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What to Look For When Buying a Smoker

Are you looking to cook the most savory meats in the entire neighborhood? Do you want your guests to come from far and wide to enjoy your delicious meals? If so, then you need to invest in the right cooking tools, such as a smoker.

Doing so will help give your meat a new flavor, ease the amount of active cooking, and provide you with enough meat to feed all of your guests hefty portions!

See below for an in-depth guide on what to look for when purchasing cooking gadgets and how to ensure you’ve found the right smoker for your situation.

1. Consider the Different Types

So you say you want to purchase a smoker. That’s great, but what kind of smoker are you looking for? Some out there might not realize that there are 4 different types of smoker grills to choose from: charcoal smokers, pellet smokers, electric smokers, and gas smokers.

What’s the main difference between them all? They all have the ability to create smoky and delicious dishes, they just all have a different way of getting there.

For example, an electric smoker will require almost zero attention while it cooks. All you need to do is plug in the smoker grill and set the temperature, then place your meat inside. Within a few hours, your meat will be ready.

If you’re interested in an electric smoker, then be sure to visit this page to find the best electric smokers on the market.

With pellet smokers, you’ll still enjoy an easy setup. They’re the most efficient of all four types of smokers and allow you to cook your meats with a CO2-neutral result.

With a gas smoker, you’ll be able to achieve very high temperatures with relative ease. Once it’s reached a certain temp, you don’t need to mess with it any longer to keep it there, giving it a consistent cook-through.

Lastly, you have charcoal smokers, which are easy to use and among the easiest to clean (thanks to the ashtray inside it). The flavor of the meat cooked in a charcoal grill is similar to your favorite BBQ eateries. It’s smoky, chewy, and mouth-watering.

2. A Justified Price

Whenever you hit the market to look for cooking tools, there is always one consistent question that you’ll ask yourself: how much is it?

It’s a fair question! You want to make sure that the price justifies the need you have. Whether you’re buying it for yourself or purchasing it as a gift for your loved one, you need to make sure it fits within the parameters of your budget.

But here’s our challenge for you: focus on finding the highest return on your investment, not just looking for the lowest price. If you search for the cheapest smoker that money can buy, then that’s exactly what you’ll get: a cheap smoker that creates undesired results.

As far as what to budget for, you can easily find a high-quality mid-range smoker for around $200 to $500. For those of you that are more advanced or need a larger smoker, you might be looking at price ranges in the thousands.

3. Temperature Capabilities

As we mentioned earlier, gas smokers will give you the easiest method for reaching high temperatures (and keeping them there) when you’re cooking.

Generally speaking, you’ll only need to reach somewhere around 220 degrees Fahrenheit to smoke most meats. That said, there are situations where you might wish to hit as high as 500 degrees to sear a steak.

By no means are you required to find a cooking bbq smoker that reaches 500-degrees, it’s more about what kind of meat you’re looking to create.

Do some research on the type of meats you’re wanting to smoke. What temperature ranges do the experts recommend? Let that be your guide as you shop. Keep in mind that the wider range of temperatures you’re looking for, the more you’ll likely have to spend to find a capable smoker.

4. Work Surfaces

Work surfaces are the unsung heroes of cooking gadgets. No one wants to feel like they’re in an episode of Hell’s Kitchen running from the smoker to set the meat to the indoor kitchen to grab sauces, cut the meat, and so forth.

With a work surface, you can bring everything you need and have a place to set it; it makes the entire cooking process easier.

When you go to look at smokers to purchase, make sure you find a big enough work surface. Try to envision the types of things you usually bring out to a grill and let that be your basis as you shop around.

5. Safety Features

As you might imagine, cooking BBQ on a smoker can be somewhat dangerous. You’re dealing with a cooking tool that’s maintaining a consistently-high temperature, so safety is always a top concern.

Does the smoker you’re looking at have heat-resistant handles? What precautions did the manufacturer take to ensure it’s pet and child-friendly?

You can find all of this information out before you shop. Look at the information on the manufacturer’s website to see what their biggest safety features are and why it’s necessary for your family.

Invest in the Right Cooking Tools for Your BBQ Experience

Now that you have seen an in-depth guide on what to look for when buying a smoker as one of your cooking tools, be sure to use this information to your advantage.

Take the time to browse our website for more articles on cooking meat, as well as many other helpful topics that you will enjoy.

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