how to use an offset smoker

Using an offset smoker can get tricky. They definitely look scary and if you don’t know how to use an offset smoker, you might end up in a dead-end ocean where you don’t know what to do after a point. Fortunately, it is not as tough as it sounds. It is actually fairly easy if you know how to go about the whole process & that’s why we created this guide for you. Today, we will try to teach you. Another thing if you don’t have the best offset smoker it will be boring and you can’t use all the benefits of smokers 🙂 you can check out our review product Char-Broil American Gourmet Offset Smoker

Steps, How to Use an Offset Smoker as a Beginner.

  •  Seasoning

Once you turn your offset smoker on, the first thing you would want to do is seasoning. Especially, if you are using a new offset smoker or one that has been rarely used then you should not ignore the importance of seasoning. Use either soapy water or a regular cleaner to wipe the whole unit. Take your time so that you can get rid of all the dust and burnt areas.

Once you are done with that, it is time to light a small fire and burn for around half an hour so that the unit gets ready for further use.

  •  Setting Temperature

Now it is time to set your temperature right. The temperature will vary depending on what you are going to cook, and that is why you need a digital temperature measurement tool. You can buy anyone that you like but once you buy them, make sure that you are placing it right beside the cooking chamber so that you know the exact temperature all the time.

Compare this with your oven at home. You would want to know the exact heating temperature, don’t you? This tool will perform that.

  •  Air Intake with Chimney Vent

Now it is time to let air come inside. Did you know that fire actually needs air (oxygen) to survive? Well, now you know. The air intake veins are mostly on the side of your unit but designs may vary depending on which option you went for.

Find your air intake area and let air come in.

It is also time that you open your chimney vent so that the smoke has a space to go out. Make sure that you do this, otherwise, you will end up with a black offset smoker that requires heavy cleaning once again. You would not want to do that for sure.

  •  Light it

Once the setup process is done, it is time to start the fire. You can either use original charcoal, wood or even artificial fire to light up your unit. It is completely up to you. As always, be very careful when you are dealing with fire. You will see ashes flying everywhere and as this is a manual unit, fire flames might grow and die all the time. Therefore, it is definitely not a good idea to take your face very close to the fire itself.

It takes time for the fire to actually start and hit up the whole unit so be patient at this stage. You are almost ready to start cooking.

  •  Flavor Time

This is completely optional. Some people will prefer adding different kinds of flavor to their unit for different occasions. If you want to add flavor in an offset smoker, you will have to do it at this stage with the fire. It is not the food that you add the flavors too. It is the smoke which will have that flavor for you.

Once you are done with this step, it is time to close the firebox so that the cooking chamber is hidden once again.

  •  Wait for The Temperature Rise

Now it is time for you to wait for the temperature to rise up to a certain level. Once again, try to be as patient as you can because it can take quite some time for you need to have your desired temperature. Most people will actually prefer to cook their food in a similar setting like their microwave, however, you can select your own temperature, thanks to the Digital temperature measurement tool that you bought earlier.

  •  Adding Food

Now that you have everything ready, it is time to actually place the food in the cooker. Some people will prefer putting meat directly in the smoker without worrying about the home temperature. They will go for the actual cold meat where some other people will season the meat, garnish it and then go for the cooking.

It totally depends on your cooking skills and on your taste so we will not be worrying about that at this stage.

  •  Maintain Fire

I’m like a cooking stove where you can book for an unlimited period of time, a fire will actually start to die out after a point in this unit. This is why you will have to keep on adding either charcoal or wood to the timber so that the fire stays strong. You need to perform this till the time you are done the cooking. Generally, adding some new wood or charcoal every 30 minutes should do the trick.

  •  Rotate

Many people actually forget the rotation part of their cooking. This is more important than what you realize. If you don’t rotate your meat, you will never be able to test the true taste of a smoking flavored dish. Therefore, don’t forget to turn your mate after every few minutes till they’re done the cooking.

  • Spray

You can actually use an external spray to spray on your meat so that they stay moisturized, however, if you are going to eat it right away then you don’t have to do this step.

You are done.

You should have the ready meat now. Simply enjoy the dish that you cooked as they taste best when they are hot.

Once you are done eating, make sure that you properly clean the unit so that you can use it fine on the next round too.

Store it in a cold place and make sure that the fire is taken care of before you even think about storing it.

There you go.


Let’s Watch a Video Review

How to use an offset smoker under 5 minutes which was published by Keeping It Dutch.

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