First used and invented in Mexico and Spain, the chiminea is traditionally used for heating and cooking and was often made of clay. Today, we tend to use metals, and they are used more for heating outdoor spaces. Getting a metal chiminea can really transform your backyard and is great for all kinds of events!
Table of Contents
- Why do I need a Metal Chiminea?
- Choosing a Metal Chiminea
- Our Choices for Best Metal Chimineas
- 1. Blue Rooster Prairie Fire Cast Aluminum Chiminea
- 2. Bali Outdoors Cast Iron Chiminea Outdoor Fire Pit
- 3. Blue Rooster Garden Cast Aluminum Chiminea
- 4. Better Homes & Gardens Copper Wood-Burning Fire Pit
- 5. Amabel Steel Wood Burning Outdoor Chiminea
- 6. Sunnydaze Black Steel Outdoor Chiminea Fire Pit
- 7. Angled Obelisk Weathering Steel Chiminea
- What type of metal is best in a chiminea?
- Metal vs Clay Chiminea: Which is better?
- To Summarize
Why do I need a Metal Chiminea?
A metal chiminea is a great addition to any outdoor space you are looking to spice up! You may be asking what a chiminea is, and I bet you have seen them before! A chiminea is a stand-alone, front-loading oven or fireplace. Traditionally, they are made out of clay but are more commonly made out of metal today. They are easy to use, burn clean, and require less attention. So whether you want to heat an outside area, use it for cooking, or both, a chiminea is a great option that will add some flair to your next get-together!
Choosing a Metal Chiminea
When choosing a metal chiminea, make sure you think about a few things. For one, decide what you intend to use it for. Will it be a simple fire pit? Will you cook with it? These will influence the built-in designs of some chimineas. Next, how big of an area do you intend to put your new chiminea in? A small chiminea may not be the right choice if you want to heat a large area.
Think about what style you would like as well. Going with a traditional steel or clay chiminea may be good if you want a more classic look, but if you are a fan of the more modern and stylish aesthetic, there are plenty of options for that as well. Choosing the right chiminea may seem overwhelming, but if you stick to these basics, you will find the right one for you!
Our Choices for Best Metal Chimineas
1. Blue Rooster Prairie Fire Cast Aluminum Chiminea
Size: 19″D x 19″W x 44″H, 48 lbs
Best reasons to buy: Body doesn’t rust, perfect for cooking, large mouth opening
Best reasons to pass: High price, the door may rust
The Blue Rooster Prairie Fire Cast Aluminum Chiminea is a great sleek traditional design and perfect for those who want a simple addition to any outdoor space. The black paint blends in with any aesthetic, and its smaller size makes it perfect for those who don’t have a ton of space. Aluminum is not only durable, but also does not rust. This means if it rains, you do not have to worry as much about the chiminea getting ruined. This chiminea also comes with a grate for cooking, and the door is large enough on the front to be able to roast marshmallows or hotdogs!
You may run into some issues, however. The front door is made from a lower-quality material that is susceptible to rusting. The high price of this chiminea may also be an issue if you are wanting something a little more budget-friendly. But, if you have a little more to spend, and want something small and attractive, this might be the right pick for you!
Material: Cast Iron
Size: 22″D x 22″W x 45″H, 40 lbs
Best reasons to buy: Good price, simple, sturdy
Best reasons to pass: Odd design, rusting
Price: $179 (Retail: $200)
If you want a more antique style when considering your chiminea, this may be the choice for you! This chiminea also has a smaller size and comes with a large area for your fire. The Bali Outdoors Cast Iron Chiminea Outdoor Fire Pit, as the name implies, is better suited for use as a firepit, rather than an oven or wood-fired grill. The price for this fire pit is also a much better deal if you want the chiminea style but without the fancy features.
The odd design of this chiminea may not be what you are looking for. The metal mesh that wraps around the body of this chiminea is not a traditional look and can cause ash and sparks to fly out if it is windy. This product is also prone to rusting if not cared for. Just like a cast iron skillet, this chiminea must be covered or moved if it is raining, and can easily get destroyed because of this.
3. Blue Rooster Garden Cast Aluminum Chiminea
Size: 22 x 22 x 44 inches
Best reasons to buy: Beautiful rose design, rain deflector, cooking accessories included
Best reasons to pass: Price, non-traditional shape
This Blue Rooster Garden Cast Aluminum Chiminea, like its counterparts, is an amazing all-around addition to your outdoor space. This particular chiminea is a medium size and comes with an absolutely stunning rose and hummingbird design cast into it. The top also has a rain deflector, so you don’t have to worry about water getting to your fire!
A unique feature of this chiminea is its cone shape. For those wanting a more traditional look, this may not be your choice. The high price may also not be budget-friendly. However, for an amazing-looking and functioning product, you really can't go wrong here!
Material: Copper and Mild Steel
Size: 23.5″L x 23.5″W x 39″H, 44 lbs
Best reasons to buy: Good price, many accessories
Best reasons to pass: Rust, color
A great all-around chiminea, this Better Homes & Gardens Copper Wood-Burning Fire Pit has all the features you could want. It comes with all kinds of accessories for making the best fire and has a great price compared to other chiminea-styled fire pits and ovens.
