Category Archives: Smoker

Best Electric Smoker for the Money

Gone were the days when using a smoker is a dreaded task. With an electric smoker, it is now quicker and easier. There are coils that will produce heat to carry out the smoking process while still guaranteeing natural and smoky flavor. This is unlike traditional smokers that use flames. Most of the functions are also automated, allowing it to deliver a set-and-forget functionality.

Looking for the best electric smoker for the money? If you have no idea which one to buy, keep on reading the rest of this post and learn from some of our recommendations.

Old Smokey Electric Smoker

The shape and overall design of this model will remind you of a traditional drum smoker. The main material that is used is aluminized steel, which is lightweight. If there is one problem with this material, however, it would be that it can easily get hot, so observe caution in its use!

In terms of design, one thing that you will love in this electric smoker is the flat roof. The latter is beneficial in allowing the juices to condense directly and above the meat, which will make it more flavorful.

There is a dial that will allow you to choose the temperature based on what is needed by your recipe. Some people might not like how there is no numeric display, which means that you cannot be more precise in setting the level of heat. A meat thermometer is recommended to easily monitor the process.

Lastly, it is also worth mentioning that it comes with a heating element that delivers 1,250 watts. This is far from being the most powerful, but at its price point, this will be more than enough. With its heating mechanism, it can reach a maximum temperature of 300 degrees. Although, when smoking meat, it is advisable that you keep the temperature at 225 to 250 degrees.

Pros:

  • Space-efficient body
  • Requires minimal supervision
  • Lightweight and portable

Cons:

  • Exterior can get extremely hot
  • Can be difficult to load  

Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker

The brand name itself can already provide you a good reason to have it considered over many of its competitors. Technically speaking, it can also prove to be impressive. It has a heating capacity of 1,500 watts with the ability to reach a maximum temperature of 400 degrees.

When it comes to its design, the interior has three chrome racks. The racks are removable, making it easy to have a bigger space if you will smoke larger items. In total, you will get 548 square inches of a cooking surface while the body remains lightweight and portable. With handles on both sides, it will be easy to move it around even if it is not equipped with wheels.

In the front door, you can see a thermometer with analog design. It is easy to read despite not having a digital display. This will help to keep track of the internal temperature in the absence of having to open the door every now and then.

Lastly, this is a favorite of many beginners because of its intuitive design. Even if it is your first time to use an electric smoker, you will not encounter serious problems. You can operate the smoker without complications!

Pros:

  • Designed with an ergonomic handle
  • Durable construction
  • High wattage and temperature capacity

Cons:

  • No electronic temperature control
  • Smoke can be prone to leaking  

Char-Broil Analog Electric Smoker

This vertical smoker has a 544 square inches of cooking area, which is generous enough for most people. The cooking grates are chrome-plated. The exterior, on the other hand, has double-wall insulation. The latter is the one that is responsible for its ability to maintain consistent temperature throughout its use.

The smoker comes with front-access wood chip, grease cup, and water tray, making it easy to use. For monitoring the temperature, on the other hand, an analog gauge is located in front at the top center part of the door. You can see the temperature inside without the need to open the door, which means that heat and smoke will be trapped. There are also dual door latches to prevent smoke leaks.

With the 1,200-watt cooking element, you can expect it to be powerful enough for most small to mid-scale tasks. On the other hand, for commercial and large-scale use, the wattage can be underwhelming for some users, as well as the overall capacity of this electric smoker.

The analog temperature control, however, can be a problem for a lot of people. This is quite tricky to adjust compared to digital control. With long-term use, meanwhile, you will get used to it.

Pros:

  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Compact design
  • User-friendly

Cons:

  • Short power cord
  • Fine tuning temperature can be tricky  

Best Pellet Smoker for the Money

Want to enjoy smoky meat that is oozing with flavor? Then, you will need the best pellet smoker for the money, including the brands and models listed on this post.

It should be noted that not all pellet smokers are created equal. Aside from price, they are also different in terms of durability, ease of use, versatility, size, and features, among other things. As a responsible buyer, you need to go beyond cost when deciding which one is best to purchase.

Our Top Picks for the Best Pellet Smoker

Unsure which one to choose? Below are three of the models that should be on your list.

Camp Chef SmokePro DLX 24 Wood Pellet Grill Smoker

At its price, this product is impressive because of its generous smoking surface. The upper rack of the pellet smoker has a surface area of 141 square inches while the lower rack is 429 square inches. In total, the surface area is 429 square inches, providing you with plenty of space.

The hopper capacity is also impressive since it can hold up to 18 pounds of pellet. This eliminates the need to have it frequently refilled throughout the process of smoking.

It has the innovative Smart Smoke Technology, which will help in maximizing the results. You do not need to be left guessing as most of the work will be done by the machine on its own without the need for manual configuration.

For the temperature range, you can set it from 160 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, which will allow you to use it not only for smoking but also for other tasks, such as for grilling.

Lastly, for your peace of mind, it is good to know that the manufacturer is offering a warranty for three years.

Pros:

  • Easy to use and assemble
  • Durable construction
  • Generous size

Cons:

  • Temperature sensor can have issues
  • Ash can easily accumulate

Z-Grills ZPG-7002ENC Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker

This product delivers flexible convection cooking, which is one of the reasons why it can provide the best bang for the buck. Aside from being a smoker, you can also use it for grilling, baking, roasting, and braising, among other things.

As an improved version of the previous model from the manufacturer, one of the new features that you can find in this product is the temperature and pellet feed control system.  It auto-ignites the grill and makes it easy to set the desired temperature anywhere from 180 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

It also comes with a huge cooking area, which will allow you to smoke more within a short span of time. The total rack surface is 700 square inches. Even the pellets will not need to be frequently replaced as the hopper can hold up to 20 pounds.

The LED temperature read-out is also a plus, making it easy to monitor the functionality of this pellet smoker.

In terms of ease of use, you will also love this product. It is free of complications.  It has an electronic auto ignition, which is possible with digital control. It also comes with automatic temperature control depending on the external conditions.

Lastly, it also comes with a three-year warranty from the manufacturer.

Pros:

  • User-friendly
  • Comes with free pellets
  • Durable construction

Cons:

  • No ash cleaning feature
  • Can have temperature spikes

Pit Boss Grill 71820FB PB820FB Pellet Grill and Smoker

A lot of its users are comparing this model to the Trager pellet grill and smoker, except that this model is cheaper. Nonetheless, this does not mean that the functionality and performance are compromised.

In total, there is an 820-square-inch cooking area, which makes it generous in terms of its capacity. Despite this, moving it around does not need to be difficult. This can be attributed to the fact that there are two wheels on the side.

Ease of use is one more thing that you will love in this product. There is no need to be an expert in making the most out of this pellet smoker. It has a dial-in temperature control, which will make it a snap to set the temperature from 180 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also a LED readout that will be easy for you to see any time of the day.

The flame broiler is also a good feature of this model, especially when it comes to its versatility. It has a slide plate that will be useful when grilling burgers and steaks, allowing you to use it beyond a smoker.

Lastly, the innovative convection system is one more thing that makes this an exceptional product. With fan-forced air, it is more efficient compared to traditional systems.

Pros:

  • Gives great smoky flavor
  • Set-up is easy
  • Large cooking area

Cons:

  • Conveyor can be prone to jamming
  • Some parts are flimsy