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If you enjoy juicy and tender meat which has been cooked slowly for some hours, an offset smoker will be perfect for you. They are cook boxes with a firebox connected to the side and they are considered to be the most traditional type of smoker. In this article, we will be finding out more about them and giving you our top picks.
This smoker works on wood pellets and is made from durable stainless steel which is corrosion-resistant and looks sleek and polished. The great thing about wood pellets is that you can get them in all sorts of flavors so you can choose your smoky flavor. Why not try mesquite or hickory? Cherry and apple are also very flavorsome. You can cook for about 20 hours on 20 pounds of wood pellets which makes it more economical to use a wood pellet grill rather than gas or charcoal.
This smoker is very versatile. As well as smoking, you can bake, roast, grill, braise, and barbecue.
It comes with an automatic electronic ignition and digital temperature control. The smoker can give temperatures between 180F and 450F. There is an LED temperature readout so you can keep an eye on the temperature at any point during the cooking process without having to open the cook box lid. It is reliable and stays within 10 degrees of the set temperature.
There is a large cooking area of 700 square inches. Other benefits include an automated electric feed system that senses when the smoker needs more wood pellets.
ULTIMATE 8-IN-1 WOOD PELLET GRILL & SMOKER - bbq✓bake✓roast✓braise✓smoke✓grill✓sear✓char-grill, you can do everything on here
PELLET GRILL TECHNOLOGY - It’s the best and easiest way to get wood-smoked flavors. Anyone will instantly realize the taste is better than a gas or charcoal grill
MAKES YOU A GOOD CHEF - One button starts up, this pellet grill will maintain the preset temperature within 10 degrees fluctuation and produce the optimal amount of smoke, easy and steady
FOR FAMILIES AND PARTIES - Features 700 sq inches of wide cooking space that allows you to place all at once and cook efficiently, 180° to 450° F Adjustable temperature range gives you great flexibility for different food
LESS PELLET FILLING, MORE SMOKING - The 20 lbs large-capacity pellet hopper offers a longer cooking time, eliminating the need to refill the hopper constantly
You can both grill and smoke on this unit although the temperature just goes up to 400F so it might not be suitable for searing a steak. It works on either lump charcoal or briquettes although it’s a good idea to add a few wood pellets to get that smoky flavor.
The cooking grates are porcelain-coated which means that that they will spread the heat evenly and will retain heat easily. This means that your meat will end up tender and juicy. What more can you ask for?
The unit has an impressive 800 square inches of cooking space. There are 438 square inches in the main cooking chamber, 179 square inches on a warming rack, and 183 square inches in the firebox. You can smoke and grill in both boxes so you would be able to provide enough food for a crowd.
The smoker is easy to clean. Wipe down the grates with warm soapy water and rinse. There is a removable ash pan so that it can be dealt with quickly.
Other benefits include a temperature gauge, a cool-to-the-touch handle, a charcoal access door so that you don’t have to open the main chamber and let heat out, and 2 adjustable dampers. There is a side vent and it has 2 wheels for easy portability.
811 Square Inches: Includes 443 sq. in. porcelain-enameled steel wire cooking grates, 184 sq. in. chrome-plated warming rack and 184 sq. in. offset smoker.
Tasty Smoke Flavors: The offset smoker is firmly attached to grill to ensure good circulation of heat and smoke. Easy to open side door to add charcoal and remove ashes; air vent stokes fire instantly.
Adjustable Pan: 2-level height-adjustable charcoal pan creates better heat control and holds up to 4.4 lbs. of coal.
Temperature Monitor: Lid-mounted thermometer gauge helps check and monitor the cooking temperature and you can cook with great confidence.
Ample Space: Front and side tables offer workspace for seasonings and grilling tools. The bottom shelf provides extra storage space and holds up to only 20 lb. accessories when they are evenly distributed.
This smoker is made from a black powder-coated steel construction so it is durable and built to last. It has porcelain-coated cooking grates that are rust-resistant.
There are 605 square inches of cooking space, 477 square inches in the main chamber, and the rest in the firebox. You could cook a turkey or ribs slow and low in this smoker. It works as a grill as well and there is space for 24 burgers, enough to feed a crowd.
