Aahhh...sweet, sweet, summertime. It’s the season when we try to do as many things outside as possible -- even cooking! And while I’ve been known to stand outside in freezing temps in the dead of an Ohio winter just to get a little char on something, grilling is much more pleasant during these warmer months. In addition to having agreeable weather, having the right tools for any job always makes for a more pleasurable experience as well. That’s why I’m sharing 3 of my favorite grilling gadgets that will make cooking on the grill so easy it’ll be your “go-to” method for preparing fresh, healthy meals this season:
Wireless Bluetooth meat thermometer -- Whether you’re cooking indoors or out, if you’re cooking any kind of meat, a thermometer is key. Digital thermometers are marketed for outdoor grilling and smoking, but they can be extremely useful in your kitchen if you cook a lot or have a big family. Wireless thermometers are ideal for baking, roasting, grilling, smoking, candy-making, brewing, and any other cooking process. Digital thermometers are the ultimate multitasking gadgets for a range of cooking processes.
Some of the benefits of using a Bluetooth thermometer include:
Ability to monitor food in your kitchen while doing other things
Easy access to information on proper food temperatures through a connected Bluetooth app
Portability for any cooking job indoors or outdoors
Ability to use separate probes to prevent cross-contamination
Superior performance on outdoor smokers, barbecue equipment, and grills
The best digital wireless thermometers now offer artificial intelligence apps that automatically cook any meat to the USDA-recommended safe temperature, but you can always manually override the presets.
Grill Mats -- Like the idea of being able to barbecue without the mess? Grill mats are a game changer!! Grill mats bring ease to the process of grilling on the barbecue and eliminate the worry of food falling through the grates. This means you can grill delicate, small foods such as vegetables, fish, cheese, eggs, and much more! You can even add sauces and nothing will drip through. A grill mat will also allow meats to hold their juices so you can still achieve that deliciously rich barbecue taste. A non-stick grill mat is a fiberglass cloth covered with a non-stick, heat-resistance coating of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). They can be used for charcoal, electric, and gas grills. They are also super easy to clean and dishwasher safe, so you can use them again and again!
PTFE has been officially approved by the FDA as safe and suitable for temperatures below 500 degrees. Barbecue grill mats will even improve safety around the barbecue because they don’t produce any ‘flame up’ or spitting coals, which can often happen when grilling on grates.
Overall, a barbecue grill mat is much easier to use than a grill pan and is more effective than aluminium foil that rips when you flip your food. Simply lay your grill mats directly onto the grill grates on your barbecue and place your food on top to start grilling! It’s as simple as that; you don’t even need to add any butter or oil to the mat.
-- You know those bamboo skewers at the back of your kitchen drawer that you always forget to soak before you toss them on the grill? Stop using those! For one thing, splinters in food is no fun. For another, good skewers just make life easier.
I hated grilling with skewers until I got a decent set. Now I suggest getting a couple different types of sets. Some have barbed tips to ensure nothing comes off when you flip them, and you can fit enough meat for two on one skewer. Sometimes you want a straight skewer, though, so that’s why you need more than one set.
As with almost everything in life, having the right tools makes any job go more smoothly and easily, and today’s technology is definitely allowing us to work smarter, not harder. If you’re like me and see a summer full of grilled or barbequed food in your future, invest in some of the new gadgets out there that are making life easier. Prices vary greatly on almost all of these products, but more expensive doesn’t always mean better quality. With a little internet research, it’s easy to get the best gadgets at fair prices. Happy summer grilling from all of us at Bellisari’s!