We all know that summers are synonymous with the grilling and BBQ season. Therefore, we have developed this brief yet comprehensive grilling guide to make this time of the year a memorable one.
In this guide, we will provide you with all the important instructions that you need to nail everything to perfection. We have divided this guide into subsections for ease in understanding and follow.
This time around, you will go to your nearest farmer’s market with a whole different perspective on what you can achieve with your grill.
So let’s get to it without further ado!
How to grill beef
You need to cook your burgers at high and direct heat, and the time required for this process is 3 – 5 minutes per side. The temperature inside should be 140F for medium done burgers. And make sure that you don’t press your burgers down on their patties while cooking. By doing this, you will keep those delicious juices inside.
Do your hot dogs at direct and medium-high heat, and they shouldn’t take more than 5 – 7 minutes. You can turn them occasionally.
Steaks (0.75 to 1-inch thick)
The steaks this thick are usually flanks or New York strips. You can grill them over direct and medium-high heat for 3 – 5 minutes a side. The temperature on the inside has got to be 130F if you want them to be medium-rare. And to get the awesome sear only turn your steaks once right in the middle of the entire cooking time.
Steaks (1 to 1.5-inch thick)
These steaks include rib-eyes or porterhouse steaks. And you can grill them over direct but medium-high heat at first and then grill them covered at the same heat. The direct grilling time needs to be 3 – 5 minutes a side, and the indirect grilling time is 4 – 6 minutes a side. The temperature here again should be around 130F if you are looking for medium-rare. You can increase the cooking time to 8 – 10 minutes for the steaks that are thicker than 2 inches.
How to grill pork
For the baby-backs, you should cook them indirect or covered at medium-high and then directly at the same heat. The indirect cooking time needs to be 25 – 30 minutes, while the direct cooking time should be 4 – 5 minutes. Looking for that caramelized finish but also want to prefer the food from burning? You should apply barbecue sauce in the final five minutes of your cooking time.
Chops (0.5 to 1-inch thick)
Such chops need to be cooked at direct and medium-high heat for at least 3 – 5 minutes a side for the bone-in part and 2 – 5 minutes a side for the boneless part. The ideal internal temperature here is 145F.
Chops (1 to 1.5-inch thick)
The chops this thick should also be cooked at direct and medium-high heat for 6 – 8 minutes a side for the bone-in part and 5 – 7 minutes a side for the boneless part. You need to keep its internal temperature around 145F.
Bone-in loin roast (4 - 5 lbs)
For a loin roast with bones in and weighing 4 – 5 lbs, the grilling should be done on direct and medium-high heat for 10 – 15 minutes and then on indirect and medium-high heat for 1 – 1.5 hours. You can turn in occasionally if you want, and the temperature on the inside of the meat here must be 145F.
Boneless loin roast (3 - 3½ lbs)
The boneless loin roast that weighs 3 – 3.5 lbs needs to be cooked over direct and medium-high heat for 10 – 15 minutes and then over indirect and medium-high for 30 – 40 minutes. 145 Fahrenheit is the ideal core temperature, and you can turn the piece occasionally.
You should cook the sausage links over direct and medium-high heat for 10 – 15 minutes, and you can turn them occasionally. The recommended core temperature is 145F for pork links and 165F for chicken links. You can grill a sausage coil easily by running a couple of long skewers through the coil (crisscross pattern), and then cook as we have just mentioned. You just need to turn them once.
Tenderloins should be done over direct and medium-high first for 6 – 8 minutes and then over indirect and medium-high heat for 10 – 12 minutes. Their core temperature should be exactly 145F, and you can occasionally turn them.
How to grill lamb
Chops (0.5 to 1-inch thick)
The chops of this size are best done over direct and high heat for 3 – 5 minutes a side to reach a core temperature of 130F for a medium-rare.
Chops (1 to 1.5-inch thick)
Again, these chops should be done over direct and high heat but for 4 – 6 minutes a side. Their temperature on the inside here again should be around 130F for a medium-rare.
Butterflied boneless leg (1 to 1.5-inch thick and 3 to 3.5 lbs)
You should grill this piece over direct and medium-high heat first for 4 – 5 minutes a side and then over indirect and medium-high heat for 15 – 20 minutes. If you’re cooking a medium-rare, 130F is sufficient. If you have the leg rolled, then you can increase the indirect time to 20 – 30 minutes.
Rack (1 to 1.5 lbs)
You can cook racks over direct and medium-high heat for 3 – 5 minutes first and then grill it over indirect and medium-high heat for 10 – 15 minutes. The core temperature of racks should be 130F for a medium-rare.
How to grill poultry - chicken
Chicken breasts (skinless and boneless)
These should be done over direct and medium heat for 5 – 6 minutes at a core temperature of 160F.
You should grill cutlets over direct and medium heat for 2 – 3 minutes a side, and their internal temperature should be 160F.
Chicken pieces with bones
It is better to grill these pieces of chicken over indirect and medium for 40 – 50 minutes. The temperature must not exceed 165F when you are done.
Chicken thighs (skinless and boneless)
You should grill the thighs over direct and medium heat for 4 – 5 minutes and just turn them once. The internal temperature to aim here is 165F.
Wings should be grilled over indirect and medium heat for 25 – 30 minutes, and their inside temperature should be 165F. You can turn them occasionally as well.
Whole chicken (3.5 to 4 lbs)
The best practice to grill a whole chicken is over indirect and medium heat for 45 – 75 minutes. The temperature on the inside must be 165F right at the center of the thigh.
How to grill poultry - turkey
For turkey burgers, grilling should be done over direct and medium-high heat for 5 – 7 minutes a side. You should maintain 165F temperature.
Cooking the turkey cutlets over direct and medium heat for 2 – 3 minutes a side is the best practice. And its internal temperature needs to be 160F.
How to grill seafood
Cooking scallops over direct and high heat is recommended and make sure that none of your seafood sticks to the bottom. The grilling time of scallops is 1 – 2 minutes a side.
Cook your shrimps over direct and high heat for 1 – 2 minutes a side. And make sure that you thread the skewers for convenient turning.
Fish fillets/steaks (0.75 to 1-inch thick)
The grilling time for fish like salmon, mahi-mahi, and striped bass is the ideal technique to grill it over direct and high heat for 3 – 4 minutes per side. If you have the fillet covered with foil or something, then the grilling time will be 20 – 30 minutes (indirect).
Whole fish (0.75 to 1 lbs)
For the whole fish, grilling should be over direct and high heat for 4 – 5 minutes a side. And again, if you have foiled the fish, then the grilling time is 20 – 30 minutes (indirect).
Whole fish (large fillets, 1 to 3 lbs)
If you are grilling a large piece of fish, then you need to place it over indirect and medium-high heat for 30 – 40 minutes. Make sure that you have foiled it, or it will tear when you turn it.
How to grill kebabs
Poultry, beef, and pork
For the kebabs made of these meats, the grilling time is 4 – 6 minutes over direct and medium-high heat. You can turn them occasionally, but for the best results, you can cut the meat into cubes of 1 – 1.5-inch size.
Shrimp and scallops
These kebabs won’t take much time when you grill them directly over high heat. They shouldn’t take more than 1 – 2 minutes a side.
There are different grilling times for different food items. Understanding how to grill these items is important. And knowing how much heat and time each of them require is critical too. If you follow the guidelines that we have mentioned above, you will end up making some delicious grilling recipes; ones that professionals will be proud of!