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Whether you’re looking for a gift to give or a little something for yourself, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite BBQ gear to make sure you get the good stuff. We have personally used every single item on this list, and when we tell you it’s the stuff we use, it’s because it’s the stuff we actually use here at The Lab. Some of the items on this list are affiliate links, and if you make a purchase you will be supporting our efforts to review and identify the best of the outdoor cooking world. Not everything on this list is an affiliate link, because some of the things we can affiliate simply aren’t the best products, and they don’t make the cut. 

Books

Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto

Aaron Franklin is synonymous with amazing bbq, and his book pulls back the curtain on his technique.

Perfect Pan Pizza cookbook

Perfect Pan Pizza Cookbook

If you pick this book up, be sure to look for the recipe for Detroit Style pizza. It's one of our family's favorites!

Cool Smoke by Tuffy Stone book cover

Cool Smoke: The Art of Great Barbecue

Tuffy Stone knows a thing or 2 about barbecue. He shares a lot of great wisdom and recipes in this book.

The Elements of Pizza cookbook

The Elements of Pizza Cookbook

If you have an outdoor pizza oven (or wish you had an outdoor pizza oven), this is a great resource to have!

barbecue sauces rubs and marinades book cover

Barbecue Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades 

In this cookbook, Steven Raichlen shares a wealth of knowledge when it comes to making your own sauces, rubs, marinades, bastes, butters, and glazes.

Pantry

Truff Hot Sauce

I love hot sauces, and Truff sauces has changed the game for me. The complexity of flavor is heads above the rest, and it's the perfect gift to help someone branch out into something new that you know they'll love.

Smoked Bros. Spices

Veteran owned and operated, these are the spice blends we used during our Best Pellet Grills under $1199 testing and they did not dissapoint!

Be sure to use the code: BBQLAB20 to save 20% on your purchase

Firestarters

Looftlighter x

Looftlighter X

Do you cook with charcoal? The Looftlighter X is a fantastic tool for getting your coals hot quickly.

GrillGun in front of a log rack

Grill Gun

Never has there been a more fun way than the Grill Gun to start a fire in your fire pit or grill.

Be sure to use the code: bbqlab to save 10% on your purchase

Thermometers

Thermoworks products: digital instant read thermometer Thermapen One

Thermoworks Thermapen One

In my opinion, a great instant-read thermometer is an absolute necessity for anyone who likes to barbecue! The Thermapen One is the top of the line.

Thermoworks products: Silicone Probe Spool

Thermoworks Probe Spools

As far as I'm concerned, this is the absolute perfect way to store your temperature probes.

Thermoworks IR gun

Thermoworks Infrared Gun

Want to know how hot your grates, griddle, or pizza stone is before cooking your food? This guy will get that job done easily.

the MeatStick WiFi Pro combo set carrying case

The Meat Stick

The MeatStick is a completely wireless meat thermometer designed to be used in both smoking and grilling applications.

thermoworks signals multi probe thermometer

Thermoworks Signals

A 4 channel bluetooth and WiFi thermometer from a trusted brand like Thermoworks? Yes, please. 

Thermoworks products: Billows temperature controller

Billows Fan

This BBQ temperature control fan kit works with the Signals to keep your charcoal grill or kamado at just the right temperature.

Fireboard 2

Fireboard 2

The Fireboard 2 is one of my favorite thermometers I reviewed this past year. You can track up to 6 different probes in one cook and it sends real-time temperature updates to your smart phone. 

Grill Tools and Accessories

Cook Time Safe Grill Brush

Bristle Free Grill Brush

I think by now we've all heard that grill brushes with bristles are dangerous. We've found this to be a great alternative to what we all used to use.

Blacksmith Hawg Lifter

Hawg Lifter Spatula

This spatula is large and in charge. I use this to lift whole pork butts, whole chicken, brisket... you name it.

GrillGrate Set of Two 13.75"

Grill Grates

If you appreciate good grill marks, you will LOVE a set of Grill Grates for your grill. They come in all shapes and sizes depending on what grill you use. 

