How To Build A Brick BBQ With Chimney

An outdoor barbecue is ideal for your backyard if you enjoy spending time in your garden and cooking for your family and friends. There’s something extraordinary about meals cooked over an open fire, especially when the heat comes from a brick-built barbeque rather than a gas grill.

You can easily buy a barbeque kit, yet you can save money and have more satisfaction if you follow a step-by-step DIY project guide. The building process is simple, and you don’t have to follow any premium plans to have a great outdoor kitchen. In a couple of weekends, you can follow simple brick BBQ plans with chimney and have something that blends in with your garden and back yard.

Do this professionally, and you can have something that meets all local building codes. In our guide, you can learn more about how to build a brick grill using a simple BBQ design. By the end, you’ll know more about how many bricks you’ll need, the best place to build outdoor kitchens, and which outdoor barbeque designs meet your needs.

brick chimney bbq

Once you’re done, you’ll be ready to undertake your next step-by-step DIY woodworking project to build a gable roof over your outdoor dining area. (Read BBQ Party Games Ideas For Adults)

How Do You Build a BBQ Chimney?

Here’s the first lot of information on how to build a BBQ with chimney rather than a regular fire pit.

  • Reinforcement – Rebar
  • Cement, sand, and gravel for concrete
  • 250 bricks of sizes 4 1/2 x 9 x 3 inches
  • 20 fire bricks sized 4 1/2 x 9 x 3 inches
  • Fire clay and fine sand to make your clay mortar
  • Lumber 2×6 posts
  • Lumber 4×4 posts

Once complete, you’ll need the following:

  • Food thermometer
  • BBQ accessories
  • Grill brush

1. Start With Your Outdoor BBQ Foundation Plans

First, you’ll need to build the outdoor BBQ foundations to withstand the weight of the bricks.

You’ll need to use several batter boards and twine to lay your foundation before excavating the ground to 8-10 inches.

Next, build a basic form using your 2×10 boards and secure it with your 2×4 stakes.

pouring concrete foundation

2. Pour Concrete Foundations

To reinforce the concrete, place many steel bars in the form. Next, pour a small amount of concrete into the form using a wheelbarrow or a power mixer (2 parts cement, 3 parts sand, 4 parts gravel, and water).

Finally, by running a straight edge down the sides of the form, you may level the foundation.

3. BBQ – First Layer of Bricks

Allow at least 72 hours for the concrete to dry before putting the brick; using the appropriate method, building the BBQ’s foundation is a simple process. Before laying the bricks, apply mortar to the foundation. After that, place a brick at the beginning and another at the finish of the course. Fill the rest of the row with bricks after that.

To ensure that the bricks are level, use a spirit level. Use a trowel to remove any extra mortar before it dries out.

more bricks

4. Laying More Bricks

Carry on with the job by laying the second course of bricks as before. If you want a professional outcome, work with extreme care and smart judgment. First, you must put the bricks in the stretcher bond, as shown in the figure.

Tip: Use a spirit level to level the bricks and tap them with a hammer to modify their position. Cut the bricks with a wet saw and lay them out with the cut edge facing inward.

5. Outdoor BBQ Base and Concrete Countertop

Before pouring the concrete countertop, lay roughly 8-9 courses of bricks. Then, using various 4×4 posts and 2×4 supports, build a simple countertop form.

Don’t forget to use a spirit level to check the surface level; otherwise, you won’t be happy with the finished result.

You will need a net of rebar to reinforce the concrete countertop. Pour a small amount of concrete into your wooden form. For the mix, use 2 parts cement, 3 parts sand, 4 parts gravel, and water).

Using a straight edge, level the surface and remove air pockets. In addition, plumb the sides of the form to get a flat surface. (Read 7 Fun Outdoor Games For Large Groups)

6. BBQ Cooking Floor

Allow at least 72 hours for the concrete to dry before constructing the BBQ’s floor and walls. Use your cinder blocks instead of standard bricks to build the firebox because cinder blocks can withstand the high temperatures created by your barbecue.

Tip: To bind the fire bricks together, mix 4 parts sand to 6 parts fire clay into a clay mortar. A cement-based mortar can’t stand the high temperatures created by burning wood.

