How to Use an Electric Smoker

May 30, 2020

My neighbor is starting to get into grilling, and he is interested in smoking BBQ and asked me how to use an electric smoker?

To use an Electric Smoker, start by filling up the built-in wood tray with your favorite flavor of woodchips and set the smoker to the desired temperature and let it preheat. Please fill up the enclosed water cup and place it on the bottom of the smoker. Put the meat into the smoker and allow it to cook until it reaches the temperature you are wanting. You may need to add more wood chips or water to the water cup, depending on how long you smoke.

Delicious BBQ Smoked Meat

Smoked meat is always a favorite, and there are tones of options on how to smoke your favorite meat. Charcoal smokers provide excellent results, but you have to monitor them constantly. On the other hand, electric smokers allow you to spend some time away from your meat and still count on it tasting delicious. If you’ve never used an electric smoker before, not to worry because they are much easier to operate than you might think. Even better, they allow you to get tender, juicy meat in the end, and they are super-efficient as well.

Why Buy an Electric Smoker?

Electric smokers make the smoking process much easier on your part because all you do is season the meat, set the timer and the temperature, and let the smoker itself do the hard work for you. Many electric smokers have clear doors that provide you with a way to view your meat as it cooks, which means you can check on the meat without interrupting the smoking process because the door can remain shut. There are numerous types of electric smokers, with differences that include viewable doors versus solid doors and many different sizes to accommodate everyone’s cooking preferences.

The time it takes to smoke your meat depends a lot on the size of the meat and the smoker itself, and if you’re curious about how to use an electric smoker, it is much easier than it seems.

If you want to learn more about pellet smokers, view our post on How Do Pellet Smokers Work.

Electric Smoker with Door to View your meat

Getting Started

When you first use your electric smoker, you have to “season” it to prepare it for future smoking jobs. To do this, rub down the entire inside of the smoker, including the racks, with standard vegetable oil, then turn it on and run for two to three hours. Afterward, please open the door and let it cool off completely before you use it. Smokers only have to be seasoned the first time you use it and after each use. You should check with the user’s manual to determine if they suggest anything different.
Electric Smoker with Digital Display

Start Smoking the Meat

When you’re ready to start smoking, turn the smoker on and set both your timer and the desired temperature, which should be easy to locate. Many smokers today come with digital displays that make reading the numbers super easy. Fill up the built-in wood tray with the right amount of wood chips, then preheat the smoker to the desired temperature, which is usually 200 to 225 degrees. You may have to wait up to 45 minutes for your smoker to preheat.

You should also make sure you fill-up the enclosed cup with water and place it on the smoker’s bottom. Adding water creates steam inside of the smoker and keeps the meat moist.

Making Sure the Meat Is Ready

Learning how to use an electric smoker is very simple, and the next step is to season your meat. Most people use spices or a marinade that they rub onto the meat. Make sure you massage it in, so the meat soaks up the flavor and produces something yummy in the end. For best results, the meat should be placed directly on the inside racks, close, and then lock the door.

More often than not, your smoker will provide you with information regarding how long to keep the meat inside, so pay close attention to any flyer or chart they provide. Use this as a starting point, and the more you practice, the better you will get with the timing. Many times, smoked meat takes from two to eight hours, depending on the type and weight of the meat you’ve chosen. But if your smoker suggests something different, then that’s what you should go by.

Water and Wood Chips

You can add more water or wood chips while the meat is smoking. If the smoke coming out of your smoker stops, this is likely a sign that you need more wood or more water. Go ahead and check the inside of the smoker to determine which one it is, but otherwise, you should keep the smoker door closed. Each time you open it, this can affect the total smoking time and may cause your meat to take longer to cook.

The best part about buying an electric smoker is the variety of sizes you choose from because they can get as big as 40 inches high and 14 inches deep. So, if you’re cooking for two people or 20, you can easily be accommodated.

If you want to see a full list of Smokers and their specs, view our post on how much does a BBQ Smoker weigh.

Large Electric Smoker

Let the Meat Rest

Let the meat rest for a minimum of 30 minutes, but if you can wait, let it rest an hour or two, depending on the type of meat you’re smoking. It will be hot when you’ve had it in a smoker for a while. Letting it sit for a little while also guarantees that the texture will be just right in the end.

Special Features

Smokers not only work great, but they can vary from basic models to super-fancy models. Some smokers even have Bluetooth capability to control or adjust the timer or the temperature gauge with your tablet or cell phone. Smokers are also so easy to use that you can practically figure out how to use an electric smoker on your own, but of course, it is much easier and faster if you pay attention to the directions that come with your smoker!

Most electric smokers come in primarily black color, but you can find some brands and models available in a beautiful shade of silver. Whatever feature you want in an electric smoker, you can usually find. You can find Electric Smokers in hardware stores, home improvement stores, some grocery and discount stores, and online.

For more information on how to clean your BBQ smoker, view our post on How to clean a BBQ Smoker.

Electric Smoker with Bluetooth

Follow the Instructions

Please pay close attention not to overcook the meat because that can give it a burnt taste or even a tough texture, and no one wants that. Just follow the directions on the chart provided by the company that makes the smoker as a starter, and make small adjustments from there. Electric smokers truly make this process more straightforward than it’s ever been, with you reaping the benefits of cooking this way.

If you want to learn how to use a BBQ Smoker, view our post on how to use a BBQ Smoker.

We hope you found this info helpful, and please follow us to stay up to date on all of our latest posts., Inc.

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