How to Barbecue

by Alan Kirk

Barbecuing is method of cooking that subjects thick cuts of meat to relatively low temperatures for an extended period of time. Barbecuing takes longer than grilling, which involves cooking thin cuts of meat on the grill directly over the heat source for shorter amounts of time. Patience while barbecuing is rewarded with intensely flavored meat.

Step 1

Choose a cut of meat to cook on the grill. Roasts, pork shoulders, ribs, entire chickens, and turkey breasts work well.

Step 2

Season the meat or poultry that you wish to barbecue. The meat or poultry can be seasoned using a wet marinade, a dry rub, or a barbecue sauce. Let the meat sit for several hours to absorb the flavoring of the marinade, rub or sauce.

Step 3

Soak wood chips in water for at least one hour before preparing your grill to barbecue, which allows the chips to smolder and produce smoke instead of burning quickly.

Step 4

Light the charcoal for your grill. This can be done using lighter fluid, an electric starter or using a chimney starter, which places the charcoal in a chamber over paper which is then lit to ignite the charcoal.

Step 5

Place the meat on the grill after the charcoal has a white ash coating on it. That will typically take 20 to 30 minutes. Use tongs to move the charcoal to the sides of the grill, and place a drip pan under the meat for catching juices that escape while it cooks. The meat should not be placed directly over the charcoal. Add the wood chips that were soaking if you wish to smoke your meat.

Step 6

Close the lid and allow the meat or poultry to cook inside of the grill. Do not open the lid on a regular basis to check the meat. The amount of time needed to barbecue each type of meat varies greatly. A good guideline was produced by the Smokymtbarbecue website (see resources).

Step 7

Add 15 to 20 pieces of charcoal to each side of the grill every two hours that the meat is barbecuing.

Step 8

Check the internal temperature of the meat or poultry you are grilling when the estimated cooking time is completed. Stick a meat thermometer into the middle of the thickest portion of the meat. Allow the meat to cook until it reaches an internal temperature indicated on the Smokymtbarbecue website.

Step 9

Remove the meat from the grill and allow it to sit for at least 15to twenty 20before cutting.

Tips

  • A chimney starter makes it very easy to add charcoal to your grill as you are barbecuing. The chimney starter can be placed on a concrete surface and the paper lit to light the charcoal. The charcoal can then be added after it has received a light ash coating.

Warnings

  • Opening the lid on the grill when barbecuing will allow the much needed heat to escape. This will increase your cooking times significantly.

About the Author

Alan Kirk has been writing for online publications since 2006. He has more than 15 years' experience in catering, management and government relations. Kirk has a bachelor's degree in business management from the University of Maryland.