Can you grill in the rain?
Yes, you can.
Rainy days don’t have to ruin your outdoor grilling plans! With a little preparation and clever tips, you can enjoy a delicious barbecue even when it’s pouring outside.
In this article, we’ll show you how to grill in the rain safely and efficiently, so you can savor the smoky, mouth-watering flavors of grilled food while staying dry and cozy under your patio cover.
Are There Advantages To Grilling In The Rain?
Grilling in the rain may seem like an unappealing prospect. Still, there are some surprising advantages to firing up your grill when the weather is wet. Here are a few reasons why grilling in the rain can be advantageous:
Cooler temperatures: Rainy weather can provide a cooler, more pleasant environment for grilling, especially during summer. It can make grilling more comfortable and enjoyable and prevent overheating the grill and food.
Enhanced flavor: The rain can enhance the flavor of grilled food by infusing it with a subtle smoky taste. The water droplets can also help to create a flavorful crust on the surface of the food.
Fewer bugs: Rainy weather can keep annoying bugs at bay, reducing the likelihood of pesky insects disrupting your grilling experience.
More privacy: Rainy weather can discourage neighbors and passersby from venturing outside, providing a more private and intimate atmosphere for your grilling session.
Challenging and rewarding: Grilling in the rain can be a challenging but rewarding experience, allowing you to test your skills and overcome the obstacles presented by the weather.
A unique experience: Grilling in the rain can be a unique and memorable experience that you can share with family and friends, creating a fun and exciting outdoor activity.
While grilling in the rain may require additional preparation and safety measures, the benefits outweigh the inconveniences. So, next time it’s raining outside, don’t hesitate to fire up your grill and enjoy the unique advantages of grilling in the rain.
Things You'll Need
A few things will simplify your life when it comes to grilling in the rain. The idea is to improve your setup and surroundings to spend less time in the shower and minimize the impact of the rain on your cooking.
Even if your setup is highly robust, you’ll want the following equipment:
Waterproof Grill Covers
A waterproof grill cover is a must-have accessory for grilling in the rain. Look for covers that are made from durable, waterproof materials and are designed to fit your specific grill model. Covers should be able to protect your grill from rain, wind, and other elements, as well as prevent rust and other types of damage.
A grill umbrella can provide additional protection for your grill and food during rainy weather. These umbrellas are typically made from water-resistant materials and are designed to attach to the side of your grill or stand on their own. Some models are adjustable and can be moved to different angles to block rain and wind.
Cast Iron Skillets and Griddles
Cast iron skillets and griddles are great for grilling in the rain because they can be used on top of a grill or on a stovetop. These heavy-duty pans can handle high heat and are great for cooking meats, vegetables, and other food items in wet weather.
Thermometers and Timers
In wet conditions, it can be harder to judge when your food is fully cooked. Investing in a quality meat thermometer or timer can help you monitor the internal temperature of your food and ensure that it is cooked to perfection.
I know what you’re thinking, “It might sound super obvious, but a raincoat is essential for your comfort and safety!”. If we don’t have any repellent outer layer on, our clothes will get damp. Furthermore, it can be uncomfortable because itchy fabric chafes against the skin or, worse, takes off more than just some water weight-leaving us chilly as heck!
We don’t want to get injured either. The last thing you need is a trip and fall accident. When the ground gets slippery from rain or weather conditions like snow, it can make this even more dangerous.
A power strip with an extension cord
You’ll need multiple outlets! Even if your grill has its built-in light (which saves electricity), it’s still nice to have some extra lighting for safety purposes. Isolating one part of the backyard where things won’t get wet will help, too.
So consider placing your outdoor dining table there while keeping all other surfaces off-limits. For example, you are putting up temporary fencing around areas where people can easily walk through if they slip and slide on slick spots nearby.
A grill caddy
Grill caddies can be made out of wood or metal. They are designed to carry your portable grill and accessories. So you don’t have to run back and forth between the table where food is being served. Especially during busy cookouts when a lot is going on at once!
How to Grill in the Rain
Grilling in the rain can be a fun and exciting way to enjoy the outdoors and cook delicious food. However, it requires extra preparation and attention to ensure a successful cookout. Here are some tips for how to grill in the rain.
- Choose the right location: Place your grill away from flammable materials, such as dry leaves, paper, or gas cylinders.
- Ensure a level ground: Ensure the ground beneath the grill is level to prevent it from tipping over.
- Cover your grill: Use a tarp or waterproof cover to prevent electrical components from getting wet and short-circuiting.
- Prevent slips and falls: Wear appropriate shoes with good traction and avoid running or moving too quickly to prevent slips and falls.
Preparing Your Grill
- Clean your grill: Make sure your grill is clean and free of any debris that could catch fire or create smoke.
- Preheat your grill: Preheat for at least 10-15 minutes before adding any food to ensure it’s hot enough to cook properly.
- Adjust your cooking time: Grilling in the rain may take longer than usual, so be prepared to adjust your cooking time accordingly.
- Use a lid: A lid on your grill can help regulate the temperature and prevent rainwater from diluting the flavor of your food.
- Avoid flare-ups: Excess water can create flare-ups, so keep the lid on as much as possible and avoid using too much oil.
- Monitor your food: Keep a close eye on your food to ensure it doesn’t become overcooked or undercooked.
- Grilled vegetables: Vegetables such as peppers, onions, and mushrooms are perfect for grilling and can be easily seasoned with herbs and spices.
- Fish: Fish such as salmon and trout can be grilled in a foil packet to keep them moist and flavorful.
