The Pro 34, Traeger’s original large Pro Series grill, has long been the best-selling pellet grill worldwide. Though the Pro 34 has been recently upgraded to the Pro 780, it remains a popular choice due to its history of success. In this article, we’ll explore why the Pro 34 is the world’s favorite pellet grill.
The Pro 34 is a pellet grill manufactured by Traeger. It boasts an ample 884 square inches of cooking area, making it suitable for smoking or grilling large cuts of meat. Its design is simple and straightforward, with no frills. It’s an ideal size for a standard outdoor area, being compact and lightweight, weighing 136 lbs and measuring 49 inches in height, 27 inches in depth, and 53 inches in width, which makes it easy to move around. Temperature control on this grill is precise, with a range between 160° F and 450° F, allowing for a variety of cooking options.
Some users might experience hot and cold spots on the grill, but it can be worked around by rotating meat occasionally for even cooking. It is a great option for beginner smokers due to its set-and-forget capabilities. It also features an 18 lbs pellet hopper capacity and comes with 2 meat probes.
- Pro 34 is one of the best entry-level pellet grills in its price range
- 884 square inches of cooking area
- No-frills, straightforward design
- Ideal size for a standard outdoor area, compact and easy to move around
- Temperature range between 160° F and 450° F, precise temperature control
- May experience some hot and cold spots, rotate meat occasionally for even cooking
- Ideal for beginner smokers, set-and-forget capabilities
- 18 lbs pellet hopper capacity, 2 meat probes
- Weighs 136 lbs, dimensions: 49 in height, 27 inches depth, 53 inches width
Pro 34 Features
- If you’re on a budget, the Pro 34 is one of the best entry-level pellet grills in the price range.
- The Pro 34 has 884 square inches of cooking area which is enough to cook a lot of meat.
- The Pro 34 is a no frills pellet grill. Traeger integrates technology into all the new models technology, whereas the Pro 34 is straightforward.
- The Pro 34 is the ideal size for a standard outdoor area. It will not take up too much space, but still large enough to cook a lot of meat.
Pro 34 Specs
Cooking area 884 square inches
- Weighs 136 lbs
- Height 49 in
- Depth 27 inches
- Width 53 in
- 2 meat probes
- 18 lbs pellet hopper
- Temperature range 180⁰F to 500⁰F.
Traeger Price Chart
|Ranger (portable)||$449 (see latest)|
|Tailgater (portable)||$529 (see latest)|
|Pro 22 (Gen 1)||$599 (see latest)|
|Pro 34 (Gen 1)||$699 (see latest)|
|Pro 575||$899 (see latest)|
|Pro 780||$999 (see latest)|
|Ironwood 650||$1399 (see latest)|
|Ironwood 885||$1599 (see latest)|
|Timberline 850 (Gen 1)||$2099 (see latest)|
|Timberline 1300 (Gen 1)||$2299 (see latest)|
|Timberline||$3499 (see latest)|
|Timberline XL||$3799 (see latest)|
The Pro 34 has 884 square inches of grill space, which is enough to cook 40 burgers, or eight whole chickens, or seven racks of ribs. You could easily cook two large briskets on a Pro 34.
There are two levels of racks. If you want to cook a large turkey, just remove the top rack for more vertical space.
Size and Weight
The Pro 34 boasts a compact design, measuring 53 inches in width, 49 inches in height, and 27 inches in depth.
It also weighs in at 136 pounds, making it easy to move around for those with limited outdoor space. Its small size and manageable weight make it a great choice for those with limited outdoor space such as small decks or patios.
The Pro 34 offers a wide temperature range, reaching between 160° F and 450° F. This range allows for a variety of cooking options, from low and slow smoking to high-heat grilling. Also, the temperature control is precise with the Traeger being able to maintain the desired temperature within a range of 5 to 10°.
Hot Spots and Cold Spots
While the Pro 34 is known for its precise temperature control, it may experience some hot and cold spots on the grill.
To ensure even cooking, it is recommended to rotate your meat occasionally to account for these hotspots. This is a common issue among most smokers, and as long as you’re aware of them, it’s easy to work around.
The Best Entry-Level Smoker
The Pro 34 is considered as the best entry-level smoker due to its user-friendly features and versatility. It can smoke large cuts of meats such as brisket, ribs, and pork butt, as well as quick-cooking options like sausages and burgers.
Its ‘set-and-forget’ capabilities make it perfect for beginner smokers who are just starting to learn the art of smoking meat.
Pellet Hopper Capacity
The Pro 34 has an 18 lbs pellet hopper, which is enough to cook for about 18 hours. As a general rule of thumb, burn through about 1.5 lb of wood pellets per hour if you are smoking in the 225⁰F to 250° F range. Obviously, this will vary depending on the outside temperature and the cooking temp.
