Grant Hastings Memorial
Your Favorite Stories about Grant Hastings
Grant Hasting’s cookbook is filled with his personal stories and his fond memories of growing up hunting and cooking over a live fire. The cookbook also includes the history of the company and numerous recipes from Grant and other avid Hasty-Bake cooks. You can purchase Grilling Grant’s Way: Cooking Over Coals by clicking here.
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Oct 11, 1919 - Sept 24, 2009
We regret to inform you that Hasty-Bake's founder, Grant Hastings, passed away in Tulsa, OK, on Thursday, Sept 24th, 2009. Our deepest sympathy goes out to Grant's family and friends.
In 1948, Grant Hastings, along with his partner Gus Baker, produced the first Hasty-Bake Charcoal Oven. As one of the original manufacturers of a "backyard barbecue," Grant was a pioneer within the industry. His design has withstood the test of time - allowing Hasty-Bake to remain the oldest existing barbecue grill manufacturer in the United States.
"From 1948 on, I devoted my life to Hasty-Bake. I worked hard, but, the Hasty-Bake sold itself. It was that good. I could never sell something I didn't believe in. When I sold a Hasty-Bake, I felt like I was doing somebody a favor. And I was. Anybody who has ever cooked on one is a lifetime fan. I've never found anyone who didn't like it or didn't enjoy the food that came off of it."
-Grant Hastings, Grilling Grant's Way: Cooking Over Coals Cookbook
Please feel free to leave your fond memories of Grant on this page for future generations to see.
Hasty-Bake, Tulsa, Ok
I commend the Tulsa World for the coverage of the passing of a great Tulsan and great American, Grant Hastings.
In addition to the fine accolades you extended to him, I would like to add this about his service to our country and his leadership promoting wildlife conservation. Grant was an artillery officer during World War II, serving 533 days in combat. He saw action in Africa, Italy, France, Germany and Austria. Very few soldiers did more than Grant. His recent autobiography, "Trot Thru Hell" is in the history department at the U.S. Military Academy. He fought in 10 campaigns, starting at Casa Blanca, Algiers, and ending at Salzburg, Austria. He was a soldier of legend, and deserves our sincere thanks for his heroism.
He was a renowned naturalist and wildlife conservationist best remembered as a founder of the Tulsa chapter of Ducks Unlimited. He was responsible for the first ever DU dinner in 1956. His efforts to promote saving wetlands for ducks and other wildlife were exceptional and unceasing. He recently donated his personal duck hunting shotgun to DU for auction at an event at Southern Hills Country Club on Oct 13. Proceeds will go to Ducks Unlimited.
No greater tribute can be given to any person than to thank him for his service to country and to mankind. Grant was legendary.
W.C. Tomsen, Tulsa, Ok
Printed in the Tulsa World on 9/29/09:
Grant Hastings, who invented the Hasty-Bake charcoal grill in 1948, died Thursday. He was 89.
A memorial service was held Monday at Floral Haven Funeral Home in Broken Arrow. Hastings was born in 1919 and lived most of his life in Tulsa. He graduated from Central High School and was attending the University of Oklahoma when World War II intervened and he was sent overseas with the Army.
An artillery forward observer officer who was field-promoted to the rank of major, Hastings dreamed about ribs during the war. When he had the chance to rest, he thought about Tipton's, his favorite barbecue place on North Peoria Avenue. "I vowed to one day make ribs as good as Bryant Tipton made them," Hastings wrote in his 2007 cookbook "Cooking Grant's Way: Grilling Over Coals," which he co-wrote with Tulsa World Scene Editor Mark Brown.
When he returned from the war, he drew up a design for the grill he'd been envisioning, and a welder friend built the forerunner of the famous Hasty-Bake to Hastings' specifications. "Every time a friend saw mine, he wanted one just like it," Hastings wrote. So in 1948, he and his friend Gus Baker scrounged up $400 and asked the welder to make six grills they could sell. They called them Hasty-Bakes after their two last names. Baker took a different job before they got Hasty-Bake off the ground, and the two parted business ways.
But "Hasty-Bake, I'm proud to say, helped pioneer the art of 'covered cooking,' " Hastings wrote in his book. "Without the hood, a Hasty-Bake is just another brazier."
His grills were among the most expensive units on the market with bells and whistles no one had heard of before. "I was 40 years ahead of myself," Hastings once said. "Now, those prices are coming more in line, and other grill prices are going way up."
Hasty-Bake was selected by the State Department to represent the U.S. at the Brussels World's Fair in 1958.
Hastings sold the business in 1967 but took it back seven years later to keep it from going under. By the early 1980s he was retired for good, although he maintained an advisory role in the business.
Current owner Richard Alexander bought the company in 1994. Hastings "was a Tulsa icon and a mentor to me," said Alexander, who noted that the original design has hardly changed over the years.
In his later years, Hastings continued to hunt and fish. He cooked on his 1965 Dixie Belle model Hasty-Bake, which never needed a replacement part, about four times a week until his death.
He is survived by his wife, Betty Hastings; a son, Nord Hastings; and three grandchildren.
Tulsa World, Tulsa, Ok
My earliest memories go back to the late 50's when my Dad drove to Tulsa to purchase our family's first Hasty Bake. We were a large Muskogee family who learned on the best equipment made. To this day, and going on 60, I am cooking on my all stainless steel Hasty Bake and was fortunate to be able to purchase directly from Mr. Hastings, his autographed cook book which I use to this day. Mr. Hastings was a great American who was a role model for the great American entreprenurial spirit. Thank you Mr. Hastings, Heaven has a place for you.
Dan Flick, Tulsa, Ok
Grant Hastings will go down in Oklahoma History as one of the all time finest Outdoorsmen in the state. In 1955 my Father purchased a HASTY-BAKE that I learned to cook on and have had one ever since. As a past owner of Arrowhead Yacht Club on Grand Lake where Grant was a member, he came in frequently while fishing and we had some great times, and a few fresh fish lunches. In 1978 we bought two Boomer units and started cooking ribs and steaks on our deck most weekends at the club. You could hardly get a seat in the club when we were cooking on the HASTY-BAKES. Today I still enjoy cooking on two 1980's Model Boomers that have never seen a drop of water on them. Many people who knew that Big Quiet Hero will miss him.
Jerry Ennis, Plantation, Florida
My adoptive father, Sid Lazarus, and our nanny "Rosie" cooked every meal they could back in the early 50s. Yikes! Then we had to go to college at Washington U. in St. Louis. Knowing my twin brother Richard's and my love for the Hasty Bake he bought us the littlest Hasty Bake they made. It was portable and it cooled down quick so it could be thrown in the back in short time. It cooked for the whole Beta house on the weekends. It survived another four years of medical school and and additional three and five years of residency training. It came home with me when my wife Nancy and I moved back to start practice and was kept for years and never needed repairing. We graduated to the big Hasty Bake by then, but kept the ol miniture "Hasty" around for the two of us. Our good friend Jerry Ennis took two large ones to Florida where he again spread the fame of Hasty Bake in the private golf club resort areas. I hate to tell you what the "little one" cost now but get one and you'll never regret it.
Dr. Robert Mackey, Tulsa