Is Kiln Dried Wood Good for Cooking?

Is Kiln Dried Wood Good for Cooking?

Cooking with wood-fired fires is a timeless tradition that has stood the test of time. Not only does it impart unique and delicious flavors to food, but it also requires a certain level of skill and understanding to get the best results.

When it comes to wood, not all types are equal. Just like selecting the perfect cut of meat or choosing the right spices, the type of wood you use can make a big difference in the final flavor of your food.

But with so many different types of wood available, how do you know which one is the best for cooking?

One of the key factors to consider is the wood's density. Hardwoods, such as oak and hickory, are denser and burn slower, which makes them ideal for long, slow cooking. Softer woods, like cedar and pine, burn faster and are better suited for quick cooking methods or adding subtle smoke flavors.

Another important factor is the moisture content of the wood. Wet or green wood will produce a lot of smoke, but it will also create a bitter, acrid flavor. Dry wood, on the other hand, will burn cleaner and produce less smoke, resulting in a more balanced flavor.

So next time you're planning a wood-fired feast, take the time to carefully select the right type of wood for your cooking method and taste preferences. It may take a bit of trial and error, but the delicious results will be well worth it.

Green Wood

Cooking with green wood is a recipe for disaster! Not only is it difficult to light and keep lit, but it also produces a dank, smoky fire that imparts unpleasant and off-putting flavors to your food. Green wood has the highest moisture content of any cooking wood, which means it's full of contaminants that will be "cooked" out as the wood burns. Trust us, you don't want your food to taste like that. Stick to dry, seasoned wood for the best results.

Seasoned Wood

While seasoned wood is an improvement over green wood, it's still not the best choice for cooking. The seasoning process, while necessary to reduce moisture content, also leads to the decomposition of the wood and the growth of contaminants like mold, fungus, and insects. Yuck! The best option for cooking is kiln dried wood. Kiln drying uses heat and controlled air flow to quickly and efficiently remove moisture from the wood, resulting in a clean-burning, contaminant-free fuel that will give your food the perfect balance of wood smoke flavor without any off-putting tastes. So skip the seasoned wood and go straight for the kiln dried stuff - your taste buds will thank you.

Kiln Dried Wood

Kiln dried wood is the ideal choice for cooking. It has the lowest moisture content, which encourages clean, evenly hot combustion and an extended burn time. It's also free of contaminants like mold, fungus, and insects. The kiln drying process uses heat and controlled air flow to quickly remove moisture from the wood, resulting in a clean-burning fuel that will give your food the perfect balance of wood smoke flavor. So skip the green and seasoned wood and go straight for the kiln dried stuff - your taste buds will thank you.

kiln dried smoking wood chunks
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Why Kiln Dried Wood is Best for Cooking

Live-fire cooking is a popular trend among top chefs, who are rediscovering the unique flavors and benefits of using kiln dried cooking wood. Kiln dried wood is easier to light, burns hotter and longer, and imparts superior flavors to food. It's the perfect choice for achieving the intense, smoky flavors that are so sought after in live-fire cooking. So if you want to join the ranks of top chefs and elevate your live-fire cooking, make sure to use kiln dried wood for the best results.

Superior Flavors

Yes, time and technology have given us many convenient cooking tools, from the electric oven to the microwave, and even the charcoal briquette, but while these “new-fangled” cooking methods provide adequate heat to cook food, they do nothing to add any flavor.

Wood-fire cooking alone holds the unique position of being both a method of cooking our food and an ingredient in the finished dish.

Let’s face it, whether we’re talking about burgers and hotdogs, or T-bone steaks and fresh lobsters…everything tastes better cooked over a wood-burning fire.

kiln driedcooking wood splits
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Kiln Dried Wood is Easier to Light

Because the wood is drier, it’s more combustible. Making it easier to light and get burning on the first try. Kiln dried wood lights even easier than charcoal and requires no additional accelerant (light fluid) which itself adds off-putting flavors and aromas to food.

Wood that ignites faster also reaches its optimal cooking and smoking temperatures faster, decreasing the amount of time you’ll have to wait before adding your food to the grill or smoker.

Kiln Dried Wood Burns Hotter and Longer

Moisture reduces both the heat and the longevity of a fire. Great if putting out a house fire, but for grilling a steak…not so much.

Wood that’s been kiln dried isn’t fighting this constant battle with moisture and will burn up to 45% hotter, for twice as long, and much more consistently than “seasoned” or air-dried woods.

A hotter burning fire allows you to sear meats and vegetables over high heat, and the properly timed use of a longer burning kiln dried wood lets you cook long and slow, the ideal method for traditional smoked BBQ.

If you’re looking to create the best possible food with fire and smoke, nothing is going to match the experience you get from kiln dried cooking wood. Whether you’re using sticks, splits, or chunks, the flavors and aromas of a meal cooked over a fire of properly dried wood are incomparable and unforgettable.

Cutting Edge Firewood offers the best kiln dried cooking wood available. Period. You’ll taste the difference in every bite.

About The Author

Leroy Hite

Leroy Hite is the founder and CEO of Cutting Edge Firewood, an ultra-premium firewood and cooking wood company located in Atlanta, Georgia. Leroy's mission is to give people the experience of the perfect fire because some of life’s best memories are made in the warmth of a fire’s glow. He founded Cutting Edge Firewood in 2013 with a goal to provide unmatched quality wood and unparalleled customer service nationwide. The company offers premium kiln-dried firewood, cooking wood, and pizza wood in a wide variety of species and cuts to customers around the country.