The next model up has a 20 lbs hopper, while the top model has a 24 lbs hopper. The Ironwood and the Timberline also have pellet hopper sensors so you can monitor the level of wood pellets.
This allows you to receive a notification via the App Pro 575 also has this function, but you have to buy the sensor separately.
The Pro 34 has a temperature probe that sticks up like an antenna. The Gen 2 Pro Series has a smaller thermometer that’s tucked away. The Pro 34 ships with two meat probes. The newer Pro Series only ship with one probe.
Two probes are useful when you are smoking two roasts, especially different roasts such as one pork but in a brisket. However, I would still recommend using your own meat thermometer. Built-in thermometers that come with my grills are usually inaccurate.
Factory thermometers in Traeger grills, like many other manufacturers, may not always be accurate. There are a few reasons for this. One is that the thermometer may be located in a spot on the grill that does not accurately reflect the temperature throughout the cooking chamber.
Also, the thermometer may not be calibrated correctly from the factory, or it may drift over time, leading to inaccurate readings. This can lead to overcooking or undercooking your food, which can affect its taste and quality. To learn how to calibrate a thermometer, check out this article: “How to Calibrate a Thermometer”
One way to ensure more accurate temperature control is to use an external thermometer, such as a digital thermometer with a probe, which can be inserted into the meat to measure its internal temperature.
This is a more reliable way to ensure the meat is cooked to the desired temperature. Some of the best thermometers have multiple probes and a remote reading, which allow you to monitor temperature even if you are away from the grill. Check out my Thermometer Guide.
Another option is to use a temperature controller, which can take over the temperature control of the grill and regulate the temperature based on your desired setting.
This can be a great option for those who are serious about smoking meat and want to ensure accurate temperature control.
There are different controllers available in the market and some of the most popular among Traeger enthusiasts are the CyberQ Cloud, Flame Boss, and Smoke Daddy controllers. Check out my article on temperature controllers for more information.
The Pro 34 vs Pro 22
- Pro 34 has 312 sq in more cooking area than Pro 22
- Equates to 16 extra burgers, 2 extra rib racks, or 4 extra chickens
- Pro 34 is 9 in wider than Pro 22, size of 2 iPhones
- Price difference is about $100
- Good option for entertaining occasionally
When compared to the smaller Pro 22, the Pro 34 has 312 square inches more extra cooking area. This equates to 16 extra burgers, or two more rib racks, or four extra whole chickens.
Considering the price difference is only about $100, it’s a lot of extra food. Keep this in mind if you like to entertain even once or twice a year. A smaller grill may suit you the most of the year, but it’s nice to have the option of cooking for a larger crowd.
The Pro 34 is 9 inches wider than the smaller model, the Pro 22. This isn’t a tremendous difference, probably about the size of two iPhones.
How Does A Traeger Work?
- Pellet grill uses wood pellets as fuel
- Hopper feeds pellets into burn pot
- Burn pot has heating element and fan
- Temperature control system regulates heat and smoke
- Venting system allows user to control smoke level
- Produces heat and smoke for cooking food
The Pro 22 is a pellet grill, so wood pellets are the major source of heat and flavor. Most pellet grills have the same components.
There’s a pellet hopper to hold the wood pellets; an auger to feed the pellets into the fire pots; a hot rod to ignite the wood in the firepot, and a fan to circulate the heat throughout the smoker. Pellet grills also need a chimney (smokestack) to eliminate smoke.
Pellet grills also require electricity to power the motor. The motor powers the fan and the auger to feed pellets into the fire pot. Pellet grills should be kept out of the weather because there are electrical components.
Are Traeger’s the Best Pellet Grills on the Market?
Traeger was the original pellet grill. However, just because Traeger’s were the original pellet grills make them the best. Other companies have produced better quality grills, but Traeger remains the most popular.
That’s not to say Traeger’s aren’t any good. Traeger grills are affordable, and they have different levels of quality for all customers. The Traeger Timberline is a high-quality grill that could compete with the best on the market.
The Pro Series are entry-level grills, perfect for the beginner to the advanced. Traeger caters to all budgets and all needs. They have pellet grills for people with a small balcony or a small budget.
They have thick insulated grills for people who live in the snow. And they have portable grills for those who like to cook on the road. Plus, they have a grill for everything in between.
