How Do Barbecues Differ Around The World?

Barbecuing is a popular method of cooking all around the world. Loved for the flavour it infuses food with, as well as the fact that it can be done in the great outdoors, each country likes to add their own twist on the barbecue. Resulting in very different flavours and foods.

Barbecues can be a diverse adventure, so let’s take a culinary tour of how some of the biggest barbecue loving cultures do it…

United States: The Pitmasters’ Paradise

You can’t mention barbecues without mentioning America, it’s practically synonymous. And each different state brings something a little different to the table.

In Southern states such as Texas and the Carolinas, you’ll find a strong emphasis on slow-cooked meats and bold, smoky flavours.

Texas is renowned for its beef brisket, while the Carolinas boast tangy vinegar-based sauces for pulled pork. Kansas City, on the other hand, celebrates a sweet and tangy tomato-based sauce, and Memphis is known for its dry-rubbed ribs.

Or if any of these don’t take your fancy, you can’t go wrong with a simple American cheeseburger, or steak.

Related recipes to try:

Pulled Pork, Fennel Coleslaw and Pineapple and Sriracha BBQ Sauce

The Easiest Coca Cola Ribs with Creamy Dip

Glazed BBQ Ribs


South America

Argentina: Asado, a South American Spectacle

In Argentina, barbecue is an art form known as “asado.” Asado is not just a meal; it’s a social event that brings friends and family together. Typically featuring beef, the star of Argentine BBQ, asado involves slow-cooking large cuts of meat over an open flame.

The use of wood and charcoal contributes to the unique flavour, and chimichurri, a sauce made with parsley, garlic, vinegar, and oil, is a common accompaniment.

Related Recipe: For a burger that uses chimichurri, we have the Brazil Grill Burger. More on Brazil below…


Brazil: Churrasco, the Gaúcho Grill

Brazilian BBQ, or churrasco, is a carnivore’s delight. Rooted in the gaucho (cowboy) tradition, churrascarias feature a continuous service of various meats, skewered and slow-cooked over an open flame. Gauchos often use a simple seasoning of salt to let the natural flavours of the meat shine.


South Korea: The Art of Korean BBQ

Korean BBQ is an interactive and communal dining experience that has gained international acclaim, having really boosted in popularity lately.

In Korea, thin slices of marinated meat, such as bulgogi (beef) or samgyeopsal (pork belly), are grilled at the table on gas or charcoal grills.

The focus is on fresh, high-quality ingredients, and the grilled meat is typically accompanied by an array of banchan (side dishes), including kimchi, pickled vegetables, and dipping sauces.

Related recipes:

Korean-style Grilled Pork Belly Lettuce Cups

Gochujang Tofu with Pajeori (Korean Spring Onion Salad)


Jamaica: Jerk BBQ, a Flavour Explosion

Jamaican BBQ, or jerk, is a celebration of bold flavours and spices. Meats, often chicken or pork, are marinated in a fiery blend of Scotch bonnet peppers, allspice, thyme, and other spices.

The meat is then slow-cooked over pimento wood, imparting a distinctive smoky and fragrant flavour. Jerk BBQ is a lively experience that reflects the Jamaican spirit.


South Africa: Braai, a Cultural Gathering

Braai is a South African BBQ tradition deeply ingrained in the nation’s culture. Similar to Argentina’s asado, braais are social gatherings where friends and family come together around an open flame.

Meat, ranging from boerewors (sausages) to lamb chops, is cooked over wood or charcoal. The unique flavour comes from the use of indigenous woods like rooibos and the aromatic wood of the sickle bush.


Japan: Yakitori, the Art of Skewering

Japanese BBQ, known as yakitori, focuses on the art of skewering and grilling bite-sized pieces of meat, typically chicken. The skewers are cooked over a charcoal grill, and the emphasis is on simplicity and balance.

Tare, a sweet and savoury soy-based glaze, is frequently brushed onto the skewers during grilling. Yakitori is a popular street food as well as a staple in izakayas, Japanese pubs.

Related Recipe: For another Japanese sauce that has gained a lot of popularity in the west, try these Teriyaki Beef Skewers with Grilled Asparagus and Sesame Dressing.


India: Tandoori, the Clay Oven Charms

In India, tandoori BBQ revolves around the iconic clay oven, the tandoor. Meats, often marinated in a mixture of yogurt and spices, are skewered and cooked in the tandoor, resulting in a charred exterior and tender interior.

Tandoori dishes, like chicken tikka and seekh kebabs, showcase the vibrant flavours of Indian cuisine.

Related Recipe: Chicken Tikka with a Yoghurt and Curry Leaf butter, and Carrot and Coriander Salad


Australia: Aussie BBQ, the Great Outdoors Tradition

In Australia, the BBQ is not just a cooking method; it’s a cherished national pastime. Aussies love cooking outdoors, whether at the beach, in parks, or in their own backyard. They’re even known to have a barbecue at Christmas.

The classic Aussie BBQ often includes grilled sausages (known as “snags”), burgers, and seafood (they actually eat prawns, not shrimp). The informal and laid-back atmosphere is a key element of the Australian BBQ culture. Don’t forget the beers!

Related Recipes: You can view all of our seafood dishes, including several shrimp recipes, right here.


Explore A World of BBQ Delights

You don’t have to travel the world to enjoy these delights (although that would be fun!).

With our recipes, and multi surface barbecues, you’ve got more meals and more methods of cooking than ever. Meaning you can experiment and enjoy global foods from Argentina to Japan, all from the comfort of your own garden.

So give something new a try, and tag us in your creations on Instagram using the tag @outbackbbqs

Create The Ultimate Outdoor Dining Experience

With all Outback barbecues, quality is built in. Choose from exceptional charcoal barbecues and stunning firepits or create the ultimate dining experience with a 4 burner or 6 burner barbecue, in eye-catching stainless steel. With Outback it’s so easy to enjoy the outdoors season after season.

With premium barbecues and stunning, summer-and-beyond firepits, Outback has a range that includes some of the world’s most trusted products for the best in outdoor living.

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