Enlightening Meat Smoking Tips, Techniques and Information
Here you'll find meat smoking tips, step-by-step tutorials, and general information about the world of smoker cooking. Explore the following articles and you just might find that nugget of wisdom that will take your meat smoking to the next level.
A Traeger Cooked Pork Shoulder
Meat Smoking Tips for Temperature and Smoking Time, Which Have a Close-Knit Relationship
Masterbuilt Timer Display
When you're cooking meat in your smoker, smoker temperature and smoking time are inversely proportional, meaning when one increases, the other decreases. Cook at a higher temperature and smoking time is shorter. At a lower smoker temperature, the time might seem to drag on forever!
The following articles give some insight into the time-temperature relationship, and helpful tips on finding the optimal cooking temperatures for a variety of meats.
Smoking Times For Meats
A smoked pork loin is a beautiful thing, but just how much time will it have to spend in the smoker?
The amount of time that a whole turkey breast stays in the smoker depends on the temperature of the smoker.
More Smoking Time Information
Boston Butt Smoking Time
How Long to Smoke Sausage
Attaining a Safe Smoked-Meat Internal Temperature
More Info Regarding Temperatures of Meats
The Perfect Turkey Done Temperature
USDA Revised Pork Done Temperature
Brining Information For Meats, Poultry and Fish
Sure, it takes a little longer to brine meats before putting them in the smoker, but if you plan ahead it's not that big of a deal. And the final results make brining well worth the time and effort.
More About Brining Meats For The Smoker
Chicken Brining Tips
Making Chicken Brine
How to Make Turkey Brine
How Long to Brine Salmon
Information About The Fuels Used In Smokers
There are several heat sources that can be used for smoking foods. Wood is the original fuel source, and to purists it represents the best source of heat and flavor. But charcoal, propane gas, grilling pellets and electricity all have their place, and each has their merits.
Efficient Meat Smoker Operation
All types of smokers come with basic instructions, but each also have their own quirks and eccentricities. Learning how to use a smoker takes more than just reading the user manual.
The Little Chief smoker is a great for salmon, but doesn't get hot enough to smoke beef, pork and poultry to completion.
Cheap and easy, this little smoke generator project can be completed in minutes. It's just the thing for cold smoking cheese.
More Meat Smoker Tips
Overview of Meat Smoker Types
How to Use a Vertical Smoker
Gas Grill Smoking Tips
Controlling a Pitsmoker Fire
The Electric Smoker
The Care and Maintenance of Meat Smokers
For all the joy you get from your meat smokers, they deserve to get a little lovin' back. Take some time every week or two to do an inspection of your beloved meat-transformation-unit. Cleaning, repairs and modifications go a long way in improving the quality of your smoked foods.
Dirty grill grates are the bane of civilized man. Man, don't place clean meat on a grungy grill grate. Clean it up for primo smoked food flavors.
Meat Smoker Problems and Projects
Maybe your smoker isn't putting out smoke the way you expect it to, or you haven't figured out an easy way to put the wood chips into your electric smoker. You'll find solutions to these problems and more in this section.
For those with the skills and equipment, building their own pitsmoker is a fascinating project. But how big should the firebox be in relation to smoke chamber size?
More On Meat Smoker Problems, Projects and Information
Royal Oak Electric Smoker
My Masterbuilt Smoker's Not Smoking
Sauce and Marinade Information
Marinades and sauces enhance the flavor of your smoked meats. A good marinade will add flavor to the exterior, but doesn't absorb deeply into the meat fibers as some would have you believe.
Barbecue sauces can be brushed on during cooking to add flavor, or used in the typical fashion to flavor meats at the table.
Seasonings For Smoked Foods
Add flavor to foods with the best quality spices, herbs, sweeteners and salts. Consider the balance of the sweet, tart, salty and bitter components of your dry rubs. There's much more to seasoning foods than just salt and pepper.
Without salt, foods would be pretty darned boring. Of the many culinary salts, most are suitable for one or more of the processes you'll encounter when smoking meats.
