Best Electric Smoker Reviews
A Good For / Not Good For
When you are a true cooking enthusiast, your goal is to discover new flavors by mastering different cooking techniques. For this experience, you always need just the right equipment.
Thanks to the digital age we have revolutionized the way we prepare food. The ‘set it and forget it’ attitude was unimaginable in the good old days. However, today electric smokers have brought a different mindset to the table, with a more convenient approach to preparing food.
An electric smoker is a perfect product for people who enjoy smoky, savory flavors. Nothing can substitute this cooking technique.
The aroma can best be achieved by smoking the food to perfection, reaching the ideal temperature and keeping it consistent.
There are specific nuances when it comes to smoking food. You might want to retain tenderness, make the meat crisp, or add on new flavors without having to spoil the smoky aroma.
Each one of these cooking goals can be achieved by using different wood, temperature, and special features on your electric smoker.
The best electric smokers are the ones which features suit your needs. Today’s electric smokers have a modern design and advanced technology incorporated into the features. This means there is a product out there for everyone.
Smoking meat and fish is a fairly old technique of preparing food. Earlier, it took a lot longer to achieve the perfect temperature, let alone retain it. Smoking processes even took days to be completed. Luckily for us, we live in an era where cooking appliances are made to be convenient, user-friendly, and highly efficient.
Compared to its modern equivalents, the electric smoker can be much more practical than, for example, a charcoal smoker. It is much faster, safer, and makes less of a mess.
In this sense, an electric smoker is a frontrunner as it doesn’t require you to constantly watch over the food for hours on end.
A potential downside of any electric smoker is its limited food capacity. This is something a few users are unsatisfied with as they cannot do anything to alter it.
This doesn’t pose such a big problem for most people because they use the smoker for reasonably-sized family gatherings and dinner parties.
When you have large pieces of meat or want to entertain many guests, an electric smoker seems quite impractical. As it takes a long time to finish the process and you surely will not be repeating several times in one day.
Typically people will choose a faster alternative for larger gatherings. Electric smokers can be used every day and for special occasions alike. However, they are not a realistic option when you are preparing large meals for big groups of people.
Review of the products
Review of the products
Smoke Hollow SH19079518
Pitmaster Rating: 4.2
The Smoke Hollow Digital Electric Smoker is a high-quality product designed to be user-friendly. It is made with an easy to use digital control system which includes an on/off option, temperature regulation, and timing. These features are key for any cooking ideas as they will make your experience much more convenient and efficient.
The smoker body is fully insulated and will be able to retain the temperature as high or low as you want. The integrated thermostat and 800-watt heating system guarantee an even temperature throughout the smoking process. Keeping a consistent temperature will ensure the perfect smoky flavor in the end.
The dampness in the smoker can be controlled with an adjustable air damper, and the product has a removable water bowl incorporated into the design. This way you will be able to add moisture with ease, achieving the perfect combination of savory and juicy in any meat you prepare.
The product comes with three chrome-coated smoking racks, which means you can use it to divide your meat according to type and prep time.
Maybe the best feature is the easy-clean system which has a removable pan for any excess fluid or grease the meat might let out during the smoking process. You can simply take out the pan and rinse it out when you are done.
The only potential downside is the cooking area which isn’t sufficient for some families. 533 square inches might not be a lot, but on the other hand, the product is fairly low-priced, therefore not expected to be ideal.
- Digital panel controls
- Chrome-coated smoking racks
- Built-in thermostat
- Quality insulation
- 800-watt heating
- Adjustable air damper
- Easy cleaning system
- Easy moisture and flavor control
- Cooking area could be bigger
- DESIGN 65% 65%
- FUNCTIONALITY 83% 83%
- PRICE 80% 80%
Pitmaster Rating: 4.1
The display is done in blue LED making it easy to read off the screen even in bright sunlight. This makes things significantly easier when you are cooking outdoors in the scorching sun.
The Masterbuilt 2007815 is designed to be easy to set up, manage, and use. The digital controls are pretty straightforward, as is the general setup. This is a user-friendly product.
The contemporary design effortlessly keeps the heat at any set temperature. This reduces your direct involvement in the cooking process, meaning you won’t need to check on the food continuously.
The built-in thermostat helps you monitor the temperature in the unit by giving precise readings. What is more, the insulation system is efficient and durable. The product can keep a consistent temperature with ease for many years to come.
The quality design maintains an 800-watt heating system. You can organize the food onto the six racks, set the temperature and just relax. The smoking unit is so reliable you won’t have to lift a finger.
One of its best features is the large cooking area. At 721 square inches, this product can prepare food for big families or large groups of people.
