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Lump charcoal is primarily a highly efficient fuel, which is produced by the method of dry distillation – pyrolysis of wood under the influence of high temperature without access to air. In contrast to fossil coals, it is a clean fuel, without the content of harmful substances, sulfur, phosphorus or carcinogens, burning without smoke and flame and having a higher calorific value.
In appearance, lump charcoal is a solid microporous substance of black color, with a characteristic bluish shine. Depending on the density, it is brittle enough, it can break and crumble under mechanical influences. The properties and structure of the material are determined by the temperature in the process of pyrolysis in the production of coal, as well as the quality of the raw materials and the wood.
By its composition, lump charcoal is carbon. Its content is up to 90 percent or higher, depending on the type of feedstock. The composition contains mineral impurities, such as oxides and carbonates of calcium, potassium, manganese, sodium, iron, aluminum, etc., as well as oxygen and hydrogen. The best indicators for strength and density are coal from hardwood species of trees. The most suitable indicators are birch and oak – they are taken as an unspoken reference point for producers and consumers. Birch lump charcoal has a somewhat higher specific heat, but oak coal can keep the temperature longer. Coals from coniferous wood are inferior to deciduous in a number of indices, but they can be grinded and briquetted for increasing their physical and mechanical properties. Briquetting solves the issue of qualitative processing of the residuals of coal screening and dust, which inevitably appear when organizing the production of lump charcoal.
The main advantages of lump charcoal in front of all other types of fuel are undeniable. Probably, because of this reason the best lump charcoal is of high demand and is represented on the market in the widest range.
Top 5 Best Lump Charcoal: Comparison Table
Many people believe that all of the charcoal that is used to make various dishes on the grill or barbecue is quite the same. But in fact, this is not quite true. To obtain high-quality coal, the initial product must also be of high quality. If you want to get a delicious and high-quality dish, we recommend choosing the best lump charcoal based on our reviews. All our top rated products are characterized by a very pleasant aroma, high heating rate and very persistent heat. It’s time to check yourself.
Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes
Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes
Best Overall: Premium Pick - Fogo Premium Review
Fogo Premium Review
Lump charcoal has always been in demand by chefs all over the world. If you know a little about grilling, you must know the company of Fogo. From the very first glance at the charcoal you will understand that it is of a very high quality. It is produced in Central America and has the best characteristics, which should be present in lump charcoal.
This lump charcoal heats up very quickly, especially if you use a special oil liquid Lighter Fluid, recommended by the manufacturer. At the same time it is not burning, but smoldering and allows to cook even the large pieces of meat. Note that you need to be very careful if you do not want to overcook your fish or meat, because the heat from this lump charcoal is very high.
In order to burn the fire you need to take only 4 – 5 pieces of coal as those pieces are large enough. As the quality of coal directly affects the taste of the dishes, this product, made from hardwood trees, gives an appetizing smoky flavor to all dishes. You will definitely enjoy all the dishes that have been cooked on your grill with the use of this best lump charcoal by Fogo.
Why We Like It
- Large size of the chunks
- Is quick to burn and last for a long time
- Produced from all-natural materials
- Adds a tasty smoky flavor to dishes
- Can be used for slow cooking as well
- Good price
Best For Smoking: Most Versatile - Royal Oak Review
Royal Oak Review
The package has a note '100% All Natural', which immediately impresses and intrigues at the same time, as recently this note in the trend. In the case of this lump charcoal, it corresponds to reality. Immediately after the disclosure of the package you can see the naturalness of this lump charcoal as it does not contain any harmful fillers.
As in the case of Fogo, the best lump charcoal by Royal Oak gives the dishes a pleasant smoky flavor. It is ideal for cooking meat, fish and vegetables.
The product is made from hardwoods native to Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. This lump charcoal is fired very easily with the help of a special liquid Royal Oak Lighter and quickly (within 15 minutes) reaches the required temperature. One of the key advantages of this lump charcoal is the low ash production. Thus, you get a clean high-quality heat and can cook meat as a real chef. This natural lump charcoal is ideal for cooking dishes that need high temperatures as the distribution of heat is even.
