Weber BBQ Chimney Starter

BBQ Chimney Starter
BBQ Chimney Starter

Lit BBQ in 10 minutes

The majority of regular BBQers who use charcoal for their BBQ prefer not to use chemicals near their food, such as lighter fluid and lighter blocks, so a good alternative that many of us use is a BBQ Chimney Starter, I have used various makes, but have found the slightly more expensive Weber model to be the best, and last the longest, the cheaper models, around £15 generally only last a BBQ season before rusting away. I’ve been using the above pictured chimney starter for a couple of years, and it’s just showing a little discolouration.

How to use

Simply fill the upper part of the chimney starter with your charcoal, and then place a screwed up ball of newspaper, a couple of sheets usually does the trick in the compartment under the charcoal, and set fire to the newspaper, the flames and heat are drawn up through the charcoal, usually you get a chimney full of blazing coals in around 10 minutes, which you can then tip into your BBQ. A tip from a member of the CountryWoodSmoke Facebook Group is to use a pirece of kitchen towel soaked in vegetable oil instead of the newspaper to get it started.

I find they get quite smoky until they are fully up and running, and that they are extremely hot to hold and tip, so use some thick welding gloves to protect your hands from sparks. Also ensure they are stood on something heatproof, I use a concrete slab.

Weber Chimney Starter available here

for around £35 plus postage. (N.B. they are sometimes on offer and a lot cheaper at garden centres that stock Weber).


Once up and running, the effect is like the afterburner on a jet engine, and great to cook on, simply place a grill grate over the top of the chimney, and yu can cook in some serious heat, ideal for skewers and thin steaks.

Here’s a few Afterburner Recipes to get you started.

Afterburner skewers


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