If you are fortunate enough to go out for a barbecue with a chef or foreign friends, soon someone will point out that grilling and braising are not the same thing. This situation occurs when people from different countries gather together, as these terms have different meanings in different regions.

When this situation occurs, some people try to explain that the difference between smoking and barbecue is only a matter of time. The upcoming BBQ party may turn into a debate.

What are the differences between the three types of barbecue: barbecue, braising, and smoking?


What is barbecue?

Barbecue is the process of quickly cooking food over hot heat (using charcoal or gas as fuel). In the context of barbecue, being hot and fast refers to cooking at temperatures of 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celsius) or higher for less than an hour.

For foods such as steak and ribs, the temperature should be close to 450 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit to shorten cooking time. Please remember that the best barbecue meat is the most tender cuts, such as rib eye steak, strip steak, T-bone, and other raw cuts from ribs and short loin. Quick cooking is the best way to maintain tenderness and prevent overcooking and drying. Cooking juicy and delicious meat slices over hot heat in a short period of time is the best method.

There are not many techniques for grilling steak, but this is not the case with fish, vegetables, or poultry. For more exquisite food, it is usually better to shoot at lower temperatures, which is where additional techniques come in handy.


What is braising and grilling?

If barbecue is a quick way to cook small pieces of meat, then braising is the best choice for grilling large pieces of meat. We’re talking about a whole pork shoulder, beef brisket, grilled ribs, spareribs, and even a whole turkey.

To cook these large pieces of meat in the oven, the temperature needs to be very low: between 190 and 300 degrees Fahrenheit, but you may see that the recipe requires a temperature between 225 and 250 degrees Fahrenheit. It takes several hours to cook a large piece of meat at such low temperatures. The biggest trick is to maintain this temperature during cooking.

On a gas grill, the knob is basically set to low temperature.

Different ways of BBQ: barbecue, braised barbecue, smoking barbecue

What is smoking barbecue?

Smoking is like an extreme version of barbecue: in fact, you are cooking food with the smoke generated by smoky chunks or slices of pecans, leguminous shrubs, apples, or cherries, each adding its own flavor to the meat.

The temperature of smoking is even lower than the temperature of roasting to ensure that the smoky flavor can penetrate into the meat and continue cooking. Smoking food at temperatures between 125 and 175 degrees Fahrenheit; If the temperature is too high and the meat is cooked too quickly, it cannot achieve a smoked flavor. Baking at this bottom temperature often takes 24 hours a day.

Among these three methods, smoking is the one that requires the most professional knowledge.