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bbq-smoker

The UK's bestBBQ Smokers2022 Review

What To Look For in a BBQ Smoker

If you want to get the most flexibility out of a BBQ smoker, look for a multi-functional model that can grill, smoke and bake. At the very least, look for a combined grill and smoker. If you’re passionate about al-fresco dining, smokers that also offer the possibility to bake food often have facilities for cooking bread and pizza as well as meat.

Cylindrical smokers are the best type for taking camping and to the beach. They’re more compact and can generally fit in the back of the car. If transporting your BBQ smoker is a priority, go for an option that weighs around 20 kg. These will generally be made of steel and may have porcelain coatings to help retain heat and stop food sticking.

Some of the best BBQ smokers are made from ceramic. This retains heat well which is great for slow cooking, but is extremely heavy so only appropriate for cooking at home.

As a general guide, when grilling food, a grill that’s 30 cm in diameter will cater to small-to-medium groups. A 50 cm grill will feed around 10 people. If entertaining guests is a main priority, large ‘range’ smokers will offer a lot of space to cook different foods. A warming rack can also be useful to look out for if cooking for a lot of people.

To generally facilitate the cooking process, there are some additional features that it can help to look out for, such as foldable side tables, built-in thermometers and cool-touch tabs and handles.

After comparing a range of BBQ smokers, my top choice is the ProQ BBQ Smoker. It offers four functions, making it possible to BBQ, grill, roast and smoke food, and is big enough to feed up to 12 people. At the same time, it’s lightweight at 16 kg, so can be taken on trips.

For more details about this BBQ smoker, as well as some other great options, check out the reviews below.

See the best BBQ Smokers below

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  • Our score
  • Best For
  • Power Source
  • Grill Size
  • Number of Functions
  • Dimensions
  • Outer Materials
  • Weight
  • Wheels?
  • Cover Included?

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Read Our BBQ Smoker Reviews

B00PC23BAM
5060252162173
Best for versatility
ProQ BBQ Smoker
Top Pick

Best for versatility

  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 5
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    40cm
  • Number of Functions
    4 in 1
  • Dimensions
    43x43x102cm
  • Outer Materials
    Stainless steel
  • Weight
    ‎16kg
  • Wheels?
    No
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    If you’re looking for versatility, the ProQ BBQ Smoker is a great all-rounder. It offers four functions in one compact unit. You can BBQ, grill, roast or smoke food. This smoker makes it easy for you to switch between functions so you can adjust it quickly depending on how you want to cook.

    It’s large enough to feed up to 12 people at once, yet has a compact body and frame which makes it easy to move and store. The grill is 40 cm in diameter and the whole smoker measures 43 x 43 x 102 cm in total.

    Although this smoker doesn’t have wheels, it’s the lightest model featured here, weighing ‎16 kg. This makes it convenient to lift and move around. So, if you only have a small garden, or want to take a BBQ/Smoker on holiday or to the beach, this model is ideal!

    Another thing that makes it easy to use away from home is the fact that it’s fuelled by charcoal. This means it can be set up anywhere, given that charcoal is safe and easy to transport. There’s a built-in lid thermometer and multiple air vents which allow you to keep an eye on cooking temperature and control it with ease. The thermometer offers a good ball-park guide, but it’s also a good idea to use an additional digital thermometer for accuracy.

    The vents, latches and handles are all fitted with orange-coloured ‘cool-touch tabs’. This prevents you from touching any of the hot metal components whilst cooking.

    The body is constructed from 1 mm thick plate steel and coated in porcelain. The grill and all the fittings are made from rust-resistant stainless steel.

    There are a couple of additional features to help with cooking food. Firstly, the ProQ BBQ Smoker comes with five meat hooks to help with smoking meat. It is also fitted with silicone ‘probe eyelets’ around the outside which allow you to insert a probe thermometer into food without opening the lid and letting out heat.

    As this is a small, compact unit, it doesn’t have any side tables or preparation areas attached. It’s also low to the ground, particularly when used as a BBQ, which may not suit all users.

