RECTEQ Bull RT-700 Pellet Grill Review
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RECTEQ grills (specifically the “Bull”) is a game changer where pellet grills are concerned. I’ve had mine for more than a year now and I can tell you that it is everything they say it is and more. There’s a reason why this thing gets such awesome reviews.
If you already know you want this thing (great choice) then you can check the latest price and/or find out more information here.
The Delivery of the RECTEQ Grill
Mine was delivered by a freight truck and the huge box was strapped down to a pallet. I also received several bags of pellets, a stainless steel shelf for the front and a heavy duty cover to protect it from the elements when not in use.
Assembling the RECTEQ
It took me a while to get everything unboxed but then I was working alone that day and in spite of the instructions telling me it was best to have (2) people to assemble it, I was able to do it by myself using some of my engineering skills to lift the body of the smoker up onto the frame.
I do recommend having a buddy helping if possible.
As I took each piece out of the box I immediately noticed the quality of the materials used to manufacture this unit. I was also impressed that all of the seams inside the smoke chamber were sealed with some sort of heavy grade caulk or sealant. I assume this is to prevent heat loss and leaking. Very impressive.
It took me a couple of hours to install the chimney, front bull horn handles, controller, and legs and hoist it to an upright position– of course I was stopping a lot to take pictures of the process.
But when it was finished, it was a beautiful sight to behold!
The Main Features of this REC TEQ Pellet Grill
The BIG Pellet Hopper
This thing is on the very back of the unit and it’s huge! It holds 40 lbs of pellets which means you’ll not need to fill it up very often and you can run it for a day and a half without adding more fuel.
The hopper being on the back allows for a shorter distance to move the pellets from the hopper to the burn pot.
The stainless steel lid on the hopper makes a great place to sit foil pans to keep the food warm as well.
The Cooking Chamber
All stainless steel, sealed seams and extremely heavy duty says it all. At approximately 36 inches wide and 20 inches front to back, the cooking area is more than enough to cook for a large crowd. That’s around 700 sq. in. of cooking space.
The ¼ inch stainless steel rod cooking grates are very heavy duty as well and makes them easy to keep clean. The fact that they are split into (2) pieces means they will fit into most dishwashers if you really want to get them cleaned up.
An interior light with a on/off switch on the controller makes it easy to see what you are cooking at night and the heavy duty glass cover over the bulb is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
The Burn Pot and Ignitor
The burn pot is stainless steel like much of the rest of the smoker so it’s very heavy duty and built to last. The ignitor is made of ceramic unlike most other ignitors on other brands of pellet smokers which are made of steel. The ceramic ignitor is the longest lasting ignition system for pellet smokers on the market.
This is where a lot of people are going to get very excited. Most pellet smokers maintain a heat range and while this works just fine, it is a source of contention for many.
RECTEQ decided to do what no one else had done up to this time and make it hold an absolute exact temperature.
The controller is a very fancy computer controlled one that not only holds an absolutely precise temperature, but it also connects to the Wi-Fi in your home and allows you to monitor and control the smoker right on your smart phone from anywhere.
As if that’s not enough, the controller has inputs for not one but two probes (included) so you can also monitor the temperature of what you are cooking x 2.
A short while back, I placed a ham in the RECTEQ smoker before I left for church on Sunday morning and one hour later, I turned it on, set the temperature and monitored it (very discreetly of course) via my smart phone so it would be ready right when we got home. Worked like a charm!
Smoke Production and Flavor
It is a known fact that some pellet smokers give a much lighter smoke flavor than most other smokers and this often leaves users wanting a little more.
The RECTEQ smoker uses an algorithm to pulse the fan on and off at lower temperatures in order to produce maximum smoke. In a blind taste test you’d be hard pressed to tell the difference between food that is cooked on a RECTEQ and any other wood or charcoal smoker.
As with most pellet smokers, the lower the heat, the more smoke you get however I have found that I get better smoke with the RECTEQ at any setting between 180 and 250°F than I get on ANY OTHER pellet smoker.
The Smart Phone App
I normally don’t mention the app but the one for RECTEQ is especially well made and they just updated a while back so it’s even better. More than anything, it’s easy to use, large numbers so it’s easy to see and the graphing that it does automatically for your cooks is second to none.
You can name your RECTEQ anything you like– mine is “The Bull” and you can monitor and control your “Bull” from a single screen with no need to switch back and forth unless you are doing something a little more technical like adjusting the feed rate.
What I liked about the RECTEQ Bull
In case you can’t tell, I really love this pellet smoker. Like most other pellet smokers, when you are cooking on this unit, you are cooking and smoking with 100% real wood and nothing else. It’s a wood smoker and I love that!
