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Life's Universal Question - Does size really matter?

I've been lurking in the forum for weeks and have really enjoyed seeing the great advice being offered. I will be switching from my trusty WSM to an Egg but wasn't sure which size to go with. My first thought is to go with the XL (or even consider waiting for the XXL) but I've noticed many of you with multiple Eggs have opted for the smaller sizes.

We are a family of five (three teenage boys with big appetites) so I'm sure I'll need the larger size but I was wondering if the smaller Eggs cook better for small servings or can I get the same results using the XL with less lump?

Thanks

 

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Comments

  • bud812bud812 Posts: 1,178
    A large with an Adj Rack is a good place to start. IMHO

    Not to get technical, but according to chemistry alcohol is a solution...

    Large & Small BGE

    Stockton Ca.

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,692
    Welcome to the forum!  A large will suffice for 5 but an XL will give you the option to cook even more for parties, guests, etc.  Larger the egg, the more lump it burns.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • TexanOfTheNorthTexanOfTheNorth Posts: 2,750
    I only have a large myself but, I believe one of the reasons for having multiple sizes (or just eggs) is to be able to do two or more different kinds of cooks at the same time. Some also have the smaller eggs for portability. I think you'll find that the large will accomodate most of what you need to cook for your size family.

    And, by the way... welcome
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
  • ThatgrimguyThatgrimguy Posts: 845
    edited June 2013
    The XL can do everything the Large can do, but twice of it at once. I debated for a long time over large v. XL and decided XL was better even though it's just me and Fiance. More options, more flexibility and with all the lump reducing options you will never think "man I wish I had gotten the large"  (the old XL with the squat lid, did not cook as well as the large, they have fixed these issues)
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 16,121
    im a fan of the large and two eggs are better than one even though i rarely use the small. an xl would be better for pizzas though because bigger pies would be better. if i did it over again it would be two larges and a mini. if you need the space it might be an xl for you
  • ibandaibanda Posts: 430
    You can certainly cook for more than five on a large. I can easily cook 8 or more burgers or a 14lb brisket on a large.  If you are regularly grilling for five plus company an XL might be nice but not necessary. I would not advise waiting on an XXL. Get an L or XL and start cooking!
    "Bacon tastes gooood, pork chops taste gooood." - Vincent Vega, Pulp Fiction
  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,273

    Have had a Large for a while.   Never regretted the selection.   Knowing what I know now - if the Large would not handle the volume I wanted to cook, I would rather have a smaller second egg than the XL.

    Guess in the end, depends on the quantity of food for each cook that you need.   I have been able to feed alot of people off of the Large with a little bit of planning.   For example, do a brisket over night, throw some sasauges on towards the end.   Foil the Brisket, cold bath and refrig the sausesgages.   Splatchcock a chicken, reheat the sausages while the chicken is finishing.  Cut the brisket while the Chicken rests - etc.

     

    Cookin in Texas
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 16,121
    before making a decision google ceramic grill store and look at the adjustable rig and spider/stone combos. pass on the platesetter and get one of those and the cooking possibilities go way up, multiple level cooking, wok cooking, raised direct cooking, indirect oven style cooking.  also most think they will keep on cooking like they did on the old gasser, your food choices change, whole roasts, hams turkeys, leg of lamb, casseroles. you can feed a crew with a 12 pound plus ham or beef roast and pump out steak and cheese subs all day with the wok setup, hardly even think to cook a burger now, on goes a big meatlof, maybe two for sandwiches tomorrow
  • lowandslowlowandslow Posts: 22
    That's what she said!!

    I had the same dilemma.  Only 2 ppl in my house.  Go with the XL.  You will never have to regret going too big.  Invest in the 2nd tier as well.  The XL gives you way more flexibility if you host a bbq.  For a bbq, I was able to fit 6 racks of ribs and 2 pork butts with no issues.  There was even some room to spare.  Also, the XL in my opinion is better for pizza.  You can get a larger pizza stone.  The Large stone in my opinion is a little small.  Lastly, the one thing that bothered me about the Large was the grate is a good 3-4 inches below the gasket (opening) level, which can make it awkward to flip a burger if it is close to the front of the egg.  The XL cooking surface is only about 2 inches below the opening, making it much easier to flip food if you have a lot of food on there.

    Go with with XL.  No doubt.  
    Hasbrouck Heights, NJ
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 16,121

    That's what she said!!

    I had the same dilemma.  Only 2 ppl in my house.  Go with the XL.  You will never have to regret going too big.  Invest in the 2nd tier as well.  The XL gives you way more flexibility if you host a bbq.  For a bbq, I was able to fit 6 racks of ribs and 2 pork butts with no issues.  There was even some room to spare.  Also, the XL in my opinion is better for pizza.  You can get a larger pizza stone.  The Large stone in my opinion is a little small.  Lastly, the one thing that bothered me about the Large was the grate is a good 3-4 inches below the gasket (opening) level, which can make it awkward to flip a burger if it is close to the front of the egg.  The XL cooking surface is only about 2 inches below the opening, making it much easier to flip food if you have a lot of food on there.

