The Complete Guide to Grill Hacks and Cooking Temps

We Love Fire's Complete Guide to Meat Temperatures and Grilling Hacks

CHOOSE your protein or vegetable :

Chicken Section
Beef Section
Pork Section
Veal Section
Lamb Section
Fish Section
Wild Game Section
Vegetables Section


Chicken Section

16 to 30 minutes

Grill Temp 350°F

Direct

Indirect Heat

Grilled Rosemary Chicken Cooking and preparation

Any piece of poultry needs to cook to a minimum internal temperature of 165 °F (74 °c).
Cook time ranges from an average of 8 to 15 minutes per side, and up to 30 minutes for a whole chicken.

 

Preheat your grill to a minimum of 350°F (176°C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Whole Chicken
When cooking a whole bird, the internal temperature should go up to 82 °C (180 °F).
Cook for about an hour with the lid closed. Check every 15 minutes for doneness.
350 °F (176 °C) 75 - 90 mins 165 -180 °F (74 - 82 °C )
Chicken Breast 350 °F (176 °C) 12 - 16 mins 165 -170 °F (74 - 77 °C )
Chicken Thighs
Chicken thighs are safe to eat at 74 °C (165 °F) but the taste
and texture improve when cooked up to 77–79°C (170–175°F).
350 °F (176 °C) 20 - 30 mins  165 -180 °F (74 - 82 °C )
Drumsticks 350 °F (176 °C) 20 - 30 mins  165 -180 °F (74 - 82 °C )
Wings 350 °F (176 °C) 16 - 25 mins  165 -180 °F (74 - 82 °C )
Ground—burgers, sausages, meatballs 350 °F (176 °C) 16 mins 165 °F (74 °C )

Chicken Thigh and Drumsticks Chef's Tips

Clean your grill without the use of chemicals with an onion! While your grill is still hot, cut an onion in half and use it to scrub the grate. The oil from the onion cleans away debris and preps your grill creating an non-stick surface that adds flavor to your meats.

 

Butterfly a whole chicken by cutting out the backbone with scissors. A butterflied chicken will lie flat on the grill and will cook faster.

 

Marinate your meat for a minimum of 30 minutes so it’s moist and tender. Marinate overnight for the best results.

Top Marinades

Lemon mustard marinade
(marinates 6 chicken breasts)

 

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar or other vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 tbsp Dijon or Spicy Brown mustard
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder

Source: momontimeout.com

Honey mustard marinade
(marinates 4 chicken breasts)

 

  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 1/3 cup mustard
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne

Source: asweetpeachef.com

Fajita marinade
(marinates 4-6 chicken breasts)

 

  • 2/3 cup lime juice (approx. 3-4 limes)
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice (no sugar added)
  • 4 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes, or more to taste
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 tbsp olive oil

Source: asweetpeachef.com


Chicken Section

10 to 16 minutes

Grill Temp 400°F

Direct

Indirect Heat

Steak on a Charcoal Grill Cooking and preparation

About a half hour before cooking, bring your steaks to room temperature. Once cooked, let the meat rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Medium rare - 10 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Medium - 14 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Well done - 17 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
New York strip 350° F (176° C) 3 - 10 mins 130 -165° F (55 - 74° C)
Sirloin Tips 350° F (176° C) 18 - 25 mins 130 -165° F (55 - 74° C)
Filet Mignon
360 - 400° F (182 - 204° C) 3 - 10 mins 130 -165° F (55 - 74° C)
Tenderloin (2-3 lbs)
400° F (204° C) 8 - 14 mins 135 -170° F (57 - 77° C)
Mechanically Tenderized Steaks
400° F (204° C) 8 mins 145° F (63° C)
Ground—burgers, sausages, meatballs 400° F (204° C) 2 - 5 mins 160° F (71° C)

Beef Patties on the Grill Chef's Tips

The thickness of each cut determines the cooking time. Keep the lid closed for a thick steaks to cook faster, leave it open for a thinner cuts.

 

When making your hamburger patties, place an ice cube or a small cube of cold butter in the center. It will slowly melt when on the grill, keeping your patties moist.