Moreover, it allows you to sort different food into groups, divide them with grates and spacers in the racks and prepare them all at once. This feature saves you time and money and is energy-saving.
The only con will be its bulky build, as it prevents you from easily transporting it outside or away from home. This product is meant to be used in the convenience of your own backyard.
- Digital temperature control
- 4 racks
- 800-watt heating system
- Large cooking space
- Adjustable cooking space
- LED display
- Drip pan
- Quality construction
- Heavy and difficult to transport
- DESIGN 94% 94%
- FUNCTIONALITY 75% 75%
- PRICE 76% 76%
Pitmaster Rating: 4.4
You can use the digital interface to follow up on time and temperature reading. On the flip side, the digital controls on this product allow you to place your food, set the temperature, kick back and just relax. The smoker will be doing the job for you.
The Bradley BTDS108P offers six racks for placing any meat, fish or vegetables you want smoked. This is a smoker which has the most generous cooking space. Compared to its competitors this is by far one of the most spacious electric smokers, providing space to smoke out food for large groups of people.
One of its main features is the wood loader which automatically loads a bisquette, as soon as the previous one has been used up. This way, the smoke will be maintained effortlessly. This feature makes the whole process time-effective, convenient, and efficient.
A unique feature of this electric smoker is that it offers both cold and got smoking. Cold smoking is typically preferred when preparing fish, sometimes ham and bacon while hot smoking is the traditional approach to smoking any meat and vegetables.
This is a pioneering feature which gives you the chance to explore your culinary ideas and new methods of food preparation.
This product is constructed with powder epoxy steel, and the interior is done in polished stainless steel. This ensures that the product has lasting quality even after years of use. Durability is a vital feature in appliances like these as you want the smoker to be reliable and reach any given temperature without problems.
A setback might the item’s price as it will not be in everybody’s price range. Though you might alter your budget for this device to fit in, you can rest assured that you won’t be disappointed.
- Digital controls
- 6 racks
- Generous cooking space
- Wood loader feature
- Hot and cold smoking
- Easy cleanup
- DESIGN 60% 60%
- FUNCTIONALITY 90% 90%
- PRICE 77% 77%
Char Broil Vertical Electric Smoker
Pitmaster Rating: 4.0
The design incorporates three adjustable chrome-plated racks. This makes it easy to manage, divide and organize food into groups before smoking it. Even though it falls into the category of more compact electric smokers the product offers a fairly large cooking area.
The design also has an interesting characteristic which is analog temperature control. Nowadays, people are getting used to everything being digital especially with cooking appliances. However, the Char Broil vertical smoker is becoming a leader in delivering accurate and reliable temperature readings.
Analog controls are less prone to cause setbacks and malfunctions. They are a more cost-effective choice when it comes to design and overall functionality. The use of a built-in thermostat and analog dial you will be able to set the perfect temperature effortlessly.
This product will deliver the authentic smoky flavor which every foodie craves. The design of the smoker includes a wood chip box and a water pan which contribute to making a unique and smoky aroma.
You can place your choice of wood and wait for the smoking chamber to create the perfect setting. The liquid and smoke from the wood will be well mixed and make your food juicy and flavorful.
The smoking unit is well-insulated, designed to retain keep the given temperature consistent and to be durable. This means that your smoking sessions will not be hindered by cold weather. Your food will still be evenly cooked.
Most users praise the product for its easy maintenance. The racks can be removed, and the whole unit can be wiped down in record time. The excess grease and food are gathered in a unit at the bottom of the smoker which can be taken out and cleaned separately.
- Easy to maintain
- 3 chrome-plated racks
- Analog temperature control
- 1,500-watt heating system
- Power cord is short
- DESIGN 75% 75%
- FUNCTIONALITY 95% 95%
- PRICE 65% 65%
Electric Smokers – 2019 Buyer’s Guide
When buying an electric smoker, you need to take into consideration several aspects of the product. Depending on what you are looking for, you’ll think about the price, the features, the construction, heating system, and cleaning system. Some features will inevitably seem more useful than others which is how you’ll make your final decision.
Here are some guidelines on what to take notice of before you buy an electric smoker.
These days, the temperature can be controlled and monitored remotely. This is a helpful feature as it gives you more free time to do other things or just relax. That being said, the temperature control has to be pretty reliable in order for it to be practical.
This means that the controls have to be durable and high-quality in order to serve their purpose properly. You’ll want your smoking unit to be quite accurate if you want it to do all the work for you. You won’t want any malfunctions, glitches, or faulty readings while preparing food.
A good heating system is the pillar of any electric smoker. The heat needs to be reached in due time, and the unit should be able to keep the temperature consistent. This ensures that the food will be properly cooked in a timely manner.
