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Robin's Pages...



bulletSources of Lump Charcoal, Chunks, Pellets, and Wood Chips
bulletWood Types/Flavoring
bulletMaking Your Own Charcoal
bulletRobin's BBQ Book page - Great Books for BBQ and Grilling
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bulletContact Info

*I do not endorse any of the vendors nor guarantee the accuracy of the information (including prices) on this site. Most prices are from May, 2000.              --Robin Powlus

Sources of Lump Charcoal, Chunks, Pellets, and Wood Chips
(Available on-line or at nationwide chain stores)

B & B Charcoal Company
Location: P.O. Box 230, Weimar, TX 78962
Description: Oak & mesquite lump charcoal and chips in 10# to 1250 #.
Prices: $3.75/10# lump. $1.30/2# chips
On-line ordering: 

BBQr's Delight
Location: P.O. Box 8727, Pine Bluff, AR 71611,   877-275-9591
Description: All natural wood pellet available. Twelve different flavors -- More choices than you'll find anywhere! BBQr's Delight wood pellets are 100% flavor wood -- no filler woods to dilute the flavor wood's smoke. Also available at many WalMart
Prices: $4.99/1# pellets (+$5.00 for shipping)
On-line ordering:

Birch Creek
Location: 8880 BabcockRoad, Burtchville, Michigan 48059
Description: Apple, Hickory, Oak, and Maple in Chunks (3"X3"X3") and Chips.
Prices: $9.95/ 3# lump, $3.95/ 3# chips (price includes shipping)
On-line ordering:

Blanton's Mesquite and Pecan BBQ GrillWood
Location: 1330 Lydia Stephenville, Texas 76401
Description: Texas Mesquite or Pecan wood in 2" Chunks, Mini Logs and Pro Logs.
Prices: $25.90/14#  chunks, $59.90/50# pro logs (price includes shipping)
On-line ordering:

Brazos Mesquite
Location: P.O. Box 9009, College Station, Texas 77842,   979- 229-7868
Description: Offer mesquite, hickory, and pecan wood chunks (2"X2"X2") in quantities from 12 pounds to truckloads
Prices: $19.95/12# (price includes shipping)
On-line ordering:

Brisket Bob's SouthWest Barbeque
Location: PO Box 30, Porter TX 77365,  800-388-3004
Description: Mesquite and pecan
Prices: $14.45/10# chunks (price includes shipping)
On-line ordering:
Location: Apartado 322-6100, Ciudad Colon, Costa Rica, 506-249-3125
Description: Coffee Wood has been used as the primary source of cooking fuel in Costa Rica for centuries.  It brings an unsurpassed flavor to barbecued and smoked foods rich, savory, delicious, barbecuing at it's very best.  Great with all sorts of meats, fish, poultry and veggies too!!
Prices: $5.99/.75# ($4.99 for S&H)
On-line ordering:

Kentucky Smoke and Grill
Location: PO Box 1285, Bardstown, KY 40004

Description: White oak barrels used to age fine Kentucky Bourbon are cut up into chunks for your grill or smoker.
Prices: $7.95/2# (+ $3.20 for S&H)
On-line ordering:

Description: Some K-Marts are carrying lump charcoal under the name of "All Natural Chunk Charwood" ( which is a Martha Stewart brand) barcode 26332 10003.
Prices: $5/10#

Ma's Smokin Chips
Location: PO Box 433 (630 E. Church St.), Palouse, Washington 99161, 503-778.5642

Description: Apple, peach, pear cherry, pecan, hickory, mesquite, maple leaf charcoal, and apricot.  Also carry BBQ's Smokers and the like...
Prices: $5.00/2# chips (plus shipping)
On-line ordering:

Outdoor Home
Location: 1661 East St. Louis St., Springfield, MO, 888-869-EGGS
Description: 13 wood types
Prices: $3.99/2# chunk, $6.59 10# lump
On-line ordering:

Peoples Woods
Location: 75 Mill Street, Cumberland, RI 02864,  800-729-5800

Description: 14 wood types
Prices: $11.95/20# chunks, $8.90/18# charcoal
On-line ordering:

True Value Hardware
Description: Your local True Value hardware store can order hardwood lump charcoal for you. Ask for item number 145607.
Prices: $9.99/ 20# lump

Description: Some Wal-Marts are carrying lump charcoal under the name of "Real Flavor" or "Chunk Charwood" (which is a Martha Stewart brand).
Prices: $5/10# Real Flavor; $5.99/8.8# chunk

Wood Types/Flavoring*

Acacia These trees are in the same family as mesquite. When burned in a smoker,
acacia has a flavor similar to mesquite but not quite as heavy. A very hot burning
Alder A delicate flavor with a hint of sweetness.  Goes well with salmon, fish, seafood, pork, poultry, and light-meat game birds
Almond A sweet smoke flavor, light ash. Good with all meats.
Ash Fast burner, light but distinctive flavor. Good with fish and red meats.
Apple and Cherry Slightly sweet fruity smoke that's great with poultry (turns skin dark brown), or ham.
Apricot, Plum, Peach, Nectarine Great on most white or pink meats, including chicken, turkey, pork and fish. The flavor is milder and sweeter than hickory.
Birch Medium-hard wood with a flavor similar to maple. Good with pork and
Cherry Slightly sweet fruity smoke that's great with chicken, turkey, pork, ham, and beef.
Cottonwood It is a softer wood than alder and very subtle in flavor. Use it for
fuel but use some chunks of other woods (hickory, oak, pecan) for more flavor. Don't use green cottonwood for smoking.
Crabapple Similar to apple. Provides a lot of smoke. Rich and fruity. Good with poultry, red meats, game and lamb
Grapevine Tart. Great on most white or pink meats, including chicken, turkey, pork and fish. The flavor is milder and sweeter than hickory.
Hickory The most commonly used wood for smoking. Sweet to strong, heavy bacon flavor. This great flavor works well with pork, ribs, hams, poultry, and beef.  These chips should soak 1-2 hours to prevent a bitter taste.
Lilac Very light, subtle with a hint of floral. Good with seafood and lamb.
Maple Mildly smoky and sweet. Mates well with poultry, ham, cheese, small game birds, and vegetables.
Mesquite Strong earthy flavor. Good with beef, fish, chicken, and game. Smoke will turn from tangy to bitter over an extended cooking.  Not everyone enjoys the taste of mesquite.  Burns very hot.  Recommended for grilling, but not smoking.
Mulberry The smell is sweet and reminds one of apple.
Oak Most versatile of the hardwoods blending well with most meats.  Especially good with beef brisket. RED Oak is good on ribs,
WHITE Oak makes the best coals for longer burning.
Orange, Lemon, Grapefruit Produces a nice mild smoky flavor. Excellent with beef, pork, fish and poultry.
Pear A nice subtle smoke flavor. Much like apple. Excellent with chicken and pork.
Pecan A mellow version of hickory.  Works especially well with poultry, beef, pork and cheese.  Pecan is an all-around superior smoking wood. Burns cool.
Walnut Very heavy smoke flavor, usually mixed with lighter
woods like almond, pear or apple. Can be bitter if used alone. Good with red meats
and game.

*Adapted from Smoke and Spice by Jamison and Jamison (a great cookbook) and the BBQ Porch FAQ

Some sources have recommended that you DO NOT USE pine, fir, spruce, redwood, cedar, cypress, elm, sycamore, liquid amber, lumber scraps, furniture, oleander, China berry, Osage orange, poison oak, wild cherry, shipping pallets, and wood with mold and fungus.  Note:  I have not researched to validate these claims.

Making Your Own Charcoal

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Last updated February 04, 2006