Top Marinades

Steak marinade
(makes 8 servings)

 

  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 3 tbsp dried basil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp hot pepper sauce (optional)
  • 1 tsp dried minced garlic (optional)

Source: allrecipes.com

Greek marinade
(makes 8 servings)

 

  • 4 grape tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/2 of a minced shallot
  • 1/4 cup Kalamata olives, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme, leaves only
  • 2 tsp fresh parsley, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Source: plated.com

Korean-style marinade
(makes 4 servings)

 

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Source: plated.com


Pork Section

8 to 30 minutes

Grill Temp 350-400°F

Direct

Indirect Heat

Pork Chops on a Gas Grill Cooking and preparation

Preheat your grill to a temperature of approximately 177–205°C (350–400°F).
Pork chops should be cooked for about 4 minutes each side.

 

Preheat your grill to a minimum of 350-400 °F (176 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Pork Chops
325-350° F (163 - 176° C) 10 mins 145° F (63° C)
Ribs 350 - 400° F (176 - 204° C) 30 - 120 mins 145° F (63° C)
Tenderloin 400° F (204° C) 10 - 25 mins 145° F (63° C)
Ground-burgers, sausages, meatballs
400° F (204° C) 15 mins 160° F (71° C)

Pork Chops on the Grill Chef's Tips

For a seared exterior with a tender, juicy interior, sear your meat over high heat and finish cooking slowly over low heat. Use a spatula when flipping your meat, so as not to pierce it and let the juices out.

 

When grilling pork, keep your meat moist and add additional flavor by spraying your meat with apple juice or apple cider vinegar.

Top Marinades

Pineapple marinade
(makes 6 servings)

 

  • 1 cup crushed pineapple
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp powdered cloves

Source: thespruceeats.com

Lemon pepper marinade
(marinates 6 pork chops)

 

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup light soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
  • 2 tsp minced garlic

Source: allrecipes.com

Asian – style marinade
(marinates 6 pork chops)

 

  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sake
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp ​brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp mild chili sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp ginger, fresh and minced
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1 pinch salt

Source: thespruceeats.com


Veal Section

12 to 18 minutes

Grill Temp 350-400°F

Direct Heat

Veal on a Grill Cooking and preparation

Let veal sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling. Be careful not to overcook.
Sear 3 minutes per side over high heat then transfer to low heat to finish cooking.

 

Medium rare - 10 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Medium - 14 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Well done - 17 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Shoulder Kabobs
350° F (176° C) 16 - 18 mins 160° F (71° C)
Rib Chop
350° F (176° C) 12 - 14 mins 160° F (71° C)
Loin Chop
350° F (176° C) 12 - 14 mins 160° F (71° C)
Arm or Blade Steak
350° F (176° C) 16 - 18 mins 160° F (71° C)
Mechanically Tenderized Steaks
400° F (204° C) 16 mins 145° F (63° C)
Ground—burgers, sausages, meatballs 400° F (204° C) 12 - 14 mins 160° F (71° C)

Olive Oil Marinade for Veal Chef's Tips

Veal is so lean you need to do some fat replacement by brushing it with a light coating of oil or by marinating it with an olive oil-based marinade.

 

The best veal cuts to grill are shoulder, rib and loin chops, as they are tender cuts and cook best in hot, dry heat. The grill adds flavor to the veal and cooks it before it dries out.

Top Marinades

Basil coating
(marinates 4 veal chops)

 

  • 4 tsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Source: foodandwine.com

Tuscan-style coating
(marinates 4 veal chops)

 

  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 cup sage leaves
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Source: foodandwine.com

Mustard marinade
(marinates 4 veal chops)

 

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp bourbon whisky or white wine
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp finely chopped capers
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • salt and pepper

Source: ricardocuisine.com


Lamb Section

8 to 100 minutes

Grill Temp 400°F

Direct Heat

Lamb on a Grill Cooking and preparation

Salt your lamb about 40 minutes before cooking. Start grilling with indirect heat with the lid closed.