    Nevertheless, it’s one of the best BBQ smokers in terms of performance and convenience. It allows you to cook for up to 12 people, and can be used as a BBQ, grill, oven or smoker. Plus, the fact it’s lightweight and fuelled by charcoal makes it easy to use away from home.

    Pros

    • Stackable design means it can be used to smoke different meats on separate levels
    • Capable of ‘low and slow’ smoke cooking
    • Uses charcoal fuel and only weighs 16 kg so can be used on beach and camping trips
    • Feeds up to 12 people at once and can easily fit an entire chicken
    • All vents and handles have ‘cool-touch tabs’ so you can avoid touching hot metal

    Cons

    • Built-in thermometer offers more of a rough guide than accurate reading - best to use an additional probe thermometer
    • No attached side tables for easy preparation
    • No cover included or compatible cover available to buy

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B0793S5XYS
4779039710896
Best for large groups
KAMADO BONO Ceramic Smoker BBQ

Best for large groups

  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4.8
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    59cm
  • Number of Functions
    3 in 1
  • Dimensions
    128x80x120cm
  • Outer Materials
    Ceramic
  • Weight
    112kg
  • Wheels?
    Yes
  • Cover Included?
    Yes
  • Our Review

    If you’re looking for the best BBQ smoker for gatherings and large groups, the KAMADO BONO Grande Ceramic Smoker BBQ is an ideal choice. This smoker has a large cooking area, with a 59 cm diameter grill. It’s ideal for feeding 10 or more people at once.

    This smoker offers three cooking functions: grill, smoke, and oven. It’s even possible to cook pizza and bake bread, which is great news for al-fresco dining.

    It has a multi-levelled cooking space, across two tiers, so you can easily cook different dishes at the same time. This is another feature that makes it particularly useful for gatherings. Also, the two attached side tables make food preparation hassle-free, even when feeding a big group of people.

    Like most of the smokers on this page, the KAMADO BONO is charcoal-fuelled. It has a built-in thermometer and two vents, so you can keep an eye on the temperature and control it whilst cooking. Controlling the temperature works particularly well with this smoker BBQ and gives great results.

    This is the only smoker on this page that’s made from ceramic. Ceramic retains heat very well which is great for even cooking and using less fuel. However, the downside of this construction is that this BBQ smoker is the heaviest here, weighing 112 kg. It’s also the biggest unit, measuring 128 x 80 x 120 cm, so it’s not portable for trips. Despite its size, it comes with four sturdy wheels to make it easy to move around the garden when needed.

    It comes with a cover included, designed to protect the BBQ smoker from any weather. Other included accessories include hooks on the side tables for your cooking utensils and a ceramic chicken rack. This makes it possible to evenly cook a whole chicken without drying it out.

    Assembly is straightforward. Only the stand needs putting together and everything required comes included. Whilst tightening the nuts is a little time consuming, it’s not difficult overall.

    It would be remiss not to mention that this is a premium BBQ Smoker, and as such, it’s an expensive model. Nevertheless, it’s well worth the investment if you’re passionate about cooking and want something that will give you lots of opportunities to experiment.

    As stated, this is a great BBQ smoker for gatherings thanks to its large capacity, functional side tables, and staggered cooking area. It’s also easy to use to create great results and can be used to bake bread as well.

    Pros

    • Large cooking area to feed 10 or more people at once
    • Can be used to bake bread as well as cook and smoke meat
    • Ceramic body retains heat well which can help with using less fuel
    • Included cover to protect the smoker when not in use
    • Controlling the temperature is easily done using the vents

    Cons

    • Heavy and large means it’s not portable - home use only
    • Can be a bit time-consuming to tighten all the bolts during assembly

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B00GJEPTJS
0789792166209
Best for durability
Char Griller Akorn Kamado Kooker Grill and Smoker
  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4.6
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    50cm
  • Number of Functions
    2 in 1
  • Dimensions
    114.3x78.7x119.4cm
  • Outer Materials
    Metal
  • Weight
    45kg
  • Wheels?
    Yes
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    The Char Griller Akorn Kamado Kooker Grill and Smoker offers good value for money. It’s multi-functional, acting as a grill, smoker and warmer, yet comes in at a fraction of the price of similar models featured here. It’s made from 22-gauge steel which is powder-coated on the exterior and has a porcelain-coating on the interior. The cooking area is made from cast iron and the cart underneath is made from tubular steel.

