Top 5 BBQ Hacks for Summer


It’s June (when did that happened?), the sun is out, we can’t seem to stay away from beer gardens and best of all, it’s barbecue season!

For most of us, cooking alfresco means a battle to simultaneously avoid burning and undercooking sausages – nobody wants to poison their guests.

Sometimes we wonder if it is really even worth the stress…but then there’s that moment when you get it just right and have the perfectly grilled smoky chicken wing and you wish you could cook every meal on your barbecue.

These tips will make every barbecue you throw a success this summer – that’s right, you won’t have to say, “maybe just pick off the burnt parts” ever again.

Pick the right BBQ

This may be an obvious piece of advice, but this could be where most of your problems are coming from. So, if you want that smoky “barbecue” flavour, you need to have a charcoal barbecue – if that isn’t really important to you then you can stick to gas.

Also, it doesn’t hurt to make sure it has a lid, just to seal in that smoky, barbecue goodness. Don’t worry, we have put together a collection of the best barbecues and pizza ovens at the end of this post to help you pick the perfect one.

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Pick the right cooking utensils

Don’t struggle along with that slippery pair of tongs, which don’t actually grip anything. Give up and get rid of them… seriously. Invest in a good pair of cooking tongs – you’ll use them all year round - that will make turning your meat and veg a breeze.

Oh, and while you’re at it, make sure the spatula you intend to use won’t send your burger flying towards the floor (or nearest dog’s mouth).

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Don’t forget about temperature

If you’ve opted for a charcoal barbecue then you need to wait for it to heat up before you start grilling. When the coals are glowing and grey then you’re ready to go.

Bonus tip: control the temperature across the grill by putting all of the coals to one side. That way you can cook things at different temperatures according to your guests’ personal preferences.


Don’t forget about sides

It is easy to get caught up in grilling the meat and fish and totally forget about the pasta salad ingredients sitting in the fridge. A barbecue isn’t all about the mains; the sides give your guests choice (and something to nibble on if you underestimated how long it would take to cook up some sausages).

Remember, you want this barbecue to be a success and sides are key to that.


Mix it up a bit

Our buying guide below doesn’t just feature barbecues; many of the products are multi-functional BBQs or pizza ovens. These are perfect for adding some versatility into your summer meals.

Perhaps you’re planning a last minute soirée and don’t have time to get the barbecue heated up… that’s when you knock up some speedy but delicious pizzas – guests can personalise their pizzas and if you have children they can get involved by making their own. 



BBQ and Pizza Oven Buying Guide

Best For: Bargain Hunters





Aldi’s bestselling 3-in-1 pizza oven is back this summer and is on sale for just £99. The oven can also be used as a traditional BBQ or a smoker BBQ and includes a pizza stone and chrome plated cooking grill.

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This BBQ and Smoker from Vonhaus is a bargain at £129 and checks off both of our requirements from tip 1: charcoal, not gas and it has a lid to help make those super smoky creations.












Another 3-in-1 wonder from Waltons has the ability to work as a pizza oven, BBQ and smoker (it also has a shelf for your plates!) making it the perfect option for any budding chefs and experimentalists.

At just £149.99 this is a great way to ensure you can cook alfresco all summer long.


Best For: Small and Portable




The RoccBox

Roccbox is light enough to carry to your friends’ houses or the beach, and fires up to 500 degrees in under 15 minutes, meaning you can enjoy delicious homemade pizza anywhere, any time.



The Firepod is another versatile 3-in-1 pizza oven. When you purchase one, you are given a choice of accompanying cooking set to fit your dining style (you can purchase the other sets as separate accessories as well): The Hot lava stone is designed for sizzling meat and vegetables, the BBQ & Griddle set transforms your Firepod into a Barbeque and the pizza stone lets you cook up fresh pizzas all summer long.


Best For: Chefs in Training




Morso Outdoor Grill Forno

This small but chic addition to your patio daintily sits on three angular teak legs. The multifunctional cast iron cooking grill uses either charcoal or wood – hello smoky goodness – to let you cook up the perfect barbecue spread.





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Now, this is for those barbecue pros out there who’ll settle for nothing but the best. Who would have thought barbecuing could be so technologically advanced?

Sources, From Left to Right: 

Title Image: Helen Cathcart

Utensils: Via Pinterest 

Temperature: Design Sponge

Sides: Amy NeunsingerDonna Hay

Mix it up: Jamie Oliver , Jamie Oliver

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