Five Most Common Grilling Mistakes

Close-up of a trimed smoked beef brisket.

Check out this advice from Viewpoints to make sure your prime rib, crusted in garlic, rosemary and horseradish, tastes as great as it looks.

What if some of your go-to grilling techniques were actually compromising the flavor of your food? Not a fun thing to think about is it? To make that steak, or whatever you’re cooking, absolutely perfect take a look at five common grilling mistakes to make sure you’re grilling like a pro.

1. Marinating meat in BBQ sauce

It seems like an obvious step in barbecuing, but chefs recommend marinating meat in a dry rub and adding barbecue sauce when the meat is almost done cooking. Because barbecue sauce has such a high sugar content, it has a tendency to burn in the cooking process if it’s added too early.

2. Opening and closing the lid of your grill

It’s tempting to constantly check to make sure your meat isn’t burning, but opening the lid will interrupt and slow down the cooking process. If you are trying to thoroughly cook a large piece of meat (ribs, chickens, etc.), make sure your grill is at the appropriate temperature after you fire it up, and then leave it alone as much as possible.

3. Cutting into your meat while it’s on the grill

Aren’t sure if your meat is thoroughly cooked? Invest in a meat thermometer instead of slicing into meat right on the grill. Also, be careful not to pierce meat with a barbecue fork when turning it or removing it from the grill, or those delicious juices will run right out.

4. Eating your meat as soon as you remove it from the grill

Even after you remove meat from the grill, it will continue to cook for a few minutes – don’t interrupt that process. Plus, if you cut into it too soon, those essential juices will run right out of the meat and you’ll be left with a dry cut of meat. According to the Serious Eats Food Lab, resting time depends on the thickness of the meat. For a 1 ½ inch thick steak, you should wait about 10 minutes.

5. Not cleaning your grill – or cleaning it too late

Most experts recommend cleaning the grill while it’s still hot, before remnants have dried onto the grill. A clean grill will prevent foods from sticking to it and also keep last month’s food off your dinner. Keep your grill brush handy for cleaning or even use your tongs and a piece of crumpled foil.


Marly Schuman Marly Schuman (84 Posts)

Marly Schuman is a former content specialist at Viewpoints.