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I just got me a Weber kettle and am goingt to try it out this weekend. How is the best way to add charcoal, lit, unlit? The manual says on long cooking time to add 16 (8 on each side). Any help would be appreciated.


Hi Troy,
I use my Weber Kettle all the time. Just got my new 26.75 inch kettle for Father's Day and love it!! My humble suggestion would be to buy the grill that has the sides that have hinges so you can add coals without having to lift up the grill. I also use grates that hook onto the charcoal grate and keep the coals to the side. I have used the baskets that sometimes come with the kettle, but I haven't liked them as much. I only add lit coals to my Weber. When I'm doing ribs, I use about 20-25 coals and they will sit at 250 for about 1.5 hours. Then I add about 10-15 more lit coals after that. My experience is that the temp is 50 degrees higher at the thermometer on the lid than on the grill. I went to Walmart and bought a cheap oven thermometer that I can put right on the grill to tell me the actual meat level temp. I also use the probe thermometer stuck through a potato sitting on the grill for the same information. Whichever works for you. Good luck and good grilling!
Wow the 26.75 im jealous... That would leave so much larger indirect area for ribs and chicken..
Troy what are you wanting to cook? I wouldn't suggest a pork butt on the Weber kettle. the heat is just to close. IT is great for chicken and steaks either direct or indirect. for ribs you need a rib rack or do the coil method. I have the grate with the sides that flip up so you can add wood chunks and play with the coals. In my experience you have to do what ever you are doing inside the weber fast as the coals can really get going if it is open to long. I like the side coal buckets but can't remember if they came in the basic grill or if I bought them but they are a must for ribs. Sometimes if I have alot of ribs I will even make a foil shield to keep the heat directly away from them. You will need a rib rack and you need to get a good one that holds 4 rack real close together so the outsides stay away from the coals.
depending on how much more time you have to cook and or how much heat you need lets you decide between lit or unlit coals
Thanks for the tips. Mine didn't come with the hinged grate or the the baskets but I plan on getting them soon, I don't get out of Sanpete very often.

My 7 year old and I were watching PBS saturday and the guy was smoking a brisket and my boy said, "We need to make that dad." I haven't had much luck with the 1 brisket I did on the gas grill. I have had success with the pork butt so I think I'll got that route.

Thanks again for the tips.

Take a trip into WalMart, Lowes or Home Depot, they have the grates with side hinged sections for about $13.00.

If it was me doing it on an old fashioned grate, (no hinges), I'd set a medium sized disposable pan in the base on the charcoal grate, load the empty side of the grate with unlit charcoal and start 1/2 a chimney starter of charcoal to get things going.

Put a couple of chunks on top of the fire.

Fill the pan up 3/4 with hot water, put the cooking grate on and lid the kettle for about 10 minutes, take off the lid and add the meat over the pan and away from the fire, re lid and turn the lid so that the vents are the same side as the meat and away from the fire too!

Give it about an hour, and start another 1/2 chimney of charcoal, let it get good and hot, then remove the lid, take out the grate with the meat on it, pour in the new lit charcoal, add back the grate with the meat on it, re lid.

Stick a Turkey fryer or candy thermometer through the top vents, leave them 100% open, and control your fire with the bottom vents.

It's a pain in the neck with out the hinged grate, but all it takes is time and patience. :wink:


Another way to do it with the unhinged grates is to set your charcoal chimney on the ground and set the cooking grate (with the food still on it) on top of the chimney. It's quick, simple, and gives you full access to the coals. This is what I do when I have to tend coals in my UDSs. I just keep a pair of leather gloves handy to move the cooking grate.

elkski;p="17408 Wrote:for ribs you need a rib rack or do the coil method.

Forgive me if this is a stupid question, but what is the coil method?


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elkski;p="17408 Wrote:I wouldn't suggest a pork butt on the Weber kettle. the heat is just to close.
No, no, no! With a Smokenator, butts are perfect!
RR_fan was that "ol Stevey boy you were watching? BBQ U? Steve Raichlen. He emailed me back a long time ago and said some of his staff use Traegers and love 'em. Weber is one of his sponsors.
Gene.....I saw Steve Raichlen's show for the first time today.....it's now called "Primal Grill"........and all he was using was wood burners.......Let's hear it for wood........No pellet poopers were there...... :lol:


Real men don't use pellets!
I never saw any pellet rigs either on BBQ U. There were BGE's in the background and a mess of different size Webers'. One he called a "Ranch Grill" I think. Huge, like 3-3 1/2 ft across.
The Ranch grill is a giant Weber Kettle and costs over $1000, great if you have some spare change, but you could just buy 8 ordinary sized ones and have loads more cooking space!
Naw, just buy some WSM's. Santa is coming soon! Big Grin
if you have'nt used the weber yet git yer money back. buy a pellet grill and fugetabouit. charcoal is burnt wood mixed with coal. yuck. just add pellets when the hopper gets low. oh and don't stand over the unit like a weber, enjoy your day and make some sides. good luck. pellet heads unite.
Uh, yeah. That WSM or the new WSM 22" is looking better and better!! Just need to practice a bit on both then Chris and I will take the walks more often!! OH YEAH!!!!! Big Grin
Dougy boy, why is it when you put up posts like this an Everly Brothers song come to mind? "All I Have To Do Is Dream" :lol:
Just Kiddin you know.
Gene;p="19611 Wrote:Dougy boy, why is it when you put up posts like this an Everly Brothers song come to mind? "All I Have To Do Is Dream" :lol:
Just Kiddin you know.

Actually, I was thinking of Randy "Macho Man" Savage and his Slim Jim! Smile
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