The smoking chamber is composed of 3 parts which help to maintain the temperature you want and stop heat loss. There is a top damper which gives you control over the heat and smoke.
It is easy to clean. Wash down the grates with warm soapy water and then rinse in plain water. There is an ash door in the firebox, so it’s easy to get rid of the ash after cooking.
Other benefits include a lid-mounted temperature gauge, a side table for prepping food, and a bottom shelf to store utensils. Also, it has 2 8″ wheels so it can easily be moved around in your yard or patio.
This smoker will also bake, roast, grill, braise, and barbecue so it is very versatile. It is made from durable and sturdy powder-coated steel. The grill grates are porcelain-coated so they are also tough, non-stick, and easy to clean. All you have to do is wash them in warm soapy water and then rinse with plain water. There is a drip tray, so you won’t have to worry where the surplus juices are going. Cleaning is a breeze.
It is fueled by 100% all-natural wood pellets. Choose the flavor of your choice. There are so many delicious flavors to choose from including cherry, mesquite, and apple. Perhaps mix and match the flavors for a unique taste.
There are 572 square inches of cooking space which will enable you to cook 5 racks of ribs, 4 chickens, or 24 burgers. Not only can you feed your family, but you can host a party with this smoker.
The controls are easy to use. There is a digital pro controller that enables you to set the temperature you want. The temperature will only fluctuate 15F either higher or lower. There are 2 built-in meat probes so you will be able to keep an eye on the temperature of the meat without opening the lid.
The hopper has a capacity of 18 pounds which lasts for around 18 hours before you need to refill it. It has an auger that pulls the pellets into the firepot. In the firepot, there is a hot rod that ignites the pellets.
Τhis is a versatile unit as in addition to smoking, you can barbecue, braise, roast, bake, and grill. It is made from durable stainless steel and comes with a cover which is great for bad weather.
It has an electronic ignition, temperature control, and LED temperature readout. You can set the temperature anywhere between 180F and 450F. However, there is a bonus feature. It is searing enabled and you can get the temperature to go as high as 1000F. All you have to do is open the air door and put the temperature control to maximum. You will have perfectly cooked steaks, crunchy on the outside, juicy and tender on the inside, with impressive sear marks. Another bonus is that the temperature stays within 10F of what you have set it at no matter what the weather outside is like, be it hot or cold.
There is an impressively sized cooking space. It is 600 square inches with a 128 square inch warming rack.
The hopper holds 10 pounds of wood pellets which will last you around 10 hours. It has an automatic pellet feeder, so you don’t have to do anything until it’s time to refill the firebox.
It has a waste oil collector which helps to make cleaning easy. Other benefits include rust-proof racks and a folding side table where you can prep food or keep utensils. It has locking caster wheels which makes it easy to move.
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Made from durable stainless steel
600 square inches of cooking space
128 square inch warming rack
One customer complained that there wasn’t enough of a smoky flavor
This smoker is durable and long-lasting as it is made from 2mm/14-Gauge steel. The lid is double-walled so it retains heat well and will not be affected by the outside temperature.
It has 500 square inches of primary cooking space on which you could easily smoke a large piece of meat or even a turkey. In addition, there is a 188 square inch warming rack which is great for smoking sausages. When you aren’t smoking and want to use this as a grill, there are an extra 175 square inches of cooking space inside the smoking chamber.
The cooking grates are made from cast-iron so are strong and durable. They also retain heat well so the temperature will remain steady. There is a V-channel at the back end of the cooking chamber which means that you can baste your meats in their own juices.
Both the charcoal pans and ashtrays are made from stainless steel which means that they are long-lasting. There is also a steel front shelf that has 4 tool hooks. It can be removed if you want to store the smoker indoors during the winter. For those who fancy a drink, there is a handy bottle opener.
Other benefits include 2 large wheels so that it can be moved easily, steel access doors, stainless steel handles which are cool to the touch, and a steel bottom shelf for storing anything you need for the cooking process. The smoker is kept perfectly balanced by integrated leg levelers.
