Best BBQ Books

Written in 2024
by Adam

    Do you consider yourself to be a BBQ pitmaster? Without a shadow of a doubt, you must have gone through a lot of trial and error to earn this badge. Let’s face it that there is a lot of free information around nowadays, but nothing beats the ability to gain some insight from someone who has been grilling away daily for the last 30 years or more.

    Many people would happily offer something in return to gather a bit of knowledge on how a winning BBQ meal should look. 

    We’ve taken the liberty to show our readers where they can find the 10 best BBQ books that will present them with grilling methods that gained new heights and recipes that are mouthwatering good. 

    In no particular order, here is a short overview of some of the best ones that discuss pro BBQ tips on how to grill and smoke the best way possible.

    10 - Peace, Love & Barbecue: Recipes, Secrets, Tall Tales by Mike Mills

    This guy is a legend when it comes to barbecue secrets. Besides, it is not for nothing he was awarded the title of GrandMaster and won the Memphis in May BBQ competition. The book he wrote has a bit of everything - a collection of recipes, memoirs, and stories of the legendary pitmaster. 



    9 - Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling by Meathead Goldwyn

    If you ever wondered how marinades work and how you too can cook BBQ like a real master, then this book is for your eyes only. 

    Craig went all out to combine years and years of research, coupled with a healthy dose of science, and a bit of wit to bring this one-of-a-kind outdoor cooking book together. Over here, you will discover top class cooking methods he used to perfect his art of grilling and barbecue. Quite a remarkable achievement we would say and a worthy collection. He put his money where his mouth is by applying what he has learned in ways unimaginable.



    8 - The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey Through Texas Barbecue by Daniel Vaughn

    Fully illustrated and comprehensive BBQ guide all the way from Texas. 

    Daniel brought the taste from where he originally came from with him when he moved to Texas back in the day. But, he went one step further than just sharing what he knew about BBQ and all things nice. He put his words he wrote as a blogger and barbecue writer to action and perfected the art of BBQ cooking. This is no ordinary cookbook, but it takes you back down memory lane into the back roads of all things barbecue. A true gem and a worthy read that you can put into practice.



    7 - Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto by Aaron Franklin

    Here you’ll find some of the best BBQ kept secrets unveiled to you. 

    As a New York Bestseller, this is one book you should let out of your sight at any given point. Aaron began a revolution from the word go when he opened his BBQ joint way back in Austin during 2009. Cattle Ranch owners were always big on BBQ, but they haven’t seen anything like this before. We urge you to go ahead and delve deeper into the 224 pages of what is deemed a complete brisket-cooking education from the most celebrated pitmaster ever.



    6 - Big Bob Gibson’s BBQ Book: Recipes and Secrets from a Legendary Barbecue Joint by Chris Lilly

    As you can tell from the cover alone, this is one book that is packed with succulent recipes. 

    It is not every day that your BBQ recipes and secrets receive such honour. Big Bob Gibson did it again. This grandmaster was awarded the World Championship BBQ Cook for six years in a row. Can you imagine how proud you would be if your restaurant is one of the select few that managed to serve up the best barbecue meals for 85 years and longer. What a legacy



    5 - Project Smoke by Steven Raichlen

    Seven steps to smoked goodness is what we would call these recipes, don’t you agree?

    Revered as the BBQ Bible as far as smoking meats are concerned, this step by step guide says it all about how Steven managed to master the art and craft of smoking hot recipes. Each and every one of his recipes turned into winners. This guy nails it time and again and shares everything he knows to the benefit of BBQ lovers out there.



    4 - Slow Fire: The Beginner’s Guide to Barbecue by Ray DR BBQ Lampe

    Wouldn’t you agree that the tender looking meat presented on the front cover is very tempting and makes one want to try your hand at one of the recipes immediately?

    BBQ tools, recipes and techniques at its best is what this book brings to the table. Who doesn’t want a chance to experiment with the mouthwatering, smoky, fall-off-the-bone meat that was put together by someone like Ray Lampe, an expert in barbecue matters? In this copy you will find a bit of wisdom from an accomplished barbecue master when he shares 68 of his best recipes with you.



    3 - Smoke: New Firewood Cooking: How to Build Flavor with Fire on the Grill and in the Kitchen by Tim Byres

    The secrets of knowing how to build flavour using only fire is not something to be shared with just anyone. Count yourself one of the lucky few.

    This Texan chef shows us all a thing or two by demonstrating the fact that there is more to BBQ than meets the eye. Tim goes deep by taking everything apart with regards to what barbecue, camp cooking, and grilling is supposed to mean. It is a case of going back to your roots and discovering what worked years ago, what went well in most restaurants, and what is working right now. This book is a real gem in the way it educates us on what is known as an exceptional way of cooking.



    2 - Smoke & Spice: Cooking with Smoke, the Real Way to Barbecue by Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison

    When you cast your eyes over the pages of this famous couple’s cookbook, then you cannot help but wonder how on earth these two came up with such outstanding slow-cooking, miracle recipes. Talking about going modern. This book is a must-have edition, presented to us by real people with a heart for some of the best BBQ cooking recipes around, beckoning us all to try it out. Besides, it may take you some time that is well worth it to go through 560 pages of pure barbecue goodness. 

    Did we mention that the couple got the James Beard Cookbook Award?



    1 - Diva Q’s Barbecue: 195 Recipes for Cooking with Family, Friends & Fire by Danielle Bennett

    This is the kind of title that warms one’s heart from deep within. No doubt, Danielle was afforded the opportunity to learn firsthand what it takes to master the art of pure backyard cooking. There is no room for guessing once you start paging through the recipes as to what it would mean for you once you get to try it out. 

    Once you go on a journey and crawl your way through some of the 185 grilling favourites, you will find it hard to take a breather so you may actually try your hand at some of his mouth-watering recipes and surprise your friends and family with a bit of BBQ that you prepared by following the mentorship of someone like Danielle. You will find the instructions provided crystal clear and just what you needed to become a master at anything BBQ. 


    Written by Adam

    Adam is the creator of the SmokeGuys website, running it since 2016. Hater of coriander, lover of all things meat... Adam currently works in marketing with a dream of being able to make food his full-time 'job' in the longer term.

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