Using a smoker is one of the most enjoyable methods of cooking. It’s hard to beat the rich flavor profiles that come from properly smoked food. Additionally, it is one of the best methods of cooking that allows the cook to enjoy him or herself throughout the experience. All you really need to get started is a smoker or grill, a water pan, coals, aromatic (flavoring) wood, a thermometer, and a well seasoned piece of meat like a pork shoulder, beef brisket, whole chicken, fish like trout or salmon, or ribs of any variety. (For the vegetarians, smoked vegetables and smoked cheeses are delicious, too, but require a slightly different approach that what is necessary for meats.)
Smoking is a method that usually combines long cooking times with low cooking temperatures, creating a product with a sublime texture and delicious flavor. Its origin has been traced to our cavemen ancestors, where meat would be hung in shelters that were mostly enclosed and small enough to hold large quantities of smoke. Likely, early humans observed the flavor differences between smoked and dried meats and later noticed the preserving nature of the smoking process.
There are a variety of methods for smoking: cold smoking, hot smoking, and smoke roasting are a few of the primary ways that people prepare smoked foods. My favorite is hot smoking–l think it is the most accessible to the average home cook.
The general method for smoking involves peeling most of the top layer of fat off the product, and salting lightly about two hours prior to cooking. Give the salt some time to penetrate the muscle, as most of the other seasonings are primarily exterior. Additionally, you can get a meat injecting syringe and add stock or water to add moisture and inhibit drying out. After salting and injecting, season liberally. Use garlic, powdered mustard, pepper, cayenne, ginger, paprika, and brown sugar (suggested seasonings, but almost any will work). Prepare your grill or smoker. In a grill, you should build a fire on one side of the basin, and set a pan of water next to it to provide moisture during the cooking process. Finally, check the temperature of your grill–you want 225F to 250F. If you’re in this zone, you’re ready to cook.
Add your meat, then add a few sticks of aromatic wood. Continue adding wood every 20 minutes for the first hour of cooking, then taper off. Use primarily coals for the last half of cooking. Take notes on your product and adjust as you move forward. Your product is done when the intramuscular and connective tissue has fully broken down. For a pork shoulder, this is anywhere from 195F to 205F, depending on your preference. Research the meat you want to use to determine the best finished temperature. It’s a long process, so plan in advance. But when you’re finished, A rich, crusty bark of seasoning and smoke essence encrusts the exterior, sealing delicious juices and flavor throughout the interior. Anyone can make it happen–to achieve this culinary perfection, you just need the right tools and a bucketful of patience.
Here we recommend a list of Smokers for you to find out the Best Electric Smoker
#1 Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Electric Smoker
Just like magnets, Masterbuilt backyard smokers attract family and friends to enjoy meals together and the Masterbuilt 20070910 30-inch electric smoker is no different. Whether you are preparing beef, chicken, jerky or salmon, people will follow the smoke that signals homemade delicacies. It is no wonder that family and friends usually flock around this digital smoker because of the delightful smoky aroma it produces when making food as you enjoy the good times with those close to you.
Some of the features that this magnificent electric digital smoker include:
Digital controls for the timer and temperature.
Provision of cooking space of about 730 sq. inches with 4 chrome coated racks and a heating element of 800 watts.
Thermostat temperature controls with capabilities of cooking food between 100 to 275 degrees F.
Convenience of loading small wood chips on the side, a top air damper and a removable drip pan.
Suitable smoker for all levels of experience.
Apart from its aesthetic appeal which is simply a marvel to look at, it has many other advantages as listed below.
1. Digital thermometer: With traditional ways of smoking, keeping the right smoker temperature is very hard. This is why the Masterbuilt smoker allows you to set your preferred temperature for smoking your food. The only tasks you will have to do are adjusting and loading more wood onto the wood tray and keeping the contents mopped
2. Proper insulation: Unlike traditional side smokers and most of the other form factors, this smoker is not affected by the outside temperature since it’s nicely chunky and always keeps temperatures within reason.
