This is a question that many people have asked, and the answer is not so clear-cut. Some people say that charcoal is healthier to cook with because it gives food a smoky flavor, while others say propane is better because it is more consistent and doesn’t produce any smoke.
Let’s look at the facts and find out.
Charcoal: Food cooked on a charcoal grill can taste amazing. It gives steak, chicken, fish, and vegetables a smoky flavor that many people love. It produces this special flavor because when you cook with charcoal, it burns extremely hot for a very long time (even though regular charcoal briquettes don’t burn as hot as lump hardwood). This high temperature and long cooking times vaporize juices and fatty food, resulting in an appetizing appearance texture, and delicious flavor. These vapors also help form the dark “grill marks” we associate with properly cooked meat which can not be achieved on a propane grill. However, a Kamado grill can do.
However, there are some drawbacks to cooking with charcoal. The main one is that it can be difficult to get the temperature right. If it’s too hot, your food will cook too quickly on the outside while the inside remains undercooked. If it’s not hot enough, your food will take a long time to cook and could end up being dry and overcooked. In addition, because of all the smoke that is produced when cooking with charcoal, your food can end up tasting a bit like you’re eating at a barbeque – not always a bad thing, but not for everyone.
Propane: Propane grills are more consistent in their heat output than charcoal grills, and this can be an advantage, especially if you are cooking for a large group of people. With a propane grill, you can set the temperature, and it will stay at that level, unlike charcoal, which can go from really hot to not so hot very quickly. This makes it much easier to control the cooking process and more evenly cooked food.
Another big advantage of propane is that it doesn’t produce any smoke. This is good news if you don’t like the taste of smoked food or live in an area where there are restrictions on outdoor cooking because of the smoke.
The main disadvantage of using a propane grill is that it can be expensive to use over time. You need to refill tanks when their contents run out, and propane is usually more expensive than charcoal. There are also some safety concerns associated with propane. It’s very explosive if you don’t follow the directions carefully, and it may take time for you to get used to using a propane grill properly so that you don’t have any accidents.
So which one should I use?
First of all, charcoal or propane comes down to personal preference. If you love grilled food but can’t stand the taste of smoked meat, then a propane grill might be better for you because it won’t add this flavor to your food. If you prefer simplicity in how you do things and don’t want to deal with temperature fluctuations, a propane grill might also be better. If you like the smoky flavor of charcoal grill food or are willing to put in some time to learn how to control your fire, then charcoal may be your best option.
Robber Alegria is an experienced home cook and likes to share his knowledge here on the Linwood Grill website and hopes that you can benefit from his experience and tips. You can read more about him here