Never used a best electric smoker before or you’re new to it or better you might even want to learn it. So as to make the selection process easier for you, we’ll be reviewing the best electric smokers that are available on the market. Thus you’ll know exactly how they work, what their features are as well as if they’ll be meeting needs, are to your tastes and standards.
An electric smoker is one of the best things to have as it enables you to cook or smoke your meat at different levels within the smoker and depending onto the brand, you might even add wood flavors to the different cut of meats. It is also handy when having a small party, event or just the weekend in family.
Below are a list of the top 10 electric smokers we’ll be reviewing and testing and they are as follows:
|#1. Masterbuilt 20071117 30″ Digital Electric Smoker||Check Price||19.9 x 20.5 x 33.3 inches||39.3 pounds|
|#2. Smoke Hollow 30162EW 30-Inch Electric Smoker||Check Price||19.9 x 22.5 x 37.8 inches||47 pounds|
|#3. Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch||Check Price||16.5 x 18.1 x 32.5 inches||50.2 pounds|
|#4. Masterbuilt 20078616 Electric Bullet Smoker||Check Price||19.1 x 25.4 x 31.5 inches||17.58 pounds|
|#5. Char-Broil Analog Electric Smoker||Check Price||15 x 20.7 x 33.5 inches||49.5 pounds|
|#6. Dyna-Glo DGU505BAE-D 30″ Analog Electric Smoker||Check Price||23.5 x 18.4 x 35.9 inches||46.3 pounds|
|#7. Masterbuilt 20075315 Front Controller Smoker with Viewing Window||Check Price||25 x 20.1 x 40.1 inches||73 pounds|
|#8. Old Smokey Electric Smoker||Check Price||17.5 x 17.5 x 29 inches||23 pounds|
|#9. Smoke Hollow 30162E 30-Inch Electric Smoker Temperature Control||Check Price||31 x 15 x 17 inches||47.2 pounds|
|#10. Bradley Smoker BTDS76P Bradley Digital 4-Rack Smoker||Check Price||14 x 14 x 31 inches||57.5 pounds|
Click to jump straight to each topic
- Top 10 Electric Smoker reviews for 2018
- 1. Masterbuilt 20071117 30″ Digital Electric Smoker
- 2. Smoke Hollow 30162EW 30-Inch Electric Smoker
- 3. Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch
- 4. Masterbuilt 20078616 Electric Bullet Smoker
- 5. Char-Broil Analog Electric Smoker
- 6. Dyna-Glo DGU505BAE-D 30″ Analog Electric Smoker
- 7. Masterbuilt 20075315 Front Controller Smoker with Viewing Window
- 8. Old Smokey Electric Smoker
- 9. Smoke Hollow 30162E 30-Inch Electric Smoker
- 10. Bradley Smoker Digital 4-Rack Smoker
- The reasons to buy a best electric smoker
- The benefits of having a best electric smoker
- How to season an electric smoker?
- How to maintain your electric smoker?
- How to choose a best electric smoker?
- Important Tips in Using an Electric Smoker
Top 10 Electric Smoker reviews for 2018
Now without any further ado, let’s start the reviewing process:
The 30-inch Masterbuilt electric digital smoker is a step up from its analog predecessor. It has a few more benefits and features than the latter. Once you get it, it is mostly like a mini smokehouse. For greater temperature accuracy, there are digital controls for the temperature. So that you food is not overcooked, there is a 24 hour timer on the digital temperature settings panel and once the timer is up, the device automatically shuts down.
With a temperature range of 100 – 275 degrees F, the latter is perfect for cooking fish, jerky and even for BBQ with the only issue for some people is the slow cooking rate although it is good for the taste. The latter also as a great amount of interior capacity surface and with four racks, you have around 700 square inches of cooking area.
The digital panel displays the temperature as well as the time and make it easy to read. If you want, it is also possible to add wood chips for a better meat perfume and this is done without opening the smoker door. For consistent and constant smoking and temperature control, a thermostat is included. The body is also fully-insulated so there is no loss of heat and no risk of getting small burns.
