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Which lump charcoal to use

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  • TRowan
    Former Member
    • May 2020
    • 1

    Which lump charcoal to use

    Hi am a new subscriber. I just purchased a Kamado Joe iii and so far have only used Kamado Joe lump charcoal. There are so many brands, which one is best?
  • Huskee
    Pit Boss
    • May 2014
    • 15042
    • central MI, USA
    • Follow me on Instagram, huskeesbarbecue

      Want a free bottle of whiskey? Check out my link to Flaviar.com, you join with it, we both get a $50 bottle free.

      Smokers / Grills
      • Yoder loaded Wichita offset smoker
      • PBC
      • Grilla Silverbac pellet grill
      • Slow 'N Sear Deluxe Kamado (SnSK)
      • Dyna-Glo XL Premium dual chamber charcoal grill
      • Weber 22" Original Kettle Premium (copper)
      • Weber 26" Original Kettle Premium (black)
      • Weber Jumbo Joe Gold (18.5")
      • Weber Smokey Joe Silver (14.5")
      • Brinkmann cabinet charcoal smoker (repurposed)

      Thermometers
      • (3) Maverick XR-50: 4-probe Wireless Thermometers
      • (7) Maverick ET-732s
      • (1) Maverick ET-735 Bluetooth (in box)
      • (1) Smoke by ThermoWorks
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      • Thermapen MkII, orange
      • ThermoPop, yellow
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      Accessories
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      • Weber grill topper
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      • Drip 'N Griddle Pan, 22' Easy Spin Grate, and Elevated Cooking grate, by ABCbarbecue
      • Pittsburgh Digital Moisture Meter

      Beverages
      • Favorite summer beer: Leinenkugels Summer & Grapefruit Shandy, Hamm's, Michelob Ultra Pure Gold
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      About me
      Real name: Aaron
      Location: Farwell, Michigan- near Clare. (dead center of lower peninsula)

      Occupation:
      • Healthcare- Licensed & Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) for MidMichigan Health, a University of Michigan Health System.

    #2
    Welcome! Thanks for joining up. I'm not sure there's a "best", but I know I like Fogo when I use lump.

    Comment


    • kenrobin
      kenrobin commented
      Editing a comment
      Another vote here for Fogo

    • ofelles
      ofelles commented
      Editing a comment
      Welcome and one more for FOGO

    • pjlstrat
      pjlstrat commented
      Editing a comment
      Fogo hear as well....but I find I like their Premium over their Super Premium (SP). The chunks in the SP are HUGE....which is great when you get them lit but holy cow I struggle with it. The premium works much better for me. When I bought the Premium I still had 1/2 a bag of the SP and the combination of the two was ideal. Mostly premium with a few big SP chucks thrown in.
  • TheQuietOne
    Club Member
    • Sep 2018
    • 176
    • Oshkosh, WI

    #3
    I use Grove or B&B. I don't know about best. They're what they sell at the local hardware store. Both work fine.

    Comment

    • Oak Smoke
      Club Member
      • Aug 2018
      • 372
      • Central Texas

      #4
      I like Kamado Joe big block, it has fewer small pieces and burns well. I also use Rockwood and B&B both are very good. The only one I absolutely won't use is Cowboy. I may have gotten a bad bag, but I didn't care for it.

      Comment

      • Texas Larry
        Club Member
        • May 2017
        • 1433
        • Wilson County, TX
        • Kamado Joe Big Joe 2
          Weber 22” Premium/SNS
          Weber Jumbo Joe/SNS
          JoeTisserie
          Thermoworks Smoke
          Thermoworks 2K Thermocouple
          Thermapen
          Thermapop
          Thermoworks Dash
          Too many gadgets, accessories, and tools
          Favorite beer: Alaskan Amber

        #5
        Welcome from south Texas! Glad you’re here. Looks like you’re already getting some good responses from the knowledgeable folks here. More to come I’m sure.

        Comment

        • RonB
          Club Member
          • Apr 2016
          • 12720
          • Near Richmond VA
          • Weber Performer Deluxe
            SNS
            Pizza insert
            Rotisserie
            Smokenator 1000
            Cookshack Smokette Elite
            2 Thermapens
            Chefalarm
            Dot
            lots of probes.
            CyberQ

          #6
          Welcome to The Pit. Sorry, but I can't help. The only lumps I get are from my wife...

