southern bbq recipes.jpgBarbequing, also known as BBQing or grilling, was born in the deep south of the United States, and if you went down there you’d see BBQ houses almost as much as you see coffee bars up here. Although I don’t know a single Canadian who doesn’t enjoy bringing out the BBQ in the spring and grilling all season long, not many of my friends know there is a specific difference between barbequing and grilling.

Grilling is when you cook beef, pork, chicken, or vegetables over medium to high heat and your meal is finished within minutes. If you’ve ever had a patio party over at a friend’s house and your burger is done and on your plate before you can grab the potato salad, that’s grilling.

On the other side of the coin, barbequing, at least in traditional southern sense, is when you cook your meat slowly over low, indirect heat, and you use charcoal or wood chips to give whatever your grilling a smoky flavour. Some people will use actual smokers like the Char-Broil Big Easy BBQ and Smoker to achieve this process, but you can also add smoker tray to a gas grill.smoker.jpg

Take Napoleon Gas Grills for example: these BBQ powerhouses come in sizes small enough for a patio or large enough for a big family, and they’ll grill anything you put on them quickly and easily. When you want to take your culinary skills one step further, you can easily add the smoker tray to your BBQ and experience true Southern BBQ, right on your Canadian patio.



Southern BBQ Rubsouthern-dry-rub.jpg

The best way to jump in and get your feet wet with Southern BBQ is to use a Southern BBQ Rub. Here’s a recipe I make every year and keep in my fridge for a touch of summer Southern flavour. You’ll need a coffee grinder or food processor to make it.



1/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns

1/4 teaspoons Paprika

1 tablespoons Powdered Mustard

1 tablespoons Onion Powder

2 tablespoons Garlic Powder

1/2 to 1 teaspoon, or to taste Chipotle Chile Pepper


Grind peppercorn in a spice mill or coffee grinder until coarse or as desired. Add to other ingredients or add all ingredients in a blender until desired consistency. Store in an airtight jar in the freezer for up to 6 months. Use on chicken wings (marinate 6-8hrs), beef brisket (marinate 8hrs to overnight), flank steak (6-8hrs) or pork ribs (8 hours to overnight).







Southern BBQ saucesouthern bbq sauce.jpg

Now that you’ve got your rub, you’ll need a true Southern BBQ sauce. This recipe was featured on Southern Living. You’ll need liquid smoke, and you can usually find it in your grocery aisle near the hot sauce or at a specialty food store.



1 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup ketchup

1/3 cup tomato paste

1/4 cup yellow mustard

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon hot sauce (such as Tabasco)

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 tablespoon granulated garlic

1 tablespoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons hickory liquid smoke

1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup honey


Stir together first 11 ingredients in a medium saucepan. Stir in sugar and honey, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes. Use immediately, or cool completely, and refrigerate in an airtight container up to 1 week.













Southern Beef Brisketsmoked-beef-brisket-sl.jpg

With your rub and your BBQ sauce ready to go, you’re fully prepared to make Southern Beef Brisket. You can use your Napoleon smoker tray and add your favourite type of wood to smoke your brisket to perfection. Recipe from Southern Living.



1 (12- to 14-lb.) beef brisket, trimmed

1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 cup Beef Rub

3-4 pecan, hickory, or oak wood chunks

Butcher paper

El Sancho Barbecue Sauce


Brush or rub brisket with Worcestershire sauce. Sprinkle Beef Rub over brisket. Chill 1 to 4 hours.

Let brisket stand 1 hour. Meanwhile, prepare charcoal fire in smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Place wood chunks on coals. Maintain internal temperature at 250° to 260° for 15 to 20 minutes.

Place brisket, fat side down, on top food grate. Smoke brisket, covered with smoker lid, 5 hours or until a thermometer inserted in center of brisket (where the point and flat meet) registers 165°. Remove brisket, and wrap tightly in butcher paper. Return brisket to smoker, and smoke 3 to 5 more hours or until thermometer inserted in brisket registers 200°. (Check temperature each hour.)

Remove brisket from smoker; open butcher paper, and let stand 2 to 4 minutes or until no longer steaming. Let brisket stand, loosely covered with butcher paper, 2 hours.

Meanwhile, ready your Southern Barbecue Sauce. Cut brisket across the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Serve with Barbecue Sauce.

Southern BBQ Chickensouthern chicken.jpg

Once you’ve tried brisket, you’re ready to branch out into every type of Southern BBQ recipe. This BBQ chicken is amazing, and I recommend brining it before you BBQ for the best flavour. Photo and recipe from


2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 large cloves cloves garlic, chopped

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

10 chicken drumsticks

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

3/4 cup ketchup

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce


Mash brown sugar, garlic, salt, and pepper together in a mortar and pestle to form a paste. Spoon paste into a resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken, coat with the paste, squeeze out excess air, and seal the bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for 8 hours to overnight.

Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook and stir onion in hot oil until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir ketchup, vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce into onions; bring to a simmer and cook until flavors blend, about 10 minutes.

Preheat grill for medium heat and lightly oil the grate. Remove chicken from bag and discard marinade.

Cook chicken on the preheated grill until lightly browned on all sides, about 1 minute per side.

Turn off one of the grill burners or move the coals and move chicken so there is no heat source directly below it.

Baste drumsticks with the sauce and cook another 10 minutes; turn again and baste chicken with sauce. Continue to grill drumsticks until juices run clear, 10 to 15 minutes.

If these recipes don’t get you ready for BBQ season, I don’t know what will. Keep an eye out for more BBQ recipes on Plug In during the next few weeks, and check out everything BBQ online right now.

Napoleon Charcoal grills will help you create true southern BBQ
napoleon cast iron grill.jpg
Upgrade your grill with BBQ accessories
If you want a stand alone smoker, try this Napoleon Charcoal BBQ & Water smoker
Shelly Wutke
Editor TV & Home Theatre
I'm a Vancouver freelancer and tech enthusiast. When I'm not writing you'll find me on my farm with my alpacas, chickens, and honeybees. Visit my website Survivemag