While barbecue foods are often associated with the aroma of smoke and the taste of barbecue sauce, are they really the flavours consumers want?

Barbecue and smoky-flavoured sauces polarise opinions and fail to secure high ratings whether used on foods prepared for the barbecue or for year-round products such as table sauces. The barbecue foods tested last summer, which were typically meats coated with sweet and smoky sauces, failed to please a wide audience, with the sauces described by some as too strong and artificial.

The most successful was an M&S marinade that promised a fiery taste but proved to be well balanced, and consumers liked being able to control the strength of flavour by using as little or as much as they wished.

M&S Fire Roasted Piri Piri Marinade
Part of a Grill Range created for the barbecue season, this "spicy but not too hot" marinade was versatile enough for year-round use.
Score: 39
Category average: 34

Asda Mini BBQ Pork Ribs
A good size for the kids' barbecue, but the sweet and smoky-flavoured sauce polarised opinions. More popular in the south and among younger testers. Score: 31
Category average: 31

Birds Eye Smokey BBQ Beef Quarterpounders
The burgers were thick and juicy and didn't shrink when cooked, but the flavour divided opinion among the adults, although the kids liked them.
Score: 29
Category average: 30

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