 

Medium rare - 10 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Medium - 14 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)
Well done - 17 mins at 400 °F (63 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Chops
400° F (204° C) 6 - 12 mins 145 - 160° F (63 - 71° C)
Butterflied Leg
400° F (204° C) 80 - 100 mins 145 - 160° F (63 - 71° C)
Sirloin
400° F (204° C) 6 - 12 mins 145 - 160° F (63 - 71° C)
Ribs 400° F (204° C) 6 - 12 mins 145 - 160° F (63 - 71° C)
Mechanically Tenderized Steaks
400° F (204° C) 16 mins 145° F (63° C)
Ground—burgers, sausages, meatballs 400° F (204° C) 8 - 10 mins 160° F (71° C)

Grilled Lamb Chef's Tips

Lamb sticks to the grill more than other meats, so be sure to coat it with oil. Since it has a strong flavor, complement it with garlic, basil, wine, olive oil, curry, dry mustard, rosemary, thyme or pepper. Trim the fat off the edges before grilling.

 

Use fresh rosemary as skewers. They’re sturdy enough and give extra flavor to your meat.

Top Marinades

Garlic rosemary marinade
(marinates 4 lamb chops)

 

  • 1 tsp finely chopped lemon zest
  • 1 garlic clove, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary or 1/2 tsp of dried
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • pepper to taste

Source: epicurious.com

Greek-style marinade
(marinates 4 lamb chops)

 

  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, roughly chopped
  • 1 whole bay leaf
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp coarse ground black pepper

Source: thespruceeats.com

Zesty oregano marinade
(marinates 4 lamb chops)

 

  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 crushed dried bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper
  • juice and rind of one orange

Source: bestrecipes.com.au


Fish Section

8 to 24 minutes

Grill Temp 400 - 450°F

Direct Heat

Fish on a Grill Cooking and preparation

Fish should be cooked until its flesh is white or pink and flakes easily. Lobster and crab should be cooked until their flesh is opaque and pearly. Scallops are ready when their flesh turns milky white, opaque and firm, while shrimp are ready when their flesh turns pink. Clams, oysters and mussels must be discarded when their shells don’t open during cooking.

 

Preheat your grill to a minimum of 400-450 °F (205-232 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Fish - Whole
400° F (204° C) 24 mins 140° F (60° C)
Fish - Fillets
450° F (232° C) 20 mins 140° F (60° C)
Shrimps
450° F (232° C) 8 - 12 mins 145° F (63° C)
Clams 450° F (232° C) 12 - 16 mins 145° F (63° C)
Crab - Whole
450° F (232° C) 20 mins 145° F (63° C)
Lobster Tail
450° F (232° C) 16 mins 145° F (63° C)

Grilled Fish Chef's Tips

To grill fish without having it stick to the grill, cook it on a bed of lemon slices. Lemons will also add extra flavor to your fish.

 

Another way to avoid fish from sticking, is to keep the skin on the side that sits on the grill. When cooked, simply lift the fish off the skin.

Top Marinades

Fish marinade
(marinates 2 [6 ounces] filets)

 

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Source: allrecipes.com

Shrimp marinade
(marinates 2 pounds of shrimp)

 

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tbsp hot pepper sauce
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper

Source: thespruceeats.com

Mild curry marinade
(marinates 2 [6 ounces] filets)

 

  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • pinch of sea salt
  • pinch of black pepper

Source: upfitness.com


Wild Game Section

8 to 16 minutes

Grill Temp 350 - 400°F

Direct

Indirect Heat

Wild Game on a Grill Cooking and preparation

Bring the meat to room temperature before grilling.
Cook quickly on a hot, preheated grill.

