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High Temp Sear Help

johannjohann Posts: 111
edited 9:01AM in EggHead Forum
Going to cook some steaks tonight and I want to succeed at a high temp sear. I had horrible luck getting high temps on the large. Now i have a small and the hottest I've got it so far was 600.

Any hints on fire-starting these bad boys? I was hoping to high temp sear on the small tonight.

For reference I plan on taking hat off egg, opening vent all the way, starting a half chimney of coals and then dumping em in.

Any thing I'm missing to get "nuclear"

There's no gasket on the small so no worries there.


  • Clean out ALL of the ash, make sure the opening in the egg and the fire box are lined up, make sure the fire grate is clean, don't use any fine particles of charcoal.

    All of this should get you there. If not, wait a little longer and give it time.
  • FearlessGrillFearlessGrill Posts: 695
    What he said. I routinely get my Large's thermo pegged without going to excessive effort. Just put in new lump, use larger pieces, and give it time to get going. If you want to speed it up get some additional air in there with a small fan or something. Just be sure to watch it if you do that - the temp will rise very quickly.

    I haven't tried lighting with a chimney - I've used several other methods, including just paper in with the coals and a MAPP torch, and haven't noticed that the lighting method makes a huge difference.

    I recently picked up a Small as well, and definitely noticed that it doesn't get as hot as my Large, though my steaks still came out great.

    Good luck,

  • Grandpas GrubGrandpas Grub Posts: 14,226
    Heat = air + fuel.

    It doesn't matter what size egg, for them most part if you can't temperatures then buy or make a wiggle stick and clear out the holes in the fire grate. You will see the improvements within a few minutes.

    As for your small, again, make sure the fire grate holes and fire box holes are clear. Load the lump close to the top of the fire ring. Using a chimney starter will work well.

    The lump burns at about 1900° (orange lava looking) so the closer you are to the lump the better searing you are going to get.

    On the large I use the spider in normal position and after the sear I put on the grid and finish the cook up into the egg. Great solution without having to take the dome temperature high. The same concept will work on the small. Remove the fire ring, get your sear, put the fire ring back in and grid on then finish the cook.

  • Misippi EggerMisippi Egger Posts: 5,095
    Open the lower vent, close the dome, & leave the top open (no daisy wheel). That will create a draft through the egg and take it nuclear. If it gets too high, you can add the DW on top and regulate with that - start with it wide open, then ease it down until you regulate at 600.

    Note: This works if you are going to sear, then dwell (shut all the vents and leave on until internal hits your goal).

    If you want to do the traditional "TRex" method, where you sear, then roast at 400 (not shutting off the fire), then you need to leave the dome open after you add the coals. Never close the dome until the sear is over (don't want the dome ceramics to get to 600 or it will be very hard to get it back down to 400). With TREx, you sear (30 sec per side per 1/2 inch of thickness), then let rest for 20 minutes while you adjust vents, close dome and get fire stable at 400*. Place steak back on egg and roast until desired internal temp. Takes longer - but awesome steak!
  • johannjohann Posts: 111
    Thanks for all the tips; will see what happens!
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    600 is a high temp sear.

    what's the goal? pittsburgh steak?

    how do you like them?
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 28,817

    The small doesn't get as hot as the others without some help. A fan in front of the lower vent will get it there if you want to go that high.



    Caledon, ON


  • FearlessGrillFearlessGrill Posts: 695
    Thanks Steve,

    I kind of figured as much, since the bottom vent is so much smaller. I was still able to get it up over 600, and my steaks came out great. If I want to get hotter, I'll just move the grate closer to the fire.

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