3. Increased capacity: With its four racks which can allow you to hold chicken, ribs, shoulders and roasts with only two of them, you are sure not to lack space for preparing a hearty meal for guests when they come over.
4. Economy: The Masterbuilt 20070910 smoker not only runs on electricity, but you can also use relatively small amounts of wood. This means that instead of incurring costs of getting charcoal and wood to run it, you can save on cost on both ends.
5. Customer support: The customer support you get with Masterbuilt is second to none. Finding companies which offer the same level of support that Masterbuilt offers is very rare. If a defect arises, they are sure to fix it and get you back to doing what you love, cooking and barbecuing.
6. Timer: This lovely smoker also comes with a 24 hour timer which allows you to set an automatic shut off when barbecuing.
7. Easy to clean: The presence of a removable drip pan allows you to clean faster together with the presence of a mounted grease pan.
8. Easy to use: You only need to plug it, load up the grill with some food, then load some wood chips, set the timer for barbecuing, and then you are good to go. The 1.7 cubic feet of space allow make this grill a must-have.
As with all things, there is bound to be a problem in a machine but these are here are not that big of a problem.
1. Small size: If you are planning on using big cuts of meat, it limits the amount of smoke you can use at any given time.
2. Limited temperature level: It only goes up to 275 degrees F which means that if you want to cook poultry which needs up to 350 degrees F to burn the fat, it will be very difficult and will take very long.
3. Connection limits: If you plug it in using an extension cord, the wattage will be reduced for the Masterbuilt 20070910 smoker.
If you are looking to try smoking but have a limited budget, then this 30 inch electric smokehouse smoker which has set and forget controls could be what you are looking for. More so, this is the solution you need if you are looking to get some food smoked doing only minimal work.
Although it does have some minor problems, this is an exquisite grill to have and its price tag won’t leave you feeling stretched. Thus, if you are looking for an electric digital smoker that you can be using to entertain your guests with, look no further than the Masterbuilt 20070910 30-lnch Electric Smoker.
#2 Char-Broil Electric Vertical Smoker
The Char-boil Electric Vertical Smoker is a kitchen appliance used for smoking different types of foods. It is an electric smoker that features a 1500 watts heating element with three different temperature settings to suit a wide range of foods. It has a large smoking chamber with three adjustable cast iron gates. The cooking grates offer a cooking surface area of about 500 square inches. This smoker offers more control over your smoked foods with the smoker’s fire access door, air damper and porcelain pan for water and wood chips. The grill temperatures are controlled by closing and opening the air dampers. to burn hotter the damper is kept open, while to lower the temperature the damper is partially closed. It also comes with a porcelain ash to collect ash from burning of the wood chips and a grease cup to capture drips from gravy and other sauces.
Some of the smokers great features include:
1. Insulated double walled construction.
This maintains an even temperature in the smoker for even cooking of meals.
2. 1500 watts variable heating element with three different temperature settings.
Provides the versatility need to prepare a variety of dishes.
3. Lid Mounted Temperature gauge
It helps keep track of the pre-heat status of the smoker and to monitor the inside temperature of the grill
4. Grease Trays.
The grease trays captures drips from the dishes for easy clean up afterwards.
5. Three adjustable smoking racks.
They hold the dishes in place to facilitate smoking. They can be tilted so as to provide even smoking for the dishes.
6. Chrome-plated handle.
Provides a stylish look for the smoker. The handle is also heat resistant so as not to burn its users.
Advantages of the Char-boil Electric Vertical Smoker.
This smoker offers great benefits to its users. Some of these benefits include being better at maintaining an even temperature than other smokers such as charcoal smokers. This is attributed to its double-walled insulated construction. The even temperature ensure even smoking of the foods.
It is also easy to use and less laborious compared to other smokers. All you have to do is to set the temperature of the smoker and once the chips start to smoke you set the temperature setting you need and let the dish to smoke. It is thus a lot more convenient to use.
