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How to make a beach grill

Updated on June 11, 2011

Island in the Gulf Of Mexico. This would be my second trip to the island and probably one the coolest places I’ve visited. If you are not a fan of rustic camp life on a tropical island, zero crowds ( and I mean zero) fishing, snorkeling, and cooking water side then you probably would like it. What’s cool about this trip was that I cooked 2 meals for 10 people on the beach grilling sans a modern BBQ grill. It was an awesome throwback to simple living, self reliance, and just a cool thing to do.

Here’s what you need


Wood chips (Water Soaked the 1-2 hours)

Grilling Grate

Bricks ( I found these lying around the island but stackable rocks would work)

What you do

1. I stacked the bricks in a box taking into account the size of the grate and cooking height from the coals. Higher box= slower cooking.

2. I dug out the center of the pit about 6-10 inches. I did this mostly to create more distance between the food and the coals. If I found more bricks I wouldn’t have done this. But I was hungry and wanted food now!!!

3. Ideally I would put some rocks in the bottom of the pit to create pockets of air for the fire and to retain heat but since I was cooking steak kabobs and not slow cooking I was ok with having the charcoal directly on the sand. Plus the natives were hungry. If you are making an earth oven rocks are a must.

4. Stack charcoal in a pile and light.

5. Once the coals are about 75% ashed over spread the coals and add the water soaked wood chips. Place the grate on the bricks. note the longer chips are soaked in water the longer and more smoke will be generated. More smoke= more flavor. This is caveman cooking at it’s best.I was going for a High Temp setting, 350F which is 3-4 sec count with my hand at about 4-6 inches above the grate. 3-4 seconds is the time I can hold my hand over the grate before I have to pull it away.

6. Add food.  Note the snapper we caught last night. Nothing better then cooking and eating what you catch.

7. The kabobs took about 10 minutes each to cook. Doneness was measured by feel. Rare= your chin, Meduim= the palm of your hand, and Well Done= the tip of your nose

You can cook pretty much anything this way since it’s essentially a charcoal grill. What’s cool is used need to haul a bunch of stuff to the beach. All I really brought was a a grate, bag of charcoal, some wood chips and some food. Everything else I found lying around. When you are done bury the coals, put the bricks back where you found them and pack the grate. You consumed everything else, almost zero to pack. So leave the giant grill at home and bring a surfboard instead. Now get out there, dig a hole and burn some meat.

How to Grill: The Complete Illustrated Book of Barbecue Techniques, A Barbecue Bible! Cookbook
How to Grill: The Complete Illustrated Book of Barbecue Techniques, A Barbecue Bible! Cookbook

This is an excellent book that not only tells you cool and interesting recipes but techniques to really open up how you grill



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    • kkgifts profile image

      kkgifts 7 years ago from Florence, SC