Cook Like a Champion

Kamados are well-known for cooking mouth-watering meats: steaks, ribs, burgers, poultry, and even fish. These are grills that can do more than just grill. They're often used for high-temperature grilling, slow smoking, and even baking.

Imagine such exotic foods cooking on your grill as pork roast, pot pies, beef jerky, pizza, bacon and eggs, homemade bread, or clams. You can make a stir-fry on a kamado, for grillings sake! So load up your Saffire with all-natural lump charcoal (or wood smoking chips), because you're about to learn how to cook like a champion.


Smoke a Christmas Stuffed Pork Roast on a Kamado Grill

Stuffed Pork Roast – Serves 4-6 Prep Time: 1 hour Cook Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes Pork: Buy a 3-5 pound pork shoulder (boneless) or Pork Loin for a leaner cut. Meat will be butter flied or roll-cut ÂĽ to ½ inch thick, roughly 6×12 or larger. Cut it yourself or have the butcher do […]

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A Wood Fire Pizza Dough Recipe for Your Kamado Grill

Pizza! Kamado Style! This week, I’ve begun the task of detailing how to bake pizza on the Saffire Grill and Smoker. I have discovered that there is no longer a need to run to my local pizzeria to order up a large pie to go. Making pizza on my Saffire is now a weekly event! […]

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ceramic cooker ribs recipe

How to Smoke Baby Back Ribs on your Kamado Grill

Smoking ribs over low heat for a long time is easily achieved by using the Saffire ceramic smoker. The Saffire, sometimes called a kamado grill, provides the ideal setting for achieving the low and even temperatures needed to prepare the perfect ribs. Minimal air is used which preserves the moisture and volume of the meat. […]

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A Quick and Easy Recipe for Saffire Hot Wings

It’s tailgating season, and one of the staples of any Grillmaster’s BBQ party is the hot wing. Our Saffire Road Show crew has spent the last year perfecting the Saffire Hot Wing recipe for us to share with you. Give it a try, take some pictures, and let us know how it goes on our Facebook page. […]

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A Kamado Steak Night

If you’ve seen our Facebook page in the last year, it focuses on kamado grilling on the Saffire. It is loaded with beautiful posts for wonderful meals cooked on every size and class of Saffire Grills. We modified this recipe from a cook done by Saffire’s own Southeastern Territory Manager, Pete Lee. Pete has almost 40 years […]

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An Easy Saffire Dinner for Two

Your 15″ Medium Saffire Grill is more than just a smoker. It’s your all-purpose outdoor oven that can prepare whole meals for you and yours. For today’s blog, we’ve chosen a meal shared by Saffire Demo Grillmaster Doug Keller that he posted to our Facebook page a few days ago. Try it out then visit […]

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A Quick Saffire Grilled Breakfast

I remember every fall when I was in elementary school. It was after we moved to the hometown of Saffire Grills, Rockford, IL. My family joined a small local church. Every October, the church would sponsor a Father and Son Camp out. I remember waking up on those cold autumn mornings, groggy until I smelled […]

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Steak Tacos

Some Super Saffire Steak Tacos

On very special occasions, my Dad would make arrachera steak on the grill. I remember him marinating it for hours and filling my tortilla with hot steak and cheese topping everything off with my mom’s homemade “chile” salsa. I haven’t tried grilling arrachera in years. Every attempt tasted fine, except for being a little tough. […]

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The Perfect Saffire Breakfast Bake

Yes. It’s definitely possible to make a whole breakfast casserole using only your Saffire Grill. One beautiful, sunny Sunday morning, I set out to prove it. Ingredients 1 lb Breakfast meat (I used sausage in for this recipe) 1 cup frozen potatoes Can of Pillsbury Grand Rolls 4 tbs of butter (for sausage gravy) 4 […]

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A Southern Delicacy on the Saffire Kamado Grill

Shrimp n’ Grits on the Saffire Kamado Grill One of the best features of kamado grills are their versatility. A kamado grill is more like a kitchen stove than a grill. From high heat searing to low and slow smoking and everything in between, the kamado grill is the precision controlled wood fired oven that does […]

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Using Your Saffire

+ Starting the Fire

Caution: Never Use Lighter Fluid Inside Your Saffire! It Will Void Your Warranty!

Not only does lighter fluid have an odor and lower the quality of your food, but it can also damage the ceramics in your grill.

