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Introduction to the Electric Smokers
An electric smoker is a way for users to smoke meat by cooking it at low temperatures for long periods of time. The meat doesn’t spoil and tons of flavor is added without the headache or constant activity level that is required of other types of smokers. They are a set and forget form of cooking that offers you a whole different taste of your favorite barbecued foods.
There are two basic kinds of electric smokers on the market, the vertical, water electric smoker and the electric cabinet smoker that looks a lot like a refrigerator. If you plan on smoking meat year round you will want to opt for the cabinet smoker because the vertical water smoker doesn’t maintain their core temperature in cold weather.
There are many different models and styles of electric smokers on the market. If you want to try your own hand at this delicious way to prepare a myriad of different meats and other foods you will want to learn about the points and factors involved in choosing the right one for your specific needs.
We looked at the most popular electric smokers available and considered each in the areas of performance, ease of use, size, brand reliability and additional features and based on those findings selected these three top rated electric smokers. Any one of them is perfect for smoking many different meats and foods in a convenient and hassle-less way.
Top Ranked Electric Smokers
Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Black Electric Digital Smoker
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Masterbuilt is known for two standards when it comes to cooking products: quality and innovation. The powder coated, steel Electric Smokehouse is a great example of those standards.
It comes with four smoking racks that provide plenty of room for all kinds of delicious foods including turkey, sausage, chicken, ham, pork, fish, jerky, vegetables and much more. The thermostat ranges from 100 degrees to 275 degrees so users get a perfect temperature when smoking foods every time.
The push button digital control panel is just one of the many features this excellent electric smoker possesses. Additional features include a 0-24 hour digital timer with auto shut off so foods are not overcooked, a side-loading wood tray, a removable water pan, an adjustable air damper that can be used to intensify the smoke levels and much more. The unit is 100% insulated to provide energy efficient cooking in the 730 square inches of combined cooking surfaces. You will have plenty of room to smoke enough food for extra-large crowd on holidays, special occasions and reunions. The bottom of the smoker features a removable drip tray that catches the drippings that can be used for gravies and sauces. Thanks to this convenient drip tray, clean up is a breeze as well.
Char-Broil Standard Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch
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If you are looking for an electric smoker that has the room for plenty of food for large groups, you’ll love the Char-Broil Digital Electric Smoker.
This electric smoker provides the outdoor cooking enthusiast complete control over their smoked food via the air dampers, fire access doors, and 4 smoking racks that give 725 square inches of cooking space that is over three different cooking grates.
The double-wall construction is insulated and makes the smoker 10 times more efficient with the wood chips that are used to smoke the food inside.
Your food will be safe with the auto shut off that turns the smoker off when the food is done. The warming feature keeps your delicious food warm until it’s been removed and ready for serving.
The latch locks, creating a tight smoke seal that keeps all the smoke and flavors inside where it does the most good. Using the removable temperature gauge, users can control the heat that is used to cook the food by monitoring it with the easy to see, blue LED display. This electric smoker has wheels and an integrated handle which makes it easy to move. The grease tray below makes clean up super simple.
Smoke Hollow 30162E Electric Smoker, Black
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The Smoke Hollow Electric Smoker comes with a fully adjustable heating element and three chrome plated cooking grids that can be set to different adjustment levels.
The porcelain coated steel water pan is perfect for adding flavors and water to the food. The double wall construction keeps the heat inside where it does the best good.
This convenient and easy to use unit is very much like using an oven. All you need to do is add your favorite wood chips and you’ll have delicious, smoked food that will please your family and friends.
Two of the cooking grids are adjustable and one is fixed for your convenience. The painted wood chip box has a lid and is able to withstand super high temperatures.
If you’re looking for a great new way to prepare your favorite barbecue foods, you will want to give this electric smoker a try. Chances are you’ll have a brand new way to prepare all kinds of foods in a very convenient and stress-free way that produces excellent tasting food as well.
Top Rated Electric Smokers Summary
Electric smokers are a great way to prepare all kinds of food in a delicious way without a lot of headache. The smokers are designed to cook food in a slow manner, using different types of wood chips to create a smoke filled environment. The temperature is set on a low setting and the food is cooked over the course of several hours.