This smoker needs no constant monitoring of the food and the entire smoker once it is operational. One can easily check the water and wood chips without having to disturb the internal temperature of the smoker. It also offers a lesser risk of the foils used to wrap the various foods from catching fire. You can thus wrap you foods in foil and put it in the smoker without the worry that the food, the smoker and your entire kitchen may catch fire and burn.
This smoker comes fully assembled and fitted making it suitable to new users. It also comes with a user manual to guide new users on how to operate this smoker.
This smoker is easy to maintain. To clean it you simply wipe it clean with a damp cloth soaked in detergent.
Disadvantages of The Char-boil Vertical Smoker.
Some of the drawbacks of this smoker is that is suffers corrosion when it is left outside in the rain. To avoid this, the smoker should be kept indoors whenever it is not in use.
It is also a bit bulky and hence might not be easy to carry around.
The water pan is also a bit small and hence it requires one to constantly keep adding water to the water pan.
Despite the few drawbacks, the convenience this smoker offers make it the perfect smoker to have for each and every household. For those living in housing establishments that do not have back yards, then this is the perfect smoker for them as it does not include a open flame. They can use it in the kitchen or at the balcony without worrying of causing fires. It offers even smoking of food due to its adjustable grates and gives the foods a rich smoky flavor. It allows its user to perform other tasks as the dishes are getting smoked since it requires less monitoring. In case you are planning to acquire a new smoker or changing the one you currently have, then the Char-boil vertical Smoker is perfect for you.
#3 Bradley Smokers Original Smoker
Some of the finest restaurants and hotels around the world have been using Bradley smokers to produce their smokehouse cuisine for over 12 years! Now we can bring that epic smokey flavor home. Bradley Smokers is a family run business that began perfecting the craft of quality smoking in the 70’s and continues to carry on that same tradition to this very day. Weather your a smokehouse veteran or novice looking to get your first taste, the Bradley Smokers Original Smoker is sure to give you that smokey flavor experience that you’re craving. From hot smoking to cold smoking, quality meats or cheeses, you just can’t go wrong with a Bradley smoker. Here are just a handful of the features that help make the Bradley Smokers Original Smoker one of the best that money can buy.
1. Durable Design
The stainless steel interior will never rust or corrode so you can be sure to keep on smoking for years to come. One Bradley Smokers Original Smoker owners claim to have left his smoker in the rain, snow, neglected it for months at a time and 10 years later it’s still smoking his meats and cheeses just as it always has!
2. Easy to use
The Bradley Smokers Original Smoker is so easy to use that it is perfect for the smokehouse pro and the everyday Joe. The simplistic temperature system allow for incredibly easy smoke temperature control so you can master any smoker recipe.
3. Automatic Bradley Flavor Bisquette Conveyor
This brilliantly designed conveyor system automatically pushes through the flavor bisquettes at the perfect speed to ensure optimum smoke flavor. The system maximizes the smoke from each bisquette and extinguishes each one before they turn to ash preventing that dreaded flavor effect.
4. Compact Size
The Bradley Smokers Original Smoker stands at an ideal 33.5 x 17.5 x 2025 inches. This compact design has plenty of room to incorporate four removable racks allowing the smoker to hold various types of meats or cheeses at the same time. This also allows the smoker to produce restaurant quality foods without taking up too much space at home.
With so many choices out there it can be difficult to come to a decision. The advantages of going with this particular smoker are easy to recognize. A fine product from a family owned business, designed by people who are passionately dedicated to bring the experience of restaurant quality smokehouse flavor to your home. A level of quality that can only be brought to fruition by those who are genuinely interested in the best possible combination of smoke flavor, temperature and control all in one easy to use, compact design. If you are in the hunt for the best smoker around, The Bradley Smokers Original Smoker should be your first and last choice.
