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Thread: Weber briquettes vs. Kingsford

  1. #1
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    Weber briquettes vs. Kingsford

    Happy Easter to everyone on the forum! I know that this is “sac-relig” but I think its important to know. When I started smoking in summer 2017, I was pretty set on using Kingsford as most everyone says there the most consistent and they probably are. I found something however that really surprised & shocked me at the same time. After 2 cooks and putting the residual ash in my brand new galvanized metal bucket, I went to dump them and noticed something weird in the bottom of the can. Originally, I thought it might be caked ash. As I cleaned up the bucket i found that the fresh galvanizing was gone. Eaten away from the metal. There was also an exhorbitant amount of ash as well. After seeing the damaged can, I surmized that there had to be to many impurities, and probably chemicals used in the making of the briquettes. I DON’T WANT TO EAT THAT!! And, I don’t think anyone else does either.

    So, enter Weber briquettes. I have a formula that I would like to share and hope you can appreciate what I’m trying to do. So here it is: When doing the minion method use a layer of Weber 100% Natural briquettes. Just enough to cover the bottom. Fill the rest of the way with Cowboy brand, all natural, Southern style (pure oak & hickory) lump hardwood charcoal, leaving your “donut hole” for a small chimney load of Weber briquettes to get the party started. I have found that not only my food tastes AMAZING, but there is a fraction of the ash, and I know that I am not putting weird chemicals and non wood based “stuff” into my cooking. The Weber briquettes burn amazing long and steady. I can easily get 15 to 18 hours on a full load in my 18.5” WSM. Oh, and 1 other huge benefit: when you add your favorite smoke wood to the mix, I find that within an hour, the smoke I’m generating is thin, clean, mild and actually blue! I know its hard to get away from “Big Blue” but it is worth trying. You can get both items at your local Lowes and the price on Weber briquettes has come down to an everyday low price of $11.99 per 20# bag. The Cowboy Charcoal is pretty cheap as well and lasts a bag lasts a very long time. Feel confident that using these brands and methods, you are giving your family the pure wood fire and amazing results that they deserve. God bless and Happy Resurrection Day & Easter!!
    Last edited by D. Dix; 03-31-2018 at 10:16 PM. Reason: Spelling correction
    2017 WSM 18.5" 2008 SUMMIT S450 1980'S SMOKEY JOE 1992 BLACK GENESIS 2009 WEBER "Q" 80'S-90'S WEBER GRILL N' GO

  2. #2
    TVWBB Hall of Fame timothy's Avatar
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    Yea, ash from any unnatural briq like KBB or another can be corrosive when mixed in a slurry.
    I wouldn't use it in my garden or compost pile but for the price I would still grill with it and occasionally have smoked with it.
    I'm surprised you like Crap boy ( Cowboy ) Every time I used that it was nothing more than kindling with alot of plywood chunks.

    Tim
    Different smokes for different folks. Wish the Dollar Store sold gas!

  3. #3
    TVWBB 1-Star Olympian Bob Correll's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timothy View Post
    Yea, ash from any unnatural briq like KBB or another can be corrosive when mixed in a slurry.
    I wouldn't use it in my garden or compost pile but for the price I would still grill with it and occasionally have smoked with it.
    I'm surprised you like Crap boy ( Cowboy ) Every time I used that it was nothing more than kindling with alot of plywood chunks.

    Tim
    Lye can be made from pure wood ash, so I think lump charcoal ash would be corrosive too.
    I agree about Cowboy lump. there's much better stuff out there.

  4. #4
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    When kingsford changed long ago I noticed a huge change. All negative. Have not used it since. Might need to find something better than cowboy. It is near the bottom of the list. But then again, if yer happy with it, go for it.

  5. #5
    New Member Stevie Jay's Avatar
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    I like Stubbs and Weber briqs
    Weber 18.5 WSM, blue performer, Broil King Sovereign 90

  6. #6
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    All,
    I figured I would get some blow back here, however, I think we might be missing the point. I didn’t hear anyone say they have used Cowboy “Southern Style”. Just doggin’ on the brand. And that’s ok. It seems to be harder to find. I’ve looked. Only seen it at Lowes. And the Weber briqs have come way down in price to a respectible level of $11.99 for a 20lb bag. Thats $.5995 per lb. Plus, considering the amount of left over ash KBB creates, (i estimate 10-20% by weight) its not that good of a deal, ($.54lb/$19.99 last check for 2/18.6lb bags) The math just doesn’t work, at least for me anyway.

