Image for blog - 11 tips for hosting a BBQ on a budget Image for blog - 11 tips for hosting a BBQ on a budget
Features // Blog

11 tips for hosting a BBQ on a budget

Publisher - Great British Food Awards
published by


Jul 05, 2022
8 minutes to read

With July set to be a sizzler, BBQs will be top of the menu for millions of Brits. But the cost of feeding a party of hungry guests can quickly add up. Fortunately, TV’s BBQ GrillMaster Brian George has shared his top budget hacks and recipes for enjoying a delicious grilled feast without breaking the bank.

In celebration of National BBQ Week (July 4th - 10th), he reveals how you can feed your guests for as little as £1.50 per person with these simple swaps…


Remember that don’t need to buy everything new. It’s amazing what spices and sauces are lying tucked away at the back of your cupboard. A lot of these can be thrown together to make delicious marinades which would cost a packet readymade. Look out for spicy sauces, garlic powder, paprika, brown sugar, Worcester sauce, soy sauce and honey and syrups, which are great for marinating. And rice you’ve never opened makes a great side dish.


Regardless of your culinary tastes, kebab skewers are an easy win! Whether you’re a meat-eater or not, marinading food the night before will bring out all the flavours. And you can speed up the process by placing marinated food in a plastic bag in the fridge, this will cut marinading time by half. If using wooden skewers place them into a bowl/basin of water for one to two hours before use to reduce the risk of burning them!


You don’t need a professional smoker to get the job done. It’s totally possible to get amazing results with a humble aluminium foil tray. Add some hickory wood chips that have been soaked in water for several hours beforehand. Put them all together and then place the aluminium tray - covered with foil - on the grill. Cut some holes in the foil to allow the smoke to escape and wait while your food gets gloriously wood smoked.


Using half a white onion to clean your BBQ grill will help disinfect it with its antibacterial properties and help your grill stay shiny for years to come.


Meat is the most expensive part of the BBQ so fill your guests up with jacket potatoes, potato salad, rice, pitta bread, BBQ veggies and corn cobs.


Image for blog - 11 tips for hosting a BBQ on a budget

Grilled sirloin steak is delicious but costs a lot. Opting for cheaper cuts like skirt or bavette which is cheaper but just as delicious when cooked properly. Pork belly and mutton are also cheaper options which taste great on the BBQ.


Charcoal and gas can be pricey so try and prepare as much of the food as possible before taking it outside. Bringing meat up to room temperature before cooking is essential and will bring out the flavours in even the cheapest cuts. Pre-cook the jacket potatoes and wrap them in tin foil to keep warm.


A whole chicken can go a long way and can represent a significant saving. You can eat the breasts, wings, thighs, legs and even use the carcass to make chicken stock or broth. Waste not want not!


It may some counter-intuitive but investing in a proper grill set will save you a fortune in the long run and make your food taste far better. You don’t need to break the bank either, as charcoal BBQ grills are available from as little as just £15, with gas grills from around £40-50.


Ask your guests to eat bring a drink or a dish - it can be a side, a dessert or a bottle of wine but getting others to help will keeps costs and preparation time down.


Newspaper is a great way of cleaning your dirty grill. After it has cooled down, cover it top and bottom and soak it in water before leaving it to sit overnight. The ink and the moisture should remove all of the nasty grime that’s been built up leaving you with a sparkling grill in the morning without having a break a sweat.

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