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Smart Home

5 reasons Google Home should be at your next BBQ

Make it work for you while you shop, prep and grill.

Chris Monroe/CNET

It's finally summer, which can only mean one thing – it's time to break out the grill. After you dust it off and give it a thorough cleaning, it's time to start planning your next backyard barbecue.

Did you know that your Google Home speaker can help you grill some tasty burgers? Here are five ways a Google Home can kick things up a notch.

Set multiple timers

The Google Home is a very proficient timer. Just say, "OK, Google, timer," to create your first timer. You can also get a little more specific by saying, "OK, Google, create a 5-minute grill timer."

From there, you can make more timers for different things. For instance, you could make a timer for letting the grill warm up, one when you plop some steaks on the grill, another for when you should flip and one more for when the steaks should come off heat.

Build a grocery list

Use a Google Home to build your grocery list for your next cookout. Just say something like, "Hey, Google, add ribs to my shopping list." You can do this for anything you want to add to your list, and you can view the list by opening Google Assistant and going to Explore > Settings > Shopping List.

If you don't have an extra long shopping list, you can also use reminders. Google rolled out location-based reminders recently. For instance, you could say, "OK, Google, remind me to pick up skewers while I'm at the grocery store," or, "Hey, Google, remind me to buy corn while I'm at Target." You'll get a push notification on your phone when you arrive at those locations.

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Watch your grill from afar

If you have a lot of preparation to do while you cook, you can let a connected meat thermometer be your eyes and ears while you step away from the grill. Google Home works with thermometers and temperature controllers like the TempoChef, FireBoard and Flame Boss.

With one of these devices connected to your Google Assistant or Google Home, you can just say, "OK, Google, talk to FireBoard and set my smoker to 225 degrees," or, "OK, Google, ask TempoChef, what is the temperature of my brisket?"

Get beer and wine pairings

If you're having a bunch of guests over, it's good to have a selection of beverages for everyone. To go the extra mile, use the Google Home to get wine and beer pairings to go with the food you're cooking.

To get beer pairings, use Food My Beer. It can tell you what food pairs well with a specific beer. Or use Wine Master or Wine Guide to see which red is best for that steak. For cocktails, use The Bartender or Tender.

Set the mood

Nothing says awkward, boring barbecue like uncomfortable silence. Break the ice with some background music. Drag out the extension cord and bring your Google Home speaker into the back yard for the evening.

Throw on some hits or classics while you grill and everyone mingles, then switch to a chill, relaxing playlist and lower the volume when it's time to eat. Best of all, you don't have to worry about wiping all that barbecue sauce on your hands first.

How to grill smarter: Consider this your guide to cooking like a pro at your next BBQ.

What kind of grill should you buy? Here's how to pick a great grill this summer.