Barbeques (BBQs) are an essential part of the Aussie lifestyle. They can also contribute to air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. If you're cooking or entertaining in the backyard regularly, it makes good energy sense to buy a BBQ that will stand the test of time and be easy to use, maintain and operate efficiently. Things to consider:
- Making a list of requirements. It's important to buy the right type and size for your needs so you're not heating a large cooking space unnecessarily. Consider which accessories such as range hoods, rotisseries and wok burners you'll actually use.
- Doing your research. Specialised outdoor cooking options now include pizza ovens, fire pits, and even solar ovens. Your choice will vary depending on the food types you want to cook, whether it's for everyday eating or you're planning on entertaining with large groups.
- Going for gas over charcoal. Choose gas for a cleaner meal that emits less air pollution. Gas BBQs have been shown to emit nearly three times less greenhouse gases than charcoal. If you're really keen on reducing your energy use, there's also a range of new solar products that you can experiment with this summer, including solar ovens and water boilers.
- Keeping the hood down while grilling. By cooking your meat and vegies at the right temperature and for the right amount of time you can retain juices and flavour as well as reduce energy consumption. You can try our other BBQ tips to increase the life of your grill and save even more energy.
- Substituting chemical based cleaners, with natural alternatives. You can buy these or make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and scrub clean with a steel brush. Reduce the amount of food sticking to the grill by rubbing the plate with an onion and some olive oil once it's hot or by marinating food items first.