Essential Disposable Bbq Cookout Tips

By: Barbecue Smoker Recipe Man

Not so many moons ago I wrote an article entitled "How To Have The Perfect Barbecue" in which I lambasted most of my friends for burning food on the BBQ and shared my essential tips for ensuring a perfect barbecue every time. An alternative way to put it is "How to BBQ without flames" because the secret to charcoal cooking (and indeed gas barbecuing) is sizzle and not flames.

The fat in the food is mobilised in the heat, drips onto the charcoal which creates the smoke to flavour the food. What we want is to hear the sizzle but no flames because flames will char the outside of the food leaving us at best eating something semi raw and at worst in bed with food poisoning. Easy huh?

Well it is quite easy if you've got a barbecue grill with adjustable rack height but if you're the true outdoor type travelling light you may well have a disposable charcoal barbecue tray. If you're not familiar with the disposable barbecue grill it's essentially an aluminum foil tray filled with lump wood charcoal and a light mesh cover. On top of the charcoal is a fuel impregnated mat which once lit is all that's needed to get the grill going making them ideal when travelling light or for cooking whilst on a picnic. One thing is clear though and that is there's no adjustment to the height of the grill and this means being careful not to burn the food, more on that in a minute.

The main advantages to this piece of equipment is that it's light and portable, it's really quick to get going and also really cheap so for a few dollars more you can really add a new dimension to you picnic. Having recommended trying one of these trays I think it's also important to point out the downsides of cooking on them so here are my essential tips for cooking on a disposable barbecue grill:-


1.Sometimes the lighting mat can fail so if satisfying your hunger is totally dependent on cooking then remember to take a firelighter as back up - and don't forget the matches!

2.Choice of food to cook is really important because there's not much flexibility with the heat and it doesn't last forever. Because of the lack of flexibility, avoid fatty foods such as sausages because these will simply spray fat onto the coals and cause flare ups. As I've already said, the flames will burn food but it's not just that, flames are wasted energy and your charcoal won't last as long. Try fish and steaks and other lean cuts of meat.

3.It's not an expensive piece of kit so don't expect an enamel grill. The best tip I can give is to brush the grill with oil before putting any food on it and this will prevent it from sticking especially if cooking fish.

One final point; It is as it says, "disposable" so if you've just finished your cookout, please look after your environment and dispose of the wreckage responsibly.

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