Competition Rules & Regulations


1. Each team will consist of a chief cook and no more than five (5) assistant cooks.

2. All preparation and cooking shall be done within the confines of the team’s assigned cooking space.

3. A chief cook or assistant may NOT enter more than one team per contest.

4. The chief cook will be held responsible for the conduct of his team and guests.

5. Violations of the rules and regulations of the contest may result in disqualifications, expulsion from the grounds and/or disqualification from future participation.

6. Each contestant shall supply all his own meat, cooking ingredients, individual cooking devices (charcoal, wood, portable stoves, etc.), utensils, prep tables and electricity. Some electrical will be available with prior arrangements.

7. Fresh water points will be available on the grounds.

8. Cookers, props, trailers, motor homes, vehicles, tents or other equipment (including generators) may not exceed the boundaries of the team’s assigned cooking space.

9. All contestants must adhere to all electrical, fire and other codes (town, county, state or federal).

10. No fires or live coals are allowed on the ground. Use of cinder blocks and ash barrels is mandatory.

11. It is the responsibility of the contestant to see that the team’s assigned cooking space is kept clean and policed following the contest.


13. All equipment must be removed from the site. It is imperative that clean up be thorough. Any team’s assigned cooking space left in disarray or with loose trash, other than at trash containers, may be disqualified from future participation at KCBS events.

14. No alcoholic beverages are allowed on the grounds. Under no circumstances are alcoholic beverages to be distributed (given away or sold) to the general public by contestants and/or guests.

15. No live bands, combos, etc. will be allowed in the individual cooking areas during the event.

16. No live animals are allowed in the cooking area.

17. Quiet time is from 11:00 p.m. until 7:00 a.m. on contest nights. Use of radios or other loud noises that disturb other contestants will not be allowed during this time period.


Competition Rules

1. Barbecue is defined by KCBS as uncured meat/fowl prepared on a wood and/or charcoal fire, basted or not as the cook sees fit. (NOTE: NO GAS - this includes backyard teams)

2. All meat must start out raw. No pre-seasoned meat is allowed.

3. Meat must be inspected by the meat inspector on duty at 10:00 a.m. on Friday. Once meat has been inspected, it must not leave the contest site.

4. No cooking or preparation of any kind may begin until the following meat holding conditions are met: All meat must be on ice or refrigeration before being cooked. Holding temperature must be 40 degrees F or less. After cooking, all meat must be maintained at a temperature of 140 degrees F or above in a covered container.

5. Cleanliness of the cook, assistant cooks and contest area is required. Sanitation of work area should be implemented, i.e., with the use of a bleach/water rinse (one cap bleach per gallon of water).

6. Fires must be wood, pellets, or charcoal. No electric or gas grills permitted.

7. Propane wands are permitted as fire starter only. Electric accessories such as splits, augers or forced draft are allowed.

8. No in-ground pits may be dug and no fire may be built on the ground. Burn barrels or similar coal creating devices must be above ground.

9. If burn barrels are used to make coals they should be screened or otherwise set up NOT to send sparks and smoke on fellow cookers.

10. Each team should bring a fire extinguisher to keep near the pit ~ 5 pounds ABC minimum.

Judging Criteria

1. KCBS sanction allows for blind judging only. Entries will be submitted in an approved KCBS numbered container provided by the contest organizer, and then bere-numbered by judging officials.

2. Scoring is on a scale of 9 (BEST) to 1 (WORST) in areas of appearance, tenderness/texture and taste.

3. Taste score is doubled. The low score will be dropped, but will be used to break ties.

4. Judging times will be posted and sufficient time will be given between rounds. An entry will only be judged at the time posted by the contest organizer. The allowable “turn in” time will be five minutes before until five minutes after the posted time with no exceptions. There will be no advance calls for an item. If beef brisket is scheduled for 1:00 p.m., plan to submit it then.

5. Each contestant MUST submit at least six to eight separate and identifiable portions of meat in a container. If not enough meat is sent in, the judges will be instructed to do the best they can. This in no way will penalize the other contestants who have properly submitted their entry. Poultry entries, if not cut or portioned into at least six pieces, may be penalized.

6. Garnish is limited to leave of GREEN lettuce and/or common curly parsley. ANY other garnish type in the container will disqualify the entry.

7. NO aluminum foil is allowed in the containers.

8. No toothpicks, skewers, foreign material or stuffing are permitted.

9. To simplify the judging process, no side sauce containers will be permitted in the meat judging containers. Meats may be presented with or without sauce on it as the contestant wishes. Sauce may NOT be pooled or in the container.

10. A contestant/team may enter only one variety or type of meat in a category.