Every Traeger Model
There are a few Traeger models in a similar price range and size to the Pro 34. I’ll give you an overview below.
|Ranger||Portable, basic features, affordable|
|Tailgater||Portable, basic features, affordable|
|Pro 22||Small grill, entry-level with basic functions, affordable|
|Pro 34||Medium grill, entry-level with basic functions, affordable|
|Pro 575||Small grill, high-tech, some extra features, affordable|
|Pro 780||Medium grill, high-tech, some extra features, affordable|
|Ironwood 650||Medium to Large grill, high-tech, extra features, expensive|
|Ironwood 885||Large grill, high-tech, extra features, expensive|
|Timberline 850||Large grill, high-tech, loads of extra features, very expensive|
|Timberline 1300||XL grill, top-of-the-line model, very expensive|
|Timberline ( 2nd Gen )||Large grill, top-of-the-line model, very expensive|
|Timberline XL||The largest Traeger grill, and the most expensive|
Pro 34 Downgrades
The next size down from the Pro 34 is the Pro 22. Down from there are the portable models like the Tailgater and the Ranger. However, I wouldn’t recommend those models unless you specifically want a transportable grill. If you want something a little smaller and cheaper, the Pro 22 is the best choice.
Pro 22 vs Pro 34
- The two Gen 1 Pro Series grills are virtually the same except for price, size, weight and cooking capacity.
- The Pro 22 has 572 square inches of cooking area whereas the Pro 34 has 884 square inches of cooking area.
- The Pro 22 can cook 24 burgers, whereas the Pro 34 can cook 40 burgers.
- The Pro 22 can cook 5 racks of ribs, and the Pro 34 can cook seven racks of ribs.
- The Pro 22 has enough cooking area to smoke for whole chickens, compared to the Pro 34 which can cook eight whole chickens.
- The Pro 22 weighs 103 lb, whereas the Pro 34 weighs 136 lb.
- The Pro 22 is 41 inches wide, compared to the larger Pro 34, which is 53 in wide. So the pro 34 is 12 in wider than the smaller Pro 22.
- Pro 22 is 49 inches high, which is the same as the Pro 34, which is also 49 inches high.
- The Pro 34 is $100 more than the Pro 22. Check the latest price here.
- The Pro 22 and the Pro 34 are 27 inches deep.
- The Pro 34 and the 22 have dual meat probes.
Gen 2 Pro Series
If you want more technology, then the newer Gen 2 Pro Series models include the Pro 575 and Pro 780. These models have Wi-Fi integrated and are packed full of additional features.
What’s the difference between the Pro 34 and the Pro 780?
The Pro 780 is the upgraded version of the Pro 34. Traeger has made several upgrades to the large Pro Series model.
- Barrel Size
One of the noticeable differences between the Gen 1 Pro 34 and the newer Pro 780 is the different sized barrel. The Pro 34 has a wider barrel, so it has more length. The newer Pro 780 has a taller barrel, more oval shaped, which gives you more vertical cooking space.
When you look at the Pro 34 and the Pro 575 on paper, you’ll notice the Pro 34 has more cooking area. However, the Pro 575 has more vertical cooking area — at least 12 inches. This is vertical space is useful when you’re cooking turkeys and beer can chicken, etc.
The Pro 780 has incorporated Wi-Fi technology into the grill, meaning you can control the temperature from your smartphone. You can adjust manually with the regular digital controller on the Pro 34.
The Pro 780 also has a regular digital controller which will allow you to bypass the Wi-Fi if you’re not interested in using technology when barbecuing.
Wi-Fi thermometers have been on the market for several years. The Tappecue, and the Fireboard, for example, really changed the game by allowing you to monitor your grill from your mobile phone.
Traeger has taken this technology one step further by actually integrating it into the grill. So not only can you monitor the temperature, you can also change it at the push of a button.
- The App
The Pro 780 gives you access to the Traeger App, which will allow you to control your grill through the App. This also gives you access to Traeger’s Grill Guide—which has hundreds of recipes that you can download directly onto your grill. The App has some handy features, but there’s also a lot of promotional information.
- A Better Motor
The Pro 780, along with all Traeger’s newer models, uses the D2 Drivetrain motor—a more powerful and better quality motor.
The motor is an important component of the pellet grill, because it powers the auger and the fan. Since the Pro 780 has a more powerful motor, it can perform some advanced features like TurboTemp.
- Turbo Temp
The Pro 780 has a function called turbo temp, which allows the grill to come up to temperature much faster, and recover after opening the lid. This is a huge difference between the Pro 34 and Pro 780.
The standard Pro 34 takes more time to heat, whereas the Pro 780 can come up to the target temperature faster.
Heat escapes when you open the lid to your grill. This can destabilize the temperature of your grill.
The Pro 780 has TurboTemp, which will allow you to recover your target temperature after opening the lid. The powerful motor will feed through more pellets, and increase the fan temperature, before stabilizing once again.
The Ironwood And Timberline
- The next model up from the Pro series is the Ironwood and the Timberline.
- Even though there’s quite a few differences between the Gen 1 Pro Series and the Gen 2, there are much bigger upgrades to the Ironwood and the Timberline.
