Smoking is an ancient and time-tested method to preserve meat that is still prevalent in both large and small scale for a number of reasons. Frozen meats stay fresh longer without losing its taste and without decaying. It is much better compared to ice-based and chemical techniques. Smoking is completely natural and does not bring in harmful chemicals or toxins that some other methods accomplish. With modern knowhow, people will not have to utilize kilns any longer or assemble smoking houses to conserve meats. A number of contemporary meat smokers being available on the web and we present the best 10 models for your review.
Table of Contents
Smokin-It Model #1
First on the list is the popular Smokin-It type of smoker. Smokin-It is a superior electrical smoker which preserves meat up to maximum capacity of 22 pounds. It is constructed completely using robust 201, 18 gallon S.S. coupled with a commanding heating element of 400 watts and a single phase power of 120 volts approved by NSF which works superbly in restaurants and homes. It is quite affordable yet, this distinct meat smoker is extremely durable. It features adaptable shelves that can be modified to place bigger meat chunks. Rubber casters which move smoothly are provided to improve portability. This model also features a long lasting drip pan, LED indicators, plus a 12 foot long electric cord.
Masterbuilt M7P is one of the best smokers in this forte. It comes in a black theme that is easy to maintain and is a superior meat smoker along with grill with seven features in one machine. It is compatible with both propane and charcoal. It features a pioneering and long lasting aluminum pot of 10.5 quarts capacity plus a basket which makes it highly functional. It is very compact admeasuring 18” x 18” x 26.5” making it perfect for camping purposes. This smoker also incorporates temperature gauge, a robust burner made from cast iron, insulated handles. Masterbuilt M7P comes reasonably priced and it comes with a limited warranty of 12 months.
The Masterbuilt 20070112 is a digital smoker with a superb functional design. It incorporates an uninterrupted feed system for wood chips. It smokes and cures a variety of meat efficiently and gives output of smoking for 6 hours. It saves a good amount of heat using smoke effectively and thereby saves a good amount of money which would have been used on electric power. Masterbuilt 20070112 cold smoker comes reasonably priced, it extremely durable and quite simple to use.
Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker
Bradley Smoker presents the Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker that comprises of four racks and has a very compact architecture. This electric meat smoker is perfect for outdoor and indoor use. It is completely automated and uses digital technology. A thermostat regulates the heating element. A superb design produces eight hours of smoke at 320 degree Fahrenheit. It incorporates a spacious interior plus a versatile functioning architecture to smoke chicken, fish and pork. It is quite reasonably priced.
A great smoker powered by charcoal is next in the list, the Dyna-Glo DGO1176BDC-D. It features a superb architecture that gets great flavor from meat. It is constructed using thick porcelain enameled wood plus charcoal tray which is very durable. The heating element is regulated with the help of a thermostat that works efficiently and quickly. It features six modifiable cooking grates. This model incorporates spacious interior of 784 sq. inches. It is made from a durable and robust steel body. It is provided with a dual door to reduce heat losses while putting wood chips.
Weber 721001 comes up as a charcoal smoker of 18 inches and perfect for domestic use. It is also known as the Smokey Mountain. It has double cooking grates of 18.5 inches which are nickel plated. Also, its body is extremely durable made from porcelain-enameled steel. The interior body is very spacious. It features a thermometer to control temperature, insulated handle; big sized water pan to combine steam and smoke to ensure that meat becomes tender. It comes with a limited warranty of 10 years.
Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D
Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D is a big-sized and operational meat smoker ideal for use daily. In fact, it is amongst the finest meat smokers in our 2017 review. It comes in big 30 inch architecture and has spacious cooking space of 717 sq. inches. This efficient smoker is powered by propane. It features a dual door design plus four smoking racks that are chrome plated and helps organizing meats during smoking. It works consistently well with the help of a push ignition procedure. It has various other great features like an inbuilt temperature gauge, insulated wire handle and a porcelain coated tray for wood chips.
Masterbuilt 20070910 is a superior electrical smoker using digital technology and controlled from top as with majority of Masterbuilt smokers. It comes in a dark theme and large with 30 inch size and offers a spacious 730 sq. inches smoking room. It features a heating element of 800 watts. This smoker features four racks that are chrome-plated. User has to simply press the button on the panel and the responsive timer ensures the rest. This programmable thermostat helps regulate temperature between 100 to 275 degree Fahrenheit). This smoker also features an upper air damper and a chip chute on the side.