Why We Like It
- Is lightning easily
- Gives perfect fuel efficiency
- Reduces the time for cooking
- Adds a perfect smoky flavor
- Is produced specially for smokers
Best Specially For BGE Lovers: Big Green Egg Review
Big Green Egg Review
This lump charcoal is made of natural and organic oak and deciduous trees of the highest quality and specially for Big Green Egg. It will undoubtedly serve as a highlight for your barbecue party. A huge bag of this lump charcoal will be enough for cooking a large company.
This product is an example of environmentally friendly lump charcoal without impurities and harmful additives. It almost does not smoke and does not pollute the air, so if you are fond of perfectly-cooked delicious dishes, you will be satisfied with the purchase without any doubts.
The pieces of charcoal acquire a bright shade during combustion and produce a minimum of ash. After the first cooking, you will have the opportunity to make sure that the lump charcoal is absolutely clean.
Since petroleum products and nitrates do not take part in the production of this lump charcoal, your meat will have an unrivaled taste and aroma.
Brag to your friends how skillfully you can to cook steaks for every taste without any bitter aftertaste. Be careful, because your friends can believe that the food was ordered from the restaurant.
Why We Like It
- Developed for Big Green Egg bbq
- Doesn’t contain harmful chemicals
- Has a bright color while burning
- Produces less ash
- Is certified in EU
Best Hardwood: Jealous Devil Review
Jealous Devil Review
This lump charcoal is a favorite among many Americans. Because Kamado grills require the highest quality lump charcoal, the best choice for them will be this one. It was developed exclusively for this type of grills.
Wicked Year acts as the supplier of this product. The size of the pieces is not huge, but large enough. The flying sparks are practically absent and the coal does not leave much ash after the burning. This is an excellent indicator of quality.
One package will serve you for a long time and help in preparing a variety of delicious dishes. The price of this charcoal is above the average, but the result is worth it to overpay. It is ideal for cooking Christmas, as well as Easter dishes for a big family or for bbq parties with friends outside. The lump charcoal remaining in the grill after cooking will fester for about 5 hours.
If you prefer slow cooking, this lump charcoal is exactly what you need to consider. In combination with your favorite Kamado grill, this lump charcoal will help maintain the perfect flavor of dishes for a long time.
Since the production of this lump charcoal uses a mixture of different types of trees, it is ideal for making smoked and fried dishes. Be sure, by the taste of the dishes you cook, you will be shocked. They will resemble real tasty masterpieces.
- Is the best lump charcoal for Kamado grills
- Is perfect for slow cooking
- Large pack
- Used economically
- Doesn’t produce ash
- No flying sparks
- Not all the chunks are large
Best For Steaks: Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes Review
Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes Review
Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes are the best bbq charcoal briquettes not only because of their affordable price, but also for several other reasons. These best charcoal briquettes are developed of all-natural material and real high-quality wood. This variant doesn’t seem to be very innovative if to compare with other similar products on the market, but still it remains very popular. For example, the pack of 2 bags with Kingsford Original Charcoal Briquettes will be enough for the whole summer if you are fond of family dinners on the backyard.
What is also important, these charcoal briquettes are easy to light and the manufacturer promises that they will be ready to run the cooking process after 15 minutes or so. It means that these high-quality effective briquettes will be nice to take to the picnic or tailgate party. The burning time is also great.
Be sure that your favorite steaks and ribs will taste even better than before because flavor is everything when we are talking about cooking and barbecue.
- Cheap charcoal
- Bright color when burning
- Ideal variant for chicken, steaks and ribs
- Long burning time
- Easy and quick lighting
- Natural charcoal briquettes
- The bags are pretty small in size
Buyer’s Guide: All You Need to Know About the Best Lump Charcoal
Main Advantages of Using a Lump Charcoal in Cooking
Charcoal is considered to be a universal means, as it is suitable for various fields of activity. It can be used for domestic and industrial purposes. This is due to its numerous advantages:
- Ecologically clean type of fuel. It is safe to use since it does not release harmful substances into the air.
