These are the 12 BBQ grilling tools that no grill chef can be without. Most of the gadgets are basic, inexpensive, and not so fancy, but they will help you get to where you want to get…and that is grilling and barbecue perfection.
The first tip for using these gadgets is to have them within arm’s reach of your grill before you even start grilling. Organization is key to producing quality grilled foods.
1) Butane Lighter: Forget having to ever look for matches again. With a long handle and long nose, the butane lighter makes it safer, easier to use, and easier to find than matches.
2) Meat Thermometer: Having to repeatedly open the lid to your grill to check for done-ness causes you to lose heat, and adds to your cooking time. Have a digital roasting thermometer with a probe. This stays in the meat during cooking, and allows you to read the temperature without lifting the lid.
3) Chimney Starter: For those with a charcoal grill, a chimney starter is a must-have. All you do is place the charcoal in the top of the starter, wad up some newspaper and stick it in the bottom. Place the chimney starter on the food grate and ignite the newspaper. As soon as the coals are ready, just pour them into the grill.
4) Grill Tongs: These help you turn foods without poking them. The best grill tongs have long handles and spring hinges.
5) Timer: A standard kitchen timer is all you need to keep from over-cooking your grilled foods.
6) Basting Brush or Mop: Use a basting brush to apply sauces to meats without keeping the grill lid open for long periods of time. A paint brush with natural bristles works well also.
7) Metal Spatula: A long-handled spatula with a wide stainless steel blade. is one of the more essential grill items. Perfect for flipping large cuts of meat.
8) Long-Handled Fork: This helps to lift large cuts of meat or poultry from the grill. Never poke the meat until after it is done cooking, as the juices will run off into the grill.
9) BBQ Gloves: Flame-retardant gloves protect your hands when working with the hot grill and coals.
10) Wire Grill Brush: A stiff wire brush allows for a quick cleanup of food grates before the grill cools.
Often you can find many of these grill tools within one barbecue set. Buy a good grill set and keep the tools clean and ready for any time you’re ready to grill.
Billy Bristol is the editor and chief BBQ pitmaster for TexasBarbeques.com, an outdoor cooking and entertaining website devoted to backyard living. TexasBarbeques.com has been providing barbecue recipes, cooking tips, grilling techniques, and backyard entertainment ideas since 2005.