Bring the Smokehouse home - 500 sq. in. of primary cooking space gives you plenty of space to smoke all of your favorites; 188 sq. in. warming rack gives you additional space for smaller items; the offset barrel gives an extra 175 sq. in. of cooking space when not set for smoking
Unrivaled heat retention - heavy-duty cast iron cooking grates offer exceptional heat retention ensuring great sear marks and also feature a V-channel design on the reverse to baste foods in their own juices; these grates are a big upgrade over expanded steel grates found on most smokers
Packed with premium features - this smoker features dual-purpose stainless steel charcoal trays that also help diffuse smoke from the offset chamber; steel front shelf features 4 tool hooks and is removable when storing the grill; integrated bottle opener means you're always ready to enjoy your favorite beverage
Quick & easy clean up - all-stainless steel ash trays are located below the charcoal trays in each barrel and allow you to quickly and neatly dispose of any built up ash, ensuring that your smoker is always performing at its best
Built to Last - with a 5-year warranty on the grill body and a 2-year warranty on the remaining parts and paint, you can be confident that your smoker will be ready for years of cookouts and delicious, savory, smoky BBQ meals with your whole family
A reverse flow smoker is exactly that. Instead of entering the cooking chamber from the side that is next to the cook box, the heat travels under a sealed drip pan to the far end of the smoker and enters that way. It moves through the cooking chamber in the opposite direction. This smoker has 4 baffles that direct the smoke and heat in this direction. However, they can be removed, and the smoker can be used traditionally.
This smoker is made from heavy-gauge steel so it is tough and durable. The cooking grates are also long-lasting as they are porcelain coated.
You can certainly smoke for a crowd with this unit. There is a total of 900 square inches of cooking space, 619 square inches in the cooking chamber, and an extra 281 square inches in the firebox chamber.
The smoker works on charcoal and inside the firebox, you will find a large stainless steel fuel basket. There is a door so you can easily remove the ash as well as stoke the fire.
Other benefits include front and bottom shelves. The front shelf runs the width of the cooking chamber and here you can prep your food and keep utensils. There is plenty of space on the bottom shelf to store extra charcoal. The smoker has large wheels so it can easily be moved around your yard, there is a lid-mounted temperature gauge and a warming area on top of the firebox. The handles are cool-to-the-touch.
This smoker is large at 48” in length so you can certainly have quite a few guests over for dinner. It is versatile as it doesn’t just smoke. It also barbecues and grills.
The unit is sturdy and tough. It is made from rust-resistant cold-rolled steel which will last you a good few years.
There is a side vent with which you can adjust the airflow to get your perfect smoke. Other benefits include 2 shelves for food prep and storage. There is one on the front of the cooking chamber and one on the side. In addition, there is a metal grating below where you can store your charcoal ready for refilling. It has wooden handles that remain cool whatever temperature you have the smoker set at. There is a thermometer on the lid so you can keep an eye on the temperature. The temperature can range from 100F to 1000F. Use around 225F for smoking and high temperatures for grilling and searing steak.
There are 2 wheels on one side of the unit meaning that you can move it around your yard easily.
Unique Design: As a combination of offset smoker grill, BBQ, and portable charcoal grill, the all-in-one bbq grill is your one-stop shop for perfect backyard gatherings. Firebox helps offset the heat and provides a delicious smoked flavor, while the side vent can be used to supply air flow.
Ample Storage Space: The propane grill comes with 1 shelf in the front and the other on the side, as well as a metal grating below provide maximum space for grilling essentials and accessories.
Security Use: The wooden handles remain cool to the touch, preventing you from being burnt. An easy-to-read thermometer of the outdoor griddle grill is connected on the main lid, providing convenience and security for use.
Durable Construction: The sturdy construction of the small grill with angled legs makes the grill tough and stable. The rust-resistant cold-rolled steel will give you years of dependable use for barbecue seasons to come.
Outdoor Smoker Grill Specifications: Overall Dimensions: 48.75" L x 20.75" W x 41" H; BBQ Interior: 24.25" L x 12" W; Firebox Exterior: 24.1" L x 11.8" H; Firebox Interior: 11.75" L x 12" W; Side Shelf: 11.75" L x 10.5" W; Front Shelf: 23.75" L x 8.75" W; Front Shelf to Ground Height: 28.5";
This is a very versatile smoker as it also braises, roasts, bakes, barbecues, and grills. It is made from strong steel construction, so it’s built to last.