    The smoker offers two primary functions: grill and smoker. There is also a removable warming rack to keep meat warm whilst cooking other things. Granted, there aren’t as many functions as some of the other smokers featured here, but it’s effective at what it does and is simple to use.

    The grill is 50 cm in diameter, providing enough space to cook for medium-to-large groups. It’ll fit approximately five burger patties at a time. There are two metal side tables to help with food preparation and the tables have useful hooks for hanging cooking utensils. The tables fold down out of the way when not in use.

    The smoker is fuelled by charcoal, and it has triple walls to help maintain heat.

    Due to its steel construction, it’s quite heavy at 45 kg. This means it’s best suited to entertaining at home, as opposed to taking on trips. There are large, 20 cm wheels at the front and a locking castor wheel at the rear. This makes the smoker easy and safe to move around when needed.

    There’s a built-in temperature gauge, as well as a top and bottom damper to help you maintain the ideal temperature during cooking. Once you’re finished cooking, there’s an easy-dump ash pan to make cleaning up as easy as possible.

    It doesn’t come with a cover to protect it when not in use, and it’s fairly big at 114.3 x 78.7 x 119.4 cm, so keep that in mind for storage.

    Overall, this is one of the best BBQ smokers in terms of value for money. Although it doesn’t have all the features of more premium models, it still offers grilling and smoking and a surprising amount of space – both on the grill, and on the two foldable side tables.

    Pros

    • Two functions: grill and smoker
    • Easy to collect and empty ash using the tray
    • Grill is large enough to fit approximately five burger patties
    • Hooks on side tables for hanging utensils
    • Side tables fold down for more compact storage

    Cons

    • No cover included to protect smoker when not in use
    • Although good value for money, does not offer the same quality as more premium models

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B0749Q79YL
5060381721609
Best for portability
CosmoGrill Outdoor XL Smoker Barbecue
  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4.7
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    58x42.5cm
  • Number of Functions
    2 in 1
  • Dimensions
    124x66x113cm
  • Outer Materials
    Stainless steel
  • Weight
    24kg
  • Wheels?
    Yes
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    This CosmoGrill Outdoor XL Smoker Barbecue is one of the best BBQ smokers to buy on a budget.

    You can use this model as a grill or smoker, and the grill is reasonably large at 58 x 42.5 cm, making it ideal for cooking for large groups. The rectangular cooking grill provides enough space to cook 10 burger patties alongside 10 sausages with room left over too. There’s a warming rack over the grill which keeps your food warm once it’s cooked.

    One beneficial feature, that makes this budget BBQ smoker different to other models on this page, is the height-adjustable charcoal tray. It can be moved closer to, or further from, the food to give even more control over the cooking temperature.

    Plus, the built-in thermometer gives accurate readings that help take the guesswork out of grilling. There’s also a chimney and air vents to help you control the temperature, so lots of ways to keep it burning as you want.

    This smoker is made from powder-coated steel and is one of the lightest models here at 24 kg. There are two side tables to give you plenty of workspace, and they fold down for transportation and storage. There are hooks on the side tables for your equipment and there’s even a bottle opener built into the BBQ which is a nice touch.

    One thing to be aware of, which you may not expect, is the fact that this BBQ smoker arrives flat packed. It takes around one-to-two hours to put together. The manufacturers recommend two people to assemble. Another disadvantage to this smoker’s design is the fact that there’s no handle, so it can be a little awkward to grab onto when wheeling it around.

