In the summertime when the weather is high, it’s tradition to gather friends and loved ones for a meal in the great outdoors. Not only is it a great way to catch up with each other, but cooking outdoors is a great way to keep that extra heat outside our homes on those sweltering summer days.
So what options are open to us? Let’s take a look at a couple of ways to cook outdoors that will make you look like an old master.
Grills: The Old Standby
Naturally, the good old-fashioned grill is the golden standard for outdoor cooking equipment. Though even then, there are plenty of options to choose from and it’s hotly debated which one reigns supreme.
On the low-tech end, there’s the classic charcoal grill. Grilling doesn’t get much simpler than that. Though the propane grill has supplanted them as most grillmasters tool of choice.
That said, emerging options like pellet and egg-shaped ceramic grills have started to steal some of that spotlight, so you still have plenty of choices to pick from.
The Rocket Stove
If you need to cook without electricity, propane, or charcoal, the rocket stove is the way to go.
These are hot burning stoves that use small sticks for fuel. They burn the wood in a small compartment beneath a vertical chimney. With nowhere else to go, the flame rises directly upward, creating a strong, steady heat source.
They’re extremely compact and often lightweight, making them a great option for camping. And while you can buy them for the sake of convenience, what’s really interesting about them is how easy they are to improvise.
DIY rocket stoves can be made out of old kitchenware that’s past its prime, cinderblocks, or even a tin can with a little effort and know-how. This not only makes them a compact cooking method, but also a fun summer project to try out.
If you have the time to spare, vertical propane smokers like those made by Masterbuilt are another popular option. These devices take the old-fashioned smokehouse and reduce it down into a compact size that anyone could find room for on their back porch.
The way they work is that they have a propane-fueled heating element in the base, which causes a pan of quality wood chips to smoke and smolder, imbuing your food with that classic smokehouse flavor.
They do take some setting up before use, however. Seasoning your Masterbuilt Propane Smoker for the first time is quite simple though, and the taste is well worth it.
Cook Outdoors Like a Pro
Humanity has been refining its outdoor cooking methods for as long as cooking has been a thing, so the best techniques will always be a matter of debate. But with these options open to you, you can find a way to cook outdoors in almost any situation, be it a camping trip, an apartment balcony, or a backyard barbecue.
Now all you need for your cookout is a menu. For some ideas that are sure to get your mouth watering, be sure to keep up with all of our latest summertime recipes.