The quintessential American BBQ, this is the cooker you find most commonly in backyards across the country, and with good reason. It may not look fancy, but the kettle can do it all, and quite well. It features a large cooking area that’s well suited to both high-heat barbecueing over direct heat as well as barbecue roasting over indirect heat. They also typically have a dome-shaped lid with vents, which means they can be used for smoking BBQ specialties like brisket. When buying a kettle, look for sturdy construction, a convenient mechanism for capturing ash and easy-to-use vents on the lid as well as the bottom of the kettle.