    Nevertheless, this is still a good BBQ smoker to buy on a budget – marked at a very reasonable price point. It’s a large size, and extremely functional, even if it lacks some of the more intricate functions of more expensive models.

    Pros

    • Being able to adjust the height of the coal tray, using the turning handle, makes it easy to control the heat
    • Thanks to the front door, coal can be added around the grill, without having to remove grills or food
    • Two caster wheels for easy transportation
    • Cleaning is straightforward as some of the grill racks can fit in the dishwasher
    • Will comfortably cater for 8 - 10 people or more
    • Built-in temperature gauge, chimney, and air vents to control cooking temperature

    Cons

    • Assembly may take one to two hours (although instructions are easy to follow)
    • No handle which can make it a little awkward to wheel around
    • There's no drain for grease so you may need to find another way to remove it

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B01BOQ6E7G
5709193020400
Best gas smoker
Char-Broil The Big Easy® - Smoker, Roaster and Grill
  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4.5
  • Power Source
    Gas
  • Grill Size
    38.5cm
  • Number of Functions
    3 in 1
  • Dimensions
    59.4x58.7x92cm
  • Outer Materials
    Stainless steel
  • Weight
    ‎22.7kg
  • Wheels?
    No
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    For those who prefer the simplicity of gas cooking, the Char-Broil The Big Easy® – Smoker, Roaster and Grill is a great option. It lights easily with built-in ignition and can be used as a BBQ, oven and smoker. The smoker function uses wood chips in an easy-access smoker box.

    It’s a small, compact model that is easy to move around, yet it can still cook up to 11 kg of meat. The grill is 38.5 cm in diameter, the smallest grill here, and is suitable for cooking for small-to-medium groups. The grill is porcelain coated for easy cleaning, and can quickly be removed to use the other functions.

    One of the best features of this smoker is the roasting basket, which can be used when roasting or smoking meat. It’s possible to cook a whole chicken this way and cleaning up afterwards is easy. The meat is loaded into the roasting basket which fits easily within the cylindrical cooking drum. It also comes with four rib hooks so you can cook the perfect ribs. There’s a removable grease tray to catch drips as well.

    When used as a smoker, you will likely need to use more wood chips than you are used to (if you have previous experience with smoking food). This is because the air vents on the top of the unit do allow quite a lot of smoke to escape. It’s capable of smoking food well, but may need to be kept an eye on.

    This model also features a TRU-Infrared cooking system. This means that it converts the hot air that’s generated into infrared heat. The system is intended to cook food more evenly and be more energy efficient, using less gas.

    Also, although there are no wheels, this is one of the lighter models featured here at ‎22.7 kg. As a result, it can be lifted fairly easily, although you might need two people.

    Despite a couple of downsides, this is one of the best gas-powered BBQ smokers on the market. The roasting basket is a particularly quick and easy way to cook meat, and it’s useful that it still includes a small grill for easy gas BBQing.

    Pros

    • Roasting basket can fit a whole chicken
    • Removable grease tray to catch drips for easy cleanup
    • Easy-access smoker box for wood chips
    • Sturdy base gives good stability

    Cons

    • Due to holes in top, needs quite a lot of wood chips to maintain smoke
    • There is an initial learning curve when cooking with the roasting basket
    • No built-in thermomete

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B01DTXUUJA
5709193020455
Best single function smoker
Char-Broil Oklahoma Joe’s® Highland Smoker

Best single function smoker

  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4.5
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    88x44cm
  • Number of Functions
    1
  • Dimensions
    85.1x144.8x134.6cm
  • Outer Materials
    Steel
  • Weight
    83.7kg
  • Wheels?
    Yes
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    Suitable for both grilling and smoking, this Char-Broil Oklahoma Joe’s® Highland Smoker is a unit that means business. It even looks the part, designed as a full-sized standing smoker, which sets it apart from most models on this page.

    It’s charcoal-fuelled and has a large 88 x 44 cm grill. This provides plenty of room to cook for large groups of people.

