MELVILLE, NY (Aug. 19, 2014) — No one likes to see summer slip away, but at Blue Rhino (, tailgating season is one of our favorite times of the year. We love gathering at our favorite team’s parking lot or in our own backyards for fun, relaxation and fantastic barbecue.


The Blue Rhino team, which includes the Mr. Bar-B-Q® brand, shares these 10 tried and true tailgating tips to ensure a fun, safe, enjoyable and delicious tailgating season:


  1. Start with a clean grill—but before you do that, toss out your grill brush and get a new one. According to a recent Huffington Post article*, bristles can fall off old and heavily used brushes, end up in your food, and cause severe damage to your throat, stomach or intestines. When purchasing a new brush, consider a bristle-less style that has a stainless steel scrubber pad for a longer-lasting and better clean.
  2. Prepare food ahead of time.
  • Use a burger press to make perfectly formed burgers that will transport well.
  • Pre-assemble kabobs on skewers.
  • Cut vegetables and put in zipped plastic bags.
  • Season chicken wings, ribs, steaks the night before.


  1. Use separate coolers and containers to pack all your gear:
  • Grill – Clean the grill so it’s ready-to-go. If it’s a propane grill, be sure to have a fresh propane tank on hand to ensure you don’t run out of gas during the tailgate. Blue Rhino tank exchange locations are conveniently available at more than 45,000 retail locations nationwide.
  • Grill Accessories – Keep grilling accessories in a plastic tote box that’s easy to pack, carry, and wash out. Be sure to include long-handled tongs and spatulas for safety.
  • Food & Drink – Remove food from the refrigerator and pack the cooler just before leaving the house. Food should be kept at 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Pack drinks in a separate cooler to keep food from getting smashed by heavy cans and bottles.



4. Prepare the grill. Use wood smoking chips to add subtle smoked flavoring to meats, or use a cedar grilling plank to help protect against flare-ups and charring on food. One of the hot flavors this year is apple, but cherry, hickory, mesquite and pecan smoking chips are also popular.


5. To get your charcoal grill started more easily, use a chimney starter instead of lighter fluid. Within 15 minutes, you’ll be ready to grill—without the taste and smell of lighter fluid on the food. If you’re using a gas grill, be sure you have enough propane on hand.


6. Stagger grilling based on the amount of time it takes to cook each item. Start with food items that will take the longest to grill.


7. Turn food with tongs, but not too often. Browning meats gives them a delicious flavor and aroma. Don’t press, flatten or pierce the meat—flavorful juices will be lost and may cause flare-ups.


8. For an outdoor campfire touch, serve s’mores from Mr. Bar-B-Q’s S’mores Grilling Basket, which makes up to four at a time.


9. Show some extreme team spirit with a Mr. Bar-B-Q collegiate team grill cover. Put the cover back on once the grill has completely cooled down.


10. Visit for more grilling tips and exclusive recipes by Michael Steifman, owner and executive chef of Michael Stuart New York. Additional tips and recipes are available at


Tailgating Recipe from Michael Steifman: Maitake Mushroom and Manchego Stuffed Burger


  • 2 lbs. Ground Beef
  • 2 tbsp. Beef Rub
  • ½ cup Manchego Cheese
  • 3 oz. Maitake Mushrooms, stems removed
  • 1 tbsp. Shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. Garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. Vegetable Oil


  1. Heat grill to medium. Mix ground beef and beef rub in a bowl until well combined. Split beef into 8 even-sized balls.
  2. Heat a sauté pan over medium high heat and add the vegetable oil. When oil is hot, add the shallot and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Then, add the mushrooms. Sauté the mushrooms, garlic, and shallots for 3 minutes and set aside to cool.
  3. Once mushrooms have cooled to room temperature, place on a cutting board and rough chop. Now, mix with the manchego cheese.
  4. Place one of the beef balls inside the Mr. Bar-B-Q Burger Press. Using the stuffing part of the press, push down until a well is formed. Place 1 tbsp of the mushroom mixture inside the well of each burger and spread evenly.
  5. Put another of the beef balls on top and using the presser, push down to flatten into hamburger shape. Remove the burger from the press and pinch the edges to seal. Repeat process until you have 4 stuffed burgers.
  6. Brush a little oil on each side of the burgers and place into burger basket. Cook until cheese is melted.


About Blue Rhino

In 1994, Blue Rhino – named for the color of a propane flame and the endangered animal – launched America’s first branded propane tank exchange service. Today, Blue Rhino is more than propane, with a full line of products at the heart of outdoor living. This includes grills, heaters, fire pits, fireplace accessories, mosquito traps, charcoal, and more sold under brands such as Mr. Bar-B-Q®, Endless Summer®, UniFlame®, and SkeeterVac®. Blue Rhino’s leading propane exchange brand is available at more than 45,000 retail stores in 50 states and Puerto Rico and is based in Winston-Salem, N.C. Blue Rhino is a division of Ferrellgas, L.P. For more information, visit


About Mr. Bar-B-Q

Mr. Bar-B-Q®, a Blue Rhino brand, is the world’s expert in designing innovative, premier barbecue accessories and outdoor lifestyle tools. There are over 400 Mr. Bar-B-Q products, including tools and tool sets, brushes, baskets, toppers, accessories and grill covers. Unlike other products, Mr. Bar-B-Q products can be used for charcoal, gas or electric grills. Over 200 products are patented. Most Mr. Bar-B-Q products range in price from $9.99-$19.99. For more information, visit

Note to editors: To receive Mr. Bar-B-Q or Blue Rhino product samples or images, please contact Cynthia Greenwood at 847-404-8404 or [email protected].


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