  1. Remove the Cooking Grid. (You can hang the grid on the Side Shelf Tool Hooks while you light the fire.)
  2. Remove excess ash.
    • If you have a Charcoal Basket and charcoal is left in the basket from the previous fire, just shake the Charcoal Basket to knock the ash down into the Ash Pan. This will allow better air flow for easier starting. The remaining charcoal is good to use again.
    • If you don't have a Charcoal Basket, stir the charcoal around with your Ash Cleaning Tool to get it through the Cast Iron Grate at the bottom of your firebox.
  3. Add charcoal as needed.
    • If you have a traditional ceramic Firebox, pour lump charcoal into the Firebox until it covers the series of round holes in the Firebox. You may fill it to the top of the Firebox if you need to cook or smoke for more than three hours.
    • If you have Saffire's Crucible Firebox, you can fill the Charcoal Basket all the way up, or fill the Crucible Firebox with three inches of charcoal. (Remember to leave a space between the charcoal and the firebox for air to get to the charcoal on the sides for optimal heat.)
    NOTE: If you want to use the “Smokin’ Chip Feeder” to add wood chips to the fire it is good to make sure the charcoal is not covering the access port at the front of the firebox area (see details under Smoking on a Saffire).
  4. Start the fire.
    • If using a combustible fire-starter, nestle one down into the charcoal. You may place fire-starters in more than one spot in the charcoal if you want to get the whole area burning quicker for high temperature grilling and searing. (You can stack some charcoal around the starter to speed up the process.) Be sure to leave enough air space around the stacked charcoal for the air and flame or it will not burn properly. Now light the starter.
    • If you are using an electric fire-starter, nestle it down into the charcoal so it is resting on charcoal just above the grate. The charcoal should envelope the lower half of the starter element. Plug in the starter and let it operate no more than 8 minutes.
      Unplug and remove the starter within 8 minutes to avoid damaging the starter. You do not have to leave the starter in longer as the fire will continue to increase after removing it.
  5. Let the temperature rise. Replace the Cooking Grid and close the grill. Swing the Chimney Top Air Control fully open until the grill is up to the desired temperature.
  6. Adjust the temperature the way you want it. When the grill has reached the right temperature, adjust the Top and Bottom Air Controls according to your needs (see Controlling the Temperature).
  7. Cook your masterpiece.
  8. Extinguish the fire. When you are finished cooking, close the Top and Bottom Air Controls to snuff the fire out. This will preserve any remaining coals for next use. (Note that you can close the Air Controls before your food is finished cooking. Your Saffire will hold its heat for a long time.)
Starting Charcoal with an Electric Fire Starter 2

Electric Fire Starter

+ Controlling the Temperature

High Temperature Grilling and Searing

When the thermometer at the top of the grill is near 600° F (300° C) the temperature at the lowest cooking grid position is 1,000° F (540° C)!

Be careful not to exceed 750° F (400° C) on your thermometer, or you risk damaging your ceramic firebox and/or fire ring. Your grill should never reach 1,000° F at the dome, as this posses a safety risk.

Note: We recommend that the top and bottom Air Controls be adjusted in sync with one another so that the bottom control is not open much more than the top control. As air reaches the fire and is superheated, it expands greatly. With this in mind, it is better to slow the fire down by closing the bottom damper and then reducing the top damper opening to fine tune the temperature. This is recommended, but is not a safety issue.

For more information, see the Saffire manual.

+ Using the Cooking Grids

Using the Multi-Level Cooking Rack you can place the half-grids at the lower level or at the top level depending on how much heat you need. You may cook on both levels at once. If you desire to cook on the full diameter of the cooking area on both levels you can purchase two more of the half-grids to accomplish this. You may also add another level of cooking with the Secondary Cooking Grid (SCG).

A closeup of the inside of a platinum 23 inch Saffire. The multi-rack system is shown

Grids Split

Multi-Grid shown with both grids at the bottom level of a Multi-Rack; Crucible Firebox shown below them

Grids at Bottom

Multi-Grid shown with both grids on the top level of a Multi-Rack; Crucible Firebox shown below them

Grids at Top

+ Roasting and Smoking with the Heat Deflector

For Roasting and Smoking you will want to cook with indirect heat to avoid burning the surface of your meat. This can accomplished by putting your food on a rack which is placed inside a pan. Water, juice, etc. may be added to the pan for a more effective buffer from the heat.

An easier way to accomplish this is provided with your Saffire Grill by way of the Ceramic Heat Deflector. The Heat Deflector is located underneath the food in order to create indirect, convective heat, turning the Saffire into a smoker. The Heat Deflector is handy any time you are cooking thicker pieces of meat that may become overly done on the outside before the inside has finished cooking. It keeps you food out of the direct flame and intense radiant heat from the coals.

The beauty of the Heat Deflector is that you will have convective heat and some radiant heat off the dome to provide even heat all around your masterpiece. This eliminates the need for rotisseries, water pans, meat rack and all of the preparation and cleaning that goes along with it.

Two-Piece Heat Deflector on a Multi-Rack, with a Crucible Firebox shown below them
Half of a Two-Piece Heat Deflector on a Multi-Rack, with a Crucible Firebox shown below them

After starting the fire, one of both of the half Ceramic Heat Deflectors are placed on the bottom of the Multi-Rack. Use just one deflector if you want indirect heat on one side and direct heat for grilling on the other side. A space is left between the deflector and the firebox for the heat to flow. It is recommended to place a disposable aluminum pan, or foil with the edges bent up, on top of the Ceramic Heat Deflector. This will catch the dripping and keep them from running into the fire.

The Cooking Grids may now be placed in the desired position on the wire rack.

Multi-Grid shown with one grid at the top level and one at the bottom level of a Multi-Rack; Crucible firebox shown below Multi-Rack

+ Smoking on a Saffire

To add smoked flavor to your food you can use wood chips or wood chunks. Wood chunks may be added to the fire before you start cooking. With Saffire you may easily add wood chips to the fire at any time via Saffire's unique Smokin’ Chip Feeder System.

