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What do you BBQ with?

I've got a gas grill that we use 3 times a week and it's great, but I really want to get into grilling at it's purest form. I want to learn how to cook over wood, charcoal or some variation of both. Any ideas what a good entry level grill would be? What does everyone use? I've got a buddy with a huge Green Egg and I'm not sure I need something that big. 


I never cook for more than 4 or so people, so I don't think I'd need anything big. Pictures and advice would be great. 

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Posted 2010-10-12T11:50:02+0000  by ThatGuy ThatGuy

We just bought a Char-Broil Commercial Series grill that I love.  I'm not a big "griller" though so I have no advice.  Good luck and I can't wait to see what other tips you receive!


~Allison @">House of Hepworths

Posted 2010-10-12T13:40:38+0000  by houseofheps

Hey, ThatGuy. Nothing tastes better than food cooked over charcoal or wood. Since you are

only cooking for up to four people, I would recommend the Weber 18.5 inch Silver Kettle Grill.

It won't cost you an arm and a leg, and it's very good quality (Weber). If you use charcoal, make sure it gets mostly gray before you start to cook. I'm not that familiar with cooking over wood. Maybe someone else out there can help you with that. Good luck and it smells great already.

Weber 18.5


There is a great buying guide on that will help you pick the grill that's perfect for you. Check it out!

Posted 2010-10-12T19:50:58+0000  by Ken_HD_CHI


Hello ThatGuy,


 I am a self proclaimed gas grill guy. I've done enough charcoal grilling to realize that I lack the forethought and patience to effectively cook with coal and wood. I know, it's me, not the grill. Some of the best food I’ve ever had came off of a charcoal grill. I tend to rush things and gas is forgiving to those of us that do.


 I have spent many years interacting with grill people on a daily basis. Most of those who use charcoal agree that the Weber kettle design is best. The performance is great and the longevity is unsurpassed. More of my customers come back to thank me for recommending Weber to them than any other product. Honda and Echo are close, but they don't make grills!


 That's why, when it came time to choose a gas grill, I don't regret choosing a Weber gas grill. At The Home Depot, we sell many fine grills from several manufacturers , but I get more positive feedback from customers who purchase the Weber products.


 Thanks for asking...  These questions always make me hungry....



Posted 2010-10-15T18:01:29+0000  by Travis_HD_ATL

Hi ThatGuy,


RicksPicks here.  I agree that the Weber makes an excellent charcoal grill, however, you also asked about using wood to cook with.   You may want to experiment with some different types of wood commonly used to BBQ.  Mesquite and Hickory are the most common but you may also want to try apple, peach and plum to name a few.  Each has its own flavor and you will navigate to that which suites your taste.  Using wood is not one of the things to do if you tend to be in a hurry.  It takes at least 45 minutes to an hour just to get your fire going to an acceptable level for cooking.


 Patience is the key here as well as being dedicated to the art of cooking with wood.  You are not just making a bonfire here, but creating a culinary cooking environment!  At first it sounds sort of cave manish,  HMMM…cook with fire ARGGG yum, make fire, Arrrrgg,  throw on meat,  AhAhAh aaaaa,  Hmmmm- eat!!  ??? Not exactly.  While the caveman may have been the first to actually use wood to cook with, modern man has refined it to a more  sophisticated level.  Instead of finding just any dried log to throw on the fire, we now use a specific selection of wood to appease out taste buds.


Your best bet will be to visit your local Home Depot and try some blocks of hickory and some mesquite and see how you like it.   Remember that the wood will burn hotter and faster than charcoal so grab your favorite beverage and a book on patience when BBQing with wood and have at it.  Be sure to follow the instructions on the bag.  It has great information for the novice.  I have also found a great web site for you that will give you some good info on different types of wood suitable for you BBQ.


I hope this gives you a little intro into using wood to BBQ.  Let me know if you have any other questions regarding your BBQ adventures.  Pictures of you BBQing are especiallty great!


This has been another of RicksPicks.

Have a great day

Posted 2010-10-19T21:02:17+0000  by Rick_HD_OC

Welcome to our community! Like Allison, I also have a dual fuel Charbroil Commercial Stainless Steel grill but use propane as the pool is too far away to run a gas line.  My best friend is a designer for Big Green Egg and I have helped cook for as many as 1200 people (5 trailer grills with 100 lbs of chicken at a time), have done grill seminars for the Home Depot, and am also a "foodie" so I will add the following to the great posts so far;


With regard to traditional charcoal grilling, the main difference between charcoals are additives and chemicals. Traditional Kingsford briquettes have "fillers" to keep the cost down, and Matchlight features fluid within the briquettes themselves, both affect the flavor of the food. And although most people are used to it, if you want to stand out as an expert, consider using lump.


True Bar B Que aficionados swear by hardwood lump. It is for this reason that Kingsford came up with their competition charcoal 2 years ago. The popularity of ceramic barrel cookers like The Big Green Egg and The Bubba Keg grill have heightened awareness of lump charcoal as it is the only  type of charcoal you can use in them. The reason? Filler and chemicals!


Here's what I suggest. Buy a bag or two of lump charcoal or the competition briquettes, you will find they burn hotter, leave less ash, and the taste of the food will shine through. Buy an electric charcoal starter. The paddle shaped device lights the charcoal effectively and it will last a very long time. You need not buy an expensive charcoal grill either. There are small portable ones that start at just $29.00 or less and the one pictured below is only $39.97


Masterbuilt 18.5 In. Masterbuilt Kettle Grill 20040210


You may be surprised to know that you can get good results with your existing grill by using a few techniques I have used for years. Try this;


Take a pork shoulder or Boston Butt and coat it with fresh ground salt and pepper. Place it fat side up in a roaster pan of water on a raised rack. Take 1 cup of presoaked applewood chips and place in an envelope of aluminum foil and poke holes in both sides of the envelope.