Many grocery stores have discontinued offering Tender Quick Meat Curing Mix due to reduced demand. Find out where to get this hard-to-find product, whether online or locally.
User Manuals For Your Smoker and Grill
Instructional manuals that are packaged with most items end up missing, gone to the same place missing socks end up when they disappear from the clothes dryer. Hopefully, these digital meat smoker and grill user manuals will be more difficult to misplace.
There's nothing quite as frustrating as trying to use a new piece of equipment without having the instruction manual in hand. This source of some of the most common grill and smoker manuals might relieve some of that frustration.
Bradley smokers operate in a unique fashion compared to other types of meat smokers. If you've lost the manual to your Bradley, this should get you back up and smoking foods in no time. Bradley contact information is included.
Info About Smoker Wood Chips and Chunks
It's what smoking's all about - wood! Some say that there's little to no difference between species of trees used to produce smoke, and that the main difference is determined by the tree's growing environment. I think that the French would call that the terroir of the smoking wood.
The outer hull that covers the hickory nuts can be used to smoke foods, as well as the hard nut shells surrounding the nut meats. There are several types of hickory, so the flavor profile may be unique to each species. Test to verify.
Magnolia wood is purported to produce a light, florally scented smoke which would be ideal for smoking delicate white-fleshed fish and the white meat of poultry. Try a combination of apple and magnolia woods for balanced flavor.
More About Wood Chips and Chunks
Smoker Woodchips Tips and Info
Suitable Woods For Smoking Foods
Smoke Cooking Accessories and Tools
Containers for brining meats and poultry, and the perfect device for lighting up your charcoal are described in the following articles. Look for more dandy tools and toys to follow in this new section.
Ditch the petroleum-based charcoal lighter fluid and use a charcoal chimney to start those briquettes or lumps. I take my trusty charcoal chimney with me when I'm on the road - here at Ken's Lake, near Moab, Utah. La Sal Mountains in background.
You can brine in food storage bags and plastic storage containers, but those need to be kept in the refrigerator while brining. In an insulated cooler, the brine will stay well within the safe limits of temperature with minimal effort.
Meat Smoking Tips on Smoking and Grilling Beef
There's not much that beats a well smoked hunk of beef, whether it's cooked in the smoker or grilled with a few wood chips added to the mix. Don't get too preoccupied with briskets, as there's a world of other beef cuts that do well in the smoker - tri tip roasts, chuck roasts and rib roasts are all tasty treats when smoked.
Certain cuts of beef do well on the grill, unlike briskets and chuck roasts. Cross rib roasts, top round, chuck eye, tri tips and beef tenderloin are great if not overcooked.
It takes time to do it right, but smoking briskets isn't really all that difficult. Just do it a few times and cooking briskets in the smoker will become second nature.
Beef tri tip roasts can be smoked low and slow, but they are equally tasty when cooked at a higher temperature. Cook them to medium rare, and they'll be perfect!
More About Cooking Cuts of Beef
How to Season a Brisket For Maximum Flavor
Smoking Chuck Roasts That Are Fall-Apart Tender
Smoking a Prime Rib
Trimming a Brisket For The Smoker
About the Whole Beef Brisket
Wrapping Briskets In Foil - aka The Texas Crutch
Tips and Techniques - Smoking The Perfect Chicken
There are lots of ways to go about smoking chicken, whether it be individual parts or the entire bird. From high temperature smoke-roasting to gentle low-and-slow cooking, learn the methods that will transform your recipes into great tasting smoked chicken.
When using a vertical water smoker to smoke leg quarters, the humidity in the smoke chamber will help in keeping the meat moist and tender.
Smoking chickens at 275°F aids in rendering fat from the skin. The skin will be more crispy, and the dripping chicken fat bastes the meat as the chicken cooks.
