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Dutch Oven Cooking – How Many Briquettes DO I Use Anyway?

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There is always a question about how many briquettes to use when cooking with your Dutch oven.

The answer is that there are a number of ways to determine the correct number of ways to use when cooking with a Dutch oven.

THE MULTIPLICATION METHOD

The rule is: For a 350F oven, twice the number of the oven (6”, 8”, 12”, etc.) equals the number of briquettes to use. Then place 2/3 of the briquettes on the top and 1/3 on the bottom. For example; a   12 inch Dutch oven would require.

One note: This is for heavy moisture dishes like cakes and chili. For baking breads, decrease the number of briquettes, top and bottom to 12- 14 on top and 5 or 6 on the bottom.

Second note: Add one more briquette, top and bottom for an additional 25F increase in oven temperature. (Works the same way for a cooler oven too!)

THE LODGE METHOD

Lodge has a baking temperature chart they include with some of their Dutch oven products.

Oven Size 325F 350F 375F 400F 425F 450F
8” 15 -> 10 / 5 16 -> 11 / 5 17 -> 11 / 6 18 -> 12 / 6 19 -> 13 / 6 20 -> 14 / 6
10” 19 -> 13 / 6 21 -> 14 / 7 23 -> 16 / 7 25 -> 17 / 8 27 -> 18 / 9 29 -> 19 / 10
12” 23 -> 16 / 7 25 -> 17 / 8 27 -> 18 / 9 29 -> 19 / 10 31 -> 21 / 10 33 -> 22 / 11
14” 30 -> 20 / 10 32 -> 21 / 11 34 -> 22 / 12 36 -> 24 / 12 38 -> 25 / 13 40 -> 26 / 14
16” 34 -> 22 / 12 36 -> 24 / 12 38 -> 25 / 13 40 -> 27 / 13 42 -> 28 / 14 44 -> 30 / 14

[Total] -> [#Top] / [#Bottom] Indicates the number of briquettes to use.

Written by

Kevin Waite currently holds the position of BSA Charter Organization Representative in the Superstition District for Units 610, 6610, and 9610. Previous roles include Assistant Scoutmaster and Varsity Committee Member. In Spring of 2010 he served as the Assistant Senior Patrol Leader for the Boy Scout LST, and is currently serving as Senior Patrol Leader for the Fall Boy Scout LST. Kevin will also serve on WoodBadge staff this October.

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