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What an amazing time to learn to BBQ!

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  • stratfordwill
    Club Member
    • Apr 2019
    • 19
    • Northcentral Washington
    • Weber 22" Kettle

      Anova Sous Vide
      6 Qt Instant Pot

    What an amazing time to learn to BBQ!

    So I’ve been cooking and grilling for 30 years or so since I was a kid, but I’ve never tried serious bbq/smoking until recently. Boy did I pick an amazing time to decide to start. Think of the combination of tools and information available to us today.

    Thousands of hours of youtube reviews, recipes, and howtos from folks all over the world; forums like the pitmaster club with decades of experience happy to share at the drop of a hat; countless inexpensive tools based on generations of distilled wisdom made by BBQ entrepreneurs like the slow’n’sear, bbqguru fans, and grillgrates; reasonably priced wireless smart thermometers with cloud capabilities for the data nerds like me.

    I can’t imagine the trial and error I would have gone through if I’d tried to pick this up 20 years ago. These days, someone like me can jump in with a minimal investment of time and money and reasonably expect to make outstanding BBQ right off the bat.
  • Henrik
    Founding Member - Moderator Emeritus
    • Jul 2014
    • 4310
    • Stockholm, Sweden

    So true.


    • LA Pork Butt
      Charter Member
      • Dec 2014
      • 5369
      • Grew up in New Orleans, lived in Texas for 20 years, lived in Mandeville, LA for 22 years. I now liv

      When I started they were few if any books an no internet! We have come a long and with TV BBQ shows regional styles have cross pollinated across the US and even countries.


      • Skip
        Founding Member
        • Jul 2014
        • 3308
        • Blue Earth, Minnesota
        • MAK Pellet Grill, Large BGE, Weber Kettle with SnS, Weber Gasser, Pit Barrel Cooker, Cast Iron Pans & Griddle, Grill Grates, Mostly Thermoworks Thermometers

        Over 15 years ago I was bitten by the BBQ/Cooking bug. The information just keeps coming. So much to study and learn. Wow!


        • RonB
          Club Member
          • Apr 2016
          • 12714
          • Near Richmond VA
          • Weber Performer Deluxe
            Pizza insert
            Smokenator 1000
            Cookshack Smokette Elite
            2 Thermapens
            lots of probes.

          The first time I tried smokin'many years ago, I gave up - didn't have the time or interest to try to figure it all out. But I eventually tried again, and the internet was, at times, a great help. Sometimes it was not... Then I retired five years ago and got serious. Then I found The Pit and things took off.


          • JeffJ
            Charter Member
            • Feb 2015
            • 2409
            • Michigan
            • Jeff

            I’ve been doing this since early ‘97.

            My skills have have improved exponentially since joining The Pit.

            I totally agree with the premise of this thread. It seems like we are in a BBQ golden age.

            Charcoal now seems omnipresent. Charcoal cookers seem to be an expanding market, especially Kamados.

            Good times indeed.


            • Michael_in_TX
              Club Member
              • Dec 2018
              • 420
              • Texas Gulf Coast
              • Grills:
                Weber 22" Kettle Premium w/Slow N' Sear 2.0
                Pit Barrel Cooker
                W.C. Bradley & Co. Char Kettle CK-115 ~1980s Vintage Grill (inactive)

                Thermopop (Instant Read)
                Thermoworks Smoke

              I've only been at this since December, but I absolute echo that. I learn best by watching and all the HD YouTube videos are fantastic.


              • JeffJ
                JeffJ commented
                Editing a comment
                The Pit is a wealth of information. The collective Q knowledge of this community is both amazing and humbling.
            • Black99vette
              Club Member
              • Jun 2016
              • 379
              • Aurora, IL

              • Smokers & Grills
                • Weber Original Kettle Premium 26"
                • Weber 22" Performer Deluxe
                • Weber 22"
                • Weber Smokey Mountain 18.5
                • Weber Smokey Joe
                • Char-Broil Promo H2O Smoker
                • Cal Flame P Series P4
                • Coleman Road Trip Grill (Tailgating)

                • No name brand
                • A wireless unit - not sure of the brand

                • Slow 'N Sear
                • Drip 'N Griddle Pan
                • Bar-B-Que PartyQ
                • Weber Rapid-Fire Chimney
                • Smokenator

                • Beer: Sam Adams, Heineken
                • Other: Tequila, Margarita

                • Grilling / Smoking & Cooking
                • Work Working
                • Home Improvement / DIY

                About Me
                Real Name: Wayne
                Location: Aurora, IL

                • Software Engineer Manager - Home Automation, Security / Access Control & Video Systems

              Very accurate. Ten plus years ago there wasn't much information about smoking & BBQ, and half the information out there was incorrect. And I don't think we realize the educational impact YouTube is having.


