Hasty Bake Grill Review

I did a project for Hasty Bake in 2021. I do a handful of these a year for different grill brands and normally I do the cook, collect my content and then find a new home for the grill because I just don’t have the room on my deck for one more grill. More than a year later this grill is still on my deck. I just can’t quit this cooker. Why is that? Stay tuned for my Hasty Bake Grill Review. 

Hasty Bake Grill Review

What’s so great about it?

First off, to clarify, this is a Hasty Bake Legacy 131 which is their most popular model. So what is so great about it? Not the outside design. It’s just a big black box with a stainless steel shelf on the front and this handle on the side that looks like it was added at random:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

I mean, there isn’t even a vent in the lid of the Legacy 131. Don’t get me started on that weird rounded arm only on one side. And let’s not talk about the name. I’m not the Bakin’ Fool and certainly not the Hasty Bakin’ Fool. I’m the Grillin’ Fool!

So what is so great about it? That lack of vent in the lid is a huge part of what makes the Hasty Bake so great. The lid seals tight so no smoke leaks out where the lid meets the body of the grill.  The smoke comes up from the fire, hits the underside of the lid and has to go back down and out the vents on either side of the body of the grill:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

It’s almost like a vortex happens. The smoke goes up and past the meat and then back down over the protein a second time. And that vortex seems to get my food cooked more quickly which may be where the ‘Hasty’ part of Hasty Bake comes from.

Bend it like Beckham?

And those racks? Heavy. Well-made heavy. You can tell a lot about a grill by simply lifting the grill grates. They are also angled slightly down in the middle:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Grease/fat travels to the middle bar running perpendicular to the grates and drips into this little metal channel (that is also removable for quick, high heat cooks):

Hasty Bake Grill Review

And then the grease is deposited into a disposable grease pan:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

***Pro tip ~ Add a wad of paper towels into the grease pan before each cook. When done grilling, remove the paper towels (after the grease cools) and wipe out the pan to extend the life of the pan.

The grease channel doesn’t get all of the grease, but it gets a ton of it. And grease is an enemy of your grill. It sticks to metal and holds moisture in place which leads to rust. This little genius feature helps to keep your grill in great shape far longer than standard grills. More on that in a minute.

Never Out of Control

Remember that weird handle on the side? Did I mention that handle is total control? It doesn’t mean your teenager will stop talking back or your boss will stop micromanaging. It’s not that kind of control. It means you have total control over your grill temps.  It allows the Hasty Bake to go from smoke to bake to sear or any combo of those:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Want just a tiny bit more heat? Take that handle around the horn one time. Need less heat so the food stays hot while the sides cook? Crank that fire down to the lowest level. Need to put some wicked grill marks on a steak? Crank it all the way up! Need a cast iron pan screaming hot to get that coast to coast brown on a steak, the Hasty Bake has got your back:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Editor’s Note ~ That steak above is a blackened steak that was reversed seared. Click here for the full recipe

Need to brown the cheese on the top of a pizza, after you crank the coals all the way up, shake the tray to lose the loose ash and set the pizza under that coal broiler and brown away!

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Rotate the pizza as one side browns.

Easy to Refuel

I almost forgot to mention that this same door is where one adds charcoal to the fire. The door is HUGE. Pretty much about 90% of the entire side of the body. What that equates to is maybe the easiest grill on the market to add charcoal (or smoke wood) to the fire. Some grills require removing the hot grill grate (including the hot food on top), then removing the hotter heat deflector in order to get down to the coals AND THEN putting all of that hot stuff back in without tipping the grate more than a few degrees and sending the protein skittering across the deck. I hope you get to that protein before Fido does! We’re not talking about a little door that the charcoal has to be pushed through grasped in the tips of some tongs which only holds about 4 chunks of lump or maybe 5 briquettes. With the Hasty Bake I drop the coals all the way down to low and then pour directly from the bag and refuel my fire in moments with little mess. 

That weird rounded arm off the side is actually the steering device. I can wheel this grill around my deck with one hand quite easily. And since it sits in the middle of my deck so I can film on some other grill, I have to move it a lot, although never when the chimney inside is lit:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Warm it up

Did I mention that the flat top makes a GREAT warming station. I can throw a pork shoulder in an aluminum pan topped with foil and set it right on the Legacy 131 to keep that pork warm. And with the size of the grill, I could probably do 6 pans. Or just a platter with a few slabs of ribs. The grills warms the platter which transfers that heat to the ribs:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

Plenty of Room

One of my favorite features is the cooking square footage. If I rotated these ribs 90 degrees I could put another 2 or 3 slabs on the grill:

Hasty Bake Grill Review

I can do a TON on the grill indirect thanks to a deflector in the bottom that shields the meat from the direct heat like a kamado, allowing me to indirect grill the entire chamber. Or I can put coals on one side and the meat on the other and do a reverse sear without having to take the meat, hot grill grate and hotter deflector out which is a huge negative for a lot of kamados:

Or I can layer the entire fire tray with coals, leave the deflector tray next to the grill and cook burgers, brats or dogs for a huge crowd (think Memorial Day, Father’s Day, 4th of July and Labor Day). Or in this case a bunch of chicken thighs:

Yeah those thighs look good!

Sum it up

The Hasty Bake is a like a tank – short, squat and built to take a beating. This beast has been sitting outside on my deck with no cover for over 2 years and it looks brand new. I’ll lay it out how serious I am about the Legacy 131. I’ll buy a new house with a bigger deck before I will get rid of this Hasty Bake grill to make room for something else.

Here are the recipes we’ve done on the Hasty-Bake

Hasty Bake did not compensate me for a review of the grill. After a year of cooking on it, and a ton of pics taken, I figured the write up of the review was the easiest part. 

Scott Thomas

Scott Thomas

Scott Thomas, the Original Grillin’ Fool, was sent off to college with a suitcase and a grill where he overcooked, undercooked and burned every piece of meat he could find. After thousands of failures, and quite a few successes, nearly two decades later he started a website to show step by step, picture by picture, foolproof instructions on how to make great things out of doors so that others don’t have to repeat the mistakes he’s made on the grill.
Scott Thomas

Latest posts by Scott Thomas (see all)

3 comments

Nice review, I think the point about the ventless hood is important and not mentioned a lot. My only concerns with the HB are the height of 30” at the grate is not ideal for me, and the charcoal tray seemed wobbly, but it makes great stuff. Only other grill I am considering is the Weber Summit Charcoal. Thoughts?

Reply

Gary,

I would say the question between these two is gas or charcoal. I prefer charcoal, but that’s just me.

I “inherited” a small Hasty Bake that was in use every Saturday when I met my late husband in 1967. After my in-laws passed away, we got it and it has been used quite frequently since then. I’ve painted it and a pan has been placed in the bottom, but it’s definitely still the “go to” grill.

Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *