Smoking is considered as the healthier way to cook meat and other food. Furthermore, this ultimate method helps to maintain a tender and flavorful taste as you wish. So, if this is your first time to smoke, what you need is to get yourself the best smoker for beginners. This machine doesn’t only allow you to cook like a pro but also become a great investment in a long run.
Of course, buying a good smoker is not an easy job. And when searching for information on the Internet, you will be surrounded an array of smokers for sure. But since you’re here, I will introduce you a complete guide of what you’re looking for.
Now, let’s start!
Learn Types of Smokers First
As a newbie for shopping the suitable smoker, the first important thing you need to understand thoroughly is how many kinds of smokers are available on the market. Well, there are five main smokers including pellet, propane/gas, electric, charcoal and offset. Each comes with different features, advantages and disadvantages that are appropriate for each different taste.
And to pick up the ideal kind for you, down here now!
According to a study from the HPBA (Hearth, Patio, and Barbecue Association), the pellet smokers has soon become the hottest trend on the market. More especially, they are popular for those who have no abilities or experiences to bring the amazing smoking dishes.
At first, the pellet smokers look like the traditional ones, but they’re super high-tech machines. With an in-built digital controller, it’s quite easy and simple to check the temperature inside. Additionally, automatically feeding high-energy wood pellets into the firebox helps to keep the heat of the smoker stable.
Moreover, these units are equipped with computer-controlled thermostats that can be set to smoke at a particular temperature for a certain time. What’s more, a heating component for starting the fire and a fan for speeding the combustion are directed by the small computer as well. Interestingly, some recent units can be Bluetooth or Wi-Fi enabled for remote control.
And if you are going to select the pellet smoker, you are free to pick any size that is fit for your backyard.
Check the video below to know how to cook on the pellet smoker
The propane/gas smoker helps you deal with the worry about looking for a power source to cook. As its name suggests, this machine is designed to mainly use gas to fuel the flame. So, you just take a propane tank with this unit, and everything is done.
These smokers look like cabinets or lockers with a burner at the bottom, a shell for wood and water pan, and 3 or 4 pans for food. The burner is often made of cast or brass aluminum with countless jets, giving a great durability. In addition, the gas smoker is attached to a chimney or damper and some vent holes at the bottom.
The propane smoker often comes with two doors. One is for checking the flame and adding wood and water. The other is for cooking. Most are made from thin metal and the doors are not tight to release the heat and smoke. Since you’re free to use any wood or charcoal, that means you avail less fuel for burning, offering a great value for money.
Another best smoker that I’m going to talk about is the electric smoker. In examining the appearance, this machine looks like the propane smoker. But, the operation is definitively different.
The high-quality electric smoker comes with a thermostat that is attached to a temperature probe inside. The major task of the prone is to turn on and off the electricity in order to keep the smoker at the consistent temperature. So, you don’t need to check the fuel supply or even worry about annoying ash. It’s because the electricity does much of the work for you.
Additionally, these units have small vent holes for keeping the temperature. And it’s perfect for maintaining the moisture for some food. What’s more, you just spend about half of kilowatt every hour if the electric smoker is running 750 watts constantly.
Love enjoying the smoked and water-mouthing taste of the meat? But, feel tough to control the fire because it’s a time-taking and messy process. Well, the appearance of the modern charcoal smoker will help you deal with this issue. The main fuel is charcoal or pellets (suitable for outdoors). So, just put the fuel into the charcoal section and make a fire.
These machines come with two setups as horizontal and verticals modes. If you need a better air circulation to cook quicker, you should choose the vertical smokers. Meanwhile, the horizontal ones are just ideal for placing the food in. Also, make sure that the charcoal section is large and has an easy access for quick lighting up. What’s more, you should add water in a water bowl to keep the food juicier while smoking.
Wonderfully, setting the best temperature for cooking is not hard since some modern charcoal smokers are integrated with a built-in thermometer and some flexible vents. In addition, you can soon become a pro thanks to an instruction manual with helpful recipes and tips.
This video helps you to know how to use the charcoal smoker
If you have a serious thought of barbequing, you should opt for an offset smoker. The first reason is that it’s quite cool for those who want to impress their family, friends, and even themselves. Of course, the result is free from blame thanks to its traditional design with two separate chambers.
