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5 Cons of Grilling Food

Paul has been passionate about preparing, cooking, and eating healthy food for over 30 years. Born in the UK, he now lives in Florida.

For my 5 disadvantages of grilling, please read on...

For my 5 disadvantages of grilling, please read on...

Grilling is a great cooking technique for creating tasty food and is particularly popular at outdoor social events. It's often a fun, social, and relatively easy way to prepare hot fare.

However, grilling does also have its downsides. For instance, constant supervision is needed when cooking and there can be health and safety concerns.

This article lists and looks at five of the negatives of grilling.

5 Disadvantages of Grilling

Here are five of the cons associated with the cooking technique:

  1. Requires constant supervision
  2. Inconvenient
  3. Some skill is needed
  4. Fire and burn hazards
  5. Health concerns

I look at each downside in more detail below.

1. It Requires Constant Supervision

As anybody who's grilled knows, the technique usually requires a big commitment from at least one, and preferably more, people. Somebody has to attend to the barbecue pretty much constantly while the food is being cooked. If that person wants to take a break, or attend to other matters, then a substitute is required.

Grilled food requires constant supervision, otherwise there is a risk of the food being cooked unevenly or getting burned. The heat source can also be unreliable and may require regular adjustments, particularly if you're using a charcoal grill, or cooking over an open fire.

2. It Can Be Inconvenient

Setting up the grill for cooking can take an extended amount of time, particularly if it's fueled by charcoal. Once you reach the required temperature, it then the heat has to be maintained at a constant, which can be even more challenging.

Grilling is generally done outdoors and therefore very sensitive to the weather conditions. They can usually only happen during the warmer months of the year and are susceptible to being rained off.

Charcoal grilling creates a lot of ash and can be very messy, especially if you're the one who's doing the actual grilling. The smoke gets in your eyes and afterwards there's always a major clean-up operation.

3. Some Skill Is Needed

While it's fair to say that grilling isn't advanced cookery, it should be noted that some proficiency is still required to produce tasty food. The heat source needs to be at the right temperature and maintained, and the food needs to be flipped, adjusted, and resituated to make sure that it's cooked evenly.

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Grilled food by basic methods can sometimes be a little bland and more advanced techniques, such as the use of marinades and sauces, can radically increase the quality of the fare produced. This is particularly true for grilled vegetables, but can also apply to meats.

4. There Are Fire and Burn Hazards

Appropriate safety measures need to be taken if grilling is to be done without fire and injury risks. It's easy for a novice to make mistakes.

Thousands of fires happen each year in the United States, according to the National Fire Protection Association. They often start because fat from the food drips through the grate and onto the hot charcoal and spark a conflagration. A fire on the balcony of an apartment in a complex, for instance, can burn down an entire building.

Social distractions and the involvement of alcohol can also increase the risks of fires and other accidents, such as burns, occurring at barbecues.

5. There Are Some Health Concerns

There are a number of potential health risks associated with grilled food, here are five of them:

  • While grilling might involve the use of less oil than other cooking techniques, such as frying, that doesn't automatically make it healthy. This is due to the types of food eaten at barbecues, which are often processed meat products that contain high amounts of saturated fat, calories and cholesterol.
  • The intense heat involved with grilling results in charring. The damaged meat proteins can form carcinogens such as heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).
  • Meat fats and marinades that drip through the grate onto the hot charcoal vaporize and then condense on the food. While this process supplies the distinctive taste that we associate with grilled food, it also produces advanced glycation end products, harmful compounds that can cause heart disease, diabetes, and even Alzheimer's disease.
  • Cooking the food evenly and thoroughly can be a challenge when grilling. While the outside of the meat can be done so that it's crisp and brown, the inside can still be undercooked, resulting in health risks.
  • The smoke and soot produced by charcoal grills and open fires can get in people's eyes and lungs. This causes discomfort and can aggravate other health conditions.
The Char-Broil 463377319 Performance 4-Burner Cart Style Liquid Propane Gas Grill.

The Char-Broil 463377319 Performance 4-Burner Cart Style Liquid Propane Gas Grill.

My Favorite Grill for Outdoor Home Use

While there are certainly some negatives, there are also lots of positives associated with grilling. If you're seeking suggestions for a reliable, affordable grill that offers value for money, then my recommendation would be the Char-Broil 463377319 Performance 4-Burner.

I've used this grill many times at outside social events over the past couple of years and always had excellent results. The Char-Broil is propane-fueled, which makes it fast to fire up and straightforward to use, especially when it comes to maintaining the temperature levels.

For sure, there are superior propane grills out there, but none as good for under $300, in my experience.

Char-Broil Pros

  • Given that it's on public display at events, nobody wants a grill that's an eyesore. The Char-Broil is attractive. The stainless steel finish gives it a sleek appearance, as well as being practical for when you have to clean up.
  • The grill has a porcelain-coated grease pan that's easy to remove for cleaning. The overall design of this grill makes it very straightforward to use.
  • It maintains the temperature when used at high heats, something that grills don't always do.
  • This grill is rugged. The previous Char-Broil I had worked for more than seven years and I wouldn't be shocked if my current one lasts even longer.
  • I've zero regrets about buying this grill, it's great value for money.

Char-Broil Cons

  • There is some assembly involved when the Char-Broil arrives in its box. It took me time to put together. However, once fully assembled, it's worked without any issues.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Paul Goodman

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