Almost two-thirds of Americans already own a gas grill, and more people are embracing this outdoor cooking trend as we speak.
That’s because there is a lot to love about grilling. The flavors are delectable, it’s a convenient way to prepare food, and offers endless options when it comes to different dishes.
What’s more, grilling has great entertainment value if you love spending time outdoors with friends.
Have you recently joined the trend and are not sure where to start? Check out these grilling tips to help you make the most of this awesome cooking style.
1. Stock Up on Gas
The first thing gas types of grills need is fuel. Make sure your propane bottle is full before you get started. You don’t want to run out of heat halfway through your meal.
One way to check is by lifting the propane bottle. If it feels light, it’s nearly empty.
To avoid disappointment, you should always keep a spare bottle full of gas handy.
2. Gather Your Tools Before You Start Grilling
You’ll need the right implements to maximize your grilling efforts. Some items you’ll need, include:
- Long tongs
- Heavy-duty aluminum foil
- An instant-read thermometer
- A timer
- Hot pads
- Metal and soaked wooden skewers
- A basting brush
- Grill basket
Rimmed baking sheets come in handy for keeping raw and cook food separated.
You’ll also need a stick lighter or long matches and a grill brush.
3. Getting the Temperature Right
Learning to manage heat is the key to successful grilling.
Always pre-heat your grill on medium for at least ten minutes before you start cooking, and stay on this temperature setting if you want to grill things quickly.
You should only use the high-temperature setting to sear meat for a short time.
Low heat works best for keeping cooked food hot, slow cooking, or smoking. Yes, you can use a gas grill for smoking meat, according to this article by Own The Grill.
Close the lid when cooking things over ¾ of an inch thick.
4. Grilling Tips to Prevent Food Sticking
Always start with a clean, well-oiled grate whether you’re grilling meat, fish, or vegetables. This makes it much easier to tell when the food is ready for turning.
Test the edges of your meat every so often, and when they lift easily off the grill, you’re good to go. If it sticks at first, leave it on the grill for a few more minutes.
5. How to Create the Perfect Cross Hatch Pattern
Grill lines are both attractive and flavorful. They’re what sets grilling apart from other cooking styles.
Start by placing your meat on the grate at a 45-degree angle. Then, when the first grill marks appear, rotate the meat by a quarter turn.
Once you’ve got a gorgeous crosshatch pattern, you can repeat the process on the other side.
6. How to Grill Using a Thermometer
One of the best tips on grilling for beginners involves using a meat thermometer to get your meat just right. Even expert grillers swear by this tool when cooking.
Not only does a food thermometer help you grill food to perfection, but it also indicates when it’s ready to eat. An instant-read thermometer works best.
You should cook fish and ground meat at 145° F and pork at temperatures between 145 and 205° F. Poultry cooks best at 165° F.
Steak is a little more complicated. Aim for 165° F for a well-done steak, 155° F for medium, 145° F for medium-rare, and 130-135° F if you like your steak rare.
7. Cleaning Your Gas Grill
It’s vital to keep your grill clean and well-maintained if you want it to last. The best grills will serve you well for many years.
You should leave a layer of cooking grease on your grill after use. This protects it from the elements and helps it last longer.
Clean it before use by heating it on medium for fifteen minutes with the lid down.
When it stops smoking, lift the lid and brush the grate with a stiff-bristled grill brush, dipping the brush in hot water for stubborn spots.
Once you’ve got rid of all the grime, spray a thin layer of canola oil over the surface of the grates and wipe any excess off with a paper towel. This will stop food from sticking.
8. Mastering Cooking Times
Using a meat thermometer is one way to cook your meat perfectly every time. Yet, it helps you plan proceedings better if you know how long it take to cook each type of meat.
You can use this breakdown as a guide:
Use high, direct heat for cooking steaks. They should cook for 9 to 12 minutes in total, depending on the thickness of the steak and how you like it done.
Burgers need eight to ten minutes of cooking time. Use medium to high, direct heat, and add the cheese at the last minute.
Cook chicken with medium, indirect heat. This means it will take longer to cook, but you’ll end up with a moist, tender result.
Chicken breasts will take between 20 and 25 minutes when you cook them this way.
A thick-cut pork chop should take about 12 minutes to cook. Use medium, direct heat to cook this kind of meat.
Sausage is a rewarding and versatile grilled meat, but it takes a little longer to cook. These meats contain a lot of fat, so it’s important to turn them frequently to avoid charring.
Sausage usually takes around 25 minutes to cook over medium indirect heat.
Fish is a delicate meat and cooks best when you grill it quickly over high direct heat encased in aluminum foil. When you cook it this way, it’s ready to eat in ten minutes.
9. Meat Preparation 101
Marinating your meat or enhancing it with a rub adds powerful flavor to your meal. The longer you expose it to these herbs and spices, the better.
For best results, prepare the meat with all your favorites seasoning the night before and keep it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook.
If you’re adding BBQ sauce during cooking, leave it till the last minute. This sauce usually has loads of sugar, so it burns easily.
Take Your Grilling to the Next Level
Now, armed with these grilling tips, you can impress friends and family with your culinary expertise and enjoy your grilling experiences more than ever.
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