Newell International Industry Co., Ltd.

Newell International Industry Co., Ltd.


Summer is here, and everyone is heading out of their kitchens and onto the deck to do some grilling. Or is it barbecuing? Does it matter? Is there a difference? It turns out, even though we tend to use the words “barbecue” and “grill” interchangeably, there is a difference between barbecuing and grilling. And, if you’re a true outdoor chef, it really does matter!


This is what most people do in their backyards for dinner. This is also what most of us mean when we say “barbecue.” Grilling is cooking foods hot and fast (usually 500-550 degrees Fahrenheit, or higher). It is usually done over direct heat. Meats like steaks, pork chops, seafood, hamburgers, and hot dogs are great for grilling. Many vegetables and some fruits are also great cooked on the grill. Grilling is done over direct heat, where the flame (either gas or charcoal) is directly below the meat.


Barbecuing is cooking foods low and slow. Barbecuing is usually used for cuts of meat like ribs, pork shoulder, beef brisket, or whole chickens or turkeys. These types of meats tend to be tougher, and need the low, slow heat of a barbecue (or a slow-cooker) in order to get them good and tender. Barbecued food is cooked over very low heat (usually 225 degrees Fahrenheit or lower) for a very long time (hours, or even all day long). Barbecuing is often done with indirect heat, where the heat source is connected to the chamber where the meat is held, but the meat is not directly over the flames like on a grill. Charcoal or wood are commonly used as the heat source for barbecue. Different types of wood give off different smoky flavors that the meat can absorb. The best barbecue chefs pride themselves on a very long cooking time to get the tenderest, most flavorful meat.


Don’t let the name fool you – barbecue sauce can be used with either barbecuing or grilling. Marinades are often used for foods that will be grilled. The meat (or veggies or fruits) soak in a marinade for anywhere from one hour to overnight. The meat absorbs the flavors and some of the liquid from the marinade. The marinade is discarded, and the meat is cooked (hot and fast) on the grill, resulting in a very juicy, flavorful meal. Spices can be used in either cooking method. Many barbecued foods are treated with a dry rub of spices before they are cooked. This method can also be used for grilling, or simply shake on your favorite seasonings (or even just a bit of salt and pepper) for some more flavor before putting the meat on the grill.

Will you be barbecuing or grilling this summer?

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