Buying a BBQ that’s right for you can be a rewarding purchase as we move into the warmer months. With so many different types available, the questions is, how do you choose the BBQ that’s right for you? The answer is to look at what you actually want to use it for, then sort through the features, varieties and brands to find one that meets your needs.
Just a fry up BBQ
If you like to simply fry meat and veges then a flat plate that heats the food from below will do the job that’s why they are so popular with sports clubs, you can get a large plate area that will cook lots of food for low cost. This is a quick way to cook but requires regular monitoring of the food. Some of these flat plate BBQs also have legs that fold up making them easy to take to the beach or camping.
If you like to roast your meat and veges then the Kettle type BBQ allows the hot air to circulate around the enclosed area is what you are looking for, you can get a plate for most of the BBQ’s as an ‘extra’ for when you want to fry. Roasting takes longer to cook but doesn’t require as frequent monitoring.
If you want to both fry and roast are a large range of BBQs that can do both but usually not as efficiently as a BBQ designed to do one job specifically. Most of these combination BBQs have 2 flat plates and a grill plate, this grill plate should not be replaced with a flat plate as it is required as part of the design to allow the hot gasses to circulate correctly. Some of the cheaper of these hooded BBQs have their hood made of a single layer of thin steel, this does not hold the heat in well and will make it difficult to get an evenly cooked roast. For best results try to get one with an insulated hood that has a thermometer. Most of the BBQs with lids are also able to be fitted with a rotisserie which can be battery or mains operated, these are good for cooking chicken or a roast.
What Grill’s Are Made From
Now let’s have a look at the grill material, these can be made of steel plate, usually found on flat plate BBQs, as they are usually quite thin they heat up quickly and are ready for use in a short time. Cast iron plates or grills are thicker and take longer to heat up but also the heat is spread more evenly throughout the plate for more even cooking. Both steel and cast iron plates will need to be maintained after use to prevent the plates from rusting. Enamel plates take longer than cast iron to heat up, give an even heat and food does not stick as much to them making them easier to clean, they also do not rust but care must be taken not to chip the enamel surface.
Other features to consider when buying a new BBQ, do you want gas or heat beads. Gas is generally quick and easy, whereas heat beads take longer to get going, but can enhance the flavour of the food. Do you want the BBQ to be portable? A portable BBQ unit is great if you like to have family picnics or enjoy camping. Portable units are normally sold with additional stands or you can sit them on top of a table. These units can be grill or flat plates for frying.
So spend some time researching, because the right BBQ can be a rewarding addition to your outdoor entrainment area. Here is our handy shopping list of features to consider.
Printable version Shopping List BBQ Features
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