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choice of charcoal

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
ok this is my first post on the forum....ive been smoking meats for about 5 months now....ive done ribs turkey breast, and pulled pork....i dont mean to come off as cocky but i will put my pulled pork up against anybodys....ok now off to my question..i use the bullet style brinkman smoke and grill...its been pretty good to me just the fact that it looses its heat after about 4 hours..but i read the mods you can do to it so im looking forward to that...but when it comes to charcoal, all ive been using is kingsford..and ive been reading about this cowboy charcoal...does anyone have there own preference of charcoal to use or is kingsford the best....

thanks and happy smoking
post #2 of 11
I am sure you will lots of different opinions on here, but I found some lump hardwood charcoal at my local GFS ( Gordon Food Service..Clearwater Florida).
I have to say that it lights easier,(I use a webbber chimney) and burns more consistent than any briquette.
A 20 pound bag is only $10.00!
post #3 of 11
I've used a number of different charcoals, and I find that they all work for me as long as I don't throw them in raw.
I use a chimney and get them white/red hot and add to the ECB as needed.
the first couple times I added bricks raw to a cook it spoiled the flavor to me. sort of a fuel oil taste, tough to describe but I thru the ribs away
post #4 of 11
if you can find a "Cash and Carry" they sell 40lb bags of Lazzari lump for seventeen bucks after tax. SCREAMIN' DEAL!! they had a special for 12 bucks awhile back.
post #5 of 11
not as cheap as some listed but they are 100% all natural hardwood with no fillers or chemicals........

post #6 of 11
It depends. My usual is Nature Glo lump but when I need lower temps (200* or less) I like Nature Glo briquettes. I know Cowboy lump gets a bad rap but I personally have no problems with it. Just make sure to pull all the slightly charred moulding out. biggrin.gif
post #7 of 11
I use Royal Oak or Humphreys Lump. I use Kingsford when using the dutch ovens.
post #8 of 11
Where you at Newbie? Maybe someone can point you to something that is in your area.

I think that charcoal does make a difference. First off, I will suggest that you read this link to familiarize yourself with how charcoal is made.


There would be two main different types - lump and briquettes (I know, there are others like compressed coconut shells and lord only knows what else, but these are the two that are mainstream and readily available). The main difference is that briquettes are made with a lot of different "ingredients" and then compressed under high pressure to form the little charcoal pillows. Lump is simply wood that has been charred in the absence of oxygen. This produces an almost pure carbon. If you are a purist, then you can see that Wood would be a little more desireable than a mixture of wood, minerals, sawdust, limestone, nitrates, and borax. However, don't discount those briquettes. They have certain advantages that lump doesn't. They are uniform and produce consistent burn...sometimes lump doesn't. Also, when lighting the briquettes, they don't pop and send embers everywhere. Lighting a chimney of lump in the Kansas wind will almost set your hair on fire. Briquettes will produce an ungodly amount of ash, however. If you have never used lump, when the fire is out, you will probably be amazed at how little ash there is.

I do prefer lump, but the whole hair on fire thing is a definite drawback. So, I start with a small chimney of briquettes and then add lump to that. Also, sometimes I think the smell from a chimney of briquettes is not desireable when igniting. Because of this, I will only add hot briquettes to the smoker, while I can put lump on at any time.

If you haven't found it yet, there is a website that has reviewed every lump that is out there. Here is the link.


Budget will usually dictate what I am using. I got a bunch of cheap Kingsford earlier this year, and am still working through that. If money were no consideration, it would be royal oak lump for me.
post #9 of 11
The lump you get from GFS is made but royal Oak and is very good stuff. I was just there today and was eying up some. Seems your prices are a tad cheaper than up here.

Oh, btw do you raise bulldogs?
post #10 of 11
When I had a charcoal grills I always used Royal Oak pure lump and it worked great for me. Have you stopped into Roll Call yet?? If not please do so and introduce yourself properly.
post #11 of 11
Good info by DanMG about using the chimney starter with whatever type of lump you choose. I've tried many different lump brands when I used my ECB and settled on the Publix store brand, or Royal Oak.
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