Be sure to use the code: BBQLAB10 to save 10% on your purchase

mini loaf pan

Mini Loaf Pan

This is the pan I use to smoke my competition chicken thighs in. And my wife steals it now and then to make banana bread. Win-win.

grill rescue brush

Grill Rescue Brush

This is the safest, and probably most efficient grill cleaning brush we've used here at the lab. Made from heat retardant foam, it uses steam to wipe away the grease and grime.

pork racks

Pork Racks

Any time I'm smoking something on the small side (candy bacon chicken bites, jalapeno poppers, wings, etc.), these pork racks are an absolute necessity! They come in multiple sizes, too!

17" cast iron pan

17" Cast Iron Pan

We use a lot of cast iron pans around here but my favorite is this huge one! Especially if you like to entertain a lot, this one is fun to have around.

smashing the meat flat with a burger press

Sasquash Burger Press

I use this burger press all the time. It's the absolute best tool I've found for making smash burgers on the griddle.

Protection

NoCry cut resistant gloves

No Cut Gloves

These gloves have saved me several trips to the ER for stitches. For anyone who does a lot of cutting and prep work with sharp knives, this is a necessity!

Leather Apron

I am constantly ruining my clothes with ash and grease.  This leather apron has been great for protecting my clothes when I'm too lazy to change into my "barbecue clothes".

cotton glove liners

Cotton Glove Liners

A simple pair of cotton glove liners to go under your nitrile gloves gives the protection they need to handle transferring meat back and forth from grill to cutting board.

Grill Armor Oven Gloves

Grilling Gloves

These are the gloves that I wear every time I'm working with charcoal, a chimney of charcoal or a raging fire in our offset smoker.

Thermoworks silicone trivets

Silicone Trivet

When cooking with fire, it's usually a good idea to have a place to set your hot food down without burning the surface below. We love these silicone trivets by Thermoworks!

high heat gloves

High Heat Rubberized Gloves

I like to keep this pair of high heat rubberized gloves out by my bbq pits which are easy to slip on and handle things on the grill. 

black nitrile gloves

Nitrile Gloves

Combined with either cut resistant gloves or cotton glove liners, these are our go-to gloves for everything bbq. 

Knives

dalstrong omega santoku knife

Dalstrong Omega Santoku Knife

Besides a chef knife, the santoku style knife has become my go-to when prepping food in the kitchen. And this one from the Dalstrong Omega series is really sharp! (Sharp looking and sharp cutting)

dalstrong nakiri knife

Dalstrong Shogun Nakiri Knife

This is a beautiful knife that is the ultimate tool for cutting and preparing vegetables.

Epicurean big block cutting board

Epicurean Big Block Cutting Board

If you're looking for the ultimate cutting board, there's no need to look any further. Made from a wood and fiber composite material, knives don't dull as fast and the board lasts many times longer than the competition.

shun premier chef knife

Shun Premier Chef Knife

Every kitchen needs to be equipped with a quality 8" chef knife. Not the cheap dull one that came with the knife block you got as a wedding present 18 years ago.

dalstrong steak knives

Dalstrong Steak Knives

Even the toughest of steaks will cut like butter using these steak knives. They perform remarkably, they're gorgeous, and they each come with individual sheaths.

Pellet Grills

traeger ironwood 885

Traeger Ironwood 885

The Traeger Ironwood 885 is an incredibly easy-to-use and well-thought-out pellet grill and smoker. It has the potential to change the way you cook, and I believe if you put one of these in the backyard that you’ll find yourself out there much more often.

memphis pro

Memphis Pro

The Memphis Pro is the pellet grill we chose to install in our outdoor kitchen. With temperatures ranging from 180-650° F and an 18 lb. hopper, this grill is ready to do whatever you want it to.

Charcoal Grills

solo stove grill

Solo Stove Grill

This is by far the easiest charcoal grill I’ve used, because there’s no meddling with air intake and fire management.  If you want the ease of a gas grill but the flavor of charcoal, then this Solo Stove Grill is worth looking into.

Pillar cooker

The Pillar Cooker

This cooker has been doing all the heavy lifting in my backyard lately. It's a high end, custom made drum smoker built right here in Indiana.

kamado joe 18 inch classic

Kamado Joe Classic 18"

Kamado grills are built to be your high-heat grill and low-and-slow smoker all-in-one. And Kamado Joe is one of the #1 trusted names in the industry.

pit barrel cooker

Pit Barrel Cooker

If you’re looking for a charcoal smoker that you can just set and forget, then this Pit Barrel Cooker is right up your alley.