Additional Chicken Smoking Information
Home Raised Chicken Tough As a Buzzard
Smoking Chicken Wings
Tough Smoked Chicken Skin
Preparing Whole Chicken Breasts For the Smoker
How to Succeed at Smoking Pork Products
Because pork loins and tenderloins are lean, they are best when cooked in a hot smoker, as they tend to dry out less when cooked quickly. Other cuts, including Boston butts and shoulders can also be smoked at higher temperatures, but also do well in smokers in the 225°F range.
A pork picnic shoulder is a big piece o' pork, and requires many hours in the smoker. Learn to trim one up in preparation for seasoning and smoking.
More Tips On Cooking Pork In the Smoker
How to Smoke Pork
Pork Shoulder Picnic
Smoking Pork Shoulder
Smoking Pork Picnics
Smoke + Ribs = Good Eating!
That's a time-proven equation if I ever saw one. From buying the best ribs at the meat counter to knowing when they're ready to take out of the smoker, the following articles will answer your questions.
Beef back ribs and short ribs, pork country styles and baby backs... tips for preparing and smoking them are here for your perusal.
Buy meaty ribs, trim them to specs, marinate and/or season with dry rub and smoke 'em. Sounds easy enough. All the rib prep steps are outlined in this article.
More Lip Smackin' Rib Smokin' Tips and Info
About Pork Spare Ribs
Smoked Ribs Vacuum Sealed
Smoking Ribs When To Apply BBQ Sauce
Salmon Smoking Tips and Information
Salmon is one of the delicious fishes, and for health reasons, should be consumed at least one time per week according to those in the know.
Most smoked salmon recipes take very little time from start to finish, so it's great for weeknight meals. The following tips will guide you in your quest of smoking some great tasting members of the Salmonidae family.
When buying Pacific salmon for the smoker you have several species to choose from. King, coho and sockeye are rich in flavor. Atlantic salmon is also a great choice, though most is farm raised.
For those with patience and desire, making your own cold smoked salmon can be a fun project. It needs to be fully brine-cured and the surface dried to form the pellicle before smoking.
Additional Info About Salmon
How Long to Brine Salmon
Overcooking - The Bane of Sausages
Sausages are one of my favorites from the smoker. Bring them up to the perfect internal temperature and they're juice-packed flavor bombs. However, leave them in the smoker too long and they become dry and tough.
When cooking bratwurst in the smoker, it's imperative that the internal temperature reaches about 5 degrees below the safe-eating target temperature. I like smoking brats in an open-topped foil trough with a little beer poured in, which helps keep them moist.
I receive many questions that start with "How long do I smoke...". But that's not the right question. What should be asked is "What internal temperature does my meat need to reach to be done?" Sausage smoking time depends on link size and smoker temperature.
The Many Facets of Smoking Turkeys
Thanksgiving is a holiday for turkeys. Sure, you might be the type that roasts your bird in the oven. And you might be the adrenaline junkie that risks life and limb deep frying that plump fowl. But for a really great Thanksgiving meal, smoked turkey is where it's at, Man!
Pick up a turkey at the store for starters. Then brine it, season it, and smoke it. But there's more to smoking a turkey than that. Learn the finer points of cooking a turkey in your meat smoker.
Turkey breasts cook much quicker than whole turkeys, and their size is perfect for smaller gatherings. If you have a small-size electric smoker, turkey breasts are a great choice.
Additional Turkey Smoking Information
Charcoal Grilled Turkey
Cooking a Turkey In a Gas Grill
Grilling Turkey In a Weber Kettle
Smoked Turkey Page Links
More Turkey Smoking Tips
Reheating Previously Smoked Turkey
How to Smoke a Turkey
Smoking a Half Turkey
Smoking a Turkey In a Weber Smokey Mountain
Smoking Turkeys With a Water Pan
Turkey Smoking Tips
Food Safety Information
Keep a Smoking Record With This Recipe Log
Smoker Cooking Secrets to Know and Share!
For more meat smoking tips and techniques, come back often and check for new additions. If you have a question about something and would like it included here,