Just because you live in an apartment and have limited space, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy cooking out with friends with a balcony barbecue.
Following are some ideas are on maximizing your space while enjoying a great barbequed dinner or lunch.
Step 1 – Make Sure It’s Allowed
Most apartment buildings have their own set of rules and guidelines about these kinds of things, so make sure you ask before you start inviting all your friends and family members over for some great tasting dogs on the grill. These guidelines usually meet some type of safety standard for you and your neighbors, so please abide by what the property managers tell you.
Step 2 – Safety First
Being that you’re in a limited amount of space, you want to consider the safety of you and your surroundings. The flames on charcoal grills are harder to control and gas grills burn at a hotter temperature. Try to keep flammable items away from the flames. This would include any type of outdoor furniture as well as plants and small pets. You will also need to consider whether your balcony is made of wood, cement or metal. Investing in a small fire extinguisher is a good idea as well. Remember, “Safety First!”
Step 3 – Designate an Area Away From The Entrance
If you’re having guests over, you don’t want to keep moving out of the way as they enter and exit the balcony. This also keeps the smoke that may enter your house to a minimum. Also, be considerate of neighbors that may live above or next to you. A small box fan usually can help with the direction of the smoke.
Step 4 – Gas Grills Are Easy
Gas grills cook faster and produce less smoke. They also come in a variety of sizes to accommodate the size you’ve picked out for your grilling area. Consider the clean up as well. Imagine you live on the third floor, and you have to clean your charcoal grill. You have to get rid of the old coals somehow, and I doubt you’re going to toss them over the balcony. If you elect to get a charcoal grill, make sure you put the coals out with some water just to make sure you don’t get any flair ups during your meal.
Step 5 – Keep a Small Table Around
If indeed you need a smaller grill for your cookouts, a small table or cart is ideal for holding your cooked and uncooked foods. For safety reasons, it’s always a good idea to keep a small table at hand so you can keep an eye on the food and the grill itself.
Step 6 – Consider a Grilling Storage Bin
A large Tupperware storage bin is ideal for keeping unused charcoal, lighter fluid, matches, grilling utensils, extra propane tanks for smaller gas grills and an array of other grilling items neat and convenient. After grilling and clean up, the bin can be put away in a closet for the next time you’re ready to grill.