Do you love the taste of smokey, sweet barbecue that has been grilled to juicy perfection? Have you tried barbecuing at home only to be disappointed when your meal doesn’t turn out as scrumptious as your favorite restaurant’s barbeque? If that is the case, then I have amazing news for you. You are not alone! Barbecuing is an art form that many novice cooks have difficulty perfecting. Banging out mouth-watering barbecue all comes down to the choices you make during the cooking process. What type of grill are you using? Are you cooking with charcoal or wood? Did you think to marinate the food items or not? All these decisions play a part in whether your barbecue is above average or just average.
But do not fret! Anyone can get better at a craft if they work at it. More likely than not, there is a class in your state that can help you improve upon what you already know. These classes will not only teach you what you need to kick some barbeque booty, but many of them are competitions to make learning fun. Down below is a list of classes and associations across the country that you may be interested in attending. Check them out!
A List of Classes
Slap Yo’ Daddy BBQ Classes
Harry Soo teaches a cooking class in Diamond Bar, California called Slap Yo’ Daddy BBQ Classes. It prepares students for both back yard and competition cooking. A list of opening date can be found on the website of Slap Yo’ Daddy BBQ. For those of you who do not know, Harry Soo is an award-winning BBQ champion. He appeared on TLC’s BBQ Pitmasters in 2010 and won the first season.
This class is geared for adults. So if you are younger than 18 years of age, I’m sorry. Harry’s class does fill up pretty fast. Each class has a maximum of 14 students. This allows him to give one-on-one guidance, so no one is left out. The class runs for 7:45 am to 2:30 pm. From lighting a fire to making your own rubs and sauces to even different cooking methods, you will learn everything you could possibly want to know from this cooking class.
Barbeque University is a class taught in Colorado Springs by Steven Raichlen. He is a world-famous barbecue expert and the author of the Barbecue Bible. Barbeque University is held at the five-star Broadmoor Resort. Classes for the 2019 classes will run from May 23rd thru May 26th and May 26tth thru May 29th, so register now! The theme of this year’s sessions will be Smoke and Fire. Each three-day session will only allow for 55 students and a fourth of the class will be remaining students. However, not only will you be learning from a top chef, but you will get to spend your afternoons enjoying everything else Broadmoor has to offer. This really will be a mini-vacation full of history, culture, and food. Classes do fill up rapidly. Call 855-634-7711 to make your reservations or simply visit Broadmoor’s website.
Swamp Boys Q School
Swamp Boys is a barbeque class in Winter Haven, Florida. It is open to all skill levels. This is a competition style 2-day class. So, come prepared to rumble. You will be taught all aspects of barbequing, from meat selection to FBA box building.
This class is taught by Rub Bagby. He has 14 years of barbecue experience, along with having won over 380 pro BBQ competitions himself. For more information about this class, visit swampboys.com.
Q-School is a smoker cooking class in Hoboken, Georgia. The class is taught by grandmaster chef Paul Kirk. This class is open to all levels of cook. This is a hands-on class where you will be working with the Lang BBQ Smoker. Kirk will cover everything from basics of barbecuing your favorite meats to contest presentation in this one-day class. Classes will be held in April at the Lang Kitchen.
Jack’s Old South Cooking School
Jack’s Old South Cooking School is hosted by Myron Mixon, star of BBQ Pitmasters on TLC, in Unadilla. Classes are open from April 12th thru April 14th and May 24th thru May 26th. Jack’s Old Southern Cooking School will be held at Myron’s home. The two day event will start with a meet and greet dinner, and then the actual class starts the next morning. You will be working with a ton of different meats, and your skills will be put to the test at the end when you serve your BBQ to judges.
Cancer Sucks Chicago Competition Cooking Class
The Chopping Block
Cancer Sucks Competition Cooking Class along with The Chopping Block are both classes located in Chicago. Cancer Suck is a nonprofit founded in 2006. All proceeds from the classes and any donations go to the Corliss Johnson Memorial Foundation.
The Chopping Block has been around for the better part of 20 years. They host different workshops based on interest. Their barbecue class called “How to BBQ a Griffin” is in April. In this class, you will be learning professional culinary techniques.
