Don’t Cook With Cheap Charcoal

charcoal briquette
I started dutch oven cooking with coals from a wood fire. I admit some unease at using charcoal simply because I didn’t have any real experience with it. (I grew up with the idea that when one goes camping, one makes a wood fire and cooks with the coals.)

I admit my ignorance when it comes to charcoal. It’s black lumps that makes dutch ovens portable. At first I bought the cheap (HomeLife) brand charcoal. I’ve been using it for some months and am familiar with it. I’ve read on the ‘Net that one shouldn’t use the cheap stuff, so I decided to give name brand (Kingsford) charcoal a go. I used it for the first time today. I have a one-word summary:


This stuff lights much easier, burns hotter, burns more consistently, burns much longer… and doesn’t have the huge pieces of grit in them. I’m confident that I’ll quickly adapt to this type of charcoal, but I’m not going to go back to using the cheap charcoal given the choice.

2 thoughts on “Don’t Cook With Cheap Charcoal

  1. Pingback: Partial Success | James Reuben Knowles

  2. Mark Hansen

    When I first started dutch ovening, I thought, “C’mon, what’s the difference, really?” I’ve used off brands before, and I’ll never look back. One, I remember, lit slowly, started slow, then suddenly took off and got really hot. Heck of a way to cook!

    Mark Hansen

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