Sear Box: Learn How to Use It & Its Benefits

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  June 2, 2022

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A sear box is a special feature on pellet grills that allows you to sear your food to perfection.  It’s a small box that replaces the shelf on your grill and allows you to cook your food at higher temperatures. 

Let’s look at what it is, how it works, and why it’s so useful.

What is a sear box

BBQ Sear Box

What is a BBQ Sear Box?

A BBQ Sear Box is a propane-powered attachment that offers an additional 184 square inches of grilling surface, specially designed to vaporize drippings and create distinct sear marks on your meat. It easily replaces one of the existing burners on your pellet grill, and is a simple mounting process that can be done in minutes.

How does it work?

The sear box is constructed with cast iron grilling grates that are raised to allow for the perfect sear on your meat. The drip tray and holder are specially designed for easy management of grease, and the ignition and lighting system is infrared, which reaches crazy hot temperatures easily.

Is a BBQ Sear Box an optional add-on?

Yes, a BBQ Sear Box is an optional add-on for most grills. It runs on LP gas and often comes included with a tank holder and lava rocks to make it work.

Using a Sear Box: Tips and Tricks

Using a sear box is a straightforward process. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Remove the side shelf from your pellet grill.
2. Install the sear box in its place, making sure it fits tightly.
3. Connect the sear box to the pellet grill’s management system.
4. Turn on the pellet grill and set the temperature to high (around 450°F).
5. Ignite the sear box using the ignition system.
6. Wait for the sear box to reach the desired temperature (usually within 10-15 minutes).
7. Place your meat on the grates and let it cook for a few minutes on each side.
8. Remove the meat from the sear box and let it rest for a few minutes before serving.

If you have the funds to spare, a sear box is definitely worth considering as an upgrade to your current pellet grill. It’s a specific feature that can take your grilling game to the next level. However, if you’re on a tight budget, you may want to save up for a while before adding a sear box to your setup.

Advantages of Using a Sear Box

Enhanced Flavor and Texture

A sear box is specially designed to offer a lot of advantages when it comes to cooking BBQ food. One of the most significant advantages is that it allows you to add a crispy, caramelized crust to your meat, which is hard to achieve with other cooking methods. This crust adds a lot of flavor and texture to your meal, making it even more delicious.

Higher Temperatures

A sear box offers a lot of additional space to cook your food, and it also comes with a lot of BTUs. This means that you can achieve higher temperatures than you would with a regular BBQ grill. Higher temperatures are essential when it comes to searing meat, as it helps to create a crust while keeping the inside moist and tender.

Easy to Install

Most sear boxes come with a simple mounting system that is included in the kit. The process of attaching the sear box to your BBQ grill is straightforward and can be done in a matter of minutes. You don’t need any additional tools or equipment to install the sear box.

Efficient Use of Space

A sear box is specially designed to fit into a square shape, which makes it easy to find a suitable spot for it on your BBQ grill. It also comes with a deflector plate and an infrared screen, which helps to vaporize the drippings and add flavor to your food. The raised rib iron grates and the drip tray underneath make it easy to remove any excess fat or juices.

Sturdy and Durable

Most sear boxes are made of stainless steel, which makes them sturdy and durable. The body of the sear box is designed to withstand high temperatures and harsh weather conditions. The handy holder provided with the sear box makes it easy to store when not in use.

Comparing Sear Box and SideKick: Which is the Best Option for Your BBQ Grill?

Price Comparison

When it comes to cost, there is a pretty big difference between the Sear Box and the SideKick. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Sear Box: The Sear Box costs around $200, depending on where you find it. It’s a fair price for the extra cooking power it provides.
  • SideKick: The SideKick costs around $200 as well, but it’s important to note that it’s an accessory. If you want to add a lid to it, like the Sear Box has, that costs an additional $50.


Both the Sear Box and the SideKick are compatible with a range of grills, but there are some differences to note:

  • Sear Box: The Sear Box can be fitted to a range of grills. It’s a great option if you already have one of these grills and want to add searing capabilities.
  • SideKick: The SideKick is compatible with a wider range of grills, including Traeger grills. If you have a Traeger grill and want to add some extra cooking space, the SideKick is a good option.

Food Quality and Cooking Preferences

When it comes to cooked food, both the Sear Box and the SideKick can provide excellent results depending on your preference. Here are some things to consider:

  • Sear Box: The Sear Box is the best option if you want to sear your food quickly and get a good crust on it. It’s also a good option if you want to cook steaks or other meats to a specific temperature.
  • SideKick: The SideKick is a good option if you want to cook a wider range of foods, including vegetables and smaller items like shrimp. It also gives you the option to use it as an oven or to cook with pots and pans.

Additional Accessories

Both the Sear Box and the SideKick have some additional accessories you can choose from. Here are some to consider:

  • Sear Box: The Sear Box can be fitted with a diffuser plate, which helps to distribute heat evenly across the cooking surface. It’s a good option if you want to cook more delicate foods like fish or if you want to cook at a lower temperature.
  • SideKick: The SideKick has a range of accessories, including a griddle. It’s a good option if you want to add some utility to your grill.


So there you have it – everything you need to know about a sear box for your pellet grill. It’s a great way to add some extra flavor to your food and can help you achieve that delicious sear everyone craves.

Plus, it’s easy to use and doesn’t take up much space. So why not give it a try?

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Lakeside Smokers is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with BBQ Smoking (& Japanese food!) at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.