So you’re doing your research on electric smokers? Well in this handy little read, you’ll find some hints and tips on how to use your electric smoker, plus at the end, i’ll show off some of the top electric smokers you can buy.
5 Tips For Electric Smokers
Don’t Oversmoke Your Food
If you’ve never smoked before, you’ll always enter a steep learning curve, meats like chicken can be oversmoked and result in food that is pretty much inedible so go easy on the chips to start with, work your way up.
Learn To Find The Vent Sweet Spot
As mentioned above over smoking food can make it taste awful. Using chicken again, you’ll want to keep the vent open as much as possible. Chicken can quickly absorb the smoke and a build up of too much can result in some nasty tasting food.
Generally you’ll want to keep the vent open, this will allow the smoke to penetrate the meat and control the airflow. If you need to raise the internal temperature then after you’ve finished cooking close the vents for a bit.
Don’t Soak Your Wood Chips
If you’ve seen somewhere that soaking your chips will help give off more of an aroma, don’t! When soaked chips are lit up you’ll find white “smoke”. What you’re actually seeing is steam, and you don’t want that in a smoker. Especially an electric one!
The aim when smoking is to create a fine blue coloured smoke, this is the type you’re looking for. It’s the one that carries the scents inside the meats.
Use Foil To Make Clean Ups Way Easier
Okay, so this is more of a housekeeping tip. You can line your racks with foil to make a barrier between your food and the racks. When you’re done, toss the foil away and voila! You’re pretty much done. If you’re not a fan of cleaning up right away and think that the little bit of burnt fat on the racks will add flavor, it won’t. It will just be a rancid mess that will taste amazingly bad.
On the other hand you can wrap your meats up in tinfoil before placing them into your electric smokers and make it cook in it’s own juices.
Smoke Chicken On A Hotter Setting
With the previous chicken analogies, you may wonder if it’s one of my most loved meats to smoke and you’d be right. It’s utterly delicious. Chicken isnt a meat to cook low and slow. When dealing with poultry, you have to make sure it’s cooked throughout or you can risk a few days off work with some pretty terrible nightmares and sweats.
If you want to use chicken cook it at 275 degrees for 1.5 hours if you really want to smoke it to perfection.
Lets Get On With The Show
By now you’ll have read these tips and be all like “I’m getting me an elctric smoker!” And you’d have good reason to want one too, they’re portable, handy and they do the job just right too, even if you don’t have the fuel available to smoke it out.
Without any further delay, i present to you, 5 electric smokers.
Nice little promo video for Masterbuilt there. These guys have been making quality smokers for years, they have countless product lines available and they sell tonnes of these things every year. They get quality reviews on every sales platform and are a force to be reckoned with.
- Digital controls so you can set and forget
- Four tiers of racks for maximum storage
- Air dampener for smoke control
- Side loading wood chip panel so you don’t need to open the door
This one has plenty of space in it, enough for 6 chickens (My favourite) , 2 Turkeys, 4 racks of ribs or 4 pork butts. There’s plenty of room to mix and match it of course. Why anyone would just use it to cook 6 chickens is beyond me but it’s all about comparing storage size.
|Product Dimensions||30 x 20 x 20 Inches|
|Item Weight||45.9 Pounds|
|Shipping Weight||50.7 Pounds|
This model comes in two different sizes, a 30″ and a 40″ model. It also has Bluetooth capabilities and looks pretty cool too.
Head over to Amazon and check out the prices.
Char-Broil Deluxe Digital
Char-Broil have had a good run. These guys also have a great following over social media and the reviews are pretty good too. Check out some of the finer points this beast can offer.
- Insulate double walled construction to keep more heat in longer
- Removable food thermometer
- Glass viewing door
- Advanced control panel with easy to read LED display
|Product Dimensions||16.5" x 18.1" x 32.5"|
|Item Weight||50.2 Pounds|
This model comes with a handy little remote control and an internal light to see through the smoke. You can simply fill up the chip tray located at the bottom and leave it to run.
If this is something that looks interesting to you then follow the button to head on over to Amazon to check out the price!
Smoke Hollow D4015B
This one would come under the budget category. But that’s not to say it’s one of the poorer built electric smokers though. This still has some decent reviews and it comes with a bunch of features that not many other have considered adding in. Smoke Hollow are craftsmen in their own right. Lets take a look at some of the features within.
- 4.5 cubic feet of space
- Smart device remote capability
- Dual elements for faster cooking
- East fill water port on the side for swift access
|Product Dimensions||22.4" x 21.5" x 40.2"|
|Item Weight||88 Pounds|
|Shipping Weight||95 Pounds|
As you can see from the image above, you’ve already made your mind up about what meats you can fit in and more importantly, how much of it. The Smoke Tronix has a cold smoke setting enabling you to give some of your other cooked food a nice overall flavor
Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker
Here at number 4 on the list is the Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker. This is one fine looking smoker if you ask me, it has the old rustic look like it was made back in the Frontier days, giving you the genuine BBQ experience!
