9 Electric Smoker Tips and Tricks that You Need to Know
Have you purchased an electric smoker or heard about its convenient features and now contemplating over buying one? In any case, we have prepared a list of best tips and tricks to help you master over the electric smoker.
9 Electric Smoker Tips and Tricks
1. Season Your Smoker before First Using
If you are just done with unpacking and feel like cooking right away, you need to take a pause and consider seasoning your smoker, at first. Seasoning is simply firing up a smoker without food. It holds following advantages.
- First, the advantage of seasoning is that it removes any residue, such as oil and dust, which may have been leftover from the manufacturing process.
- Second, as a result of that burning, smoke leaves a fine layer of coating on everything inside which not only helps cure and seal the inside of your smoker but also adds extra smoky flavor in your meat.
To make sure there is no residue left, one additional step is to wipe the smoker down with the sponge, before seasoning. However, be cautious for scratching the surface.
2. Don't overdo it with the Smoker
You must have read that cliché: the excess of everything is bad. And it stands equally true when it comes to smoking food.
Here, the trick to learn is that practice will make you discover your sweet spot. Meanwhile, you shall go gentle and easy with the smoke. One tray of pellets or chips is enough to savor smoky meat and gradually you can enhance the smoky flavor until you reach your desired saturation.
3. Get Rid of the Chip Trays
Smoking meat is a rough ride anyway, so the aim should be to cut the corners wherever possible. This is one such opportunity for you to make it a smooth sailing. Chip trays are required to refill several times during the cooking session and still does not guarantee blended smoke.
Therefore, it is a good idea to trade away chip trays with a small tube or maze which facilitates thin and blue smoke: A-Maze-N AMNPS Maze Pellet Smoker.
A-Maze-N AMNPS Maze Pellet Smoker is good for both hot as well as cold smoking and gives clean smoke. It is made up of stainless steel which makes it durable and rust-free. You can use it in a smoker or grill and no drilling of holes is required. It is comfortable to use and easy to clean.
4. Learn How to Monitor the Temperature
Temperature is the key to smoking meat. The temperature inside the electric smoker is liable to swing up or below by almost 20°F than the desired one. You shall work out to monitor and control these fluctuations.
When you set a certain temperature in your electric smoker, it will keep rising for a while even after it reaches the target. This goes against you. For example, you set 220°F for the session, the temperature will rise until it hits that point. Then sensors will pick the signal and turn off the heating element.
However, the temperature will keep rising because of residual heat and a lag in timing. Eventually, the temperature will start dropping and comes below the targeted temperature until the effect of the element kicks in.
Here, the trick is to set the temperature, initially, a slight below than the required figure; say 220°F. Now observe the temperature and once the internal temperature catches your set temperature i.e. 210°F and likely to climb above, reset the temperature to 220°F on the controller.
By applying this method, you will be able to reduce the temperature swing.
5. Control Your Vent Position
It might be intriguing to find a right vent position when using a charcoal smoker but not when using an electric smoker. The rule of thumb is to place the vent fully exposed to the open. It helps in avoiding an extra build-up of creosote on your meat.
Creosote is a compound of smoke which is responsible for the scent and flavor of smoked meat. However, it is only good in a small proportion and more than that is likely to ruin the flavor.
Generally, you shall only close your vent when you are finished doing cooking or aim to raise the temperature inside.
6. Wrap Your Racks with Foil
It is more of a housekeeping trick than merely smoker related. The argument is anything which can reduce your work shall be welcomed.
Wrapping your racks with foil will keep your racks clean. You need to refresh the foil every time before turning on the smoker for cooking.
The net result of keeping wracks will ultimately translate into better taste. Apart from it, the leftovers on the grill may burn again and blend up with the smoke and may drain your efforts away. This is precisely you would never wish to happen.
7. Regular Cleaning
This needs to be reiterated as regular cleaning goes in your best interest. Clean smoker means there would not be any leftovers from the previous cooking to disturb the proportions of ingredients you set for your cooking. In addition to it, good hygiene is the understood rule for the cooking, bet it smoked meat or any regular item for the dinner.
Ideally, you need to follow the manufacturer's instructions. You shall scrap the smoker with a grill brush or wipe down with a grill cleaner. Once every 3 to 5 uses, do a thorough cleaning of your smoker depending upon what is smoked and for how long.
8. Leave Your Wood Chips Dry
If you believe in wetting your chips before smoking you are misled by the same phenomena. The extra clouds you observe by burning soaked wood is merely steam and not thick smoke.
Wet chips are likely to last longer than dry ones, but they are good for nothing and won't leave any positive effects on your smoke session.
9. Try Cold Smoking with Attachment
In cold smoking, the trick is to expose the food below than 90°F to get the best out of it. It is most likely that your cooker has the option already or you may couple in pellet smoking devices such as the A-Maze-N Pellet products.
A-Maze-N AMNPS Maze Pellet have numerous advantages. They are made up of stainless steel to prevent corrosion which extends its longevity and makes it conveniently transportable. You are likely to get the full-bodied smoke for up to 12 hours depending on what chips or pellet you are using.
One more tip here is, when you are setting up chips to smoke, let it flame up initially. To get good smoke, wait until you are getting thin, blue flame and then you may place your food in the smoker.
Smoking meat with an electric smoker is a smooth drive. And by employing these tips and tricks, you will be able to have more fun during the process and will get away with perfectly cooked food.