7. Building Your BBQ Top Arch

To build the arched top of the barbecue, you’ll need to build a template out of 1/2″ plywood. Place the curved templates on multiple 444 posts after cutting them out. Work sure the templates are plumb by working with great care and good judgment.

To increase the rigidity of the template, drive many 3″ screws through the plywood in the supports and add several spacers between them.

Begin building the arching top by laying bricks on both sides of the barbecue. Take your time putting the bricks because they should be properly aligned on both ends. Next, make a cement-based mortar and properly bind the bricks together.

Tip: If you want to leave the bricks exposed, use a trowel to scrape away the extra mortar and wipe them with a damp sponge.

8. Building Chimney

In the same method as before, continue setting the bricks into place. However, don’t forget to allow enough space at the top of the barbeque for the smoke to escape. This is an essential component of the project; therefore, pay close attention to the hole size.

Tip: Do not remove the templates until the mortar has dried completely (about 4-5 days), or the entire structure may collapse.

After that, you must build the outside BBQ chimney. Place the regular bricks in a straightforward pattern, making sure the chimney is plumb on all four sides.

Three or four layers of bricks should be plenty to keep the smoke away from your outdoor kitchen, but you’ll want to double-check building requirements and how your garden’s windows blow.

After you’ve finished the task, use a wire brush to remove any extra mortar and a damp sponge to clean the bricks. You can render the outside faces of the outdoor barbeque for a modern, clean look.

Tip: Use flagstone or ceramic tiles to cover the concrete countertop and foundation. Fill the gaps with grout or a sand-cement mixture. (Read 9 Cheap Ways To Block Neighbors View)

Add your wire rack, and you are ready for your first test run of your brick BBQ with roof.

How Do You Build An Outdoor BBQ Brick?

Step 1 – Building BBQ Base

  1. Layout the foundation of the brick oven. That is why you need to use batter boards and string to lay your foundation professionally.
  2. We recommend you use the 3-4-5 rule to make sure the corners of the foundation are right-angled.
  3. Next, dig the ditches with a shovel. The depth of the foundation varies depending on the soil structure, but 1 – 1 1/2′ should be sufficient to support the barbeque in most circumstances.
  4. Build the form and install the reinforcing structure. Use 2×6 wooden boards to build the form along the trenches, as in the image. Secure the boards by using 2×4 stakes every 2′.
  5. Next, build a net out of re-rebars, tie it together with wire, and install it into the form. The concrete will be more robust due to the reinforcing structure, which will support the weight of the bricks and the concrete countertop.
  6. Pour concrete into the form and level the foundation with a straight edge. Use a power mixer to blend 2 parts cement, 3 parts sand, 4 parts gravel, and water.
  7. Then, using zigzag moves, pull a straight edge along with the form. Pour more concrete if necessary and level it again. The foundation will be completely horizontal if the formwork is level. Let the concrete dry out for several days.
  8. Construct the outside barbecue’s foundation walls. Lay standard bricks on the foundation, as seen in the illustration. To adequately bind the bricks, combine 3 parts cement and 5 parts fine sand until you have a solution with the consistency of cream.
  9. Start and end the row with a brick, then tie a string to assist you as you lay the rest of the bricks. Spread the mortar on the bricks using a trowel and clean away the excess with a sponge.
  10. Create the form for the brick barbecue countertop. We recommend using four 44 posts and placing them on the BBQ’s foundation to get the work done correctly. The length of the posts should be equal to the height of the walls minus 4”. Use a spirit level to make sure the posts are perfectly plumb.
  11. Place the 2×4 wooden boards on top of the posts, yet take care; otherwise, the concrete might slip through the cracks created between them.
  12. Build the reinforcing structure for the concrete countertop. Use rebar every 3” and tie them together with construction wire.
  13. Next, insert the reinforcing structure into the form and use spacers to raise it by about 2 inches.
  14. Mix concrete and pour about 4” in the form before leveling the concrete with your straight edge.
  15. Use refractory bricks to construct the outdoor barbecue floor. Make sure the floor is absolutely horizontal with great care.
  16. The top recommendation is to use a mix of clay and sand to stick the bricks together, as a cement-based mortar won’t resist the high temperatures developed by the burning wood.
  17. Smart Tip: The refractory bricks hold heat. If you can’t get fire bricks, you could use regular bricks, yet they lack efficiency.
  18. Fill the rest of the form with concrete, level it with a straight edge, and let it dry for several days.
  19. Next, install granite or flagstone over the concrete; fill the joints between the flagstone with mortar and clean away any excess using a damp sponge.

