Best Grilling & BBQ Cookbooks

5 new cookbooks to celebrate the art of outdoor cooking
Best New Grilling Cookbooks 2017
Photo: Tasting Table

It's not really summer until the inaugural cookout. But after the glow of those first coals burns out, you'll need inspiration to keep the fire going all the way through corn season. Get grilling with these five new cookbooks by your side—just keep them away from the flame.

① Praise the Lard, by Mike Mills and Amy Mills ($15)

Some traits are undeniably genetic—eye color, freckles—and you can go ahead and add "barbecue genius" to that list. Illinois barbecue icon Mike "The Legend" Mills and his daughter, Amy, will teach you how to glaze ham with cherry soda, master their legendary ribs and make bourbon compound butter that works on just about everything. The traditions shared throughout the book's pages will inspire you to go outside and create some of your own.

② Red, White, and 'Que, by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig ($15)

This duo is known for their skillful use of grilled vegetables, and that's where they shine here. There's a range of both classic dishes (sausages, sliders, smoked ham) and techniques you won't find elsewhere, like Parmesan-basted bundles of grilled kale and corn husk-wrapped turkey breast. Our favorite part? The dessert chapter that goes way beyond a simple platter of grilled fruit: Think grilled brioche with honeyed ricotta and charred chocolate crostini.

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③ The World Is Your Burger, by David Michaels ($23)

Make your way through the addictively entertaining history of fast-food giants as you flip through this glorious burger encyclopedia. Go from McDonald's to fine dining, where you'll learn just how Daniel Boulud turns his burger up to 11 (i.e., with truffles and foie gras). Quotes from the likes of Angie Mar and Wolfgang Puck, exclusive photos, and a full range of recipes prove the humble hamburger's status as a cultural phenomenon—just in case you were in doubt.

④ Pitmaster, by Andy Husbands and Chris Hart ($13)

This book first takes you through the basics of backyard cooking before heading on a regional-style road trip through North Carolina, Kansas City, Texas and more. Scattered throughout are "guest pitmasters," who share their tips and success stories, which just might inspire you to go out and create your own barbecue dynasty. Next stop: Memphis in May.

⑤ Grill Smoke BBQ, by Ben Tish ($20)

Ben Tish's beautifully photographed guide takes you way beyond your standard rack of ribs. The recipes are more along the lines of paprika-rubbed smoky quail, baby artichokes with pine nut purée and thyme-smoked mussels. You'll become a master of using your grill on all fronts, from smoked ice for cocktails to quick-grilled herbs for an unexpected seasoning.

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