13 Tips That Will Change the Way You Grill Forever

grilled meat
Dan Gentile/Thrillist
Dan Gentile/Thrillist
Welcome to Grillist, our annual celebration of all things smoke and fire. Join us all summer long as we get up in your grill with expert BBQ advice, insightful interviews, and bad grilling puns -- but mostly those first two.

Sure, he knows how to make perfect chili, but Tim Love is perhaps best known for his superhuman ability to rock a grill. Lucky for us average humans, the Austin Food and Wine Festival co-founder teaches his grill skills to laymen during that weekend's most popular demo. We sat in on it in order to snare this bakers' dozen of game-changing tips.

Dan Gentile/Thrillist

1. Season from up high

When dusting your meat with spices, it's natural to hold your hand just over the meat. But raising your hand higher helps the spices to spread out and avoids salt clumps.

2. Baste your steak with peanut oil

It tastes better than other oils and is capable of withstanding more heat.

3. Use twice the spice

You think you're using enough, but you're not. Double up on spices. You won't regret it.

Dan Gentile/Thrillist

4. Turn the steak 90 degrees

Putting meat on a grill causes the temperature to drop in that space, so if you're flipping it onto the same spot, there's less heat. You won't get a good sear. Another plus: badass grill marks.

5. You need twice the grill space as you think

If your grill says it fits 20 burgers, it actually only fits 10, because when you flip them you'll need to move them to a fresh space.

6. Your top rack is not just for buns or asparagus

It's to create an oven with which to finish the meat.

removing lid
Dan Gentile/Thrillist

7. Leave the damn grill alone

It's tempting to always be messing with your meat (zing!), but have confidence and keep the lid on the grill to maintain stable temperature and smoke.

8. Let meat sit for at least 10 minutes

Meat tightens up when cooked because there's still energy left in that muscle, so it's important to give it time to relax.

9. Grill your steaks ahead of time

If you cook the steaks beforehand, then throw them back on the top rack or the corner of the grill to finish them off, your buddies won't be waiting until after dark to eat.

Dan Gentile/Thrillist

10. Dehusk your corn to ensure a good char

Otherwise you're just steaming it. You won't get that bright, burnt flavor or the full effect of spices like paprika and chili powder.

11. Your corn is done when it starts to pop

You don't want it that burnt.

12. Season the flesh side of fish and salt the skin

The flesh will better showcase spice, whereas kosher salt will help dry out your skin and make it crispy.

13. Come from behind to flip the fish

The natural motion of your wrist will cause you to pull up on the spatula, which can tear the fish. When you're ready to flip it, come up from behind the fish and you'll be much more likely to end up with a beautiful-looking filet.

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Dan Gentile is a former staff writer on Thrillist's National Food and Drink team. He loses serious Texas points for not owning a grill. Follow him to tweets from his friends' backyard grill-outs at @Dannosphere.