- Large surface for cooking
- Surface is insulated
- Digital panel for temperature control
- 24 hour timer and Automatic shutdown feature
- Temperature does not get higher than 275 degrees F
- The wood chip area is smaller than older model
Since it uses electricity, you won’t have to worry about ever running out of gas with the Smoke Hollow 30 inch. This electric smoker also has a double wall construction and the heat that is generated by the electricity is absorbed and then evenly distributed through these walls. This makes sure that your food is evenly cooked. It is also easy to operate and easy to understand if you’ve used an oven before. As for the cooking surface, with 3 cooking grids, it is well enough for a few people. Proper smoking temperatures is also maintained thanks to the double walled construction. You also won’t have to worry about smoke escaping while checking the food thanks to the window in the door.
If you are not using it, the 5 ft.supply cord can also be easily removed. Let’s now check it pros and cons below.
- The double wall allow for efficient temperature control
- With 3 cooking grid, there is enough room to smoke most things
- With the window display, it is easy to check the food without opening the door
- The supply cord is removable when not in use
- The material is it made from is not of high quality
- Temperature thermostat quality is also not great
- The wood chip placement is not ideal
The Char-Broil Deluxe Electric Smoker is one of the toughest electric smokers out there. The latter comes in a dual-tone finish made up of black and metallic colors. Giving it a modern look are the built-in handle as well as the rounded edges. Since the exterior walls are made up of stainless steel, you are pretty much assured of its strength and its capacity of holding up high level of temperatures and heat. The heat generated inside is also not lost since the dual walls of this smoker makes sure that they are easily absorbed and redistributed evenly.
The latter also has an integrated timer between 00:00-19:00 hours. As the unit operates, the display will switch between the timer and the temperature reading. Once your timer is finished, you will hear a beep while the temperature drops.
The glass onto the door is also of high quality and durable. However it can get really hot so better not try touching it. There is also a latch that is made up of stainless steel that will secure the door and makes sure smoke is kept tightly in. Coming with 4 chrome plated cooking racks, they are also of very high quality and durable.
- It is made of solid material
- The stainless steel latch makes sure it is safe and smoke is not lost while smoking
- Has an integrated timer which is easy to use
- Has a pretty modern look that will fit well in any kitchen
- Heat is not lost and is instead absorbed and redistributed
- The temperature display is hard to see
- The panel is also made of cheap and fragile material
- The remote control is also pretty fragile
The Masterbuilt has an interior cooking surface of 395 square feet. In addition to that, it has 2 smoking racks which are coated in porcelain. The temperature can go up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It provides an even and consistent smoking since it features a heating element that can go up to 1650 watts. So as to easily read the temperature, the lid as a temperature gauge that is built in.
The latter is also very easy to clean although it requires a specific way to be cleaned or cared. The cleaning process is done by removing the lid and cleaning each rack with a wet cloth.Smoking is also easily done since all you have to do is add water to the water bowl and add some wood chips and set it to the desired temperature. Adding too much water in the tray can however delay the cooking time.
Overall, you can get consistent smoking at the temperature it offers and the two porcelain coated racks provides ample space for cooking and the temperature gauge seems to be easy to read.
- It is easy to clean
- Heat is evenly distributed
- Has ample space for smoking
- Very easy to use
- The material it is made from it not very durable
- There are some issues it getting it to the desired temperature
- Some materials can be missing in the package
This is the more modern version of the vertical electric smoker from charbroil. It has 3 adjustable cooking grid as well as 544 square inches of cooking space. Since it has a 1200 watt heating element, it can provide a pretty good smoking experience. Since it has a double insulation, the smoke and heat are well contained as long as you don’t open the doors now and then to see what is going on inside since the door doesn’t have a glass display.
The doors have a built-in temperature gauge allowing you to read the temperature inside. The wood tray is however not that big but still usable. The water pain, made from aluminum makes sure that the meat is cooked well in the entire smoking process. The drip tray is also removable which makes it easy to clean.
However like previous version, this smoker does not have wheels so that you can push it around.
