How to Use a Char-Griller Smoker

Things You'll Need

  • Cooking spray

  • Charcoal briquettes

  • Lighter fluid

  • Chimney starter

  • Newspaper

Smokers and grills aren't just for steak and chicken; experiment with grilled potatoes and vegetable kabobs. Before using a Char-Griller smoker for the first time, you'll need to cure it. Plan on curing it well before cooking your food, as the curing process takes over four hours. While the smoker is hot, keep young children and pets at a safe distance.

Curing the Smoker

Step 1

Spray cooking spray on all of the interior surfaces of the smoker. This includes the grates and the inside of the barrel and lid.

Step 2

Build a pile of charcoal briquettes in the bottom portion of the smoker. Pour lighter fluid on them and set them on fire in several different places. Let them burn until they turn from black to an ash-gray color.

Alternatively, use a chimney starter. Crumple several sheets of newspaper and insert them into the base of the chimney starter. Fill the device with briquettes and place it in the smoker. Ignite the paper and wait for the briquettes to burn. When they begin to turn ash-gray, transfer them out of the chimney starter into the bottom portion of the smoker.

Leave the lid off of the smoker during this process.

Step 3

Spread out the gray coals and close the lid of the smoker. Allow them to sit for about two hours. The smoker should be at about 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 4

Remove the lid of the smoker and spray only the grates with cooking spray again, not the entire interior. Close the lid and allow the smoker to cure for another two hours.

Using the Smoker

Step 1

Start a fire for grilling by piling coals in the smoker. Char-Griller recommends using about 50 to 60 briquettes.

Step 2

Saturate the coals with lighter fluid. Light them in several different places around the pile. Alternatively, you could use a chimney starter in the same manner as when you cured the smoker. Leave the lid off during this process.

Step 3

Wait for the coals to turn at least halfway ash-gray and then add your food to the grill. Close the lid while your food cooks.

Step 4

Spray cooking spray over the smoker's interior after use, while it is still warm.


Always clean out the completely cooled ash from the smoker after each use. This helps prevent rust. Experiment with different grilled foods, such as grilled meats, seafoods, vegetables and even tofu.


Never use gasoline to light a fire in the smoker. Do not allow the smoker to exceed 400 degrees Fahrenheit.