    Lastly, lye is not created by just burning wood. There is a chemical process that takes place when mixed with other ingredients, including water. Which is where KBB gets the thumbs DOWN! Again, I’m not going to eat that, but that is me. I truly respect your thoughts & comments. I know its hard to go against the grain, but please try this method first and see if you agree. It’s been the most consistent and cleanest cooks I have had. Blessings!
    2017 WSM 18.5" 2008 SUMMIT S450 1980'S SMOKEY JOE 1992 BLACK GENESIS 2009 WEBER "Q" 80'S-90'S WEBER GRILL N' GO

  7. #7
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Not trying to dog you or your method. I'm a "live and let live" guy that believes you should do whatever makes you happy when it comes to selecting your cooker, your fuel, your meat, seasonings, cooking method, etc. If you like your Cowboy Southern Style + Weber charcoal mix, more power to you!

    I do have a few comments:

    1. You're in the right range when it comes to Kingsford ash percentage by weight. However, in my 2017 burn test, Weber briquettes produced the same percentage of ash by weight as 2017 Kingsford Original briquettes--both 18.6%--but Weber produced more ash by volume (6 cups vs. 5 cups). Mixing a low-ash lump charcoal with either Kingsford or Weber will reduce overall ash.
    2. My burn test supports your view that Weber charcoal seems to burn longer than Original Kingsford.
    3. Most Kingsford users on this forum buy in large quantities at Lowes and Home Depot during the Memorial Day/July 4/Labor Day holidays when the price drops to 26.6˘/lb for 2/18.6lb bags. Some literally buy it by the pallet, it's that inexpensive.
    4. The ingredients in Kingsford charcoal have been well publicized over the years. People use terms like "impurities" or "chemicals" when talking about Kingsford, but it's three types of carbon (mostly wood char), sawdust, limestone, starch, and a tiny bit of borax to help the briquets release from the press. Reformulations in recent years have increased the amount of wood char and decreased the amounts of other ingredients, further reducing ash production.
    5. I believe you when you say that Kingsford ashes did something to the inside of your galvanized can, but I've not had that experience myself. I've stored Kingsford ashes in a galvanized can for long periods of time and seen no effect whatsoever. Did your ashes get wet? Because back to the possibility of lye, it's made by mixing hardwood ash with nothing more than water and then heating it. Maybe wet ashes + a hot Sacramento day would do the trick? According to this source, lye will eat away the galvanized zinc surface and then rust the steel itself. Still, going from what effect ashes have on a galvanized can to what, if any, effect they have on your health is a HUGE LEAP and something I would not speculate on.

  8. #8
    TVWBB 1-Star Olympian Bob Correll's Avatar
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    The bottom of my galvanized ash bucket has corroded and rusted after many years of use, but I have put wet ashes in it many times.
    If it rains, and I don't have at least the kettle part of my Performer covered, water runs down and collects in the ash holder.

    I've also topped Kingsford and other brands of briquettes with lump, it's my preferred method on a WSM.


  9. #9
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    OK, glad I found this thread. I must be doing something wrong.

    Recently purchased a WSM 22. I use the Weber briquettes (also from Lowes @ $11.99). I filled the the ring with Weber briquettes to the top, lit 25 briquettes in the chimney and poured it on top once, and also created a pit in the middle and put them in that way a second time, adding a couple of chunks of wood at this point, filled the water tray(w water), let it stabalize, and cooked Beef Ribs once and wings once. Both the top and bottom shelf.

    Both times, I got a good Low n Slow 250 degrees, however, all the charcoal was done by 5hrs. I had to add lit coals to keep the temp( which was a real problem for me.)
    I live in New York. Temp was < 60 degrees outside. all vents were 100% open most of the time.

    1. What am I doing wrong?
    2. If I am starting to loose heat, can I just add unlit charcoals to the ring or do they need to be lit?
    3. does Lump Charcoal last longer than Briquettes? How is Royal Oak? I see that around at Restaurant depot in huge bags

    TIA

  10. #10
    TVWBB Guru Pat G's Avatar
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    So what is the lump of choice for everyone. I have only used Cowboy so I don't have anything to compare it to. Keep in mind that I'm a frugal guy, the wife calls me "cheap." Is RO lump any better?
    Performer Deluxe(Copper) Genesis Gold B(Redhead) 14.5 WSM 26 OTG 22 OTG 18 OTG Jumbo Joe Gas & Charcoal Go Anywhere, Vortex, Kettle Pizza

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