While many grillmasters may be lamenting the arrival of autumn, as it means BBQ season is now all by over, there is a silver lining—the prices for grills (as with many things purchased out of season) are dropping, which means it’s a great time to guy one.
However, if you’re looking for a way to cook food infused with that smoky flavor you can’t resist, you might want to consider getting a home smoker, over a new grill.
There are plenty of great reasons to get a smoker, whether you prefer the smoky flavor it produces, or you want to augment your grilling repertoire by adding a smoker to the mix.
Below is a list of the benefits of having your own smoker.
Obviously, one of the biggest draws of getting your own smoker is the flavor. While a traditional grill is great for your BBQ staples such as the classic hotdogs and hamburgers, they simply can’t produce the smoky flavor that a smoker can.
The reason a smoker is able to produce such a flavor is because it cooks food using hot smoke, rather than the open flame and heated spokes of a grill.
The flavors of a smoker can also be enhanced by the wood you choose to use. Oak is the wood of choice for many pitmasters who know their way around a smoker. However, if you want to play with the flavors you can use other woods such as hickory, mesquite, maple, pecan, apple, and even cherry.
Another thing about smoking meat is it comes out much more tender than a traditional grill. This is mainly due to the fact that when you cook meat using smoke, the smoke breaks down collagen, which is a tissue found in muscle that makes them tense.
However, in order to get this level of tenderness, you have to smoke the meat for longer than you would normally grill it.
Even though you need to smoke meat for longer, you don’t have to constantly fret about the temperature, as most smokers are designed to monitor temperature, so you don’t have to.
While many people assume smokers only use wood, there are actually several different versions of smokers that use different kinds of fuel, including: wood, gas, charcoal, electric and pellet smokers.
Gas smokers are great for beef and high-fat meats, as they operate at a higher temperature which means they burn off more fat on the meat creating a leaner, healthier option. However, gas smokers can be more difficult to manage temperatures, so it’s recommended to use a thermostat when cooking with one.
Wood smokers allow for you to play with flavors, as the wood you choose will have an impact on the flavor. Given that there are so many different types of wood to choose from, this means there is a lot of room to experiment with flavors.
They also manage temperatures better than a gas smoker. However, due to the fact they operate at lower temperatures, wood smokers require more time to cook meat.