The heating system will depend on the quality of the materials used in the construction of the smoking unit, the quality of the insulation system, and its ability to retain high temperature. A functioning heating system will most likely be found in high-quality brands which can be a bit pricier.
Design and Features
The main task of the design and unit features is to be user-friendly and make the entire job easier. The design of the unit will dictate how well and how fast your food will be prepared. Any quality brand will make its products easy to use regardless of the user’s actual experience in smoking out food.
The features are abundant and can serve many different purposes. Find a combination of features that suit you and your needs and you will be happy with choice of smoker every time you use it.
The cooking area will entirely depend on how many people you usually entertain or how big your family is. This is a design feature which will be based on individual needs.
That being said, make sure you carefully pick the right model and size for you and your family, which will not disappoint you later on.
Modern electric smokers are designed to be easy to maintain and clean out. Most of them can be easily wiped in and out, but only some will include special features to help make the cleaning process more productive.
Pay attention if the smoker has a drip pan, grease pan, water pan, a wood tray, or any other removable units in its design.
These units can be taken out and clean individually, making the cleaning process all the more carefree.
Any removable parts are a great asset for overall durability as they keep the smoker maintained and functioning.
Consider the size of the smoking unit and how it will fit into your home and your lifestyle. If you are low on space, don’t get a bulky and heavy product. Rather, opt for a smaller compact one which can be stored away easily.
If you like to cook outdoors make sure your smoking unit is easy to transport. You need to make sure it can fit into your car and can be assembled quickly. This is for all you nature-lovers out there, who like to prepare food far away from home.
On the flip side, this won’t be an issue if you intend to stay in your backyard. In that case, just make sure the unit is easy to move around. It needs to be convenient to transfer from your apartment or garage to the yard, and back.
The price range will be set according to your budget. However, give a thought about the investment you’re making.
Cheap electric smokers last a shorter amount of time. In some cases, they are not worth the money and they end up being quite costly.
On the other hand, if you invest in a high-quality product, it will inevitably be more durable and less prone to malfunctions. You won’t have to spend money on replacing parts, and these products usually come with a standing warranty.
Tips and Tricks
Choice of Wood
Be sure to carefully choose the wood for your smoker as it will influence the overall flavor of the food. A safe option would be any type of hardwood. Preferably wood like mesquite and hickory are a good choice.
Try to avoid scrap wood and wood which has been treated as this can produce a bad aroma or worse, release harmful gasses. Opt for store-bought, pre-packed firewood.
It is important to remember to soak the wood in water before putting it in the unit. This way, you will have better control over the temperature, and the smoky flavor will come gradually. In the end, wet wood will last longer, and you will have achieved an intense smoky flavor.
This is an old trick most culinary veterans will know of. To reach the perfect flavor, you can preseason the unit beforehand. Be sure to set the temperature to 275 degrees and leave it for a generous amount of time – at least 2 hours.
Although this seems a bit excessive, it is a useful part of the preparation process. Once you’ve applied this technique, you’ll definitely notice the difference. Your food will have a distinct and unique flavor.
Treat the Meat
People usually smoke different types of meat and fish. The smoking process will inevitably depend on the kind of meat, its thickness, and size, as well as its natural juiciness or dryness. Based on these characteristics you will decide what temperature you’ll need to smoke the meat properly.
What is more, you will want to avoid drying out the meat as it will lose on the flavor. Make sure you baste the meat at least once during the smoking process. If it naturally has a dry texture, baste it twice.
One of the most important rules of maintaining a smoker is to clean it out regularly. This includes getting the excess food, grease, and oil off of the unit after every use. This will keep the racks from going rancid.
Remember to clean the unit more thoroughly at least twice a year with vinegar and water. This will be easy if you can take it apart and wash each part separately. However, if this is not the case, make sure to clean at least the cooking racks properly.
Cleaning will be much easier if you remember to preheat the unit beforehand. Avoid using any hard chemicals in the cleaning process. Also, never leave the smoker on longer than needed. The high temperatures make the leftover food and grease stick to the cooking racks.
Nothing compares to the rich aroma of well-smoked meat and veggies. While this type of food preparation used to be quite a hassle, nowadays, it is far more manageable and carefree.
You don’t have to be an expert to get a quality smoky flavor anymore. All you’ll need is the right equipment to explore your cooking abilities further.
The leading products on the market will have a high functioning heating system, precise temperature control and reading, and will have quality build. The additional perks in the design will include easy setup, advanced cleaning system, and user-friendly portability.
New smokers are designed with a ‘set it and forget it’ idea in mind. This means that their remote control systems allow you to prepare food without having to check on it all the time. Get yourself a quality smoker which will achieve the unique flavor and tender texture, without you having to break a sweat.