When the sun comes out in the summer months and the kids get out of school, there’s nothing better than breaking out the old BBQ. Many people have fancy gas grills that come with neat features that make cooking a lot easier. But a BBQ traditionalist will say that grilling with gas is too easy.
Gas BBQs today are essentially outdoor kitchens and don’t offer the challenge of cooking with charcoal. Obviously, charcoal creates a more unpredictable cooking experience with an increased chance to burn your food.
But with the proper preparation and knowledge of basic tips, you might want to go back to using coals for the great flavor you simply can’t get with gas.
Charcoal BBQ for Smoky Flavor
Charcoal BBQs are still the preferred method of cooking for people who want a smoky flavor that can be achieved over many hours of slow cooking. For faster cooking steaks and chicken, a charcoal barbeque will be able to give you a great crisp sear on the outside while keeping food juicy on the inside.
If you are using charcoal, you should always make sure to light the fire twenty minutes before you start cooking. And don’t begin grilling until the coals are a light grey color or you risk the fire rising up and engulfing your food.
You should always have a spray water bottle in your hand to cut down the heat if it gets out of control. And don’t leave your BBQ unattended because the drippings from food can lead thing to get wild if you aren’t careful.
It’s always important to maintain your equipment so make sure to keep your grill as clean as possible. Some people wait until the next time they BBQ to clean their coal pit or grill, but you should never let the greasy residue solidify. A clean grill makes for a better tasting cut of meat and eliminates the sticking that ruins so much BBQ food.
There is a great tradition of charcoal barbeque grills that has allowed people to enjoy great tasting BBQ for years. So consider going back to your roots and you may rediscover a way of cooking that offers both challenge and juicy flavor.
5 Fresh and Exciting Camping Barbecue Ideas
You consider yourself a master of the grill and you understand that means changing things up from time to time. While there might be some traditional favorites that you always serve while camping, you don’t want things to get stale and predictable. It’s important to come up with menu ideas that will dazzle your friends and family and keep them guessing.
When you’re able to come up with that perfect combination of authentic dishes with your own personal twist, that’s when you start to stand out from the rest. And it’s all worthwhile because barbecue is the best way to show off your skills under the summer sun.
The right combination of skillfully prepared food in the great outdoors leads to great memories that last a long time. Here are some fresh and exciting ways you can make sure your next barbecue adventure is unique.
Tasty BBQ Pizza
Everyone likes juicy steaks and chicken wings, but how about adding a bit of Italian flair to your next barbecue meal? It’s actually a lot less complicated than most barbecue dishes, and you’ll be left with a crispy crust that simply can’t be beaten.
This is also a great way to give your guests a chance to build their own pizza so they can come up with their ultimate combination of toppings. You’ll also like how easy it is to prepare which means you can make it as an appetizer or a main dish.
BBQ at Night Time
Who says you always have to barbecue when it’s sunny anyways? There’s nothing better than a scrumptious meal surrounded by warm nighttime air that only summer can offer. All you need are a few patio lights and some delicious alcoholic beverages so you and your friends can relax.
The only downside is you have to control your appetite until it actually gets dark. Of course, you can also choose to cook food by campfire if your site allows as well.
While it might seem like a lazy tactic at first, it’s also incredibly smart one. Ask your friends or camping neighbors to bring along one dish so that you can add variety to your overall menu plan. This gives you access to different cooking styles and it’s a great thing to share.
Of course, you’ll have a job as well which is to handle all of the meat and vegetables that come off your barbecue grill. When you don’t have to worry about side dishes, you can put all of your energy into making sure your barbecue food comes out perfectly.
Use Charcoal for a Change
It might have been a while since you’ve used a charcoal grill, but there’s nothing wrong with adding this blast from the past. Even if you don’t want to go with a full charcoal model, you can find a portable one that will offer you a chance to add authentic taste your food.
No matter how fancy modern gas grills, it’s impossible to get the same type of flavor you can from traditional coals. Best of all, a smaller charcoal grill will increase your overall cooking area without costing you a lot of money.
Your Own BBQ Sauce
If you want to add a special element to your barbecue meal that will really stand out from the rest, then why not make your own sauce? A lot of people don’t go to the effort because they think it’s a lot more work than it’s worth.
But a basic sauce is quite easy to prepare and over time you’ll begin to perfect your personal barbecue sauce recipe. This is the perfect way to put a personal signature on all of your food, and pretty soon your friends will be asking you for your secret.
What Are the Top BBQ Grills You Can Have?
I have tested several grills myself. And I found there are 2 portable camping grills that are best for BBQ. They are the Weber and Camco.
Weber Portable Barbecue Grills
Portable barbecue grills can come in all shapes and sizes. But if you are searching for something that looks a little bit different and has a really contemporary design, then considers purchasing the Weber portable gas grill.
This particular BBQ grill works by using propane gas. All you need to do is to attach a mini gas canister to the unit and then at the push of a button. You will have all the power and heat you require in order to get your grill on.
You can regulate the amount of gas that is needed by turning the adjustable valve that is on the side. This is a fantastic addition because you will be able to determine how hot you need the grill to be depending on what you are cooking.
Food To Cook On Your Portable BBQ Grill
This grill will cook a wide array of food all at one time. You can place a selection of meat items on the griddle if you so desire. This includes, of course, all the sausages, the steaks, the pork chops and even bacon that everyone likes to eat. Whatever you feel like barbecuing, you can choose it and lay in on the grill surface.
Are you a fish eater? Well if you prefer to eat some fish, you can also prepare something like salmon or tuna. To keep it all together, you should take your piece of fish, place it in some tin foil, add a little seasoning and pop it on the grill. It will not take long to cook at all.
