BBQ around the world: 8 popular BBQ food to try

Posted by Steven Tuckey on

Nothing says a party like delicious food, especially if a lot of it is served. If you want to make sure that your next barbecue is a success, broaden your horizons more than just Australian barbecue. Considering that there are numerous popular BBQ foods around the world, you are not lacking in options with what you can serve in your next social gathering.

Big Red Knives has curated the top eight popular barbecues around the world that you need to cook now. Check them out below.

Mexico: Barbacoa

One thing you need to include in your barbecue is the Barbacoa, a dish from Mexico where you marinate and fire roast cuts the meat, slap it inside a corn tortilla and garnish with cilantro and onions. It’s topped off with a preferred seasoning although most people tend to use a mixture of ancho chile peppers with dried guajillo, fresh herbs and citrus. Generally, the meats used here are beef, mutton, goat, and lamb although other gamier meats can be used too (or offal)

Serving Mexican Barbacoa in your BBQ is an absolute showstopper, especially if you cut slices of the meat into thin pieces using the all purpose chopper Wombat knife. Communal party food at its best!

China: Char siu

Provide a different BBQ party experience to your guests when you serve them Char siu, a specialty dish made with pork from China. Rather than the traditional way of cooking meat off the bat on a grill, you need to marinate the pork with a mixture of star anise, rice wine, soy sauce, and hoisin sauce. Then the meat is then roasted over open fire, the sugar in the marinade is caramelised, making the meat savoury, and the meat meltingly tender from the marinade. While you can eat Char siu alone, it’s best to serve rice alongside it along with crisp fresh vegetables, or other braised vegetable dishes.

Moreover, since Char siu tends to be served boneless, you can use a boning knife like the Tassie Devil knife, which will make the work easier for you!

South Africa: Braai

A good barbecue party should include delicacies like Braai, which is a barbecue style meat preparation specifically from South Africa. The meat here can be sausages, lamb, cured meat, and even chicken—all of which are cooked using charcoal and wood to ensure that the meat retains its flavour. The smoke from the charcoal and wood grill packs in the flavour of the meat as well, making it a delicious meal like no other. One thing to note though is that you can’t use a gas grill to cook Braai since food cooked only with the traditional grilling methods are considered Braai.

To cut into the meat once you’ve cooked them, the handy knife to use is the Great White Shark from Big Red Knives, which will slice the meat perfectly each time!

Philippines: Lechon

If you’re looking for something different to serve in your BBQ, then one thing you need to prepare is Lechon from the Philippines. It’s a special pork dish that takes centre stage in most celebrations or large parties. The way this dish is prepared is that you roast a whole suckling pig slowly over open fire, generally using charcoal, so the taste of the food is emphasised when you bite into it. Often stuffed with different herbs and aromatics like lemongrass, spring onion, chilli and garlic. Served with rice, salad and a sweet savoury sauce made with vinegar, soy, garlic and chillies. This is low and slow cooking at its best, using the whole animal, and sharing good times with friends outdoors. 

Make sure you have a Brolga Knife with you so you can carve the meat from the bone and enjoy it to the fullest with friends and family!

Middle East: Shawarma

Amid numerous barbecue variations, one of the most popular is Shawarma from the Middle East. It’s easily distinguishable from other dishes due to the way it’s made where spiced meat is placed on a large skewer and slowly roasted. While you can use any type of meat here, the most popular options are chicken, beef, lamb and turkey. The meat is carved from the spit and is served in pita bread or wraps alongside garnishes like tomatoes, pickles, and more. The most popular sauce to serve with this is the garlic-spiked sauce Toum.

Slicing the pieces of shawarma meat won’t be easy though if you don’t have a Big Red Knife around so make sure to have it at the ready!

Brazil: Churrasco 

Add a fun meal to your barbecues by serving a Churrasco from Brazil to your guests. It’s red meat cooked on large skewers, and once done, they’re cut off fresh from the skewer directly onto plates. Typically, the meat used here is beef but it’s up to you what kind of meat you serve as long as it’s high-quality. Traditionally it is beef rump (or picanha) with the fat cap rendering through the process leaving an irresistible smokey twang to the meat. The best sauce to accompany Churrasco is Chimmichurri a herbaceous and spicy green sauce made with chillies, oregano, oil and vinegar.

Since the cooked meat needs to be cut onto the plates quickly, a handy knife you can use is the Croc knife. It’s a knife with jagged blades, making it the perfect tool to cut through the meat with little to no effort!

Argentina: Asado

While there are numerous ways to cook food in barbecue style, Argentina’s Asado is one of the best ways to do it. All you have to do is season the meat with salt and then grill it. Make sure not to marinate the meat because the Asado way of cooking it ensures that the natural flavour of the meat is emphasised once cooked. Asado is cooked on an open fire grill known as a Parrilla, and a person cooking Asado is known as an Asador or Parrillero. Any meats can be grilled in this way, from chicken to red meat and even seafood. Meats prepared this way are served with a sauce like Salsa Criolla made with onions tomatoes and vinegar, all with vary levels of acidity which pairs well with the smoky, rich meats. 

Different types of meat can be used to cook this food but the most popular one you can use is beef, skirt steak, and sausages. To serve the meat properly to your guests, make sure you have an all purpose knife with you like the Dingo knife!

South Korea: Gui

One thing that will take your BBQ party to the next level is when you serve Gui, which is any type of grilled meat in Korea. Generally, you just have to grill the meat and serve it alongside numerous side dishes like seasoned soybean sprouts, cucumber salad, steamed eggplants, and kimchi! To have a heavenly meal, make sure that you have the Korean BBQ sauce that brings out the flavour of the meat. Like the fun spirit of the Korean culture, this preparation is made with bombastic flavours, rich in spicy, sweet, savoury and sour sauces and accompaniments. Gui is generally cooked at the table, communal style, with a charcoal or gas grill in the centre of the table. Often the grilled meats are smaller and thin slices, to make cooking quick and easy.

Take note as well that bite-sized pieces are necessary so use the handy Koala knife which is a mini chopper. It’s portable as well due to its size and allows you to make precise slices.


Every culture has a barbecue dish or style. The combination of meat and wood fire is in our collective DNA, tracing back thousands of years. There is something alluring and personal about cooking over fire, a sense history and community. Some of the best occasions happen around a BBQ, so branch and and experience the diversity BBQ has to offer, through all the cuisines of the world.

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