The Backyard BBQ Store
The Backyard BBQ Store offers a ton of different classes throughout the year in Wilmette, Illinois. On April 25th, there will be a pork butt class taught by award-winning restaurant owner of Lillies Q. Charlie McKenna. During this class, you will learn some remarkable smoking tips.
Fireplace and Chimney Authority Classes
Fireplace and Chimney Authority Classes are held in both Elmhurst and Lisle. You will be learning new skills and brushing up on some old ones in this class. All the classes will be taught by Chef Chris Marks. If you are looking learn some impressive techniques from an impressive chef, check out these classes.
Amy Mills’ Cooking Classes
If you are looking to learn from the author of numerous books and daughter of a champion, then this is the class for you. Amy Mills teaches in Murphyboro and Cape Girardeau. Her classes are on the whole hog and brisket cooking as well as the ins and outs of running a restaurant and catering business.
Smoke on Wheels BBQ 101
This BBQ 101 class comes to you. You provide the location and they do the rest. In the Smoke on Wheels course, you will learn what to look for when choosing meat along with how to trim and prepare it. You will be learning how to use all types of equipment which include gas, charcoal, wood, pellet grills. And since the class comes to you, it’s perfect for any skill level.
Kansas City Baron of BBQ School of Pit Masters
The Kansas City Baron of BBQ School is taught by Paul Kirk. For information about the large cooking classes available, contact chef Paul. You will not be disappointed in this class. Chef Paul Kirk is a renowned BBQ Champion.
Pellet Envy Competition Cooking School
The Pellet Envy Competition Cooking School is in Overland Park and taught by Ron and Sheri Grey. While this team is quite knowledgeable about pellet cooking methods, their techniques can be applied to all types of cookers. If you are looking for an edge in a competition or you are preparing for your first BBQ competition, this duo definitely has some tips and tricks up their sleeve to help you succeed.
The Midwest Barbeque Institute
The Midwest Barbecue Institute is part of the culinary center Kansas in Overland Park. This barbecue institute has some of the finest Royal BBQ champions as instructors. They have classes for all levels of cooks, even kids!
All Things Barbecue
All Things Barbecue is a barbecue and grill store that offers an array of classes from beginner friendly to the serious competitor. These classes are taught by industry champions. To see when the next class is, click here.
The Good-One BBQ Classes
The Good-One BBQ Classes is taught by Chris Marks. Chris Marks is an 8-time grand champion of the American Royal BBQ Cookoff. Chris Marks travel throughout the year, so the classes taught by him are spaced out and should be booked in advance. To see when there’s a class available, please check out The Good-One BBQ website.
North Carolina Barbecue Society Boot Camps
The North Carolina Barbecue Society offers three boot camps in 2019. Locations include Clemmons, Sugar Mountain, and Castle Hayne. These camps are intended for anyone over the age of 21. These classes focus on North Carolina cooking styles and are taught by NC pitmasters.
Cult as Reflected in Culinary Tradition with Cyndi Allison
Cyndi Allison also offers a class in North Carolina where you learn traditional culinary techniques. Cyndi can be reached at her email for further information about her class and openings.
Grilling & BBQ Boot Camp
The Culinary Institute of America offers many different cooking classes from the point of view of a culinary professional. All the classes take place on their campuses in New York, Texas, and California. The offer a two-day boot camp especially for grilling and barbecuing. This boot camp will teach you to have barbecue and grill anything you can possibly think of from meats to vegetables and side dishes to even desserts! This is a class you must check out as soon as possible. All the available dates and places can be found here.
Clark Crew BBQ Cooking School
Clark Crew BBQ Cooking School is taught by the one and only Travis Clark in Yukon, Oklahoma. Travis Clark is one of the top BBQ cooks out there. He has won KCBS Team of The Year twice and has won more than 40 grand championships. His class teaches you everything from meat selection to box building to techniques and strategies. He even offers a one-on-one session for any of you who might want extra attention.
Bob Trudnak Cooking Classes
Bob Trudnak is the guru of BBQ Guru and has won plenty of BBQ competitions. Occasionally he offers classes in Lansdale to help improve the backyard cooker’s skills by providing tips and tricks. To see when his next class is, feel free email him.