Now as with every product on the market there are some potential drawbacks. The compact design only allows so much space for meats and cheeses at one time. You won’t be able to smoke a whole pig in this model for example. For most people, the size of this smoker will be ideal, but for some hardcore smokers there just might not be enough space. The other feature, that may be considered a flaw by some smokers, is the automated flavor bisquette conveyor. Some old school style smokers claim that the best way to get smoke flavor is by using fresh cut wood for your smoker fuel.
By choosing The Bradley Smokers Original Smoker you are benefiting from generations of experience in the craft. You are getting an easy to use, compact automated system that has proven to be a crowd pleasing favorite. From the novice to the professional, anyone can master the art of smoking quality meats and cheeses with this fine smoker. Don’t be fooled by cheap imitations, for the price and size of this smoker you simply can’t go wrong. Durable design, ease of use, ideal size and the unique automation system push this smoker into the top ranks of the smokehouse world. If some of the top chefs at the finest restaurants and hotels around the world have been able to put their trust in the quality produced by Bradley Smokers, you can feel secure in doing the same.
#4 Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker
Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker is the new choice in smoking technology. Chefs and sportsmen alike can depend upon its precision to prepare the best tasting smoked foods. It is simpler to control and more stronger than any other smoker. With an electronic control, the Automatic Smoke Generator, in addition to a fully insulated cabinet, Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smokers remove the huge temperature fluctuations and interruptions that are found in smoke production that strongly impact the taste of smoked foods.
The features of Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker
The Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker is an outdoor barbecue smoker possessing full digital control for time, temperature, and smoke. It gives 8 hours of controlled smoke; controllable to a maximum of 320 degrees F. It has four cooking racks. The Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker has a measurement of 17 inches by 14 inches by 31 inches; it is 24 inches wide when the generator is fixed. The Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker has four cooking racks for chicken, meat, fish, pork, and more. It is ideal for creating gourmet foods in your home. Internal thermostat, digital Interface, Insulated stainless steel interior, is able to hold up to eight hours of smoke, it has a 1 year warranty from the date of purchase, it has maximum temperatures of two hundred and eighty degrees Fahrenheit, 4 fully supported, removable racks, separate burners for oven and smoke. It retails at $354.49 6 for a brand new smoker and a used one from $307.06. The Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker has an electric power source. It is made of polished stainless steel material. Its color ranges from silver to black. The Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker has 14 x 14 x 31 inches product dimensions and weighs 43 pounds. It has a shipping Weight of 59.8 pounds.
This Food Smoker has all the features of the Original Bradley Electric Smoker, together with the advantages of digital technology. Time, Temperature, and smoke are now wholly controllable so you can choose how much smoke you require, how long your food needs to be smoked, and at what temperature. Ideal for, creating gourmet foods in your home, or enjoying the flavor which smoking brings, the Bradley Digital Smoker offers a simpler and better method to automatically smoke, barbecue, and roast in the outdoors.
Insulated Stainless Steel Interior
The four Rack Bradley Digital Smoker is totally insulated so that you may smoke on cold or hot days and still keep the required cooking temperature. With a full stainless steel interior, the Bradley Digital smoke generator is more capable of an easy clean-up and heat retention.
Separate Oven and Smoke Burners
Digital Smoke Generator
4 Fully-Supported Removable Racks
The main problem of the Bradley smoke generator is its poor temperature control. The way to smoke meat is to have the temperature low and slow. The Bradley smoke generator struggles with that, deviating from the set temperature, going higher. The smoker has a 500W heating element located in the smoke tower which switches on once the smoker’s thermostat drops ten degrees below the fixed temperature. The temperature in the unit’s smoke tower rises quickly once the heater switches on however the thermostat lags behind, permitting the actual temperature to rise above what is needed. The temperature might be some forty degrees or more above the smoke generator’s thermostat reads. This is a serious problem if you are utilizing a sugar based rub, since it will begin to burn past 240 to 250F.
