If you are a big fan of smoked food, then it’s high time you learn how to use a vertical propane smoker. We all know nothing compares to the mouth-watering taste of smoked food. However, smoked food is time-consuming to prepare as such, it is quite discouraging. Many people prefer using a charcoal smoker because of the unique real smoke flavor it adds to food. But the downside of using a charcoal smoker is that it requires so much attention. You’d have to frequently check a charcoal smoker to add more charcoal when it starts to burn out. And because smoking food takes hours, it means you’d have to monitor a charcoal smoker for hours constantly. To avoid this stress of regularly checking to ensure the fire is still up in a charcoal smoker, you can use a propane smoker.
Types of Propane Smokers
Common amongst different manufacturers, two main types of smokers make use of propane gas:
1. Portable Propane Smoker
Portable gas smokers, as the name implies, are portable. These types of grills are perfect for those seeking a smoker they can easily carry along with them. Portable smokers are usually budget-friendly and suitable for a small gathering. The small cooking chamber is what makes them portable.
2. Cabinet-style Propane Smoker
Cabinet-style propane smokers are also known as vertical smokers. This type of smoker is much bigger than portable smokers. Cabinet-style smokers are called vertical propane smokers because they look like a cabinet. They feature a door, cooking chamber, grilling racks, and every other thing on a smoker.
Why Use a Vertical Gas Smoker?
Vertical propane smokers are a great option for smoking to opt-in because they offer much better-smoked food. A vertical gas smoker is designed so that its burners are at the bottom of the smoker. As such, you can place your food at a fairly safe distance from the heat source. In summary, a vertical gas smoker creates a better heating environment to give your food that perfect slow cooking option. Moreover, the rack level is adjustable, so you can decide the perfect distance you want to place your food from the heating source.
Similarly, since it is a gas smoker, you don’t have to worry about the temperature’s inconsistencies. Unlike charcoal smokers that are more difficult to control the temperature, you don’t have such worry when using a propane gas smoker. Propane smokers are recommended for people who don’t want to go through the hassle of charcoal smokers. Undoubtedly, charcoal smokers are much more difficult to ignite, regulate, and maintain temperature. Also, propane is a clean-burning flame; thus, it eliminates any form of carcinogenic elements common with charcoal smokers. There are so many reasons why you should use a propane gas grill, but the summary of it all is the convenience they offer you.
The Advantages of a Vertical Propane Smoker
Below are some of the advantages of using propane smokers.
- Propane smokers are much less expensive to purchase than any other type of smoker. On average, a propane smoker costs about $250 or less. Although for a more sturdy, durable, and better smoking capacity propane smoker, you may spend up to $500.
- Propane smokers are more portable to move in and out of the house. Due to their reliance on propane tanks to function, you can easily use them at the campsite or fishing camps. You can choose to use a small canister of propane like a 1 pound propane canister, or a much bigger one depending on your preference.
- Propane smokers are easy to use. All you have to do is plug in the propane tank to the smoker, and you are good to start smoking. Most propane smokers feature a push and twist ignition knob you can use to start the smoker easily.
- Propane smokers are easy to maintain. Their porcelain-enamel coating or stainless steel interior makes it super easy to clean up after use. Moreover, a propane smoker is a perfect flame smoker as it does not make a mess.
How to Use a Vertical Propane Smoker – Step by Step Guide
Follow the step by step guide below to learn how to use a propane smoker.
Step 1: Clean Your Smoker:
Before you smoke anything on your smoker, it is always a good habit to first clean up the smoker. If your smoker is dirty, it may affect your food’s taste at the end of the day. So, use a piece of paper towel to clean out the smoker.
Step 2: Preheat the Smoker:
It would be best if you preheat your smoker to kill any germs which can cause food poisoning. Plugin the propane tank, then push and twist the knob to ignite the smoker. Preheat your smoker for 10-15 minutes at 100-150 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 3: Prepare Your Meat:
As the smoker preheats, prepare your meat by cutting it into the right size. Trim off any fat on the meat. Season the meat with a dry rub or spice it with any marinade recipe of your choice. You can wrap the meat in aluminum foil to lock in the meat’s juice as you smoke, or you can smoke it dry.
Step 4: Add Some Flavored Wood Chips:
Allow your meat to rest, so it absorbs the spice deep into the tissue. While you wait, soak the flavored wood of your choice for about 30 in water. Place the wood chips in the wood chip box in your smoker. If your smoker does not have a wood chip box, you can place the wood chip in a tray. You could also wrap it in aluminum foil and puncture holes in it and then place it close to the smoker’s burners.
Step 5: Adjust Temperature and Airflow:
Before you place the meat into the smoker, adjust the temperature to about 225-250 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, you should adjust the airflow with the vent and chimney. Open the chimney and vent halfway to allow good air circulation for the bad smoker to go out.
Step 6: Place Meat in the Smoker and Check Doneness:
Place the meat on the smoker’s grate above the water bowl. The water bowl is to ensure your meat does not become too dried up and tough to chew. Depending on the gas smoker recipe you are using, but grill until you are satisfied with the readiness. Do not open the smoker door too regularly. You should check the meat’s readiness between 1 ½ hour to 2 hours after you close the door. Check the temperature of your meat regularly with a probe thermometer. Do not depend too much on the inbuilt thermometer, as even the best vertical smoker may not record the actual temperature of the meat itself.
Now that you know how to use a vertical propane smoker pat yourself on the back to wrap things up. But take heed to use the right wood chip flavor that matches the meat you want to smoke. Always preheat your smoker before using it. And remember to always stay safe by closing the gas tank when your food is ready and cleaning the smoker when it is cool. Enjoy the richness of cooking your food on the best vertical propane smoker today.