The best spicy dishes for your summer BBQ

Understanding Spices

As the sun shines brighter and the days grow longer, summer beckons us to gather outdoors and savour the rich, smoky flavours of a perfect BBQ. This year, elevate your grilling game by infusing a touch of spice into your culinary repertoire. Whether you’re hosting a casual garden gathering or a more elaborate alfresco dinner, our guide to the best spicy dishes promises to tantalize your taste buds and impress your guests.

From succulent lamb and hearty beef to tender chicken and delicate fish, we explore a variety of mouthwatering ideas that celebrate the vibrant flavours of summer. Each dish is crafted to bring out the best in these meats and seafood, combining the smoky essence of the grill with the heat of carefully selected spices. Get ready to turn up the heat and make your summer BBQ an unforgettable feast with these spicy delights.

So, fire up the coals and read on!

Lamb Kebab

Lamb BBQ Spices

Lamb is always a good bet for any summer barbeque. It is excellent when seasoned with garlic, cumin, rosemary, thyme, oregano, savory, lemon, fennel, mustard and mint.

Personally, one of our favourite recipes is Mediterranean lamb kebabs. Being very simple to make, delicious and scalable in quantity, they tick all the BBQ boxes! You will often find a lot of pre-made options on offer throughout supermarkets over the summer months with mint seasoning most common. Grab a few packs of these or, if feeling adventurous, make from scratch.

To really add a kick, try serving this with our Harissa paste spice mix – a traditional condiment and dip that’s used commonly across North Africa. Furthermore, sprinkle some of our crushed sumac berries over your salad to add a bit of zing. For the full recipe, click here.

Enjoying the lamb BBQ spices? If you are having lamb burgers, we love whisking it into some mayonnaise and adding on top. It can also be great for a marinade if using lamb chops.

Did someone say lamb chops? Marinating with Harissa paste is one option and we also highly recommend grilling a few mint-marinated lamb chops with rosemary. For this marinade, whisk together some extra virgin olive oil with garlic, balsamic vinegar and mint. Then, when it comes to grilling on the barbeque, make a few light incisions in the chop and place some of our rosemary leaves.

Using this herb is a no-brainer. It works perfectly with lamb. Just ensure you do not expose it to direct heat for too long as this will ruin the taste!

Beef BBQ Spices

Moving on, no barbeque is complete without some serious beef. More specifically, beef burgers. When we say barbeque, we think of beef burgers. Typically, you will be looking to serve these up with a bit of mayonnaise and tomato ketchup, right? But how about something a little special?

We are big fans of this particular BBC Food recipe that makes use of ginger, garlic, onion, birds-eye chillies, salt, cumin coriander, turmeric and chilli powder, all of which can be found in our online store.

In general, we recommend any of the following beef BBQ spices to spruce up your burgers: paprika, smoked paprika, ground black pepper, wild herb cooking seasalt, garlic powder, onion powder and cayenne pepper/cayenne chillies.

Of course, there is also beef steak. We found this great seasoning recipe from a spicy perspective that makes use of sea salt, brown sugar, smoked paprika, ground ancho chile pepper, dried thyme, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, ground mustard and ground cumin. It is delicious!

Speaking of delicious, we cannot move on from beef without mentioning our Caribbean Barbeque Jerk Rub.The clue is in the name. This stuff was made for barbeques and works as a fantastic marinade for your beef steaks. Just toss together a few teaspoons of this with oil, lemon zest and honey and marinate your meat for 12 – 24 hours before grilling. The results are outstanding and work even better with some paprika fries. You can check the full link right here.

Chicken BBQ Spices

Naturally, our Caribbean Barbeque Jerk Rub will also work seamlessly with chicken. Alongside beef, this is a meat you cannot grill without. For example, we love the jerk chicken recipe Annie Bell shared with us. As she mentions, you will be having a little dance as it grills!

The great thing about chicken is how versatile it is. You can do just about anything with it, creating thousands of delicious meals. So, if the Caribbean vibe does not light up this barbeque, perhaps a taste of Mexico will do the trick?

One of our favourite things to make are fajitas and we cannot think of a better addition to your chicken BBQ spices. They are fun and sociable to make as everyone gets hands-on stuffing their tortillas. Simply follow our fajita recipe here but, instead of chopping and frying your chicken breasts, keep them whole and grill up on the barbeque first, before adding to the pan with the peppers, onions and our fajita seasoning.

Another alternative spin on one of our recipes, these sticky chicken wings may go down a real treat. Simply follow the same steps but, rather than cooking in the oven, give them a go on the grill. You could also try this spice rub we found on All Recipes that makes great use of brown sugar, paprika, black pepper, salt, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper. Nothing beats the sounds and smells of a few wings simmering away on the barbeque with an ice-cold beer.

Of course, we must mention peri-peri chicken! We have got the perfect seasoning for this great barbeque recipe from The Guardian. Enjoy!

Fish BBQ Spices

Last but certainly not least: fish. This meat can be criminally underrated and often neglected at barbeques up and down the country. Do not miss out on some of the best summer dishes around!

Now, there are many different types of fish out there and not all of them will go well on the barbeque. Make sure you have your fish BBQ spices to hand. We are fans of tuna, halibut, salmon and snapper. If you are feeling adventurous, why not try some octopus?

Of course, it goes without saying, you must throw in a few prawns! We checked out BBC Food’s fiery prawn & pepper skewers and we have to say, they are a hit. For this one you will need some garlic, peppers (obviously), chillies, parsley and smoked paprika.

Alternatively, have a look at their smoky chermoula salmon. Known as a fish’s best friend, Chermoula is used throughout Tunisia, Morocco, Libya and Algeria to rub or marinade freshly caught fish. Throughout Tunisia, it is used during Eid al-Fitr on salted cured fish to mark the end of Ramadan. We like this recipe because it is easy, fuss-free barbeque cooking. You can prepare it the night before, and then place at the back of the grill with practically no further attention needed. It also looks impressive if you serve it as a whole piece of fish – guaranteed to get a few ‘wow’ and ‘mmm’ moments from the guests.

Octopus still on your mind? We love how simple this YouTube step-by-step recipe is. Simply marinate the tentacles with some lemon, olive oil and oregano, then grill away. That is often the beauty of barbeque cooking – keep it simple! And do not worry, if you have never sliced and diced an octopus, just kindly ask your fishmonger to do it for you.

So, there is a round-up of some of the best spicy dishes for your summer BBQ! We hope this has inspired you to get out there in the sun and start cooking. We have plenty of spices, herbs, spice rubs and mixes on offer on our website as well as a load of other recipes for you to check out. Let us know if you end up using any!

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