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Anyone competed in a BBQ competition? I'm wanting to try one next year

FxLynchFxLynch Posts: 433
edited August 2012 in EggHead Forum
I just realized (too late) that my small town had a first time ever BBQ contest at their yearly festival.  It's not a big competition at all, I'd be surprised if there were 10 competitors from the sound of it.  They have an amateur and expert class.  You cook brisket, pulled pork, whole chicken, and ribs.  

So I've never even considered a competition till I realized this one was literally about 3 miles from my house.  Then I started wondering how many of you have competed.  If so did you use your Egg?  How many did you use?  How did you do?

Looking for any insight before I take this on.  It will be next summer if I decided to do it.  I'd like to have two Eggs to do this, but would actually attempt it on one since I'd be doing it for fun.  

Time schedule was as follows:
Friday 7pm cooking starts
Saturday here are the turn in times:
10:15 chicken
10:45 brisket
11:15 ribs
11:45 pork butt

I'm just interesting in hearing some experiences to decide if it would be fun to do.



  • Ever since I've been using my egg, I've been thinking about a competition myself.  I looked some up and there seem to be quite a few here in MN.  I'd personally like to go to one first to check it out and size things up before I decide to enter one.
    edited August 2012

    We travel with our Eggs quite a bit, we've had a team since 2006.  With over 75 KCBS sanctioned events under our belt I will testify that this little hobby is quite addictive my friend.

    Along with the fun comes a certain amount of expenses, a slippery slope you are putting your toe on right now...LOL.


    We currently cook with 4 large BGE's, could be done with 2.  One would be quite difficult IMO.


    Practice, practice, practice.   You will make lots of mistakes in your first contest, pay attention to these and you can quickly correct them in your second attempt down the road.   Our first contest we finished 27th out of 33 teams, came back and enjoyed 2 top 5 calls and a top 10 overall the next time out with our Big Green Eggs!  At that point we were hooked!


    Have fun and save your money!





    from SANTA CLARA, CA

  • FxLynchFxLynch Posts: 433
    Thanks for the info Smitty.  I'm pretty excited, although it is a ways off in the future.  I plan to start documenting my cooks from now on, and really focusing on perfecting my cooks of each of the 4 categories.  

    I'm hoping to find a great deal on a large or medium egg to have a second one for the competition. 

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 26,678
    Very wise to document - helps you reproduce the best conditions and remember what not to do.  And you're already reading this forum - a great way to learn to cook using the BGE appliance.
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.  Love me or hate me, I am forum Marmite.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • BYS1981BYS1981 Posts: 2,530
    I recommend anyone documenting their cooks - make a moooooney pork butt, and 2 months later cant remember what you did? Oh well, let me double check meat forms. I do document and I have honed in on better results.
  • friscoagfriscoag Posts: 97
    We are doing exactly what you explained this weekend.  It's a local thing, nothing major but we are really excited.  We will be doing all the cooking on 3 larges.

    Brisket, Whole Chicken, Ribs, and Cooks Choice which we are doing Pork Butts and turning in cilantro lime pulled pork tacos.

    We plan on winning of course though ;) haha. We will have a blast for sure!
  • I've got a egging buddy that wants to do this just strictly as a hobby and for te fun of smoking all weekend. We are gonna try some overnights together and catch our small area comps next year. Maybe just 1 or 2. Interested to hear about your journey. We are talking about sauces and rubs right now. It's just for fun and shooting the breeze.


  • FxLynchFxLynch Posts: 433
    I figured there were others interested in trying this.  As mentioned by you guys, it is just for fun and the experience.  I've gotta either get another Egg, which might be my biggest obstacle due to other major upcoming expenses but who knows. I'd be happy to hear how things go for everyone who gives it a shot, win or lose.  
  • AleBrewerAleBrewer Posts: 555
    About ten years ago, when I had an offset smoker, I was asked to be in a local comp. I had no way of transporting my smoker, so I declined. The guy running it then asked me if I wanted to be a judge....I did do that, and I learned a great deal about bbq from judging that local comp for a few years. All the guys doing it seemed like they we having a great time. Have thought about getting into some local comps, but my work schedule is too unpredictable. Have fun!
  • scooter759scooter759 Posts: 257

    I've done a few of the small time ones FxLynch wants to enter ( I started doing competitions last summer). Pretty good results. Anywhere from 8 teams (cooks) up to 30 teams. Some were multiple entries and some were just ribs or butts. Highly recommend at least 2 large eggs if it's multiple entries. It's also nice to have an extra platform for cooking something to share. That's what I think is the most fun part of these competitions....OK, OK, I do like my team name being called!!!

    If you can't muster up enough cooking platforms, just pick one or two things that are your best cooks and enter those, your still gonna have a blast and get some experience. On more than one occasion I have seen a beginner take first place for a certain category (me being one of them).

