Can You Use Charcoal in a Wood Pellet Grill?

Can you use charcoal in a wood pellet grill?” is a question we see often online.

People want to know if they can use their old charcoal grill to make delicious wood-smoked food with their new pellet smokers. 

The answer is…it depends. In this blog post, we’ll explain and tell you whether or not you can use charcoal in a wood pellet grill. Stay tuned!

How to the Pellet Grill Works?

A pellet grill is an outdoor cooking appliance that uses wood pellets to create heat. The pellets are fed into a firebox, lit and burned.

The heat from the pellets is then used to cook food placed on a grill grate. Pellet grills are a type of smoker and can be used to cook food like other smokers.

Pellet grills have many advantages over other types of grills. They are easy to use and can be set to cook food at a consistent temperature.

Pellet grills also produce very little smoke and can be used to cook food in areas where open flames are not allowed.

How to Safely Use Charcoal In A Pellet Grill?

Here are a few tips to help you safely use charcoal on your grill:

1. Choose the correct type of charcoal. Coal and other materials can contain chemicals that give your food an off-flavor.

2. Preheat your grill. This will help ensure that your charcoal burns evenly.

3. Add the charcoal to the grill. You can add charcoal directly to the firebox or use a chimney starter.

4. Allow the charcoal to reach a grey ash colour before adding your food. This will ensure that it’s properly heated and ready to cook.

5. After cooking, allow the charcoal to cool completely before disposing. Do not dump hot coals in trash cans or dumpsters; this could start a fire.

By following these simple tips, you can safely and effectively use charcoal in your pellet grill to create delicious BBQ pellets flavours that everyone will love!

When To NOT Use Charcoal In A Pellet Grill?

We love the taste of charcoal-grilled food; there are certain circumstances when better cooking methods exist.

  • If you’re looking for a fast, easy cook time, there are better ways to go than charcoal.
  • It takes patience and some know-how to get the charcoal to the perfect cooking temperature; even then, it can be unpredictable.
  • Using charcoal can be logistically challenging if you’re cooking for a large group of people.
  • You’ll need enough charcoal to cover the entire grill surface, and you’ll need to make sure that it’s evenly distributed. This can be difficult to do without making a mess.
  • Another downside of using charcoal is that it produces smoke. This smoke can be a nuisance and cause your food to absorb some soot from the burning charcoal.
  • If you’re looking for a clean cook, free of smoke and soot, then charcoal is not the best option. Finally, charcoal grills can be difficult to clean
  • The ash from the burned charcoal can be messy, and removing all traces from the grill surface can be challenging. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance cooking option, there are better ways to go than charcoal.

Can You Put Charcoal In The Drum Of The Pellet Grill?

Can You Use Charcoal in a Wood Pellet Grill?

Pellet grills are becoming increasingly popular for their ability to deliver great-tasting food with minimal effort. 

The short answer is yes, you can put charcoal in the drum of a pellet grill. However, it is important to note that doing so will result in a significantly different cooking experience than what pellet grills are designed for. 

Pellet grills are designed to run on pellets made from compressed wood or other biomass materials. These pellets are burned in a chamber that is fed by an auger.

The auger constantly turns, ensuring that the pellets are evenly burned and that the temperature in the grill is consistent.

When charcoal is used in the pellet grill, it is placed in a basket that sits above the burn chamber.

This means the pellets are not constantly fed into the fire, as with a traditional pellet grill.

 As a result, temperature control is more difficult when using charcoal in a pellet grill. Additionally, the smoke flavour of the food will be different since the pellets are not being burned.

If you decide to use charcoal in your pellet grill, starting with a small amount is important. Place the charcoal in the basket and light it using a chimney starter.

Once the charcoal is lit, add more as needed to maintain the desired temperature. Be sure to monitor the grill closely, as it will be easier for the fire to get out of control when using Charcoal.

It is also important to note that not all pellet grills are designed to accommodate charcoal baskets.

If your grill did not come with a basket, it is likely not meant to be used with charcoal. Check the owner’s manual for your grill to be sure.

Which are the best Charcoal Pellets for Smoking on a Pellet Grill Smoker?

Two main charcoal pellets are available on the market: lump charcoal and briquettes.

Lump charcoal is made from 100% natural wood and is preferred for smoking on a pellet grill smoker.

Charcoal Briquettes are made from a mixture of wood and coal, and they are better than lump charcoal for smoking on a pellet grill smoker.

When it comes to choosing the best charcoal pellets for smoking on a pellet grill smoker, there are a few things that you need to take into consideration.

The first thing you need to consider is the type of wood you want to use. There are a variety of woods that can be used for smoking, such as hickory, oak, mesquite, and cherry.

Each type of wood has its unique wood flavour, so you will need to experiment to find the one you like best.

Another thing that you need to consider is the amount of charcoal that you will need. The amount of charcoal you need will depend on the size of the wood pellet smoker you have.

If you have a small pellet grill smoker, you only need a small amount of charcoal. If you have a large pellet grill smoker,

Then you will need a larger amount of charcoal. Once you have decided on the type of charcoal that you want to use and the amount of charcoal that you need,

The next thing you need to do is find the best charcoal pellets for smoking on a pellet grill smoker.

These are the two best charcoal pellets:

Is A Pellet Grill Right For You?

A pellet grill is an outdoor cooking appliance that uses compressed wood pellets as fuel. Pellet grills are popular among outdoor enthusiasts because they offer various cooking options, from slow and low-temperature smoking to high-heat grilling.

Is a pellet grill right for you? That depends on a few factors, including your budget, cooking style, and the type of food you like

A pellet grill is a great option if you’re looking for an affordable, all-in-one outdoor cooking solution. Pellet grills are inexpensive to purchase and maintain, offering a wide range of cooking capabilities.

If you enjoy cooking a variety of different foods, a pellet grill is a good choice. You can use a pellet grill to smoke, grill, and bake, allowing you to prepare a wide range of dishes.

A pellet grill is an excellent option if you’re a barbecue fan. Pellet grills can reach high temperatures, making them ideal for searing and grilling.


In conclusion, while using charcoal in a wood pellet grill is technically possible, it is generally not recommended or suitable for optimal performance.

Wood pellet grills are designed to use wood pellets as their primary fuel source, providing a distinct flavour and consistent heat output.

Charcoal, on the other hand, burns differently than wood chips and can create challenges when used in a pellet grill. 

Charcoal tends to burn hotter and faster than wood pellets, resulting in temperature fluctuations and difficulty maintaining a steady cooking temperature.

Additionally, charcoal produces more ash and requires more frequent cleaning than wood pellets.

Leave a Comment