Can you grill in the rain - meat grilling on open grill

Can you Grill in the Rain?

Whether you're cooking hot dogs or steak, there's nothing better than the aroma of sizzling meat on a charcoal grill and the camaraderie of a backyard barbecue. But what happens when the weather forecast takes a rainy turn? Can you still enjoy that quintessential outdoor grilling experience, or is it better to hang up your apron and wait for the sun to return? The debate about whether you can grill in the rain has ignited countless discussions among grillmasters and novices alike. 

Let's dive into the world of rain grilling and explore some top tips for successfully achieving a mouthwatering feast all year round, even when you're dealing with inclement weather.

Is it Safe to Grill in Rainy Weather?

The question on everyone's mind: Is it safe to grill in the rain? While grilling in rainy weather is indeed possible and can yield delicious results, safety always comes first. If you're experiencing severe weather challenges like torrential downpours or hurricanes, we don't recommend cooking outdoors. But if it's a bit of light rain or windy weather, you don't need to move the party indoors. While it's natural to have concerns about rain extinguishing flames or causing soaking wet charcoal, with the right techniques and precautions, you can conquer the challenge of bad weather and still successfully grill your food.

Which Grill Should I Use?

We don't recommend using an electric grill in the rain as water and electricity don't mix. While a gas grill or propane grill is safe to use in the rain, charcoal grills are our number one choice because of the mouth-watering smoky flavor they infuse into food. While wet charcoal might seem like a roadblock when using charcoal grills, you can easily overcome this hurdle by starting your fire earlier and allowing it to burn through any excess moisture. A chimney starter can also be a game-changer in ensuring your charcoal is dry and ready to create the perfect cooking environment.

If this is your first time using a charcoal grill, then we suggest checking out our post on how to use a charcoal grill here.

How to Grill in Inclement Weather

A rainy day doesn't have to put a damper on your outdoor cooking plans. The key is to plan ahead and consider the intensity of the rain and the cooking time required for your dishes. Here are some of our tips for grilling in the rain:

Check the Weather Forecast

Before you start grilling, keep an eye on the weather forecast. While light rain might be manageable, it's best to avoid severe weather or torrential downpours.

Start the Fire Early

If using a charcoal grill, it's best to start the fire earlier than usual to allow damp charcoal to dry out and to give your charcoal time to reach the desired grill temperature. Lighting your fire sooner will give the charcoal enough time to properly heat up. 

Use a Grill Cover

A grill cover can help keep your grill dry when grilling in the rain. These protective measures shield your grill from direct exposure to rain, preventing the fire from going out and ensuring consistent cooking temperatures. Make sure the cover fits securely and doesn't allow rainwater to seep in. If you live in a place where it rains often, a more permanent covered grilling station may be a good investment. This can include a retractable awning or a grill gazebo.

Wind Block and Patio Umbrella

In addition to rain, windy weather can pose its own challenges to outdoor grilling. Consider setting up a wind block to shield your grill from gusts that might affect the flame. A patio umbrella can also come in handy to keep the cooking area dry and provide some protection from rain. Try not to use your grill in the garage though.

Monitor Internal Temperature and Remote Thermometer

No matter the weather, monitoring the internal temperature of your food is crucial for safe and delicious cooking. A remote thermometer can be a lifesaver when grilling in the rain, as it allows you to keep track of the cooking progress without constantly opening the lid and losing heat. As grilled meat can take extra time to cook in the rain, remember to be patient, keep the lid closed, and keep the grill hot.

Plan Side Dishes

Prepare side dishes that require less time and attention, so you can focus on the grill without being rushed.

Have Extra Fuel

It's never a bad idea to have extra charcoal or more fuel on-hand in case the rain persists longer than expected.

Safety First

Always prioritize safety, especially in wet conditions. Avoid grilling in heavy rain or severe weather that could pose risks. If you have to put out a fire quickly, try throwing baking soda on the flames.

Lighting your Charcoal Grill in the Rain

Introducing the ultimate solution for rainy day grilling: the RocketFire Torch. This ingenious tool lights charcoal without lighter fluid, making it the fastest and easiest way to start your grill even when rain threatens your barbecue plans.

Its innovation lies in its Tri-Flame Cone Tip, ensuring rapid and uniform flame distribution. This groundbreaking design guarantees quicker and more consistent ignition compared to traditional methods. Crafted from stainless steel, the tip produces an expansive 60-degree tri-flame spread, outperforming other firestarters. Say goodbye to the hassle of lighter fluid, matches, and kindling, and say hello to effortless fire ignition - even in the rain!