill.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 This is the bucket that catches all of the drippings that flow off of the stainless steel drip pan.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 These are the rollerblade style wheels that have locking casters.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 And here are the larger, rear wheels which make moving this cooker around a piece of cake.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 This shot shows the power cord that exits the Smart Grill Technology control panel as well as the wires that come from the electrical components of the inside of the grill to the control panel.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 This is one of my favorite finishing touches they put on this cooker.  They stamped on “REC TEC GRILLS” into the top of the Smart Grill Technology control panel.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 If you’ve been following my videos of my cooks on this REC TEC, you’ve seen this classic REC TEC logo repeatedly…

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Looking inside towards the chimney without the drip pan installed.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 The internal pit probe is installed on the left side of the grill.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Looking straight down at the fire pot.  Per the user manual, for the initial first burn, I placed a hand full of pellets into the pot.  The auger sends pellets down from the top side of the fire pot.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 This is where I installed the heat deflector on top of the fire pot.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Here’s a nice shot that shows you what this smoker looks like with the stainless steel drip pan installed.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 A closeup of the Smart Grill Technology control panel.  The on/off switch to the right controls the light inside of the pit; the on/off push button to the far left turns the grill on; the up/down push buttons adjust the pit temp; and the “Actual”/”Set Point” push button give you a read of what you want your temp to be and where your temp is currently at.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 Per the user manual, the first order of business is cranking this beast up to 500° for 30-40 minutes to burn off any leftover residues from manufacturing.  You can see the smoke pouring out as it cranks up!

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 These are a set of Frog Mats that I got with the grill.  They are a non-stick cooking surface that were designed for indirect cooking.  Check them out when you get a chance.  I love these things!

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

 And lastly…as part of the first burn, I tossed in some bacon to help cure the cooker.

REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

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6 Responses to REC TEC Pellet Grill Review

  1. Andy February 22, 2016 at 8:55 pm #

    What am I missing in the cooking part of the video here? Where is the smoke? You use pellets to create the heat right? Where da smoke? So does the RecTec only create smoke at low temps and if so what range would that be? Thanks. Nice videos brother. Andy

    • Steve March 16, 2016 at 5:30 pm #

      The smoke on most pellet grills, including the REC TEC, is fairly subtle compared to a lot of smokers…but it’s just the perfect amount in my opinion. The pellets are producing both the heat and the smoke, but depending on what you have your temp set at, the auger only pushes pellets into the fire pot as needed. The REC TEC has an “EXTREME SMOKE” setting on it though that cuts the blower on and off intermittently so the pellets smolder more, producing more smoke. If you like a heavier smoke flavor though, then the other option is added a smoke tube inside your pellet grill. I’ve done that too….but normally just enjoy the flavor I get directly from what the REC TEC produces.

  2. SmokeyPitMaster March 31, 2016 at 1:11 pm #

    I have had to repair my rectec grill 3 times now since purchasing less then 1 year ago… – 3 repairs very frustrating.

    • Steve April 16, 2016 at 12:00 pm #

      What have been the issues? Only probably I’ve had on either of mine is water got inside the control box on one of them I think and it went bad…but they immediately sent me a replacement. They have some of the best customer service I have ever seen. Did they take of you?

  3. Larry December 16, 2016 at 12:51 pm #

    I agree with Andy, I just recently purchased a RT-680 & the amount of smoke it delivers is minimal, & yes the smoke flavor is subtle, barely detectable for me. Customer service recommended that I place wood chips on my flame deflector!!! I mean REALLY!!! Rec Tec has yet to approve my review of my unit. I guess I will have to use a pellet tube to get the smoke I want. For years I used a Bullet type propane smoker with wood chips & it truly was a SMOKER!!! The RT-680 is a beautiful well built unit but not much of a smoker! In my opinion!

    • Steve December 18, 2016 at 9:38 am #

      As you mentioned…it really comes down to personal preference. I don’t like a heavy smoke flavor so my REC TECs are typically my go-to smokers. I’ve used the pellet tube some when I wanted to step that up and it worked great. Never heard about placing wood chips on the flame deflector though…I’ll have to look into that…

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