What’s the best way to start the fire in my wood-burning smoker?

Use the old tee-pee method with kindling. Put two balled-up sheets of newspaper in the firebox and then stack up kindling (1/4 to 1/2 inch diameter x 6 inches long) in a tee-pee shape over the newspaper, smaller stuff first then bigger pieces. Light the newspaper and keep the fire going with progressively bigger pieces of wood until you have some nice coals and can put on your logs.

For those without fire building skills, a propane gas burner works well for lighting fires in your smoker. You can use all kinds of burners from the small soldering torches to weed-burners. Safety first here though.

Some people put an electric charcoal lighter rod into the kindling pile and when the rod is red hot and the wood smoldering, blow on it to get a flame. Remove the electric rod when the fire is going well.

Paraffin fire starters are used by some folks. They can buy them in a camping supply store or make your own.

Read “Three Sure-fire Fire-Starting Methods” on our Wisconsin firewood blog.