Suppose you have got a Charcoal grill and want to turn it into a smoker. What will you do? Probably, you will try a Smokin ‘stone.
But what if it’s not available. Besides, they are expensive too. So, isn’t it better to look for some budget-friendly options?
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That’s when people tend to get Akorn smoking stone alternatives such as pizza pans, frying pans, etc. You can easily afford them. And they deliver similar heat retention as a Smokin stone.
So, let’s look forward to the six best Char-Griller Smokin stone alternatives that can save your bank account.
Best Char-Griller Smokin Stone Alternatives
There are countless choices actually. But it can be a hit or miss if you don’t choose it wisely. So, with years of experience and hours of research, I handpicked the following six products to compete with your current expensive stone.
Let’s see how they work!
Restaurant-Grade Aluminum Pizza Pan
First, let’s get into the detailed discussion on an Aluminum pizza pan from New Star Foodservice, the name needs no introduction. It’s a restaurant-grade pan on an affordable budget.
Aside from restaurants, it’s suitable for pizza parlors and buffets too. And the restaurant-grade Aluminum makes it sturdy enough to withstand a large number of toppings.
- Weighs 1 pound only
- Built with restaurant-grade aluminum
- A 10-inch pizza pan comes in a pack of 6
- The sloped edges don’t let the topping spill
- Seamless construction with a smooth surface
Being made with solid Aluminum, this coupe-style pizza pan makes serving pizza a breeze. No matter how large toppings you add, it won’t bend.
Being lightweight, it’s easy to carry. And the durable 18-gauge Aluminum build-up makes it perfect for everyday use.
As the pan consists of a seamless architecture, there are no rough and sharp edges to bother you. Resultantly, you can clean it faster, saving a lot of time.
Aside from the coupe, they are available in wide rim style as well. And coming in a pack of 6, it’s quite cost-effective too.
Overall, it can be a decent alternative to the Char-Griller Smokin stone with its easy-to-use ergonomics.
- Lasts pretty long
- A heat-proof pan
- Very easy to clean
- Offers versatile usages
- Available in a wide variety of sizes
- Scratches too easily
- You need to handwash it as it’s not dishwasher-safe
Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet
Now, let’s move on to a cast iron skillet from Lodge, the name always goes hand in hand with superior quality. Let’s check out what their 10.25 inches cast iron pan has in store to offer.
Talking about its conveniences, if you are looking for a multipurpose tool to bake, saute, sear, fry, grill, or broil, go for this versatile pan right away.
With a proper cast iron coating, it doesn’t get sticky. Besides, the handles on both sides make it easier to carry.
- Made in the USA
- A dual-handle pan in 10.25″ size
- Suitable for any induction cooktops
- Very well-made with cast iron seasoning
- Have the dimensions of 12.81×10.69×2 inches
As we all know, cast iron is a premium quality metal with excellent heat retention. Besides, it eliminates any hotspot with even heat distribution.
Therefore, this 10.25″ pan is compatible with any induction stovetop with an unfailing performance.
Whether you use it at home or in the campfire, rest assured that it will never disappoint you.
Moreover, being a seasoned cast iron skillet, you can use it on different heat sources such as gas, electric, induction ovens, etc.
But please be careful if you are using it on a glass stovetop. If you slide the cookware harshly, it may leave a scratch on the surface. So, watch out!
- Worth the price
- Smooth and seasoned surface
- Dynamic 2 handles for easy lifting
- Unparalleled heat-retaining capacity
- Ensures even cooking without creating hotspots
- The packaging was not that great
- Excessive use of water makes it rust
BBQube Stainless Steel Heat Deflector
If you like making every meal a great memory, this stainless steel heat deflector could be a great alternative to Akorn smoking stone. However, it’s a bit different in shape compared to the previous two products.
Let’s see how it performs to let you use your Char-Griller in a better way.
- Offers an even heat flow
- Folded edges for strong support
- Made with heavy-duty stainless steel
- Features laser cut for proper fitment
- The sturdy architecture makes it last longer
- Produces indirect high flame to smoke faster
If I compare it to a Smokin stone for Kamado Jr Charcoal grill, the heat deflector works better by creating a block between the grill and the flame.
