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Meat-Up in Memphis

T-Shirts & More T-Shirts & More
Order men's and women's T-Shirts, Sweatshirts, Aprons, Mugs, Caps, Tote Bags, Flasks, and more, all imprinted with the Pitmaster Club logo. There's even a spiral bound journal where you can make notes on your cooks.

Cool Embroidered Shirt Cool Embroidered Shirt
This beautifully embroidered shirt is the same one Meathead wears in public and on TV. It's wash and wear and doesn't need ironing (really!), but it is a soft cottonlike feel. Choice of four colors and both men's and women's.

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BBQ Stars


Some Of Our Favorite
Tools And Toys

These are not ads. These are products we love and highly recommend. Click here to read more about our medals and what they mean.



Surely you know somebody who loves outdoor cooking who deserves a gift for the holidays, birthday, anniversary, or just for being wonderful. There he is, right in the mirror! Here are our selections of best ideas, all Platinum or Gold Medalists, listed by price.

Click here to see our list of Gold Medal Gifts

Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here's A Great Buy!

maverick PT55 thermometer

A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!

Click here for more info on the Maverick PT-55 Waterproof Instant-Read Thermometer Review shown above. It may be the best value in a thermometer out there

If you have a Weber Kettle, you need the Slow 'N' Sear

slow n sear

The Slow 'N' Sear turns your grill into a first class smoker and also creates an extremely hot sear zone you can use to create steakhouse steaks.

Click here for our article on this breakthrough tool

Bring The Heat With Broil King Signet's Dual Tube Burners

the good one grill

The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King's proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Click here to read our complete review

The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One

the good one grill

The Good-One Open Range is a charcoal grill with an offset smoke chamber attached. It is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker. The grill sits low in front and doubles as a firebox for the smoke chamber which is spliced on above and behind so it can work like a horizontal offset smoker only better. By placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side, Open Range produces even temperature from left to right, something almost impossible to achieve with a standard barrel shaped offset.

Click here to read our complete review

Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

Griddle And Deep Fryer All In One

The flat top does the burgers and the fryer does the fries. Use the griddle for bacon, eggs, and home fries. Or pancakes, fajitas, grilled cheese, you name it. Why stink up the house deep frying and spatter all over? Do your fried chicken and calamari outside. Blackstone's Rangetop Combo With Deep Fryer does it all. Plus it has a built in cutting board, garbage bag holder, and paper towel holder. An additional work table on the left side provides plenty of counter space.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order

Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

The Pit Barrel Cooker May Be Too Easy

The PBC has a rabid cult following for good reason. It is absolutely positively without a doubt the best bargain on a smoker in the world. Period. This baby will cook circles around the cheap offset sideways barrel smokers in the hardware stores because temperature control is so much easier. Best of all, it is only 9 delivered to your door!

Click here to read our detailed review and the raves from people who own them

The Swiss Army Knife Of Thermometers


The smart folks at ThermoWorks have finally done it: The Swiss Army Knife of thermometers, two in one. Start with the industry standard food thermometer, the Thermapen MK4, (Platinum Medal winner) truly instant (2 to 3 seconds) precise (+ or – 0.7°F). Then they built in an infrared thermometer ideal for measuring the temps of pizza stones, griddles, and frying pans (also great for finding leaks around doors and windows in your house).

Click here to read our test results and comprehensive review and why it won our Platinum Medal.

Compact Powerful Sear Machine For Your Next Tailgater


Char-Broil's Grill2Go x200 is a super-portable, fun little sizzler made of heavy, rust-proof cast aluminum. The lid snaps shut. Grab the handle and you're off to the party! Char-Broil's TRU-Infrared design produces searing heat while reducing fuel consumption. A 16 ounce LP gas canister is enough to keep you flipping burgers for hours.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order

The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted

NK-22-Ck Grill

Their NK22CK-C Charcoal Kettle Grill puts a few spins on the familiar kettle design. In fact, the hinged lid with a handle on the front, spins in a rotary motion 180 degrees. It's hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make the NK22CK-C a viable alternative.

Click here for more about what makes this grill special


G&F Suede Welder's Gloves

Heat Resistant Gloves With Extra Long Sleeves Hold The Hot Stuff

If you're using oven mitts at the grill, it's time to trade up. Say hello to these suede welder's gloves. They're heat resistant enough to handle hot grill grates, and flexible enough to handle tongs. The extra long sleeves even let you reach deep into the firebox to move hot logs without getting burned. Our Fave.