    Go with with XL.  No doubt.  
    i agree with you on the pizza but the standing record on a rib cook is 20 racks on a large. first upgrade on an egg is to raise that grid to felt level
    ;)
  • dlk7dlk7 Posts: 982
    I have seen very few people on this forum stating they regretted getting the XL.  I picked up my first one in March of 2012 and a second in June.  They are extremely easy to configure for direct and indirect at the same time.  As stated above, you can limit the amount of charcoal use through reducing rings or only starting the lump below the needed cooking space.  I've smoked butts and briskets for well over 24 hours with less than half the lump being used.  As soon as your friends and neighbors hear that you have an egg, you will be hosting a lot more and bigger parties very soon.  Good luck with your decision.

    Two XL BGEs - So Happy!!!!

    Waunakee, WI

  • LitLit Posts: 2,922
    I have a large and XL and space will get tight cooking for 5 on the large. Not for every meal and you could get by with a large but the extra space on the XL is nice.
  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 3,596
    edited June 2013

    First comment--- I would suggest buying the largest your budget allows with the understanding that a smaller one is probably in the cards down the road. For 5 I would probably get the XL, although it is hard for me to see not being able to cook for 5 on the large. Espcially with after market assessories like the adjustable rig.

    Me, I have a large (and a mini) and it has been plenty big. I just purchased an AR to allow even more real estate. I cannot see needing more than I can cook for on my large now unless you cook for 15+ people regularly.

    That said, considering everythingI would say grab a large and use the savings to buy the AR, thermopen and/or a few other valuable assessories. Good luck and welcome.

    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • GogogordyGogogordy Posts: 412
    I was advised to get a large when I selected mine, advice I neglected to take choosing instead a med. since it's also "just the two of us". I was quickly a bit regretful for not having gone for the large, accessory selection and grill-estate considertions quickly becoming apparent. That said, the addition of the grill extender which MCN and Eggscellsior have helped many of us procure has taken the edge off of the size issue but would I have it to do over again, Id likely get the large* (In the boating world this is known as "two foot-itis" ) but weve had sooo many delicious meals from that medium I really have no regrets. *....and the grill extender! (seriously the grill extender has been a very worthwhile addition)
    When I'm not Eggin', I'm scootin'   Eggin' and 'cueing from Temecula Ca; an hour from San Diego, an hour and five minutes from Palm Springs, and an hour and a half from Los Angeles (yeah, right. With THAT traffic?)
  • shtgunal3shtgunal3 Posts: 2,620
    Family of 8 here. Been cooking on a large since December . Plenty of room. Recently added a small for smaller cooks and sides. Plus I wanted to go mobile.

    ___________________________________

     

     LBGE,SBGE Sweet home Alabama........ Stay thirsty my friends .

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,692
    I don't regret getting the large.  There are more accessories for it than the other sizes.   Many folks on this forum end up with an entire family of eggs, so you can always get a second (or third) or upgrade.  That said, an XL is a good choice too.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • egger aveegger ave Posts: 505
    I have a large and a mini. More versatile IMHO to have two grills rather than one. A large will cook more than you think. Maybe a large and a mini or small?
    1 Large BGE, 1 Mini BGE, Original wife and 4 dogs living in the heart of BBQ country in Round Rock Texas. "Friends don't let friends cook with propane"
  • jccbone62jccbone62 Posts: 194
    With a family of five I suggest an xl. Once you really get into cooking on an egg, you will want to cook even more. With 5 to feed and three of them teenage boys, I'm sure you will benefit from volume. The savings over eating out will be noticeable. That's my 2 cents. Happy egging....
    XL owner in Wichita, KS
  • NJ_BBQNJ_BBQ Posts: 77
    I don't regret getting the large.  There are more accessories for it than the other sizes.   Many folks on this forum end up with an entire family of eggs, so you can always get a second (or third) or upgrade.  That said, an XL is a good choice too.
    Thank you all for your posts, lots to consider. Your comment of possibly not having all of the accessories for sizes other than L is a concern. Being a newbie and reading the forum I still haven't figured out which accessories I'll need or what the heck a spider or woo will do for me. I'll keep reading and learning.
  • LitLit Posts: 2,922
    They make all the accessories for the XL that they make for the large if not more. The smaller sizes are the ones with less accessories.
  • HeathBarHeathBar Posts: 21
    Have a XL and have never regretted it.

    By the time you buy all the accessories for the large to give you the same grill footprint you could have had the XL.

    It boggles me that people quibble over how much lump you burn. People that use BGEs inherently buy better meat, take more care and interest in their cooks. Would a couple of bucks at most stop you from a great meal after you have spent a 1000+ bucks?

