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8 of the best barbecue cookbooks

by Malou Herkes

published on 2 January 2024

Barbecues are not all beef burgers, chicken skewers and corn on the cob. There’s a whole world of smoking and grilling out there, from Middle Eastern-style spreads to vegan burgers. Here, we’ve rounded up eight of the best barbecue cookbooks to guide your grilling exploits. You’ll find odes to slow-cooked meat, vibrant vegetarian barbecue recipes, plenty of myth-busting tips, plus all the sauces, marinades, rubs and extras you need to achieve top class barbecue results.

Berber & Q

by Josh Katz

From the man behind London’s Berber & Q grill restaurant and ex-Ottolenghi protégé, Josh Katz, this cookbook is a creative guide to cooking over coals. Recipes take inspiration from the Middle East and beyond with recipes that range from mezze to grills to his famous cauliflower shawarma. Chapters are dedicated to meat, fish, vegetables and even desserts, with additional guidance for pickles, sauces and rubs to make your BBQ spread even more dynamic. 

The Green Barbecue

Proving that you needn’t rely on meat to create a truly sumptuous barbecue feast, Rukmini Iyer’s The Green Barbecue is a collection of 75 flavour-packed recipes. Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or simply looking to expand your BBQ repertoire beyond the usual, meat-based dishes, you’ll find something for you in this bright and beautiful book. Want a sneak peek? Check out Rukmini’s recipe for chipotle mushroom and black bean burgers with peanut and lime.

Low and Slow

Low and Slow

by Neil Rankin

Chef Neil Rankin’s Low and Slow is a comprehensive meat bible with a lengthy chapter dedicated to BBQ and slow-smoking. He walks you through everything from how to light your barbecue, to choosing charcoal and wood, to the best meat cuts, and dispels common BBQ myths before you even start. This is a great cookbook for anyone wanting to get to grips with cooking meat properly.

How to Eat Outside

Split in to five chapters, from picnics and BBQs to campfire cookouts, bonfire celebrations, and wilderness eats, this is an indispensable resource for the outdoorsy among you. Genevieve Taylor puts flavour back into campstove food, with brilliantly inventive recipes you can cook over fire. Bread and butter pudding with marmalade and chocolate, anyone?

Meliz’s Kitchen

by Meliz Berg

Meliz Berg’s debut cookbook is a mouth-watering celebration of Turkish Cypriot food. Given that cooking on a mangal (barbecue) is so central to the cuisine that until recently it was considered the default method, it’s no surprise to find a whole chapter dedicated to grilled meat, fish and sides to serve at a barbecue. Think buttery lamb chops, chargrilled tiger prawns, tender chicken kebabs, and crisp, citrussy side salads.

The Campfire Cookbook: 80 Imaginative Recipes for Cooking Outdoors

The Campfire Cookbook

by Nico Stanitzok, Viola Lex

With more than 80 sweet and savoury recipes, including easy one-pan pasta, whole grilled fish and (our favourite) chocolate cake baked in an orange, this cookbook is for every type of camper, whether you’re a festival goer, a luxury camper or you’re long-term on the road.

Jamie’s Food Tube: The BBQ Book

by DJ BBQ

From YouTube sensation DJ BBQ, this pocket-sized cookbook is packed with 50 recipes that will get you barbecuing like a pitmaster. DJ BBQ shows you how to set up the barbecue to get the results you want, with trouble-shooting tips and recipes you’ll want to cook for the whole family. 

Ainsley's Ultimate Barbecue Bible

Ainsley’s Ultimate Barbecue Bible

Packed with mouth-watering recipes, this is a barbecue bible that covers everything from practical cooking advice to themed menus. There are over 150 recipes, each bursting with spice and flavour, as well as salsas, marinades, barbecue breads and summertime drinks to top it all off.

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