Pinterest Code: 119e79e8f3c084b84b2e03abae041ed4

How to Use Wood Chunks for Smoking and Grilling?


Table of Contents

There are all sorts of ways that you can cook on a smoker or grill. This includes using wood chips for smoking or grilling. However, you may not be sure the best way to go about using them in order to make a tasty meal. If you are considering using wood chips the next time you grill or smoke something, here is the wood chunks knowledge and digital food thermometer you need to know to help you grill and smoke better.

Why Use Wood Chunks in Smoking or Grilling?

There are several reasons why you may want to use wood chunks in smoking or grilling. The wood chunks not only can use as the fuel to provide the heat but also can produce a smoky flavor for the food.  And it has a suitable size to burn longer so that you needn’t refuel as often. You know that, opening the smoker will ley out the smoke and heat. It will affect smoking or grilling efficiency.

Chunks vs. Chips vs. Logs

When it comes time to purchase wood for smoking or grilling, you will find that you have a lot of different options. Among them are chunks, chips and logs.

This is what you need to know about each one:


Wood chunks are commonly used among those that smoke or grill. They are about the size of your fist, and there are quite a few different types to choose from such as cherry wood chunks. Unfortunately, they can take a while to ignite fully. If you are a novice at using wood chunks to grill, you may become frustrated and think that you are doing something wrong. However, this is completely normal. They do burn for about a lot longer than wood chips, which is about an hour.


This type of wood can be in the form of either scraps or shavings. When it comes time to purchase the best wood chips for smoking, it really is just a matter of preference. Wood chips do ignite pretty quickly. Unfortunately, they also tend to burn out rather fast. One of the advantages to using wood chips is that they are very easy to find either online or in-store.


You most likely will not use a log when you are using a smoker or grill. They are just too big to adequately fit into space. If you plan on cooking over a campfire or in an offset smoker, then you might want to use them. It will take a while for them to fully ignite, and they do emit a lot of smoke.

wood trunk for smoking

How to Use Wood Chunks With a Charcoal Grill?

In order to get the best result when using a charcoal grill, it is important that you use wood chunks correctly. You will first need to decide whether or not you are going to use direct or indirect heat.

Direct heat involves cooking the food right over the heat. Hot dogs, hamburgers, vegetables and seafood can be all cooked over direct heat.

Indirect heat involves cooking food right next to the heat. This is a good option for food that needs to be cooked for a long time. Items like large cuts of meat and baked potatoes are best cooked indirectly.

Many people use a combination of both direct and indirect heat when using a charcoal grill. If you want to use wood chunks, you will need to place about five chunks on top of the charcoal.

No matter how you choose to cook your food, you need to make sure that it is thoroughly cooked. The best way to do so is to use meat thermometer to ensure whether your food is cooked completely or not. You cannot rely on the way that your food looks in order to determine whether or not it is time to remove your food from the grill.

ThermoPro Instant Read meat thermometer

How to Use Wood Chunks With a Gas Grill?

It is not that difficult to use wood chunks when you are using a gas grill. You will simply need to place three wood chunks into each burner box, and then turn the burners on high. Replace the chunks as needed.

How to Use Wood Chunks in an Electric or Gas Smoker?

Electric and gas smokers will leave you with food that has a smokey flavor. By adding wood chunks, it will really step it up a notch. Here is how to use wood chunks in an electric or gas smoker in order to get the best result:

  1. Preheat the smoker to the desired temperature.
  2. Place two wood chunks over the smoker’s fuel pan.
  3. Let the smoker do the rest of the work.

Additional Tips:

1. How Many Wood Chunks Do You Need?

The number of wood chunks you need will vary greatly depending on how long you will be cooking. If you want a very smoky flavor, you should add fresh chunks about every 30 minutes. If you just want a little bit of smokiness, you will only need to add new wood chunks every hour.

2. Should You Soak Your Wood Chunks?

You will find a lot of information on the internet about soaking your wood chunks. Some cooks recommend it while others do not. By soaking them, they will last longer. However, it will take them longer to ignite. You may also have difficulties being able to tell if they are actually ignited because they will not produce smoke until all of the moisture is gone. If you do decide that you want to soak your wood chunks, you will need to soak them for about 30 minutes before you start cooking.

3. How to Select Wood for Your Smoker?

You will probably be inundated by all of the options available when it comes to wood chunks. They should provide a pleasant flavor and not produce a foul-smelling smoke. Hardwoods are the best option. Wood chunks tend to come in three options: mild woods, medium woods and heavy woods. Here is what you need to know about each of them:

Mild Wood Chunks: These include apple, cherry and alder woods. They leave behind a somewhat fruity flavor. Mild wood chunks are best used with fish and chicken.

Medium Wood Chunks: These types of wood chunks consist of oak or hickory.

The best oak for smoking will provide a distinct flavor. It is not as overpowering as hickory can be. Medium wood chunks are best used with beef and pork or large cuts of meat.

Heavy Wood Chunks: The most popular heavy wood chunks are mesquite. It leaves behind a very smoky flavor that is not suitable for all meats. It is best for very large cuts of meat like briskets.

As you can see, there are a wide variety of different wood chunks to choose from. In order to find the best option for you, it may be necessary to try smoking different types of foods with a variety of different wood chunks. You might find that certain wood chunks provide too little or too much smokiness.

4. When to Add the Wood Chips or Chunks?

You should add wood chips or chunks before you start cooking. Keep in mind that you may need to replace them throughout the cooking process. If they stop smoking, then it is time to add new ones.


In conclusion, wood chunks will provide a smoky flavor to your food that will not occur by smoking or grilling alone. In order to have perfectly cooked food, you can use the ThermoPro Meat Thermometer. It will allow you to easily check the internal temperature of your food. The end result will be perfectly cooked food that you can enjoy with your loved ones.

Recommend Reading


Shopping Cart