The smoker looks absolutely awesome especially with all of the stainless steel contrasted with that shiny black lid and the stainless steel emblem, towel hook and bull horns on the front.
- Its ability to hold a perfect temperature. This is a complaint I hear from folks that use pellet smokers, even thought most indoor ovens cycle up and down, they aren’t aware of this since it only shows the set temperature. On pellet smokers, they show the actual temperature and it just bothers folks to know that the temperature is not always where it should be. RECTEQ saw this problem and fixed it. Kudos!
- The HUGE pellet hopper! As I mentioned earlier, it holds 40 lbs and if you’re cooking at normal temperatures of around 225 °F, that’s enough to last you about a day and a half of cooking.
- All of the stainless steel and the horns. Stainless is a good thing to have in a pellet smoker or grill since it doesn’t corrode quickly like normal steel. Plus it looks really nice. The horns make great handles and a good conversation starter as well.
- The controller and app and the ability to operate it even when I’m not home. The RECTEQ Bull has bluetooth/wi-fi built in and the app is super easy to use. It’s nice being able to control the smoker from wherever I am in the world.
- The Flavor. Ultimately, it’s about flavor and this RECTEQ grill puts out some of the best food you’ve ever tasted due to it’s better than average smoke production where pellet grills are concerned.
- The customer service presence is amazing! When I first opened the box, I was immediately met with an envelope that had the contact information for the president and other top people in the company. RECTEQ owners will tell you that this is the case for every grill they ship out and I think that is the first step in great customer service and letting customers feel at ease about their purchase.
What I Didn’t Like
There’s a few features that I am very used to having on other pellet smokers. A few of these features include:
- External Ash Cleanout. While this is’t common, I use the Camp Chef Woodwind a lot as well and I’ve gotten used to being able to dump the ashes in about 5 seconds. On the RECTEQ as with most other pellet smokers, this requires removing everything from the inside (grates, drip pan, heat deflector, etc.).
- Pellet Dump System. If you want to change out pellets, you have to dip them out with your hand, solo cup, etc. since there is no chute you can open and let them just quickly empty into a bucket. This is not a deal breaker by any means but when you’re used to having this, it’s disappointing to not have it available.
- Dual level grates. There’s plenty of room in the RECTEQ for a 2nd shelf/grate but it’s just not there.
But even without those missing “nice to have” features, the sheer quality of this smoker, its’ ability to hold an absolute precise set temperature and the ability to control it so easily makes it well worth the price in my opinion.
I have used it long enough to be able to trust it and it is quite common for me to load the thing up with pork butts, briskets, etc and go to bed knowing that I don’t have to worry about a thing. It’s going to hold the temperature I set until the cows come home or it runs out of pellets.
Let me know in the comments below if you have this smoker and what you like or dislike about it. This helps other potential buyers make an informed decision when it comes to their next smoker purchase.
You can learn more and see the latest price at https://smoking-meat.com/bull.
I have had my 700 four 4 months, I cannot see how they can call this thing a smoker. I’ve tried low heat and I cannot tell it has any smoke flavor in the turkey or pork butt. My wife said a little smoke flavor but not much. Glad I have not got rid of my charcoal/wood smoker.Extremely disappointed.
I have stuck with my good old traditional Lone Star Grilz smoker for so long because we do steaks probably 5X as much as actually smoking a brisket or pork butt. I have heard this does a good job of getting that hard sear on a steak that my wife loves. That is the one thing that made me decide not to go with a pellet grill.
How does this work on steaks? As a fellow Okie no living in DFW I am trusting you to not bullshit me😊
I love my current grill. It works great but is labor intensive. As I get older the idea of set and forget a brisket for a 12-15 hour cook sounds better and better,
Rocky, I only ever tell things the way they are. So you’re in good company!
The recteq is a good pellet smoker, one of the best along with the Woodwind by Camp Chef but it does not sear steaks well in my opinion. It smokes steaks really well and then I use a flat top griddle to get a good sear on them.
The Camp Chef Woodwind has an optional side griddle that can get about as hot as you need for searing steaks.. I usually put it on a good medium heat and it gets up to around 500°F (260°C) which gives me excellent sears after the steaks are done smoking.
Some folks use a grill grate in their pellet smokers which sits on the smoker grate and it does a pretty good job of searing lines on to the steaks but I personally prefer an all over sear rather than just grill marks.
How are you using the Lone Star Grillz smoker for your steaks? My LSG has a flat top griddle right over the firebox that I use to sear the steaks after they are smoked.. is that what you are doing as well?
The recteq does heat up a little hotter than most pellet grills.. I can get mine all the way to 600°F while most pellet smokers top out at 450-500°F.
Thanks for the review. I have the 700 as well and i love to grill
Thanks for the review. I have the 700 as well and I love this smoker.
