How To Use The Rotisserie On A Napoleon Grill?

  • By: Brendan

I’ve had a fully loaded Napoleon gas grill for roughly six months now, but haven’t really had the time to use its rotisserie component.

However, I recently read about the myriad benefits of rotisserie grilling such as even browning, less fat and grease, and overall, a healthy approach to cooking.

How To Use The Rotisserie On A Napoleon Grill

That said, here’s how to use the rotisserie on a Napoleon grill like a pro, the best meats for rotisserie, and a few tips and tricks on making tantalizing rotisserie.

How to Install the Rotisserie on a Napoleon Grill?

  1. First things first, it’s important to install the rotisserie properly before firing up your grill. Start by wiping down all the parts of your Napoleon rotisserie kit, and then measure your food.
  2. It’s important that the food you’re adding to the rotisserie is smaller than the length of the rear burner of your Napoleon grill so that it receives the right amount of infrared heat for even cooking and browning.
  3. Check the amount of weight the rotisserie can handle, and weigh the meat to ensure it doesn’t exceed that number.
  4. After seasoning the meat, wrap and meat including solid roasts to ensure there are flappy, hanging bits.
  5. Now it’s time to assemble the rotisserie, so don’t just add your food to the rotisserie just yet, but simply slide the stop bushing onto the spit rod, and do not tighten.
  6. Then slide the first set of forks, but make sure they are facing away from the handle and stop bushing. You can add more sets of forks if you have the Napoleon commercial quality rotisserie kit, which can handle up to 25 lbs.
  7. Before beginning the cook, check to ensure that the load on the rod is balanced or else you risk burning out the motor and needless to say uneven results.

An easy way to balance your food on the spit rod is by adding the food to the rod, and then holding the rod between your palms over your kitchen counter or sink.

The load is imbalanced if the load spins to the opposite side, in which case you can adjust the balance and try again.

  1. Regardless of what you’re cooking at the rear burner, it’s recommended that you always use a drip pan, which you can place under the food you’re cooking and on the cooking or sear plates.
  2. Load the loaded rotisserie on the grill, connect the rod into the motorized slot, and turn on the motor. The spit rod should now start spinning automatically.
  3. Preheat your Napoleon grill before cooking, and switch to a high temperature initially.

How to Correctly Use the Rotisserie & Burner on Napoleon Grill? 

The average Napoleon grill rotisserie can hold between 10 lbs and 20 lbs, which is more than enough for a few whole chickens or a rib roast.

Most Napoleon rotisseries are chain-driven, therefore in most cases do not require a counterweight.

Whatever you decide to cook, load it on the grill properly first before turning on any burners especially if it’s the infrared burner at the back.

Keep the lid closed while cooking, and only open the lid to baste your food. When removing the rotisserie from the grill, wear high-heat gloves to prevent burning your hands.

With regards to the type of food you can cook on a rotisserie, the list is literally endless. Peruvian roasted chicken is an all-time favorite rotisserie dish, and cooks in about 1 hour and 30 minutes when the temperature is 175 F in the thigh.

The next succulent rotisserie item is bourbon pork roast, which takes 3.5 to 4 hours for tender, perfectly cooked meat.

Takeout-style rotisserie chicken is probably the quickest meal on the list and cooks in just under an hour at 400 F.

Tips & Tricks for Using Napoleon Grill Rotisserie

There are several tips and tricks for using your Napoleon grill rotisserie including:

1. Don’t put food too close to the burners or coals

Indirect heat is the key to rotisserie cooking, so make sure the loose bits of meat are trussed properly, and the burners under the meat are turned down.

2. Use a drip pan for more than just drippings

The drip pan is designed to catch drippings from the food cooking on the spit rod above, but you can also fill the drip pan with wine, beer, or fruit juice to impart extra flavor to your rotisserie food.

3. Make sure the spit is balanced and food is secure

If the spit rod of the rotisserie is imbalanced, your food will not cook evenly. So, it’s a good idea to place the food properly on the spit rod, and check the balance before attaching it to your Napoleon grill.

4. Keep the lid shut

The last thing you want to do is let the amazing heat out, so only open the lid when it’s time to baste the food on the rotisserie.

5. Let the meat rest

So, the meat has reached the right temperature, and you’re ready to indulge, but not so fast! Let the meat rest after cooking for at least 15 mins – 20 mins after cooking, which is enough time for the juices to flow throughout the meat, and make it tender and moist.

Precautions while Using Rotisserie

Because you’re dealing with high heat, the biggest precaution to take is wearing heat-safe gloves when handling any parts of the rotisserie.

When you remove food from the freezer to thaw, do not leave it out on the counter for too long before grilling, because doing so might cause bacteria contamination.

When you finish cooking, clean the all parts of the rotisserie thoroughly, and the grill too. Further, empty the drip pan, and wash it too.

What are the Benefits of using a Rotisserie on Napoleon Grill?

There are a plethora of benefits to using a rotisserie on a Napoleon grill, starting with ease of cooking. The only hard work is loading the rotisserie with the food and making sure it’s balanced, after which the rod turns on autopilot.

Rotisserie on Napoleon Grill

Rotisserie cooking is synonymous with healthy cooking, and this is clearly evident with all that excess fat and grease draining off the food during cooking.

Adding to this, since the food is constantly rotating on the grill and on even heat, this process caramelizes the proteins even and infuses the meat with a rich taste.

When you cook food on a rotisserie, the results are a crispy crust on the outside, while retaining all the juices on the inside.

How do you Maintain and Clean the Rotisserie on Napoleon Grill?

Cleaning the rotisserie on a Napoleon grill is similar to cleaning the grill itself. Start by removing the rotisserie from the grill, remove all the forks, and set them aside. Grab a bowl with dish soap and water, and with a soft scrubber remove all the food from the parts.

Lastly, wash each part, preferably in warm water, and set it aside to air dry.

Do You Close Grill When Using Rotisserie?

When using a rotisserie, you should close the lid for most of the cook. Open the lid only when you want to baste your food, which should ideally be every 45 minutes or so.

How do You Use a Rotisserie Counter Balance?

A counterbalance aka a counterweight is a device that’s designed to promote a more even rotation of the food placed on the grill.

Some food items such as roasts are shaped more evenly so you probably won’t have to use a counterbalance. But some food items such as whole chickens have an irregular shape, so a counterbalance proves handy in this case.

Using a counterbalance is straightforward, where you load the rotisserie spit on the notches of the Napoleon grill, and let go.

After a few seconds, the rotisserie will settle to the heaviest part of the grill, after which you can attach the counterbalance pointing straight up to balance out the weight of the meat.

What is the Best Cut of Beef for Rotisserie? 

There are several different cuts of beef that are suitable for cooking on a rotisserie such as a tenderloin roast and rolled boneless rib roast.

You can also use tender cuts if they are boned, rolled, and tied and flat pieces of beef in a rotisserie basket.

What Can You Not Make on a Rotisserie?

There are many cuts of meat that aren’t a good fit for rotisserie grilling like store-ready cuts from the round and chuck because they are tougher and lack the marbling that keeps the meat tender while cooking.

Regardless of the meat you’re cooking, it’s important to keep the rotisserie balanced to avoid uneven cooking.

Another great tip is to marinate the meat for several hours prior to cooking to keep the food moist during the rotisserie cooking process.

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