With the copper color, this fire pit may not be everyone, since it can clash with some other aesthetics. As many of you also know, copper tends to rust and become green, and steel also rusts. By taking care of your chiminea, this can be prevented. However, if you want something budget-friendly, and perfect for having a nice fire, look no further.
Size: 75” H x 30” W x 30” D, 50 lbs
Best reasons to buy: Antique design, weather resistant, large
Best reasons to pass: Weathering steel, high price
Price: $479.99 (Retail: $754.80)
The largest chiminea so far in this list, the Amabel Steel Wood Burning Outdoor Chiminea, has a very traditional design. It comes with a weathered steel design, where allowing it to be exposed to the elements is encouraged, which causes it to rust and look more rustic and antique. This design, however, is prone to constant change if not protected while not in use. Using a cover is highly recommended if you want to prevent this.
The high price point of this chiminea, even while on sale, is a feature that may turn you away. For a product of this size, quality, and uniqueness, however, you can do no wrong. The front opening is very large and open, allowing you to fill it with more wood for a hotter fire. A little rust and character may not be such a bad thing if you want something different!
6. Sunnydaze Black Steel Outdoor Chiminea Fire Pit
Material: Alloy Steel
Size: 16.5″D x 31″W x 66″H, 20 lbs
Best reasons to buy: Lightweight, sleek design, happy medium
Best reasons to pass: Few accessories, thin metal, rust
The Sunnydaze Black Steel Outdoors Chiminea Fire Pit is one of the lightest and most stylish fire pits you can add to your backyard. The light material is able to easily be moved to a different location, and with a black color, it will blend in anywhere. Like some other fire pit chimineas, it has a wire mesh that wraps around it for more radiant heat and viewing.
Like other steel designs, this chiminea is prone to rust if not taken care of, and it is made of a very thin metal that can end up with rust holes if you aren't careful. It also does not come with a ton of accessories sometimes simple is better! For the price and simple fire pit design, there is no reason this is not a great option! If you want a simple, overall chiminea for casual use, this is the best choice for you!
7. Angled Obelisk Weathering Steel Chiminea
Material: Alloy Steel
Size: Small: 49″H, 17″W, 17″L
Large: 63″H, 22″W, 22″L
Best reasons to buy: Good price for product, simple, large and small sizes available
Best reasons to pass: Weathering steel
Price: $398.00 – $528.00
Last but most certainly not least, is the Angled Obelisk Weathering Steel Chiminea. Featuring a traditional design in two different sizes, this chiminea is perfect to add to your outdoor spaces. While not great to cook on, the simple design of this chiminea is great for making fires or roasting marshmallows. Offering a great price for what you will receive, this is the best traditional, all-purpose fire pit chiminea on this list.
The weathering steel material may not be right for you, however. Just like the Amabel Steel Wood Burning Outdoor Chiminea, the chiminea comes pre-oxidized and will rust more when exposed to the weather. For those who don’t want to stress about getting their chiminea wet, weathering steel is not going to be the best choice. If you don’t mind making sure it is covered when not in use, for the price and design, this is the best large or small traditional-style chiminea you can buy!
What type of metal is best in a chiminea?
When deciding on what metal is best for your chiminea, it is important to consider what it will be used for. For cooking, cast iron or aluminum is going to be the best, as these metals are very commonly found in your standard cookware such as pots and pans. Another good thing about cast iron and aluminum is that they will not rust if exposed to weather or rain. This doesn't mean you should leave them uncovered, however. Taking care of them and covering them when not in use will help keep them running for years.
Steel and copper are going to be best for those who want to use their chiminea as more of a fire pit. When referring to steel, this can mean stainless steel, weathering steel, or sheet metal, all of which are similar. Although steel and copper will rust, which means these require more care than other types of chimineas, it does not mean you should shy away from these metals. They are durable and can give a vintage look to your chiminea after some time and use.
Maybe you want to go super traditional, and in this case, maybe clay is the way to go. Clay is often not recommended for long-term use, however, as it tends to crack and fall apart when moved.
Metal vs Clay Chiminea: Which is better?
Clay is the traditional material chimineas are made out of and are great if you want to do basic cooking and heating. However, clay chimineas are notorious for cracking and just being fragile overall. They also take more work, as they typically must be made where they will sit permanently, since they can break if moved.
Metal is going to be your go-to material for a chiminea. With certain materials like cast iron and aluminum, you can not only use them to cook, but also heat large areas. Steel and copper are going to mainly be used as a fire pit but can also be cooked on in a pinch. Metal provides a more modern and stylish look to your backyard or patio, and is typically lighter, meaning it can be moved around much easier.
A chiminea can make any space more enjoyable, and picking the right one can seem confusing. Here are our rankings based on certain factors from the list above:
Most Expensive: Amabel Steel Wood Burning Outdoor Chiminea
Best Overall Value (in terms of functionality and price): Angled Obelisk Weathering Steel Chiminea
Best for Cooking and heating: Blue Rooster Garden Cast Aluminum Chiminea
Best for Fire Pit: Sunnydaze Black Steel Outdoors Chiminea Fire Pit
1. Which metal is best when choosing a chiminea?
For cooking and heating: Cast iron or aluminum
For heating and/or a fireplace: Steel or copper
2. Where to buy the best chimineas?
Amazon is always a great resource, or consider any of the products or brands mentioned here!