The Bradley Smoker is a very slick little product with an automatic smoke generator and a digital temperature control, utilizing a wood chip biscuit feeder. It is manufactured in the Orient and take after one of those small low cost refrigerators complete with plastic trim. Its interior is lined with thin gauge Stainless Steel, and it has four thin gauge racks. It is light weight without the smoke generator fixed. It is easy to move around and fairly straight forward to assemble.
The Bradley smoke generator utilizes lightly packed disks made up of small wood chips. These are distributed by Bradley in varying wood types. The Bradley smoke generator heats them on a tiny plate until they smoke. After twenty minutes another is fixed into place, displacing the used up bisquette into a water tray, short of putting it to ashes. A tube magazine holds enough bisquettes to be able to last for many hours.
#5 Smoke Hollow 30162E Electric Smoker
Easy to operate, powerful and compact, this is one of the best electric smokers available on the market today. It comes with a 1500 W heater and a high temperature wood-chip box. Unlike most smokers which can take up whole rooms, this small-sized smoker not only helps save space but also delivers fantastic performance for its affordable price. With its multiple temperature settings and porcelain coating, not only does it remove a lot of operational guesswork but also helps provide long-lasting quality performance.
1. The Smoke Hollow 30162E measures a compact 17 ” x 31 ” x 15 “, thus allowing you to set it up without having to sacrifice a huge amount of space. At the same time, its internal dimensions are big enough to fit in large quantities of meat and vegetables.
2. A sturdy welded steel construction to protect against outside temperature fluctuations. The insulated, double-layered steel walls can maintain consistent internal cooking temperatures even at the coldest winter temperatures.
3. A powerful 1,500 W heat source with a wood-chip box that can reach up to very high temperatures. The heating element is powerful enough to work on a variety of meat, vegetables, poultry or fish
4. The Smoke Hollow 30162E comes with two chrome plated cooking grids and 3 temperature settings. The grids can be fixed at different levels of the smoker, allowing for a more customizable experience. The temperature settings are also easy to operate and the temperature gauge helps find the perfect temperature level to cook your meat just as you want it.
5. A porcelain coating on the water pan that is resistant to corrosion or rust, no matter how frequently used This makes for a long-lasting and highly durable product.
6. A magnetic door latch system that makes sure that the door is properly closed, thus saving up on time and improving efficiency.
6. Two conveniently placed handles to help you move around the smoker with ease.
1. In terms of value for money, there is hardly a better smoking unit to be found. Unlike other electric smokers, this particular model delivers solid bang for your buck performance while at the same time being easy on the wallet.
2. The Smoke Hollow 30162E’s small size is a huge asset when it comes to saving up space. Most smokers take up a significant amount of space and can be a hassle to move around. You can easily set this one up in a room without sacrificing on space or even move it outside whenever you feel the need.
3. The high quality wood-chip box is able to sustain high levels of temperature and cook pretty much any variety of meat or fish. The porcelain coating prevents corrosion and rust, facilitating long-term use and making this one of the most efficient electric smokers on the market.
4. Regardless of how cold or hot it might be outside, the insulation mechanism is able to maintain consistent internal temperatures. That means you can take it outside to cook your meat even on freezing winter evenings.
5. Unlike most electric smokers, it is very easy to operate and maintain. You can use any wood chip of your choice and also, cleaning is effortless. Moreover, it comes with replaceable parts which means it will last for years.
1. While smoke leakage is not a major issue and a common complaint with electric smokers the door seal does sometime allow smoke to leak out. Too much leakage will lower the temperature hence this can be a problem. However, such complaints are few and far between and may be directed at isolated faulty units instead of reflecting the actual design
2. For longer cooking sessions, some monitoring may be required to replenish the smoke box. It takes about 30 minutes for the burner to finish off a full-capacity smoke box.
The Smoke Hollow 30162E is a high-performing and dependable unit that can withstand frequent use and endure for years. The variety of features it offers, coupled with the affordable price, makes it a fantastic entry level unit. It can handle a wide range of meat, fish and poultry, providing deliciously juicy and flavorful results. Able to maintain consistent internal temperatures even in the most icy-cold weather, it is especially attractive as a winter smoker. It is also a great choice for beginners as it is extremely simple to operate, with its easy temperature modulation and adjustable cooking grids.
