Light charcoal without lighter fluid

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Lighting charcoal briquettes without lighter fluid is easy with this homemade Charcoal Chimney

Materials Needed

Lighting the Charcoal

  • Begin by filling your charcoal chimney to the top with charcoal
  • Loosely wad a sheet of newspaper and place it under the chimney in the center of your grill
  • CAREFULLY light the paper through the air holes (you may have to lift the chimney to get to the paper and light from underneath)
    • You may have to do this more than once, I had to do it twice for this tutorial.
  • Once the Charcoal begins to wait a while and it will flame on and ignite the rest of the coal in the chimney
  • When the charcoal in the chimney is ashen white (see Fig.5 ) then put on your oven mitts, be EXTREMELY CAREFUL and dump the coals into your grill
  • spread them evenly with your tongs
  • Barbecue away!


Fig 1. Placing the newspaper under the chimney
Fig 2.
Fig 3. Lightning the paper
Fig 4. It's working on it's own now
Fig 5. Ashen white coals ready to be dumped
Fig 6. Dumped coals spread out on grill


Fire is dangerous, always be careful. Do not touch hot surfaces or flames or smoke or steam. I am not responsible in any way if you burn yourself.

Usage notes

When I did this the first wad of newspaper burned out without sufficiently lighting the charcoal. I had to carefully put a second wadding of paper underneath the chimney and re-light. After a few minutes everything lit beautifully.


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Amazon's Related Products

  • (ASIN B00004U9VV
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  • (ASIN B000F64UKA

See Also

External Links