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Home Our Guide To Winter BBQing: Warm Comfort Food
Home Our Guide To Winter BBQing: Warm Comfort Food

Our Guide To Winter BBQing: Warm Comfort Food

Winter BBQ

Winter doesn’t mean you must say goodbye to barbecue’s smokey flavours and charred delights. In fact, winter BBQing presents a unique opportunity to bring the warmth and comfort of grilled and smoked foods into the heart of your home during the colder months.

Whether you’re a seasoned grillmaster or a beginner eager to experiment, our guide will walk you through the joys of winter grilling, offering tips on how to adapt your BBQ techniques for the cold weather, choosing the right equipment, and, most importantly, delivering a selection of hearty, comforting recipes designed to warm you from the inside out!

Tips For BBQing in Winter

With winter just around the corner, it’s essential to know how to get the most out of your BBQ during the colder months.

Here are some tips on how to BBQ in cold weather:

  1. Set up your BBQ early

    During the colder months, your BBQ can take a little longer to heat up than usual. Therefore, it’s important to warm up your grill early to ensure your food is cooked to perfection and doesn’t dry out.

  2. Be prepared with extra fuel

    As mentioned above, during winter, it takes a little longer for your BBQ to heat up due to the colder temperatures. Therefore, you may need extra fuel to reach the right temperature. So, have wood pellets, briquettes or an extra propane tank on hand when necessary.

  3. Maintain your BBQ

    Clean your BBQ after each use. Excess grease can be a fire hazard, and a build-up can also breed carcinogens.

  4. Invest in a thermometerWind protection

    Each time you lift the lid on your BBQ to look at your food, it loses heat and is exposed to the cold. When you do this, the smokey flavour you’re aiming for will simply evaporate.

    To avoid this and to keep your food moist and smokey, use the grill top thermometer to check on your food. Don’t open the lid until you’re confident your dish is ready to be plated.

  5. Wind protection

    Set up your BQQ in a location that’s shielded from the wind. Wind can lower the grill’s temperature and increase cooking time.

Winter Comfort Food BBQ Recipe Ideas

Are you planning to host a winter BBQ but unsure what comfort food to cook? 

Here are five delicious winter BBQ ideas:

  1. Grilled winter vegetables

    Cut thick slices of root vegetables, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, onions, and beets. Season them with olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme, or rosemary, and grill them until caramelised and tender. These vegetables make a perfect side dish or a vegetarian main course.

  2. BBQ beef brisket


    Slow-cooked beef brisket with a rich, smokey BBQ sauce is one of the best comforting meals to prepare on the BBQ. Start cooking it on the grill to get a nice char and smokey flavour, then wrap it up in aluminium foil and cook it at a lower temperature until it’s incredibly tender and juicy. Serve the beef with mashed potatoes and grilled root vegetables.

  3. Smoked macaroni and cheese

    Prepare your favourite macaroni and cheese recipe in a cast-iron skillet. Add a layer of grated cheese on top and place it on the grill over indirect heat. Close the lid and let it smoke for about 30 minutes for a deliciously smokey twist on this classic winter comfort food.

  4. Grilled shepherd’s pie

    Cook the meat filling in a cast-iron skillet on the grill, adding vegetables, herbs and a rich gravy. Top with mashed potatoes and cheese, then grill over indirect heat until the top is golden and crispy..

  5. Smokey grilled chilli

    Prepare a chilli con carne mixture and cook it in a pot over the grill, allowing the smoke to infuse the chilli with a deep, smokey flavour. Serve with sour cream, cheddar cheese, and chopped green onions, along with grilled bread on the side.

Hosting A Winter BBQ

So, you’ve decided to host a winter BBQ; what are some things you can do to make the process a lot easier?

Start preparing early

While this is a crucial tip, no matter what time of year you host a barbecue, it’s even more important during winter. Unlike summer, when your BBQ can enjoy the sun’s warmth before being fired up, in winter, it will need to take its time to heat up. This means that you’ll need to start up the BBQ about 15 to 20 minutes earlier than you usually would to allow it to reach its optimum temperature.

Preparing your BBQ early also includes preparing side dishes and marinating meat. This reduces the amount of time you spend in the kitchen, allowing you more time to spend time with your guests.

Prepare for the cold 

Much like warming up your BBQ earlier than you usually would, it’s also important to warm up your outdoor area to ensure your guests are cosy when they arrive. By investing in an outdoor gas heater, you’ll save money on electricity bills and give your guests a warm place to eat and chat, making the most of the BBQ party. If you have an outdoor fire pit, get it cranking before your guests arrive. Another way to prepare for the cold is to remind your guests to dress in warm, comfortable layers. You could also provide blankets to keep them toasty.

Menu planning 

No matter the time of year you host a BBQ party, one of the most important things to consider is creating a menu using seasonal ingredients. Create comfort dishes like chilli, shepherd’s pie and brisket and incorporate roasted vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, and sweet potatoes. You also want to choose recipes that don’t require constant attention, allowing you to spend more time with your guests.

All Your BBQ & Heating Needs Covered With Home Fires

BBQ parties are a great way to bring family and friends together over delicious food, no matter the time of year. However, if you’re planning on hosting a BBQ in cold weather, it takes some extra planning, such as preparing the BBQ early, ensuring you have extra fuel and providing a warm place for guests to sit and eat.

If you’re looking at getting a new BBQ this season or want to purchase your first one, look no further than Home Fires. We’ve got a range of BBQs from charcoal to grill and even electric. If you’re not sure which grill is right for you, contact us online or visit us in-store. We’re happy to help discuss your needs and provide you with suggestions on the best BBQ for you.

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