We get a lot of questions about our go-to gadgets for barbecuing and grilling. So, given that Amazon's Prime Day is less than 2 weeks away, we figured we would put some of our favorites here so you could click some buttons, wait two days, and then have everything you need.
The Masterbuilt Electric Smoker with Window and RF Controller is the smoker that started it all for us. It's an electric smoker which is great for controlling the temperature and time and its also easy as can be. Great for urban dwellers who may have fuel source limitations. Any of the Masterbuilt smokers are great, but we find this one is a great given it's relatively small footprint, wood chip tray, and easy moving wheels. Definitely invest in the cover to keep it protected when not in use. We did find that the cover was sun-bleached after two years, but otherwise, it's in good condition.
Many of you will likely already have a grill, but if you are looking to replace, add another, or just like to stare longingly at barbecue grills, these are our some of our favorites.
If you are going to use charcoal, go for Weber. It's the classic and there's a reason for that: they work. You can get the original Kettle for about $100 and it's going to last you a long time. If you want to get a little fancier, we like Weber's Performer Deluxe. It's the same idea of the original kettle design, but with a workspace, trash bin, and an easier way to clean out the ashes. If you are in a high wind area or aren't so great with starting a fire with charcoal (no judgements) we would suggest the chimney starter. They are about $25-$30 and will save you some headaches.
Not always the most desirable, but for those with city/town restrictions on fuel sources, this is sometimes the only choice. We use Char-Broil's Patio Bistro Grill here and it's pretty good. Electric grills — and stove tops for that matter — have come a long way so don't count them out without doing some research. We like this because it's small, but still large enough to cook a full meal for 4 people or to easily have a rotating source of burgers and hot dogs for a larger group.
*SIGH* We miss propane — it's quick, it's clean, and it's the closest to natural gas cooking that we have found and that means consistent control of flame and temperature. There are a great many options for propane grills. The Char-Broil Classic Six-Burner is, well, classic and does what you need with a healthy amount of cooking area, protected area for your propane tank, a work area, and a nice warming rack. At $359, it's reasonable and reliable for a larger grill.
However, if your wallet is a little more giving, this is the one that we would get. Any of the Napoleon Prestige Pro grills are going to be solid, but we really like this model (PRO500RSIB is the current one) for some of the small details that make grilling so much more enjoyable. Things like the easy moving casters and the lighting in the storage cabinet and within the grill itself are thoughtful and helpful. Still, the important part of any grill is the end product: your cooking. And this will not disappoint.
Invest in a cover if the grill is exposed as it makes it easier to keep it clean between grilling.
Utensils and Accessories
You can get all fancy with those grilling sets with their snazzy cases — and those do make nice housewarming gifts — but unless you are going to be traveling with them, skip them. Just get yourself some nice tongs. We prefer tongs to a fork because when you pierce the meat, all the juices come out. We have about 6 of the OXO 12-inch tongs on hand and they get used all of the time. Love that they can lock in the closed position as well so that you can keep things orderly in the kitchen. If you get the tongs with the covered heads, be sure to get the silicone as opposed to the nylon as the silicone can withstand a higher heat. Would suggest sticking with just the uncovered stainless steel though.
The Brine Bucket! We recommend brining before smoking any meats. You can use any large bowl that you have, but with all the chicken juices and the like flowing around we did invest in this little covered gem and it's been great. It's BPA-free, seals well, and while I wouldn't recommend using the handle to carry this while it's filled with brine and chicken, it is sturdy.