Step 2 – Building BBQ Chimney

Build the outdoor barbecue’s walls using any of the free designs. Start at the beginning and end of the row with a brick and tie a string to their exterior to lay the bricks professionally.

Next, place the remaining bricks using a spirit level to confirm that the wall is plumb and horizontal.

You can put the bricks on a stretcher or a shiner. Of course, you’ll have first to cut them in half lengthways, but you will save material.

The chimney’s foundation will be made of bricks. To place, build a lintel above the outside barbecue’s entrance (use a stone lintel or pour a concrete lintel).

If you want the same form as the image, you’ll need a wet saw to cut the brick. You should rent a brick saw for the day because it may be too costly for your budget.

Build the rest of the chimney bricks and use cement-based mortar to connect them. Work slowly and gently, wiping excess mortar away with a moist sponge.

Use a spirit level every time you lay a new brick to make sure the chimney is perfectly plumb.

You’ll build an outdoor barbeque like a pro if you follow our step-by-step instructions.

Step 3 – Outdoor Barbeque Testing

Allow several days for the cement mortar to dry before lighting the first fire; else, the whole structure may collapse. Then, apply multiple coats of white cement render to your brick barbecue to give it a lovely finish.

You should also cover the brick barbeque foundation and countertop with flag stone, making sure it matches the color of the cement coat and bricks. (Read Best Pottery Wheel For Kids)

Do I Need Special Bricks For A BBQ?

First, you’ll need to buy a barbeque grill set built to fit inside a brick barbecue. These include a coal tray, a grilling grill tray for cooking, and various accessories. Aside from that, you’ll require your building bricks.

You could ask what kind of BBQ bricks you need to use. Fortunately, practically any type of brick will work for the structure of a barbecue, but firebrick is preferred to line the inside of the grill.

They can resist extreme heat, and because they are dense, they retain heat efficiently, helping to keep the temperature consistent if the fire changes. If you have a pizza-cooking area, you will have a crust like a restaurant.

If you want the whole hog, you can add a smoker to your BBQ, and again, these sorts of bricks keep heat in the smoker as the smoke flavors your foods.

Questions Often Asked

Is it necessary to get planning clearance for a brick BBQ?

A: You do. If you want to build a brick BBQ in your backyard, you’ll need permission from the city.

What is the height of a brick BBQ?

A: A brick BBQ should be at least 3 feet in height.

What is the best way to lay a brick BBQ?

A: Spread the mortar using a trowel before laying bricks on top.

many bricks

How Many Bricks Do I Need To Build a BBQ?

The height of your barbeque purely determines the number of bricks you use. Cooking shouldn’t need you to reach high or bend low. Whether or not you want to build a chimney, you’ll need anywhere from 100 to 650 bricks.

Here’s more information regarding building a BBQ and smoker in your garden or backyard.

Before You Start

  1. Check the Laws in Your Area

When researching local legislation, you’ll need to know the answers to the following three questions:

  1. Is a Building Permit Required?

Is it necessary to engage someone to grade the soil or area on your grill?

  1. How High Can a Chimney Be Built?

Some communities will require that you hire an expert to check the site where you plan to build your structure. This is done to make sure the earth can support the weight.

Building Your Brick Barbeque

This project is relatively straightforward. Because it’s made of brick, you’ll need to be extra careful to ensure that the structure is balanced, especially around the chimney. No need to worry; we will cover that later on.

Choose The Area

Take a walk around your property and note where you want to build your barbeque. However, keep in mind that it must adhere to local ordinances and laws. Barbeques, for example, may not be allowed to be within 10 feet of the house, and some chimneys may not be taller than 3 feet.