    Built with the intricacies of smoking food in mind, the separate firebox is positioned off to the side. It has an easy-access door meaning you can add extra wood, stoke the fire, and control the smoking element without needing to lift the lid off the main grill. The grill lid has a temperature gauge and there are multiple vents, which allow you to control the temperature with ease.

    This smoker features a smokestack on the lid with adjustable dampers. This helps to draw the smoke through the cooking chamber and regulate the heat.

    There’s a long shelf in front of the BBQ which provides space to prepare food or rest your tools. Also, the handles on this smoker are ‘cool touch’ to reduce accidents when cooking.

    It’s constructed from heavy-gauge steel and is reasonably heavy. It weighs 83.7 kg and is quite large overall. The dimensions are 85.1 x 144.8 x 134.6 cm, making it the biggest BBQ smoker featured here. Keep this in mind when considering storage! Despite its size, it has large, sturdy castor wheels to allow you to move it with ease. The steel is coated with black paint which is prone to peeling when it gets hot.

    Besides this, the main downside to this BBQ smoker is that it’s less versatile than the other models on this list. It’s mostly aimed at being used as a smoker, though it can also grill food. Nevertheless, it’s equipped to do this one function extremely well.

    This is one of the best BBQ smokers if you’re keen to experiment and learn about different ways to smoke food. Its design is well-equipped for smoking and it’s a great size to test out different foods and techniques.

    Pros

    • Heavy-gauge steel construction for durability
    • Large 88 x 44cm grill to cook for large groups
    • Temperature gauge, smokestack, and multiple vents for heat control
    • Side firebox with easy access door
    • Cool-touch handles for safety

    Cons

    • Paint can be prone to peeling with regular use at high temperatures
    • Large body which can make it hard to store

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B07BJBXF3T
0789792148229
Best for simplicity
Char-Griller Premium Red Kettle Charcoal Grill and Smoker
  • Where to buy
  • Our Scoring
    Design
    Cooking Options
    Features
    Safety
    Value for Money
    Overall
    5 4
  • Power Source
    Charcoal
  • Grill Size
    50cm
  • Number of Functions
    2 in 1
  • Dimensions
    71.1x76.2x104.1cm
  • Outer Materials
    Not listed
  • Weight
    ‎27.2kg
  • Wheels?
    Yes
  • Cover Included?
    No
  • Our Review

    The Char-Griller Premium Red Kettle Charcoal Grill and Smoker is one of the best BBQ smokers if you want something simple yet effective. It’s simple to use and easy to control, with a built-in temperature gauge and dual damper controls. This allows you to easily and accurately adjust the temperature when needed.

    This model can be used as either a grill or a smoker. The 50 cm diameter grill is big enough to cook for medium-to-large groups, catering to around eight people. There are two fold-out side shelves for food preparation, and they have attached hooks for your cooking utensils. The lid is hinged which is useful for cooking, and relatively uncommon with round grills.

    This smoker is fuelled by charcoal and holds its temperature well, reaching approximately 240°C. Once you’re finished cooking, there’s a removable ash tray so you can clean up with ease.

    It’s quite compact, measuring 71.1 x 76.2 x 104.1 cm. This makes it suitable if you don’t have much storage space. There are two heavy-duty wheels that make it easier to move around, from the shed to the garden. It’s worth noting it doesn’t come with a cover to protect it when not in use, so it will need to be stored indoors or you’ll need to find a suitable cover.

    Suitable for medium/large gatherings, this is one of the best BBQ smokers if you want a unit that will successfully smoke food whilst being a decent size for standard BBQing as well. It’s also sufficiently compact to mean that it is not too difficult to store either.

    Pros

    • 50 cm diameter grill to cook for medium to large groups
    • Two fold-out side shelves with hooks for utensils
    • Can maintain heat well for slow cooking over several hours
    • Hinged lid is practical when cooking
    • Reaches temperatures of approximately 240°C

    Cons

    • Doesn’t come with a cover for protection when not in use
    • Paint can be prone to peeling with regular use
    • Assembly can be time consuming

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How to Choose The Best BBQ Smoker

The joy of owning a BBQ smoker is that you have the ability to be so much more creative with your summer food choices.

