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How to Make Your Own Charcoal

If you’re someone who uses the barbeque a lot then you probably agree that the lump charcoal you buy from the shops is not the most economical path to be on. If you own a high-quality barbeque from a speciality retailer such as Barbeques Galore, and don’t want it to gather dust, then check out the easy-to-follow steps below on how to make your own barbeque charcoal – and save yourself some cash.

Set the Scene

The first step to making your own lump charcoal is finding the right location to do it. Depending on what space is available in your backyard, as well as what your city or town’s regulations are in regards to outdoor fires, you might have to find an alternate location. From here, you need to decide what method you are going to use to make your charcoal – a bonfire or a couple of drums.


Choose Your Ingredients

If you’ve chosen to build a bonfire, you will need a metal drum, a flame-proof lid, and wood to burn the bonfire. You will also need to pick out some wood to turn into your lump charcoal. The best choices are usually cured woods such as oak. This type of wood is also a good choice if you are taking the two-drum approach to making charcoal. For this method, you will need two drums of different sizes, preferably 55 gallons and 30 gallons or similar so the small one fits in the big one. You will also need bricks and additional wood for fuel.

Let It Burn

If you’ve decide to use the bonfire method, pack your drum to the rim with your cured wood, secure the lid, and pile the additional wood all around it. Then light it up. Try and have this bonfire burning for at least three hours; that way, your homemade charcoal will be more thoroughly cooked through. Let the drum cool before you take a peak. This is a fairly fool-proof method for creating enough charcoal to last for a number of months.



Compact Heat

A more simple option for the backyard, using two drums to make your charcoal is often the common choice for BBQ DIYers. To start with, cut a hole in the side of your large drum, towards the bottom. This hole should be big enough to feed wood into to act as fuel. Place your bricks inside the larger drum at its base so it will become a raised level for the smaller drum to sit on – make sure you drill some holes in the bottom of your smaller drum too so maximum heat can get in. Pack your little drum tightly with your cured wood and place a lid onto it. Keep this burning for 7-8 hours, feeding your additional wood and kindling through the feeder hole of the large drum. Once burnt out and cool, your homemade charcoal will be ready to go.

If you’re someone that cooks a lot of barbeques but are struggling with the continued running costs of buying supplies such as charcoal, then making your own could be the solution you’ve been looking for.