- Easy to Use
- It is affordable
- Has a 1200 watt heating element
- No wheels to move it around
- No glass window to check food
- Locking system is not that great
Offering multiple features that will simplify your cooking process, the DGU505BAE is a very convenient smoker. It has 3 cooking grates which are chrome plated as well as being adjustable. So as to facilitate the addition of wood chips, on the side, it has a wood chip loader. Also allowing for precise heat control and monitoring is the manual control temperature dial. It will pretty much give you a dynamic cooking experience, whether it is outdoor or indoor. The cooking area is pretty large at 505 square inches. Having a 1650 watt burner means your food will be evenly smoked at the required temperatures.
The only real problem which will only affect beginners is that there is no glass onto the door meaning you’ll have to set the temperature and be patient without opening the doors. If you decide to open the door, then the heat will leak out and you’ll lose all the smoke too.
Now let’s see what it has to offer in terms of pros and cons.
- 1650-watt heating element
- Simple to use even for beginners
- No wheels
- No glass on the doors
This model of the Masterbuilt electric smoker is made for both professionals as well as beginners, whether it be for the cooking industry or just a home. The reason that it is the best for professionals as well as beginners is because it is simple and easy to use. Without the inconvenience or charcoal or propane in your backyard, it makes smoking really simple and allows you to get the best results in terms of smoking meat and most kinds of food. The latter is achieved simply by plugging the electric smoker, setting the digital controls and just do what you have to do and your food will be ready. Since it also comes with an RF control, you can set the temperature and time from your couch and the smoker will do the cooking for you.
Also with 975 square inches of cooking space available, you will have enough space to cook for a lot of people which is pretty ideal for all kinds of events. The wood chip loading system is also smooth. Along with the 4 cooking racks that is supplied, there is an internal light as well as a heating element that can reach up to 1200 watt.
- It has a patented side wood chip loading-system
- It has a viewing window to monitor the food through its entire cooking process
- Comes with 4 chrome-coated smoking racks
- It also a has a digital panel and an RF remote control
- The material some parts are made from are prone to denting
- If wrongly operated, it can produce little smoke
The old smoker electric smoker is exactly what you need is you are one of the people who like to make your smoked meat or chicken juicy. The latter can either be used indoor or outdoor depending on your preference. It also made of aluminum steel making it rust resistant. It you’re a fan then it comes grey in color. It also has a flat top which allows the juice to drip back. Most of the features are very interesting and can be of great use. The integrated thermostat will automatically control the temperature. It also has a chip tray where pellets or wood are put to make your meat have the flavor of your choice (depending on the wood aroma). It comes with two cooking racks which is ideal for a small family. The lid can also be closed when cooking obviously. It is a worthy investment even though it doesn’t look modern. One thing that makes lot of BBQ lovers like it is its portability. The portability feature is very handy if you are going for picnics, camping or even small parties.
- It can be used as a grill
- The sealed lid captures juices from the food for a greater taste
- It is easily portable
- It’s made of aluminized steel
- The flat top base provides a constant basting to give greater results
- You can adjust temperature according to what you’re cooking
- It only has one con, is that the smoker gets very hot while smoking
This electric smoker is very convenient for outdoor parties, for picnics and even during any leisure travel. Regardless of the type of food, whether it is fish, chicken or beef, you’re pretty much guaranteed of getting a good smoking experience. It also gives you a plethora of food types to prepare since it is swift. The latter also comes with 3 cooking grids that are plated in chrome and they are pretty large which allows you to put a lot of meat cuts on it. Once you’ve started smoking meat with it, it’s the only thing you’ll be wanting to do the whole afternoon. It also have enough cooking area with the grids to allow you to cook multiple food simultaneously. Since it prevents corrosion and rusting, the chrome plating is very good in cutting maintenance cost.
There are also 3 temperature settings as well as a magnetic door latching system to prevent smoke from escape. The 2 sides handles also makes it very convenient for transporting and assembling the parts is also very easy.The two cooking grid’s height are also adjustable and the temperatures range from 175F-325F. The latter also comes black in color and overall it is made of steel. The power cord is also of 5ft long for convenience.
