How to Grill and Smoke Everything

How to Grill and Smoke Everything

By:

Dave Joachim

You asked, we answered

Seems like more and more people are cooking these days. We’ve been flooded with questions like How do I smoke a brisket? What’s the best way to clean my grill grates? How do I mail-order a gas grill? What’s the best way to build a wood fire?

These questions are music to our ears. It means more people are cooking outdoors! If there’s one good thing about staying closer to home, it’s this: it’s the perfect opportunity to get outside and give your grill or smoker some love. This could be the year that you make your best brisket ever. Or maybe it’s time to sharpen your knives on a whetstone. Then you can use them to break down a whole beef tenderloin to fill your freezer with steaks and roasts for the coming months. Or maybe now is a good time to build that hog pit you’ve been dreaming of. Or just smoke-roast some nuts to snack on. You could even smoke some ice to make a killer cocktail to go with tonight’s dinner. Or maybe you just want to know the best way to stay safe when handling and cooking food.

No matter what you want to know about outdoor cooking, or why you should know about it, you’ll likely find an answer here. Type your questions into the big magnifying glass on this page. If you don’t find an answer, send us a note telling us what you want to know. Our experts will do the research, dig deep, consult with as many sources as we can, and give you the best possible response. In the meantime, here are answers to your most burning “how to” questions about barbecue and grilling equipment, ingredients, and techniques. Just click the links!

grills and smokers

Equipment

How to buy a basic charcoal grilling starter kit

How to buy the best grill

How to buy the best smoker

How to buy the best kamado

How to buy the best griddle grill

How to buy the best portable grill

How to buy the best pellet smoker

How to buy the best outdoor pizza oven

How to buy the best grill grates

How to buy the best grill tools

How to buy the best grill gloves

How to buy the best cut resistant gloves

How to buy the best charcoal starter

How to buy the best indoor grill

How to buy the best stovetop smoker

How to buy the best thermometer

How to buy the best cooler

How to buy the best knife

How to buy the best knife sharpener

How to sharpen a knife

How to buy the best pots and pans

How to buy the best cast iron

How to season cast iron

How to clean cast iron

How to clean grill grates

How to maintain a grill or smoker

How to troubleshoot a grill or smoker

How to calibrate a grill or oven

How to design an outdoor kitchen

How to build a hog pit

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whole beef tenderloin cut into parts

Ingredients

How to buy the best meat

How to thaw meat safely

How to grind meat

How to understand food safety in the age of coronavirus

How to break down a whole hog (scroll down to “whole hog” for a video)

