In the barbeque world, where it’s all about aroma, taste, and authenticity, lump charcoal vs briquettes is no less than Batman vs Superman.
However, we won’t be getting into the endless debate of which one is better. Instead, we’ll present an unbiased opinion about the best charcoal for grilling your desired meat according to the occasion.
You can find all kinds of fuels available in the market, such as lump charcoal, pellets, briquettes, and wood chips for smoking. If you want to be a barbeque guru, you should know which one to use with different grills, such as a pellet grill or a gas grill.
- 1 Lump Charcoal vs Briquettes
- 2 Best Lump Charcoal for Grilling
- 3 Best Charcoal Briquettes for Grilling
- 4 Conclusion
Lump Charcoal vs Briquettes
First, you should know that both lump and briquettes are a form of charcoal, which is one of the best fuels to grill your favourite meat. For simplicity, you can consider lump as a basic form of charcoal, while briquettes have some additives, such as sawdust, to keep them in perfect shape.
Why Use Lump Charcoal?
- Burns hotter and can reach up to a maximum temperature of 1,400F degrees, higher than briquettes.
- Perfect for searing; however, you need to be extra careful during slow grilling.
- Comes with a natural, wooden smell to which all barbeque lovers are addicted.
- Known for infusing perfect smoky flavour.
Drawbacks of Lump Charcoal
- Come in irregular and uneven pieces, consisting of smaller and larger chunks; you may need to break further.
- Sometimes, more large lump charcoal may not completely be carbonized, containing lignin and cellulose, which may alter the natural charcoal flavour.
- Burns more quickly, meaning you need to keep on adding more lump charcoal while grilling.
- You should be careful while breaking the large pieces as they may turn into unusable pieces and dust, responsible to reduce airflow, resulting in slow-burning.
Why Use Briquettes?
- Come in uniform, perfect size and shape, allowing you to arrange briquettes properly in the grill for even heating.
- A perfect option for more prolonged and slow cooking, such as smoking, since they can burn up to 800F to 1,000F degrees.
- Relatively inexpensive and easier to handle than lump charcoal.
Drawbacks of Briquettes
- Comes with different natural and artificial additives.
- Slow to light at first, making it difficult for beginners to burn them.
- Produces comparatively more ash than lump charcoal.
Best Lump Charcoal for Grilling
Jealous Devil All Natural Hardwood Lump Charcoal
The Jealous Devil All Natural Hardwood Lump Charcoal is one of the best lump charcoal for Kamado grill because of its large-sized lump charcoal. The re-designed waterproof bag protects the charcoal from external damage, keeping the freshness intact.
Made from South American hardwood, the Jealous Devil lump charcoal doesn’t have any unpleasant bitterness like the coal made from oak or hickory. That’s why it comes with a mild and smooth flavour without overwhelming the original meat flavour.
In addition to that, the wood is hand-picked to make and process coal manually in brick kilns. Consequently, the lump charcoal is safer and doesn’t cause any dramatic lighting, making it the best charcoal starter.
The good news is that Jealous Devil can achieve the highest temperature of 1,172F degrees, which is incredible. Moreover, the lumps don’t contain any chemicals or fillers, with a minimal amount of dust.
If you don’t know how to start a charcoal grill, don’t worry because we’ve got it covered for you. All you need is to take three to four newspaper sheets to cover the charcoal in the chimney. Next, light up the newspaper and wait for the charcoal to burn. The Jealous Devil doesn’t pop up or spark during the lighting process.
These robust lump charcoal have a relatively higher burn time than other brands available in the market. Not only that, but they produce less ash as well.
- Waterproof and dustproof bag
- Doesn’t include any chemicals or fillers
- The maximum burning temperature is 1,170F degrees
- May come with a tar smell
Rockwood All-Natural Hardwood Lump Charcoal
The Rockwood All-Natural Hardwood Lump Charcoal comprises 100 percent natural wood, comprising Oak, Maple, Hickory, and Pecan. Moreover, this lump charcoal produces mild and unnoticeable smoke.
The Rockwood lump charcoal can attain a maximum burning temperature of 900F degrees, which is excellent but less than the one we discussed earlier.
