Some people will tell you that lifting the lid to peek at your ribs, beef brisket, or other slow-cooking barbecue will add 15 minutes to your cook time. But according to a barbecue and grilling expert, that’s not the way it works. Meathead Goldwyn, author of Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling, says an associate (Greg Blonder of Boston University) ran grilling tests and found that while opening the grill will cool the air in the grill, the meat actually stays hot. When you open the lid of your grill, the surface of the your meat and the inside of the meat will retain most of its heat just fine. So feel free to open the lid and baste the meat, move it around or rotate it, or check the meat’s internal temperature with a thermometer. A minute here or there is just fine and won’t add cook time to your meat.

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