Click here to read our detailed review

Click here to order from Amazon

GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone

grill grates

GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, keep small foods from committing suicide, kill hotspots, are easier to clean, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily removed and moved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke to whatever is above. Every gas grill needs them.

Click here for more about what makes these grates so special

kareubequ bbq smoker

Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.

Click here for our review of this superb smoker

Masterbuilt MPS 340/G ThermoTemp XL Propane Smoker

masterbuilt gas smoker

The First Propane Smoker With A Thermostat Makes This Baby Foolproof

Set ThermoTemp's dial from 175° to 350°F and the thermostat inside will adjust the burner just like an indoor kitchen oven. All you need to do is add wood to the tray above the burner to start smokin'.

Click here to read our detailed review

Professional Steakhouse Knife Set

masterbuilt gas smoker

Our founder, Meathead, wanted the same steak knives used by steakhouses such as Peter Luger, Smith & Wollensky, Morton's, Kobe Club, Palm, and many others. So he located the manufacturer and had them stamp our name on some. They boast pointed, temper-ground, serrated, high-carbon stainless-steel, half-tang blades with excellent cutting edge ability. The beefy hardwood handle provides a comfortable grip secured by three hefty rivets. He has machine washed his more than 100 times. They have never rusted and they stay shiny without polishing. Please note that we do not make, sell, or distribute these knives, they just engrave them with our name.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order

PK 360 grill

Is This Superb Charcoal Grill A Kamado Killer?

The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it's easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado. Beautifully designed and completely portable. Meathead says it is his preferrred grill.

Click here to read our detailed review of the PK 360

Click here to order it direct from PK and get a special deal for AmazingRibs.com readers only

Fireboard: The Ultimate Top Of The Line BBQ Thermometer

fireboard bbq thermometer

With the ability to monitor up to six temperatures simultaneously with either Bluetooth or Wifi on your mobile phone, tablet, or computer, Fireboard is the best digital thermometer we’ve tested.

Click here to read our detailed review

Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

Green Mountain Davey Crockett Grill

Green Mountain's portable Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker is one mean tailgating and picnic machine. But it's also gaining popularity with people who want to add a small, set it and forget it pellet smoker to their backyard arsenal. And with their WiFi capabilities you can control and monitor Davy Crocket from your smart phone or laptop.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order



Meat-Up in Memphis 2020

Join us in Memphis for our Meat-Up! Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis2020)
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  • Top | #16
    I said that writing about these topics would go viral and now think possibly "dangerous". The "warm" conversations here is a foreshadow of things to come. And that is with people that think mostly the same way as you.

    In this one you touched a little on balanced diets. The previous food pyramid actually shows where the issues with obesity and diabetes lie. Heavy on the grains like bread, cereal, rice and pasta. All starches which turn to sugar and is stored as fat. It also equated fats and oils with sweets. This was the US gov standard for many years. I even read where this program was similar to what they gave beef cattle just before going to market so that they would gain weight fast. Now at the VA they are pushing the plate chart with equal portions of grains and veggies and equal portions of fruits and proteins. Dairy is off by itself. Because of this, it is difficult to trust any science or gov't study since the gov't has it's own scientists who give them the results they want. One time this happened was way back when the sugar industry lobbied to say that there was no link between sugar consumption (which was new) and heart disease, diabetes and obesity.


    • Meathead
      Meathead commented
      Editing a comment
      I am trying to tread lightly around diet in the book and the website. So little is actually known on the topic.

    • Robert M
      Robert M commented
      Editing a comment
      can't remember the source but a year of so ago I read the food pyramid issued by the FDA was during WWII without any true scientific studies to base it on. Turns out there have been no real double blind repeatable studies to show what the actual minimum and maximum nutrient requirements were for us mortals. I figure eat what you want as long as it is in moderation. never believe any study from someone who wants to sell you something.

  • Top | #17
    Thunder77 I couldn’t comment directly to your question as my quote was too long. It is based on USDA labelling standards. Clint Rowe explained it in an American Meat Science Association publication as follows:
    “The USDA has defined Standards of Identity for processed meats, and the standard of identity of some products, including frankfurters, ham, and bacon, states that they are cured. The USDA further defines cured meats as those that include the addition of sodium nitrite, sodium nitrate, potassium nitrite or potassium nitrate. If a product defined as cured in its standard of identity is manufactured without one of the USDA recognized curing ingredients, the manufacturer must include “uncured” following the product name and “no nitrate or nitrite added except those naturally found in (added ingredients)” on the product label. Due to this regulation, cured meats produced with an alternative curing methods are required be labeled as “uncured” and “no nitrate or nitrite added” even though they have cured meat characteristics and contain residual nitrite and nitrate that is indistinguishable from those found in traditionally cured products.”


