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Tips to BBQ Like a Pro

Tips to BBQ Like a Pro

​Steak reigns supreme on the BBQ! But how do you keep them tender and juicy? When’s the perfect time to add seasoning? From selecting to cooking your cut of meat, here are 10 tips to ensure you grill perfect steaks on the BBQ—every time.

Advice from my Butcher - Bring your steaks to room temperature

1Look for steaks that are generously marbled

Not only should you look for the right cut of meat, you should also select pieces that are more marbled—in other words, meat that has plenty of white fibres that will melt during cooking. These pieces will be much more tender, juicy, and delicious.

2Bring your steaks to room temperature

Remove meat from the fridge up to one hour before cooking. Although not essential, this helps reduce thermal shock and ensures steaks cook evenly—so every piece will be hot and perfectly rare in the middle.

Advice from my Butcher - Marinade

3Pick the right ingredients

Marinades made with an acidic base—like wine, vinegar, or citrus juice—are perfect for tenderizing meat. Kiwi and pineapple also give a tasty exotic twist to summer steaks! For the best results, marinate beef for at least 6 hours.

4Salt your steaks before cooking

Some budding chefs think that adding salt to steak makes it less juicy. Don’t believe the myth! A little salt—about ¼ tsp—added a half hour before cooking is the ideal way to ensure your meat stays juicy and delicious.

Advice from my Butcher - Season only mid-way through cooking

5Get your BBQ ready

Steaks will stick to a dirty grill, so be sure to brush your BBQ and wipe it with a paper towel soaked in oil before cooking. A simple tip that makes all the difference! Make sure the grill is good and hot before adding your steaks; you should hear a sizzle. If not, your BBQ isn’t warm enough. Just remove the meat and wait a few minutes more.

6Season only mid-way through cooking

Add spices too soon and the heat from the BBQ will diminish their taste. Bad idea! Wait till you’re about mid-way through cooking to add seasoning. Note, too, that dry rubs are less flavourful on thick cuts of meat. For best results, marinate steaks in liquid beforehand.

7On one side and the other

Your meat will be tender if you only flip it once. You’ll get beautiful grill marks on each side without mangling your cut.

8Treat your meat with care

While cooking, be sure not to press on steaks with a spatula, as this will cause them to lose vital juices and result in steaks that aren’t as flavourful.

Advice from my Butcher - Let steaks rest before serving

9Touch steaks for doneness

No need to slice steaks open to see if they’re done. Just touch each piece or take its temperature. If using a thermometer, be sure to insert in the fleshiest part of the meat, horizontally, avoiding contact with the bone. Keep in mind that temperatures will go up 2 to 3ºC while steaks rest.

- Rare: Slight resistance to pressure from finger, seared on the outside, 75% red inside.
Temperature: 55°C or 130°F
- Medium-rare: Slight resistance to pressure from finger, seared on the outside, 50% red inside.
Temperature: 63°C or 145°F
- Medium: Medium resistance to pressure from finger, blood droplets pearl on surface when touched, 25% pink inside.
Temperature: 71°C ou 160°F
- Well done: Firm to the touch, surface and inside completely brown.
Temperature: 77°C ou 170°F

10Let steaks rest before serving

Resist the urge to serve steaks hot off the grill. They’re not quite ready yet! Let them rest at room temperature for a third of the time it took to cook, allowing them to reabsorb their juices and reach optimal tenderness. You can cover your steaks with foil to ensure they stay warm.