Super cute and super affordable - why this £200 BBQ won over our hard-to-please reviewer...

Whether you have a small patio or a small family, this compact gas barbecue will fit the bill and make al-fresco cooking easy and stress-free this summer.

Cadac Citi Chef Gas BBQ cooking salmon
(Image credit: Cadac UK)
Ideal Home Verdict

For some reason, gas barbecues are always huge and bulky. But the Cadac Citi Chef 40 FS is a compact gas barbecue that’s ideal for smaller spaces. Happily, it offers plenty of grill space to cook for several people and it’s very easy to use. Plus, with an array of optional accessories you can go wild and turn it into a multi-functional outdoor cooker.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Compatible with a range of gas supplies

  • +

    Stylish design

  • +

    Easy to move around

  • +

    Heats up fast

  • +

    Plenty of optional accessories

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Initial setup is fiddly

  • -

    Too small for very large gatherings

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    Gas connection has to be ordered separately

Why you can trust Ideal Home Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Barbecues are synonymous with summer and in the UK we love a good barbecue, which is somewhat surprising given how frequently they get rained off! The beauty of a gas barbecue though is that they heat up very fast and you can get the cooking done before that looming raincloud gets too close.

But if you have a small backyard or balcony, it can be tricky to find a one of the best BBQs that’s not a monstrous six-person cooking station. Enter the Cadac Citi Chef. It's one of the best gas BBQs, with a compact design that’s ideal for 2-4 people and perfect for small spaces. Not only that, but its sleek wooden legs and friendly curves give at a stylish look that won’t spoil your outdoor aesthetic.

I fired up this gas barbecue in spring and was lucky the sun came out for a few days. It’s super easy to use and it looks great, so it’s the perfect choice no matter whether you’re a newbie or outdoor cooking pro.

 Cadac Citi Chef 40 FS Gas BBQ product specs 

Cadac Citi Chef BBQ in cutout image

(Image credit: Cadac UK)
  • Fuel type: gas
  • Materials: Ceramic BBQ grid, wooden legs, porcelain enamelled fat pan
  • Dimensions: 95 x 46 x 72cm
  • Cooking area dimensions: 40 cm diameter
  • Weight: 12kg
  • Number of burners: 1
  • Colours: Grey or black

Who reviewed this BBQ?

Image of Helen McCue, Freelance Contirbutor
Helen McCue

After completing a Home Economics degree, Helen went on to work for the Good Housekeeping Institute and has been reviewing home appliances ever since. She lives in a small village in Buckinghamshire in the UK, where she reviews all sorts of home and garden appliances using her wealth of experience. 

Unboxing, setting up and first impressions

The Cadac Citi Chef showed up in a fairly big box, but it wasn’t too cumbersome to move around. Upon opening, I was disappointed by the amount of polystyrene in the box, for me this destined-for-landfill chunky packaging is an unwelcome sight.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

Like most barbecues, the Citi Chef 40 does come in several pieces that require assembly. Each of the four wooden legs requires two screws to secure it to the underside of the barbecue. It’s a bit fiddly and you’ll need to supply your own screwdriver. Then the shelf needs screwing into position, there’s four screws in total, one for each leg. 

The handle needs screwing onto the lid and the temperature gauge simply bolts into position by hand. Assembly is doable by yourself but having a second pair of hands makes some of it easier.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

Once it was stood upright, slotting the rest of the pieces together was pretty straightforward. The grill plate sits on top of a removable drip pan. I’ll admit I was slightly thrown by the metal pot stand that didn’t seem to fit in anywhere, and the sparse instruction manual didn’t help me out. But I eventually figured out it’s for use with some of the optional accessories like the pizza stone or paella pan.

The two side tables are designed to be removed for more compact storage so they lock into place with plastic clips that twist easily to allow for speedy unclipping. At first I did worry that the shelves were a bit too plasticky and not solid enough, but later during testing they proved up to the job of holding plates and sauces. There’s also a tiny hook on the front of each shelf for your tongs, though it’ll be too small for some chunkier barbecue tools.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

My barbecue came with a free weatherproof cover (usually £30), which will certainly come in handy if you have a very small outdoor space with no storage. The cover has a large strip of velcro at the back to make it easy to position on the barbecue. Plus, it’s been designed with side flaps, so it’ll still go on even when the side tables are in position. Though it’ll be more weather proof if you remove them first. It’s a heavy duty vinyl cover that’s designed to protect the barbecue year round and it seems good quality.

Gas Cadac BBQ with black cover on

(Image credit: Future)

What it doesn’t come with is a gas connection hose. I didn’t realise this until I’d set it up, the gas connection has to be ordered separately depending on what type of gas supply you intend to use and is an added cost. 

When I eventually got mine, I struggled to connect the hose to the barbecue fitting and had to (reluctantly) enlist help from my husband to get the hose in place and tighten the jubilee clip.

Cooking on the Cadac Citi Chef 40 FS

With automatic ignition and one simple knob on the front to control the flame, using this barbecue is as simple as operating a gas hob. The first time I used it I lit the flame, closed the lid and when I checked five minutes later the temperature gauge in the lid was showing almost 200oC, it heats up super fast.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

I loaded up the grill plate with ten big fat pork sausages and two veggie sausages and I was quite surprised to note that there was still plenty of room for more food. I left the gas on the highest setting and the heat was very evenly distributed, there were no obvious hot or cool spots and all the sausages cooked at the same rate, which certainly made cooking a breeze.

