Your Guide to Grilling in an Apartment

Even if you have a patio or balcony, some apartment complexes don’t permit the use of charcoal or gas grills for safety reasons.

Your Guide to Grilling in an Apartment

That doesn’t mean you can’t savor the flavor and nutritional benefits of grilled meals. Indoor grills are an alternative that allow you to enjoy the smoky goodness of fresh-grilled food.

Alternative Grilling Methods

Electric grills: This option comes in various sizes, including countertop units that are portable and convenient. They don’t use open flames, so they’re less likely to produce smoke. Some electrical grills come with elevated planes, so you can create grills marks. Add a few drops of liquid smoke to the cooking surface if you want to get that classic smoky flavor.

Stove-top grill pans: A stove-top grill is a good option if you’re short on space. These pans come with elevated groves to mimic a grill surface and allow excess fat to drain away easily, or you can baste the meat with the drippings. The direct heat from the stove is also good for searing. As with electric grills, you can use liquid smoke while you cook to add flavor.

Broiling pans: Cooking in a broiler uses the same heating method as grilling, so you can char and caramelize your dishes. Broiling is more time-consuming than grilling and can produce lots of smoke, so it’s best to stick to lean cuts of meat and thicker marinades. Keep your oven door slightly open to allow proper airflow, and preheat your broiler pan if you want to sear meat and vegetables.

Roasting with wood chips: Adding soaked wood chips is an easy way to cheat a smoky flavor. Soak wood chips in water for two to three hours and drain. Place them in a foil pouch on a lower rack in your oven and heat for 10 to 20 minutes before adding your food to a separate rack.

Off-site grilling: If you just can’t pass on the authentic, smoky cooking of a real grill, you may consider finding a place that offers public outdoor grills. Consult your property management team about community grilling areas, or try places like parks, campgrounds and public pools. You may need to schedule a time to grill at those locations.

Tips for Apartment Grilling

It’s important to know community grilling guidelines before you make a purchase. Those regulations may dictate how you grill in your apartment or use amenities like outdoor grills and kitchens.

Here are some grilling rules-of-thumb:

  • Keep your grilling surface clean to avoid smoke and flare-ups.
  • Ensure your indoor grill is away from hanging objects and countertop items.
  • Keep children and pets away from your grill, and never leave it unattended.
  • Have oven mitts and a fire extinguisher handy.
  • Open windows or exterior doors to ventilate smoke, especially if you’re broiling.
  • Practice proper etiquette in shared grilling spaces. Don’t hog grills and scrape them clean after use.

Ardent Communities has several locations with outdoor kitchens and grilling areas for residents. Connect with us online to learn more about our apartments in Columbus, Ohio.

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