It has a large cooking area of 700 square inches on which you would be able to cook 6 racks of ribs, 3 chickens, or 20 burgers. You could easily feed a large group of friends.
The smoker has a built-in thermometer so you can keep an eye on the temperature inside the cooking chamber throughout the cooking process. There is also an LED temperature display and all you have to do is set the temperature you want, and it will keep to it within 10F either way. You can set the temperature between 225F and 450F. The lower temperatures will suit smoking, while higher temperatures are best if you want to grill.
The smoker is supposed to be used with all-natural cooking grade wood pellets. You can have your choice of flavors. Perhaps you like maple or hickory or perhaps a fruity flavor is more your thing, like apple or cherry. The unit has an automated electric feed system which makes using this smoker simple to use.
Other benefits include dampers so you can adjust the airflow, wheels so you can easily move it around your yard, and 3 hooks for hanging your grilling tools. There is also a folding shelf so you can have room to prep your food.
This grill is tough, sturdy, and durable. It is made from heavy gauge powder-coated steel, the auger is cast-iron, the firebox high-refractory steel, and the grill is porcelain coated.
The Razorback works on wood pellets with an automatic auger, so you don’t have to do much except refill the firebox. That won’t be too often as it has an 11-pound hopper which should last you at least 11 hours.
The smoker is versatile as apart from smoking, you can also braise, roast, bake, and grill. The cooking surface is 305 square inches and is capable of cooking 10 burgers at the same time.
It has a digital control panel so you can set the temperature that you want. The smoker keeps the temperature within a +/- 20F range whatever the weather is outside. As well as a thermometer, it comes with a meat probe so you can easily check the internal temperature of your meat.
This smoker is a little different from the ones we have been looking at. They are all barrel smokers, but this one is vertical, and it has masses more room than the others, so if you often cook for a crowd, this is the smoker for you. It has 6 cooking grates with a total area of 1,890 square inches of cooking space. You can adjust the height of the grates and take some out if you want to cook a large piece of meat or a turkey.
It is durable and will withstand all weathers as it is made from rubbed bronze. The charcoal firebox is porcelain enameled.
It is easy to clean as all you have to do is remove the grates and wash them in warm soapy water and then rinse them in plain water. There is a removable ash pan.
Although this smoker is fueled by charcoal, you can add some wood chips to give an extra special smoky taste to your meat. Choose from a wide variety of wood chips out there, like hickory, mesquite, or cherry.
It’s not difficult to get the temperature correct There is a stainless steel temperature gauge with a ‘Smoke Zone’ telling you when the temperature is ideal for smoking. You can also control the temperature by adjusting the steel smokestack’s adjustable flue.
The door seal helps to reduce the chance of smoke escaping and means that the cooking chamber will retain heat.
This is a versatile smoker because as well as smoking it barbecues and grills. It is made from durable steel and has porcelain-coated wire cooking grates.
It is massive so you can certainly hold a party and feed everyone well. There is a total of 1,390 square inches of cooking space. The main chamber has 670 square inches and an extra 355 square inches on a chrome wire swing-away warming rack. In the firebox, there is a total of 365 square inches.
It is easy to control the heat and smoke as there are a few adjustable dampers, a smokestack, and a built-in temperature gauge.
Other benefits include cool-to-the-touch handles to save your hands from the heat of the smoker and a storage rack below the cooking chamber where you can put extra charcoal and utensils. There is a door for you to be able to remove the ash.
Offset smokers are made up of 2 sealed and connected cylinders or boxes, the cook box, and the firebox. The firebox is always smaller than the cook box and is placed lower. In the firebox, you put either charcoal or wood pellets and light it. It will take some time for the smoke to be produced. When it is ready, the rising smoke is pushed from the firebox to the cooking chamber where it cooks the meat. The smoke comes out of the chimney which is on the cook box. You may have to rotate the meat while cooking as the hottest area will be near the firebox. The larger the smoker is, the higher the disparity in temperature will be. A solution is a steel baffle plate that protects the food from direct heat. Instead, the smoke will move around the cook box at a slower rate.
