Grilling is one of the most sought ways to prepare briskets, turkey, or fish. You might question whether the destructive heat, flares, and uncontrolled fires that go into preparing your favorite bite are safe, especially around the house.
Charcoal grills have had their issues with dangerous flares in the past, which become problematic to control when they become giant flames. Fortunately, flares and uncontrollable flames are uncommon in modern grills, meaning pellet grills are safer than traditional smokers are.
Even though many pellet grill manufacturers have taken many steps to guarantee safety, there’re some steps to follow to reduce the chances of uncontrolled fires reaching some of your valuables in the backyard or wherever when having your outdoor cooking experience. Here is some information about pellet grills’ safety and tricks to minimize the risk of accidental fires while using them.
What Is A Pellet Grill?
Pellet grills are smokers that combine the aesthetics of modernity with a few traditions to give the best experience when grilling your meat outside. The cookware comes in many variants, but the common ones are the stainless steel typical in many stores. You can also have yours made with cast iron, but overall, they all work alike.
The popularity of pellet grills has grown over the decades, in part because of their impressive safety features. They have added several fail-safe features that put them miles ahead of traditional charcoal smokers. Traditional charcoal smokers require round-the-clock monitoring. You have to add fuel yourself while still rotating the meat.
Important Safety Features in Pellet Grills
Pellet grills have a cooking chamber with a temperature check meter that uses the same principle as that in the modern-day oven. You can regulate heat whenever it goes beyond unsafe levels with the touch of a button.
One thing you can also look out for when shopping in the market for a grill is a remote-controlled pellet grill. The remote helps move you to safer distances when the heat becomes unbearable because of growing flames when oils drip on the hot pellets.
While holding the remote, you can tune up the heat for a blazing hot experience or reduce it to a gradual cook from a safe distance.
Safety Consideration When Buying Pellet Grills
Modern pellet cookers are largely safe, but that should not make you drop your guard when buying one. Always go for high-quality ones that have improved safety features. The same goes for the fuel that helps keep the equipment burning. If you do not pick out the correct quality pellets that are 100% natural hard or fruitwood, you increase the risk of harm.
Wood pellets come in different variants; cheaper ones are tempting to pick while out shopping. However, they may not work best. Some pellets’ only work is to keep a fire going, which differs from those used to cook food.
Other wood fuels have harmful chemicals as active ingredients that your food might absorb when cooking, eventually causing you harm. So be on the lookout for the correct ones when making a purchase.
How to Use a Pellet Grill Safely
While using a grill seems straightforward, it might help to have some safety tips up your sleeve before sparking it into life. Here is some information to start you up.
How long until the grilled meat is ready for eating?
Using a heat probe is an effective way to know if your briskets or any meat thrown on the grill is ready. Most modern heat grills have a heat probe at their tops, which tells the correct internal temperature of your meat.
While there is no consensus on the figures to determine the correct temperature for correctly cooked meat, it is advisable to have the heat probe read at least 160℉. For the likes of ham, you can go as low as 145℉ and chicken as high as 165℉. You can download a simple temperature chart for a variety of cooked meats online, and have it with you when grilling or smoking.
Uncooked meat is unsafe, and bacteria probably have their way through it when it is raw. You risk hospitalization when you don’t grill your food for some time until fully cooked.
Where is the best location to place a pellet grill when smoking?
When setting up your pellet grill, ensure you do it in an open space. Avoid grilling directly under low-lying trees or near wooden fences. Further, grill outside as much as possible if the conditions allow it. While in the house, you can use your oven or other grills that do not smoke or use conventional fire.
Occasionally, using a pellet grill leaves behind meat leftovers on the grill. You might think it is okay to put new meat on the noticeable leftovers. The thinking behind this is that the heat will do the cleaning for you. Doing that might instead create huge fireballs. Leftover meats are prone to accidental fires when other chunks of fire fall on them while cooking.
Pellet grills require electricity to run them, meaning many people have them close to their houses. However, if you can find a long extension cord to set the smoker up, the better. Having the cooking equipment far away from the house or any material susceptible to fire is a plus when reducing the risk of a fire hazard.
Are pellet grills safe around children?
For teens who know how to work a pellet grill, it is okay to leave them around the grill. However, young children should never remain alone with a cooking pellet grill.
The children could rotate the fire control knobs without saying a word to you, or rotate the meat so it flares when meat oils drip down and touch the burning pellets. In the case of accidental fires, young children risk injury; they also put the entire household at risk of bigger fires.
How to vary cooking temperatures safely when using pellet grills
Pallets pass through the auger in the pellet smoker, where they find their way to the cooking chamber gradually using a fuel monitor. While in the cooking chamber, they meet air that comes through an air inlet that regulates the cooking heat.
Begin your cooking by regulating the air hole to the cooking activity of the day. If you have a lot of time grilling, set the smoker to low heat to avoid fires.