- This type of coal can’t ignite spontaneously. That is why it can be safely stored on the backyard even in the open air.
- During combustion, smoke and flame is not generated, which also positively affects the safety of the application. The temperature is very high.
- High heat transfer indicator, which guarantees a high level of efficiency during operation.
- It is possible to use for open burning. This type of coal is increasingly used during outside parties to make a fire for a barbecue. Also, lump charcoal is suitable for the fireplace.
- Long burning and heat able to fry different products.
Please note that for the convenience of making a fire and fuel transport, it is best to use modern and convenient charcoal. Its large chunks are long-burning and provide a lot of heat. In this case, it is a universal property. This is a very important advantage for making a fire.
How to Choose the Best Lump Charcoal?
Having bought a pack of the lump charcoal, you do not need to think about firewood for barbecue, because it is fast and convenient. But there are so many coal manufacturers, so how to make the right choice?
Inspect the Bag
Check whether the bag contains dirt and stains. If it does, it means that it is not of top quality and it would be better to avoid such product.
Check the Ingredients
Pay attention to what the charcoal is made of. Birch will keep the heat well. With it, you will have time to cook 2-3 servings of steaks. Oak is a very long time flared up. It is better to choose it if you are cooking for a big company.
Clarify the Expiration Dates
Look at the expiration dates. Otherwise, in a hurry, you can grab the expired charcoal. Do not be surprised, because it happens. The coal fails easily fail – it will not inflame or won’t keep the heat.
Check Size of Charcoal Chunks
For a maximum fuel efficiency it would be better to choose the lump charcoal with large chunks. Also, they allow controlling the temperature well. Smaller pieces burn longer.
What Charcoal Is the Best for Cooking? Types of Charcoal
So, the best charcoal for grilling is made from wood with the help of the process of wood pyrolysis. As a result, charcoal for barbecue is easily ignited, gives off a huge amount of heat during combustion, burns almost without smoke, doesn’t emit tar and juices that can get on the food being cooked. But what are the main types of charcoal?
Initially, all charcoal was lumpy and it matters what it is made of. The harder is the tree, the better is the charcoal. Good charcoal has beautiful large pieces. The bag with hardwood charcoal has less dust and it burns better. Usually, the lumps of the charcoal are different in size and form. Oak, hornbeam, beech and other hard varieties of wood are the best raw materials for charcoal.
The best charcoal briquettes, unlike lump charcoal, have the same shape and denser texture, which is the result of pressing. Briquettes consist of pressed coal, as well as binding elements and substances that promote rapid ignition. Briquettes give almost as much heat as lump charcoal. Their advantage lies in the fact that the briquettes are the same in size and shape. When using briquettes, you get an even layer of burning coals, which is not given by the best charcoal for grilling, different in size and shape.
Binchotan is a special type of a the best charcoal for grilling that is mainly used for grilling in Japan. It can be considered to be a type of lump charcoal, but with different characteristics mainly because it is made of unique ubame oak. It is ideal for cooking because it doesn’t produce any odors and burns very clean and hotter. Of course, binchotan is less popular than wood charcoal and briquettes because its price is very high.
Verdict and our recommendation for 2021
Now, when you know everything about the lump charcoals, you will easier make a right choice. This product will become your favorite during the barbecue season and you will miss the taste of smoky meat and vegs in winter. Based on reviews, we at mykitchenadvisor believe that the best lump charcoal is Fogo Premium. It has a lot of positive reviews for its excellent temperature control, eco-friendliness, flavor imparting and efficiency. A large bag with this natural charcoal is full of big chunks and doesn’t contain dust and chemical premises. So, you should think about it!