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Clean Burn - What's the consensus of how to do this?

Was reading through lots of old posts about doing a clean burn.  And the consensus as to how to do this is, well there doesn't seem to be a consensus.  Some folks go thermonuclear, no problem, others have had cracked fire rings and bases doing clean burns at lower temps.  I have a Rutland, so opinions as to how I should do a clean burn?  My egg isn't that filthy in my opinion, but SWMBO got a peek the other night and was like "uh, do you think you should clean the inside of that sometime?"
Gregg
Large BGE Owner since December of 2013!
Marietta, GA
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Comments

  • No consensus? That's odd, I thought there was consensus on everything around here.

    I've only done one or two clean burns with my egg. I've just let it rip for a couple of hours (make sure you take the dome thermo out). Can't say for sure if that led to the complete loss of my original gasket or a crack that I have in my fire box. I ran without any gasket at all for a year (recently replace with a rutland) and I have a warranty replacement for my firebox that I will take out of the box when the cracked one is no longer usable
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
  • paqmanpaqman Posts: 2,776
    Bake pizza

    ____________________
    Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage. •Niccolo Machiavelli
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 13,077
    If you searched and found no consensus, what makes you think you'll find one now? :confused: =)

    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!

                                                                …Unknown

    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

  • stemc33stemc33 Posts: 3,567
    You'll be surprised at what letting it burn at 500-600° for a few hours with a clean burning lump like Rockwood will do. 
    Steven
    Mini Max with Woo stone combo, LBGE, iGrill 2, Plate Setter, 
    two cotton pot holders to handle PS
    Banner, Wyoming
  • JohnH12JohnH12 Posts: 190
    stemc33 said:
    You'll be surprised at what letting it burn at 500-600° for a few hours with a clean burning lump like Rockwood will do. 
    So please surprise me.
    What will it do other than burn up some extra lump?
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 16,995
    Another like mind on a Pizza night. Afterward pull the PS and stone and let it go until it burns itself out. 600-700 will adequately clean up the ceramics. I don't do dedicated clean burns but, if I happen to be cooking at a higher temp and there's enough lump left then sure why not. Thermonuclear is not necessary to get it clean. 
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • sctdgsctdg Posts: 269
    I like that black coating inside my Egg . When you are smoking food it is to be expected . I could be wrong but I think that people that have smoke houses don't do anything to clean them that way .Except for the carbon that peels off up inside the dome I leave the black stuff inside ,adds to flavor .
  • jimithingjimithing Posts: 255
    JohnH12 said:
    stemc33 said:
    You'll be surprised at what letting it burn at 500-600° for a few hours with a clean burning lump like Rockwood will do. 
    So please surprise me.
    What will it do other than burn up some extra lump?
    It won't make it white like it was from the factory but it'll burn off all the extra crud.  I did this inadvertently the other night when I was making a bunch of pizzas.
    XL BGE
    Plano, TX
  • Sea2SkiSea2Ski Posts: 2,700
    I have done two over 5 years, both after several low and slow cooks and no higher temps between. Usually I try to mix in a high temp cook, but if not, I do as I say below and I am pleased with the results. 

    My method is a bit different than everyone else's:

    If possible, I scoop 2, 3 or 4 red solo cup of used lump *out of the egg* and set aside.  
    Use foil to get the loose stuff off. 
    Remove springy thing from back of dome thermometer. 
    Load up the egg with the cooking grate out of it with charcoal, mounding it in the center so it is above the firebox.  
    I light it and burn it at a temp of about 275-300 for a half to one hour with no top on the egg and not including the ramp up time. 
    Then ramp up to about 450-500 for about 30-45 mins. 
    This is where my method is different, I then ramp  to about 600 - 650, remove the dome thermometer,  and drop the saved solo cups of lump through the top vent. 30 mins  to 1 hr later,  I open the bottom vent just another 1/4 inch or so, and  then let it burn until it all burns out.  

    Will it be creamy white? In some places yes, but not all over. It will be much cleaner,  and I have no cracks anywhere that I can see. I think that is because I ramp the temp up gradually. 
    --------------------------------------------------
    Burning lump in Downingtown, PA or diesel in Cape May, NJ.
    ....just look for the smoke!
    Large and MiniMax
    --------------------------------------------------
  • LitLit Posts: 6,947
    If you care about getting it white you need to go 700 plus. I never do that anymore even with receipts for all my eggs. If you crack the base yeah you get a new one but the time involved is a pain and you will have to get another Rutland. You can go at 500 for 2-3 hours and at the end it won't be white but it will burn all the crud off and burn just as clean as if it was white. No reason to go crazy hot IMO.
  • Yeah I like the idea of letting it go for a while longer on pizza night.  Good enough.
    Gregg
    Large BGE Owner since December of 2013!
    Marietta, GA
  • RRPRRP Posts: 22,148
    Every time I do a burn out I open the bottom vent remove any dome restriction device. I've seen 800 on my small and 775 on my large. I do not time it - just let her rip and burn itself out. Works for me!
    L, M, S, &  Mini
    And oh yes...also a 17" BlackStone gas fired griddle! 
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
    Re- gasketing AMERICA one yard at a time!
  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,212
    ... My egg isn't that filthy in my opinion, but SWMBO got a peek the other night and was like "uh, do you think you should clean the inside of that sometime?"
    You seem to be taking her word for it that it needs to be cleaned.  I get the "she who must be obeyed," thing, and by all means, a happy wife tends to lead to a happy man (and vice versa), but ALL Eggs get black, so if that's all it is, you're wasting your time, wasting lump, wasting money, and adding unnecessary CO2 to the atmosphere "fixing" something that ain't broke. Education might be more helpful than a clean burn.

