How Long To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill

Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in this post. At no cost to you, I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

How Long To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill

How Long To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill? The amount of time wood chips need to soak is mostly determined by their size. Chips smaller than a quarter should be soaked for no more than 8 to 12 hours, while you should soak bigger chips for 24 hours. You may also cut the soaking time in half for rapid cooking. Soak wood chips for no more than 24 hours for optimal effects.

Grilling With Wood Chips Has Its Advantages To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill

You will enhance the authenticity of your BBQ by using genuine wood on the grill. Whatever you’re cooking will be infused with a true-to-life smoky taste that’s tough to duplicate.

You may also try out other taste combinations by using wood chips. Because they’re made from various woods (see Types of Wood Chips below), you may pick the one that goes best with your chosen components.

Aside from the taste and adaptability, there’s something incredibly rewarding about cooking with genuine wood. In a society where tradition has been lost for the sake of convenience, grilling over an open flame allows us to reconnect with our ancestors.

Chunks Vs. Chips To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill

Let’s look at our alternatives before we get into the specifics of how long to soak wood chips before grilling.

Wood chunks are complete pieces of hardwood that may be put straight on the coals to enhance the flavor of your grilled meats and veggies. They take a very long time to burn down because of their size, ideal for low-and-slow culinary applications like smoking. On a similar point, bigger components like entire rib racks and beer can chicken work well in them.

Meanwhile, wood chips are made up of smaller fragments. The chips used for grilling are generally remnants left behind after trees or bigger pieces of wood have been treated. They burn faster than wood pieces, so they’re a better choice if you’re only going to grill for a few minutes. If you’re making burgers or hot dogs, wood chips are a great option.

Keep in mind that wood chunks are incompatible with many gas and electric smokers, leaving wood chips as the sole alternative. If you own one of these grills, make sure to read the instructions before attempting to cook with wood.

Why Should Wood Chips Be Soaked

Because wood burns slower when wet, soaking the chips before putting them on the grill will extend their life. As the moist wood smolders and ignites, a constant stream of smoke will emerge.

They’ll almost certainly catch fire if you don’t soak the chips beforehand. As a result, they may burn out before providing any significant smoke taste. Although you can always add extra chips, soaking them beforehand might save you a lot of time and money.

Examine the smoke that is formed after you’ve placed the chips on the grill. If it’s white, it signifies the wood is saturated with water vapor. Smoke from dry wood will have a blue hue to it. The presence of a white cloud indicates that the wood chips have been soaked for the required time.

Wood Chips Come In A Variety Of Shapes And Sizes To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill

As previously said, you should always use wood with a taste profile that complements the components you’ve chosen. Alder, cherry, and apple are light woods with a subtle smoky taste and a sense of sweetness. They’re great for chicken breasts or fish with a slice of firm meat.

If you can locate pear or peach wood, try it when cooking poultry or veggies. These have a mild, almost flowery flavor that complements lighter fare. On the intensity scale, maple and pecan are a step up. Each has a distinct flavor that meats with more intense flavors might overpower. These go well with pork, chicken thighs, and fish.

Use medium-intensity woods like oak or hickory to take things up a notch. They’ll offer smoked ribs and pig butt a well-rounded smoky taste because they’re bold and very aromatic.

You can experiment with lump hardwood charcoal and see if you like it. The fire starts quickly, doesn’t emit a bad-tasting smoke, and burns at a high temperature. 

As far as the type of lump charcoal goes, do not be concerned with the type of hardwood it originates from. Instead, use generic hardwood lump charcoal such as Cowboy, Woodstock, or Royal Oak.

The synthetic chemicals added to briquettes are too much for you, so stay away from them. Briquettes are definitely the more convenient way to go if you want to do barbecue or other types of smoking over charcoal since they burn at a consistent temperature for an extended period of time. When it comes to briquettes, choose Kingsford.

Wood chips To Grill With Charcoal And Wood Chips

Once you have figured out what type of charcoal you want to use, you can start thinking about how to enhance the smoky flavor of your food. Wood chips are the best way to do this.

A wood chip is a small piece of seasoned hardwood. With a wooden chip box, you can use wood chips in your barrel smoker, eclectic smoker, or kettle grill to add smoky flavor. A barrel smoker or kettle grill can be started with a pile of hot charcoal and a layer of wood chips on top. When charcoal slowly burns wood chips, it produces a pleasant, clean smoke.

Woodchips – Soak Or Not Soak For Gas Grill

There is a debate about whether or not wood chips need to be soaked in water before being used. According to my experiments as well as the opinions of chefs and barbecue experts, soaking doesn’t make much difference.

Smoking the chips may appear to generate more smoke, but what you’re experiencing is more steam. Depending on what you are smoking, steam can have its own advantages; it can generate more moisture, which can counteract the drying effects of smoke and temperature. 

In order to prevent sausage casings from drying out too much, this can be beneficial. If you are worried about the meat drying out, place a water pan on the grill or in the smoker, as well as spraying it with vinegar or water occasionally. How Long To Soak Wood Chips For Gas Grill? 

There is often strong opinion about what sort of wood to smoke with, and also what cuts and types of meat work best with what type of smoke. Having said that, each type of hardwood has its own distinctive qualities. You should explore different options to see what works best for you. You can try smoking cherry and oak separately to see if you can find a difference and if you have a favorite.


Put wood chips in a sealed container to keep mice and other rodents away. If you have to store them in a garage or woodshed, keep the container away from moist places since this can encourage mold growth. Also, don’t be tempted to pour fresh batches on top of old ones when you buy new ones. You should rotate your supply to guarantee that the oldest is used first.