Carolina Pitmasters with Jack Waiboer
Carolina Pitmasters Barbecue Cooking School is in Mount Pleasant. This school offers lessons for novice and experienced grillers. Classes are held at the Palmetto Outdoor Kitchen Showroom on Thursdays at 6 pm.
Barbecue Live is the class for you if you know you have the stuff and want to learn how to get on shelves. Even though you will be learning cooking techniques, this class also covers tips on finding sponsors to get you where you want to be in your BBQ career. This class is taught by Mark Lambert, Malcom Reed, and Waylon Reed. Mark Lambert was the grand champion in 2009 and 2013 of Memphis in May.
Chris Marks also teaches the Premier Grilling class in Frisco and Plano Texas. So, if you thought you could not possibly attend one of Chris Marks class, think again. This class will be on May 4th. Attendees will have the opportunity to taste everything prepared in the class. Plus, they receive a 10% off coupon on Premier Grilling Products.
Barbecue Summer Camp and Camp Brisket
Barbecue Summer Camp and Camp Brisket are both hosted by Foodways Texas in the Meat Science and Technology Center of Texas A&M University. Barbecue Summer Camp is June 7th thru 9th. During that weekend, attendees will learn about unique barbecue traditions and methods. They will also get to tour Martin’s Place in Bryan Texas.
Camp Brisket is focused mainly on brisket. Attendees will learn about the anatomy and grading of the meat. They will also get to take different brisket grades smoked with different types of wood.
Seattle BBQ and Grilling School
The Seattle BBQ and Grilling School is designed for outdoor and back yard cookers. The classes will be most Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from March through October. This is a six-hour long class. A private four-hour long class option available as well. Their facility holds a maximum of 28, which allows for good student-teacher interactions. In this class, you will learn all the neat things to make you the BBQ King on your street including but not limited to deep frying a turkey without burning down your house.
BBQ Mastery is an online class taught by Ray “Dr. BBQ” Lampe from the Greenbriar Resort. Lampe used to teach hundreds of barbecue champions, but he has now turned his attention to the everyday back yard chef. In his course, you will learn how to make several of his own rubs and sauces as well as learn which type of wood brings out the best flavors in meats. With this online course, you get seven streaming videos you can access anytime plus all the classroom materials and recipes. A 30-day money-back guarantee is offered in case the course is not as wow as you would like it to be.
Barbequing is a technique that is not perfected overnight. That does not mean you cannot master it. Of course, you could always just find step-by-step recipes that tell you everything, but there is no fun it that. And if you are having barbecue, it should be fun and messy and sticky. Did this list of help you find a barbequing class in your state to attend? Let me know in the comments if you attended a session near you and how it went!
Frequently Asked Questions
After you find a class, you’ll need a few items to get started become a grill master. Of course, a grill is essential (gas, charcoal, or electric), along with a chimney starter and charcoal if you’re going that route. You’ll also want a good pair of long-handled tongs, a spatula, a wire grill brush for cleaning the grill, and an instant-read meat thermometer to tell when you’re meat is finished cooking.
We absolutely recommend taking a class to improve your grilling skills. You can learn as you go, but the class will help you understand the science behind grilling. At its most basic, becoming a good griller is all about controlling the heat and keeping your grill at the perfect temperature. Then, you’ll need to learn how to space out your foods so they cook evenly. It’s also a good idea to know what vegetables should look like when they’re finished cooking, as well as the ideal temperatures to stop cooking your meat.
A grill master is the name given to the person who operates the grill at a barbecue. It can also be used to describe someone who has mastered the skills of grilling.
This question really doesn’t have an answer: you can cook almost anything on the grill! Meats, poultry, seafood, and vegetables are the most popular grilled foods, but you can also grill fruits, pizza, lasagna in a foil packet, bread for appetizers, and salad greens. The possibilities are endless once you learn how to cook each item!
Check out the list of classes in the article above! We have some great options, no matter what state you live in. You can always check with your local butcher or natural grocery store, or ask the local culinary program. They often know about classes offered in your area.