And therefore, you can cook more confidently as the indirect flame wouldn’t bother you much.
But don’t get confused if the food will be undercooked. No way! It lets the heat still flow conveniently for searing, braising, baking, or smoking perfectly.
Even if you are using a small akorn or Kamado Joe, the stainless steel deflector makes it work like a full-size Char-Griller with an even surface.
With the heavy-gauge stainless steel construction, you can turn your grill into a convection oven, thanks to the rugged edges. Also, placing a small foil pan over the heat deflector could collect grease better.
All things considered, I highly recommend this heat deflector/drip pan as it works with any grill.
- High and even heat production
- A versatile drip pan with several usages
- The laser-cut makes it fit perfectly on any grill
- Takes time and effort to remove the sticker label on top
American Metalcraft Coupe Style Pan
Next on the lineup, I came up with the cheapest alternative of Char-Griller Smokin stone and that is an Aluminum pan from American Metalcraft.
To my surprise, this 14 gauge-Aluminum pan costs less than $10, that too with an industry-grade performance.
Similar to the New Star Foodservice Pizza Pan, it is crafted in the coupe style too. As a result, transportation becomes a breeze whatever you need to serve with this 11″ tray.
That being said, let’s have a look at its key features below.
- An 11″ Aluminum pan
- Dimensions: 4.42×4.42×4.6 inches
- Features high-tech engineering to last long
- Features 14 gauge thickness for heavy-duty use
- Made of the finest Aluminum available on the market
First of all, I would like to take my time to praise its coupe-style construction. Thanks to that, you can use the same pan for baking, slicing, and serving food. How convenient, isn’t it?
Apart from that, the lowest price tag draws your attention for sure. And most interestingly, the cheap price point doesn’t make it any less than a high-end deflector. Rather, you get your job done pretty smoothly with its outstanding heat retention capability.
Moreover, you will love the wide and flat surface of this cooking tray that lets you bake a pizza dough quite effortlessly.
However, a special note to remember is that it is suggested for hand wash by the manufacturers. So, follow that strictly to expand its lifespan.
- Perfect for everyday use
- Extremely budget-friendly
- Very sturdy craftsmanship
- Sustain wear and tear pretty well
- Withstand high heat for a long period
- Not as thick as expected
- Runs a bit bigger than mentioned
BBQ Heat Deflector Ceramic Stone
Need a large heat deflector to fit your Char griller? Look no further as you got the product right here. This 17″ heavy-duty pizza stone from MixRBBQ works wonders when it comes to fitting a versatile range of grills such as Akorn Kamado, Char-Griller 6201, or Large Big Green Egg.
- Made of ceramic
- Comes in an oval shape
- A great fit for most larger grills out there
- Even heat circulation for convection style cooking
- A smoking stone with a 17″ outer circle, 13″ inner circle, and 0.80″ thickness
The most amazing thing about this irresistible heat deflector is that it prevents charring with superior heat-retaining capacity.
Also, being made with pure ceramic, it is compatible with high heat to smoke better.
As a result, you can enjoy high heat cooking to the fullest. Besides, low and slow smoking becomes more versatile with ribs, briskets, or chicken.
However, you need to be careful while cleaning it. Let it be cool and never use soap. Just use regular water and a clean piece of cloth.
What’s more interesting is that you get a 90 days refund or reship service for free if the pan breaks during transportation.
Despite the positives, a slightly bothering issue is that it doesn’t come cheap as the other Char-Griller Smokin stone alternatives. Other than that, it performs pretty well in baking pizzas, bread, or cookies.
- No charring or scorching food
- Very well-made with premium ceramic
- Superior heat flow to keep the food moist
- A bit expensive
- The fragile construction makes it breakage-prone
Cast Iron Seasoned Finished Pie Pan
Finally, meet an exclusive cast iron pie pan from Camp Chef, the name always lived up to its promises. With the 10″ seasoned pie pan, they made that claim true once more. Let’s see what made me pick this pan in this top six list.