- It is easy to assemble with the help of the user guide
- One can adjust its temperature to suit the food being cooked
- It can cook food for a large number of people
- It can be transported with the use of the 2 carrying handles
- The door ensures that all juices are trapped inside for rich flavor
- If you use it indoor it can be really Smokey.
Both Chefs and sportsmen alike use the Bradley Digital Smokey since it is much more versatile that any other smoker and they can rely on it to produce tasty smoked food on a consistent basis. So as to reduce the negative effect of smoked food taste, the Bradley Digital Smoker comes with electric control, an insulated cabinet as well the automatic Smoke generator. All of these will reduce the fluctuations and interruptions in the smoke production, providing you a much tastier food. There is also an electric grill just for the grill amateurs and enthusiasts. Since the whole equipment is insulated, it is possible to smoke on hot and cold days alike while still maintaining the desired temperature level. Thanks to its complete stainless steel interior, the heat is absorbed and redistributed evenly across the food.
The Bradley Digital Smoker also have a digital interface and can reach a maximum temperature of 280 degrees Fahrenheit. There are separate burners for smoking and the oven. It also has a internal thermostat for better temperature control. The 4 racks are also removable. The cooking interior can retain up to eight hours of smoke.
- It easy to set up, use and clean
- Has a digital interface and internal thermostat
- It can be used in patio, lawn and garden
- Better safety measures incorporated in the design
- It takes a lot of time to get heated
Now that we’re done with the reviewing, let’s check some other important information.
The reasons to buy a best electric smoker
Before getting into the benefits, let’s check the reasons to buy an electric smoker below.
There are a lot of reasons to get a smoker and you should definitely get one. As you may have guessed, smoking is done better in a smoker. Some people who still uses a kettle for smoking are pretty much all frustration by the lack of temperature control feature. The latter will need constant monitoring for fear of food burning and you’ll probably have to check every 10 – 15 minutes and make sure your fire is still burning.
If it’s your first time buying an electric smoker, then you don’t have to worry since the latter can be easily used just the way you use an electric oven. Since they can be set to the desired temperature level as well as the duration you want it to, then you won’t really need a degree to operate it. Purchasing an electric smoker is also great way to get started if you are just getting into meat smoking. Once you’ve gotten the hang of it, you can either move to a smoker or if you prefer it then just stick to it. It’s also one of the best ways of learning basic smoking techniques.
Electric smokers are also much cheaper that your traditional one and it’s not about the initial price, but the long term value for money. Since both electric smokers and your traditional pellet grills and be “set and forget”, they are both pretty good. However on the longer term, the electric smoker wins.
The electric smoker is also much easier to use than the traditional one. Generally speaking, all that is required to run the electric smoker is filling the water tray, throw in the meat cuts, adjusting the temperature and settings then wait. Of course you may wish to use an accessory with it so as to flavor your meat in the different smoke of the wood chips but that is up to you. Using the method with a traditional smoker is an arduous task while with the electric smoker, it is rather easy to do.
One of its most important features is that the latter can be used in places that fire are not allowed like apartments and similar places. It is thus possible for you to use your electric smoker which conveniently happens to work without a fire. That way your party can get going and you don’t really have to monitor with it and tend to your guests or friends.
Cold smoking is also very much made easy using an electric smoker since they are pretty much versatile.
Now let’s get to the benefits of having an electric smoker below then we’ll dive into the reviewing.
The benefits of having a best electric smoker
Low Electricity Consumption
Most electric smokers that you buy use around 800 watts per hour. If you use it for 30 days for 8 hours per day, you will find that the electric smoker does not consume a lot of electricity and is really cheap tooperate. Of course you aren’t going to use them every day in a month. Most people uses them 4 to 5 times per month and you can this operate it without worrying about getting an electricity bill that is high.
No Need For Constant Supervision
Since an electric smoker feeds off electricity, you won’t have to keep monitoring it to make sure that there is enough fuel to burn like the traditional ones. Also as a result of this, you are pretty much free to go around the party and have fun without worrying about keeping the temperature at a desired level since this can already be set.
