Every summer, outdoor chefs in neighborhoods are firing up their charcoal, propane, or natural gas outdoor grill. Roll down the car window on any weekend evening in towns across America and most likely the smell of hamburgers, steaks or BBQ ribs will arouse the saliva glands.
Whether you are having a neighborhood get-together, summer party or cooking outdoors to avoid heating up the kitchen, undercooked or overcooked food is always a grill master’s challenge. If you cut the meat, the flavor of the juices run out; raising the lid on the grill loses the temperature, and worse, serving undercooked meat is not good for one’s belly or reputation.
The key to good grilling is to monitor the temperature for perfection. If you like to cook (and eat) like me, the Oregon Scientific AW131 Grill-Right Wireless Talking BBQ/Oven Thermometer is a must.
Pull up a chair, grab a drink and let’s take a look…
I recently acquired a gas grill after years of using charcoal. I like using a grill in the heat of summer or standing in deep snow.
For me using gas gives me control on the heat whether I’m cooking chicken, a turkey, roast beef, fish, burgers, hot dogs or pork chops. However, I am always wondering about whether the meat is moist by guessing the time, or having to cut into it and check. The Grill-Right Talking BBQ/Oven Thermometer is simple to operate.
There are two parts – the sensor unit with probe and the programmable handheld unit. Batteries and instructions are included.
According to Oregon Scientific,
“We’ll let you know when your BBQ is ready from a football field away! No need to wait by the grill to find out when dinner is ready–this wireless thermometer verbally alerts you when the meat has reached the perfect temperature. Program your choice of eight entrées, choose the doneness desired and you’re good to grill.
Features include: Digital LCD screen with remote wireless probe to identify temperature/readiness of meat; Speaks in five languages with corresponding display (English, Spanish, German, French, Danish); and Programmable entrée programs include beef, lamb, veal, hamburger, pork, turkey, chicken, and fish.”
Check out the Specifications and features:
- Digital LCD screen with remote wireless probe to identify temperature/readiness of meat
- Speaks in five languages with corresponding display (English, Spanish, German, French, Danish)
- Sensor has temperature range from 32°F to 572°F
- Programmable entrée programs include beef, lamb, veal, hamburger, pork, turkey, chicken, and fish
- Four doneness selections include rare, medium rare, medium, and well done
- Two verbal and three audio alert options let you know the status of your meal—almost ready, ready, and overcooked
- Audio alarm sounds when selected temperature is reached
- Main unit will receive the probe signal from up to 330 feet away
- Stainless steel probe detaches from sensor for easy cleaning
- Low battery indicator
- 6-inch probe with 40-inch wire
- 2 AA (main unit) and 2 AAA (transmitter), included
So rather than sweating over a grill and constantly stressing whether the meat is just right, the nice lady on the voiceover will alert you when the temperature is perfect. There are five languages – English, Spanish, German, French, Danish – to prompt you with an enthusiactic “Almost Ready!” and “Ready!” There is an audio alert when the unit is out of range or when the meat is overcooked.
There is a base sensor operated by two AAA batteries with a detachable stainless steel probe. The probe cord is approximately 40 plus inches long and is thin enough keep the lid closed on the grill. The probe itself is 6 inches long to measure a thick cut of meat such as a ham.
On the programmable handheld unit itself, are eight setting for the type of meat and doneness.
The unit is simple to operate; rotate through the menu for your type of meat and select the doneness desired. There is a belt clip that conveniently allows you to roam the backyard and multitask. I watered the vegetable garden, tossed the stick with my dogs and caught up on my email on the iPhone on the swing while cooking with the Grill Right earlier today.
The Grill Right worked as advertised, with a couple of exceptions to note. If the Grill Right doesn’t respond with a temperature reading, there is a tiny reset button on both units to transmit properly. Also it pays to be prudent to double-check the meat temperature with a regular meat thermometer. I cooked a beer can chicken and while the Grill Right alerted me that the bird was ready, a quick check showed me the temperature was 15 degrees lacking from the 180 degrees to completion.
The Grill Right also has a countdown/count up feature as well for up to 24 hours. Thus, if your bird needs an extra ten minutes, just set the unit to respond with an audio alert.
My grill is a three burner – she’s a beauty! Just because having a boss grill doesn’t guarantee cooking perfection. The Grill Right was the missing grilling accessory that I needed. I was using indirect heat to cook the bird with the outside temperature gauge reading over 400 degrees. However, I was impressed that I could keep the grill lid closed for nearly two hours while being able to monitor the rising temperature from inside on the couch. Now that’s what I’m talking about!
The chicken was good, albeit a messy meal as most rotisserie style birds go, but again, I didn’t have to baby-sit the grill constantly poking and prodding the meat for readiness.
My recommendation? It makes for a great gift and offers perhaps the missing step to being a grill master extraordinaire. While you might not be on HGTV or the Food Network demonstrating your skills, at the very least you can impress your friends and family with a really cool gadget over good conversion, drink and the meats of your choosing in your home. Isn’t that what great get-togethers are all about? Skip the expensive restaurants and grill out knowing that your grilling skills will be vastly improved with the Grill Out.
The Oregon Scientific AW131 Grill Right Wireless Talking BBQ/Oven Thermometer is available from the manufacturer and online retailers
MSRP: $59.99 on sale for $49.99
What I Like: The Oregon Scientific Grill Right works as advertised. The temperature probe could be off by a few degrees, but can be easily double checked with a regular thermometer. Eliminates the guesswork from grilling meats at the desired doneness.
What Needs Improvement: Increasing the food budget for red meat and pork.