A summer is not a summer without BBQs, I personally love BBQs and host several every year (well except this year). A BBQ does not have to cost you an arm and a leg, there are many ways to save on BBQs and yet make them fun and enjoyable.

1. Bring Your Own Meat
This is probably one of the best ways to have a great bbq, just ask your guests to bring the meat. This has several benefits. First of all, it saves you money. Second, you do not have to worry about who likes what. I have friends from various backgrounds some eat beef, some only chicken, others do not eat pork, etc. By asking them to bring their own meat I am sure there will be a variety of everything for everyone.

2. Stock up on Charcoal
If you are planning on hosting BBQs than stock up on charcoal when they are on sale, there really isn’t an expiration date for Charcoal so you can keep them for next year if needed. This is if you use a charcoal grill.

3. Bring Your Own Drinks
Yumm BBQIf you provide the meat than ask your guests to bring the drinks, it’s similar to bringing their meat. Everyone may have different preferences this way you will be sure that there is something to drink for everyone.

4. Forget Paper Plates
Paper plates may seem like a good idea, and although they are easy to clean – garbage them – they are not the cheapest way to go. If you will have regular BBQs than I suggest you purchase some plastic dinnerware from a department store and keep it for years coming. This will not only save you money in the long run but will also save the environment.

5. Buy in Off Season
This can apply to many things in life; make your equipment purchases during the off season. Between November- April is a good time to purchase BBQ equipment it will save you some money.

6. Have Snacks and Ice-Cream for Kids
If you going to a park for BBQ than make sure you have some ice-cream and snacks for the kids. No matter how much you feed kids they always want ice- cream so having some with you will ensure you do not have to purchase from ice-cream trucks for triple the price.

7. Purchase Bone-In Cuts of Meat
If you’re looking for money saving ideas that let you do more with your budget, purchase bone-in cuts of meat. Bone-in meat will not only save you money but the bones help keep the meat from drying out on the grill and add additional flavor.

Tips from Twitter followers:

@debtblackhole Ask guests to bring a dish/food. It helps make the cost to each person small. Most people won’t be offended by the request!

@lecanardzero to save money you should use fattier cuts of meat slow cooked. Cheaper and will taste much better.

@FourPillars Don’t burn the burgers!

Other Resources:

Consumerism Commentary has a Podcast on Jim Wang from Grill Maestro

My Life ROI Ways to have a cheap and fun BBQ

What are your BBQ money saving tips?




Ray is an ex-financial adviser and the founder of Financial Highway. Currently working in the financial industry and working towards completing his Chartered Financial Analyst, CFA, designation.