Why use Hardwood Pellets?

I've found some differences in using Softwood vs. using Hardwood for both my outdoor Pizza oven and my BBQ. 

Softwood

Softwood is available throughout the UK and is extremely easy to buy and buy very cheaply. However is does have significant drawbacks in both the flavour and the smoke produced. 

 

Softwood pellets burn hotter and they burn faster, they also produce higher volumes of soot, and the resin in the pellets creates a sticky residue. Varieties common in the UK are mainly Pine which is a very resinous tree. The smoke produced from these is not ideal for cooking, it will leave the pizza and food with a slightly bitter taste and you will want to avoid cooking while the pellet is smoking. 

Hardwood

Hardwood pellets are not very common in the UK. They are too expensive to be used in the Fuel, Horse Bedding or Cat Litter industries and there are few and far between places to buy them. 

I have had success recently with both the Hardwood Pellets coming out of America and the Hardwood Pellets which are produced by UUNI for their own Pizza Ovens. The varieties in these are usually Beech or Oak. 

Smoked Chicken Breast. Next time we will use a Dry Rub and some Hot Sauce!

Smoking Pellet Reviews

 

Beech Wood Pellets 

Beech is the King All Rounder. Good with meat, fish & chicken. The smoke produced is a mild, somewhat delicate smoked flavour.

Oak Wood Pellets

A strong smokey flavour delicious with Ribs, Pork, and well suited Red Meat. Pairs well with sweet or spicy sauces used.

Apple Wood Pellets

These pellets are the strongest of the fruit woods. They produce a sweet, fruity smoke. I recommend with Pork, or with any sweet sauces you are using.

Community Questions

Has anyone either knowingly or unknowing used softwood pellets in their UUNI pizza oven? If so what were the results?   I  have never done it and see no reason to try.Just curious....   Some of the softwood pellets have higher KWH ratings than their hardwood brothers and they burn differently. It is said they give off a foul taste.

Softwoods (generally conifers) tend to have more resins.  Some BBQers think that the resins make poison smoke in stick burners.  I've never seen softwood pellets in my favorite BBQ supplies shop.

I cannot speak for the pellets, but I am in an area where our primary wood heat source is various species of pine.  I would not want my food over that, the smoke is not pleasant like beech, oak, hickory etc.

Why is there such a difference in Price between wood pellets, I have seen the local plumbase with some for £3?

Pay careful attention to what is inside the Wood Pellets. When buying wood pellets which are meant for fuel there is no guarantee that they will be hardwood pellets. In the UK the majority of all pellets softwood. 

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