    On the other hand, if it's moldy (that has happened to me a number of times), or if there is such a heavy layer of stuff in the Egg that it's peeling off, and especially if that's in the dome, where it might eventually flake off into your food (ugh), then she's right, and a clean burn might be a good idea.
  • SoCalTimSoCalTim Posts: 2,155
    sctdg said:
    I like that black coating inside my Egg . When you are smoking food it is to be expected . I could be wrong but I think that people that have smoke houses don't do anything to clean them that way .Except for the carbon that peels off up inside the dome I leave the black stuff inside ,adds to flavor .
    The problem with the black coating is that it will eventually get real thick and give your food a rancid taste. I don't like the rancid taste or smell myself.
    I've slow smoked and eaten so much pork, I'm legally recognized as being part swine - Chatsworth Ca.
  • Tried a burn today and could not get the temp above 400 degrees.  bottom vent wide open top vent open..  what am I DOING WRONG????
  • @usswaspcvs18 - Take the top completely off the egg, make sure the fire box opening is lined up with the vent opening in the bottom. Then pull your thermometer out if you go really hot as it will sometimes mess up the calibration. Make sure you don't have lots of ash buildup which will block air (fuel) flow through the egg. 

    NW IA

    2 LBGE, 1 SBGE, 22.5 WSM, 1 Smokey Joe

  • Tried a burn today and could not get the temp above 400 degrees.  bottom vent wide open top vent open..  what am I DOING WRONG????
    Centigrade or Fahrenheit? If it's centigrade you don't need it hotter than that. This is how I do a controlled clean burn:

    https://thecooksdigest.co.uk/2017/04/04/spring-cleaning-the-big-green-egg/

    Large BGE and MMX, both with platesetter and cast iron grid. Superpeel for pizza, iDevice for temperature.
    Cooking on the large in deepest, darkest England since Oct 2015. MMX added to the family Mar 2016.
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    | My food blog ... BGE and other stuff http://www.thecooksdigest.com
    --------------------------------------------------------------


  • No need to do one. Cons outweighs the pros. 

    Rob

    Columbus, Ohio

  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,212
    SoCalTim said:
    sctdg said:
    I like that black coating inside my Egg . When you are smoking food it is to be expected . I could be wrong but I think that people that have smoke houses don't do anything to clean them that way .Except for the carbon that peels off up inside the dome I leave the black stuff inside ,adds to flavor .
    The problem with the black coating is that it will eventually get real thick and give your food a rancid taste. I don't like the rancid taste or smell myself.
    People who do this for a living don't do clean burns or use any other method to get rid of years of accumulated smoke, etc..  I've been using my BGEs for years and I don't smell a rancid smell.  Maybe if you never grill anything and only do very low temp cooks it could be different, I don't know.  All I can say is that my own experience is different than yours, don't know why.

    Tried a burn today and could not get the temp above 400 degrees.  bottom vent wide open top vent open..  what am I DOING WRONG????
    Once in a while I've gotten ash buildup that's "hidden" between the fire box and the outer wall of the Egg, and it's built up enough to cut back the air flow. I've taken the fire ring out, and the fire box, and cleaned all that out, put back the fire box(being careful to align the opening with the opening of the egg and the fire ring, and presto -- hot temps again!
  • RRPRRP Posts: 22,148
    I'm not here to argue the merits - just stating my opinion...it COULD BE that newer eggs are made with a different ceramic consistency PLUS the walls may even be at least 1/4" thinner. Now, after saying that there are many "old timers" with older eggs in which we do high temperature burn outs without any damage. As a personal for instance - my 17 year old large has gone through multiple 900º and above burn outs without damage.

    Now there is another issue with high temps and that is the damage to OE gaskets, but that's a whole other issue.
    L, M, S, &  Mini
    And oh yes...also a 17" BlackStone gas fired griddle! 
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
    Re- gasketing AMERICA one yard at a time!
  • WoodchunkWoodchunk Posts: 638
    edited September 2017
    Smokers need to be seasoned, the more the better. I would never clean burn a smoker, a grill yes. I use my Bge as a smoker.


