Looking for a new smoker? If so, your thoughts should now be turning to which fuel source to choose. Your decision now will make a big impact on how you cook in the years to come. Take a look at our top choices, in order from best to worst.
#1 Pellet Grill
A pellet grill is very versatile and can be used to both grill and smoke. It is also one of the most convenient grills to use, especially on those longer smokes.
With a pellet grill, you simply add your pellets, load up your meat and then let it run. The grill will handle the smoke and keep cooking tips nice and stable. Most of them also come with handy features like Bluetooth.
The pellet grill gives you all of the flavor without all of the trouble. The only downside is the cost of ownership. A good pellet grill will cost around $1000.
#2 Stick Burners
The choice of most professionals will be a stick burner grill. It allows for the most precise application of heat and smoke. The only problem is that they require a lot of tending.
When you cook on a stick burner, you will need to constantly add wood or charcoal to keep the temperature just right. This requires time and skill. It is very easy to let a smoke get out of control, but if you want the best product, this is the smoker for you.
#3 Propane Smokers
A propane smoker offers much of the same convenience of a pellet grill. Having a stable fuel source, it is very easy to maintain a constant temperature. They will also have a smoke box, allowing you to get all of the smoke flavor that you want.
The downside here is that it is very easy to run out of propane during the middle of a smoke. If you choose to go propane, keep an extra tank on hand.
#4 Electric Smokers
Rounding out the list is the electric smoker. It is perhaps the easiest way to grill. Just load the meat and flip a switch. You do not even have to worry about running out of heat sources like pellets or gas. Smoke comes from the use of a small wood box and one filling will generally be good for the entire cook.
The problem with electrics is the smoke line. There will not be one. Electric smokers use very little wood and are typically sealed up tight. The lack of smoke and oxygen prevents a line from forming.