Summer is in the air and so is grilling season. We have compiled the top 12 mistakes that people make while grilling.
12: Not Properly Cleaning Your Grill After Sporadic Uses
Stuck on food doesn’t add flavor to your awesome BBQ sauce! It just adds a burnt old hotdog flavor to what would’ve been an amazing BBQ sauced burger. (If you use your grill consistently for cooking this is a different grill situation then the above and cleaning it every single time you use it can be a bit much).
11: The Bigger the Flames While Grilling do NOT Mean Bigger the Flavor
High flames can cause uneven cooking. You can have a perfectly cooked outside of that burger patty and the middle still can still be frozen. No one wants to bite into a nice looking burger with all of their favorite toppings only to chip a tooth on frozen meat that is hidden in the middle.
10: Having Bad Lighting Can Cause Negative Tastes
Make sure you can see what you are grilling. No one wants burnt veggies or raw chicken. Grilling late at night in the summer can be common due to other activities. Still enjoy the pool, but make sure you have proper lighting to see what you are cooking for all of your family and friends. A newer option to ensure great lighting is to check out grills that have LED lighting built into them, like Heston Outdoor Grills. With the lighting built in you can set up your grill anywhere you choose and still be sure to see what you are grilling.
9: Location, Location, Location
Just because the grill fits in a space doesn’t mean that’s where you should let it reside. You don’t want to grill too close to trees or on uneven land. You could potentially start fires or your grill could tip over or roll away. No one wants to see their dinner rolling down a hill to meet a dusty demise.
8: Not Properly Heating up Your Grill
Just because you feel the heat coming from your the grill doesn’t mean your grill rack is heated properly or enough for cooking. With an improperly heated grill rack food can get stuck to metal when trying to remove it. You also don’t get those nice grill marks when the rack is not properly heated. Without those markings to show the food was grilled what is the reason to grill over just using the oven anyway?
7: Constantly Checking on What You are Grilling
Ok burgers, hot dogs, chicken, etc. do taste better without being burnt to charcoaled bits. However, your food is not an infant who needs to be watched every second. Opening a grill constantly lets the heat escape. A grill needs heat to cook food; you can see where we’re going here.
6: Being Overzealous With Your Secret BBQ Sauce
Don’t let the secret to your sauce be that it is a burnt crust. You should NOT apply BBQ sauce in layers. These layers will burn. Furthermore, your next layer will cover up your burnt layers. Your guests will not enjoy your flavors. Also, the burnt charcoal that used to be chicken will cause your guests to not be able to enjoy your BBQ sauce.
5: You Didn’t Let Your Meat Rest
Meat is like a grumpy two-year-old it needs it’s rest before it can interact with guests. Almost everyone has had a steak that was dry and flavorless. You chewed it while chasing each bite with sips of cold soda in hopes of masking the flavor and adding moister. If you haven’t experienced this you are lucky. If you have, then you know that your steak didn’t get its resting period. Meat needs to rest. You shouldn’t cut meat too early. This will result in releasing all of its meaty juices and flavors. Resting will leave meat tender and full of flavor.
4: Being Too Anxious to eat
We get it; it’s been a long crazy day chasing kids. The dog jumped in the pool and you had to spend twenty minutes chasing him around the house to dry him off. That doesn’t mean that you should rush your meal. Undercooked chicken can make people very sick. Always keep track of your food’s temperature to ensure that meat is to a proper doneness.
3: Not Using a Thermometer
This goes along with our number four. Don’t just assume that it looks the right color so it’s what you want. Use a common tool to be sure, a thermometer. You can check the inside heat of meat by using thermometers which are specifically for meat. It is also easy enough to look up what temperatures different foods should be so they are safe to eat.
2: Not Properly Venting Your Grill
Charcoal grills need air to feed the coals. Too much oxygen can heat coals too much. The opposite can also happen with too little oxygen. Those little nuggets can have the heat suffocated right out of them. Adjust the vents on the grill to maintain a proper even heat of your coals. Or you can just go the non-coal route and you don’t have to worry about those nuggets and what they want.
1: Cross Contamination
We saved this for our number one because this is one of the most important grilling mistakes a person can make. Do NOT put raw meat with cooked meat! Consuming raw meat can lead to a lot of sicknesses and health effects. Those same sicknesses can occur from eating fully cooked meat that has been in contact with raw meat. Therefore, ALWAYS wash your utensils and hands after using them to move around raw meat or have two sets of utensils: one for raw and one for cooked meat. Do NOT let raw meat drip its juices on an already fully cooked piece of meat. Finally, ALWAYS make sure that you are using two different plates to transport your food: one for cooked and one for raw meat.
Hopefully, you can catch these grilling mistakes before there is any real damage done to a person or meal.
Enjoy the Summer with your loved ones and remember to continue to check out our Facebook for Summer DIY projects, safety tips, and much more!
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