When looking for a location, consider:

  • Will I have guests while I cook?
  • Which is a level area in my backyard?
  • Where can I put it so that it won’t be damaged by trees in poor weather?

Suppose you can’t find a level spot to put your barbeque. Before building, most individuals level the ground for the foundations.



  1. Next, build the size of the concrete slab required for your foundation. Use two metal grill grates for this.
  2. Mark it. Place a metal grill grate on the ground and bricks around it. A brick is required on each side of the brick border. They will not lay vertically like the others but horizontally.
  3. Take notes. Make sure you measure from end to end of the horizontal bricks when measuring the breadth of your bricks. Then measure front to back for depth. Make a note of these measures, so you don’t forget them next time.

Pour The Concrete

  1. Clear the area of any rubbish or grass before excavating or pouring the foundation. This will help your project run smoothly.
  2. You must now transfer your measurements to the ground using the same methods. Again, use metal or wooden stakes with a string to do this.
  3. Now you must excavate the entire area. Dig 8” deep. This will help you level the ground and build a load-bearing foundation.
  4. Pour pea gravel. It should be 3” high when spread out. Once you have the proper amount, compact it using a tamper until the site is level.
  5. Use quick-drying cement for this project to get it done faster. Check the manufacturer’s directions to ensure proper mixing.
  6. Pour the cement on top of the gravel to fill the rest of the hole. Work sure the top of the cement is level and smooth with a trowel. Then cure for 48 hours.

Place Bricks

Before laying, you must first prepare the mortar according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

  1. Apply the mortar along the lines you’ve drawn. With your trowel, scoop out a generous amount of mortar. Make sure the mortar is applied in a straight line to the cement.
  2. Take the first brick into the mortar and gently press it in.
  3. More mortar is required. After that, you’ll need to take up your trowel with extra mortar and apply it to the brick’s end. Apply the next brick after that. Make sure to scrape up any excess mortar with your trowel.
  4. Repeat until all of the steps have been completed. Then, follow these procedures until you’ve completed the first course around the barbecue’s base.

Marking Bricks

It’s best to execute a dry run before permanently fixing the bricks to the concrete. Then, place the bricks around the concrete border, leaving approximately 12″ of space between each one to allow for the mortar. (Learn How To Build A Rock Drainage Ditch)

Mark the corners of your barbeque and the location of the walls with chalk. Before you do this, though, double-check that your corners are perfectly 90-degree angles. Then, when you lay your bricks, this marking will serve as a guide.

Lay Your Courses

The remaining courses will be formed on your barbecues’ exterior and back walls.

  1. Apply mortar to the surface. Next, apply mortar to the top of the first course of bricks you just finished laying with your trowel. The first brick should be pressed into the mortar.
  2. A cold chisel was used to cut the brick. If the brick doesn’t fit well, you can cut it with a wet saw or a cold chisel if necessary.
  3. Continue laying bricks until all of the courses have been applied. The number of courses you’ll need varies depending on how high your barbeque is for easy access. Scrape away any excess mortar as you proceed.

Lay Your Final Course

  1. After you lay the bricks, turn a few to form a grill grate support ledge, as seen in outdoor brick barbeque plans, so that you can cook easily.
  2. The brick should protrude from the inside of the grill. Make sure you do this for each level. You need a grate to sit.
  3. Continue putting bricks until the desired height is reached.
  4. Choosing multiple cooking heights allows for more area and different heat intensities. However, when laying the last course of bricks, you must use firm bricks. This ensures the structure is complete and sturdy enough to add the chimney.

Adding Chimney

Municipal building codes govern your chimney’s height. Before you start, check with the local authorities.

Start the brick BBQ smoker chamber at the barbecue’s top. You’ll start building the chimney for your barbecue, where you lay the firm bricks.

The outdoor BBQ flue can be made of metal if desired. You can also use bricks or a flexible hose or pipe. If you choose the hose, make sure it can handle the heat from the smoke and hot air rising.

Include flashing where your chimney meets your grill’s top. Also, where you’ll put the chimney cap. Then seal it with silicone waterproof caulking.

The cap should extend 2 inches beyond the chimney walls. This will help keep out water and wildlife.

How To Build A Brick BBQ With Chimney (2)

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