Pelletization of low value added biomass materials such as furfural residue (FR) and sawdust was performed by using a lab scale pelletizer. Effects of moisture content (MC), particle size and a binder on quality parameters (e.g. pellet density, strength and hardness) and on energy consumption were investigated. Quality of pellets was analysed and compared. MC was found to be the more dominant parameter affecting pellet density, strength and hardness of furfural residue pellets (FRPs) and sawdust pellets (SPs), followed by particle size and a binder. Highest particle density of 1.419 g/cm3 for FRPs (0.5–1.41 mm) and 1.243 g/cm3 for SPs (0.25–0.5 mm) was achieved at MC of 8% and 18%. Highest decrease in relaxed density was observed at MC of 13% for FRPs and 28% for SPs. True density of FRPs and SPs made from particles of 0.25–0.5 mm was found higher than 0.5–1.41 mm. The highest strength and hardness (6.29 MPa and 401.3 N/mm2) for FRPs was achieved at 5.5% MC and particles 0.25–0.5 mm. Optimum strength (6.03 MPa) and hardness (96.06 N/mm2) for SPs was obtained at 18% MC and particles 0.25–0.5 mm. The lowest energy consumption (16.16 J/g) for FRPs (0.25–0.5 mm) and 20.22 J/g for SPs (0.5–1.41 mm) was achieved at MC of 13% and 28%. Addition of binding agent to FR sawdust decreased energy consumption of FRPs and SPs. SPs quality was enhanced with the use of a binder. Heating value of FRPs were found higher than SPs.