A BBQ cook-off is a competition where BBQ teams compete against one another. The competition promoter and/or sanctioning body determines what food will be cooked. 

The Bay Area BBQ Championship has ALL 3 of the following

  • Uses "Certified BBQ Judges"
  • Teams travel and compete for cash, trophies, points, bragging rights & for some, National rankings
  • Judging for the Bay Area BBQ Championship will follow KCBS rules exactly

  • May or may not be sanctioned
  • Great for new teams, chefs, caterers, backyard enthusiasts, corporate teams, etc.
  •  A great opportunity to participate in a lower key cook-off
  • Judges are made up of certified and non-certified judges.
  • Judging for the AAA cook-off at the BABC will follow a general KCBS format

  • Pro/Am & Community Teams (team not competing in cook-off i.e. Oakland Fire) serves samples to the public
  • The public samples and votes for their favorite team
  • Teams compete for cash, trophies and recognition
  •  PC is also great for community organizations or corporations to serve BBQ related samples to the public. Attracting them to their booth so they can better raise awareness for their business or service.
  • Pro/Am Teams may choose to "cash-in" their collected tickets for $1.25 for each sample served. These teams must pay the $132 Alameda County Health Dept. fee
What is a BBQ Cook-off and How Do I Compete?

  • Grill/smoker:Teams bring their own grill/smoker. No Gas Grills!
  • Food/Supplies. Teams bring their own food and supplies. All food must be prepped ON SITE! Which is another reason teams come the day before.
  • RV, Tent, Overnight Gear: Teams arrive on Friday to begin set up. They spend the night, usually celebrating with their neighbors and preparing their food (especially brisket) throughout the night.

  • Teams turn in their categories to the Judge's Tent at assigned times.
  •  # of servings = 6; Six judges per table each get a serving. The servings are put inside one clam shell container or in the AAA contest you may serve the food in an appropriate container. For example, if a team is serving vegetarian chili for the Vegetarian category in the AAA contest, they may turn their food in with small cups or bowls.
  • Teams participating in People's Choice serve their samples to the public
  • After all the teams turn in their food, Judges determine the winners and there is a big awards ceremony where lots of cash, trophies and awards are given out.
  • Containers: Containers to turn in the food for the cook-off are provided
  • Onsite Kitchen: An onsite "Kitchen" will supplement the MANDATORY hand washing station that all teams must have in their cooking area.
  • Grey Water / Grease disposal: Proper disposal equipment is provided.
  • Donate extra food: Some teams have extra food that they donate to the event. We have volunteers that pick up your extra food which will be used to help feed volunteers, foster families and in some cases we will label the food to be served to VIPs.
  • Fire code: Each team should have a fire extinguisher, keep flames 10' away from vehicles & no flames under a tent.

Sign-up now or contact Jennifer Harper at (510)759-1271, jharper@afs4kids.org to learn more.
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