Just like with anything you’ve been doing for a long time, over the years you may have found thing that you use and don’t know what you’d do without them. Things that you don’t necessarily need to get the job done but makes it faster or makes the process more efficient. The same goes with grilling and smoking. I have compiled a list of things that you can add to your kitchen and take advantage of the advancements in technology over the years all while making your process more efficient and make your grilling life easier in general.
This was the first accessory I got and by far the best! Of course you can light your coals by just putting in a stack but I prefer the starter to give me more control on where I want the coals, more even lighting, and quicker lighting.
Like most of us learned from older family members or however you gained your basic grill knowledge, you are supposed to pour your coals out and douse them with lighter fluid. Followed by throwing the lit match and watch the flame skyrocket. That’s cool and all but I started using these and all of that changed. Sitting the chimney full of coals on top of 1 or 2 of these is like sitting on a gas burner. Steady flame, less chemicals, no gas tasting food.
Basting in most cases is another way to impart flavor during the cooking process. Sometimes you’re making a compound butter for seafood, a mop sauce for some pork, or your own special recipe BBQ sauce for some chicken. Whatever the application this will keep you from having to bring the while pot off your stove out to the pit. Even if you don’t have the small pot to go with it, the silicone brushes are usually safe at high temps. (600-f and beyond)
This one is self-explanatory. Probably the most useful tools to have if you are cooking something you don’t have much experience with. Not to be confused with the non-instant read variety, these are much faster and more accurate. Always go Instant read.
If you can, invest a few bucks in some stainless-steel skewers as well as some wooden ones. Having the wooden ones are great for making kebabs for large gatherings. Just make sure you soak them in water for a few hours before use.
A grilling basket is great for smaller foods that you want to grill or even just put some char on. Mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, fruits. Anything that can fall in between those grates you want to put in the basket.
This accessory is more for the low & slow smokers out there. A bluetooth thermometer is a time saver and a life saver, especially since we are already attached to our phones seemingly 24-7. With presets built-in you won’t over or undercook your food. You can also monitor the ambient temp in your cooker all from your couch. Some even have wi-fi built in so you can run to the store for more ingredients and still monitor your smoker remotely using your mobile device.
You absolutely need to keep your grill as clean as you can. Cleaning your grill is not only sanitary, it helps with getting those illustrious grill marks we all love. The best time to clean your grates is when they are hot. Right after your cook or right before the next one. The wired brushes are the best at doing this because they can stand up to the heat.
Heat Resistant Hand Protection
Whether you are handling a chimney starter full of hot coals or pulling apart that pork shoulder hot off the smoker, you are going to be dealing with hot things. Don’t go in there bare-handed and burn yourself.
Extended Length Tongs/Spatula
You can definitely use the ones out of your kitchen but the longer ones keep your hands further away from the heat of the fire.