When the cold settles over Annapolis, serving up tantalizing BBQ might seem like an impossible feat. But, it’s more than possible, even as snowflakes dance around your head. If you’re a grilling enthusiast, you know that nothing – not even the biting cold – can keep you away from your grill. Here at Cape Ace, we applaud your dedication. In fact, we think more people should make use of their grills in winter. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of winter grilling tips designed to get you outside and cooking during the cold season.

1. Invest in a weather-resistant grill.

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Not all grills are created equal. That’s why it’s important to pick one that has high-quality materials. At Cape Ace Hardware, we stock the best names in the barbecue industry, including Blackstone, Char-Broil, Traeger, WEBER and many more. Today, some of the most weather-resistant materials on the market are cast iron and porcelain. However, select stainless-steel grills are built to withstand the elements as well. Whichever grill you choose, protect your investment with a grill cover.

2. Position your grill smartly.

In the summer, you might position your grill on a backyard patio yards away from your home. In the winter, you’ll want to reel it in, so you don’t have to traipse through the snow. A sidewalk or a driveway may make a better cooking area. Still, take caution when repositioning your grill. And, you should never operate it inside your garage or under an overhang. Doing so presents a fire hazard. So, be safe, and grill only in a well-ventilated area.

3. Layer your winter clothing.

If you’re going to be grilling outdoors, make sure you stay warm. Layer up on shirts, wear cozy boots and put on a winter jacket. Don’t forget to don a warm hat. Most importantly, when dressing, just be cautious that none of your choices might get in the way while you’re cooking. That means no tassels and definitely no loose scarves. Also, remember that snow gloves are not made for barbecuing. Use heat-resistant gloves instead.

4. Keep the lid closed.

In cold, winter weather, your grill won’t heat up as quickly. Likewise, you may find it harder to keep the grilling surface at the right temperature. That’s why it’s important to shut the lid when preheating the grill as well as when cooking.

5. Give your food time.

Just like it’ll take longer for your grill to heat up, it may take more time for your food to cook. Keeping these winter grilling tips in mind, you should expect longer cooking times. Make sure to get out your thermometer, and check the internal temperature of your food before removing it from the grill.

6. Choose winter-friendly recipes.

Smoking a brisket in the middle of winter can be done – but not without unwavering dedication. If you plan to grill in the winter, it’s wise to choose more appropriate recipes. Try this simple recipe for Fully Loaded Sweet Potatoes, which is a tasty take on the Thanksgiving classic. Instead of placing them in your oven, cook the sweet potatoes on your grill.

Need to warm up? Make this Fireball Whiskey Glazed Chicken recipe. The glaze uses cinnamon whiskey to add a dash of heat to the dish. But, if you’re looking to keep things simple, cook up some burgers and hotdogs, and call it a day.

Your grill doesn’t have to go into hibernation this winter. Stock up on everything you need for the winter grilling season at Cape Ace. Stop by today, and discover more winter grilling tips.