- The most significant upgrade is the level of insulation. The thickness of the metal is one of the most important features of a quality pellet grill. Cheap smokers have thin metal, which means the temperatures will fluctuate because the smoker will struggle to retain heat.
- A well-insulated pellet grill like the Ironwood and the Timberline series will keep heat much better. That means you have more stable temperatures, and burn through fewer pellets.
- The Ironwood has double- walled insulation, and the Timberline is fully insulated.
- The price difference between the Pro 34 is substantial. Expect to pay between $2,000 to $3000 for a fully insulated pellet grill like the Timberline.
Pro 34 vs Pro 780
Which is Better: Traeger Pro 34 vs Traeger Pro 780
|Specs||Traeger Pro 34||Traeger Pro 780|
|Manufacturer||Traeger Pellet Grills||Traeger Pellet Grills|
|Price (US)||$508.22 grill only$869.85 grill + shelf + cover$719.90 grill + pellets||$999.99|
|Weight||136 lbs||173 lbs|
|Dimension (DxHxW)||27″ x 49″ x 53″||48.7” x 26.7” x 54.4”|
|Grill Capacity||7 rib racks or 8 chicken or 40 burgers||6 rib racks or 6 chickens or 34 burgers|
|Grilling area||884 sq. in.||780 sq. in.|
|Hopper Capacity||18 lb||18 lb|
|Technology||Downdraft exhaust system & double side wall insulation||WiFIRE network connects your barbecue to your house WiFi, and even the Traeger application lets you manage it from anywhere.|
|Special Features||● Precision Temp control● Beginner friendly● Easy to assemble||● Built for Large Family● Cleaning the grill porcelain grates is a breeze.● Easy to operate|
|Connectivity||Digital Pro Controller||WiFi Smart Home Technology|
|Power source||100% All-natural Wood pellet||100% All-natural Wood pellet|
|Inner Material||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel|
|Wheels||All-terrain wheels||All-terrain wheels|
|Features||Traeger Pro 34||Traeger Pro 780|
|Temperature Control||Advanced Grilling Logic Technology||Advanced Grilling Logic Technology|
|Max Temperature||450 °F||500 °F|
|Cooking Methods||6 in 1 versatility cooking (smoke, bake, roast, bbq, braise and bake)||6 in 1 versatility cooking (smoke, bake, roast, bbq, braise and bake)|
|Food production||12 to 20 people||13-18 people|
|Double Side Wall Insulation||Yes||Yes|
|Downdraft Exhaust System||Yes||No|
|Standard Size||Extra large||Large sized|
|All Terrain Wheels||Yes||Yes|
|Digital Pro Controller||Yes||Yes|
|Locking Caster Wheels||No||Yes|
Every Traeger Model Compared
|Grill Space||1343 Sq.In||885 Sq.In||780 Sq.In|
|Size||58 W x 51 H |
x 28 D
|53 W x 47 H |
x 27 D
|49 W x 55 H |
x 27 D
|Weight||255 lbs||170 lbs||145 lbs|
|500 F°||500 F°||500 F°|
|Extra Insulation||Double-Wall, Hood and Back Interior||Double Side-Wall Interior||No|
|Bottom Sear Grate||Yes||Yes||No|
|Grill Grates||Stainless Steel||Porcelain Coated Steel||Porcelain Coated Steel|
|Meat Probe Storage Box||Yes||Yes||No|
|Magnetic Bamboo Cutting Board||Yes||No||No|
|Keep Warm Mode||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Super Smoke Mode||Yes||Yes||No|
|TRU Convection System||Yes||Yes||No|
|Concealed Grease Pan||Yes||No||No|
|DC Brushless Motor||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Variable Fan Speed||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Power Cord Hook||Yes||Yes||No|
The Traeger Pro 34 is a solid choice for those looking for an entry-level pellet grill. It offers a good amount of cooking space at 884 square inches, making it suitable for smoking or grilling large cuts of meat.
The design is simple and straightforward, making it easy for beginners to use. Its compact size and manageable weight make it an ideal fit for those with limited outdoor space.
The temperature control is precise, with a range between 160° F and 450° F, allowing for a variety of cooking options. While some users might experience hot and cold spots on the grill, it’s an issue that can be easily worked around by rotating meat occasionally for even cooking.
The Pro 34 is also known for its set-and-forget capabilities, which make it a great option for those new to smoking meat. It also comes with 2 meat probes and 18 lbs pellet hopper capacity.
In sum, the Pro 34 is a reliable and easy-to-use pellet grill that offers plenty of cooking space and precise temperature control. It’s a great option for beginners who are looking to get into smoking meat, and its compact size and manageable weight make it an ideal fit for those with limited outdoor space.
If you’re on a budget and looking for a solid entry-level pellet grill, the Traeger Pro 34 is worth considering.