          Comment


          • smokin fool
            smokin fool commented
            Editing a comment
            I think I married your sister in law
        • LA Pork Butt
          Charter Member
          • Dec 2014
          • 5372
          • Grew up in New Orleans, lived in Texas for 20 years, lived in Mandeville, LA for 22 years. I now liv

          #7
          I use Royal Oak, but I realize not everyone likes it. I think it is good in relation to price. Here is a link to a database that evaluates Lump Charcoal based on four characteristics. http://www.nakedwhiz.com/lump.htm

          Comment


          • Beefchop
            Beefchop commented
            Editing a comment
            Same.

          • smokin fool
            smokin fool commented
            Editing a comment
            +2 on Royal Oak
            Then there's the fact that all other lump is twice the price around here
        • Donw
          Club Member
          • Jul 2017
          • 3055

          #8
          Welcome from Maryland. I don’t use lump often but when I do I use Fogo.

          Comment

          • AverageJoe
            Club Member
            • Jun 2018
            • 395
            • Fruita Colorado
            • Current Grills/Smoker (MCS is hitting)
              Brinkman Trailmaster Ceramic Egg
              Classic Pit Barrel Cooker with
              US ARMY logo plate
              Nexgrill Deluxe 6 burner gas grill

              Accessories
              CGS special order WOO Ring
              CGS 13" round ceramic stone
              Thermoworks Black Thermapen MK4
              Thermoworks BlueDot
              Thermoworks Smoke

              Cutlery/Prep Stuff
              Dalstrong 12" Granton Edge Slicer
              OXO Steel Chef's Mandoline Slicer
              Random other knives and shears

            #9
            Welcome to the pit from Western Colorado. I use Royal Oak and Cowboy Lump in my Kamado.

            Comment

            • JoeSousa
              Club Member
              • Sep 2016
              • 879
              • Spokane, WA

              #10
              The Kamado Joe Big Block has some of the biggest pieces I have seen. Fogo is probably my favorite though. I would avoid Cowboy as it seems to have more small pieces and dust. Rockwood is pretty good. B&B is good too.

              Comment

              • Mosca
                Charter Member
                • Oct 2014
                • 3381
                • PA
                • Large Big Green Egg, Weber Performer Deluxe, Weber Smokey Joe Silver, Maverick 732, DigiQ, and too much other stuff to mention.

                #11
                Find something that you like, and that is easy to find locally, and use it often. That way you get used to how it works in your KJ. It will reduce variables, make vent settings easier in a variety of conditions.

                For me, I can pick up Wegman’s brand at my local supermarket. It isn’t a matter of it being the best; it’s a matter of me knowing how it acts. Plus if it’s January 6th and I need lump in half an hour, it’s there and familiar.

                Once you got that down pat, order FOGO, or Rockwood, and see how it works differently. It won’t be THAT MUCH different, but it will be different. But you will have a firm base of knowledge, so that you will know that the difference is the lump, not one of the other possible variables.

                Comment


                • Huskee
                  Huskee commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Well said. That's how I view Kingsford briquets. Elitists will say it's garbage, it's the McDonalds of charcoal. I highly disagree. I know how it works, it's as dependable as the sunrise, it's available everywhere, and it's inexpensive. Do the same with lump.

                • Mosca
                  Mosca commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Yep, KBB is fine. It gives a flavor if you don’t get it hot enough, otherwise it’s just a heat source. I use it interchangeably with whatever else I have. In fact, I mix briquettes all together. I don’t think it really matters, Heat is heat. I do the same with lump. My containers have probably three different types mixed together.
                  Last edited by Mosca; May 12, 2020, 12:26 PM.

                • HouseHomey
                  HouseHomey commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Well said. Jan 6 here is just another day though.

                  Huskee I only use KBB in my kettles. Man a block of cherry and KBB make dynamite ribs!!
              • jfmorris
                Club Member
                • Nov 2017
                • 3030
                • Huntsville, Alabama
                • Jim Morris

                  Cookers
                  • Camp Chef FTG900 Flat Top Grill (2020)
                  • Weber Genesis II E-410 w/ GrillGrates (2019)
                  • Weber Performer Deluxe 22.5" w/ GrillGrates & Slow 'N Sear & Drip ‘N Griddle & Party Q (2007)
                  • Custom Built Offset Smoker (304SS, 22"x34" grate, circa 1985)
                  • King Kooker 94/90TKD 105K/60K dual burner patio stove
                  • Lodge L8D03 5 quart dutch oven
                  • Lodge L10SK3 12" skillet
                  • Anova
                  Thermometers
                  • Thermoworks Smoke w/ Wifi Gateway
                  • Thermoworks Dot
                  • Thermoworks Thermapen Classic
                  • Thermoworks RT600C
                  Beverages
                  • Whatever I brewed and have on tap!

