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The Ultimate Barbecue Buying Guide

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grilling chicken skewers

Capturing the taste of the meat is best performed with a barbecue. But how to find the perfect one for you?

The sun beaming onto your windows is a sure sign it’s high time you light up your trusted barbecue. In case grilling is, undoubtedly, your number one choice for cooking in the hotter months, then it’s of high importance to choose the perfect one for your own household.

Let’s check out some expert opinions to try and make up the best London outdoor cooker, taking into account ease of cleaning, specifications, type of fuel and a blend of other different factors.


Likewise most of the kitchen appliances, the price tag is not always a measure for high quality. You will be able to choose between fancy barbecues at around £3,000 or more, or settle at the cheapest possible miniature outdoor cookers for around £10. In any case, you are supposed to look for a number of different features and try to ignore the price tag for a while. You’re not going to buy one barbecue that’s too heavy for you, although it costs more – you’ll want to choose the one that’s perfectly OK to carry around.


Type of Fuel


You’ve got two main choices on what type of fuel you’ll choose for your future barbecue – charcoal and gas. Here you will have to consider your budget, too, as the cookers that run on gas are traditionally more expensive.


Barbecues that run on coal heat slower, because you need to take your time lighting up the coal and wait till the embers start glowing. Something that can actually speed up this process is a chimney starter.


In case you want to cheat the time and buy self-lighting coal, thing again – it’s stacked with chemicals to make it light faster, but it will also burn faster and you’ll be back to square one. Plus, the chemicals are something you don’t really want to come in contact with your food.


Generally, it will be more difficult to scrub a charcoal barbecue. Bear in mind that apart from the greasy food leftovers and stains, you will have to take care of the ashes and the burned coals, too. Cleaning a gas-fuelled one will save you a bit of this trouble after cooking.


What’s the biggest advantage of charcoal barbecues – definitely the taste of the ready meal. What really makes the difference is the slow cooking which keeps the moisture and it makes the meat more tender. Cheating the taste in gas barbecues with little packs of wood chips, wrapped in foil is possible, but it won’t be the same.


Undoubtedly, the best quality of gas barbecues is their speed cooking. It’s easy as pie to regulate the temperature which will give you more even cooking than charcoal ones. A more expensive cooker can give you the pleasure of using more than one burner – that will come in handy when cooking foods that have different preparation time.


The price of the fuel


Filling the gas cylinder separately and paying each time for the gas is possible. The normal price for gas is around 30 pounds for 13 kg – that will be sufficient enough for around 12 hours of grilling.


The average sized bag of charcoal, namely 7 kg will cost you up until 10 pounds and you will be able to prepare around three medium sized barbecues.


Additional features


A hood can make your barbecue cook food more evenly. The lid will help you cook the food from the inside, too. Imagine all the times when it was already burning outside, but the inside was still bloody red – fix it all with a simple barbecue lid.


Consider purchasing a food thermometer – it will help you determine the perfect temperature for cooking and see whether you’ve reached it easier.


You have to see what amount of food you will be cooking in the future, in order to determine the size of the barbecue. A family grill should be bigger than the standard size. Also, if you plan to host a lot of dinners with burgers and sliders, you will want to have more grill space. Consider purchasing a barbecue with an additional warming rack – it will keep the food warm before everything is done, so that everyone together can enjoy the meals. It will also help you, the cook, eat together with everyone.


A griddle will help you retain falling pieces of food, especially if they are small to stay safely on top of the rack.


The main problem, connected with scrubbing a gas barbecue is the leaking fat. Choose a model with a separated area for grease collection and you will decrease your cleaning problems afterwards considerably.


Storing the barbecue inside will not require anything additional to keep it dry and properly functioning. In case you will leave it outside, then invest in a fitted cover.


As you can see, there are many factors, apart from pricing, that can influence your choice when buying a barbecue. In case you are familiar with some proper models that do a great job, feel free to comment below. I wish you happy shopping and by all means, to find the perfect barbecue for a Sunday outdoor dinner with your friends and family!

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