    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks for that clarification! I always wondered about that. So it is "uncured" because the additives are not recognized as USDA defined "curing ingredients."

  • Top | #18
    Meathead Great posting! Muchas gracias! I am a recently retired physician, and have been saying similar things to my patients and family for decades, with some pushback. Folks like to have something to fear! When patients would tell me that they want to treat their malady with natural remedies, I would go into my 'where do you think medications come from?' spiel. Pit viper venom, leech spit, Digitalis (foxglove), Deadly nightshade (atropine), Penicillium mold, etc, etc. But, do you want to chew some bark, or get bit by the viper, or would you rather some scientists, under the supervision of the FDA, isolate the active ingredient, study it, quantify, and manufacture carefully calibrated delivery vehicles. Blah, blah, yada, yada....

    Meathead, I would love to copy and send your post to my loved ones, and ones I don't care much about as well. But, I don't want to violate your authorship rights. Can you advise: quote and give credit, forward? (I don't know that AR has a forwarding feature.)

    Thanks again, from a former Chicagoan (born at Edgewater hospital in Uptown after WW2).



    • Meathead
      Meathead commented
      Editing a comment
      I am flattered. Be my guest.

  • Top | #19
    This is an old article, but a good read on the potential issues of GMO food with no proper controls:



    • Robert M
      Robert M commented
      Editing a comment
      unless your source has an .edu on it then it is questionable for reference to science issues. I have found Huffington post to be questionable source for anything, but that is just my opinion.

  • Top | #20
    I want to weigh in and say I enjoy discussions like this one. I understand that they have the potential of becoming overheated, as do discussions of which kamado brand is the best. I believe that AR is a unique, or at least a very unusual, website wherein civility is prized. I think AR is a place where discussions like these can exist "peaceably". I believe that discussions like these can further education and understanding of topics that are not generally treated objectively by our typical media--and "political"--sources. These discussions will necessarily result in disagreements, but disagreement is not an inherently bad thing and, further, many of these disagreements can be resolved by facts--facts revealed through the course of the discussions.

    Meathead 's whole thing, the very reason for his success, is busting myths by using science. He is not wishy-washy about busting myths. We have here on this thread a discussion of food and food technology. Myths abound in these areas. Food and food technology are why we are all here. Why can't we exchange ideas, and information, in a civil manner?

    I'll offer the link below in furtherance of the discussion and then wait to see how this plays out.


    Edited to add:

    It is incorrect to claim that GMOs are casually or carelessly approved:


    From the link: "It is no small undertaking to successfully shepherd a new GMO product through the maze of regulatory and testing requirements encountered around the globe. In the United States, where much of the agricultural genetic engineering occurs, it takes an average of nearly eight years and the expenditure of more than $135 million to develop a new trait and move it through the regulatory process."
    Last edited by Willy; March 4th, 2019, 10:55 AM.


    • Pj Jordan
      Pj Jordan commented
      Editing a comment
      GLP is an excellent source for credible,evidence based information on GMOs.
      Dr. Paul Offit at Skepticalrapter is another good source for information from GMOs to Glyphosate.

      The Facebook Group Food and Farm discussion lab also has a wealth of information and you can discuss topics with everyone from farmers to molecular biologist

  • Top | #21
    arboreal Thanks for you kind words and thoughtful commentary. I have read your comments for the third time and I see your point on unintended consequences, but there can be unintended consequences of conventional breeding too, can't there. Why are GMOs more likely to produce surprises? I think the rewards of foods that use less water, are drought resistant, need fewer pesticides, justify their study. You advocate caution with GMOs. How do we test them? They have to be field tested, don't they?

    On the organics, why is spraying with a microbe better than spraying with a chemical?

    You say "Composted manure from animals that aren't kept in incredibly dense agri-business operations have far fewer harmful bacteria." It is my belief that all cow pies have pathogenic bacteria no matter how they are fed. Using that manure as fertilizer is a risk for contamination, even if they are heated in a compost pile.