The Masterbuilt 20070411 is the best meat smoker in our 2017 list. This smoker admeasures 30 inches and provides a spacious 730 sq. foot internal cooking space. This upper mounted controller is simple and convenient to use. It also features a heating element with 800 watts power, along with a programmable thermostat. This smoker can also be operated with the help of a remote control. It features four racks that are chrome plated and a wood chute towards the side. The superbly connected electrical system delivers output consistently, efficiently and quickly.
Meat Smokers Buying Guide
Meat smokers are very handy additions to your home assortment especially if you like tasty food and meat in general. Getting the right smoker is not an easy task, however, as this market varies just as much as any other, there is no such thing as a universal solution as each of them is different and caters to a different group of needs. A beginner will be naturally clueless and he/she will need some sort of a guide for proper assistance. That is where we jump in!
Types of Meat Smokers
As I said in the introduction paragraph, meat smokers vary in a lot of different parameters and they are very different from one another. The thing that varies the most is the source of their heat. The traditional solutions like charcoal and wood are still fairly common but the modern innovations that come in form of electric renditions and propane are rising in popularity.
In the following lines, we will look a bit more into the meat smoker types and see what we can expect from each of them.
- Wood Meat Smokers: These are the most basic and the very first meat smokers on the market (if we look historically). They are traditionally effective but they are not very suitable for beginners and/or people who don’t have some sort of experience when it comes to this. But, other than that, you can’t go wrong with these meat smokers. Not only that they are a good solution for meat smoking, they can also be used for many other foods as well.
- Electric Meat Smokers: They are identical to wood smokers when it comes to many things but they don’t work in the same way. The main difference comes from the source of power – instead of fire, this time the starting point is an electric outlet. On top of that, many electric smokers also have a self-timer that allows you to schedule the food processing for a certain time and a certain time period as well. Extremely practical!
- Charcoal Meat Smokers: The source of power of Charcoal Meat Smokers is (as the name implies) charcoal. Other than that, it functions exactly the same as the two previously mentioned types and the meat tastes just as delicious as well!
- Propane Meat Smokers: These smokers use the natural burning gas (propane) as the source of their power. They have a tank system that can regulate their own temperature and they are much easily maintained than their wood, charcoal, and electric counterparts. The downside is that the taste is not as good and you may not find your meat to be as delicious as you want it to be.
Selecting the Right Meat Smoker
This is the most important step and a vital one. There are many factors to be considered and that is what makes this so much harder but we will look them up one by one right now.
- Effective Cooking Surface: You should always consider the actual surface of your meat smoker. It goes hand-in-hand with the dimensions of the smoker – the bigger the size, the bigger the cooking surface should be as well. If there is enough space, you can also add some additional racks for extra flexibility.
- Size and Portability: Another very important factor is the size itself. In order to help yourself out, consider how often you move places and/or how often you travel as well. Big meat smokers have less portability (or no portability at all) so if you are a frequent traveler, you should definitely choose a small smoker. Foldable additions and legs that can be detached are a must for anyone who isn’t glued to one single location.
- Brand: Another important thing to look out for is the manufacturer as well. A good brand is also an association for quality. It is important to be properly informed and to read about what each manufacturer offers before making the final purchase. Getting some user reviews is always handful as well.
- Versatility: A meat smoker can offer more functionality than the regular smokers. Combo sets are fairly popular especially the grill/smoker combos that offer a cooking surface and a smoking section mixed in one single and unique set. If you want some additional features and more flexibility, this is certainly something to look out for.
Meat Smoker Care and Maintenance
Longevity is very important when it comes to meat smokers as well. One thing that helps out quite a lot here is a proper maintenance. It’s not rocket science and there aren’t really a whole lot of features to consider but there are several important things to look into.
- Outdoor Concerns: Any extended exposure of your smoker to the outdoor environment, in general, is bad. The damage can be quite a big one and it can happen sometime after the exposure as well. If you really need to leave your smoker in the open, use some sort of protective cover to minimize these risks.
- Regular Cleaning: This process is never a pleasant one but it’s absolutely needed if you want your meat smoker to last long and if you want the quality of your meat to remain intact. You should do it regularly and as in-depth as possible.
- Use replacements: No matter how much you care for your smoker, sometimes you can’t prevent the damage from happening. If that is the case, consider replacing the malfunctioning parts instead of buying the new ones. Components such as the lids, smoker pans and handles can all be replaced smoothly and effectively.
If you like barbecue and if you wish to prepare it on a regular basis – meat smokers are made just for you! It is not easy to buy the right smoker nor is it easy to actually determine what you want your smoker to do. That is where various different online guides jump to the rescue and I honestly hope that this one gave you everything that you needed to know. Best of luck in your purchase and thanks for reading!