11 Cool, Creative and Totally Crazy Barbecue Grills

It’s summertime, which means it’s time to start burning hot dogs grilling! If you’re in the market for a new one, maybe one of these strange grills will spark your interest.

Tired of grilling your meat with boring old wood, charcoal or gas? Well then, ladies and gentlemen, start your engines. This grill runs on a 5.7-liter V-8 HEMI engine. It can cook 240 hot dogs in only three minutes—we'll let you calculate the dogs-per-gallon ratio yourselves.

This muscle car grill might not run on an engine, but it is designed to look like a classic car motor, complete with exhaust pipes for ventilation and pistons for knobs. It also has a CD/MP3 player with speakers so you can rock out while you char steaks with your own custom grill brand.

Sure, motorcycle sidecars are pretty cool, but you know what’s even cooler? A mobile barbecue that’s big enough to feed a hungry motorcycle club. It may look like it was built for a biker with a big appetite, but it's really a custom build for New York restaurant RUB, which hired OC Choppers to make the bike.

The Baby Carriage Pit is exactly what it sounds like—a barbecue built inside of a vintage metal baby carriage. We're not sure why this exists. On the upside, it’s totally portable and would be easy to move through a crowded park.

The Texas Six Shooter Grill does not actually shoot food bullets, which is a shame.  But after loading the meats in the general chamber area, the barrel serves as the chimney, so there is a pretty cool smoking-gun effect.

One of the many failed merchandise concepts George Lucas was considering prior to the launch of the Star Wars prequels was a Death Star grill. The concept art made it to the 'net, where sheet metal worker Bryan Tate discovered it and decided to to make the grill into a reality. When it was all completed, Tate sold it on eBay to a lucky Star Wars fan.

You can always tow a small cabin or a large grill behind your pickup truck, but with the Bar-B-Q Log Cabin Concession Trailer, you can do both at the same time. That’s because this 8 x 12 log cabin comes with a built-in 6’ smoker or a 4’ smoker and a 2’ grill. Now that’s convenient.

The intricate details on this one almost make it look fake, but this dragon grill is in fact more real than dragons. Its creator, Ed McBride, dubbed it “Guardian of the Beast” before he sold it off for $65,000 at the Safari Club International 33rd Annual Hunters' Convention

Not every grill also serves as a work of art, but the sculptural ‘Circle’ grill by Fire and Steel certainly does, with its circular frame supporting the ash bowl and a hanging grill. While it looks like the grill could be dangerously wobbly, two support beams work to ensure it stays in place while you cook. If nothing else, this beautiful grill is an excellent conversation starter.

This space-saving wall barbecue folds up while not in use. The plate protects the wall from smoke and the bowl is designed to catch the ashes so it won’t spill all over your wall if you fold it up without cleaning it first.

Technically, this isn’t a grill, but a grilling accessory that converts your standard kettle grill into an oven that can be used to make smoky, gourmet pizzas.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
Health
Toddlers Are Now Eating as Much Added Sugar as Adults
iStock
iStock

We know excessive amounts of added sugar can lurk in foods ranging from ketchup to juices to “health foods” like protein bars. We also know Americans get too much of it, often consuming up to 19 teaspoons daily, exceeding the American Heart Association’s recommended limit of 6 to 9 teaspoons a day. That adds up to 66 ill-advised pounds of the stuff per year.

A new study that came out of the American Society for Nutrition’s conference last week demonstrates an even more alarming trend: Toddlers are eating nearly as much sugar every day as is recommended for adults.

The study, which was organized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, examined survey data collected between 2011 and 2014 for 800 kids aged 6 to 23 months. Based on parental reporting of their food intake, the tiny subjects between 12 and 18 months old took in an average 5.5 teaspoons of added sugar per day. Older kids, aged 19 to 23 months, consumed 7.1 teaspoons. That’s at or near the recommended intake for a fully grown adult.

In addition to health risks including weight gain and reduced immune system function, sugar-slurping babies stand a greater chance of carrying that craving with them into adulthood, where complications like diabetes and heart problems can be waiting. The AHA recommends that parents avoid giving their kids sweetened drinks and snacks and look out for creative nutritional labels that disguise sugar with words like “sucrose” or “corn sweetener.”

[[h/t Quartz]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
science
Science Has a Good Explanation For Why You Can't Resist That Doughnut
iStock
iStock

Unless you’re one of those rare people who doesn’t like sweets, the lure of a glazed or powdered doughnut is often too powerful to resist. The next time you succumb to that second or third Boston cream, don’t blame it on weak willpower—blame it on your brain.

As the New Scientist reports, a Yale University study published in the journal Cell Metabolism provides new evidence that foods rich in both carbohydrates and fats fire up the brain’s reward center more than most foods. For the study, volunteers were shown pictures of carb-heavy foods (like candy), fatty foods (like cheese), and foods high in both (like doughnuts). They were then asked to bid money on the food they wanted to eat most, all while researchers measured their brain activity.

Not only were volunteers willing to pay more for doughnuts and similar foods, but foods high in carbs and fat also sparked far more activity in the striatum, the area of the brain where dopamine is released. (Chocolate is one of the foods most commonly associated with increases in dopamine, working in the same way as drugs like cocaine and amphetamines.)

Presented with these findings, researcher Dana Small theorized that the brain may have separate systems to assess fats and carbs. Modern junk foods that activate both systems at once may trigger a larger release of dopamine as a result.

This study doesn’t entirely explain why different people crave different foods, though. Much of it has to do with our habits and the foods we repeatedly gravitate towards when we want to feel happy or alleviate stress. Another study from 2015 found that certain treats associated with high levels of reward in the brain—like pizza, chocolate, chips, and cookies—were considered to be the most addictive foods (doughnuts didn’t make the top 20, though).

It's still possible to turn down foods that are bad for you, though. While many people try to improve their self-control, one of the most effective ways to avoid an undesired outcome is to remove the temptation completely. Free doughnuts in the break room? Stay far away.

[h/t New Scientist]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios