Cooking on a charcoal grill is an age-old tradition that is still popular today. Charcoal grills are perfect for barbecuing, grilling, and smoking a wide variety of foods. The intense heat and smoky flavor that comes from cooking with charcoal is unique and adds a delicious taste to any meal. With so many options available, it can be difficult to decide what to cook on a charcoal grill. This guide will help you explore the different possibilities and find the perfect recipes for your next cookout.

What To Cook On Charcoal Grill

Cooking on a charcoal grill is an excellent way to add a smoky flavor to your favorite dishes. Grilling is a great way to cook a variety of foods, from steaks and burgers to vegetables and fish. To get the best results, use the right type of charcoal and make sure the fire is hot enough. Start by preheating the charcoal grill for 15-20 minutes and use a brush or spatula to spread the charcoal evenly. Place the food directly on the grill or in a foil pouch to keep the juices and flavors inside. When the food is cooked, let it rest for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy the smoky flavor of your favorite dishes cooked on the charcoal grill.

Benefits of Charcoal Grilling

Cooking with a charcoal grill is an art form that can be perfected over time. Charcoal grills offer a unique flavor that can’t be replicated with other cooking methods. Not only that, but charcoal grilling has a variety of benefits that make it a great way to cook your favorite foods. Here are some of the top benefits of charcoal grilling.

1. Flavor: Charcoal grilling imparts a unique smoky flavor that can’t be achieved with other cooking methods. The smokiness is due to the charcoal, which puts off smoke as it cooks. This adds a distinctive flavor to whatever you’re grilling.

2. Low Temperature Cooking: Charcoal grills don’t get as hot as gas grills, so they’re perfect for cooking at lower temperatures. This makes them great for foods that require slow cooking, like ribs or pulled pork. It also makes them great for cooking delicate foods, like fish and vegetables.

3. Cost: Charcoal grills are typically less expensive than gas grills, making them a great option for budget-minded cooks. This makes them a great choice for those just starting out in the world of grilling.

What To Cook On Charcoal Grill: 10 Tasty Options!

4. Portability: Charcoal grills are much smaller and lighter than gas grills, making them easy to transport. This makes them perfect for camping trips and tailgating parties.

5. Versatility: Charcoal grills can be used to cook a wide variety of foods. From burgers and hotdogs to steaks and veggies, a charcoal grill can handle any type of food.

Overall, charcoal grilling is a great way to cook your favorite foods. With its unique flavor, low temperature cooking, cost effectiveness, portability, and versatility, it’s no wonder why charcoal grilling is so popular. So, the next time you’re looking for a way to cook your food, consider using a charcoal grill!

Essential Tools for Charcoal Grilling

Summer is here and there’s nothing like a day of charcoal grilling. But before you fire up the grill, you need to make sure you have all the essential tools for charcoal grilling. From tongs and thermometers to brushes and grates, here’s a look at the must-have items you need to get the most out of your charcoal grill.

1. Tongs: A good pair of tongs is essential for flipping and transferring food to and from the grill. Long-handled tongs are best since they keep you at a safe distance from the heat.

2. Grilling Brush: A grill brush is great for scrubbing down your grill grates. A brush with stainless steel bristles is the best option, as it won’t rust and will last longer.

3. Grill Grates: A quality set of grill grates is key for a successful charcoal grill. Look for grates made from cast iron or stainless steel, as they provide the best heat distribution and retain heat better than other materials.

4. Charcoal Chimney Starter: A charcoal chimney starter is a must for a charcoal grill. It’s an easy and efficient way to get your charcoal burning without the use of lighter fluid.

What To Cook On Charcoal Grill: 10 Tasty Options!

5. Thermometer: A thermometer is a great tool to have on hand when you’re grilling. It allows you to monitor the internal temperature of your food, ensuring it is cooked to perfection.

6. Spatula: A good spatula is essential for flipping burgers, hot dogs, and more. Look for one with a thick handle and a wide flat surface to make flipping easier.

7. Grill Basket: Grill baskets are great for grilling delicate items such as fish and vegetables. They’re also great for making kebabs.

8. Rotisserie: A rotisserie is great for slow roasting larger pieces of meat. It’s a great way to cook a whole chicken or a large roast.

Having the right tools on hand will make your charcoal grilling experience a success. Make sure to stock up on these essential tools before your next grilling session!

Popular Foods to Grill on Charcoal

Nothing quite compares to the smoky, savory flavor of food cooked over charcoal. Whether you’re a backyard grilling enthusiast or a professional pitmaster, there’s something special about enjoying a meal cooked on a charcoal grill.

From juicy burgers and succulent steaks to fresh-off-the-grill veggies and even desserts, there’s a lot you can cook on a charcoal grill. To help you get started, here are some of the most popular foods to cook on a charcoal grill.

What To Cook On Charcoal Grill: 10 Tasty Options!


One of the most popular dishes to cook on a charcoal grill is the classic hamburger. Thanks to its combination of smoky flavor and juicy texture, burgers cooked on a charcoal grill are simply unbeatable. To get the most out of your burgers, opt for higher-fat beef that holds onto its moisture and flavor.


Steaks are another popular dish to cook on a charcoal grill. For the best results, opt for high-quality cuts of steak such as ribeye, strip loin, or filet mignon. When grilling steak, it’s best to use direct heat, meaning the steak is cooked directly over the coals. This helps to seal in the steak’s natural juices and gives it a delicious char-grilled flavor.


Chicken is another great option for grilling on charcoal. For the juiciest and most flavorful chicken, opt for dark meat cuts with the skin on. To cook your chicken, use the indirect method, where the chicken is placed away from the coals. This will help to keep the chicken’s juices locked in, ensuring it’s nice and moist when it comes off the grill.


Seafood is another great option for the charcoal grill. Grilled shrimp, salmon, and scallops are all delicious when cooked on a charcoal grill. Quick-cooking seafood like shrimp is best cooked over direct heat, while thicker cuts such as salmon and scallops should be cooked over indirect heat.


Grilled vegetables are a great way to add smoky flavor to your meal. Popular vegetables to cook on a charcoal grill include squash, zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, and onions. To get the most out of your grilled vegetables, brush them with a bit of oil and season with salt and pepper before grilling.


Yes, you can even cook dessert on a charcoal grill! Popular choices include grilled fruit, such as pineapple, peaches, and apples. These can be served on their own or with a scoop of ice cream for a truly decadent treat.

Grilling on a charcoal grill is a great way to add flavor and flair to your cooking. From juicy burgers to decadent desserts, there’s a lot you can cook on a charcoal grill. So, fire up the coals and get grilling!



In conclusion, cooking on a charcoal grill is a great way to add flavor to your food. With a variety of options for cooking, including burgers, steaks, vegetables, and even pizzas, there is something for everyone. There are a few tips to keep in mind when cooking on a charcoal grill, such as using indirect heat and controlling the temperature. Additionally, charcoal grills are relatively easy to use and maintain, making them a great choice for outdoor cooking.