I have an acquaintance who has never used a charcoal chimney. He’s not particularly a BBQ-type of person anyway, but he wanted to know how it works. So I dug out my trusty old chimney, fired it up and used it right away to try out my recently made indoor grill.

So how does it work?

Summarized, it relies on the chimney effect to light up coals on it’s own. It’s a fast, easy and clean process. The benefits are:

– Always evenly and perfectly burned through coal embers.
– Fast and easy use. It takes only about 15 mins. (charcoal) to max. 30 mins. (briquettes) to light the whole thing.
– No Fuzz. While the chimney’s at work, no fanning, blowing or poking is required.
– Safety. Minimal use of grill lighters and no liquid lighters at all.


Fill the chimney with charcoal or briquettes, whatever you prefer.





Cram some lighting material below the grid of the chimney and light it up.

Good materials are: Solid grill lighters, oil-soaked kitchen towels, crumpled up newspaper, pinecones… but NO LIGHTER FLUIDS ever!



Wait until the coals are evenly burned through and have a thin white layer of ash on them.

Be sure to place the chimney on a fireproof surface that can get dirty. If placing it on your grill instead, make sure it gets enough oxygen from below for the chimney effect to take place.



Pour the coals into your grill or smoker, done. Easy, right?