Hibachi Grill, a brief history.

Cooking food over fire and coal has been around since the very beginning of human history, when hunting was the main source of food.

Even though they didn’t know it back then, in today’s terms, they were kind of grilling or barbecuing the food, and in this day and age, it is still among the most popular methods of preparing a wide variety of culinary delights.

Let’s take a trip to Japan and see how they used to heat their homes back in the day. This is where Hibachi Grills come in as they are one of the traditional Japanese heating devices that are still popular among not just the people in Japan, but also in other parts of the world like the US.

According to historians, the hibachi grill was initially used to heat the homes as the winter seasons in Japan can be really cold. The houses were made of thick paper and wood, resulting in the need for a heating source to keep the residents warm during the freezing nights.

Old house from Japan

Hibachi Grills, being relatively inexpensive and easy to carry, had hot coal placed inside of them, allowing the heat to spread throughout its surroundings.

Did you know that the word ‘Hibachi’ in Japanese literally means ‘Fire Bowl’?

It is because of the effective heating capability of the Hibachi Grill that made it so successful across Japan.

However, once the Hibachi had a grill placed over it that could provide adequate heat for cooking food, it was later transformed into the Hibachi Grill we know and love today.

As its name literally means ‘fire bowl’ in Japanese, the fire inside it can be successfully utilized to cook meat and veggies.

What is a Hibachi Grill?

Now that you have some background knowledge of the Hibachi Grill, you must be wondering what it actually is and what is it made of?

The traditional Hibachi Grill is a small to medium-sized cylindrical, open-topped, round shaped bowl with a grill placed on top. It is a simple box or bowl with legs underneath as to prevent anything it sits on from getting burned and is made from materials that are fire and heatproof, mostly porcelain and clay.

Did you know that the Hibachi grill was first documented in Japan in the year around 79–1185 AD (the Heian Period)? That’s almost a 1000 years ago!

Over time the crafters started making Hibachi Grill in various shapes and sizes with more decorative versions and stylish finishes.

At first the Hibachi Grill was used for heating in the higher society homes in Japan, but it’s useful property of keeping the household warm spread its use to the common people as well.

What is a Hibachi Grill made Of?

As mentioned before, the Hibachi Grill in the olden days was made of fireproof ceramic and clay that allowed the heat to rise at the opening and not get dispersed through the sides or bottom.

The quality of the materials had to be really good as that was the only way to ensure the heat did not escape at once. As the winter seasons in Japan can get really cold, the Hibachi was used for heating purposes in a safe and secure manner.

Even when the people started using the Hibachi for grilling purposes, the materials used remained the same. The only addition was the cast iron grill on top to put the meat and vegetables for cooking.

Nowadays, you can find the Hibachi Grill in many sizes, shapes and forms. If you like to stay true to the traditional method of grilling and barbecuing on coal, you will most probably be buying a Hibachi Grill made of firebricks, clay or ceramic.

Clay Hibachi Grill

If you are more into the modern way of grilling over an electric or gas fire, the Hibachi Grill most suitable for you will be the one made of a heavy and sturdy pre-seasoned cast iron. These come in different verities such as electric, gas and simple ones that require coal.

How did the Hibachi Grill make it all the way to America?

It was during World War II when the Hibachi Grill was first used by the Japanese in the field, and it was from here that it made its way to the US.

Because Hibachi Grills are easy to carry, they were used by the Japanese Imperial army to prepare food when far away from their base of operations. Its inexpensive design and manufacturing allowed it to be a cheap source of preparing meals.

During the war when Japanese bases were taken over by US forces, they found these contraptions all over the base with ash and smell of food on them.

This is where Americans first made contact with the Hibachi Grill as they asked the captured Japanese soldiers about these and they told them how they used these for heating and cooking their food.

Soldier second world war eating

It was a very interesting piece of equipment that intrigued the US soldiers back then and they brought it back to America as souvenirs from the war.

As you know, Americans love to grill and barbecue in the open outdoors and if there is anything that can make doing that in an easy, cheap and simple way, it is the Hibachi Grill.

They were quick to adopt the Hibachi Grill into our society and even though it has taken a long time for it to get widely recognized and acclaimed, it is among a valuable piece of history as well!

Grilling & Barbecuing in the USA.

Even though Americans have been grilling and barbecuing since the colonial times, it was in the 17th century when the first official documentation mentions the word ‘barbecue’.

Americans love a slab of pork ribs cooked to perfection over a fire and this love has been established and ongoing since time memorial. This is one of the reasons why you will find most Americans having grillers at their home as it is the most enjoyable way for them to have a good time with their loved ones.

Did you know that the first recorded mention of the word barbecue in America was in 1672 by George Washington himself?

Cooking food over burning wood and coal is a part of American tradition, deeply and strongly entwined with the culture of the land and its people.

This is one of the reasons why the Hibachi Grill is growing in popularity in the United States as they now have a way of preparing food in a way that is easier and simpler than traditional grilling and barbecuing.

