Tips from the Pros: Creating a Charcoal Fueled Broiler

March 12, 2014

Recently I was making a batch of grilled French onion soup (be sure to check out the recipe tomorrow!) and was looking for a way to get the cheese on top all nice and bubbly.

Now normally I’d use the broiler in my oven to do this, but since this is and not, I set out to replicate the overhead heat of the broiler within a grill.

Charcoal Broiler

Creating a Charcoal Broiler


For the heat, I prepare one chimney starter full of charcoal and once it was fully ashed over I poured the coals in to a disposable aluminum half pan.

I then placed the soup (or whatever you want to brown such as garlic cheese bread) on the grills main grate, placed a round wire pan grate with collapsible legs above the soup and set the aluminum half pan on the wire pan grate.


Broiling on the Grill

Turning the Grill into a Broiler

Broiling on the Grill

Turning the Grill into a Broiler


After the makeshift broiler was assembled I put the lid on the grill and let the soup broil for approximately 10 minutes, checking every few minutes to make sure the cheese was melting and browning evenly.

After it’s done browning, carefully remove the pan of coals, the wire expansion rack, and the soup.

Grilled Broiling

Grill Broiled French Onion Soup

While my method took a little longer than it would in an oven (I think part of this was due to the fact that it was below freezing outside and the grill wasn’t maintaining heat the same way an insulated indoor oven would), the result was exactly what I was looking for.  Plus it’s something that’d definitely impress folks at your next outdoor event!


- Clint Cantwell, Editor

Related Topics: Bbq Advice | Bbq Tips | Broiling On The Grill | Charcoal Broiler | Editor's Picks | Grilling Advice | Grilling Tips | How To Make A Charcoal Broiler | Tips From The Pros | Using A Grill As A Broiler

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