Most of Them Are Thermostat and Rheostat Equipped
Since most of them will come with those apparatus, which is crucial for food to be cooked evenly, you won’t have to worry about checking it. For example, is the temperature gets above your desired level which you had set, then the temperature will drop since the circuit will be broken. With an electric smoker, you’ll have the control you desire over the temperature at which you want your food to be cooked which cannot be said about other smokers.
Not a Lot of Residue
Since it does not use fuel such as wood and pellets, there is very little residue to clean once you have smoked your meat.
The electric is pretty much a sturdy and solid device since most of them have thick steel legs to support them. It is possible to set it overnight and get a good night of sleep without having to worry about it accidentally falling over.
Clean Energy and Energy Efficient
Since most of them are made of thick steel, the heat it absorbs while cooking is evenly redistributed. Since very little heat is lost, it makes sure that your meat is cooked evenly.Electricity is also a clean source or energy, cleaner than charcoal or propane. This means that the risk of your food getting contaminated is reduced by a lot while the flavor is enhanced.
How to season an electric smoker?
Why season it?
Seasoning your new electric smoker is an important thing to do. Luckily for you, it is pretty easy and simple. You just switch your smoker one without any food inside. The smoke resulting from that will leave a black coating inside of the smoker. If you season your electric smoker that way, then it will remove most residue which might be in the form of dust and oil that is usually left over from the manufacturing process. Most of the time, the residues can be in the form of petroleum substances and may even contain solvents. And these are hazardous to your health and will make your food smell really bad and thus you don’t want them to be hanging around when you’re cooking.
To make sure that there is no residue on the first cook, you might want to wipe the cooker with a sponge as well as some detergent before you start to season it. However make sure that you don’t scratch the surfaces when you do so. Seasoning is also done to prevent rust from developing since the smoke will cure any coating or paint inside the cooker. The small layer of black smoke will also enhance the flavor in your smoked food. Over time, the flavor will only get better as the black coating will build up.
How to do it?
Make sure that your electric smoker is correctly assembled – Most smokers if not already assembled will need a little mounting and assembly. You also have to make sure that all screws at fitted tightly so that it does not come off while moving it.
Clean your smoker – Using a sponge and some detergent, you need to wipe down almost everything in the interior, from the surfaces to the racks and trays. Next you just wash off the soapy residue and let it dry while leaving it open.
Coat the smoker with cooking oil – Using either a spray of a cloth with a small amount of oil, wipe the inside of the cooker. The surfaces don’t need too much oil, just a little light coating is enough. The water tray, grease tray and heating element as well as the chip tray don’t need to be coated.
Place everything back inside – Place all the accessories back inside and when you decide to season, do not full the water tray with water.
Plug your smoker – It is not recommended of using an extension cord when firing your smoker up. If you however still need to use one, then you need to ensure that the cord has an earth pin while also being heavy duty.
Open the top vent – During the seasoning process, you need to make sure that the vent stays fully open.
Set a time to 3 hours and the smoker to 275°F – While some smokers can be seasoned at 250°F, others can be done at 275°F.
In the woodchip loader or tray, add around 9-12 chips – Although some people soak their chips, there is no need to do that as it is not really important. All it does it delaying the time the smoke appears.
Add another 9-12 chips after twenty minutes – After these 20 minutes, there will be ashes into the ashtray and the latter will continue to produce smoke while seasoning the smoker.
Repeat the process after another twenty minutes – You can add a few more wood chips, however you need to make sure not too overload the chop tray. After you have loaded it the third time, there will be lot of hot ashes and you can let them build up and continue the seasoning process automatically.
Once these steps are done, you can leave the smoker at the 275°F until the whole 3 hours you had set earlier on your time is up.
How to maintain your electric smoker?
Once the electric smoker has been seasoned, you don’t really have to scrub the inside to clean it. So as to remove any loose ashes around, you might want to wipe it down gently every once in a while. When doing this, you need to make sure that the coating of black smoke is not removed.
You can do these following steps if your electric smoker has a viewing window in the door:
- Dampen some paper towels and then make them into small balls.
- While the smoker is still warm but not hot, you can dab the paper towels into the ashes on the different surfaces.
- Then just dampen some spare paper towels you might have and clean the viewing window.
- Once all the ash residue have been cleaned, you can dry off the window with dry paper towels.
