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How to Use a Charcoal Grill

Acharcoal grill is a great option for anyone looking for an outdoor cooking experience that offers flavor and authenticity. However, using a charcoal grill can be tricky if you're not familiar with the process. In this article, we'll walk you through the basics of using a charcoal grill so you can start cooking up your favorites today!

Getting the Charcoal Ready

If you're using a charcoal grill, you'll need to start by getting the charcoal ready. This usually involves lighting the charcoal and then waiting for it to turn white, which indicates that it's hot enough to start cooking.

How to Start a Charcoal Grill

There's something about cooking with charcoal that just makes food taste better. Maybe it's the fact that it takes a little bit longer, or the smoky flavor it imparts. Whatever the reason, if you're looking for the perfect grilled meal, you'll want to learn how to start a charcoal grill.

To Use a Chimney Charcoal Starter

  • Get your grill ready by removing the cooking grate and placing the charcoal in the bottom
  • Fill the chimney starter about two-thirds of the way with charcoal (light it now or later)
  • Put the chimney starter on top of the grill and light it
  • Wait until all the coals are lit before putting on the cooking grate
  • Close the lid and wait a few minutes for the temperature to stabilize
  • Add your food and start grilling!

To Use an Electric Starter:

  • Plug in your electric starter and place it in the grill
  • Fill the starter with charcoal
  • Close the lid of the grill and wait for the coals to heat up
  • Dump out the coals from the electric starter and place them in the grill
  • Place your food on the grill and cook to your liking!

Cal Flame - G Series BBQ Built In Charcoal Grill

  • Grill like a pro with this top of the line grill.
  • Grill in any weather with the vented splash guard.
  • Keep your grill clean with the full width stainless steel drip tray on rollers.
  •  Never have to worry about bad weather again when you have this incredible grill.
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Primo Ceramic Grills - Round Charcoal Grill

  • Grill, bake, roast, or smoke any food.
  • Porcelain-enameled cooking area is easy to clean.
  • Bring the family together for a delicious home-cooked meal.
  • This is also available in Freestanding Configuration
  • Cook food evenly with no flare-ups.
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Kokomo Grills - 32” Built in Charcoal Grill

  • Control the heat with the adjustable air dampers
  • Keep your food tasting great with the adjustable charcoal tray
  • Easily clean your grill with the front charcoal clean out 
  • Grill in style with the double wall construction hood 
  • Grill like a pro and amaze your friends and family with your amazing culinary skills.
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Choose a Type of Charcoal

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Charcoal briquettes:

 The most common type of charcoal, briquettes are made by compressing sawdust and other wood-related products with a binding agent. They light easily and burn evenly, making them great for grilling.

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Lump Charcoal

 Made from charred wood that's been ground up, lump charcoal lights quickly and produces high heat. It's also the least expensive type of charcoal

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A mix of both:

 The good news is that you don't have to stick with one type of charcoal. You may combine inexpensive briquettes with hardwood charcoal to produce a smokey flavor and save money.

How to Light a Charcoal Grill

Lighting a charcoal grill is easy, but there are a few things you need to know to do it properly. Here are some tips on how to light a charcoal grill:

  • Make sure that the grill is clean and free of any debris. This will help ensure that the fire burns evenly.
  • Place the charcoal in the center of the grill.
  • Use a lighter fluid or charcoal starter to light the fire. Do not use gasoline!
  • Once the charcoal has started to burn, allow it to heat up for about 15 minutes before adding any food.
  • Be sure to keep an eye on the fire and adjust the vents as needed to control the heat.

With these tips, you'll be able to easily light a charcoal grill and get started on your cooking!

Grilling with Charcoal 

To grill effectively, you'll need a thick, condensed layer of burning coals for uniform temperatures across the cooking surface. A thin covering produces less heat for a shorter period of time.

Grilling over direct heat will sear the food's surface and produce attractive grill marks. Thick steaks may need additional time to be completely cooked. To cook thicker cuts of meat without drying them out or becoming charred, build a two-zone fire.

To prepare food over direct heat, arrange the lit coals on approximately half of the charcoal grill's hot zone. Searing the meal over the coals before transferring to the cool zone allows for slower indirect cooking.

  • Start by lighting the charcoal in your grill
  • Once the coals are hot, place them in the grill and spread them out evenly
  • Place your food on the grill and close the lid
  • Use a meat thermometer to check whether your food is cooked properly
  •  Grill for about 10 minutes, or until the food is cooked to your liking
  • Let the food rest for a few minutes before serving

How to Put Out a Charcoal Grill

If you're using a charcoal grill, you'll need to be careful when handling the hot coals. Here's how to put out a charcoal grill fire:

  • Remove the food from the grill and set it aside.
  • Cover the coals with aluminum foil or a lid, and cut off the oxygen supply by closing all the vents.
  • Let the grill sit for at least 30 minutes to allow the coals to cool down.
  • Once the coals are cool, dispose of them in a metal container or dump them in sand. 
  • Never put hot coals in a trash can, as they could start a fire.

How to Clean a Grill

It's grilling season, and that means it's time to get your grill clean and ready for action. Here's how to clean a grill, step by step:

  • Start with a cool grill. Never clean a hot or warm grill, as this can be dangerous.
  • Use a stiff wire brush to remove any food or grease buildup from the grates.
  •  If there's stubborn buildup, you can use a putty knife or other blunt object to scrape it off.
  •  Once the grates are clean, wipe them down with a damp cloth.
  • Next, clean the inside of the grill with a wire brush or putty knife.
  • Finally, wipe down the outside of the grill with a damp cloth.

We hope these tips have helpful and that you're ready to get grilling! Charcoal grills are a great way to get that authentic grilled taste. Just make sure to follow these tips and you'll be grilling like a pro in no time!