Everything you need to know about Outdoor Grilling

I really enjoy the smell of a charcoal grill getting cranked up for a round of cooking. Especially when it’s mine.

The key to successful grilling is choosing the correct charcoal. I use only KINGSFORD. It lights faster and burns longer. Sounds like a commercial, but it is true. The cheaper ones burn out too fast, requiring more of them. No bargain there.

Don’t use too much lighter fluid. If you mound your coals and aim the fluid at the bottom of the mound, it will require a whole lot less fluid.

Gage the amount of charcoal needed by sizing up the cooking area needed. Pour the coals in the bottom of the grill, and spread them out into a single layer so they cover the necessary cooking area. Then put them in the mound, soak, wait and light.

When the coals begin to ash, spread them out a little. When they are all ashed over, spread them out into a single layer. Close the lid. Adjust the damper and chimney (if equipped), so that the inside of the grill can heat up and the grates get good and hot. 400 degrees and above is good to begin cooking large quantities of food. B ut stand by, because at this temperature, the food will need flipping often. Sear steaks for 2-4 minutes on either side , then flip them every 2 minutes. A steak will be well done at 400 degrees in 10-12 minutes. So don’t set it and forget it. Ribs need to be cooked slower, so you’ll want a little more coals, and will have to wait for temp to begin to drop below 400 degrees. Flip them often as well, so they don’t burn. Slather them with a good grilling sauce like Everglades Moppin’ Sauce. The best for any kind of pork or ribs. Good for marinade as well. Also try Everglades Seasonings,aka Monkey Dust, and Cactus Dust. They have a killer Fish and Fowl Seasoning, that is fantastic for chicken and fish of all kinds.

Whatever type of charcoal grill you have, enjoy it. But be safe. Don’t attempt to dispose of spent coals for at least 24 hours. they can smolder and still be hot for several hours. Don’t douse them in your grill with water-this will help to rapidly rust out your fire pan and the bottom of the grill. The quick cooling of the metal weakens it, allowing it to get thin each time you use it.

Always follow all instructions on charcoal, grills, lighter fluids, lighters, etc. Use your head. Don’t attempt to cook indoors with charcoal. Don’t move the grill to the garage and close the door when it starts to rain-the smoke can kill you and everyone in your house.


1. Outdoor Grilling Tips – How Long Do You Grill? – Esquire
2. Barbecue 101: Everything You Need to Know to BBQ Like a Pro