Here are some of the best tips for barbecuing on a budget.
With summer just around the corner, it’s time to start planning the perfect barbecue.
Barbecues are a great way to spend time with friends and family, hang out outside, and eat good food.
But, if you don’t plan right, costs can quickly add up.
Finding the Right Grill
Plan on having lots of barbecues throughout the summer?
It’ll be worth your while to get the right grill.
You don’t need the fanciest or most expensive grill on the market.
Plenty of stores will have good summer sales, so focus on finding one that is a decent size and has all the features you need.
Take Care of Your Grill
Once you get your grill, take good care of it.
This will ensure you get the most use possible.
Get all the equipment and accessories you need but be careful not to go overboard.
You don’t need ten brushes or spatulas; if you really want to save money, only buy the essentials.
Don’t Want to Buy a Grill?
Is the cost of a new grill just not in your budget?
Do you not plan on having enough cookouts to justify buying one?
There’s nothing wrong with using a griddle or an iron grilled skillet and your stove.
Your guests can still hang out outside while you and other hosts take turns checking on the food.
Cut Down Meat Costs
Meat is usually the most expensive part of a barbecue.
You can save lots of money by cutting down costs here.
Choose Cheaper Cuts
Your guests aren’t expecting anything fancy; they just want good food.
Now’s not the time to invest in seafood or expensive steaks.
Instead, opt for cheaper cuts of beef and chicken, hamburgers, hotdogs, and similar options.
That being said, don’t skimp out on quality. Go with the best 100% grass-fed beef to delight your guests with high-quality meat.
Stretch Your Burgers
If you decide on burgers, you can easily stretch them.
This simply means adding ingredients to make the beef go farther.
You can get creative by adding mushrooms, peppers, breadcrumbs, mashed beans, etc.
These ingredients will bulk up the patties and add flavor.
Load Up on Toppings
Spice up traditional hotdogs and hamburgers with plenty of condiments and veggies.
Providing your guests with a topping bar ensures they won’t feel like they’re missing out on more expensive meats.
Serve Appetizers and Sides
Serving appetizers and sides will make your guests full, fast.
When your guests fill up on bread, chips and dip, salads, and other foods, you won’t have to spend as much on meat.
Whenever possible, make your own appetizers and sides.
It’s cheaper and will also result in dishes that are fresher and tastier!
Skip the Paper Plates
Paper plates and cups may be convenient.
After all, who wants to do the dishes after a barbecue?
But, if saving money is your goal, skip the paper products.
They are an unnecessary cost when you already have plates and cups in your kitchen.
Stock Up on Plenty of Ice
At your barbecue, you’ll probably need a chest of ice outside to keep drinks cold.
Many people buy bags of ice from the store.
But why waste the money when you have a convenient ice maker at home?
A few days before your cookout, start stocking up.
Fill Tupperware containers with ice and keep them in your freezer.
This way, you’ll have plenty of ice on the day of your barbecue.