No matter how you rate yourself on the grill master scale, there are always more secrets to learn. One of the simplest, and one of my personal favorites, is using a good spice blend.
A good spice blend can be used in a marinade, as a rub, or simply sprinkled on right before grilling. A great blend is our grilling herbs, but we also have others that work amazingly well.
Grill Master Spice Blends
- Grilling Herbs – Not just for grilling, this is my personal favorite all purpose seasoning blend. I often use it when not grilling. It works equally well on beef, chicken, pork, and veggies. The garlic and black peppercorn are universal, and the rosemary, thyme, and other herbs give this blend a gentle savoriness.
- Cajun Spice – Warm, but not hot, this blend gives just enough zip to fish and meats. You can use it when you’re wanting to invoke a Southern personality to your meal.
- Caribbean Blend – This one is spicier than the Cajun Spice, yet also cool and engaging. Think spicy heat tempered with cooling herbs. Also very versatile, try it on chicken, shrimp, pork, and veggies.
- Mediterranean Seasoning – When you want to go straight to the Mediterranean with light and satisfying flavors, grab this blend. It has rosemary and fennel, in addition to other spices, that make you dream of blue water and warm breezes.
- Mexican Seasoning – A close second to the Grilling Herbs in my kitchen as an all purpose seasoning blend, this blend brings a joyous fiesta mood to any dish. Besides grilling with it, you can also use it in sauces and baked foods.
Grill Master Spice Techniques
As a marinade. This method is best for meats rather than for veggies. For every pound of food, use one tablespoon of spice blend to one cup total of liquid. For the liquid, you’ll want about half to be fat like olive oil or avocado oil. For the other half of the liquid, play around with adding something acidic like citrus juice (lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit) or vinegar, and something salty like soy sauce, fish sauce, or coconut aminos. Let the foods soak for a few hours up to 24 hours before grilling. You can also use this method before baking or sautéing foods.
As a rub. Basically, a rub is the same as a marinade but without the liquid component. It’s best suited for slow-cooking meat preparations. You’ll want to use more herbs and spices, and they can be combined with other dry ingredients like brown sugar and extra salt. Sprinkle generously over your meat and let sit for a few hours up to 24 hours before grilling or baking.
Sprinkled on. This is the quickest and easiest method for seasoning your grilled foods. This is also the method that is good for all foods. For grilling, simply oil up your foods and sprinkle your favorite seasoning blend over along with some salt and pepper. Then grill away. This method will give great flavor to your foods, but it will be less intense than either the marinade or rub.
Now that I’ve let you in on my simple grilling secrets, grab a cold beverage and get out there. Hone your grill skills.