              • Anton32828
                Club Member
                • Jun 2018
                • 137
                • Weber 22 inch kettle grill
                  Maverick ET-732 thermometer

                Yep. I have had to learn entirely from this forum, a few others, and YouTube. It’s been great!


                • jgreen
                  Charter Member
                  • Oct 2014
                  • 2720
                  • Winnipeg Manitoba Canada
                  • Cookers:
                    Broil King XL
                    Broil King Smoke
                    Weber Kettle 26
                    Grilla Pellet smoker
                    Capital 40 natural gas
                    Napoleon Pro 22 kettle

                    Maverick 733
                    Thermapen (ok..4 thermapens)
                    Thermo works DOT (or two)
                    Fireboard (probably my favourite)
                    Thermworks Smoke (or two)

                    SnS (original, plus and XL)
                    DnG pans, 6 or 7 of these
                    and, maybe some other toys as well

                  The only problem I have is that the “minimal investment” you refer to in the first post seems to keep growing. Sure is fun though.


                  • stratfordwill
                    stratfordwill commented
                    Editing a comment
                    No kidding. Minimal investment is definitely possible, but perhaps unlikely. I was planning to buy an $800 pellet grill when I started my research this year. Finding this place convinced me to use the Weber 22 I already had, saving a ton of money. $600 worth of mods and accessories later, I've got something better than a pellet grill for me, but not much cheaper.
                    And now I'm starting to see the symptoms of MCS. I've been looking at outdoor griddles late at night and dreaming up patio shelters.
                • Troutman
                  Club Member
                  • Aug 2017
                  • 7197

                  • OUTDOOR COOKERS

                    BBQ ACCESSORIES

                    WOOD & PELLET PREFERENCES

                    SOUS VIDE

                    INDOOR COOKWARE

                  Well said. It’s really gone mainstream. Raising a whole new generation of backyard pitmasters is nothing short of a cooking revolution 👍👍👍


                  • lostclusters
                    Club Member
                    • Jul 2017
                    • 326
                    • Oceanside, CA
                    • Mak 1 Star
                      Char-Griller Legacy Charcoal Grill w/Side Firebox
                      WSM 22.5"
                      ThermoWorks Smoke
                      ThermoWorks Thermapen
                      Rock's Stoker II wifi
                      Flameboss 500

                    I start out in that late 80's, doing everything wrong. Soaking my wood, no temperature monitoring except the gauge on the lid of a cheap bullit type, ... But the output was still pretty good. Smokers have come a long way since then. And so has knowledge of BBQ.

                    Some of the things I have learned is that you can get some the best BBQ smoking in a cardboard box or by digging a hole in the ground, if you know what you are doing. And regulate cooking temperatures by the amount of fuel used, not by regulating air flow. Although some control of air flow is necessary.


                    • ofelles
                      Club Member
                      • Jun 2018
                      • 2015
                      • Brentwood CA
                      • Yoder YS640 on Comp cart
                        Klose 20x42 Charcoal Grill
                        LSG Insulated Cabinet
                        Jumbo Joe
                        VacMaster Pro 380 sealer
                        FireBoard and Pit Bull fan
                        Thermoworks Signal
                        Thermoworks Dot
                        Thermopen Mk4

                      Started out in the 70's with a little hibachi. Over the years my interests have grown and waned. Learning from Dad and friends was all there I had. Lots of the blind leading the blind. Anyways have enjoyed BBQ and cooking indoors though. Started getting serious about cooking around 2000 and got quite good on a stove and oven. BBQ moved from the bottom of the list to the top a couple of years ago. The internet, this site in particular, opens up a big can of worms for me.
                      Love it but I suffer from "more is better" and I'm afraid it's chronic.


                      • CaptainMike
                        Club Member
                        • Nov 2015
                        • 2485
                        • The Great State of Jefferson
                        • Weber Summit Charcoal Grill w/SnS and DnG (Spartacus)
                          Old school big'ol Traeger w/Pro controller (Big Tex)
                          2 W22's w/SnS, DnG (1 black, 1 copper) (Minions 1 and 2)
                          20+ y/o many times rebuilt Weber Genesis w/GrillGrates (Gas Passer)
                          20 x 30 Santa Maria grill (Maria, duh)
                          Bradley cabinet smoker (Pepper Gomez)
                          36" Blackstone griddle (The Black Beauty)
                          Thermoworks Smoke and Thermapen.

                        Excellent post. Been grillin' and chillin' my whole 58 years, but nothing like what I've done since joining this site.




                        Meat-Up in Memphis 2021

                        SOLD OUT! Secure your spot on our waitlist now. First-come, first-served!
                        Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis)
                        See more
                        See less
                        Meat-Up in Memphis



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