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27 bold barbecue fusion ideas to fire up your smoker

Mix things up with trendy takes on Asian barbecue flavors, fascinating ingredients, sauces that slap and barbecue mash-ups with pizza, bento boxes, grain bowls, burgers and quesadillas. Plus, get many new recipes!

Something about the barbecue world can sometimes feel a little… by-the-book. Not that there aren’t important fundamentals for pitmasters and chefs to know, but sometimes the strict adhesion to certain styles, proteins and sauces “belonging” to one region or another feels a little outdated.

In the spirit of inclusivity and delicious diversity, today’s barbecue-centric chef is taking the classics far from home and picking up some truly on-trend flavors, presentations and mash-ups along the way. Fusion isn’t a bad thing here, in fact, you could say it’s barbecue’s next great evolution.

We found chefs and recipe developers breaking the mold for barbecue with quite a few variations on pulled pork, planked salmon, beef kebobs, plant-based protein and more. The sauces are getting amped up, too, providing a simple, low-risk way to mash up your ‘cue with fresh fruit flavors and bold aromatics from around the world. Take a look at these fusion barbecue ideas while you let your smoker heat up for the season.

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