Find Your Own Flavor

Photography: Johnny Fogg Prop Stylist: Dayna Seman Food Stylist: Rebecca Jurkevich
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Every grill master knows that intuition plays a big role in the art of grilling. Learning how to work with heat and how to layer in your choice of flavor profiles can, and should be, an adventure. Consider this grilling season your opportunity to flex your culinary intuition and express yourself by playing with food pairings, elevating flavor profiles and enhancing your grilling experience.

In partnership with Kingsford® Signature Flavors, we’re bringing you expert tips and tricks to take your grilling skills to the next level.

Flavor Your Fire

One way to boost layers of flavor is to incorporate flavor directly into your fire. We like to add that depth of flavor with no extra effort with Kingsford®’s new Signature Flavors line. It is infused with 100% real spices— choose from flavor boosters that come standalone (and can be added to any pre-lit charcoal) or in a pre-mixed briquet bag, or hardwood blend pellets. The flavor profiles include Garlic Onion Paprika, Basil Sage Thyme, and Cumin Chili, all of which can be used with a wide variety of proteins and vegetables to enhance your grilling experience.

Ignite your senses and experience flavor like never before with the new Kingsford® Signature Flavors charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, and hardwood blend pellets.

Aarón Sánchez

“My go to Kingsford® Signature Flavors product is the Cumin Chili charcoal briquets. The smokiness of the chili reinforces that smoky flavor you like to get from grilling and the cumin is super aromatic.

I’ve got one for every recipe…For pork chops, I’m grabbing the Cumin Chili, for grilled fish, like mahi-mahi or swordfish—I like meatier/denser fishes for grilling—I like to use the Basil Sage Thyme. The Garlic Onion Paprika is perfect for chicken thighs.”

Aarón SánchezchefaaronsanchezCheck (Chef/Restauranteur, TV Personality and Author)
Kingsford® Signature Flavors charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, and hardwood blend pellets can be used to amplify flavors of all your favorite foods.

Spice Things Up

While you have to be measured with your seasonings when cooking or baking, don’t be afraid of using a BIG pinch of salt and pepper as the base for your grilling, since most of it is going to fall off while you cook. From then on, it’s your canvas. Paint away! Spices tend to mellow out as they heat up and form a crust, so feel free to be generous.

When it comes to seasoning, your recipes can be as simple or complex as you’d like them to be, with plenty of room for creative interpretation. And, remember, flavor isn’t just about what you taste. It’s a complete sensorial experience that encompasses sights, smells, and textures. Take it to a completely different level with Kingsford® Signature Flavors charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, and hardwood blend pellets, which add the aroma of 100% spices to your fire, heightening the mouthwatering scents well before your food hits the grill.

LemonTurn Up The

Acid provides a fresh bite that cuts through the richness of barbecued meats as well. “Add citrus to your grilled vegetables, especially lime!” advises Chef Aarón Sánchez. “A squeeze of fresh citrus juice over grilled veggies really brightens them up. If you like a bit of heat, include peppers in your vegetable medleys, to give them that extra flavor and kick.”

Play With Smoke

If you’re one of those people who has their own smoker, good for you! If you aren’t, never fear. A charcoal or pellet-based grill can create a perfectly smoked meal. How much or little smoke flavor infuses into your food depends on a variety of factors, including what material you’re using, the airflow through your grill, and how long your food cooks.

To create the effect of smoking, popular types of wood—like oak, cherry, hickory, and mesquite—are used to enhance different flavors (sweet, bold, bitter, etc.). A simple way to bring about this effect is to use Kingsford® Signature Flavors charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, and hardwood blend pellets. Each of these are made with one of three types of wood that are traditionally used for smoking: hickory, oak, or mesquite wood. The bonus? Kingsford® Signature Flavors incorporates 100% real spices which, when added to your smoke allows you to more powerfully infuse your food with seasoning.

Kristen Kish

“It’s important to marinate your vegetables just as you would meat. Some vegetables work great in a concentrated brine before cooking, like summer squash (because it lacks flavor) or marinating whole heads of broccoli. I love grilling or high heat cooking [them] to develop char and caramelization. Often, you’ll need to start the vegetables on a top rack for slower cooking until they are tender, then move them to the high heat part of your grill to char.”

Kristen KishkristenlkishCheck (Chef, TV personality and Author)
Kristen Photo Credit: Natalie Engel

Have Fun With Your
Flavor Pairings!

“There are so many options and fun ways to experiment with grilling,” says Chef Kristen Kish. “I like to add a touch of sugar, maple, or honey to my marinades and sauces. It helps move the caramelization along and create a nice crust. The new Kingsford® Signature Flavors add another boost of flavor. If you can taste/smell the aromas of the wood or charcoals you already use, you can use these new products to add another fun layer.”

Garlic Onion Paprika Making shrimp skewers? Season the shrimp as you normally would. Then use Kingsford® Signature Flavors Garlic Onion Paprika charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, or hardwood blend pellets to enhance the sensory experience.

Garlic Onion Paprika

This savory combination is the perfect pairing for grilling foods like shellfish and poultry (think turkey and chicken). It allows for your proteins to take on a taste reminiscent of caramelization, turning a simple meal into one full of flavor. Make a simple paste with onion, garlic, and paprika, coat your shellfish or poultry with it and allow your food to marinate in the fridge for two to twelve hours. When you’re ready to cook, fuel your fire with this Kingsford® Signature Flavor. It will add an incredible aroma to the smoke itself. Then, add your proteins to the grill and watch them shine.

Summer Squash
Basil Sage Thyme Boost your summer vegetables with herbaceous Basil Sage Thyme Kingsford® Signature Flavors charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, or hardwood blend pellets.

Basil Sage Thyme

This herbaceous combination is a classic for lighter meats like chicken or pork as well as vegetables. Try finely chopping each herb and rubbing it onto your food to release the natural oils from the leaves. Whether you choose to make a dry rub with just the herbs or add a high-smoke-point oil like avocado or canola for a marinade effect, use Kingsford® Signature Flavors to enhance your cook.

Cumin Chili Play with sweet and smoky flavors while cooking chicken thighs. Season with a dry rub or a marinade and then intensify the grilling experience by using Kingsford® Signature Flavors Cumin Chili charcoal briquets, flavor boosters, or hardwood blend pellets.

Cumin Chili

This bold and smoky combination can make any ingredient sing but it’s especially great for meats like ribs and beef. For a powerful flavor profile, combine cumin powder and your chili powder of choice with honey to slather on your meat for a smoky caramelized finish. Kingsford® Signature Flavors has a Cumin Chili option that will intensify the effect of the spices and add a smoky effect.Tombstone

Learn more about Kingsford® Signature Flavors line here.