Packing plenty of punch at an affordable price, overall, you can’t go wrong with this electric smoker.
why you should use eletric smoker
Long gone are the days when people had to collect fuel woods to smoke their chicken, beef, salmon, jerky or meat and then sit for many hours monitoring it till it was ready. Today, because of technological advancements, people can now achieve the same or better cooking results with the use of electric smokers.
Whether you opt to use a vertical or horizontal smoker, you should ensure that you only use the vertical smoker when you have properly insulated it to prevent heat loss during those cold months. On the other hand, you can use the horizontal smoker during any season as they are more durable and do not take plenty of space.
In as much as this revolutionary method of smoking meat is available, many people still do not know how to use an electric smoker.
How to use an electric smoker
Before you even start smoking your beef or jerky, there are some steps which you should observe as outlined below.
Step 1: Get the smoker ready
Prior to do doing anything, you should first cure or season it. Usually, the process will entail coating the racks and surfaces inside with cooking oil, and thereafter turning on the machine and letting it run for about two hours to burn off any dust, residues and solvents. Thereafter, you can let it cool off by opening it.
Step 2: Prep the food
Electric smokers are usually perfect for smoking fish, seafood, meat or poultry. As the electric smoker gets ready, you should add flavor to your meat by seasoning it with dry rubs and spices or you can marinade it overnight to ensure the seasoning properly soaks in your meat.
Step 3: Use of wood chips
Most of the electric smokers have been designed to use wood chips to achieve that fantastic smoky and textured flavor in your foods. Usually, the wood chips will be found under the heat source. Ideally, you should use four cups of wood chips for five hours of smoking. However, you should be aware that this will cool the electric smoker unless you have an offset smoker.
You can also use water to tenderize and add flavor to the meat by adding aromatic ingredients such as wine, apple juice, beer or orange peel to the water pan
Step 4: Temperature selection
Once you have done the above steps, you will need to select your desired temperature. Usually, the smoky flavored and well textured food will be ready by setting the timer to about 3 to 8 hours. Additionally, you should also use a meat thermometer to continually check on the meat by inserting it into the center to find out what its internal temperature is and to enable you determine how long you should wait before it is ready.
Benefits of electric smokers
In addition to following of the above steps which will enable get the smoky flavored food you desire, electric smokers will allow you to rip many other benefits from their use.
1. Health: Not only will using an electric smoker allow you to retain the taste of the meat, but it also allow you to add distinct flavors which can only be found in smoked meats and beefs – which is far better than deep frying. If you are health conscious, then buying an electric smoker can be the best investment.
2. Easy to use: The availability of preset tabs and control panels enable you to smoke or grill your food with utmost ease even if you are a beginner.
3. Reliable and convenient: On top of the ease of transporting them to wherever you want to smoke your food, they are also versatile in the fuel they use allowing you to choose your desired fuel be it hickory, plum, cedar, cherry or alder.
4. Variation of wide range and temperature: You can also program your electric smoker to cook various kinds of beefs or meats. Whereas salmons and fish will require low heat, others like meat or beef will need relatively high temperature all of which can be achieved with an electric smoker. More so, you can even set the duration you want to cook your food
5. Suitable for both parties and personal use: Whether you want to use them for personal or commercial use, this is possible. In fact, you can even use them to entertain guests at parties. You can simply set the time and temperature and you will be able to smoke, grill and prepare the barbeque for your guests with much ease.
Without a doubt, good food brings the hearts of people together. Whether you are planning to have an awesome time with family and friends or invite guests over for a barbeque, using an electric smoker is the best investment you can make as they come in various shapes and sizes. Not only can they add some magic to your food, but they can add flavor and depth when you prepare your food using the above steps. More so, you are assured that no traces of ashes will be left over with these great smokers.