Grilling 101

Living in Arizona, gives you many options year-round, no snow in the Valley, wonderful temps from September to about April, the hiking trails, the beautiful sunsets, and Monsoons in summer!  For many, that means preparing food on the grill, year-round!   Whether it is steak, burgers, chicken, sausages, or hot dogs, grilling can be an easy, fun, and delicious way to prepare meat. And just because we are in the insurance business, doesn’t mean we are duds! Let’s have some fun!


But you may be able to make the rest of your meal on the grill, too. Vegetables, fruits, and even desserts can be cooked on the grill. If you are ready to take your outdoor cooking skills to the next level, consider the grilling ideas and tips below.


Grilled vegetables don’t have to be partial to kabobs. Asparagus, sweet peppers, potatoes, zucchini, and carrots are among the vegetables that can be grilled. Chefs suggest rinsing, trimming, and brushing vegetables with oil or butter before putting them over medium-hot heat. You can cook them right on the rack (perpendicular to the rack’s wires) or place them on a piece of aluminum foil. Whichever method you choose, be sure to turn them periodically and cook until tender.
Your entree is the focal point of your meal, but it doesn’t always have to be grilled beef, pork, or chicken. Other distinctive, yet enjoyable, main dishes that can turn out great on the grill include:


  • Oysters: Bon Appetit suggests you can cook oysters on the grill without even shucking them; the shells will simply open when they are done.

  • Homemade pizza: Grill one side of the crust over the indirect fire, rotating 180 degrees after a few minutes to evenly cook both ends. Then flip the crust over, add toppings, and grill over indirect heat again until the crust browns and the cheese is melted.

  • Tofu: Begin by pressing the tofu to get rid of excess water and make room for new flavors.  Then marinate it for some extra flavor and cook for up to seven minutes on each side, or until you see grill marks.

From cake to fruit, your grill can deliver some amazing desserts. According to the Food Network, pound cake cooked on the grill is an easy and delicious treat. Simply brush both sides of a piece of cake with butter and cook each on the grill for about two minutes.


Ripe, but not overly soft, fruit works best on the grill. Some of the best fruits for grilling are pineapples, nectarines, and peaches, she says. Follow these tips:


  • Cook fruit only over the indirect flame.

  • Do not remove the skin before grilling.

  • Cut fruit into pieces big enough that they won’t fall through the grill grate.

Expanding your grilling horizons can lead to some amazing meals.
But before you fire up the grill, make sure you take grilling safety precautions. Fires are a possibility for both charcoal and gas grills, and it’s important to understand their safety hazards before even lighting them.


Once you feel confident in your preparations and process, see what kinds of delicious grilling ideas you can come up with.


Do you have any additional suggestions for food to cook on the grill? Share them with us in the comments!

IPA Team

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