Summer and fall are big seasons to enjoy eating outside in the fresh air. And, for aspiring barbecue experts and grill masters, it's the perfect time to perfect your craft. But, in order to master the art of the grill or smoker, you need to have the proper tools. A lot of these tools can be purchased as part of a kit but they can also be found separately for those who want to replace or upgrade their tools.
The first--and most important--tool needed is a grill
. What you want to cook will most likely determine whether or not you need a grill, smoker, fryer
, or some combination
of the three. Grills are great and the most versatile of the three as they can cook anything from fish and cuts of meat to vegetables and kebabs. Smokers are perfect for anyone wanting to make baby back ribs and brisket. Fryers, as the name suggests, are good for frying food--French fries, onion rings, fried fish, etc.
While perhaps not considered a necessity by some, grilling gloves
are a good idea to keep on hand. Not only are they a safety measure but they can protect against high heat which makes them ideal for anyone who enjoys smoking large cuts of meat.
Possibly one of the top two most used tools in any grill set, long tongs
are incredibly useful for two reasons. One, they make turning over foods like hots dogs or corn on the cob much easier. And two, they also help protect your hands and knuckles from the heat and fire of the grill as they allow you to stand farther away from the grill surface when checking or turning the food. The other top two most used tool in a grill set is the spatula
. This wide-blade, flat surface makes flipping burgers, fish, and grilled veggies easy and efficient.
If you want to ensure that your meat is tender and flavorful, adding a marinade injector
is a must. In addition to helping evenly distribute flavor reliably to the meat, this injector also makes sure that the meat stays moisturized, an important factor when wanting tender, falling-off-the-bone meat.
When smoking or slow-cooking a brisket or other, large amounts of BBQ meat, monitoring and maintaining temperature is paramount. Using a meat thermometer
or pocket thermometer
allows you to monitor the "doneness" of the meat without having to repeatedly touch, remove, or otherwise disturb the food during cooking.
If you find yourself grilling vegetables on a regular basis, investing in a vegetable basket for your grill could be a worthwhile purchase. Not only is this tool great for grilling vegetables, it can also help keep the working space near the grill more organized and less cluttered.
Similar to a marinade injector, trigger spray bottles
also help produce flavorful meat. These bottles spray rather than squirt, which means the liquid can be spread more proportionally and evenly coat the food. Using a spray bottle also makes it easier to apply any seasoning, oils, or dressing on the food.
Cleaning up after your grill or smoker has cooled down after use is just as important as the cooking process. A grill brush
and scraping paddle
both make clean-up easier as they can clear soot gathered around the grill grates, removing leftover or burnt pieces, and keep rust and bacteria at bay. The quality of the grill brush can also make a difference as the quality of the bristles can vary.