Be sure to use the code: BBQLAB to save 10% on your purchase

Gas Grills

American Renaissance Grill

We built the American Renaissance gas grill into our outdoor kitchen and it has been absolutely fantastic!

Griddle

Le Griddle

We installed the 30" Le Griddle in our outdoor kitchen and use it all the time. From hibachi to smash burgers, our dinners often come off of the Le Griddle.

Outdoor Appliances

RCS refrigerator

RCS Refrigerator

Having this refrigerator in our outdoor kitchen has been such a great addition! It's great having extra space to keep our meat, drinks, and condiments cold and close by.

RCS ice maker

RCS Ice Maker

Producing up to 44 lbs. of ice per day, this ice maker has been a game changer in our outdoor kitchen. 

Pizza Ovens

Ooni Karu 16 pizza oven

Ooni Karu 16

The Karu 16 multifuel pizza oven is the newest of the Ooni family and uses charcoal and/or wood as fuel to make 16" pizzas in your own backyard.

ooni medium table

Ooni Medium Table

This cart on wheels fits any of the Ooni pizza ovens perfectly and even has hooks for hanging your peels where they're easily accessible.

ooni pizza topping station

Ooni Pizza Topping Stations

What a great way to organize your pizza toppings for your next outdoor pizza party.

dough proofing trays

Dough Proofing Tray

If you're making your own pizza dough, these trays are perfect for proofing your dough balls.

ooni koda 16 pizza oven

Ooni Koda 16

If cooking with gas is your preference, this Ooni Koda 16 is a fantastic outdoor pizza oven option for cooking 16 inch pizzas in your own back yard.

perforated peel

Ooni Perforated Pizza Peel

A perforated peel is our preferred style for launching and retrieving pizzas from our outdoor ovens. 

ooni turning peel

Ooni turning Peel

This handy tool is a must for turning pizzas during the cook in an outdoor pizza oven.

Ooni grizzler plate

Ooni Grizzler Plate

One side is a flat griddle, but flip it over and you have a sizzler plate with ridges. This is the perfect tool for cooking meats and vegetables in your outdoor pizza oven.

Fire Pits

Breeo Y series

Breeo Y Series

Available starting September 2, this brand new portable design by Breeo comes with an attached handle and adjustable legs for stow, burn, and cook. Use wood, charcoal or pellets to fuel your Y Series fire! This portable fire pit is truly impressive.

solo stove

Solo Stove

Treat yourself to a smokeless firepit. Solo Stove fire pits come in 3 different sizes, depending on your preferred place to enjoy a campfire. We have the Yukon and the Bonfire on our back patio and absolutely love it!

Yukon handle

Solo Stove Handle

Depending on the size of your Solo Stove, this handle may come in very handy when it comes to moving around your fire pit and emptying ash.

Woodhaven Firewood Rack

We go through a lot of firewood around here, whether it's for a firepit, pizza oven, or offset smoker. This Woodhaven firewood rack has been perfect for storing and seasoning our firewood.

breeo outpost grill

Breeo Outpost Grill

The Outpost Grill attaches directly to the Breeo smokeless fire pits and the grill height is completely adjustable depending on your fire and cooking needs. We love it!

solo stove roasting sticks

Roasting Sticks

We joke that our kids are going to fight over these roasting sticks after we die because they'll probably outlast us. By far, the most durable and high-quality roasting sticks we've ever encountered.

firepit tools

Firepit Tools

Much like the roasting sticks, these firepit tools are high quality. And with the raging hot fires that come from a Solo Stove, you'll want some quality tools to work with.

Kindling Cracker

We're frequently having to cut smaller splits of wood to be kindling for our fire pits and pizza ovens. The Kindling Cracker is by far the best and easiest way to do this chore. 

Gifts

chocolate bacon roses

Chocolate Bacon Roses

The kids and Melissa got these for me for my birthday this year and they were a delicious and unexpected surprise!

bacon scented wrapping paper

Bacon Scented Wrapping Paper

It's true. This wrapping paper literally smells like bacon.