Place the foil to one side or the other of the raised rack and turn all burners on high. Once the water is boiling, turn off the center burner and make sure the chips are beginning to produce a little smoke. Once they are, reduce the heat on the outside burner to low-medium. Ideally maintain 180-200 degrees and leave the grill closed. It will take about 3 1/2 to 4 hours to cook, check with a meat thermometer to insure it is fully cooked.

The top fat will be golden brown. Take a fillet knife and remove it and any soft fat beneath it, then flip it over and scrape the soft fat off leaving the crisp golden brown seasoned "skin". Mince it and combine with the pork whether sliced, pulled, minced or how you like it. I serve the pork with a sweet sauce (see if Willamson Bros is available in you grocery store) as it appeals to young and old.


I will say this though......about 3 hours into it everyone will have tears running down their face because it smells so good so try this. Take a stick of butter, a beer, 3 vidalia onions sliced thick and one bratwurst per person. Simmer til the onions are clear. It will keep the tears down til the pork is done.


Enjoy and let me know how you liked the recipes,

Posted 2010-10-26T12:41:53+0000  by HD116

For wood and charcoal it's hard to beat a simple kettle style grill, such as a Weber.


I prefer wood to charcoal. The Cowboy charred wood chunks sold in the Garden department are great. You don't have to worry about all the extra stuff in charcoal and what it does to your food/body when you're burning straight wood. As for speed with wood/charcoal versus gas? How does 10 minutes, a match and a few sheets of newspaper sound? Get one of the chimney style starters found in the Garden department. Wad up 3-4 sheets of newspaper and place the crumpled balls under the chimney. Add your wood or charcoal in the top of the chimney. Light the paper through the holes in the bottom of the chimeny and wait about 10 minutes. Grab the handle, dump into your kettle, arrange the coals with your long tongs and you're ready to go. Only about 7 minutes more than a gas setup, but much better flavor [just read the post from the gas grill guy... some of the best food he's had is from a charcoal grill :smileyvery-happy: ]

Posted 2010-11-08T01:07:25+0000  by Paul

I just bought a grill, which Home depot doesn't sell yet, but I'm sure they'll get some similar to it soon. The Smoke Hollow 4-in-1 Grill does IR, gas, charcoal/wood, and Smoking (The TRUE BBQ method). It's a shame this wasn't invented sooner. I remember guys in college and I would make comments like, "man, I wish I could buy a Grill that doe gas and BBQ flame." Check it out, this is a win win win win for all methods and times of year grilling. The only downside, it's fairly wide, 77", but just the right build and fix! Haven't used it yet, but again, the build looks and felt good in the store. Only downside. The smoke box has no "seal" to keep smoke from coming out the lid/body junction.

4-in-1 second.jpg

4-in-1 second.jpg

Posted 2011-07-27T20:45:42+0000  by lbirello

Hi Ibirello,


Thank you for your question.  Yes The Home Depot does have a combination unit that uses both gas and charcoal.  It is made by Brinkman called the Dual Function Charcoal and Gas Grill.  It is 65.35 inches X 51.97 inches. 



It is great for the occasional grilling chief who likes to get out and have the option of using both gas and charcoal separately or at the same time.  It is a bit of a challenge with the smoke as you found out but smoke is all part of grilling is it not???   If there isn’t smoke from the gas side there is going to be smoke from the grilling side.  Either way it all adds to the flavor of BBQ.  Just try to be upwind when the smoke gets kind of heavy or you may not be able to see what you are grilling!  Either way I think you are going to enjoy the combination unit and will have some real fun experimenting with all the different flavors smoking will have for you between the charcoal and the wood chips or blocks.  Below are some varieties of wood chips available online and at you local Home Depot:


Wood Smokig Briquettes Special Blend Packet.jpgWood Smoking Briquettes Alder Flavor.jpg     Wood Smoking briquettes Apple.jpg 

Wood Smoking Briquettes Cherry.jpg  Wood Smoking Briquettes Hickory.jpg  Wood Smoking Briquettes Maple flavor.jpg

Wood smoking Briquettes Mesquite.jpg  Wood Smoking Briquettes Oak Flavor.jpg  Wood Smoking Briquettes Pecan Flavor.jpg

Charcoal Hickory flavor.jpgCharcoal Mesquite Flavor.jpgCharcoal Cowboy Lump Style.jpg


Have lots of summer fun with your new "TOY"!!!  Don't forget, BBQ can be done year round!!!   Just watch our for the rain!!  Have a great summer!  This has been another of,





Posted 2011-07-29T20:23:48+0000  by Rick_HD_OC
Thanks for info and grill tips it helped my decision to purchase a new grill. I like charcoal grilling but I like the convience of gas, now that I have more info about wood grilling I will definitely try wood grilling this summer.
Posted 2012-05-09T20:17:07+0000  by DrRackhouse

Hi DrRackhouse,


I am glad we could help.  Grilling can be fun and adventurous.  Are you going to be using the wood to smoke with or are you using it to heat your BBQ?  Smoking with wood and charcoal is a great way to add that special signature to your BBQ delights.  Smoking can also be done using a gas grill as well. All you need is a smoking box and you are on your way. Check with your local Home Depot Garden Center or online at for more information.  Thank you again for your reply.


Ricks Picks 

Posted 2012-05-11T16:18:08+0000  by Rick_HD_OC
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