How to throw the perfect BBQ – when to start and how many people to serve

THE PERFECT BBQ should start at 2:00 p.m. on a 22-degree day and last four hours.

A study of 2,000 adults revealed the formula for the ultimate barbecue session, finding eight guests was the most manageable.


Sausages and hot dogs were named as the second most popular grilled foodsPhoto credit: Getty Images – Getty

The event should take place in a picturesque garden with hot dogs, steaks and beer – or Coca Cola.

Clubs and burgers are still popular main courses, but many also want to be served fish (15 percent) and kebabs (18 percent).


Music should be playing in the background, according to 47 percent, but 21 percent would rather watch sports on the TV.

Ketchup was voted the most popular condiment by 37 percent, followed by barbecue and mayonnaise (31 percent each).

And for those wanting to travel for their perfect barbecue, Heddon’s Mouth, Devon; Seaford Beach, Brighton, and Beacon Fell Country Park, Lancashire are among the top locations.

The study, commissioned by Warburtons, also found that 25 percent believe there’s no proper barbecue without a bowl of coleslaw, while 22 percent enjoy a potato salad.

The white burger bap remained a firm favorite (21 percent) when it came to preferred bread, followed by a brioche bun (13 percent).

A spokesman for the brand said: “As a nation we love BBQs and come rain or shine they represent a great British summer.

“It was interesting to hear what the nation calls the ‘perfect barbeque,’ and we’re thrilled to see the classic white burger bap still topping the charts.”

Almost a fifth (18 percent) choose to wash their meal down with apple cider, while another 18 percent choose wine – and 21 percent prefer carbonated soft drinks.

And for those with a sweet tooth, ice cream is the perfect dessert (19 percent), followed by strawberries and whipped cream (14 percent).

Almost half (45 percent) admit that a barbecue is one of their favorite scents of summer and would normally like to have one of their own twice a week.

While men are more likely to go to the BBQ (38 percent), it has been found that a quarter of them regularly burn their food.

A third prefer to be hosts – men more often than women (41 percent).

But nearly half of those surveyed would rather be a participant, women more so than their gender-matched peers (53 percent).

The average Brit will host three cookouts a year, attending four in total and picking July as the best month for one.

The study, conducted via OnePoll, also found that 28 percent are more likely to use the grill than the oven during the hotter months.

While gardens proved to be the most popular locations for hosting, a beach (42 percent), a lake (15 percent), and even a festival (7 percent) also made the list.

These findings have prompted Warburtons to team up with UK Hidden Gems to locate the top locations for scenic BBQs across the UK this summer – also including Rutland Water Park, Rutland, and Castle Ward, Northern Ireland.

Ryan Young, founder of escapism aficionados, said: “We are realizing more and more that people want to enjoy the great outdoors and have a barbecue at the same time.

“It’s great to see that research continues to support this movement.”



1. Burgers

2. Hot Dog / Sausage


4. Chicken skewers

5. Chicken drumsticks


1 beer

2. Cola

3. White Wine

4. Cider

5. Red wine


1. Coleslaw

2. Green salad

3. Potato salad

4. Fries

5. Corn on the cob


1. A white burger bap

2. A brioche bun

3. A hot dog bun

4. A whole wheat burger bap

5. A pitta


1. Ketchup

2. Barbecue Sauce

3. Mayonnaise

4. Sweet Chili Sauce

5. Mustard


1. Heddon’s Mouth, Devon

2. Seaford Beach, Brighton

3. Beacon Fell Country Park, Lancashire

4. Rutland Water Park, Rutland

5. Castle Ward, Northern Ireland