Tips & Tricks for Barbecuing in Cold & Snowy Weather

making barbecue in winter

Winter is at its peak and many parts of the world are laden with snow. What's the point of such cold weather if you cannot enjoy a delicious, finger-licking winter barbecue?

Why let a few degrees drop in temperature stop you from enjoying the delicious taste of grilled food? Despite the chilly weather outside, you can still have an amazing barbecue. Taking into consideration a few tips and tricks, you can easily grill some delicious meat on your own without spending extra energy and time.

Take a look at the list below to know what few tips you need to learn to make an amazing winter barbecue.

Tips for Successful Grilling in Winter

Most people love to grill all-round the year. Following these simple steps, you can have an amazing grilling experience even in chilly temperature.

1. Best Cold-Weather Clothing

In winters you will likely be in warmer clothes, of course, but when you plan to grill outside, you need to deck yourself in additional layers to protect yourself from the chilly weather. Wear slip-on shoes to easily move back and forth in the snow without the risk of falling.

Moreover, snow gloves will only keep your hands warm. They are not meant for grilling and barbecuing. For that purpose, you'll need heat-resistant grill gloves to successfully operate the grill without the risk of burning your hands or fingers.

However, keep in mind to avoid wearing scarfs or tassels because they catch fire easily. Instead, use beanies and ear-warmers to avoid accidental contact with fire.

2. Position of Cooking Area

position your barbecue against wind

The place where you plan to set up your grilling gear matters the most. With cold blasts of wind and snow around, make sure you choose a spot that is closer to your home to minimize your distance.

Also, take into account the direction of wind and pick a spot that offers maximum protection from cold gusts of wind, otherwise you'll have a hard time in lighting the fire and keep it burning.

Note that barbecuing in a closed place like garages can be hazardous. Always prefer to grill in open space, at a safe distance from combustible materials.

3. Shovel the Snow

Shovel all the snow to make a clear path to your grill. Make sure the place around the grill is clean from snow before ignition. Chilly temperature outside alone will keep temperature inside your grill low. Having extra snow around will make it more difficult to heat up the grill.

4. Preheat the Grill

When you have lightened your gas grill or ignited the fire, cover the grill and let it preheat for at least 15 to 20 minutes before starting the actual grilling process.

5. Check for Gas Leaks

If you are planning to grill with gas, check all the connections for possible gas leaks before use. Due to cold weather, the parts begin to crack or become brittle. It is safe to make sure that all control knobs turn smoothly without breaking.

6. Extra Fuel

burning wood for grill

Whether you are using a charcoal or gas grill, it will require extra effort and fuel to reach the desired temperature for grilling because of the cold. Always make sure that you have charcoal with low moisture level, or an extra propane tank around.

A simple trick is to place the grill perpendicular to the wind direction. This will keep the inner temperature of the grill controlled in the face of gusty winds.

7. Ceramic Cookware

The material of your utensils makes a lot of difference. Use ceramic cookware because they offer better heat retention. Not only that, but it will keep your food warm and away from the temperature outside. This also comes in handy when you're moving your food to the grill or taking it back inside after cooking.

8. Be Tolerant

Because of the cold and snowy weather, food generally takes longer than usual to be fully prepared. Depending on the temperature, it might take an average of between 10 to 30 percent extra time to cook.

Note that if you are planning to roast chicken or turkey, it will take a significantly longer time than expected.

9. Fast Cooking Cuts

grilling small meat cuts

You can squeeze the time of your grilling by using food that takes less time to cook. For example, thinner slices of meat and steak, chicken breast, and kabobs grill quickly.

It is wise to go for already tried recipes, like steaks, chops, burgers, shrimps etc. for efficient grilling and to minimize exposure to the cold weather.

10. Grill with Closed Lids

Since grilling in reduced temperatures takes longer than the usual time, it is better to grill with the lid closed. The more you keep the lid open, the more time it will take to barbecue your meat.

11. Avoid Peeking

Every time you lift the lid off the grill, the heat escapes rapidly leaving your grill cold. Avoid the urge of frequently peeping in on your food. It is good to use a digital temperature to know when the food is ready to be taken out. There are many charcoal grills that come with a built-in thermometer that allows you to keep track of your food from start till the end. Such grills come in very handy during cold and snowy weather.

12. Use Extra Lighting

It gets dark really quickly in the winter season. With dim lighting grilling becomes difficult. If money is not an issue, then buy a grill headlight, or use a flashlight or some other something similar to keep the place illuminated.

13. Quick Clean-up

Food chunks left on the grill when frozen becomes exceptionally difficult to remove. It is better to have a bowl of warm washing liquid and a sponge around for cleaning the grill after use.

Also, make sure to cover the grill after use to prevent dust and rusting.

Grilling in Winter has Never been Easier

Grilling and barbecuing is a year-round activity. However, the easy process of grilling steak, filets, chicken and everything in between becomes a mess in the winter season. With the help of a few easy tips and tricks, you can have a successful and enjoyable grilling experience even in freezing temperatures.

Amanda Braun
Amanda Braun


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