Unlike the previously discussed lump charcoal, it’s comparatively difficult to light up Rockwood lump charcoal. You may need five to six newspaper sheets to light up the charcoal in the chimney.
The good news is that this lump charcoal doesn’t pop up or spark at a lesser temperature. However, it may have minimal sparking at a higher temperature.
Although it’s difficult to burn this lump charcoal; nonetheless, it produces mild smoke and little ash residue. Moreover, it doesn’t overpower the meat’s natural flavour while incorporating a pleasant aroma and taste of different woods.
Keeping in view the eco-friendliness and sustainability, this lump charcoal is made from the left-over hardwood from timber milling. It means no trees are harvested to make this natural lump charcoal.
Similarly, the lump charcoal comes in a recyclable paper bag with soy-based inks. That’s why the bag is landfill-safe and doesn’t cause any environmental damage by producing harmful fumes when burned.
- 100 percent natural composition
- Minimal ash production
- Made from renewable resources
- Recyclable bag
- Difficult to start
Best Charcoal Briquettes for Grilling
Royal Oak Chef’s Select Premium Hardwood Charcoal Briquettes
The Royal Oak Chef’s Select Premium Hardwood Charcoal Briquettes ensure consistent, longer burning for low and high-temperature cooking. These briquettes are 100 percent natural hardwood charcoal.
As barbeque enthusiasts, we all know that more ash tends to suffocate the fire. That’s why these briquettes produce lesser ash, enhancing overall burn time.
Moreover, these briquettes are suitable to use in all kinds of smokers and grills. But most importantly, they are a perfect choice for the Kamado grill, which is the best charcoal grill.
The Royal Oak charcoal briquettes come in a large 40 pounds bag to cater for your high-volume barbeque sessions. These briquettes are made from American oak and hickory hardwood and don’t contain any artificial flavours, chemicals, or ingredients. Moreover, the vegetable starch serves as a natural binder.
The Royal Oak charcoal briquettes incorporate a bold and smoky flavour to your meals. Furthermore, they produce cleaner smoke while burning for around an hour at a temperature of around 900F degrees. Since they don’t contain any artificial ingredients, they don’t infuse an unpleasant or bitter flavour to your grilled burgers.
- Made from American Oak and Hickory hardwood
- Recommended for both low and high-temperature cooking
- Produces lesser ash
- The quick and consistent burning
- Difficult to store 40 pounds of briquettes
Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes
The Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes ensure exceptional performance because they are ready to cook in less than 15 minutes. Moreover, these briquettes guarantee 25 percent faster heating than the charcoal briquettes available in the market.
Kingsford has been manufacturing charcoal briquettes for more than 100 years, making it one of America’s number-one briquettes selling brands. That’s why their briquettes come with a new refined formula. Not only that but the design of these charcoal briquettes was patented back in 1987.
These charcoal briquettes come in two separate bags of 18 pounds each, making them a more affordable option than others. Moreover, they are smaller in size and more compact, ensuring longer and hotter burning. Similarly, these briquettes have more edges to offer quick and easy lighting.
Each charcoal briquette comes with Kingsford’s Sure Fire Grooves on both surfaces to facilitate quick and convenient lighting. These grooves allow you to maintain a consistent temperature and even burn.
However, on the downside, these briquettes produce more ash and burn more quickly than other briquettes. Nonetheless, the Kingsford briquettes infuse authentic charcoal-grilled taste in your meals.
All the ingredients are sourced in America, making it a premium charcoal product for backyard grilling. These include wood char, mineral char, and mineral carbon for heating. Additionally, the limestone provides a light-ash colour, while the starch binds all the ingredients together.
Other ingredients include borax for the press release and sodium nitrate and sawdust to speed up the ignition process.
- 15 minutes preheat time
- 25 percent faster coal lighting
- Made in the USA
- 100 percent North American ingredients
- Less burning time
- Produces more ash
After reading the above guide, you know how to use a charcoal grill with lump charcoal or briquettes. Both are natural hardwood charcoal; however, briquettes burn more consistently while the lump charcoal burns hotter.
A pro tip: While cooking on charcoal, you can combine smaller amounts of hickory or maple pellet, which are the best wood pellets for smoking meat. It adds a unique smoky flavour to your meals.