5 Reasons Why Grilling Is the Best Way to Cook

You likely already have a grill on your patio or in your backyard—recent market research shows that 70% of households own one*. It's also possible that you're a bit daunted by that hefty piece of equipment. With gas lines, igniters, grease trays, and flames, it can seem overwhelming. Feeling the heat yet? Don't worry. Grilling is one of the simplest ways to prepare healthy and delicious meals, snacks, and more. Let the experts guide you.

1. You can grill once and eat all week

Did you know you can use your grill as a meal-prep tool? Just like grilling makes every day cooking easier, it does the same for batch-cooking.

Here’s how: Anyone who’s ever meal-prepped knows that cooking multiple dishes and servings requires a little extra planning. You have to think about which oven temperature each recipe calls for, how many pots and pans and what cookware you’ll be using, and just how much counter space you have to prep it all. Taking everything to the grill simplifies the process. “You can season or marinate proteins, veggies, and potatoes in the same dish and then place them on different parts of the grill to cook simultaneously,” Leslie Fink, M.S., R.D., WW nutritionist and recipe editor and a registered dietitian explains. Larger grills may have separate temperature controls, or you can set up direct- or indirect-heat zones. (Just make sure everything is properly cooked to kill off any bacteria.)

And don’t feel like you’ll be eating the same grilled food for the next five days. Consider this: Grilled corn turns into a corn salsa; grilled tomatoes transform into a refreshing tomato chowder; grilled chicken becomes quesadillas; or grilled peppers top fish or go into a sandwich spread. Find these recipes and more in the WW app.

2. Grilling adds flavor—without needing much fat or oil

Don’t get us wrong; we love a seared stove-to-oven steak. But some recipes call for lots of butter or oil, both of which can put a dent in your Points® Budget. When it comes to grilling, you can use very little oil and still get that distinct grilled taste. “It’s one of the fastest and easiest ways to infuse food with tons of flavor—without needing to use those higher-Points™ ingredients,” explains Sherry Rujikarn, WW food director.

How? Those grill marks aren’t just for show: The charring and flame-cooking impart a naturally smoky flavor. And while veggies will also get that extra depth of flavor, the high heat simultaneously caramelizes them to bring out sweeter notes. Lean on spices and marinades to amp things up even more.

3. Grilling is the perfect solution to sweltering summer nights

We’re pretty sure the last thing you want to do on an already-hot day is heat up your stove or oven and stand around stirring. That’s why we love the grill. “Relegating the fire to the outside means your kitchen stays cool,” Rujikarn says. Plus, grilling is a mostly hands-off way to cook.

What’s more, it can sometimes be faster. Sure, your grill does need time to heat (about 10 to 15 minutes). But once it does, proteins—like hot dogs, burgers, seafood, and thin chicken cutlets—can cook in less than 10 minutes, Rujikarn explains. Even when you’re making something that takes a little longer, like bone-in chicken or a thick steak, you don’t have to babysit it. Toss it on the grill, flip it once or twice, and use that time to get a jump on cleanup or just sit in front of the fan.

4. It makes hosting more enjoyable

Excited to have friends and family over only to find yourself stuck in the kitchen for most of the night? Cue a strong desire to order takeout. Not everyone has an open-concept floor plan, and unless you’re planning to do some major home reno, grilling is a nice compromise. Strategically set your guests up near the grill so you can tend to the food and still be part of the action.

“My best advice for new grillers is to find your sweet spot,” Faulkner, director of culinary innovation and management at the Fulham Group says. Just like you may have a signature dish that you bring to every party, learn how to cook a few grilling recipes well. Then lean on those whenever you entertain. This can help you stay calm and confident in front of the grill—and not worry about any mishaps while 10 people are waiting for their food.

5. You get to cook outside

This one might seem obvious but hear us out: Grilling offers a welcome change of scenery (even if it's just the backyard). Being able to hear birds chirping, feel the breeze, and maybe even watch your kids play in the yard can make cooking seem less of a chore and more of an activity.

Depending on where you live, you might also get to spend some time in nature. Research shows a dose of greenery can have a positive effect on overall mood and health—and the benefits aren’t limited to the warmer summer months. So, if you’re feeling brave and ready to bundle up, don’t be afraid to get your grill on year-round.


*Ownership of Grills in the U.S.: Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association. (March 25, 2022.) “2022 State of the Barbecue Industry.”

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