The heat and smoke from the firebox chamber will be transferred to the cooking chamber. This brings the maximum heat and consistent temperature through all the meat. In addition, its construction is made from high-quality steel that helps to absorb heat and deliver evenly.
What’s more, the offset smoker features large selves for cooking a big amount of meat in one go. Since this unit is not expensive and can last a lifetime, it will be your great investment in the long run.
Check this video to get a clearer look
Check the Best Product For Each Type of Smoker
Other Types of Smokers You Shouldn’t Miss
Except for five main types of smokers, I also want to introduce others that are considered as the best smoker.
The Kamado smoker is a modern version of earthenware cooking ovens that came into use thousands of years ago in China and India. They are mainly made from an array of high-quality materials such as ceramics, terracotta, lava, cement, and other refractory materials.
The charcoal is placed at the bottom, that means you can build a fire even in windy conditions. Besides, the thick sides help to keep and deliver the heat effectively. Since the Kamado’s materials come with low airflow, your meat always remains juicer, not dried out.
One more thing to note is that these smokers are quite heavy and can easily break if knocked over or dropped. And always prepare fire-resistant hand gloves to open the lid while cooking.
The water smoker has another name of the bullet because of its cylindrical shape and dome cover. If you want a slow and low cooking (2250F-2500F for 4 hours, for instance), this unit will be your perfect choice. Usually, there are three sections with the charcoal burns in the bottom, the water pan in the middle, and cooking areas above. Or you can see more sections for cooking in this unit.
Similar to other types of the smokers, the main objective of the water pan is to keep the heat, maintain the temperature and create an ideal moist smoking environment. Additionally, the thicker and heavier metals help to hold and keep the heat better, offering the consistent heating to cook the meat. Since the water smoker can use either charcoal, gas, or electricity, it’s convenient.
The next type I want to talk about is drum smokers. These are extremely easy-to-use, lightweight, portable, and inexpensive. The firebox is at the bottom while the cooking rack is on the top. Since there is no water pan, you need to wrap the meat in aluminum foil while smoking to avoid drying out.
Additionally, these smokers are equipped with vent holes for controlling the temperature. Make sure you hold it at a low temp to maintain the oxygen flow low enough. Relying on that, no drippings happen.
A box smoker is literally a box with the firebox chamber at the bottom and the cooking chamber on the top. Similar to the water smokers, the heat from the firebox is directly below, allowing the heat to be conserved. Of course, it comes with the water pan to keep the meat moist all the times. There are also vent holes alongside the smoker, helping to adjust and maintain the consistent temperature.
How Does A Smoker Work?
Now, you knew thoroughly all different types of smoker. Each comes with different features that offers lots of great functions to help you smoke the food perfectly. But, do you have any idea of its general process? How does a smoker truly work? Let me explain more!
No matter which smoker you opt for, there are always two main systems consisting of the firebox chamber and the cooking chamber. When making the fire, the heat from the firebox will flow through the cooking chamber. It’s a slow process, but it helps to add flavor to the food you want to cook.
Then, take a look at air vents! These things are extremely useful to adjust both temperature and smoke production. The top vent is to renew the smoke itself and keep the heat levels. Meanwhile, the bottom vent is to increase/decrease the burning rate.
While smoking, make sure you open the top vent to enhance steam and smoke release. Remember to turn the bottom vent so that it’s opposite the wind direction. Relying on that, you can get the higher temperature and cook quickly.
Tips to Buying Your First Smoker
Prior to your first purchase of the best smoker, I want to show you a couple of useful tips and tricks. Hope this information helps you make a right decision.
Tips to Smoking the Meat Effectively
Of course, the best smokers will help you smoke the meat perfectly. But, don’t miss some important tips so you can produce the best result ever.
A great outdoor party is always fun because you can spend time on enjoying with your family and friends as well as tasting the mouth-watering food. Of course, the best smoker is the key to help you bring out the excellent dishes.
After reading my guide from the start to finish, I think you can make up your mind with ease. You have no worry about which type of smoker you want at present or search for the good product because all are listed in details. Just consider carefully and combine with some useful tips in such a way that you receive the good unit for the first purchase.
Or if you still have any wonder, don’t mind leaving your comments in the box below. I’m always here to help you answer all. Thanks for reading!