    Not sure where your located, but in my experience, don't get too exotic with your sauces or glazes. Chances are in those small competitions the judges don't have too much experience or qualifications for scoring, so it's very subjective. Too spicy, which may not be much to start with, doesn't seem to fair well in MN. I've toned my sauces and rubs back a bit after living in TX for 10 yrs.

    Just my two cents. Good luck!

    @the_alchemist83 - where are you at in MN? I'm in Mankato.

    Extra Large, 2 Large, Medium, Mini Max, Weber Summit gasser, Weber Q. Mankato, MN
  • friscoagfriscoag Posts: 97
    edited August 2012

    Not sure where your located, but in my experience, don't get too exotic with your sauces or glazes. Chances are in those small competitions the judges don't have too much experience or qualifications for scoring, so it's very subjective. Too spicy, which may not be much to start with, doesn't seem to fair well in MN. I've toned my sauces and rubs back a bit after living in TX for 10 yrs.

    Just my two cents. Good luck!

    @the_alchemist83 - where are you at in MN? I'm in Mankato.

    That's what I've been thinking for our comp this weekend.  Our BBQ sauce is FANTASTIC to me, but it has habaneros in it, but the peach preserves softens the heat for sure, but I'm toning it down more for the comp.  Probably just a very little hint of spice hopefully.  We are in Texas though.
  • Yea I'd have to have multiple eggs. But I have two buddies with larges so we'd have 3 lbge's to work with.


  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 5,940
    There are several BGE competitors/teams. Dr. BBQ and Dizzy Pig are the ones I know best.

    They've won lots of prizes, so you go for it too.

    Realize that cooking to schedule w. specific presentation rules is a whole lot harder than cooking at home.

    Check out :

    Lots of posters there compete. You can pick up lots of info. Sometimes people post images of their turn-in boxes, which is a whole art in and of itself.
  • smaschsmasch Posts: 115
    Used to live in KC and cooked with a sponsor for years.  Carried a pull behind all those years.  Now living in the south, I still have a pull behind, but could not imagine life without the egg.  I bust out the pull behind for large catering, but hour after hour of feeding the beast is tiring.  The egg and a guru is the overnight set up for competition.  AND.....  keeping records did dial us right in for cooking times.  
    Owner of LBGE, Antique Komodo Green in Color. Proud Career Firefighter. Johns Creek / South Forsyth GA
  • GreenhawKGreenhawK Posts: 398
    My friends and I have competed in several competitions ourselves, but I have never used the Egg in one.  We normally use a large stick burner and a regular charcoal grill.  I would use the egg for what I use the other grill on, but the steel one is easier to move around.  The people that I see competing on eggs either have one to the side of other cookers like I would, or have several of them.  Our problem is that we have a huge party on the Friday night, and there is no way that we can have enough eggs to cook that much at one time.  

    The Friday night to me is the best part.  All of the competitions that I have been to have had bands and other entertainment on Friday and Saturday.

    5th is the highest that we have gotten.  We have pulled several 10th or better.  The competitions that we normally cook in usually have around 70 or 80 teams.
    Large BGE Decatur, AL
  • EddieK76EddieK76 Posts: 415
    What do guys document exactly? Any specific sheet or data?
  • We keep a very detailed timeline that all team members have and follow.   Down to the minute for almost a 24 hour period.   Plan the work, work the plan.



    from SANTA CLARA, CA

  • noid1037noid1037 Posts: 33
    I would love to do a competition, it seems like everyone I know where I live dont have an BGE.  I wondered if anyone in Tulsa has a BGE and would be interested in doing a comp?  Some people have heard of a BGE here but most are not aware what a BGE is. 

    BGE Large... Go get 'em! "Cant means you haven't tried."

    Tulsa, OK

  • xraypat23xraypat23 Posts: 421
    We live in New York and do 2-3 contests a year. This is my first year competing on the egg. We own a large, and we're sponsored by an egg dealer so they give us another large to cook on. 2 is tight, we bring 2 weber 26.75" kettles along with us, and sometimes a giant barrel upright smoker. We're looking to add an XL to our line up. Comps are great, but very expensive. If you're putting up all the money yourself, to do a KCBS contest, in all honesty, you're spending a $1000. People can do it cheaper, but by the time you buy the meat, the rubs, charcoal, food for yourself, alcoholic all adds up. Not to mention you gotta buy(or borrow, ez-up or canopies, tables and chairs, and have a way to get it all to the contest. 

    We have a potlifter to move our eggs, and I HIGHLY recommend it. When we travel, we take all the guts out of the eggs and wrap in towels and put in boxes to prevent damage.  Get into it, but we've been doing it for 5 years, it's very addicting! check out, another forum, dedicated to comp bbq and good q.
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