                #12
                I went through a bag of B&B lump recently, sold at my local Academy at $12.99 for a 20 pound bag, and really liked it. The only other lump I had used before was Cowboy, which I do NOT recommend.

                Comment

                • Steve B
                  Club Member
                  • Jun 2016
                  • 2981
                  • Rockland county New York
                  • Lonestar Grillz 24x36 offset smoker, grill, w/ main chamber charcoal grate and 3 tel-tru thermometers - left, right and center
                    Yoke Up custom charcoal basket and a Grill Wraps cover.

                    22.5 copper kettle w/ SnS, DnG, BBQ vortex, gasket and stainless steel hinge kit.

                    Napoleon gas grill (soon to go bye bye) rotting out.

                    1 maverick et-733 digital thermometer - black
                    1 maverick et-733 - gray
                    1 new standard grilling remote digital thermometer
                    1 thermoworks thermopen mk4 - red
                    1 thermoworks thermopop - red

                    Pre Miala flavor injector
                    taylor digital scale
                    TSM meat grinder
                    chefs choice food slicer
                    cuisinhart food processor
                    food saver vacuum sealer
                    TSM harvest food dehydrator

                  #13
                  Welcome aboard from NY.
                  B&B and Rockwood are good. But I have since gone exclusively with FOGO. Yes it’s more expensive but it is far superior to the others mentioned here.
                  Like jfmorris said I don’t recommend Cowboy.
                  But I did find a good purpose for it. I use it to do a burn out in my kamados for cleaning.

                  Comment

                  • Attjack
                    Club Member
                    • Aug 2017
                    • 3978
                    • Primo XL
                      Weber 26"
                      Weber 22"
                      Weber 22"
                      Weber 18"
                      Weber Jumbo Joe
                      Weber Green Smokey Joe (Thanks, Mr. Bones!)
                      Weber Smokey Joe
                      Orion Smoker

                      DigiQ DX2
                      Slow 'N Sear XL
                      Arteflame 26.75" Insert

                      Blaze BLZ-4-NG 32-Inch 4-Burner Built-In
                      - With Rear Infrared Burner
                      - With Infrared Sear Burner
                      - With Rotisserie
                      Empava 2 Burner Gas Cooktop
                      Weber Spirit 210
                      - With Grillgrates
                      ​​​​​​​ - With Rotisserie
                      Weber Q2200

                      Blackstone Pizza Oven

                      Portable propane burners (3)
                      Propane turkey Fryer

                      Fire pit grill

                    #14
                    I look for a balance between quality and price. It's not worth it to me to buy the extra premium lump. However, it's also not worth it to me to buy lump with a lot of tiny pieces and dust at the bottom or worse rocks.

                    Comment


                    • HouseHomey
                      HouseHomey commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Whatever shall Goldilocks do? 😃
                  • ColonialDawg
                    Club Member
                    • Oct 2017
                    • 488
                    • Coastal VA

                    #15
                    I like B&B - consistent charcoal size, very little dust, easy to find at my local Ace. I tried FOGO and didn’t care for it - too many small pieces and dust in the bag, plus it costs more.

                    Comment


                    • Mosca
                      Mosca commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I’ve gotten bags of FOGO with the exact opposite problem: lumps between softball and football sized. I think it’s where it was on the pallet.

                      I got two bags of Rockwood once, there wasn’t a single piece with a diameter larger than a half dollar. It still burned fine in my BGE, but I had to keep an eye on it to keep from clogging the bottom grate.

                    • smokin fool
                      smokin fool commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Mosca brings up a really valid point, the handling of the product.
                      I look for right off the pallet rather than on the shelf where some stock person has dropped/rammed the bag onto the shelf.
                      Walmart sells charcoal off the pallet, great product.
                      Canadian Tire sells charcoal off the shelf, coal dust and nuggets.

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