 

Preheat your grill to a minimum of 400-450 °F (205-232 °C)

Cut Grill Temp Cook Time Internal Temp
Whole Rabbit
Baste every 15 minutes
350° F (176° C) 2 - 5 hours 170° F (77° C)
Rabbit Leg
350° F (176° C) 16 - 20 mins 165° F (74° C)
Deer Steak
Steaks approx. 1 1/2 inches thick
450° F (232° C) 12 - 14 mins 145° F (63° C)
Bison Steak
Cook time for medium doneness
450° F (232° C) 12 mins 120 - 140° F (49 - 60° C)
Ground—meat mixtures, sausage 450° F (232° C) 10 mins 165° F (74° C)

Grilled Rabbit Chef's Tips

Game meat is better pink than well done. Avoid overcooking for it produces a bitter, metallic taste. Since wild game is lean, wrap it in bacon or use a marinade to baste it while grilling.

 

To make good burgers with ground deer meat, adding fat is recommended. Add 15% to 20% of ground pork or beef to your ground venison to increase the fat content. Grind the meat together twice in order to distribute the fat evenly.

Top Marinades

Easy red wine venison marinade
(marinates 4 steaks)

 

  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 to 6 bay leaves
  • A dozen black peppercorns, cracked
  • A good pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds

Source: honest-food.net

Garlic and herb rabbit marinade
(marinates a 3-4 pound whole rabbit)

 

  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Source: louisianacookin.com

Easy herb bison marinade
(marinates 2 steaks)

 

  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • juice of half lemon
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 6 branches fresh thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and cracked

Source: eatsomethingsexy.com


Vegetable Section

5 to 20 minutes

Grill Temp 350 - 400°F

Direct

Vegetables on a Grill Cooking and preparation

Grilled vegetables are delicious. Grilling them brings out their flavors in a way you can never achieve with a conventional oven. Whether you eat them as a side dish or as your main course, you want your vegetables to be grilled just the right way.

 

Preheat your grill to a minimum of 350-400 °F (205-232 °C)

Veggie Grill Temp Cook Time
Asparagus
Snap off tough ends. Roll in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Turn often on grill.
400° F (204° C) 4 - 5 mins
Brussel Sprouts
Brush with butter, sprinkle with garlic powder, black pepper and seasoned salt. Squeeze lime juice on them before removing from the grill.
400° F (204° C) 10 mins
Cauliflour
Cut in slices. Brush with olive oil, sprinkle with brown sugar and seasoned salt.
350° F (176° C) 10 mins
Corn on the Cob
Pull back the husk, remove silk and soak in cold water 15 minutes. Pull the husk back up so it stays closed.
350° F (176° C) 10 mins
Eggplant
Cut in half lengthwise or in slices of 10 mm (1/2 inch) thick. Brush with olive oil.
350° F (176° C) 10 mins
Fennel Bulbs
Cut in half lengthwise or in slices of 5 mm (¼ inch) thick. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. (Lightly steam large bulbs before grilling.)
400° F (204° C) 10 - 12 mins
Green Beans
Marinate beans for 30 minutes in olive oil, garlic and salt. Place on a grill pan.
350° F (176° C) 10 mins
Mushrooms
Wrap in aluminum foil if small, brush with olive oil.
350° F (176° C) 7 - 8  mins
Potatoes and sweet potatoes
Cut in 5 mm (¼ inch) slices. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
350° F (176° C) 15 - 20  mins
Sweet Peppers
Cut in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Brush with olive oil.
350° F (176° C) 4 - 5 mins
Zucchini
Cut lengthwise in thirds or halves. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
350° F (176° C) 10 mins

Grilled Vegetables Chef's Tips

To cook your vegetables on the grill, cut them in large enough pieces so they don’t fall through, or use skewers. Marinate them or brush them with a mix of olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic. Grill them over medium heat.

 

Another way to cook vegetables on the grill is to wrap them in aluminum foil or put them in a pan, once again, season them with garlic, salt, pepper and a bit of oil. Cook veggies in a pan at medium heat.

Top Marinades

Honey and balsamic vinegar veggie marinade

 

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 4 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • salt to taste

Source: tasteofhome.com

Fresh herb veggie marinade

 

  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Source: myrecipes.com

Spicy asian veggie marinade

 

  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp seasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 garlic clove, creamed or pressed
  • 1/2 Fresno chile, minced
  • 2 tbsp neutral oil – vegetable, canola, grapeseed

Source: grillingoutdoorrecipes.com

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