Your Online Outdoor Cooking Specialist
1300 914 129
WARNING!! Don't Buy a BBQ until you've read this.. The 7 Most Costly Mistakes People Make When Buying a BBQ
Simply enter your name and email to receive your Free Report

BBQ Grilling and Smoking - Which Woods To Use


Wood chips, wood chunks, wood dust or pellets can all be used on your BBQ to give your food that lovely smokey flavour. They are most commonly used on a charcoal BBQ but can be used on gas BBQs also.


Natural charcoal does not impart flavour to your food, it's the addition of wood that does that. Dried hardwoods including fruit and nut woods are best for smoking. Use good quality wood just like you use good quality herbs and spices on your food.


Do not use wood that has bark on it as it will give your food a bitter flavour. Since bark is a tree's protection, it often contains mold, insect bodies and dung and other contaminants.


It's important to know where your wood comes from. If you get off-cuts from your local woodworking shop make sure that the wood has not been treated, has no traces of oil used to lubricate saws or been swept from the floor. Cheaper is not always better. Choosing your wood that has been harvested from sustainable resources is good for the environment.


If you harvest your own wood from a fallen tree, you will need to use a hand saw (chainsaws are lubricated with oil) and be sure you remove the bark.


The type of wood you use will make a huge difference. As a guideline, fruit woods are mild and nut woods produce a strong flavour. Our chart below shows you the most commonly used smoking woods for the BBQ. However be adventurous. You can create amazing flavours by mixing different woods together.


  

Wood

Flavour

Comments

Red Meat

Pork

Poultry

Fish

Alder

Sweet, musky light flavour

Works very well with salmon and turkey

 

X

X

X

Apple

Slightly sweet, fruity and strong smoke flavour

Very good with pork and game birds due to sweetness

 

X

 

 

Beech

Mild smokiness with a slight nutty flavour to it

Good all round, especially with game birds and salmon

XX

X

X

XX

Cherry

Cherry adds a sweet fruity flavour, with a mild smokiness

Adds a pink tinge to meats, turns skin of poultry dark brown

X

X

XX

X

Hickory

Sweet, strong with a bacon like flavour

Hickory chips should be soaked for 2 hours in water to remove bitterness. Fantastic with ribs

X

XX

XX

XX

Maple

Mild smoke flavour with a subtle sweetness

Good for game, absolutely fantastic with pork roast

X

XX

X

 

Oak

Versatile smoking wood that is mild and has no aftertaste

Must have for brisket

XX

XX

XX

X

Whiskey Oak

Strong smoke flavour, similar to Oak but with a malty taste

Fantastic with venison, game and poultry

XX

X

X

X

 
WARNING!! Don't Buy a BBQ until you've read this.. The 7 Most Costly Mistakes People Make When Buying a BBQ
Simply enter your name and email to receive your Free Report