Food smokers all, by design, smoke your food. However, there is significant variation between models from the fuel they use to the safety features they come with. Here are a few tips on how to find the best food smoker for your needs. We’ll also give you advice on what to look for in general when shopping for a food smoker.
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Determine the Biggest Item You Typically Smoke
Determine the biggest item you regularly smoke. If you smoke large racks of ribs or a whole turkey, you’ll need a much larger food smoker than someone who smokes a few sausages or steaks. Buy a smoker that has space to cook what you want. However, you shouldn’t buy a massive unit in the hope that you’ll eventually use the space since the cost of the smoker is partly determined by its size.
Look for Key Features
A key feature to look for in smokers is temperature control. Just because it is smoking it doesn’t mean it is cooking at the ideal temperature. You need it to maintain the food at the proper temperature so that it is safe to eat when done. A thermostat is inferior to temperature control since temperature controls will heat up the food if things are cooling down while the thermostat only tells you it is too cool or burning. If you can find it, look for a smoker that will automatically shut off if it is tipped over.
Think about the Type of Fuel
Different types of smokers all have their own characteristics as far as the flavor profile and efficiency goes. Electric smokers give you excellent temperature control and are very safe. They also give you the most control. Gas smokers are easy to set up and create good tasting food, but you should add the hassle of getting replacement gas canisters throughout the summer season. Charcoal smokers tend to make food taste good, but you have to be careful about temperature control. Not all of them let you maintain a safe temperature range.
Check the Safety and Reliability Ratings
Fires due to smokers that tipped over, either accidentally upon contact or on its own, are unfortunately common. Check the safety ratings of smokers before you buy one for your own use. Also, check the reliability ratings of the smoker since you don’t want to buy one that has fifty-fifty odds of quitting before you’ve used it very much. A good way to learn this is by reading electric smoker reviews at Electric Smoker Center.
The complaints and concerns are actually the most important information since it is easy to write about how great it is after its first use. It is the frequent complaints about smokers tipping over, leaking, or failing to evenly cook food that helps you decide which models you don’t want. You’ll also learn what mistakes people made with the smoker, so you know what to avoid yourself. Cookout Pal recently published a complete guide on finding the best electric smoker for the money.
Finding the best smoker for your needs all boils down to what capacity you need, what type of safety features you’re looking for, the type of energy you would prefer to use, and how much work it is to keep the unit going and clean after use.