Lump Charcoal Versus Briquettes: Comparison

Lump Charcoal Versus Briquettes is a very popular topic that is very often brought up amongst the barbeque enthusiasts. Most people have problem choosing and don’t know which is better.

In this article, we will attempt to explain the pros & cons of both types of charcoal so that you can be sure on which is the best fit for your use.

Is your charcoal of best quality?

Charcoal can be used efficiently if its quality is optimum for the particular end-use. Charcoal quality used should be such that it protects the environment as well as produces a high yielding quality of charcoal.

The quality and type of charcoal influence the speed at which it ignites, its price, its longevity and the natural content i.e. presence or absence of chemical additives.

Lump Charcoal v/s Briquettes

For those who have no time for or interest in reading the whole article, We have prepared a table which briefly summarizes all the ups and downs of both type of charcoal. If you wish to learn more about a particular pro or con, do read the full article.

Lump Charcoal

Buy hardwood lump charcoal

Lump charcoal is the traditional charcoal that you think of when you hear the word charcoal. It’s made by burning pieces of hardwood at very high heat with very little oxygen. This draws out all of the moisture and sap from the wood and leaves a charred shell of carbon. It produces more smoke which gives food (especially if used in a smoker) a great smoky flavour.

All Natural i.e. contains no additives.Uneven pieces of charcoal makes it harder to grill.
Burns hotter & lights quickly.More expensive than briquettes.
Very little ash production.Burns down with high temperature fluctuations.

Try to buy lump charcoal from manufacturers like Indian Charcoal who offer bigger chunks which will make the burning process slightly longer. This type of fuel works very well for quick grilling (like with kebabs or tikkas) where high temperature is needed.

Personally, we highly recommend it for quick grilling on a regular charcoal grill mostly because it produces very little ash. Still, if you’re planning to cook thicker slabs of meat or simply smoke the meat, then it might not be the kind of charcoal to be used.


Buy Charcoal Briquettes
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Briquettes contain other flavour enhancers and can contain bits of wood chips or other wood that might have been used during the manufacturing process. Another thing that might have been added to briquettes is lighter fluid and other chemicals, to help the briquettes burn. This can help you start your fire easier, but is likely to taint the taste of your food. The chemicals and lighter fluids won’t harm you and they’re not poisonous, but are sometimes very noticeable while eating what is cooked.

Pros Cons
It maintains a steady temperature for a longer period.Large ash production.
Cheaper than lump charcoal.Produces a chemical smell.
Burns much longer.Takes longer time to light.

Briquette is recommended when you know that you’re going to be cooking for many hours and need to maintain a fixed temperature for many hours without having to add more charcoal all the time.

Its shape and consistency allows distribution of heat evenly inside the grill.

It is great for creating different cooking zones by using direct or indirect cooking methods i.e. it is ideal for smoking food.

A plus point for briquette users is that it’s cheaper as compared to lump charcoal. So, it makes a huge difference for people who regularly cook using charcoal grills!


So in conclusion, for quick grilling, We would recommend lump charcoal, but in many cases, briquettes are better when one plans to cook meat for a longer time and to create different temperature zones. Briquette also allows to distribute the heat evenly and gives a better temperature control.

But when we’re talking about briquette, We’d like to remind to only choose the top quality briquette which you can easily order from our Indian Charcoal website. Plenty of cheap quality briquette contain different additives which can be a cause of concern unless you’re buying an additive-free one.

Indian Charcoal manufactures charcoal using the best firewood grown on the private land without damaging the forest ecosystem. Our quality control is one of the reasons why we are regarded as one of the best quality charcoal manufacturers in the industry.

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