With the Smokin’ Chip Feeder System you do not have to fight with the fire or even open the grill to add your wood chips. It also eliminates interrupting the cooking cycle and loosing heat from your grill. To use the Smokin' Chip Feeder System, do the following.

  1. Spread a handful of chips into the open portion of the stainless steel cylinder.
  2. Unscrew the round access port cover from the front of the smoker.
  3. Slide the open end of the cylinder with the wood chips into the smoker via the access port and twist it 180° to deposit the chips onto the coals.
  4. Remove the tool from the grill and replace the access port cover.
Adding smoking chips to your grill is easy with Saffire's patented Smokin' Chip Feeder, simply remove the Smokin' Chip Feeder port cap, insert the Feeder tool, and twist the tool slightly to make the chips slide in

Smoke Intensity Chart

One is mild. Ten is the strongest.

IntensityChip FlavorMeat
1.White CedarSalmon
3.Sugar MaplePoultry & Pork
8.Red OakBeef

+ Secondary Cooking Grid

The Secondary Cooking Grid (SCG), added on top of the full circular cooking area, gives you an even larger cooking area. It is elevated 5 inches above the cooking surface below, allowing enough room to access and turn food on the lower level.

There is a tab welded to the bottom and back of the cooking grids upon which the back leg of the grid rests. The front leg rests on the bars of the Cooking Grid.

Saffire 15 Inch Cooking Grid Elevator on Grill Grate

+ Cleaning the Cooking Grids

It is not necessary to use soap to clean the Cooking Grids after every use. The easiest way to keep your grids clean is by using a brass or stainless steel bristled brush just before cooking. After starting the fire, put the Cooking Grid into position and allow it to heat up at a high temperature setting for 5 to 10 minutes. Brush the grids, close the lid and slow the grill down with the Air Controls.

A good way to finish cleaning and prepare the grid for food is to wipe it with a cloth soaked with vegetable or olive oil. You can use your grill brush to aid in the application. A small piece of cloth will normally stick to the wire brush quite well. Do this just before putting food on the grill.

+ Ash Cleaning

Caution: Do Not Allow Ash to Fill All the Way up to the Grate!

This prevents air from flowing around the grate, causing it to get insanely hot and reducing its life expectancy.

Charcoal ash shown underneath the charcoal grate, from the perspective of someone looking through the ash door of a Saffire

Ash is traditionally removed from a ceramic grill by using the ash tool to rake the ash down through the grate. Once the ash area is full it is raked out through the air control at the bottom of the grill and into a bucket. However, if your Saffire Grill is equipped with the Ash Dump Pan, cleaning is so much easier. If you have the Basket Grate you just grab the handles and shake the ash down. Lift the basket out and set it aside. Now lift the Ash Dump Pan out of the bottom of the grill and dump the ash into a noncombustible container.

Cooking Guidelines


General Guidelines

The Saffire makes a fantastic pizza oven! You may set it up in one of three ways:

  1. Place a Pizza Stone on top of the Cooking Grids, level with the top of the grill. (This may incur a little extra wear and stress on the Cooking Grids over time.)
  2. Invert the wire Multi-Rack and set the Pizza Stone on top.
  3. Mount the Saffire Accessory Bracket on the Multi-Rack and place the stone on top.

After adding the Pizza Stone, bring the grill up to 500°-600° F and maintain that temperature with the Air Controls set to high (see Controlling the Temperature).

Once the grill has reached 500°-600°, do not wait much more than a couple of minutes to put the pizza on. Spread a layer of corn meal on top of the Pizza Stone just before placing the pizza. Vigilance is required to ensure the pizza crust does not burn.

Tips for Preventing Burned Pizza

To help prevent the crust from burning you have a couple of options. These are especially helpful when baking a thicker or stuffed pizza, calzone, etc.:

  1. Place the pizza on a cold Pizza Stone and then place the stone into the preheated grill.
  2. Place the Ceramic Heat Deflector on top of the Multi-Rack and then place the Pizza Stone on top of the deflector for a higher heat deflection to absorption ratio.

Note: Rotating the Pizza Stone also helps to keep the stone temperature down.

Miscellaneous Notes

  • When making pizza from scratch you can build your pizza right on the stone.
Saffire 15 Inch Silver, Open -- Pizza Stone and Heat Deflector
Homemade Pizza Grilling on a Pizza Stone

Safety Practices

Warning: If It Has Only Been a Couple of Minutes Since You Have Closed Down the Air Setting on a Very Hot Fire, Do Not Abruptly Open the Lid.

As with most grills, this can cause the additional smoke in the top of the grill to ignite into flame when it is opened.

When opening the grill it is always a good practice to first open the Chimney Top completely and then lift the lid open one or two inches and hold there for a count of 5. Then open the lid fully. This allows the excess smoke to exit the grill safely.

Warning: Never allow your grill's temperature (as measured at the grill dome by the temperature gauge) to exceed 900° F. 

Allowing temperatures that exceed 900° F may pose a safety hazard.

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