  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 23,127
    Tried a burn today and could not get the temp above 400 degrees.  bottom vent wide open top vent open..  what am I DOING WRONG????
    the daisy wheel needs to be off the egg, not just open
  • RRPRRP Posts: 22,148
    Woodchunk said:
    Smokers need to be seasoned, the more the better. I would never clean burn a smoker, a grill yes. I use my Bge as a smoker.


    I hear you, and respect your opinion. Is the smoker you have used & seasoned a large metal one? How long have you used and had your ceramic BGE? I never do a burn out myself until I have egged multiple butts with lots of wood for smoke and then the creosote starts flaking off and falling into and ruining my open pots of chili, chicken breast cooks and anything else. 
    L, M, S, &  Mini
    And oh yes...also a 17" BlackStone gas fired griddle! 
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
    Re- gasketing AMERICA one yard at a time!
  • GregWGregW Posts: 1,734
    I'm glad you mentioned clean burns. I keep forgetting to do it.
    It's been on my to do list since I got my egg 20 years ago. I guess it's long past due..........
    Birmingham, AL
  • bgebrentbgebrent Posts: 16,625
    GregW said:
    I'm glad you mentioned clean burns. I keep forgetting to do it.
    It's been on my to do list since I got my egg 20 years ago. I guess it's long past due..........
    #overrated. Nice perspective brother. 
    Sandy Springs & Dawsonville Ga
  • WoodchunkWoodchunk Posts: 638
    edited September 2017
    RRP said:
    Woodchunk said:
    Smokers need to be seasoned, the more the better. I would never clean burn a smoker, a grill yes. I use my Bge as a smoker.


    I hear you, and respect your opinion. Is the smoker you have used & seasoned a large metal one? How long have you used and had your ceramic BGE? I never do a burn out myself until I have egged multiple butts with lots of wood for smoke and then the creosote starts flaking off and falling into and ruining my open pots of chili, chicken breast cooks and anything else. 
    I do have a steel offset smoker thats 18 yo. Bought my egg dec.16. I have already seen flakes once and I wire brush it off  right before lighting a fire. My first smoker was homemade over 45 years ago, wood frame with sheet metal screwed on? No high heat  cooks. My offset gets flakes, just knock them off with a brush. 

    The seasoning is what made that first smoker air tight

  • RRPRRP Posts: 22,148
    Woodchunk said:
    RRP said:
    Woodchunk said:
    Smokers need to be seasoned, the more the better. I would never clean burn a smoker, a grill yes. I use my Bge as a smoker.


    I hear you, and respect your opinion. Is the smoker you have used & seasoned a large metal one? How long have you used and had your ceramic BGE? I never do a burn out myself until I have egged multiple butts with lots of wood for smoke and then the creosote starts flaking off and falling into and ruining my open pots of chili, chicken breast cooks and anything else. 
    I do have a steel offset smoker thats 18 yo. Bought my egg dec.16. I have already seen flakes once and I wire brush it off  right before lighting a fire. My first smoker was homemade over 45 years ago, wood frame with sheet metal screwed on? No high heat  cooks. My offset gets flakes, just knock them off with a brush. 

    The seasoning is what made that first smoker air tight

    Thanks for your explanations! Gotta ask though- with all the wire brushing efforts you have described isn't that effort before every use a pita? Why not do an occasional burn off? 
    L, M, S, &  Mini
    And oh yes...also a 17" BlackStone gas fired griddle! 
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
    Re- gasketing AMERICA one yard at a time!
  • WoodchunkWoodchunk Posts: 638
    edited September 2017
    RRP said:
    Woodchunk said:
    RRP said:
    Woodchunk said:
    Smokers need to be seasoned, the more the better. I would never clean burn a smoker, a grill yes. I use my Bge as a smoker.


    I hear you, and respect your opinion. Is the smoker you have used & seasoned a large metal one? How long have you used and had your ceramic BGE? I never do a burn out myself until I have egged multiple butts with lots of wood for smoke and then the creosote starts flaking off and falling into and ruining my open pots of chili, chicken breast cooks and anything else. 
    I do have a steel offset smoker thats 18 yo. Bought my egg dec.16. I have already seen flakes once and I wire brush it off  right before lighting a fire. My first smoker was homemade over 45 years ago, wood frame with sheet metal screwed on? No high heat  cooks. My offset gets flakes, just knock them off with a brush. 

    The seasoning is what made that first smoker air tight

    Thanks for your explanations! Gotta ask though- with all the wire brushing efforts you have described isn't that effort before every use a pita? Why not do an occasional burn off? 
    I have only brushed the egg once. My sons is 7yo now and He has never done a burn off on his large. 
  • Don't 
    Jason NW GA- home of carpet and Mexican restaurants
    LBGE, MM, BS (Blackstone and the other kind)
    One sorry Labrador

    My chili did not suck. 
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