Not only that, but most BBQ smokers have an impressive capacity and make it so much easier to juggle cooking several meals and portions at the same time. Plus, built-in thermometers in BBQ smokers take the guesswork (and stress!) out of BBQ cooking.

So, summer’s on its way! What are you waiting for! Let’s make sure you get the best BBQ smoker for your money and don’t end up with something sub-par. The following advice should help you make an informed decision:

BBQ Smoker Design

The most important things to consider are versatility, portability and capacity.

Versatility

The best BBQ smokers can be used for various functions – not just smoking food. A unit that can be used as at least a grill and smoker will offer more versatility. If you’re really passionate about outdoor cooking, look for a smoker that can bake food as well. This opens up even more possibilities, making it possible to bake items like bread and pizza.

Portability

If you’re an outdoorsy person, you might want a BBQ smoker that you can take on camping trips or to the beach. In this case, it’s got to be sufficiently small. Look out for a grilling area of around 30 cm in diameter, this should make the unit easy enough to manage and fit in the car. When it comes to weight, you’ll want to go for something around the 20 kg mark. Some smokers, even reasonably compact ones, can weigh in excess of 80 kg – needless to say, these aren’t ideal for taking on holiday!

If you want a smoker to use in your garden, you’re obviously much less limited in terms of size and design. If you do choose a bigger, heavier smoker, make sure it has wheels so you don’t have to carry it.

Capacity

Depending on the size and design of the smoker, you’ll be able to cater to different numbers of people and cook different types of meat.

Cylindrical smokers can have a good capacity for fitting entire chickens, and cook them evenly, as the meat hangs in the centre of the smoker. If there is a grill, a 50 cm diameter grill will be able to accommodate upwards of 10 burger patties, whilst a 30 cm grill will fit approximately five.

Additional Features

Additional features aren’t always necessary, but they can greatly improve your cooking experience so some you might want to look out for are the following:

Built-in Temperature Gauge

A built-in temperature gauge ensures you to know that the correct temperature is set and helps you maintain the fire correctly for whatever you are cooking. This is essential for smoking food. Having a temperature gauge also gets rid of the necessity to keep opening the BBQ/smoker to check on how the food is doing, ultimately detrimental in the long run as this lets heat escape!

Access Points for Meat Probes

Meat probes tend to be long metal probes with a thermometer on the end which can be inserted into food to check it’s cooked/is cooking in the middle. They’re an easy tool to determine when things are cooked and to what level. If your smoker has an access point for a meat probe you can check the meat without opening the smoker and losing the heat and smoke.

Ventilation

Having ventilation on your smoker is important. If you are slow-cooking something for 8 hours you will want ventilation so that the older smoke doesn’t linger as this will affect the taste of the food negatively. On the other hand, if you are cooking something fast you won’t want the smoke escaping so it’s nice to be able to toggle the ventilation.

Good ventilation also helps you control the temperature allowing you to smoke things faster or slower.

Choosing the Right Size

Smokers come in a range of sizes. Some are large enough to cook several whole chickens which is great for parties, and others are portable so can easily be taken to the beach or camping.

As a general guide, a smoker with a 30 cm grilling area will generally be compact enough to travel with, but can feed at least five people. A 50 cm grill, or more, will feed upwards of 10 people.

Number of Compartments

The number of compartments will also effect the size of the unit. Most BBQ smokers have two or  three main compartments. The first section is at the bottom and this is the heat source. The second section is in the middle and is filled with water to provide smoke. The third section is the cooking section.

If these are stacked on top of each other, the smoker remains fairly compact. If these compartments are spread out across a range, the smoker can be pretty wide.

Wood Type for Smoking

Different types of wood create different flavours in food when smoking. Part of the fun of using a smoker is experimenting with different woods and creating new flavours.