    Now I will admit I think that if you are mostly going to smoke briskets, butts etc maybe a large is better. Real estate probably not as important. If you do more steaks, pizza, "grilling" etc the grid area is certainly more important. It is great to have indirect and direct at the same time.
    XL BGE 
  • freddyjfreddyj Posts: 98
    I have a family of 5, get the XL and don't listen to the "it uses more fuel" comments. The only people who say that don't own an xl ;)
  • SpringramSpringram Posts: 417
    Welcome to the forum!  A large will suffice for 5 but an XL will give you the option to cook even more for parties, guests, etc.  Larger the egg, the more lump it burns.
    + 1         I would imagine you really can get tired of the the lager usage of charcoal on an XL but....they do have charcoal rings available to reduce the amount needed for smaller cooks. 3 boys ?   you better be prepared, my friend!

    Springram
    Spring, Texas
    LBGE and Mini
  • ScottborasjrScottborasjr Posts: 1,965
    I would go out on a limb and say that with three hungry teenagers, (along with their tag along friends) you can't go wrong with the large or the XL.  However if cost is an issue in order to get the most out of either grill will cost you another couple hundred at least to get the best out of them. 

    Look through www.ceramicgrillstore.com website and look at the Adjustable Rig, Woo, and Spider setups. 

    Buy a thermapen now, even if you don't get a Egg for a while your cooking will improve dramatically by knowing exactly where you are at temperature wise.

    Depending on budget look at what kind of temperature monitor you can get for your low and slow cooks.

    Keep reading this forum, and good luck with your new acquisition.
    I raise my kids, cook and golf.  When work gets in the way I'm pissed, I'm pissed off 48 weeks a year.
    Inbetween Iowa and Colorado, not close to anything remotely entertaining outside of football season. 
  • ThatgrimguyThatgrimguy Posts: 845
    I don't regret getting the large.  There are more accessories for it than the other sizes.   Many folks on this forum end up with an entire family of eggs, so you can always get a second (or third) or upgrade.  That said, an XL is a good choice too.
    What can you get for a Large that you can't get for an XL?
  • ThatgrimguyThatgrimguy Posts: 845
    edited June 2013
    Springram said:
    Welcome to the forum!  A large will suffice for 5 but an XL will give you the option to cook even more for parties, guests, etc.  Larger the egg, the more lump it burns.
    + 1         I would imagine you really can get tired of the the lager usage of charcoal on an XL but....they do have charcoal rings available to reduce the amount needed for smaller cooks. 3 boys ?   you better be prepared, my friend!

    Springram
    Spring, Texas
    The charcoal issue is way oversold. You don't consume enough extra charcoal for that to be part of the decision. (a better gasket would make a way bigger difference in coal consumption than large v. xl)
  • GATABITESGATABITES Posts: 819
    edited June 2013
    @NJ_BBQ - This question really depends on your budget. We all will give you an informed decision (support our own decision for each of our individual purchases) but make your decision based off of which egg provides the best solution to meet the appetite demands of your family/friends. You have a decent size family with growing boys and their friends (at times). When you start producing succulent meals your family will want to invite ppl over to help consume. 

    I personally have a small family as it is just my fiance and our 3 month old son. With that being said, she has a large extended family - coupled with the fact that I LOVE to Entertain (even more now that I am a BGE CHEF; did you get your certificate when you purchased your egg? - LOL) I knew the XL was the way to go for me. I dont always fill my egg to capacity with lump. Last week, I made a full 3-coarse meal on the egg (steak, asparagus and roasted potatoes). I cooked the steak direct with the lump placed on one side of the fire box and I also cooked asparagus and roasted potatoes over the indirect portion of my grid. I dont even have the Adj Rig yet; which is second on the next things to purchase. I have enough cooking capabilities that I can be patient and purchase when i am ready. 

    Trust me, you will invest in the many accessories - so dont be fixed on your initial investment cost. I have spent a lot of dough to support this hobby that goes well beyond the cost of the egg (quality cuts of meat, cart, tools, thermometers, rubs, sauces, lump etc). Look down the road and think what size makes the most sense long term. I think you will come to a conclusion that you and your family/friends will be happy with. 

    So, YES - SIZE DOES MATTER!!! LOL 
    XL BGE 
    Joe JR 
    Reisterstown, MD
  • bigguy136bigguy136 Posts: 865
    I would go with two larges. It gives you the freedom of different temps and you can share accessories between both.

    Big Lake, Minnesota

    Large BGE, Stokers, Adjustable Rig

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,692

    I don't regret getting the large.  There are more accessories for it than the other sizes.   Many folks on this forum end up with an entire family of eggs, so you can always get a second (or third) or upgrade.  That said, an XL is a good choice too.
    What can you get for a Large that you can't get for an XL?
    High-Q grate.  But I'm wrong....there are all the lump reducer family of stuff that turns your xl in to a large.  So guess you're right.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 16,121
    bigguy136 said:
    I would go with two larges. It gives you the freedom of different temps and you can share accessories between both.
    ive come to that same conclusion over the years, would be hard to not be able to cook for huge crowds with that setup unless your doing voluntary cooks at army bases etc
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