Man with flag on 4th of July

Americans love outdoor cooking so much that on the 4th of July; it is tradition to have a barbecue grill with friends and family in the backyards of homes to celebrate their independence day and anyone not doing so is considered to be unpatriotic!

As you can see, outdoor barbecuing and grilling, to the people of America, is more than just a simple way of cooking and eating, it is an integral part of their lives as it signifies their freedom and liberty!

Why Americans love Hibachi Grills!

There is nothing more enjoyable for us Americans than the sound of simmering meat and vegetables being grilled over fiery coal. We humans have a history of cooking food over a fire as it brings us back to the old ages when man lived in caves, hunted animals and prepared them over an open fire.

The biggest reason why Americans love the Hibachi Grill is that it allows them the convenience, and reminds of a much simpler time.

Old house from Japan

The ‘traditional’ Hibachi Grill has no electric or gas powered burner, meaning that it can only be filled with fiery coal as the source of the heat for cooking.

However, nowadays you can find many companies that are making Hibachi Grill that have gas or electric burners with adjustable vents and other fancy features. But when it comes to experiencing the true taste of wood and fire, the traditional is the one which the people go for.

Did you know that Americans spend more than $800 million on meat in just the two weeks that lead up to the 4th of July!

It is because of their simplicity of not requiring any moving/adjustable parts, dangerous fuels, or any other flammable materials that makes them so great. This makes the Hibachi perfectly safe for grilling during camping and picnics.

Unlike other grillers that require you to go through an entire manual to learn how to set them up, the Hibachi can be simply carried wherever you go and it will be ready to be used for a nice and tasty session of grilling!

Why you should have a Hibachi Grill.

There is absolutely no doubt that if you are reading this, you too are a person who loves to cook outdoors. Having a grill and barbecue in the backyard is something that almost everyone loves to do with friends and family.

Young woman in the garden in summertime

It is one of the best ways to invite people over and have a good time while everyone devours the scrumptious meat and veggies simmered over a fire.

If you have a house with a big backyard then having a Hibachi Grill is a no-brainer. Preparing food outside is one of the joys you can have with your loved ones over the holidays. This is especially true for those who love to stay true to the American tradition of grilling and barbecuing and would like to pass the tradition on to their kids.

With a Hibachi Grill, you can do just that in an easy, safe and affordable manner.

Even if you are not living in a house with a backyard but in an apartment, you can easily use the Hibachi Grill on your balcony. The best thing about Hibachi Grills has always been their easy transportability and small footprint, making them ideal for those who do not have ample space.

Hibachi Grills come in different sizes so you can choose one that suits you best.

If you are expecting to have a lot of people over for holidays or other parties then it is best to have a large-sized grill.

Hibachi Grill backyard set

Or if you prefer everyone cooking for themselves, then having a few smaller ones will be perfect as you can assign a couple for each small Hibachi Grill and they will have a fun good time preparing their own meat and veggies.

Because of their ease of use and small footprint, you can easily store the Hibachi Grill in your garage or storage room without it taking a lot of space.

Did you know that in Japan the Hibachi grill most commonly goes by the name Shichirin?

Why the sudden rise in Hibachi Restaurants?

As you now know how Americans love to grill and barbecue, they also love to go out for dine-outs with friends and family to restaurants and this is especially true when it comes to eating something different.

The restaurants that offer food cooked on Hibachi Grills has been of great interest to the American people as they love to try out new and different varieties of meat cooked over fire.

Hibachi restaurant

Because of this interest, many entrepreneurs have invited traditional Japanese Hibachi chefs from Japan to come over to the United States and let the people here taste the amazing delicacies.

Every region has their own unique style of cooking and taste and the same goes for Japan, so when the people started eating such a different variety of meat cooked by the way of the traditional Hibachi Grill, it was an instant success!

Hibachi is similar to Teppanyaki where the guests sit around a table that has a chef in the middle with a huge pan who cooks the food right in front of them while also performing some very entertaining feats with the fire and food.

Create the same taste at home.

If you have not tried any of the restaurants that offer Hibachi grilled food then you need not worry, you can get yourself a Hibachi Grill and cook the meat and veggies in your own home!

The wide range of Hibachi Grills ensures that you can get the right one for yourself and your family as they come in various shapes and sizes. However, it is highly recommended that you buy the traditional Hibachi Grill that requires coal for cooking the yummy meat!


We started our journey in the ancient times and came all the way to the modern age. Throughout that whole period there was one thing that stayed the same, people love food! Or in other words, people love to cook food over a fire!

Hibachi Grill with flames

It is because of this reason that barbecuing and grilling will never go out of style as the taste and the experience that you get from preparing your food outdoors over the flames is something that simply cannot be replicated!

It is for this reason that the Hibachi Grill has become so famous in the United States, as the people of this country love nothing more than to prepare their meat and vegetables over a grill with a fire burning underneath.

If you too are looking for an excitingly traditional way to cook your food, then the hibachi grill is the way to go! So why not get yourself a Hibachi Grill and start grilling!