How to Use the Charcoal Basket

Whether you’re a seasoned smoker or more of the casual type, you’ve probably heard of a charcoal basket. Some folks have their charcoal process down to a science while others find that their hard work for consistent heat goes up in the smoke rather than into the meat. Want an easy solution? Enter: The Charcoal Basket. Here are 6 reasons why it’s a necessary accessory for any smoker.

Indirect Method and Firebox

The charcoal basket holds the coals either in the center of the pit or in a designated location within your grill or smoker (like to the far right or left of the main barrel). This allows for the versatility of experiencing the all around benefits of the charcoal basket no matter your smoking preference.

Easier Heat Management

The centralized location of the charcoal or wood allows you to have better control over managing the heat inside your smoker. You can easily remove wood or charcoal from the basket to bring the temperature down or add more to increase the heat with the confidence that the new fuel will burn right alongside the already lit charcoal and/or wood.

Steady Cooking Temperatures

The centralized location of the heat source in the basket provides a more steady and even cooking temperature. Since the charcoal and/or wood is burning more steadily, the heat circulates at a more consistent pace, saving fuel, sparing you the necessity to constantly monitor the heat, and allowing your overall cook to run more smoothly.

Better/More Even Airflow

Since the basket itself has grates on all sides, it allows for airflow from above, all sides, and underneath the heat source, allowing the smoke and heat to flow more easily within the smoker. The better the airflow, the more efficient your overall cook.

Easier Cleanup

Aside from ashes all falling in one place for cleaning out your smoker at the end of your cook, it allows for consistent cleanup throughout the cook to support consistent airflow and effective heat management as well as an easier clean up after your cook is finished.


The individual benefits of the charcoal basket that make the process easier, supporting more efficient cooking processes all contribute to a much more sustainable cook producing overall more tender, flavorful, and quality BBQ! And who doesn’t love great BBQ?!

As we roll out our grills and smokers for the entire summer, it’s easy to think about new recipes and food techniques to introduce better food to our families. Another perspective is to think about the accessories, like the charcoal basket, that will improve your grill or smoker as a whole, making your overall cook and those traditional recipes even better!