How to break down a whole beef tenderloin

How to remove the membrane from ribs

How to pound chicken breasts

How to spatchcock turkey and butterfly chicken

How to dice onions

How to caramelize onions

How to clarify butter

How to do mise en place

2-zone setup for smoking on a kettle grill

Techniques

How to make a brine for juicier meat

How long to brine meat

How to make the best marinade

How to make the best spice rub

How to make the best herb paste

How to cure meat

How to make the best bacon

How to make the best sausage

How to dry age steaks

How to make the best jerky

How to make the best pickles

How to build a wood fire

How to get started with charcoal grilling

How to make a 2-zone setup

How to set up a charcoal grill for smoking

How to set up and modify an offset or barrel smoker

How to smoke the best brisket

How to make the best burnt ends

How to make the best pastrami

How to roast the best beef prime rib

How to grill the best London broil

How to roast the best tri-tip

How to grill the best steak

How to make the best hamburger

How to smoke the best ham

How to smoke the best ribs

How to smoke the best pork shoulder

How to make the best porchetta

How to grill the best pork belly

How to grill the best pork chops

How to grill the best pork loin and pork tenderloin

How to smoke the best pork crown roast

How to roast a whole hog or suckling pig

How to make the best pulled pork on a gas grill or in a smoker

How to grill the best chicken wings

How to grill the best chicken breast

How to grill the best whole chicken

How to grill and smoke the best whole turkey

How to smoke the best Peking duck

How to make the best duck confit

How to make the best leg of lamb

How to make the best grilled lamb chops

How to make the best grilled gyros

How to make the best smoked salmon

How to make the best grilled salmon

How to make the best grilled catfish

How to make the best grilled oysters

How to make the best grilled shrimp

How to make the best grilled lobster

How to make the best grilled corn

How to make the best grilled vegetables

How to make the best smoked vegetables

How to make the best barbecued mushrooms

How to make the best caramelized onions

How to grill potatoes

How to make the best cole slaw

How to make the best grilled pizza

How to make the best French toast on the grill

How to make the best biscuits

How to make the best garlic bread

How to make the best grilled sandwiches

How to make the best smoked nuts

How to make the best baked beans

How to make the best roasted garlic

How to make the best grilled watermelon

How to make the best mac and cheese

How to make the best ketchup

How to smoke on a kettle grill

How to cook sous vide and barbecue

How to use a drip pan

How to keep food from sticking to the grill grate

Free Barbecue News magazine every month to members of our Pitmaster Club. Click here for a free 30 day trial. No credit card needed. No spam. Click here to Be Amazing!

How to baste, mop, and spritz

How to do a reverse sear

How to get a killer sear

How to cook on a salt block

How fry on a grill

How to get the best bark on ribs, brisket, and pork shoulder

How to get past the stall when smoking meat

How to use the Texas crutch

How to make the best BBQ sauce

How to make the best burger sauce

How to make the best steak sauce

How to make the best board sauce

How to make the best hot sauce

How to apply BBQ sauce

How to keep meat warm

How to carve a turkey or chicken

How to slice brisket

How to win a competition BBQ

How to tailgate like a pro

How to cook for a crowd

How to judge cooking time

How to make smoked ice

How to make the best cocktails to go with BBQ

How to grill dessert

How to freeze leftovers

How to reheat leftovers

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Published On: 4/2/2020 Last Modified: 4/27/2021

  • Dave Joachim - Editor of AmazingRibs.com, David Joachim has authored, edited, or collaborated on more than 45 cookbooks, four of them on barbecue and grilling, and his Food Science column has appeared in "Fine Cooking" magazine since 2011. He’s a perfect match for a website dedicated to the “Science of Barbecue and Grilling.”


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Spotlight

These are not ads or paid placements. These are some of our favorite tools and toys.

These are products we have tested, won our top awards, and are highly recommend. Click here to read how we test, about our medals, and what they mean.

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GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone


GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, kill hotspots, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily rmoved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke.

Click here for more about what makes these grates so special

Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here’s A Great Buy!

A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!
Click here to read our complete review

Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.
Click here for our review of this superb smoker


Surely you know somebody who loves outdoor cooking who deserves a gift for the holidays, birthday, anniversary, or just for being wonderful. There he is, right in the mirror! Here are our selections of best ideas, all Platinum or Gold Medalists, listed by price.

Click here to see our list of Gold Medal Gifts

Compact Powerful Sear Machine For Your Next Tailgater


Char-Broil’s Grill2Go x200 is a super-portable, fun little sizzler made of heavy, rust-proof cast aluminum. The lid snaps shut. Grab the handle and you’re off to the party! Char-Broil’s TRU-Infrared design produces searing heat while reducing fuel consumption. A 16 ounce LP gas canister is enough to keep you flipping burgers for hours.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order

Heat Resistant Gloves With Extra Long Sleeves Hold The Hot Stuff

If you’re using oven mitts at the grill, it’s time to trade up. Say hello to these suede welder’s gloves. They’re heat resistant enough to handle hot grill grates, and flexible enough to handle tongs. The extra long sleeves even let you reach deep into the firebox to move hot logs without getting burned. Our Fave.

Click here to read our detailed review

Click here to order from Amazon

If you have a Weber Kettle, you need the Slow ‘N’ Sear


The Slow ‘N’ Sear turns your grill into a first class smoker and also creates an extremely hot sear zone you can use to create steakhouse steaks.
Click here for our article on this breakthrough tool