How to choose a best electric smoker?
Choosing the best smoker can be difficult if you’re a newbie. Who doesn’t like a delicious BBQ or the aroma of smoked beef? You may have wanted to try smoking but since there are so many smoker brands out there, it can be a pain to find one. Nowadays people are more into buying the modern electric smokers since it has less hassle and it is cost effective on the long term. Since it does not use charcoal or wood, the electric smoker can offer a plethora of benefits. However since there are so many electric smokers out there and all advertising how good they are you can pretty much be confused and you won’t want to spend or invest a lot in a low quality smoker. So let’s see by what criteria you can evaluate the smoker of your preference.
The best way to make someone feel good is to serve them good food. However if you don’t have a lot of good food or variety then it can be a problem. Some of the best-selling electric smokers out there are the biggest ones (medium, not extra-large) since frankly speaking, the smaller ones are not worth it except in the event that you live alone. Buying a large one has some drawbacks but the smaller ones has drawbacks too. As you may have guessed, the smaller ones won’t be able to fit a lot of food while the large one will result in you smoking a lot of raw food. So if you plan on buying an electric smoker, you better count the number of things you can cook in it or the number of people you’ll be serving. As a whole you need to know how much food can be cooked in the smoker simultaneously and at the best temperatures.
The use of traditional wood to fire up a smoker is almost extinct. Electric smokers need only a little chips of food to generate the same amount of smoke the traditional one does. While deciding on the model of electric smoker you want, make sure to check the type of fuel it uses. Do not buy the one that uses too much charcoals or wood since those will make you incur extra costs.
RACKS AND TRAYS
Some electric smokers have hollow trays while some other have grill like trays. If your smoker is one with an open top grill then most of the time your meat or seasoning will have poured down through the grills and after some time you’ll realize your smoke is gone. It probably will be to your preference but remember to check the type of trays or racks your electric smoker offers before buying.
Make sure you check all the electronics that is integrated in your electric smoker before making a purchase decision. You need one that will make good food within a short span of time. So as you may have guessed, before making a buying decision, you’ll need to do some research or ask around to get those info. Sometimes you’ll get them online or may ask the salesman directly.
For example the best electric smokers have thermostats while the not so good quality uses Rheostats. The Thermostat will provide more accurate readings than the Rheostats.
SAVING MONEY AND TIME
The advice is to save about 50% – 60% of the budget you made for the electric smoker. While a lot of buyers will waste a lot of time going from store to store, the simplest way is just to order your desired smoker online. In doing so, you can already get all the feedback about it as well most of the available information. It is also beneficial to buy it online since you can compare most prices easily.
Important Tips in Using an Electric Smoker
Using the Right Wood
It is a very bad idea to use scrap wood since the latter can produce harmful gases which will harm you as well as your family. To get the best results, it is better to use hardwood such as mesquite and hickory. These are already bagged and are perfect for smoking. However don’t forget to soak them in water before using them. This will keep them at your desired temperature and keep it from flaming up. It will also last longer and produce much more smoke.
Preheat the Smoker
This is the most common mistake that almost every newbie makes. If you want to cook your meat then make sure to set it to the desired temperature first then leave it to rise and only after it has reached the required level, you can place the meat inside.
One of the best ways of ensuring this is to keep an eye on the thermostat or thermometer. You need to keep in your mind that the smoke need to have a bluish color and not the white one.
It is important that you be calm and be patient since some recipes will take as much as 6 hours while the lesser ones will take around 2 hours. If you don’t have patience, you’ll ruin the food. So you better respect the cooking time and temperatures. A probe is also a necessity so as to check the accurate temperatures of the food.
This is very important when you are preparing a lot of types of food simultaneously since all of them won’t be ready at the same time. You won’t want your friend to eat either half cooked meat or even overcooked one since they can be pretty bad for their health. So follow the rules and guidelines and you’ll be good.
Now that you have read all the reviews of the different electric smokers as well as seen the tips and advice on how to use and season an electric smoker, you are pretty much ready to buy one. Make sure to follow the advice but ultimately your choice will boil down to your tastes and preferences.