Creating different grill zones is a fundamental part of upping your grill game. Thankfully, it’s also incredibly easy and the technique will soon have you perfecting a wide range of different foods.
So how do you get started with grill zones and what types of food are ideal for each? This installment of my Grill School has you covered.
Getting in the grill zone
Whether you prefer charcoal or gas, making different zones of heat is a cinch.
For those relatively new to grilling but have oven experience, think of creating grill zones like using a broiler versus basic roasting.
While food cooked directly over a broiler is utilizing direct heat, everything else in the oven will be roasting with ambient heat or indirect heat. The same principles are at work on your grill.
For charcoal, all you have to do is (very carefully) slide all of the coals to one side.
From there, half of your grill is going to be a perfect, direct-heating source while the rest will be better for slower cooking.
For gas grills, simply light the burners on one side and enjoy the same direct vs. indirect effect.
Even though it’s straightforward, learning the basics of creating grill zones is an easy way to expand your barbecue menu.
What to cook on different grill zones
It’s critical that you choose wisely when it comes to grilling in direct and indirect grill zones. The very flavor of your cookout depends on it.
Over direct heat, you’re going to want to cook items like thin strips of meat and direct zones are ideal searing steaks. Just remember to keep a close eye so you don’t overdo it.
You can also use direct zones for charring a wide range of veggies.
For most barbecues, however, the bulk of the cooking will be done over indirect heat. Slow-cooking thicker meats (like tri-tip) in your indirect zone will give you perfect cooking control and make your entire cookout smell sublime in the process.
Once you’ve learned the essentials of creating grill zones, you’ll be able to grill just about anything.
Grill Like Robyn
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