LOVE MY RT 700… JUST ORDERED THE RT-B380 FOR THE SMALLER COOKS, DOG’S, BURGER’S, STEAK’S, BEER CAN CHICKEN, ETC, ETC
RT MAKES AWSOME PRODUCT’S WITHOUT QUESTION, WELL WORTH THE COST
Jeff, I love your website and recipes! You are my go to guy on smoking and a fellow Okie too. I recently bought a RT-700 and while still adjusting to a pellet burner after wearing out 3 vertical electric smokers I am pleased with my purchase. Without a waterpan I quickly learned how to spritz. My biggest complaint is the thing is so dang pretty I hate to see it dirty and spend an inordinate amount of time cleaning the thing. For its weight tho it has weak wheels which I immediately replaced with ultra heavy duty ones since I move mine 100′ everytime I use it.
the recteq 590 and Grilla grills Silverback are my 2 choices to replace my 5 year old masterbuilt. have you used or reviewed the Silverback? have purchased your recipes, and use the all the time. but don’t add the brown sugar until ready to apply. would appreciate your thoughts on my 2 finalists.
I have had my RT700 for two years now. One of the best investments I ever made. I have been pellet smoking for almost 10 years, with the Bull replacing a Sawtooth Pellet Grill. While the Sawtooth was a great start to pellet smoking, the hopper was small, and maintaining the temp was not easy… even after switching out the controller to their newer PID. The difference in build quality when the Bull arrived was immediately recognized, and I have never regretted the buying decision. That sucker has smoked plenty of butts, ribs, turkeys, and a brisket over the past two years with nary a complaint from those eating the food. Cook sausages, hotdogs, hamburgers, chicken, and steak with no complaints either. The GrillGrates that came with it give me all the sear and crispiness I desire.
I don’t like the cover, and rarely use it. It is so tight fitting it becomes a struggle to get it on and off the Bull. Part of me does wish there was a pellet dump, but considering I rarely ever change pellet varieties, it is not super high on the wish list. Thought I would want the ash dump that comes on Camp Chefs but quickly embraced the Recteq mantra of scooping the ashes from the burn pot and dumping in the bottom of the barrel for added insulation.
I have the BFG2500 and could not be happier with the product and the customer service. Both are second to none! Ordering a RT700 to go with the 2500. Couldn’t be more excited. Having way to much fun!
I have had two RT680’S for over 4 years ( previous model to the RT700) and zero issues. I use to have to baby sit stick burners overnight. Not anymore! I could not be happier. The food thats comes off is awesome.
Had a rectec for years the 680 like a tank and precise. Best thing is rectec customer service…. absolutely unmatched!
I also have the rt700 bull, named mine the baby bull….. I told my wife when they called and said the truck was on the way with it, the stork is delivering my baby, my first smoke was with your recipe with baby back ribs the 3-2-1 method and when I put it in the foil for the 2nd part I add a stick of butter and a little honey until I ran out then more maple syrup , my granddaughter loved them, I am going to try you 2-2-1 with coffee brine next. oh and the rt700 is built like bull dozier, its every thing you said. did I mention it has a 6 year warranty.i also got the sear grates
I have the 700 as well and agree with everything you have said. It is high quality, easy smoking, and pretty diverse when you get the hang of it. I feel guilty though, it’s almost too eas!
I have the RT-590,not quite as big as the 700 but built just as well. The convenience of not having to be by the smoker all the time to check temp of smoker and meat is great. The PID controller keeps the temp within a couple degrees of the setting.The Wi-Fi works good. I would recommend this smoker to anybody that is serious about smoking.
Jeff – I have owned a Rec Tec 680 for about 4 years and love it. The quality and heavy materials makes it what it is. No longer needing to tend to the smoker makes it a winner for me.
Thanks for the review. I have the 700 as well and I love this smoker. It allows you to socialize with your family and friends and not have to tend to the smoker the whole time that you are cooking. Provides plenty of smoke flavor for my family and I.
I also have the RT 700 I got the cold smoker box on the side it makes great smoked cheese. I did a great prime rib 18 1/2 lb. with herb crust that was to die for. mixing ground pork and beef 50/50 and smoking at 275 makes the best burgers I have ever made I have been grilling for over 40 years and have been to weber class and been doing demos selling grills but nothing like the rec tec its great
No commented on the Rec-Tec (bought a Smoke Hollow 38″ gas a few weeks ago), but I’m just curious – how many smokers so you own?
Jeff- I have this smoker and everything you said is true. I believe it’s 1000% better than anything traeger offers. One thing I wish the app had was the ability to store and retrieve data from old cooks. I am considering a Fireboard thermometer for this purpose.