How To Charcoal Grill Pizza? : How To Charcoal Grill Pizza?

How to Charcoal Grill Pizza?

Key Takeaways

  • One method for charcoal grilling pizza is to build a split fire, with charcoal spread evenly on one side of the grill for indirect heat.
  • Using a pizza stone is a more traditional approach that helps distribute heat evenly and create a crisp crust.
  • Grilling the pizza directly on the grates is a quick and easy method, but requires monitoring to avoid burning the crust.

Grilling pizza on a charcoal grill can be a delightful and delicious experience. The combination of smoky flavors and a lightly charred crust adds a unique touch to this beloved dish. If you’re wondering how to charcoal grill pizza, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll explore different methods, techniques, and tips to help you achieve the perfect charcoal-grilled pizza.

Method 1: Building a Split Fire

One of the popular methods for charcoal grilling pizza involves building a split fire. Start by lighting the charcoal in a chimney starter and let it burn until the coals become hot and ashy. Once ready, spread the charcoal evenly on one side of the grill, leaving an open space in the middle. This arrangement allows for indirect heat, which helps prevent the crust from burning.

Method 2: Using a Pizza Stone

If you prefer a more traditional approach, using a pizza stone is a great option. Preheat the grill with the pizza stone inside to ensure it gets hot. Once the stone is heated, carefully place the prepared pizza dough directly onto the stone. The stone helps distribute heat evenly and creates a crisp crust. Remember to rotate the pizza occasionally to ensure even cooking.

Method 3: Grilling Directly on the Grates

If you’re looking for a quick and easy method, grilling the pizza directly on the grates can be a good choice. Ensure the grates are clean and well-oiled to prevent sticking. Place the prepared pizza dough directly on the grates and cook for a few minutes on each side until lightly charred. Keep an eye on the crust to avoid burning, and adjust the heat as needed.

Method 4: Using Grill Inserts or Accessories

There are various grill inserts and accessories available on the market that can enhance your charcoal-grilled pizza experience. For example, the KettlePizza insert allows for wood-fired pizza, giving it an authentic flavor. The PizzaQue Deluxe Kettle Grill Kit, on the other hand, provides a complete set of tools, including a grill insert, pizza stone, pizza peel, and charcoal fence.

Tips for Charcoal Grilling Pizza

Now that we’ve explored different methods, let’s dive into some tips that can help you achieve excellent results when charcoal grilling pizza:

  1. Prepare the dough: Whether you’re making your own dough or using store-bought, make sure it’s properly rested and at the right consistency for grilling.
  2. Heat and clean the grill: Preheat the grill and clean the grates before placing the pizza on them. This ensures even heat distribution and prevents sticking.
  3. Monitor the crust: Keep a close eye on the crust to avoid burning. Rotate the pizza occasionally to ensure even cooking.
  4. Choose the right toppings: Opt for toppings that can withstand the high heat of the grill, such as veggies, meats, and cheeses that melt well.
  5. Experiment with flavors: Grilling pizza opens up a world of flavor possibilities. Consider adding herbs, spices, or even a drizzle of balsamic glaze to elevate the taste.
  6. Finish in the oven if needed: If the bottom of the crust is done baking before the toppings are ready, you can transfer the pizza to a preheated oven to finish baking.


Grilling pizza on a charcoal grill can be a fun and rewarding cooking technique. Whether you choose to build a split fire, use a pizza stone, grill directly on the grates, or utilize grill inserts, the key is to experiment and find the method that works best for you. With the right techniques and tips in mind, you’ll be able to enjoy delicious charcoal-grilled pizza with a smoky, lightly charred crust.


Q: What are the benefits of using a charcoal grill for pizza?

Using a charcoal grill for pizza offers several benefits. The charcoal imparts a unique smoky flavor to the pizza, enhancing its taste. The high heat of the charcoal grill allows for a crispy crust and perfectly melted toppings. Additionally, grilling pizza on charcoal provides a fun and interactive cooking experience.

Q: What equipment and tools do I need for charcoal grilling pizza?

To charcoal grill pizza, you will need a charcoal grill, charcoal briquettes, lighter fluid or chimney starter, a pizza stone or pizza steel, a pizza peel, and long tongs. These tools ensure proper heat distribution and ease of handling while grilling the pizza.

Q: How do I preheat a charcoal grill for grilling pizza?

Preheating the charcoal grill is essential for successful pizza grilling. After arranging the charcoal in a mound or two-zone method, light it using a chimney starter or lighter fluid. Allow the charcoal to burn until it turns gray and is covered with white ash. This process usually takes around 20-30 minutes.

Q: What are the best practices for grilling pizza on a charcoal grill?

To grill pizza on a charcoal grill, shape and stretch the dough, add desired toppings and sauces, and carefully place the pizza on a preheated pizza stone or pizza steel. Close the grill lid and cook the pizza using direct or indirect heat, depending on the desired level of char and flavor. Monitor and rotate the pizza occasionally for even cooking.

Q: How can I achieve the perfect grilled pizza crust?

A properly cooked pizza crust should be crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. To achieve this, make sure the grill is properly preheated, use high-quality dough, and cook the pizza on high heat. Additionally, monitor the cooking time and adjust it according to your desired level of crispiness.

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