If you go to Norway during the summer, you will see advertisements like this everywhere.
The ads will look fun and exciting, so you will definitely want to Grill Party. Plus, eating out in Norway (and Scandinavia in general) is super expensive. So this is a budget-friendly option that also allows you to partake in a Norwegian summertime tradition. It’s a win-win.
If you’re a clueless American who doesn’t know how to Grill Party, you’re in luck! You can learn from my extensive knowledge and real-life experience.
Here’s how to do it. (From a clueless American, who has done this exactly one time.)
Step 1: Buy a one-use grill (engangsgrill) from the grocery store.
This will cost you about $2 USD. It’s basically just an aluminum foil shoebox with some charcoal. (Which is fine. It’s a disposable grill. You’ll throw it away in a couple of hours.) While at the grocery store, you should also buy some food to cook, unless you just really like the smell of burning cardboard and smoldering charcoal.
If you’re feeling confident about your engangsgrill skills (and you’re also feeling patient), get some hamburger patties or ribs. But if you tend to get hangry and impatient, I would highly recommend sausages and hot dogs. Maybe some mini (aka fast-cooking) sliders. Just throwing that out there.
While you’re at the store, don’t forget a lighter or a box of matches! Things like plates, napkins, silverware, and skewers will make it a real party. (Just kidding. They’re totally optional. But they will make it easier to grill/eat your food.)
Step 2: If you really want to up your game, you could buy/wear a grilldress.
I don’t fully understand what this is, but apparently it’s a special grilling outfit. They appear to be wind suits that are fluorescent, 80s-themed, and totally ridiculous. (Thus, I am 100% on board with the idea.) See this Google image search for grilldress inspiration.
Step 3: Find a beautiful park or outdoor space to set up camp.
Norway is unbelievably gorgeous, so this part shouldn’t be hard. If you’re in Oslo, Frogner Park is a popular spot for grill parties (and for naked statue parties too).
Step 4: Prepare your grilling space and get ready to light that sucker on fire.
If possible, put your engangsgrill on a sewer grate, or maybe the edge of a foot path. If you’re sitting in the middle of the grass, use the riser that comes with your grill. This step is to ensure that your grill isn’t scorching the grass underneath.
Do what these people did:
To avoid ugly burn marks in the grass like this:
Step 5: Light that sucker on fire.
There are instructions (in Norwegian) on the engagnsgrill package. So if you have the Google Translate app, you can read them for yourself. But the directions are pretty easy. First, remove the outer packaging. Then, light the corner of the starter sheet.
Now, the starter sheet should ignite the charcoal, and it should continue to burn for about 15 minutes, completely heating the charcoal.
If, for some unknown reason, your starter sheet does not ignite the charcoal, and in fact, burns out in a matter of seconds… you might have to get creative and find other things you can burn to get the grill going. Maybe chunks of the cardboard packaging. Maybe some wooden skewer sticks.
Once lit, let the charcoal heat for about 30 minutes.
You can also throw a frisbee or play hacky sack. Or go catch some Pokemon, since that’s what people do in parks these days.
Eventually, the charcoal should be covered in white-ish/gray-ish ash, and all of the briquettes should look roughly the same (to ensure even cooking). And this is when the magic happens!
Step 6: Throw your food on the tiny box that’s pretending to be a grill.
Note: if you are partying with a lot of people, two or more grills might make sense. That way you can cook more food at a time, and won’t upset anyone who might be hangry and impatient. However, the charcoal should stay hot enough to cook for up to 1.5 hours after you ignite it. So you can also just cook smaller amounts of food in waves.
Step 7: Once the food is ready, stuff it into your face.
And pretend that your food looks just as amazing as the food on all of the Grill Party advertisements. If you eat it fast enough, nobody will even know.
Nom nom nom. Forget to take pictures, because you’re too busy stuffing your face.
*IMPORTANT: Repeat steps 6 and 7 until you are satisfied, and maybe laying on your back in the grass with a full belly and feeling so content and happy that you could burst.
Step 8: Dispose of your engangsgrill in the appropriate receptacle.
Eventually, you need to get up. At this time, you should also clean up your mess. Throw your trash in the trash cans, and throw your grill in the grillboks.
Yep, disposable one-time grills are so much of a thing that many parks have special receptacles for them. That way, you don’t have to worry about accidental arson, aka setting the park’s trash can ablaze with your hot coals.
Just use the handy grillboks. Park caretakers will come by and empty it when it gets full.
That’s it! From buying the disposable engangsgrill, to setting up your grilling area, to cooking the food, and stuffing your face. Now you know how to Grill Party like a total pro.
Or… like a clueless American, who has done this exactly once.
Um hi. Are you as obsessed with Norwegian grill parties as I am?
(PS – If you happen to Grill Party in a grilldress, PLEASE send me pictures. It will make me SO HAPPY.)