Hang your American flags proudly because Monday, May 25, is Memorial Day, the day we salute the brave men and women who died while serving our country.

While this holiday has a somber history behind it, it has become a tradition to invite over your family and close friends for an all-American cookout in your backyard. Marking the unofficial start of the summer, you are now free to wear white and hang out by the pool as often as you can — as long as you bring with you a dish to be served alongside the burgers and hot dogs for the weekend barbecues.

After this long and brutal winter, we bet you cannot wait to get that grill going and show off your culinary skills while soaking in some sun. Make your Memorial Day picnic or bbq a memorable one this year by spending more time with guests and less time running around with host/hostess duties with a little help from these tech gadgets.

Here are the seven best gadgets to pick up for your Memorial Day bbq.


Star Wars fans will love this barbecue gadget. Those growling can stomachs really put the pressure on you to get your fire going, and sometimes starting your charcoal-based grill takes some time. What you need is this lightsaber look-a-like gadget called the Looftlighter that is pretty much the perfect match. The Swedish invention sparks fire in seconds, thanks to superheated air, so you don't need lighter fluid, but you do need electricity to power the lighter. Just touch the pile of charcoal with the tip of the Looftlighter, pull it backward when sparks appear, and point for 60 seconds to fully ignite. The Looftlighter retails for about $68 on Amazon.


No longer do you have to miss out on all the conversation because you had to stay right in front of the grill to make sure your meat doesn't become overcooked. The iGrill uses Bluetooth technology to sync with your phone so you can monitor your meat's progression without you having to babysit it. Just insert the probe into the meat, letting the app know what it is you're tracking. Leave the iGrill by the side of your grill and peak at the app to see the temperature. The app will give you an alert when the meat is ready. The iGrill 2 retails for $99.99, and the iGrill mini retails for $39.99.


We all love a great barbecue, but cleaning those grill racks is such a tedious task. Thankfully, there is a robot that will do this job for you. The GrillBot is the first automatic grill-cleaning robot. All you have to do is place this gadget onto your grill after cooking, and it will clean up all that blackened mess. It has a CPU chip that controls movement and speed, and has a timer that notifies you when the job is done. The GrillBot's wire brushes come off for easy cleaning, and it works on all types of grills. GrillBot is sold in four colors for $129.95

Corn Dog Maker

Of course you will have some dogs on the grill, but you will surely please picky children at your bbq by serving up some corn dogs. Smart Planet's Corn Dog Maker allows you to bake, not fry, the popular American food, so it's healthier to snack on. Not only can you easily make the popular carnival food, but you also can make other treats like pizza sticks or fun desserts like baked Snickers bars on a stick. Prepare the batter, and place six pieces at time into the maker. Use the included recipe book for inspiration. The Corn Dog Maker retails for $24.99

Novelty Gun Condiment Dispenser

Ketchup and mustard bottles often become a mess after they go around the table a few times. This Novelty Gun Condiment Dispenser is a fun away to dress your favorite foods. The gun has two containers, so you can pour in ketchup and mustard and just press the trigger to neatly add the topping. We must warn you: this gun may cause a food fight, so just make sure you've got your bathing suits on and a hose nearby. The Condiment Gun retails for $12.99.

Somabar Automated Bartender

While you are busy over at the grilling station, you may need some extra help serving up perfectly mixed cocktails for your guests. Somabar is the cocktail gadget that becomes your bartender for the day. Perfect for parties and barbecues, Somabar mixes and serves precise cocktails in just five seconds so you don't have to measure and fumble with bottles. Download the app, connect the machine to Wi-Fi and place it outside. Fill your containers with alcohol and mixers and simply push the button to serve. The Somabar Automated Bartender retails for $429.

Solar Cooler

The world's first portable, solar-powered cooler, the Solar Cooler was rightfully one of the buzzed about gadgets at CES 2014. No longer do you have to deal with melted ice or warm beer when spending a full day outside on the beach. The Solar Cooler's silicon wafers use the sun to push electrons through a circuit that generates power, keeping the contents inside at 42 degrees F for up to 18 hours. You can also charge your electronics like a smartphone via the cooler, so you can play beach tunes without draining your battery. The Solar Cooler retails for $950.

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Photo: Jun Seita | Flickr

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