6 Essential Grilling Tools

Grilling is a favorite summer cooking technique that enhances the flavor of many South Beach Diet dishes, including lean meat, skinless chicken breasts, fish and shellfish, veggies, and even fruits. Whether you’re already a grill master — or aspiring to become one — you’ll still benefit from using the right grilling utensils. Make sure you have the following equipment on hand before you get started.

  1. Long-handled metal tongs: A pair of extra-long tongs is essential for picking up and turning pieces of food on the grill. Metal tongs won't burn, and long ones will keep your hands at a safe distance from the heat. That said, many people like to wear a heatproof grilling glove as an extra precaution.


  2. Long-handled two-prong fork: Like the tongs, a long fork is good for flipping large pieces of lean meat or poultry.


  3. Metal spatula: This tool is especially helpful when flipping chicken breasts or fish steaks or fillets. Unlike tongs, a spatula will keep delicate food intact.


  4. Basting brush: Use this tool to mop, or baste, foods with marinades. Look for a brush with heat-resistant silicone bristles that won’t shed. Since your brush may come into contact with raw meat or poultry, make sure you clean it well with soap and hot water before you baste veggies, fruits, or other foods that you may be cooking along with, or after, the meat or poultry.


  5. Instant-read thermometer: This important tool works just as well in the backyard as it does in the kitchen. Use it to determine when your meat is cooked to perfection. Note: New USDA pork cooking guidelines suggest that cooking pork to an internal temperature of 145°F is now safe.


  6. Grill racks and baskets: Perforated nonstick grill racks (also called grill toppers), grill baskets, or shaped fish baskets can be used to grill small or delicate vegetables and fruits, whole fish, shellfish, and more, ensuring that the food won’t slip through the grates or stick to the grill.

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