Bucket Lists

Posted By: Vic Clevenger NBBQA Latest News,

A few years ago there was a popular movie about a man who chased his bucket list and then found a friend who shared his passion for the challenging. The two endeavored to build their friendship while planning the ultimate bucket list quest, to climb Mt. Everest. This movie struck a chord with a lot of people so much so, everyone started creating their own bucket lists and pursuing them with great passion. I even heard of an eight-year-old boy whose bucket list consists of visiting every Gordon Ramsey restaurant. But have you ever considered having outdoor cooking bucket list? What would you like to cook but haven’t tried yet? How about the grill or smoker you’ve heard about and itching to give it a try? Maybe, you’ve even thought about something totally off the cooking wall to attempt. Bucket lists come from this desire or passion to try something new, different and challenging. Regardless of what it is, there are a few things you must do to ensure success.


An outdoor cook recently posed this question while admitting having never cooked a prime rib roast, which to some was elementary but to others led to a great conversation. When undertaking your outdoor cooking bucket list, research must be at the very beginning of this process. One doesn’t just wake up one morning and start climbing Mt. Everest but realizes their journey begins first with the necessary research. The same must also be true when choosing to undertake the challenge of cooking something you’ve never tackled before. This is where you will learn from the trial and errors of others, standing on their shoulders leading to your successful cook. What flavors to use to enhance the cut. Which charcoal or wood would give you the best results? Should I inject or not inject? These are only a few of the reasons why research is so paramount to your outdoor cooking success.


As important as research is before you undertake your bucket list cook, preparation is key. Going back to our Mt. Everest analogy, a climber prepares for every aspect of the climb, ropes, boots, spikes and tons of other items. The check list is reviewed more than once to ensure everything needed is available. Because there are no climbing stores on the side of the mountain, so prior preparation is essential. The same holds true with the outdoor cook. Who wants to begin a cook of great magnitude then have to run to the store because a needed item isn’t on the prep table? You need a clean cooker, knives, gloves, foil and most imperative will be choosing the right seasonings. There are a variety of award winning rubs (just check out the AOE list if you can’t think of any) which when used alone or combined together will deliver unbelievable results to make every cook great, not to mention, your bucket list cook memorable.


Once you’ve completed your research and done your preparation work, it’s the exciting time to execute your bucket list. Back to Everest we go for some inspiration especially for the climber. He or she won’t tackle this mountain alone but will have a support team making the trek alongside them. I remember cooking my very first bucket list item, an alligator. Everything was ready, complete and I was giddy with excitement, which was evident with the butterflies I felt. I had completed my research and each item on my preparation check list was checked off with nothing left to do but execute this bucket list cook. However, I was still anxious until I realized the support, although informal, from the NBBQA family. There were a couple who proactively reached out to make sure I was ready and then there were a couple who checked on me as the cook was progressing. Knowing there’s such a great camaraderie in the NBBQA made it so much easier to succeed than going it alone.

On your next cook whether it’s from your bucket list or just wanting to step up your tailgating game, remember these three items. Research, Prepare and Execute without fear knowing the NBBQA is there in some fashion every step of the way.