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Jun 3, 2006 04:21 PM

Need small indoor charcoal grill.

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I am looking for a small basic charcoal grill to use on my stovetop. Picture a big coffee can (big grocery store style), with a small grate on it. I just want to be able to grill things easily indoors.Little chicken on skewers and things like that. I want the nice chargrilled flavor but don't have room outside for whole barbeque set-up. Thanks in advance....Pepper

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  1. I've never heard of anyone using charcoal indoors. I think it would be a very bad idea.

    12 Replies
    1. re: Bobfrmia

      Having just checked my Kingsford bag, it says "Using charcoal indoors can kill you. Charcoal gives off carbon monoxide."
      Like I thought, bad idea.

      1. re: Bobfrmia

        So much for indoor Kushiyaki! Thanks...I found a small charcoal grill that will fit on my balcony...outside. Believe it or not, I have had worse ideas! ;) Thanks. Pepper

        1. re: Pepper

          I can see where you got that idea. I once had a little grill similar to what you have mentioned. It took a sterno can and you basically cooked the food beforehand and finished it on the 'grill'. From the looks of it it looked like you could use it with a single briquet of charcoal but obviously no. I'd check some Japanese import stores. They might have electric or gas table top grills like you are looking for.

          1. re: Pepper

            Yep, people do die every year trying to use (usually for heat) charcoal grills indoors. BUT there is an alternative: stovetop grill pans! They are these heavy pans with ridges inside--you get them very, very hot, then drop on your chicken or asparagus or whatnot, and you'll get lovely grill marks and a grill-ish flavor, with no messy briquettes or CO2. try one! Only key is to make sure pan is VERY hot (as in heat empty over a medium flame for at least 5 minutes) before you put in the food.

            1. re: dixieday

              the only problem with those griddles are that every time you use them your ceiling needs repainting.

            2. re: Pepper

              Make sure you check on fire regulations when using a grill on a balcony. Many years ago when I was a teen and had just got my first apartment I had a small hibachi on my balcony. A neighbor saw the smoke from the grill and called the fire dept. I got a $500 fine.

              1. re: biltong

                Nice neighbor. I hope you didn't share.

                1. re: chileheadmike

                  Old post, I know. But these regulations are there for safety reasons.

                  1. re: c oliver

                    Fortunately in NZ (where I live) no permit is required for small fires for cooking in non-rural areas (including the traditional Maori pit fire method called a hangi). We only get fines for setting large fires too close to the neighbours or in the countryside.

                    But speaking of regulations, sometimes they do go too far - in Orange County it illegal to have a 100% charcoal bbq in a restaurant - but you can use charcoal if it is sitting on top of a gas fire. The rule doesn't apply anywhere else in California and at least two Korean restaurants use exclusively charcoal BBQs.

                    1. re: c oliver

                      Why would anyone who lives in an apartment building think to grill indoors? Her poor upstairs neighbors.

                  2. re: biltong

                    I also watched the fire department put out a fire that started on an apartment balcony - caused by a small grill. It damaged that unit and the one above it.


                  3. re: Pepper

                    One word of warning about small charcoal grills. If it has metal or aluminum legs that are attached to the main body of the grill, the legs can get VERY HOT while in use. Never use it on a resin table and be very careful if you are using it on a wooden surface. If your balcony is made of wood, it would be wise to place something fireproof underneath.

              2. Just to reemphasize for future readers: a fatal idea. Worse even than trying to use your gas oven to heat your house during the winter....

                1. Rite-Aid sells these one-time use charcoal grill. It's simply aluminum pan with a few charcoal in them and a grate on top. I think I paid $3.99 for it. It's great for little balconies where a bbq setup is not possible. Again, do not use charcoal indoors.

                  1. n
                    Niki Rothman

                    Carbon monoxide is never your friend, it's very toxic. Do Not put a charcoal grill in your kitchen unless suicide, and possibly taking close relatives with you is the objective. Otherwise, get one of those Lodge Logic heavy cast iron flippable combo grill-griddle things. Mine was $35 in a kitchen out let - it covers 2 burners. You will get a nice char and grill marks, but sorry, no pronounced charcoal flavor or "smoky" flavor. You see them using them on food network all the time.

                    You don't say why you don't want to grill outside. Lately, I've developed a plan to put a hibachi out on my apartment's back landing where it's in the open air. I've been craving BBQ myself have never had a backyard - being a confirmed city person. So, I can tell you I've put a lot of thought into this very question lately. How to BBQ without killing myself or anybody in my building, or having to call the Fire department? Here's what I think: Hibachi on a cookie sheet, outside your back door on a level surface, at least 3 feet away from anything remotemly flammable, no children or pets anywhere near, fire extinguisher that you've practised with at the ready. I got one from QVC.COM that all you have to do is aim and shoot - no removing pins on a chain - idiot proof. Really, BBQ aside, EVERYONE needs an easy to use fire extinguisher right near their stove at all times anyway.

                    1. Unless you plan on cooking in your fireplace, indoor hibachis are a bad idea.