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DIY Tutorial: “Mini Charcoal Grill Trio” Centerpiece

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mini bbq centerpiece for a summer grilling party - diy tutorial

I really wanted to feature something creative & unique as the table centerpiece for our brand new Summer Grilling Party theme (posting later today!!), so my first thought was to go REALLY literal and create some miniature charcoal grills. Luckily, the shape of charcoal grills makes them very easy to emulate using inexpensive & easily accessible materials – hooray!

First, I found 3 melamine bowls at Target that matched our party color palette perfectly, then filled them with charcoal and topped them with painted bamboo skewers for the “grill” tops. Oh ya… can’t forget orange sprinkles for the “embers”! ;)

diy tutorial for a mini charcoal grill table centerpiece

Old shot glasses from our cabinet were flipped upside down and coated in shiny silver spray paint to create the bases for the grills. (The tallest shot glass was a joke gift that my husband had received a while back with a rival football team’s logo on it, so he was pretty happy to see that one “go”!) Finally, little hot glue to attach the stands to the grills and – voila! The modern Mini Charcoal Grill Trio was complete.

I’m pretty happy with how these little guys turned out… wouldn’t they be cute for a camping party theme or Tailgate too?! Read on for the step-by-step instructions…

mini bbq grill centerpiece for a summer party


Mini Charcoal Grill Centerpiece (DIY Tutorial)

by Jennifer Sbranti

– 3 Melamine Bowls (mine were 5″, 6″, and 6″)
– Charcoal Briquettes (the kind without lighter fluid), partially crushed
– Orange sprinkles for “embers”
– Shot glasses or small candle holders for “stands” in 3 different heights (*see note)
– Brilliant Metallic Silver Spray Paint
– Black Spray Paint
– Bamboo Skewers (approximately 5 sticks per grill)
– Hot Glue Gun
– Strong scissors or wire cutters

*Note: For my “stands” I used a tall shot glass, a regular sized shot glass, and a Tiny Stainless Steel Bowl from IKEA that was leftover from the DIY bbq place card holders


Partially crush a few charcoal briquettes for each bowl and set aside. Paint the bamboo skewers black and let dry. Paint your bases silver and let dry.

Lay the painted skewers on top of each bowl to figure out size & placement, then trim them down to size using strong scissors or a wire cutter, but don’t glue them on yet. (My bowls were 5”, 6” and 6” and I used 5 skewers per “grill”.)

Fill bowls about half way with crushed charcoal, then hot glue the trimmed black skewers to the top of the bowls to create the “grills”. Add orange sprinkles to charcoal for “embers”.

Flip your painted silver “stands” upside down and use hot glue to attach them to each grill.

Arrange in a trio for your table centerpiece. They look cute as they are, or you can top them with signs and decorative “food” – like the mini wooden “hot dogs” pictured here! (The hot dogs are actually just wooden dowels painted red & cut down to size.)


diy charcoal grill centerpiece for a summer grilling party

Stay tuned for more ideas from this new theme coming soon! :)

diy charcoal grill centerpiece


  1. Michelle - I DO invitations by michelle May 22, 2012 at 11:48 am

    Ummm…cutest DIY ever! You are so creative + clever! LOVE!!

  2. Cindy May 22, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Cute! Seriously, how do you come up with so many cute ideas?!

  3. Danielle-Cutie Putti Paperie May 22, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    This is the most adorable idea!!!! Are those crayons on top to look like hotdogs? I love this!!!! This would be perfect for a camping party!!! So cute

    • jenn s. May 24, 2012 at 5:02 pm

      Thanks, Danielle! The “hot dogs” are actually wooden dowels painted red. :) And I totally agree about the camping party!

  4. Deanna at Mirabelle Creations May 22, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    These are fantastic! What a great idea for cookout season!

  5. Jennifer ~ BellaGrey Designs May 22, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Jenn ~ these are SUPER CUTE!!!! Fabulous idea!!!

  6. raquel Paiva May 24, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Blog Perfect!!!!

  7. maryvan meter farris May 24, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    This is such a a fun theme and very creative, I was curious where you got the mini grills to make the place settings?

    • jenn s. May 25, 2012 at 8:45 am

      Thanks! I actually made the mini grill place card holders from tiny stainless steel bowls from IKEA, lollipop sticks, and buttons for the “wheels”. Just hot glue the lollipop stick legs and buttons to the upside down bowls then fill them with crushed charcoal (or crushed chocolate cookies) and “fire” place cards, which you can download for free right here. (and if you were actually referring to the paper grills on the place settings, you can download those at the same place!)


  8. […] printables will quickly elevate your typical pot luck to a full on party!  She also has a post for DIY mini-grill decor!  Check out her free printable suite […]

  9. Antoinette Belton June 2, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    You are absolutely amazing! I love this theme…will be using this for Father’s Day Cookout:-)

  10. Patricia Ward-Tippett June 6, 2012 at 1:17 am

    Oh…my…god…these are AMAZING!

  11. 5 Tischdeko-Ideen für die Grillparty May 2, 2013 at 1:52 am

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  12. Lyrik Engel May 19, 2014 at 7:42 am

    aww…the site I surfed from made it sound like you could use these…Make Mini Grills for the Back Deck
    Mini grills are wonderful. You can put them right on the patio table and sit and relax while you cook. Or, you could allow everyone to cook their own food, giving you the night off completely. These are perfect for smaller cookouts when you have just a small handful of friends and family over or if you really wanted to create several, you could use them for larger get-togethers as well. This particular one is a centerpiece that features three mini grills and it’s perfect for the backyard patio.
    DIY Instructions and Project Credit – HWTM Blog

    faked me out :(

  13. Jaquline Dittmann May 18, 2016 at 5:20 pm

    Yea… what a disappointment…

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