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Infrared vs. Charcoal Grill

Infrared vs charcoal grill

Welcome to our comparison on infrared vs. charcoal grill. The barbeque season is the next in line after Christmas when we talk about the favorite times of a year. There is nothing better in this world than a well-seared steak, beautiful weather and a group of people that you cherish and love.

For this, you need to have a good quality grill to cook all the recipes perfectly. There are various aspects to consider when buying a good quality grill. You must notice its size, fuel types, color, mobility, and everything. Some of the most common BBQ grills involve infrared, gas and charcoal.

Difference between infrared and charcoal grills

The most important aspect of the infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison is to understand their primary differences. First, let’s have a brief look at the infrared grills.

Infrared grills

Let’s assess the infrared grills in this infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison. The infrared grills use gas for starting up and then the integrated infrared technology comes into play. These grills have a tendency to heat up very quickly. In addition to that, if you want to cook your meat from inside out then this grill is the best option.

Infrared vs charcoal grill

Cooking inside out locks the moisture within the steak and the tastes come out very nice. This grill takes only about five minutes to get ready and start cooking. Most of the models are very easy to clean as well later on.

Charcoal grills

Now, let’s have a look at the charcoal grill in our infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison. First of all, these grills are very lightweight.

You can cook the tasty open-flame recipes with smoky flavors. It will give you a feeling like you are cooking on a campfire. Most of these grills use wood chips or briquettes for burning. For this reason, the flame gets very hot and becomes ideal for steak searing.

They also have a disadvantage. If you are feeding a large crowd then you have to replenish coal on an hourly basis, maybe even more often in windy conditions. This means that fuel consumption is high which will drive the costs high. In addition to that, you have to clean the ashes and grease after you are done barbequing your food for a party.

Which one is a healthier option?

Another integral part of this infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison is which one of these two is the healthiest option. When it comes to flavor the winner will always be charcoal over infrared. There is nothing better than that chary or smoky flavor in your steak. However, when we talk about the healthiness then too much of disappointment of most charcoal fans, infrared is the healthier option.

Infrared vs charcoal grill

When you cook on a charcoal grill, you are imbuing your meat with heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Both these molecules come from the fat that drips of the meat during the barbequing process.

These molecules bind to the smoke and carry towards skywards with it. The smoke then gets fused with the meat on top. Not both these molecules can develop cancer according to various medical researchers.

For this reason, these molecules are dangerous for health and ultimately the charcoal grilling becomes a less healthy option. On the other hand, infrared grilling cooks the food from inside out with the help of intense heat.

The grilling with the help of infrared technology is safe because these cooking appliances and equipment don’t have much power that they can alter or damage the DNA or protein in the meat. For this reason, the infrared grilling process is perfectly safe for consumption purposes.

Are infrared grills safe?

In this section of our infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison, we will shed some light on the safety aspects of infrared grilling. Grilling with an infrared grill is extremely close to cooking on open fire. These grills can produce a tremendous amount of heat energy to cook your meat in no time. These grills have a tendency to cook steaks, potatoes, or corn way faster than the rational or conventional charcoal grill.

Infrared grills use electromagnetic energy to cook food just like microwave ovens. Infrared is a type of light energy but it is not the part of the visible spectrum. Some people have raised questions on the safety of some of the latest models of infrared grills.

The higher forms of electromagnetic energy such as X-rays may pose risks associated with cancer. However, microwaves, barbeques, and infrared grills don’t have that much power to damage or alter the DNA structure or protein of the meat steak that you are trying to cook. For this reason, they are perfectly safe for grilling.

Healthy and safety concerns

There is no link between cancer and infrared cooking. Gary Zeman who is a certified professional health physicist from California has conducted a research on it. He is a spokesperson for Health Physics Society and he explained his findings in The Jamaica Gleaner 2008.

As per Zeman, the NRC or National Research Council backs the evidence as well to further substantiate this claim. Microwave or infrared cooking doesn’t contaminate the protein structure in any way.

Precautionary measure

Through infrared cooking is safe, you need to take some precautionary measures. Make sure not to use your infrared grill if its hinge, latch or seal is broken. Always use caution with infrared due to the involvement of high heat.

Infrared vs charcoal grill

Make sure not to burn yourself an also monitor your children when they are nearby. Don’t try and fix a broken infrared grill or microwave on your own. Some of the internal parts can cause electric shock even if you have unplugged the appliance.


The end result of this infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison is that the flavor of charcoaling your food is something that is out of this world. A charcoal grill can only produce such a flavor. When it comes to flavor there is nothing better than a charcoal grill but in terms of healthiness, infrared takes the lead.

In this post about infrared vs. charcoal grill, we have also debunked the myth that infrared cause cancer. It doesn’t cause cancer because the amount of radiation involved in it is not that much to alter the protein structure of the meat you are grilling on it.

We hope that you have found our infrared vs. charcoal grill comparison post very informative. For any questions or suggestions, you can leave your comment in the section below.

Happy Grillin’!

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