bet grilling BBQ cookbooks
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We rounded up some of the best grilling and BBQ cookbook options around to ensure your summer meals are smoking. Check them out in time for Labor Day to make sure your meal is on point.

Summertime, and the grillin’s easy, especially if you own the right cookbook. Whether you’re the proud owner of a Kamado Joe, keep a portable Weber in the back of your pickup, or enjoy the rustic simplicity of setting fire to a pile of logs, these essential grilling guides will help you make the most of your outdoor cooking plans this season and beyond.

Related Reading: Avoid These Grilling Mistakes for Perfect Meat Every Time

Michael Symon’s Playing with Fire: BBQ and More from the Grill, Smoker, and Fireplace” by Michael Symon, $21.88 on Amazon

Michael Symon Playing with Fire BBQ grill cookbook


Michael Symon did his homework prior to launching Mabel’s BBQ which has outposts in his hometown of Cleveland as well as Las Vegas. The former “The Chew” co-host crisscrossed the U.S. tasting the nation’s best ‘cue and taking notes along the way. “Playing with Fire” highlights the valuable lessons he learned in barbecue hot spots such as Austin, Memphis, and Kansas City with over 70 recipes that cover everything from ribs and brisket to sauces and rubs.Buy Now

Related Reading: 11 Terms and Phrases That Chefs Use on a Daily Basis

Korean BBQ: Master Your Grill in Seven Sauces” by Bill Kim, $27.24 on Amazon

Korean BBQ cookbook


East meets Midwest in this 2019 James Beard Award nominee for best cookbook. Born in Seoul but raised in Chicago, Chef Bill Kim combines the best of Korean BBQ and the flavor sensibilities of the Windy City with a unique selection of recipes that revolve around his seven master sauces. Along with fire-kissed mains such as Kori-Can Pork Chop and Honey Soy Flank Steak, Kim also covers drinks, snacks, sides, and desserts to help you prepare the ultimate fusion feast.Buy Now

Feast by Firelight: Simple Recipes for Camping, Cabins and the Great Outdoors” by Emma Frisch, $15.49 on Amazon

Feast by Firelight camping cookbook


If you’re planning on taking your grilling skills beyond the backyard, then “Feast by Firelight” is a worthy investment. Dining while camping is often a hassle, but Emma Frisch makes the process simple. Her collection of tasty, easy-to-execute recipes includes tips on how to plan ahead and pack efficiently, ensuring a magical, stress-free meal under the stars.Buy Now

Related Reading: CNET’s Best Portable Grill for 2020

Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecuing and Grilling by Meathead Goldwyn, $23.39 on Amazon

Meathead Goldwyn grilling BBQ cookbook


Meathead Goldwyn is a man who truly lives up to his name. Few people are as well-versed in the art of bringing meat to flame and here the founder and editor of offers an all-in look at the essentials of grilling and barbecuing. “Meathead” is equal parts recipe book and BBQ bible.Buy Now

Mallmann on Fire: 100 Inspired Recipes to Grill Anytime, Anywhere” by Francis Mallmann, $25.99 on Amazon

Francis Mallman On Fire grilling BBQ cookbook


If anyone deserves the title of grill master, it’s Francis Mallmann. With “Mallman on Fire,” the famed “Chef’s Table” subject takes the reader on a trip across the globe through dramatic visuals and essential recipes for live fire cooking, covering everything from beef, pork, fish, and fowl to vegetables, desserts, and even bread.Buy Now

How to Grill Everything by Mark Bittman, $16.78 on Amazon

Mark Bittman How to Grill Everything cookbook


Food columnist Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything” series never disappoints so it’s no surprise that this installment is a must-buy for any grill owner. If you’re looking to expand your burger, dog, and steak repertoire, “How to Grill Everything” offers 1,000 different options for flame-cooked eats with simple-to-follow recipes that even grill novices will be able to master.Buy Now

Related Reading: CNET’s Best Gas Grills for 2020

Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto” by Aaron Franklin, $18.15 on Amazon

“Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto” by Aaron Franklin


Texas pitmaster Aaron Franklin has been ensconced in the unofficial BBQ hall of fame (and he’s currently a semi-finalist for the real thing); luckily, he doesn’t hoard his knowledge. He teaches a MasterClass on how to smoke brisket that covers every part of the process, but for those devoted to the written word, his meat-smoking manifesto is a fantastic resource for wood smoking simple cuts of meat (and remains a bestseller five years after its publication). “Franklin Steak” is also worth a look.Buy Now

VBQ – The Ultimate Vegan Barbecue Cookbook: Over 80 Recipes – Seared, Skewered, Smoking Hot!” by Nadine Horn and Jörg Mayer, $16.29 on Amazon

VBQ vegan bbq cookbook


When it comes to barbecue, meat tends to hog the spotlight. But if you’re looking for animal-free options to throw on the grill, “VBQ” offers over 80 vegan-friendly alternatives that will satisfy flesh-eaters and Morrissey alike.Buy Now

Everything Else You Need to Know

Our Best BBQ & Grilling Tips, Techniques, Tricks, and Tools

Header image courtesy of Huw Jones / Photolibrary / Getty Images Plus.

David is a food and culture writer based in Los Angeles by way of New York City. His work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, CBS Local, Mashable, and Gawker.
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