I periodically placed the lid on during cooking to help keep the heat in and when I removed it, I used the integrated hook to hook it onto the back of the barbecue. It’s a bit fiddly at first but you soon get the hang of exactly how to position it to hook it on correctly and it’s better than having to put the lid on the floor.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

The sausages were cooked in under 20 minutes and the grill plate left very defined bar marks on them. Not only did they look tasty, but the meat was succulent and there was no drying out, all in all a great batch of sausages.

Next I cooked chicken thighs alongside corn on the cob and halloumi slices. After allowing it to heat up for five minutes I placed four chicken thighs and two raw corn on the cobs onto the grill. The chicken skin started to get dark quite quickly so I turned down the heat mid way through cooking, which allowed me to be sure they got fully cooked on the inside.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

Interestingly, once the heat had been reduced, I started to notice the grill plate was hotter towards the centre and cooler around the outside. This became very evident when I added the halloumi slices because some were getting charred much faster than others. But once I’d figured it out, it was handy to have a cooler area where I could keep the chicken warm while the halloumi cooked.

I basted the chicken with hot sauce and there was quite a lot of fat dripping out of it. As you can see in the pictures, the fat sitting below the grill plate set on fire several times, but it was only ever a momentary thing and it went out pretty quickly by itself.

Cadac Citi BBQ during testing at home

(Image credit: Future)

The corn on the cob cooked really nicely, I did have to keep turning it frequently to get an even cook, but the result was very good despite it going on the grill completely raw. Similarly, the chicken skin crisped and charred nicely and the meat was tender and succulent. 

On my charcoal barbecue I always manage to lose some halloumi through the gaps in the grate but there’s no danger of that here, so it was nice to come away with the same amount of slices that I started with!

 Cleaning and maintenance

Once cool, the grill plate and drip pan below it, can be lifted out and taken to your sink. I’ve got quite a deep butler style sink, so I could fit each one in individually for the BBQ cleaning. But if you have a small, shallow sink, it might be a bit trickier. 

Nevertheless, I wiped both down with kitchen towels first to remove excess grease and residue. After that they were no more difficult to clean than a griddle pan and a greasy roasting tray.

Admittedly, I didn’t scrub until they were pristine, it’s still a barbecue after all! I should mention that after cooking the chicken thighs, I went away for a couple of days and didn’t bother cleaning it until I got back, and actually the non-stick coating meant the old, dried-on grease and muck was just as easy to remove even two days later.

The instruction manual makes no mention of whether these parts can go in the dishwasher. But they’re big so they’d take up a lot of space if you did try to put them in, so I’d rather leave space for the plates and dishes and wash them by hand instead. The underside of the lid as well as the two side shelves just needed a wipe with a damp cloth and some kitchen spray.


If you’ve got a bigger budget but you still don’t want a huge barbecue it’s worth checking out the Char-Broil All Star Gas barbecue. At almost £450 it is double the price of the Cadac and arguably it doesn’t look as pretty, but it’s a beefed up and sturdier option. The hinged lid is easier to use and the side tables are much bigger, which will be helpful if you struggle for places to put your food as you take it off. At 45cm the cooking grill is slightly bigger plus there’s a higher shelf for keeping cooked food warm.

A bigger gas barbecue that still scores plenty of points in the looks department is the Everdure by Heston Blumenthal Force 2 Burner gas barbecue. With two burners and a larger cooking area, it offers more scope for cooking for a crowd. But, the sleek shape and three colour options, mean you don’t have to sacrifice style. And with space for two whole chickens under the hood, it’s a versatile option. But there’s a catch, and it’s the £750 price tag.

Should you buy the Cadac Citi Chef 40 FS? 

If you want a gas barbecue but you don’t have the need or the space for one of the expensive oversized models, I think this is a fantastic alternative. It might not offer multiple burners and various levels, but in my opinion its simplicity is part of the draw. Though if you are looking to entertain a crowd, you’ll be better off buying a bigger model.


(Image credit: Cadac UK)

Not only is it a great choice for small patios or terraces, but it looks very stylish too, which is an absolute must in a small space where you can’t hide it away. And having the option to buy additional accessories that’ll allow you to use it to make other meals like paella, gives unexpected versatility to this compact gas barbecue.

Once the slightly fiddly assembly is out of the way, this barbecue is effortlessly easy to use. Just remember to add a gas fitting to the basket before you checkout.

About this review, and the reviewer

As part of Ideal Home's commitment to how we test, Helen tried out this gas barbecue on a couple of rare sunny days during an exceptionally wet and dreary April and the threat of the weather turning made its speed of heating up and ease of use even more welcome. She used it with a bottle of standard propane patio gas to cook up a variety of foods. She was allowed to keep the barbecue after the review.

Helen McCue
Freelance Reviewer

 After completing a Home Economics degree, Helen went on to work for the Good Housekeeping Institute and has been reviewing home appliances ever since. She lives in a small village in Buckinghamshire in the UK.