Display is backlit
Accurately reads temperatures
Magnet on back for easy storage
Not actually an instant read thermometer
We purchased the Alpha Grillers Instant Read Meat Thermometer so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
Need a reliable thermometer for grilling? The Alpha Grillers Instant Read Meat Thermometer is waterproof, heavy duty, and built to last.The easy-to-use tool has a retractable probe that you can use at different angles and it also comes with a backlit display that’s particularly helpful during evening cookouts. To sweeten the deal even more, Alpha Grillers offers a lifetime money-back guarantee, so it’s really a no-risk purchase. Keep reading to see how the instant read thermometer held up in our home.
Setup Process and Calibration: Easy enough
The Alpha Grillers thermometer comes ready to go with the battery already placed inside. There really isn’t anything you need to do, although we’d recommend giving it a quick wipedown before using it.
Some thermometers need to be sent back to the manufacturer if they’re not properly calibrated, but that’s not the case with Alpha Grillers as you can calibrate it yourself by following the included instructions. It’s quite simple; just fill a glass with ice and water, stir, then let it sit for three minutes. After that, stir the water once more and place the thermometer’s probe in the glass. Once you have a steady temperature reading, press the HOLD button (generally for three to four seconds) until you get a proper reading of 32° F or 0° C.
Performance: Accurate but not instant
Alpha Grillers claims their thermometer has an accuracy level of plus/minus one degree when used within a temperature range of 4° F to 392° F. If you use the thermometer to measure a temperature below 4° F or above 392° F, it should be within two degrees of accuracy. To test this claim, we placed the thermometer’s probe in a pot of boiling water and, as promised, found a reading of 212° F.
Alpha Grillers calls this thermometer “instant read,” but it actually takes anywhere from four to seven seconds for it to get a steady temperature reading. This isn’t a big deal for most grillers, but keep this in mind if you’re looking for a split-second reading.
We placed the thermometer’s probe in a pot of boiling water and, as promised, found a reading of 212° F.
Although it’s not actually instant, we didn’t have any issues measuring temperatures with this thermometer. We used it to cook medium rare steaks, removing them from the grill when they reached 140°F and letting them rest to hit 145°F. Because the display is backlit, it was easy to measure the temperature—even as the screen fogged up from the steam.
Design: Extremely simple
Everything about this thermometer is simple—it automatically turns on when you unfold the probe; it starts reading the temperature without prompt; and if you forget to flip the probe back into the body when you’re done, it’ll turn itself off after 10 minutes so you don’t have to worry about draining the battery.
Alpha Grillers has printed a handy temperature guide right onto the thermometer, giving you easy access to the proper temperatures for poultry, fish, ground meat, and more.
The thermometer has just three buttons: one for switching between Fahrenheit and Celsius, one for turning the backlight on/off, and one that locks the temperature reading. The probe is 4.5 inches long, so if you need to stick it in a big hunk of meat, like a Thanksgiving turkey, it’ll be just as accurate as when used with a small chicken breast or skirt steak. The length also helps to keep your hands away from the scorching heat of a grill or stovetop.
Alpha Grillers has printed a handy temperature guide right onto the thermometer, giving you easy access to the proper temperatures for poultry, fish, ground meat, and more. The thermometer also has a built-in magnet so if you don’t have room to toss it in a drawer, you can stick it to the side of your fridge. The thermometer is waterproof, so you also have the option to leave it latched to your grill. As is the case with most electronics, however, it’s always best to expose it to as little water as possible.
Price: What you’d expect
The Alpha Grillers Instant Read Meat Thermometer goes for just under $20, making it comparable to other instant read thermometers on the market. Given its accuracy and the fact that it comes with a lifetime money-back guarantee, it’s a very low-risk purchase.
Competition: Depends on your needs
Habor Instant Read Thermometer: Usually retailing for around $10, this simple thermometer gets the job done well. It has a 4.7-inch probe for extra reach, the ability to change between Celsius and Fahrenheit, and a simple on/off button. It’s much less sophisticated than the Alpha Grillers Thermometer, but it still takes an accurate temperature. Plus, it’s cheaper.
Taylor Splash-Proof Infrared Thermometer: This thermometer usually goes for $100, but it comes with some handy features that make it worth it—that is, if you’re looking for a professional-level thermometer. The Taylor Precision Thermometer can read temperatures from -67° F to 482° F with the infrared technology and up to 626° F with its 5-inch probe.
- Product Name Instant Read Meat Thermometer
- Product Brand Alpha Grillers
- Price $17.97
- Weight 4.8 oz.
- Product Dimensions 6.3 x 2 x 1.6 in.
- Battery One LR44 battery required (comes with first one installed)
- Warranty Lifetime money-back guarantee