There's something inherently magical about gathering friends and family around a crackling BBQ, sharing laughter and stories as delicious, chargrilled food sizzles and fills the air with mouth-watering aromas. Undeniably, barbecuing holds a special place in the British summertime ritual, offering a unique outdoor cooking experience that enhances the flavours of our favourite dishes and brings people together in beautiful gardens under the warm sun. As the BBQ season draws near, enthusiastic grillers and novices alike might find themselves pondering the best ways to implement their grilling skills and create unforgettable feasts.

At Beales, we understand the importance of selecting the right BBQ equipment to suit your specific needs and preferences, so that you can enjoy extraordinary alfresco dining experiences all summer long. Our comprehensive BBQ guide is designed to help you navigate the world of outdoor grilling, offering essential information and expert advice on how to choose, use, and maintain the perfect BBQ for your culinary endeavours. From discussing the pros and cons of various types of grills and exploring essential BBQ accessories to sharing helpful grilling techniques and maintenance tips, Beales is here to support your journey as you master the art of outdoor grilling and create memorable, flavourful moments in your own garden oasis.

1. Selecting the Ideal BBQ Type

With several types of BBQs on the market, it's essential to understand their unique characteristics to find the perfect grilling equipment for your needs. Consider the following popular options:

  • Charcoal BBQs: For those who cherish the authentic, smoky flavour that only charcoal grilling can provide, a traditional charcoal BBQ is the ideal choice. However, charcoal grills require a longer preparation time, involving lighting the charcoal and waiting for it to reach the perfect cooking temperature.
  • Gas BBQs: Gas grills offer a speedy and efficient outdoor cooking experience, with adjustable temperature controls ensuring precision grilling. While they may not produce the same intense smoky flavour as charcoal, gas BBQs provide an excellent balance between ease of use and flavour enhancement.
  • Electric BBQs: Designed for those with limited outdoor space or restricted access to open flames, electric grills are a convenient and easy-to-use grilling option. Powered by electricity, these grills heat up quickly and offer relatively consistent temperatures, but may lack the rich, smoky flavour of other BBQ types.

2. Essential BBQ Accessories and Tools

Having the right tools and accessories can enhance your grilling experience and make it as seamless as possible. Don't forget to invest in these essential items:

  • Tongs: Long-handled, heat-resistant tongs are crucial for safely turning and manoeuvring food on the grill.
  • Spatula: A sturdy, heat-resistant spatula with a long handle will make flipping burgers and other delicate items much easier.
  • Grill brush: A grill brush with firm bristles is necessary for cleaning grates and maintaining the optimal performance of your BBQ.
  • Meat thermometer: Ensure safe cooking temperatures by investing in a reliable meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of grilled items.
  • Protective cover: To keep your BBQ in prime condition when not in use, purchase a protective, weather-resistant cover designed to fit your grill.

3. Mastering Grilling Techniques

Honing your grilling skills and adopting key techniques will elevate your outdoor culinary pursuits. Consider the following best practices:

  • Preheat your grill: Allowing your BBQ to heat up properly before cooking will ensure even heat distribution and prevent food from sticking to the grates.
  • Clean and oil the grates: Clean grates using a grill brush, and lightly coat them with cooking oil using a paper towel to create a non-stick surface.
  • Create heat zones: Especially when using charcoal or gas grills, arrange your fuel or burners to create separate direct (high heat) and indirect (low heat) cooking zones to control your cooking process effectively.
  • Learn to control flare-ups: Temporarily moving your food to the indirect heat zone when flare-ups occur will prevent charring and maintain a consistent cooking temperature.
  • Rest your meat: After grilling, allow your meat to rest for a few minutes to allow the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more tender and flavourful dish.

4. Proper BBQ Maintenance

For the longevity and optimal performance of your BBQ, proper maintenance is crucial. Follow these general tips:

  • Regular cleaning: After each use, clean your grill's grates and empty grease traps to prevent flare-ups and maintain hygiene.
  • Deep cleaning: At least once a season, perform a thorough cleaning of your BBQ, including burners and the interior, to remove built-up grease and debris.
  • Store properly: Always protect your grill from harsh weather and moisture by using a protective cover or storing it in a shed or garage when not in use.


Embracing the art of outdoor grilling can elevate your alfresco dining experiences, creating memories filled with laughter, camaraderie, and superbly cooked dishes. By selecting the right BBQ type for your needs, investing in essential tools and accessories, mastering grilling techniques, and maintaining your equipment, you'll be well on your way to enjoying extraordinary backyard feasts for years to come. Check out the Beales department store online for a wide selection of BBQs, tools, and accessories to enhance your outdoor cooking experience. Happy grilling!

October 23, 2023 — Paul Masterson