Trader Joe’s Lemon Pepper Grilled Asparagus

An easy addition to any grilled dinner is grilled asparagus. The cooking time is so quick that I like to prepare this while the meat that I grilled is resting. The smokey flavor and charcoal char make this a perfect companion for a steak dinner !

Before grilling, season the asparagus with canola oil and Trader Joe’s Lemon Pepper seasoning blend. When ready to grill, set the grill for direct high heat using the 3 second method. If this is the first item you’re grilling, do so for 1 1/2 minutes covered, then flip and repeat. If you’re grilling after you have done steaks,chops, etc extend the time to 2 minutes per side. Always make sure that you place the asparagus on the grill perpendicular to the grill bars, paying special attention when you flip them.

Adding grilled asparagus to your grilling bag of tricks places you one step closer to becoming the Master of the Grill !


Buffalo Chicken Wings the easy way !

Like wings but hate dealing with the messy oil ? Try grilling your wings next time. Begin with Perdue wingettes and Lawry’s Buffalo BBQ sauce. Marinate the wings well early in the morning and let them rest in the refrigerator until you’re ready to grill.

When its grill time, set your grill up for indirect grilling with high heat using the 3 second measuring technique. Clean and oil your grill grate and place the wings on the cool side.

Grill covered for 15 minutes,flip, and grill for another 15 minutes.

Next, place the wings over the coals and grill covered for 1 1/2 minutes. Flip and repeat. At this point, the wings should have a nice grill char and you’re ready to eat.

Pair this with a nice pasta salad and you have a nice simple meal that lets everyone know that you are the Master of the Grill !

Tequila Lime Chicken Thighs

For a smoky spice taste, try Whole Foods Market Tequila Lime Seasoning on boneless skinless chicken thighs. Start by brushing the thighs with canola oil. Next, rub the spice on and into the chicken. You’ll want to use a lot of this seasoning, so crust it over well. Next, marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours to allow the seasoning to properly flavor the chicken.

When ready to grill, set the grill for direct high heat using the 3 second measuring technique. Place the thighs on a well oiled grill grate and cover and grill for 3 minutes. Next, flip the chicken thighs and grill covered for another 3 minutes.Finally, make one last flip and grill covered for 4 minutes.

When you take the chicken thighs off the grill, let them rest for approximately 5 minutes so the juices can re-distribute. Serve with Mexican rice or grilled corn for a delightful, spicy dinner prepared by a Master of the Grill !

Easy Grilled Garlic Bread

A great addition to any meal is a slice of grilled garlic bread. This is a simple and easy addition to your grilling bag of tricks. Take any loaf of crusty bread, cut in half lengthwise, and then cut into serving portions. Brush the inside of the bread with olive oil and add as much crushed/minced garlic as you like. After you’ve grilled the main course, give a quick brush to the grate and place the bread on the grill, crust side down. Toast the crust side to your liking, checking every 20 seconds or so. Time will vary based on the heat of your grill, but 20 seconds at a time will be a safe interval. When the top is done,flip the bread over and toast the garlic and oil side to your liking ,checking every 20 seconds or so. 

The addition of easy grilled garlic bread will be welcomed by everyone and will take you one step closer to becoming Master of the Grill !

Grilling Temperatures

In the Basics of Grilling, I mentioned using high heat for grilling. For most of my recipes, this is the temperature I use since it keeps things simple. There will be times, however, when you will need to lower the temperature, such as when cooking ribs. The following chart is from The Barbecue Bible by Steve Raichlen.

 In using this chart, hold your hand palm down about 3-5 inches above the grill gate and count the seconds until the heat forces you to move your hand.

  • 1 second    Very Hot          650 degrees
  • 3 seconds     Hot               600 degrees   This is the temperature I use the most
  • 5 seconds    Med. Hot       400 degrees
  • 7 seconds    Medium         350 degrees
  • 10 seconds  Med. Low      300 degrees
  • 15 seconds     Low            250 degrees

As always, keep notes on the temperature you used, as well as the cooking times so that you keep things simple and consistent. Remember, consistency will help you become Master of the Grill !

Simply Perfect Grill Marks

Every Master of the grill needs to know how to get that beautiful cross hatch pattern on their steaks. Start with a hot well oiled grill ( see the Basics section ) and divide your cooking time into 1/4’s. Place your steak on the grill at 10 o’clock for the first 1/4 of cooking time, rotate to 2 o’clock for the second 1/4, flip and repeat for the last 2 1/4’s. You should now have a perfect cross hatch pattern on your steaks. Practice this simple grilling technique and you will be one step closer to being the Master of your grill !

Baja Citrus Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs

Boneless skinless chicken thighs are simple and easy to grill. I like to marinate them in the morning for an evening grill. McCormicks makes a variety of marinades which are a simple and easy way to add great flavor to your meal. One of my favorites is McCormicks Baja Citrus marinade. To this I add 2 cubes each of Dorot‘s frozen cilantro and garlic. If you haven’t tried this, it’s a quick and simple way to add extra flavor to your marinades.

Grilling Time -Set your grill up for direct grilling and high heat , remembering to oil the grate ( see the Basics section of my blog ). When the grill is ready put the chicken thighs on the grill, cover them with the lid and cook them for 3 minutes, flip and cook for another 3 minutes,flip a final time and cook them for another 4 minutes. Pull the thighs from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes. Serve them with a Mexican rice, a salad or your choice of side. This is a simple and easy chicken thighs meal with no flare up that is perfect every time. As always, make notes of any adjustments you make and you will be on your way to being Master of the grill !