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How to Light a Charcoal BBQ

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When the sun is shining there is nothing better than enjoying a barbecue with friends and family. BBQs are all about relaxing, so you don’t want to spend all your time trying to get it lit. Follow our steps to quickly light your charcoal BBQ properly.

Step 1

The Lighter Fluid Method

The Lighter Fluid Method

Please note: when using lighter fluid, you will need to allow plenty of time for it to completely burn off before starting to cook to avoid it flavouring the food. If this is not feasible, you may prefer to use a chimney starter instead. Remember, never add lighter fluid after the BBQ has been lit; even warm coals will cause lighter fluid to vaporise and can cause a nasty explosion. Pile the charcoal into the centre of the grill and pour a generous amount of lighter fluid over the entire pile, making sure each piece of charcoal is covered with lighter fluid. As soon as the coals are wet with fluid, close the bottle and put it aside safely, then immediately proceed to the lighting step. We recommend avoiding self-lighting charcoal as it contains additives that can leave a bad taste on your food.

Step 2

Light Newspaper

Light Newspaper

Place a sheet of newspaper over the charcoal and light the paper. The burning newspaper will ignite the lighter fluid evenly and the charcoal will start to burn. The BBQ is ready to use when the charcoal is covered in a light powdering of grey ash. Spread the charcoal out evenly with a suitable BBQ tool, to produce an even heat.

Step 3

The Chimney Starter Method

The Chimney Starter Method

An alternative to using lighter fluid is to use a chimney starter. Loosely roll a few sheets of newspaper into a doughnut shape and place in the bottom compartment of the chimney starter.

Step 4

Fill Chimney Starter

Fill Chimney Starter

Fill the chimney starter with charcoal up to 2 inches from the top.

Step 5

Light Newspaper

Light Newspaper

Light the newspaper from all sides through the slots at the bottom of the chimney.

Step 6

Place Coals into BBQ

Place Coals into BBQ

Allow the coals to burn in the chimney starter for at least 20 minutes until they are covered in a light powdering of grey ash. Pour the coals onto the coal grate and replace the cooking grate. Time to enjoy your BBQ!