If you love to grill like me, the snowy winter isn’t going to stop me from putting a deliciously grilled steak or burger on the table for dinner! While I’m slowly winterizing everything outside every fall the grill is about the only thing that will remain on the back deck every winter.
Prior to getting into the 9 tips I’ve recently added an inexpensive green house to my back deck. This has been a great addition and I can’t explain how happy I am with it.
This green house is basically a temporary smoke house and it has worked out beautifully. Not only does it keep me and my cook dry but it also helps keep me warm as it blocks the wind.
As long as you open everything up until you have completed the clean burn it works like a charm! If you do find that it is a little to smokey I also recommend installing a dryer vent on the roof.
This allows the smoke to escape easily and can easily be installed by sandwiching the roof between two boards, cutting a 4″ hole with a hole saw and screwing the dryer vent down.
1. While the Big Green Egg and my gas grill are usually the only thing on the deck come December the first thing I usually do is wheel them over closer to the back door.
This allows me to grill easier by just taking a few steps into the frigid air and then easily being able to jump back inside the warm house. Always be careful the grill isn’t to close to your siding though as many have made the rookie mistake of melting it.
2. While repositioning the grill closer to the door it is also worth paying attention to which direction you receive wind gusts. It may be worth a few more steps to put the grill around the corner of the house to avoid these wind gusts.
This will also help with avoiding any drifts which will in return most likely require more manual labor with the dreaded shovel.
3. Prior to starting up the grill in the middle of winter always take the time to get yourself ready. For me, I grill so frequently in the winter that I keep a pair of snow boots, gloves, coat and even a hat right at the back door.
One other thing that should be noted is that winter gloves are NOT heat resistance gloves so don’t go grabbing your cast iron cookware without throwing on your heat resistant gloves first.
4. Another thing I always recommend doing prior to grilling on a cold winter day is simply shovel yourself a path to the grill. I recommend keeping a shovel right outside the back door for ease of use, at least if you think you are going to grill as frequent as I do in the winter.
This is also key to assisting with a slip free pathway to the grill. That last thing you want is to slip with a plate full of freshly cooked meat!
5. Prior to lighting the grill or opening the lid always brush off all the snow. The snow is added weight and if you have an older propane grill the handle may not be strong enough to lift the extra weight.
So take the extra minute to brush the snow off the top to prevent damages to the grill. If you for some reason don’t have gloves to do this a car brush also works great to remove the snow.
6. When firing up the grill or Big Green Egg to start grilling in the winter always expect it to take more time. With the frigid cold in the winters the grills can take another 5 to 10 minutes to heat up. Once this is done though it is then game on!
7. While I have a little table to the left of my grill and Big Green Egg I don’t really use it in the winter outside of storage. If your kitchen isn’t right next to the door to the deck I recommend finding some sort of lay down area inside and next to the door.
This is great for setting the uncooked meat on while the grill is heating up and inversely setting the cooked food on while you take your snow filled shoes off, which also prevents the dreaded wet snow tracking.
8. While grilling in the middle of the winter it is also best to keep the lid closed as much as possible. This is for obvious reasons as every time you open the lid the heat escapes which will take longer to reheat with it being super cold out.
9. With it being so cold out in winter, when you are grilling you will most likely also use more fuel. It’s recommended to have a back up tank of propane filled and ready and if you are smoking you should have a backup bag of lump charcoal on hand in case you need to refuel.
There is nothing worse than grilling and running out of heat! Although, in most cases you can save the meat by either putting it in the oven or on the stove to finish it off.
I hope you found some of these tips useful. Don’t ever hesitate to fire up the grill in the middle of winter to enjoy a nice meal!
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