A charcoal fire is a great way to enjoy delicious food, entertain outdoors, and have cookouts with family and friends. But did you know that in addition to outdoor cooking food, charcoal can also be used as a fire pit? In our opinion, there's nothing better than sitting around a crackling fire pit with burning charcoal on a warm summer's night.
Keep reading to learn how to build a backyard fire pit and make the most of those glowing embers all summer.
Can You Use A Charcoal Grill For A Fire Pit?
Building and maintaining a wood fire pit to stay warm, camp, or cook requires burning wood, kindling, or sticks. Because of this, many people wonder if they can use charcoal in a fire instead. Although charcoal isn't the best choice when stuck in nature or when you require a lot of heat and light, it certainly is a popular choice for certain outdoor grills, especially those in your own backyard.
Bear in mind that the charcoal you use or the method it is used will depend on whether you are using it for a standard campfire or for campfire cooking.
Wood vs. Charcoal Fire Pits
Charcoal is wood that has been condensed and burned in an oxygen-free environment, while firewood is often used to create a fire-base, specifically if you are building a campfire. That said, there's no reason why charcoal can't be placed on top of firewood or perhaps even in a fire pit specifically designed to burn charcoal efficiently. It's a great way to create heat and works wonders if you plan to cook in your fire pit.
We like using charcoal in a fire pit because it's easily available (you can find it in most stores), easily lighted, maintains a high temperature, and, if used for grilling, won't overpower the food with a smokey flavor.
How To Use Charcoal In A Fire Pit
While lighting outdoor fire pits with charcoal may sound daunting, with the proper techniques and materials, it doesn't have to be difficult.
To get the most out of your fire pit, start by spreading the charcoal evenly throughout your fire pit. Next, it's time to light your coals. You can also reusing your charcoal.
While you can use lighter fluid, a long match, or various other methods, the easiest way by far is using the RocketFire Torch. Requiring absolutely no matches, kindling, or light fluid, it can light wood or charcoal in just a matter of seconds. If you're looking for the best method for grilling, cooking, or lighting your fire pit in an outdoor space, look no further than the RocketFire Torch.
Choosing the Right Charcoal
To build your charcoal fire pit, consider the following types of coal:
You can buy this charcoal from any grocery store. It's made with a mixture of small pieces of wood and other materials like seeds. The addition of chemical igniters helps it ignite faster and burn for longer.
Pressed Charcoal with Smoking Woods
Hickory, or other types of smoking woods, are incorporated into the charcoal to give it a smokey flavor when you grill.
Lump charcoal is made with pure hardwood firewood. It has been scorched and blackened so that it burns hotter. Because it is chemical-free, it gives the food a better flavor.
What are the Advantages of Using Charcoal?
Using charcoal in a fire pit comes with a few advantages. First, using a charcoal fire pit provides a long-lasting source of heat that works great for campfire cooking.
In addition, it's easily accessible, requiring only a few seconds to light. Producing fewer ashes, a charcoal fire pit requires less cleaning up too. Finally, it's the perfect place to gather around with family and friends to cook, grill, or chat the night away.
Safety Tips When Using Charcoal in Your Fire Pit
Is a fire pit safe to use if you use charcoal?
Yes, but it's important to follow proper safety precautions. Here are some of our top safety tips when lighting charcoal fire pits:
- Never leave your fire pit unattended
- Always supervise children when using a fire pit
- Check the weather forecast in advance for the possibility of any strong winds
- Don't touch any part of the fire pit that can become hot when being used. Even after extinguishing them, some parts may still retain heat.
- Keep a fire extinguisher handy or throw baking soda on the flames if you need to put out the fire quickly.
- Screen your fire pit to avoid flying embers
And there you have it! We hope you enjoy gathering around the fire pit all summer long with these handy tips. For more of our tips and tricks, check out our blog here.