Braving the Winter BBQ 101

Gloomy weather has got us dreaming of brighter BBQ days, but Winter doesn’t stop us Pitmasters. In fact, winter barbecues are a great way to bring the family together during those cold days.

Here we share with you some of our tips to having a top winter BBQ!

  • Choosing your BBQ:

For starters, you’ll need a barbecue designed to brave the cold weather, we recommend a BBQ with an exterior made of thick metal, one that also comes with a lid. The outside temperature influences the temperature inside the barbecue. When it comes to barbecuing in the winter, you’ll need to keep the BBQ as hot as possible, which is a lot more difficult to do when temperatures drop below zero.

  • BBQ Placement:

Safety tip number 1 is never bring your grill inside or into any enclosed space. It may be tempting (and we know it’s cold) but this is very dangerous, always operate your grill outdoors! When igniting the BBQ, make sure that the barbecue is out of the wind. The winter chill is not only unpleasant for us pitmasters when we’re grilling, but it also affects the BBQ. The heat from the BBQ insulates from the temperature within the grill. However, cold wind blowing on the barbecue will chill the temperature inside which causes the meat to cook less quickly.

  • Self-Care:

Sure, keeping the BBQ to temperature is important but you need to keep yourself warm too! Make sure you wrap yourself up warm, but watch out for long scarves and loose garments. You don’t want to set yourself alight! Tuck your scarf into your coat so that it does not catch fire. Wearing heat resistant gloves are also a great way to keep warm and safe. We recommend Kevlar gloves; Kevlar gloves are extremely heat proof with fibres that can withstand temperatures up to 420 degrees C and will not melt or drip. These gloves can not only be used to protect yourself against the heat of the BBQ, but are also suitable for keeping your hands warm during the winter.

  • Getting the fire going:

Without the help of the lovely summer sun’s warmth to keep things going, barbecuing takes longer in winter than in summer and getting the fire going will take a long time. It’s best to go for a gas barbecue, this eliminates the hassle of lighting coals and trying to keep them going. A gas barbecue will also ensure that your barbecue reaches temperature more quickly. (Top Tip – Start warming the grill slower, bringing the grill up to temperature over a longer period of time than usual, this gradual heating will help to reduce sticking!)

Propane and gas act differently in a grill when the weather is cold. Make sure to have extra fuel on hand. Depending on how cold it is outside, you may have to use more gas than what you would typically use to keep the grill at proper temperature in warmer weather. Make sure to leave the lid down on the grill with the vents open. Keeping the lid on will allow for you to keep the heat in and cook your meats thoroughly. Once you’ve fired up the grill and have started cooking, try to open the lid as little as you can, every time you open the grill you will lose heat in the cooking chamber.

For an extra flavour: You can also use a smoker for a winter barbecue. Cold smoking is a great way of adding extra flavour to the dish. You can even double up and smoke your meats in the smoker first before putting it on the barbecue.

Now you’re all set for a winter BBQ what’s the first thing you’ll be putting on the grill this year? Share with us your winter BBQ recipes and pics!

For extra ideas don’t forget to take a look at our website

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