the best. really.

What Are the Best Grilling Tools?

We had the country’s best pitmasters weigh in.

Whether you’re new to ‘cue and looking to build your grilling toolbox from scratch, or you’re a seasoned smoker looking to upgrade her rusty tongs, we went to a dozen of the country’s best pitmasters taking part in the upcoming Big Apple Barbecue (June 10 and 11 in Madison Square Park), and had them share their go-to gear with us. (Note, Father’s Day is upon us, and a lot of these gizmos, gadgets, and can chicken-roasting racks would make great gifts.)

Weber Grill Out Handle Light
“This light is perfect for the home grill. It turns on and off as you open and close the lid to the grill (so you don’t have the touch the controls with dirty hands). The light also illuminates the entire cooking area of the grill so that you see the true color of your food, no matter what time of day.”

All-Clad Stainless Steel Cookware Set
“All-Clad grill utensils are heavy, sturdy, weather-resistant, good-looking, and easy to clean. The rounded handles are shaped for comfort and secure gripping. The grill brush is sturdy and keeps the grill clean, which is essential to good grilling.”

Harris Professional All-Purpose Spray Bottle
“You need this! It has a couple great uses. Fill it with water to quickly squirt out any flare-ups — too many flare-ups can make your food taste a bit acrid. Or fill it with your favorite vinegar-based mop to add that extra spritz of flavor to your food. This squeeze bottle is durable and hard to clog. You can also set the exact amount of liquid to dose as well.”

Cave Tools Smoker Box

Cave Tools Smoker Box
“I’m a pit guy who loves smoke. This smoker box by Cave Tools is a great alternative to a full smoker. A little oak chips on your grill can breathe new life into your ‘cue. This box is made from heavy aluminum to prevent warping and has a large capacity, so you are not changing chips as often. Smoke is the secret seasoning that can take your barbecue from good to great.”

Weber Jumbo Joe

Weber Jumbo Joe
“For the apartment dweller, the Weber Jumbo Joe is perfect for grilling on the sidewalk, fire escape, or common space. Eighteen inches of grill space gives you enough room for one rack of baby back ribs, or three rib-eye steaks, or four half-pound burgers. It is functional and effective at grilling and smoking.”

Red Boat Salt
Red Boat salt is often my secret ingredient when making interesting dynamic rubs. I will either replace salt completely with this salt substitute, or cut it into the salt in traditional rubs. Red Boat is known for making fish sauce. Once the barrels of fish sauce have been emptied, they allow the salt to crystallize on the inside of the barrels. The barrels are then scraped, harvested, and packaged. The salt is delicious — sharp with a big punch of umami.”

BBQ Dragon
“The BBQ Dragon is a fire starter’s best friend. This easy-to-use little gadget will clip onto any grill or smoker and assist you in getting those coals burning fast and evenly.”

Thermapen MK4