Smokers take some skill to control properly, but it is well worth it when you are presented with perfectly smoked meat. You will have to adjust the air vents to control the temperature and to make sure there is the right amount of smoke in the cooking space. The more open the vents are, the hotter the fire will be and the faster your smoking will be. You don’t want to have it too hot as smoking should be slow and low. You could end up with burnt food if it is too hot.
What to Look for When Buying an Offset Smoker
The first thing you have to consider is what material the smoker is made from. You don’t want a thin metal that won’t retain heat and may even warp if the heat is too high. Look for steel which is at least an inch thick. Cast-iron grates are a good choice as they are durable.
The smoker needs to have sturdy legs so that it doesn’t fall over. Lockable wheels are also a good idea as you may want to move your smoker around your yard. Check the hinges and latches to make sure that they are strong and aren’t going to fall off after a few uses.
Make sure that the smoker comes with a temperature gauge as you will want to keep an eye on the temperature throughout the smoking process without having to remove the lid which lets out smoke and heat.
Check that you can purchase a cover for your smoker. It is better to have it covered during bad weather as it will lengthen the life of the unit. Of course, if you can store your smoker indoors during the winter all the better.
It’s also a good idea to choose a smoker which comes with a warranty as this will give you peace of mind.
Make sure that both the firebox and cook box are the right size. You want to get a smoker that has a large enough firebox so that you are not continually having to fill it. With the cook box, you need to think about how many people you will be cooking for on a regular basis. You don’t want to get one either too small or too big. If you purchase one that is too big, you will waste fuel. Check that the racks are removable as that will allow you to smoke exceptionally large pieces of meat or even a turkey.
The size of your yard is also important. Measure how much space you have for your smoker. You need to add in ventilation space as well.
Removable racks are a good idea for after the cooking process. If they are removable, they are so much easier to clean. Check also that your smoker has a removable ash pan.
Why it’s Better to Spend a Little More and Buy a Quality Offset Smoke
It is better to buy a quality smoker as it will last much longer. If you get a cheaper brand it could easily be made from a thin metal that won’t retain heat. You might still get good results, but you will end up using more fuel. You will also have to keep checking the temperature and with smoking taking a long time, this can get tedious. If you live in a cool climate it will probably take a long time for the cooking chamber to reach temperature.
Cheaper smokers might not be sealed as well as quality smokers. This could lead to the smoke escaping and you having again to use more fuel to reach the correct temperature.
A cheaper smoker may be painted with poor-quality paint meaning that it might flake off easily. You don’t want paint flakes in your food. Also, if the paint flakes off, your smoker will be more prone to rust and it won’t last for a long time.
Pros and Cons of Offset Smokers
You can add more fuel easily without having to open the cooking chamber
They are inexpensive to run
They can cook a lot of food at once
A quality offset smoker can last a lifetime
Smoking takes many hours
Takes a long time to heat the cooking chamber
Takes practice to operate correctly
They are large and heavy to move
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I grill in my offset smoker?
Yes, you can just put coals in the cook box and grill on the grates.
What Can I Cook in an Offset Smoker?
Turkey, pork butt, and ribs cook well in a smoker, but you can also cook sausages to give them a nice smoky flavor. Some smokers can cold smoke things like cheese as well.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading about offset smokers and have perhaps found one to suit you from our choices. You will get a real smoky flavor from using any of them. They might take a little time to get used to as you do may have to adjust the airflow to get the right temperature inside the cooking chamber, but they all have built-in temperature gauges to help you. Most hoppers hold a good amount of fuel, be it charcoal or wood pellets, so you won’t be up and down too much of the time refilling it.
We stand by our top pick of the Z Grills ZPG Wood Pellet Grill and Smoker. It is very versatile because as well as smoking, you can barbecue, braise, grill, roast, and bake. This will give you a wide variety of foods for your mealtimes. You could even bake a pizza in this smoker. It holds 20 pounds of pellets so you can take a rest as a full hopper will last a good 20 hours. Not only does it have electronic ignition which lights the smoker up in a flash, but you can set the temperature to what you want between 180F and 450F and it also displays the real-time temperature on the lid. It has a large cooking area of 700 square inches and is made from durable stainless steel so you can expect to have this smoker for a long time.
We hope that you have a great summer out in your yard smoking all sorts of delicious foods.