    • Robert M
      Robert M commented
      Editing a comment
      What most people don't realize is bacteria and fungi break down most of the nutrients plants absorb. So those who claim natural fertilizers are superior to chemical fertilizers are not completely correct. All the plant sees is nitrogen and does not question where it came from.

  • Top | #22
    Thunder77 Shot this last month in a breakfast buffet in a Hotel in San Francisco
    Attached Files


    • Top | #23
      Willy Well said! As for political interference, my wife just retired as Chief, Food Technology Branch, Division of Food Processing Science & Technology, U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Her team did great research, most recently on the contamination of wash water used for fresh produce. She also sits in on panels selecting research projects for funding. The lengths they go to to make the process fair is impressive. She say she has NEVER had gov interference in here research or publication of here team's data. BUT funding cuts do have an influence.

      On the subject of sprouts: I wrote this years ago: https://amazingribs.com/more-techniq...est-food-world


      • ddmcwhirter
        ddmcwhirter commented
        Editing a comment
        He also recommended soaking your salad fixins (before chopping) with a little bleach for some time before rinsing. I don't recall how much bleach...just a little. I didn't care at the time, I had no fear and never got sick...just chopped that head of lettuce and ate.

      • ddmcwhirter
        ddmcwhirter commented
        Editing a comment
        I had to chop several bunches of celery for a big potato salad. Dang, there's dirt collected down in the base of the bunch. Now, what if that had been "organic" celery? That there dirt would be manure? Yuck!

      • ddmcwhirter
        ddmcwhirter commented
        Editing a comment
        When they found that one cow in the US or Canada with prion disease, my HEB buddy was getting calls constantly from HEB's owner. My buddy and I are at the bar after work and my buddy is constantly talking to USDA honchos who are trying to track down sources of infected cattle and the cattle's progeny.

    • Top | #24
      WARNING!!! We have to be careful here, as this thread could get political very quickly, and, as has been indicated earlier, end up generating more heat than light, not to mention violating the basic rules of this site.


      • Willy
        Willy commented
        Editing a comment
        I'd like to think we're adults here and your fears won't be realized. I wouldn't bet much on my opinion though! :«) I hope I am shown to be correct in believing that a thoughtful, respectful conversation of controversial topics can be had on AR. Time will tell.

    • Top | #25
      There seems to be trepidation on broaching these topics. I say, why not, so long as we keep it fact based, non-confrontational, let's do what wise people are supposed to do. We can do this without being tribal and accusing groups. Discuss it freely!


      • Polarbear777
        Polarbear777 commented
        Editing a comment
        This is good. On any other forum we would have all been banned by post #12.

        Very little us known well enough to trust. Anyone who says they know absolutely is selling you something.

    • Top | #26
      Another of my favorites is “non-GMO” steel cut oatmeal when GMO oatmeal isn’t a thing yet. It’s like hard sugar candy saying “fat free” when of course it always was.


      • Top | #27
        GMOs have been on the market for roughly 20 yrs now. Trillions of meals eaten and not a single link to any health issues. There’s a ton of testing that has been done on the safety of GMO crops. Both independent, universities, and federal.
        You mentioned the failings of conventional farmers as the cause of chemical compounds in organic crops. There’s a long list of approved pesticides that are allowed in organic farming. Many of which are older generation and have a worse environment impact than many modern pesticides. Copper Sulfate being one of them and Rotenone being another.
        As far as “honest” farmers being sued for Patented GMO crops appearing on their land, I don’t know of one case of that happening. Could you provide me a link so I can check it out?
        You also mentioned “enormous agri-business” trying to solidify their control of American agriculture. That’s just plain conspiracy theory there. Before it was sold to Bayer, Monsanto had a smaller net worth than Whole Foods. The Organic Consumers Association donates a hundreds of thousands of dollars to anti GMO groups so they can spread misinformation and fear monger about biotechnology.
        So I do think you’re a bit anti-GMO.
        Last edited by Pj Jordan; March 4th, 2019, 10:16 PM.


        • Willy
          Willy commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks for the net worth comment! I now remember that Starbuck's also had a market cap larger than that of Monsanto.

          It is hard for an "average" American to not be anti-GMO to some degree. Misinformation permeates the media sources we all trust (or not lol), not due, imo, to dishonesty on their part but due instead to a lack of science knowledge.They're journalists, not PhDs in some field of science.