- Features two cast iron handles
- A 10″ pan with a smooth finish
- Perfect for flat top outdoor grilling
- Lightweight construction for easy lifting
- Creates golden brown crusts while cooking
When it comes to finding the best Smokin stone substitute for Char-Griller, Camp Chef is the name to look for.
With their simple yet durable design, they let you save your hard-earned money by manufacturing budget-friendly alternatives to those high-priced smoking stones.
Now you might wonder that this is a 10″ pie pan whereas most pie recipes are for 9″ pie plates. Does that affect your recipes?
No, not a bit. In fact, the bottom dimensions of this 10″ pan run narrower. That’s why that one extra inch doesn’t make any difference. Indeed, it works better for a dip dish pie.
Often, I use this pan when I need a crust on my food, and trust me, it outplays all other contemporary cast iron pans.
In addition, you can use it under an oven broiler too.
In a word, you can never go wrong with this seasoned pie plate. So, what’s making you hesitate? Get it right away!
- No soggy pie bottoms
- Fully seasoned cast iron surface
- Very inexpensive as a cast iron pie pan
- Two decorative molded handles for easy operation
- The metal smell is a bit annoying
- Doesn’t offer a complete no-stick performance
What To Look For While Selecting The Char-Griller Smokin Stone Alternative
There are some basic things to look for when selecting the best Smokin stone variant. Let’s check them out below.
This is the reason for choosing a substitute over the original smoking stone, right? So, it must cost way less than the stone. There are hundreds of affordable options. So, choose your pick based on your preferences.
It must come with an extended lifespan. Who wants the hassle of buying a new stone for smoking food every month? That’s why I personally use the Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet for its next-level longevity.
Being made of heavy-duty cast iron, the skillet is a USA-made product giving hard competition to any Char-Griller Smokin stone out there.
Please check out the size and dimensions of the product and whether it fits your grill or not. An ill-fitted smoking stone alternative wouldn’t be of much help.
- Heat Retention
As most of the original smoking stones for the Charcoal grill are capable of withstanding high temperature, the alternative one should do so as well. Besides, even heat flow is an absolute must to disseminate hot spots.
Char-Griller Smokin Stone Vs Its Alternative
Well, there is not much to say in this regard. Both perform similarly in terms of making the grill a convection oven.
In a smoking stone, the unique design is a big plus for diverting heat around the grill perimeter.
On the other hand, smoking stone substitutes come in different shapes like oval, round, etc. Although that doesn’t make much difference.
However, the MixRBBQ Ceramic Stone has a similar shape to an authentic stone offering the same heat deflection ability.
But the biggest disparity lies in the price. Original stones are more expensive than their substitutes. Therefore, I prefer affordable alternatives over them as both work more or less the same for smoking food without burning.
Are The Alternatives Worth Buying
Absolutely yes. First of all, they came really cheap. So even if you are not satisfied with their performances, you can always go for their original counterparts.
But, truth be told, they are worth every penny. From high heat retention to blocking food from direct flame, these inexpensive alternatives work great for baking, cooking, roasting, or searing. Besides, they are also suitable for low and slow cooking.
On top of that, most of them are usable for various purposes including slicing food and serving.
So, yes, they are highly cost-effective.
Why Someone Looking For Alternative To Char-Griller Smokin Stone
First of all, the Char griller Smokin stones are not always available in your preferred sizes. That’s why people aim at finding their substitutes. Secondly, they come cheaper with almost the same quality as heat diffusers.
Aren’t these two reasons enough to look for alternative options to Char-Griller Smokin stones?
To wrap up this guide, I sincerely hope you find your desired Char-Griller Smokin stone alternative from the list above. Yes, you can go for the original Smokin stone for your Charcoal grill. But despite being expensive, they are not indestructible.
And the substitutes I described above perform pretty similarly. So, why waste money?
Go for a versatile smoking stone substitute like the Lodge Cast Iron Skillet. Being fully seasoned with high-quality cast iron, it works great for baking, smoking, roasting, grilling, or braising.
The BBQube Stainless Steel Heat Deflector is also a wise selection if you prefer high heat retention.
Decided on your pick already? Do share your experience by commenting below.