BBQ Wood Chips Vs. Charcoal - A Barbeque Smoking Comparison
Most barbeque enthusiasts agree that the best type of fuel for a bbq grill is wood chips, either seasoned or plain. Charcoal takes much longer to ignite and also causes much smoke and ash to go up into the atmosphere making it unhealthy to eat. When you are grilling with charcoal you are causing particulate matter and ash to come into direct contact with your food. This is not only unsightly but can also pose a health risk if the ash becomes lodged in your throat and lungs.
If you want to smoke your meat without emitting as much smoke and ash then a good alternative to using charcoal is using propane gas for your barbeque. Propane has no fire danger, it is much cleaner burning than wood chips and is much easier to control and monitor. Another advantage is that you can use wood chips for certain types of recipes like a barbeque pork chop or other juicy cuts of meat, this way you can use the chips for flavoring instead of relying on charcoal. However wood chips are a bit more expensive than propane, so if you are grilling a lot of meat at once then using charcoal may be your best bet.
In closing I personally prefer wood chips because of all the advantages and very few disadvantages. If you are going to use charcoal for your next barbeque, I would suggest looking for a good brand of wood chips like Franking Smokey Mountain or Brinkmann Apple Bottoms. I have been using these products for years and they make smoking even the most challenging kinds of meat a snap. Also keep in mind that your family will love you more for grilling with wood and that after you have cooked your meat on the barbeque for the right amount of time, you will not have to worry about it getting smokey again.