Among barbecue enthusiasts, gas grilling is often seen as the easier but less flavor-provoking alternative to grilling with charcoal. This characterization is true for the most part. But don't let that turn you off to gas grilling. It really is simpler and easier than grilling with charcoal, and while your food won't have that charcoal taste, it really can be delicious — especially if you follow these tips for better grilling with gas.
1. Include some liquid smoke in your marinade.
Since your food won't be getting any charcoal flavor on a gas grill, just add a little liquid smoke to your marinade or rub. Liquid smoke is not an artificial flavor or additive. It is just water that has been smoked and concentrated. Its flavor is quite authentic, and most people cannot even tell the difference between liquid smoke and real charcoal flavor once the food has been grilled.
2. Sear hot, cook low.
One of the best things about gas grills is that you can adjust the temperature almost instantly by turning a knob. Take advantage of this by searing your food at a high temperature and then turning the temperature down so your food can finish cooking on low. This will result in more evenly cooked meats with a better crust. If you just cook on high, you get an overcooked outside and undercooked middle. If you just cook on low, you won't get a nice char. The high-then-low method gives you the best of both worlds.
3. Preheat generously.
Don't rush the preheating process. While you don't have to wait for any coals to burn down, you do have to wait for the grill to get hot. You don't want just the air inside to get hot, either. You really want those racks hot so they leave nice grill marks. You should always preheat your gas grill for at least 20 minutes. Your patience will be rewarded.
4. Use the warming rack sparingly.
Most gas grills have a so-called warming rack. It's an upper rack where you're supposed to be able to set food to keep warm once it is cooked. Use this rack sparingly. It's okay to set something up there for a minute or two while you run to get a dish or while another piece of meat finishes cooking. But if you cook a burger and then leave it up there for 15 minutes, it's going to be dry.
If you follow the tips above, you'll have much better results with your gas barbecue. Enjoy!
To learn more, contact a resource like Thompson's Gas Inc.Share