With over 700 reviews on Amazon and toting an average rating of 4.5 stars, you’d be hard pressed to get a better model for your money.
- Convenient and easy to use, great for beginner and seasoned smokers
- Light weight frame and two side handles for convenient portability
- 1500 Watt heating element to give you a range of 100-400 degrees coking temperature.
- Built in thermometer on the front door for easy monitoring.
|Product Dimensions||22" x 19" x 37.5"|
|Item Weight||51.5 Pounds|
|Shipping Weight||59 Pounds|
Not as technically advanced as the rest on the list but if you’re looking for a true BBQ experience then why would you need any of the extra gadgets others include? This is by far one of my favourites I’ve seen.
Landmann Smoky Mountain
It doesn’t matter if you’re new to electric smokers or a seasoned expert (Did you see what i did there?) This electric smoker will enable you to create some of the most delicious smoked meats, and making it so so simple in the process.
If you want a smoker but have limited space to put one, Landmann’s Electric Smoker is and compact space saving. Efficiency is the order of the day here, with limited space come unlimited responsibility. This smoker features a three in one combo tray for wood and chip pan, grease pan and water pan.
- Rear dampener port for convenient access
- Separate heating element and removable thermometer
- Adjustable feet for those uneven surfaces to avoid nasty spillages
- Super sturdy, wrought iron handles for easy locating
|Product Dimension||26.7" x 16.6" x 13.2"|
|Item Weight||33 Pounds|
|Shipping Weight||40.1 Pounds|
A convenient space saver if things are a bit tight for you or you don’t expect so many people to be coming along. Still, it has a good amount of space and enough shelves to mean that you can still make a great dinner out of it. Dimensions can be misleading, give it a try today and see how great you can be.
Why Should You Buy An Electric Smoker
So you’ve checked out the top tips and seen some pretty sweet smokers. But there’s still something at the back of your mind, why should you buy an electric smoker? I’ll give you 3 reasons why it’s a good idea!
They’re Perfect For Beginners
If you don’t have a smoker at all and you’ve never attempted it before, their ease of use is something you should definitely keep in mind. If something seems that complicated that it requires an engineering degree, you’ll probably just give it a miss and not even attempt making some delicious grub!
If you can use a normal electric oven, you’ll be able to use an electric smoker. Electric smokers are the set and forget type of smokers that require little maintenance when the food is on the go and the results are pretty spectacular for the effort you put in to it.
When you’ve had a good few runs and nailed the process and the results are just what you expected, you might want to try a more authentic type of smoker and go full smoker! You may be just satisfied with your purchase and decide that it’s just right for you and your guests, after all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!
Electric smokers are a great introduction to smoking, you’ll be able to hone your cooking skills and make everyone proud of you.
Electric Smokers Are Cheaper Than Other Types Of Smoker
Generally speaking, electric smokers are cheaper than your upgraded brothers like the pellet smokers, I don’t mean in terms of price tag, you’ll get some substantial long term value out of these machines.
I’m not a financial adviser or anything, but if i told you that if you could save twice the money on your monthly food shop, imagine the other things you could get to go with your new smoker? You’d be able to kit yourself out with all kinds of neat things like accessories, sauces and even get some home made rubs from the money you saved enough to last the lifetime of your smoker.
Super Easy To Run
Instead of regular BBQ cooking where you need to start the fire to light the coals, mix them about to get an even heat going, then maintain the heat, control airflow, and all the rest of the little nuances. You’re left with an abundance of extra time to play games with the family, make some extra sauces or salads. Possibly just drink more!
To effectively run an electric smoker, you just need to fill the water tray, bung in your chips, plug it in and set it to run. Obviously you’ll need to add the meat when it gets to the right temperature but you get where i was going with that one. Give it some time to heat up and you’re off to a winner!
There Is A Downside Though…
It wouldn’t be fair of me to keep tooting the trumpet for electric smokers. They are good machines and they do cook some great food, but there is one thing that they lack the ability to do. It depends on how much you want t that sets apart your desire to go ahead and buy one.
Lack Of Smoke Ring
A smoke ring is the distinctive pink discolouration just beneath the surface of the meat you’re cooking. Many pit-masters pride themselves in their ability to cook food that has a smoke ring.
Without going into too much detail, there are a couple of things you will want to know about smoke rings which might impact your decision to buy one in the future.
- During the combustion process of the wood, chemicals react with the chemicals in the meat which is when smoke rings appear. Electric Smokers lack the required heat levels to make the wood smoulder enough to produce these chemicals and therefore a smoke ring.
- As impressive as a smoke rings looks, it doesn’t actually impact the taste of the meat or add any additional flavour. If looks aren’t important to you then by all mean go and get an electric smoker.