18 Must-Have Barbecue and Grilling Tools

Make sure you're ready with all the essentials this grilling season!

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May 11, 2021
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Rack of baby back ribs on the grill. Please see my portfolio for other food related images.

Photo by: mphillips007/Getty Images

mphillips007/Getty Images

As the weather finally starts to warm up across the country, so does the desire to get outside and grill. But you're going to need more than the right grill to sling hot dogs, grilled chicken, ribs and burgers like a pro. Make sure your cooking arsenal is equipped with all the essentials for a backyard barbecue, including grill baskets, basting brushes and mops, grill covers and more. We've rounded up all the essentials, so you can ensure you're set for summer.

Looking for more grilling inspiration? Check out #BBQBrawl, premiering Monday, June 14 at 9|8c on Food Network.

$8.99

Basting brushes are great go-to tools that you’ll turn to again and again for cooking projects, especially for adding some flavor to your barbecue. Keep a couple different sizes on-hand to switch between for different meats and sauces.

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$6.95

Barbecue experts know that the best way to coat your meat in sauce is not by pouring it on top. Rather, you want to use a sauce-soaked mop to ensure it gets into every nook and cranny of your meat. If you’re looking to get a good amount of sauce on in a short amount of time, a mop is your best bet.

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$13.99

When trying to flip meat with a fork, you risk piercing your food and letting those precious juices run out. Tongs, which are perfect for turning food while it cooks and holding meat while you carve, are your answer to that.

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$29.99

Grilling at night feels ideal, but it can be hard to know if your burger is ready to be flipped if it’s too dark outside. Rather than fumbling with your phone light, add a grill light that’s made for the job. Another option is snagging a multipurpose tool like this Grillight LED Grilling Set, which includes a light in your go-to grilling tools.

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$8.99

One of the great obstacles of grilling is knowing when your meat is done. Take the guessing out of the equation with a meat thermometer. Most gas grills come with thermometers in the lid, but if you have a charcoal grill, you might need to get your own. We suggest one with a long probe to help you reach into the hot grill.

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Whether you’re looking for an easier way to grill vegetables, smaller pieces of meat, quesadillas or even oysters, grill baskets are a great option. Most close firmly around your food, so you can flip mid-cook with ease. We promise that once you start grilling with grill baskets, you’ll never be able to go back.

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$12.97

One of the best parts of cooking on the grill is how quick and easy it is. But, if you don’t clean it properly, you’ll be left with a smokey mess next time you fire up the grill. Avoid that with a heavy-duty brush, like this one which has a large cleaning surface and safe for porcelain bristles. Pro tip: if you clean your grill while it’s still warm, any stuck food will be so much easier to clean.

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$272.19

Always be prepared for unpredictable weather with a durable grill gazebo. Whether you’re caught in an unexpected thunderstorm or the sweltering sun, this grill gazebo, which comes equipped with LED lights, rust-resistant steel frames and a soft, vented canopy top, will have you covered.

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$27.49

Keep your grill protected from the elements with a sturdy cover. While grills are meant to be outdoor appliances, you can prolong its longevity with something as simple as keeping it covered when you’re not using it. Your grill will last longer and stay cleaner if it’s protected from any unexpected weather.

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$55.99

Add a little bit of flavor to your food without overdoing it with a Himalayan salt block. When warmed up, the block acts as the perfect cooking surface while it imparts delicate flavor slowly and naturally

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$12.94

If you are grilling food that is too delicate for tongs, like fish for example, it’s important to have a sturdy spatula to flip with ease. And, when you’re dealing with sauces, it’s also good to keep a silicone spatula on-hand to make sure you’re not leaving any of the rich goodness behind.

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If you struggle with lighting up your charcoal grill, this tool is meant for you. Load up the charcoal chimney with briquettes, light them and let them burn in the cylinder until they reach the perfect cooking temperature before releasing them into your grill. No lighter fluid or special skills needed.

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$18.99

The best way to light a charcoal grill: Place crumbled newspaper under the chimney, place on the grill grate and fill the top with charcoal. When you light the newspaper, the charcoal catches fire. Once the charcoal is white, dump it under the grate and you are good to go!

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$12.95

Turn your grill into a smoker with these boxes — no additional appliances needed. Fill it up with your favorite wood chips and let the grill do the rest.

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$10.59

Between aluminum foil pans, which are great for holding basting juices and other liquids to keep meat moist, grill foil packets, which are a great option for tossing chopped veggies, shrimp and delicate fish on the grill, foil is certainly a must-have for your summer cooking. Even standard, heavy-duty foil is great for covering food to keep it warm and sealing wood chips to smoke.

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$27.12

Protect your hands from leaping flames, hot food and piping hot pans with silicone gloves. They can withstand temperatures of up to 500 degrees F, are non-slip and give you full use of all your fingers, meaning you can still handle all your grilling tools without taking them off.

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$31.99

Grilling can get messy, so don’t get caught off guard. There is nothing better than a high-quality barbecue apron to save your clothes and keep you comfortable during a long day of grilling. This Hudson Durable Goods apron also has large pockets, perfect for holding all of your grill tools or seasonings.

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$7.93

Making your own spice rubs can be intimidating. Avoid the hassle and try this McCormick Grill Mates Smokehouse Maple Seasoning. This blend of onion, garlic, maple syrup and brown sugar can be paired with a multitude of things from beef to seafood, taking your dish to the next level.

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