How Long Do Pellets Last in Traeger? A Comprehensive Guide

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Are you new to the world of pellet grilling, or are you a seasoned pro? Either way, one question that often comes up is how long your pellets will last in your Traeger grill. After all, you don’t want to run out of fuel in the middle of cooking your favorite meal. So, in this article, we’ll dive into the details of how long pellets last in Traeger grills to help you plan your cookouts with confidence.

Understanding Pellets and Traeger Grills

Traeger grills use wood pellets as fuel to cook your food. These pellets are made from compressed sawdust, and they come in a variety of flavors, such as hickory, mesquite, apple, and cherry. The pellets are loaded into a hopper, which feeds them into the firepot, where they are ignited by a heating element. As the pellets burn, they create smoke and heat, which cook your food.

The amount of pellets you use and how long they last depend on several factors, including the size and model of your Traeger grill, the temperature you’re cooking at, and the type of food you’re cooking.

Traeger Grill Size and Model

Traeger grills come in various sizes, from portable Tailgater models to large commercial grills. As you might expect, the larger the grill, the more pellets it will use. However, even within the same model line, you may notice differences in pellet consumption due to variations in insulation and other design factors.

Cooking Temperature

The temperature you cook at also affects pellet consumption. High-temperature cooking, such as searing, will use more pellets than low and slow cooking. As a general rule, the higher the temperature, the more pellets you’ll go through.

Type of Food

Finally, the type of food you’re cooking can also impact pellet consumption. Some meats, such as brisket or pork shoulder, take many hours to cook, which means more pellets will be used. Conversely, shorter cooks, such as grilling burgers or chicken breasts, will require fewer pellets.

How Long Do Pellets Last in Traeger Grills?

So, with those factors in mind, how long can you expect your pellets to last in a Traeger grill? Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to that question, but we can provide some general guidance.

On average, a Traeger grill will use around 1 to 3 pounds of pellets per hour, depending on the factors we discussed earlier. That means that a 20-pound bag of pellets can last anywhere from 6 to 20 hours, depending on how you’re using your grill.

What if My Pellets Run Out Mid-Cook?

If you run out of pellets mid-cook, don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world. You can simply add more pellets to the hopper, and your grill will pick up where it left off. However, depending on how long the grill was without fuel, you may experience some temperature fluctuations in the cooking chamber. To avoid this, try to keep an eye on your pellet level and refill as needed.


In conclusion, how long your pellets last in a Traeger grill depends on several factors, including the size and model of your grill, the temperature you’re cooking at, and the type of food you’re cooking. On average, you can expect a 20-pound bag of pellets to last anywhere from 6 to 20 hours. However, don’t stress too much about running out of pellets mid-cook. Simply add more pellets to the hopper and keep on cooking.


Are There Any Tips to Make My Pellets Last Longer?

Yes, there are a few tips you can follow to make your pellets last longer:

– Clean your grill regularly to remove ash buildup, which can interfere with air circulation and cause the pellets to burn less efficiently.
– Use high-quality pellets, which are made from 100% hardwood and contain fewer fillers.
– Use the “Smoke” setting on your Traeger grill, which uses fewer pellets but still provides plenty of smoky flavor.
– Preheat your grill before adding your food. This reduces the amount of time the grill needs to reach your desired temperature, which means it will use fewer pellets.

What Happens If I Leave My Pellets in the Hopper for Too Long?

If you leave your pellets in the hopper for an extended period, they can absorb moisture from the air. This can cause them to swell and clump together, which can clog the auger that feeds them into the firepot. To avoid this, store your pellets in a dry, covered area, ideally in an airtight container.

Can I Use Other Brands of Pellets in My Traeger Grill?

While Traeger grills are designed to work best with Traeger pellets, you can use other brands of pellets, as long as they are the same size and made from 100% hardwood. However, using other brands may void your Traeger grill’s warranty.

Can I Use My Traeger Grill in Cold Weather?

Yes, you can use your Traeger grill in cold weather, but be aware that colder temperatures can cause pellet consumption to increase. You may need to use more pellets or adjust your cooking times accordingly. Additionally, if your grill is not properly insulated, you may experience difficulty maintaining consistent cooking temperatures. Consider using a thermal blanket or moving your grill to a more sheltered location to mitigate the effects of cold weather.


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