Below, you’ll find a list of some of the most popular wood types to use for smoking food. Be aware that not all wood is safe for use with food, and you should never use a wood if you don’t know what it is. If you’re planning to try out a new wood type, research it first to make sure that it’s not toxic and is safe for smoking food.

  • Apple Wood – gives a light, fruity flavour and goes well with both poultry and pork. Crab apple wood also gives a similar effect.
  • Ash Wood – a subtle flavour that is quite distinctive, may be preferred by some and not others! Good with fish.
  • Hickory Wood  – one of the most common woods used for smoking, gives a strong smoked flavour. Good with beef, pork and ham.
  • Maple Wood – creates a slightly sweet flavour. Goes well with poultry and cheese.
  • Oak Wood – a thick, strong smoked flavour. Commonly used for a range of different meats.
  • Red Oak Wood – touted as going particularly well with ribs

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BBQ Smoker FAQs

How do I use a smoker BBQ?

  1. The first thing to do is to light your heat source. This could be starting a wood or charcoal fire at the bottom, or lighting the gas or simply turning on the smoker if it uses electric.
  2. The heat source you use will affect the taste of your food. Using a nice smelling wood like cherry can really add to the taste. Experiment with different heat sources from charcoal to different woods to find out what you like.
  3. For added smoke, you can use woodchips wrapped in pierced aluminium foil. This can add good flavour to your food and save you money. A good method is to use charcoal to start a nice long fire and add wood chips inside the foil pouch to add a nice smoky flavour of your choice.
  4. The next step is to fill your water compartment. Water is often used on its own, however, you can use this water compartment to add flavour to your food. Adding a mixture of water and wine can add nice flavour to your meal. You can also use stock and add herbs and spices to really impress your guests.
  5. Place the top compartment over the water and secure it tightly. You can then place what you are cooking inside this top compartment and cover it with the lid.
  6. From here it’s a matter of patience and maintaining the fire. You might need to top the fire and water up depending on what you are cooking and for how long for.

How does a BBQ smoker work?

Smokers are designed to smoke food to add flavour and to maintain a low heat for a long period of time to slow cook things. The most common type is the vertical smoker.

Vertical smokers have three compartments. At the lowest compartment, you put whatever you are using to generate heat and smoke. This can be wood or charcoal depending on personal preference and what your smoker is designed for.

The middle compartment is for water. This is a key component to your smoker as it regulates the heat of the smoker keeping it from running too hot and allowing you to cook things low and slow. It also adds moisture to whatever you are smoking keeping it tender and juicy.

Finally, you have what’s called the smoking chamber. This is positioned above the water and is where you place the food.

Can you use a smoker as a BBQ?

This depends on the model you buy. A lot of smokers will have multiple functions, allowing you to use them as a traditional BBQ among other functions such as roasting or baking your food. Be sure to double-check this in the description if you want that option.

What’s the difference between a smoker and a grill?

The main difference between a smoker and a grill is the cooking time and temperature. With a grill, food is cooked at a higher temperature and is cooked quickly. On the other hand, a smoker cooks food on a lower heat over a longer period of time. With smoking, meat tends to be juicer and more tender. The fuel you use to produce the smoke and the smoke itself adds to the flavour of your food.

Is there any wood type that shouldn’t be used in a BBQ smoker?

Yes. You should be careful about what type of wood you burn. Avoid any softwoods like pine, conifers, redwood, spruce etc. Not only do these give foods an unpleasant taste, they contain a large amount of terpenes which can cause sickness.

You should also avoid wood that has been chemically treated (this includes trees that have been sprayed with pesticides), has mould on it, or wood that comes from toxic trees like yew.

Don’t use any wood if you don’t know what it is, and always research if the wood you’re planning to use is safe for smoking food.

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BBQ Smokers Price Comparison

Every day DIY Garden scans thousands of products to help you find the cheapest prices. Not only do we want to help you find the best products through our in-depth testing, but we also want to help you find the best places to buy them too. We’re working hard to expand our network of retailers, and will be continually adding in new options.

The Cheapest BBQ Smoker Prices Found Today

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