The Hippo


Jul 19, 2019








The 1-2-BBQ portable, ready-to-light grill. Courtesy photo.


The suggested retail price is $19.99 to $24.99 for the 1-2-BBQ grill and $3 for the 1-2-BBQ Refill Packs. For more information on the product and a full list of stores that carry it, visit You can also find them at and

Grillin’ and chillin’
Local startup launches two-step portable grill

By Angie Sykeny

 Grilling on the go just got easier with a portable, ready-to-light charcoal grill created by a new Manchester-based startup. The grill, called 1-2-BBQ, is made of a carbon steel bucket and chrome plated grill. It comes with a 1.2-pound pouch of hardwood lump charcoal and a lighting device made of paper and wax — everything needed to get a grill going. Just bring a lighter, grilling tongs and some food to throw on.

“Right now, there is no grill on the market [like 1-2-BBQ],” the startup’s CEO Peter Chivers said. “Ninety-nine out of 100 grills don’t have the charcoal included, and there’s almost nothing out there that has zero assembly required and is also reusable.”
Prior to the development and launch of 1-2-BBQ, Chivers and two of his friends — now business partners — had enjoyed tinkering around and inventing new contraptions, and they were always on the hunt for an original business idea. The concept for the 1-2-BBQ came about incidentally while Chivers was maple sugaring in Bradford.
“I needed something to cook on and didn’t have anything, so I just grabbed a sap bucket, stabbed a couple holes in it with a knife and used that to cook some bratwurst,” he said. “It worked so good that I kept it with me in my truck and kept using it again and again.”
The 1-2-BBQ is made entirely of recycled and recyclable materials and uses hardwood lump charcoal, which produces less ash and is all-natural as opposed to charcoal briquettes, which often contain chemical additives. The grill weighs just 4.5 pounds and measures 10 inches high and 12 inches in diameter with 112 square inches of grilling area. While its primary use is grilling food, you can also use it like a portable campfire for warming up and entertaining.
“You can really take it everywhere because it takes up so little space,” Chivers said. “It’s perfect for people who like the outdoors, like to go camping, are adventurous and like to be on the go.”
The product name was inspired by the grill’s simplicity. It takes only two steps to get it going: after you set the grill on an outdoor, sturdy and non-combustible surface, just peel off the label and light a flame into the holes at the bottom of the bucket for three to 20 seconds. Once it ignites, the charcoal takes about 15 minutes to warm up. There is enough charcoal included to grill at 350 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit for up to 45 minutes.
The grill can be reused with a charcoal or wood of your choice or with the 1-2-BBQ Refill Packs, which contain the premium hardwood charcoal and the easy-to-light paper and wax lighting device. Refilling is also a simple, two-step process: after you unwrap the pack, put the lighting device at the bottom of the bucket and the charcoal on top of it, then follow the same grilling instructions for the pre-made 1-2-BBQ.
Currently, you can find 1-2-BBQ products at 25 convenience and general stores, hardware stores and food markets around New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
“We’re going to keep it as local as we possibly can,” Chivers said. “Right now, we just want people to start trying them and give us feedback on the ones we have out there so we can make a better product and hopefully expand to more stores.” 

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