- Grilled fruits: Pineapples, peaches, and other fruits can be grilled for a sweet and savory dessert.
- Turn off your grill: Ensure your grill is turned off and the gas supply is shut off.
- Clean your grill: Clean your grill thoroughly, remove any food debris, and wipe down the grates with a clean cloth.
- Store your grill: Cover and store it in a dry place to prevent rust and damage.
Tips for Lighting Your Grill in the Rain
Grilling in the rain can pose some challenges when lighting your grill. Wet Charcoal and matches and damp air can make it difficult to get your grill started safely and effectively. Here are some tips for lighting your grill in the rain:
Use a Chimney Starter: A chimney starter is a great tool for lighting Charcoal in wet weather. It uses newspaper and a small amount of lighter fluid to ignite the Charcoal, and the chimney design helps to draw in air and promote combustion. It can help you get your Charcoal lit quickly and efficiently, even in damp conditions.
Use a Propane Torch: A propane torch can be useful for lighting charcoal and gas grills in the rain. It can help you avoid using lighter fluid or other chemicals, which can be dangerous in wet conditions. Just be sure to use the torch safely and avoid flammable materials.
Keep Charcoal Dry: Wet Charcoal can be difficult to light and produce a lot of smoke. To keep your Charcoal dry, store it in a dry place before using it, or use a waterproof container to transport it to your grill. You can also use a grill cover or tarp to protect your Charcoal from the rain before lighting it.
Use Electric Starters: Electric starters are a great option for lighting gas grills in the rain. They use a heating element to ignite the gas and can be plugged into an electrical outlet. It can help you avoid using matches or lighters, which can be difficult to use in wet conditions.
Keep Matches Dry: If you use matches to light your grill, keep them dry. You can store matches in a waterproof container or wrap them in plastic to protect them from moisture. You can also use wind and waterproof matches, designed to light in wet and windy conditions.
Be Patient: Finally, when lighting your grill in the rain. Wet conditions can slow down the lighting process, so getting your grill started may take longer than usual. Take your time, use the right tools and techniques, and follow all safety guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable cookout.
By following these tips for lighting your grill in the rain, you can ensure a safe and successful cookout, no matter what the weather has in store. Whether you use a chimney starter, propane torch, electric starter, or matches, keep your grill and food safe from moisture and follow all safety guidelines for a successful grilling experience.
The Best Foods to Grill in the Rain
Grilling in the rain can be a fun and adventurous experience. Still, choosing the right foods is important to ensure a successful cookout. Here are some of the best foods to grill in the rain:
Steak: Thick and hearty steaks, such as ribeye or strip steak, are perfect for grilling in the rain. They can stand up to the added moisture and are best cooked over high heat for a charred and juicy finish.
Burgers: Burgers are a classic grilling favorite that you can enjoy rain or shine. Choose high-fat ground beef for a juicy and flavorful burger that can withstand the added moisture.
Chicken: Bone-in chicken is a great option for grilling in the rain. The bones help to insulate the meat and prevent it from drying out, while the skin can become crispy and delicious over high heat.
Pork chops: Thick-cut pork chops are another hearty meat that can withstand the added moisture of grilling in the rain. They are best cooked over high heat for a crispy crust and juicy interior.
Vegetables: Grilled vegetables can be a delicious and healthy addition to any cookout. You can grill many types in the rain without issue. Some great options include bell peppers, zucchini, eggplant, and corn on the cob.
Kabobs: Kabobs are a versatile and flavorful option for grilling in the rain. You can choose your favorite meats and vegetables, skewer them together, and cook them over high heat for a delicious and easy meal.
Sausages: Sausages are another great option for grilling in the rain. They can be cooked quickly over high heat and come in various flavors and types to suit any taste.
When grilling in the rain, choosing foods that can withstand the added moisture and require high heat for a flavorful and charred finish is important. With these food options, you can have a successful and delicious cookout, rain or shine.
Don't Do The Following
There are some things you should avoid to ensure your safety and the quality of your food. Here are some things not to do when grilling in the rain.
Avoid Grilling in the Garage
You should never, under any circumstances, attempt to cook in your garage when it is raining. Never mind doing it. It’s pretty dangerous. Not only can carbon monoxide kill you, but the smoke damage you’ll cause will certainly devalue your home.
Don’t allow rain to pour onto your food
Don’t let rain puddle on your meal, flame, or coals. You don’t want any chemicals in the rain to contaminate your food. Still, you also don’t like rain to splash ashes and other particles all over it. If you can’t prevent rain from hitting your food directly, find a solution before grilling in the shower.
Never grill in the high winds
Make sure you aren’t cooking in high winds either since these are more challenging conditions with which to contend!
Don’t light up near a dry tree
Be careful not to light fires near trees where branches might be caught ablaze by stray sparks as well- this isn’t safe no matter what the weather conditions are.
Ignoring wind direction
It’s essential to check that your grill isn’t pointed into the wind, as this will blow smoke and embers back toward you! Also, be aware of any obstructions between you and where your food is cooking. Don’t let anything get in its way.
Don’t Leave Your Grill Unattended
Never leave your grill unattended when you’re outside! You can’t predict what will happen, and it’s always safer to stay by the grill than to go inside for a quick break.
We hope these tips on how to grill in the rain have inspired you to embrace the weather and enjoy some delicious barbecue, no matter the conditions outside. Whether grilling up a storm for a backyard party or enjoying a family dinner, these techniques will ensure success.
Remember to prioritize safety, prepare your grill, and follow our cooking tips for the best results. With these tips, you’ll be ready to take on any rainy day and savor the unbeatable taste of grilled food, rain or shine!