      • Top | #28
        I'm glad you're hitting on the word "natural." That's such a ridiculous term. Everything in the UNIVERSE is natural—that includes plastics and anything else created by humans. We're part of the universe just like every other creature. (George Carlin does a really funny routine crushing that word.)

        I got into a primal/paleo-ish diet years ago and still follow a sort of template. That's when I learned to cook and became extremely aware of food labels and just how deceptive they are. A huge problem though, is that people get on one side of the fence or the other and turn a blind eye to their own faction. I have seen so many "paleo" products that just make me laugh. So while I learned hilarious stuff that the "processed food industry" does (like add 3 kinds of sugar to avoid listing any one as the main ingredient) I see vague marketing terms on the other side like "all natural" that's just... meaningless. It works too. My mom is like, the person they target. She buys all kinds of treats for the kids and says, "It's okay, they're all natural."

        "Mom, seriously, what does that even mean?"

        While I am by no means a strict adherent, I do know that considering what and how I consume in context to human evolution was absolutely eye-opening. It totally changed my relationship with food (and I lost like... 50lbs in the process).

        The criticisms on dietary studies are great too. I've read a lot of them over the years, especially when some new news article comes out that "contradicts" last week's new ground-breaking whatever. "Oh good, there was a control group of like 12 people. That's totally significant." (Not to mention you have always got to look at the funding when it comes to any study.)

        GMO is such a misunderstood topic. I think there is this tendency for it to basically turn into the "hippies" vs the "SCIENCE!" crowd. But the question is always, "What are we changing? What are the potential consequences?" We bred tomatoes to look more round with more uniform color and inadvertently bred out a lot of the natural sugars that make those heirloom versions so... much... tastier. (And don't even get me started on the marketing history that is the awful Red "Delicious" Apple. Yeesh.) There is this weird fear that altering the genes in a lab, for whatever reason, is more dangerous than cross-breeding, hybridization, and all the other stuff we've been messing with for centuries in some cases.

        Sure, we can do crazier things now but, in my opinion the GMO situation is overblown in terms of scariness.

        I don't really want my food bred to stand up to MORE pesticides because... more pesticides which have problems beyond just the food itself (agricultural runoff, for instance). But to mass produce food, we gotta modify the originals. We're not feeding 7 billion people with what we had at our disposal 2000 years ago. It's just a mixed bag. And yeah, there are often unintended consequences but that goes for all technology. I don't think GMOs are scarier than automobiles and way less scary than social networks, lol.

        I'd say there is this strange new blind trust in "SCIENCE" right now. So much "science" comes from funded studies and advertising supported media outlets to report it. Diet and nutrition studies are rarely objective. Heck, the old food pyramid pushed by the US Government was based in the business interests of certain states and industries. (And no, this isn't tinfoil hat stuff—it's the nature of politics.) Scientists themselves and the researchers often have bias to. If you're out to prove a pet theory, you've got skin in the game. (Or, like the studies linking saturated fat to heart disease someone just throws a bunch of data in the trash when it doesn't line up with his hypothesis.)

        You can't know everything. We understand, as a species, so much less than we think about biology and biomechanics. We're information overloaded and constantly being scared into eating or not eating this and that.

        Lewis Black asks, "Is milk good or bad?" The first ten seconds sum it up. (Warning, pretty vulgar, but it's pretty funny.)

        (+1 for knocking PETA. Dead on.)


        • Meathead
          Meathead commented
          Editing a comment
          I think AmazingRibs.com is a Paleo product.

        • binarypaladin
          binarypaladin commented
          Editing a comment
          I'd agree in many respects. It's at least as "paleo" as a lot of other claims, lol. More so than the dietary matter, a lot of primal/paleo groups like to focus on other "ancestral" aspects, and I find the focus on food + people + gathering—by far the biggest positive for me in learning how to really cook—is something this site makes it a good point to focus on. (Loved your article about how Black Friday sucks.)

      • Top | #29
        Some truths really are truths. Others are more malleable. It depends on a lot of things, not the least of which is how you want to use them.

        When it comes to what you eat, I feel safe saying that a truth can be YOUR truth, not dependent on whether it is replicatable, and not relatable to what others might know to be accurate. De gustibus non disputandum est, to the extreme. You are the one eating it, after all.


        • Top | #30
          Awesome post,, and some great comments! Had to add a great book on this topic, too: https://thebigfatsurprise.com/