Why use a charcoal basket in a Kamado Grill image

Why Use a Charcoal Basket in a Kamado Grill?

It's hard to beat a kamado grill. Kamado grills were invented thousands of years ago in ancient China, and they’ve been improving ever since - making today’s kamados some of the most in-demand grills on the market. When it comes to perfect grilling, nothing has been time-tested quite like the Kamado grill.

But they’re a pain in the butt to clean, and their design can lead to uneven cooking because of restricted airflow to the charcoal. Hey, even thousands of years of engineering can be improved on, right? That’s why you’ve got to use a charcoal basket in your kamado grill if you want to make your life - and your grilling - way, way easier.

Even our friends over at Food Fire Friends are convinced - a charcoal basket is definitely worth it when you’re cooking on a kamado grill!

Benefits of Using a Charcoal Basket in your Kamado Grill
What are some of the benefits of using a charcoal basket in your kamado grill? A basket can help you…

1. Remove all your charcoal from your kamado grill at once. If you’re not using a charcoal basket in your kamado grill, you’re most likely trying to shovel your charcoal out with a fireplace shovel or your spouse’s favorite kitchen spoon (put it back, you’re gonna get yelled at) or worse yet, pick it out with your hands. This is a frustrating, time-consuming exercise in insanity, and you can damage the inside of your kamado grill this way, too.

With a charcoal basket, you just grab the handles, give it a little shake, and pull all the leftover charcoal out in one shot. 10 seconds versus 15 minutes of playing claw machine with your charcoal grill is an obvious win. Plus you don’t have to lean way down into your grill to get the charcoal out, which is uncomfortable, unsafe, and looks ridiculous, too.

2. Save money by reusing charcoal. Throwing away perfectly good charcoal after you grill is like throwing money down the drain. With a charcoal basket, all your unused charcoal comes out at once, so you can use it the next time you grill.

3. Ensure your grill cools down faster. Competition grillers usually have to pack up in a rush after competitions are over, and trying to manhandle and tie down a hot grill is dangerous. Using a charcoal basket, you can remove the hot coals so your kamado cools down faster. Make sure if your grill is still hot, you use heat proof gloves to take the basket out. You’re not supposed to be grilling your own arms unless you’ve entered a really freaky competition.

4. Heat your grill. Your kamado can get hotter and burn better with a charcoal basket. Fire needs oxygen to burn, and dumping charcoal into your grill isn’t the best way to get good airflow through your coals. That’s where a charcoal basket comes in. A charcoal basket holds the coals slightly off the sides of the grill to increase airflow, meaning you get to enjoy more even cooking without hot and cold spots. Your grill can get hotter, too, with better airflow, for that perfect sear and making pizzas in the grill.

5. Keep your vent holes clean. Small bits of wood or charcoal can clog the vent holes in your kamado and inhibit proper airflow. Sound familiar? With a charcoal basket, your vent holes stay clean and tidy so they work the way they’re supposed to.

Here’s How to Use a Charcoal Basket in your Kamado Grill
Adding a step to your grilling process that actually makes the whole thing easier? Yes, please.

  1. Clean out any remaining ashes or charcoal from your kamado grill.
  2. Remove the charcoal grate if one is included in your grill. This step isn’t necessary but it will lead to better burn with fewer things in the way of airflow to your coals.
  3. Place your charcoal basket at the bottom of your grill. The fit should be loose-ish and easy to pull out. Kick Ash Baskets makes charcoal baskets for all sorts of different kamado grills including Big Green Egg, Pit Boss, Kamado Joe, and lots more. Make sure to buy the basket that fits your grill for the best fit.
  4. Dump in your charcoal and light as usual. If you prefer to light your charcoal before dumping it in the grill, that’s fine, too.
  5. Cook and enjoy!

Are Charcoal Baskets Worth It?

Absolutely! If you want a better grill with a more even temperature and a simpler cleanup, a charcoal basket is definitely the very next grilling purchase you need to make. Ready? Get your charcoal basket here!