Use The BBQ To Cook Vegetables
If you want to ensure that everyone is getting a balanced meal, you can also prepare your choice of vegetables too. Cut up some sweet corn, clean up some spring onions and slice up some peppers and put those on the grill as well. You can then create your own kebabs by getting kebab skewers and threading some meat and vegetables onto it.
The Weber portable mini grill is a wonderful addition to any home especially when the weather is getting better and better. Everyone wants to be outside enjoying the sun and cooking al fresco would be an extra special treat.
This mini grill would also make a fantastic gift idea for family and friends. Find out more about the benefits of buying a portable barbecue grill today.
Read also: How To Pick Your First Pocket Knife
Camco Olympian Tabletop Grill
If you are looking for a nice and simple tabletop grill that you can use at home in the garden or take away with you on camping trips then you may like to consider purchasing the Camco Olympian 5500 Stainless Steel Portable Gas Grill. This is a great example of the type of portable barbecue grills that have been specially designed for outdoor use.
This compact unit is made from very heavy duty cast aluminum. It is rectangle in shape which makes it easy to also store as it does not have an odd shape or odd angles.
The measurements of this mini grill make it a good size to barbecue a complete meal at one time. It measures 25.5 inches wide, is 14.2 inches in height and the diameter comes in at 17.5 inches in total.
When you are ready to use this grill, you will find that it is very easy to assemble. In no time at all, you will be able to fire it up and start the cooking process at your leisure.
The Camco Olympian 5500 Portable Gas Grill uses standard commercial and disposable gas cylinders. It is a simple task to attach the canister when you are ready to use it.
Features That Improve The Taste Of Your Food
The cast iron smoker plate that is part of this barbecue grill helps to improve the taste of any food that you are grilling. You will find that the smoker plate is designed to provide an even fuller flavor to your food and enhance the overall barbecue taste and aroma.
If you like the idea of popping on a couple of juicy T-bone steaks on the barbecue then you will not be disappointed with the cooking ability of this smart little unit.
The heat is distributed evenly throughout the cooking process and the end result will be a plate of tasty steaks. Add a selection of different vegetables of your choice like some sweet corn or sliced onions and you will have a complete meal done in no time at all.
How Long Should a BBQ Grill Last?
Before buying a BBQ grill, most people will have this question in mind. Generally, if you go for outdoor activities a lot and use the BBQ grill from time to time, then the grill can be last for 5 to 10 years. However, if you buy the grill and only use it once, then you just store into your garage without touching it anymore, then it may only last for 2 to 3 years due to neglecting.
Ways to Enjoy Camping Food without a Barbecue
One of the things I enjoy most about camping is cooking in the great outdoors with my family. It’s one of the biggest reasons why I go camping in the first place. I’ve had my trusty camping barbecue for over five years, and it’s never failed me.
Unfortunately, as I get older, I’ve had to start thinking about my health. Gone are the days when I could eat a weeks-worth of barbecue food without worrying about my cholesterol levels.
I can’t help but feel guilty when I gorge myself on burgers and BBQ chicken 5 days in a row, and it’s virtually impossible to come back from a camping trip these days without gaining weight. I’ve decided to take a new approach to my camping meal planning, and a big part of it is using my barbecue more responsibly.
I’ve incorporated several types of food and ways of cooking that don’t involve my grill at all. These days I’m still able to enjoy a wide array of flavorful food without relying on my barbecue so much.
Frozen Soups and Stews
This is a handy trick that my best friend showed me. Before he goes on a camping trip, he prepares homemade soups and stews and then freezes them in Ziploc bags. He puts them in the cooler alongside other frozen items, and it helps to keep everything else cold in addition to the ice.
When you are ready to eat, all you have to do is plop your frozen soup or stew into a pot, and you’re good to go. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
I used to think of dehydrated food as something you used as a last resort in emergency situations. In fact, I’ve had the same emergency kit for years, and it contains packs of dehydrated food (which I would be hesitant to heat in a real-life emergency).
But these days, the world of dehydrated food has expanded, and some of the choices are actually quite tasty. While I would never use them solely for an entire trip, they do make great lunch options or quick snacks.
Fresh produce can only be kept for so long which is why I opt for canned fruits and vegetables. This way I can incorporate a bit of health into my camping recipes as well. If you’re looking for something a bit different, check out Asian canned items.
There are some interesting vegetables that you might not include in your regular diet such as oyster mushrooms. But when used properly in the right recipe, they add a bit of flair to traditional dishes.
A Pressure Cooker
Whenever I go camping with my RV, or I have access to a generator, I’ll bring along my electric pressure cooker. This is the perfect way to prepare a hearty stew right on the spot. Sure I could use old-fashioned methods with a cast iron pot and a campfire, but who wants to cook for four hours?
Using a handy device like this speeds up the process. and it can be used for more elaborate foods like pot roast, Curry, Chile, or gumbo – try making those dishes with a barbecue! Best of all, there are lots of affordable models like the ones found at tendercookers.com, and you can use them at home when your trip is over too.
One of my favorite foods of all time is smoked salmon. You can also find prepackaged lox with a mild flavor, and it’s ready to eat right away. This is something you can throw in a cooler and keep indefinitely before opening up the package.
This type of salmon is extremely versatile and perfect for sandwiches or on top of a fresh salad. Snacktime is also a big part of my camping routine, and I love smoked foods like beef jerky as well. They are perfect when you need something to munch on or a quick boost of energy right before a long hike.
As you can see, camping food does not have to be all about barbecue food. Get a bit of variation into your life!