All three of the top choices we featured above are perfect for the food smoking enthusiast, regardless of their skill level. It is not hard to learn how to use an electric smoker. The features each model has are very handy when it comes to cooking, such as the large cooking capacity of the Masterbuilt, to the 4 cooking grates and fire access doors of the Char-Broil. Any one of these smokers is sure to please and will give summer barbecue a whole new feel and taste.
Electric Smoker Buyers Guide
What is Electric Smoker?
There are both pros and cons to purchasing an electric smoker, just like with any purchase that is made. If you love to grill out and try new things, an electric smoker is right up your alley. It is a terrific way to prepare foods in a different and delicious way that you just may become addicted to. Below we have outlined both the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing an electric smoker.
Electric Smoker Advantages
An electric smoker is a cooker that you can set and then not have to fuss with it much at all until the food is done. Once you learn how to use one, you will see the ease in which you can create all kinds of delicious foods without having to stand over the grill or stove. We have listed many of the advantages that you will have if you purchase an electric smoker.
- Instant on with no waiting – There is a heating element that is powered that comes on, ready to go as soon as the flip is switched. Once you flip it on, add the wood chips and you’re all set to start cooking.
- Easy heat and smoke managing – once the smoker reaches a certain temperature that has been programmed, smoke is produced. Managing the heat and smoke with an electric smoker is very easy for most models.
- Easy Maintenance – Take care of your electric smoker by not leaving it outside in the elements, and by keeping it clean by wiping it down inside and out and you’re done. Maintenance on electric smokers is very easy.
- Great for homes where outdoor space is limited – if you’re not allowed to use live grills or smokers, electric models are the perfect alternative to still get that great smoker taste. Just make sure that your patio is well-ventilated.
- Great All Year Round – If you purchase an electric smoker to use all year round, make sure to get the cabinet variety that looks like a little refrigerator. Smoke the food within fully closed areas that are protected against wind and cold weather, therefore they can be used all season long even in the wintertime because the electric smoker keeps its core temperature high. Do not use the smoker in the rain, but using it on a back deck or porch if it is not getting wet is fine.
Electric Smoker Disadvantages
There are a few disadvantages to using an electric smoker. It is important to be aware of these things so you know what is potentially possible. There are not that many disadvantages and they certainly don’t outweigh the advantages. Most can be compensated for.
- Limited cooking space – Electric smokers have limited cooking space, but there are several that have as much as 730 square inches of cooking space which can provide food for a large family gathering or some other function. You may not be able to have as much space as a regular grill, but it is worth it to make adjustments where necessary to feed as many as possible.
- Electronic failure is possible – Due to the nature of electronics, heating elements and rods as well as digital controls can go bad over time. Most of the electronic problems that can occur can be fixed if they go wrong but there is that possibility that they could develop problems over time.
- Not always adequate for large pieces of meat – If you want to cook ribs, brisket, pork or some other large piece of meat, you will want to look for units that have the heat and room to cook these larger pieces which may mean you need to spend more for the smoker you choose to get.
Creating Smoke in the Electric Smoker
Most of the time, you will only need a little bit of wood chips to get the amount of smoke you are looking for. Many electric smoker models will have easy loading trays or boxes that allow you to add chips even when the smoker is hot. Being able to add chips in this way is a very big plus.
Regulating your smoke profile is usually going to be up to personal preference. Some people like there to be a lot of smoke inside the smoker while it is cooking the meat. Others want just a little bit. The beauty of electric smokers is that you can much more easily regular this smoke and get the desired amount with relatively little effort.
Smokers usually have air vents that are adjustable, that can help increase or decrease the amount of smoke. If you love super smoky tasting meat, be sure to keep the vents closed and add more chips.
If you educate yourself on the features of electric smokers, you will have an easier time with sorting through all of the choices available to find the one that will fit your cooking needs the best. Electric smokers provide another way to cook meat and other food in a special and delicious way.
If you want to make sure that you get your money’s worth on a good quality electric smoker, do your homework and learn what you need to look for and look at customer reviews as well to see how the smoker is performing in real life applications. Even if you have never used an electric smoker, they are not difficult to learn how to use and the delicious foods that you will cook will impress your family and friends