A BBQ Primer

by Chef William “Billy” Lundergan | Owner operator Billy’s Backyard BBQ

Chef William "Billy" LunderganWow what a topic! It is a vast universe of meat, veggies, and other creations, each with their own galaxies of smoke, seasoning, sauce, and other flavors.

When I was asked to do this for Chocolate Bar-B-Que, I was honored.  Having been in this trade for over 20 years this is my first article or blog or anything I have chosen to do.  So what may be my choice of topic?


Wood Pellet Grills

Many of you have heard the Buzz in the last few years, or have seen the grills featured at Costco, but what is it really?

Wood Pellet Grilling is the greenest way to cook your food.

As far as it being the greenest way to BBQ, compare to the 98.75% burn rate on most grills consisting of charcoal, wood, propane, or natural gas, and you will see most grills are not as green.  The junk they press into coal is bad enough, including the added chemicals.

Propane is the second cleanest way to cook, but if you have a smoker or grill look at the top at the residue the gas leaves behind.  It is not all grease; it is a gas residue that collects on all burned fuel.  Also, at 27 dollars per tank it cost more as well.

Raw wood burning grills are great however they are costly to operate, and who has the space?

Now natural gas is more cost effective then propane but try to take a natural gas grill to the beach.  Also, if you notice the residue from propane, natural gas is ten times worse.

Now in the Green market, it is as follows.  Cleanest to not-so-green.

  1. Wood Pellet grills
  2. Electric grills
  3. Propane grills
  4. Raw Hardwood grills
  5. Natural Gas grills
  6. Lump Coal
  7. Charcoal

The most efficient way to cook your food

While all these grills are favorite among there users, whether charcoal or propane.  Remember, the truth is, you get one use out of a twenty pound bag of charcoal, and one cook out of  20 lbs wood or lump coal as well.  Now, out of propane you get six cooks out of one standard tank.  On the other hand, where you use Wood Pellets, you can get up to 20 hours of cook time.  With Wood Pellets, when you are done with each cook session you have a thimble full of ash.

One of the best flavors you could get in your food

Wow!  Can you think of a better flavor then natural wood smoke cooked?  One of the best things about cooking with Wood Pellets is this…..Wood Pellet grills are all indirect cooking.  As a result, you have less burning and flare ups.

The easiest way to impress your friends with your cooking ability

Now this is the fun part about Wood Pellet grilling……impressing your friends!  You go out to your grill, turn it on, and it reaches the temp you like within 7 to 10 min.  At 350 you can sear a Steak.  In a day of smoking one brisket your friends with hail you as their new grill master buddy.

With coaching in technique, you can do way more on a wood pellet grill

  1. Sear
  2. Grill
  3. BBQ
  4. Smoke
  5. Slow smoke days at a time
  6. Bake

Anyone can produce a seven coarse meal in a couple of hours.  I used to do a three hour demo and in three hours I could cook 60 pieces of chicken, 2 pork loins, a basket of 9 swordfish steaks, 2 turkeys at 24 lbs each, veggies, hot rolls, 50 jalapeño poppers, 4 liquor cakes, and 8 dozen chocolate chip cookies.

Hope you find this article enlightening as I try to find things I can do on a wood pellet grill, everyday.

Happy Smoking


Chef William “Billy” Lundergan
Owner operator Billy’s Backyard BBQ
Owner operator Uncle Mush’s
PO Box 2942 Costa Mesa Ca. 92626

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