How to Use a Vertical Smoker


Barbecuing differs significantly from smoking. When grilling, eating at high temperatures is usually cooked over 400 ° F and usually faster. On the other hand, smoking requires little heat and cooking food takes longer. The meat is removed relatively far from the heat source. Temperatures only range between 200 and 275 ° F. Larger pieces of meat usually take one and a half hours to cook, depending on the temperature, the type of meat cooked and the type of smoker used.


vertical smoker

A vertical smoker is a smoker’s room where both the heat source and the smoke source are directly below the cooking area. The cooking area has several shelves where the meat was kept while cooking. Food in the chamber is cooked faster due to the location of the heat source.

Recipes for grilling can now be easily accessed online or through traditional cookbooks. However, these do not often tell us how to grill or use the right barbecue area. We will guide you through the use of your grills and hopefully pave the way to a perfectly cooked meal that you have always dreamed of. Today we guide you through dealing with a vertical smoker. If you are a smoker for the first time, be sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions.


Charcoal / hardwood smokers are considered as an authentic type of vertical smoker. The smoke comes directly from the combustion fuel and does not require any special connections. These smokers are safe to use wherever they want to go.


● Prepare the heating coal.

You need to heat the charcoal before putting it in the smoker. We recommend using a carbon cylinder or a coal chimney that you can easily purchase in your store or online. However, if you prefer not to invest, you must use your skills and wit to properly heat the charcoal. Let it rest for about 15 minutes.

● Add the charcoal to the smoker.

Make a pile of unlit charcoal on one side of the smoker. Slowly pour the hot charcoal over the unlit charcoal. It is important that you lay the charcoal on one side and place the meat on the other side of the smoker.

● Increase the smoke with woodchips or chunks.

Woodchips and woodchoppers are used to promote the taste of cooked meat. Oak, apple, cherry and hickory chips are often the best choice of wood when smoking.

● Fill the pan with ¾ full cold water and allow to sit in the center of the smoker.

Smokers usually have a water pan or you can use a foil baking pan if there is a water pan now. The cold water compensates for the higher temperatures of the grill. This helps to cook meat and vegetables evenly.

● Fill the grill with meat.

Make sure you install the smaller objects and vegetables above and the large pieces below.

● Put on the lid of the smoker

The vents must be on the meat.

Gas smokers use propane or, of course, as fuel, which also means they use living flames. The flames warm a tray of wood chips to give off smoke. You need to permanently build up a propane tank or natural gas connection. These types of vertical smoking models are portable, but bulkier than carbon models.


● Fill the water pan with either water, cider or beer

Depending on your choice

● Ignite the burner.

First, however, you must connect the propane or natural gas outlet to the smoker and open the valve. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions to light the burner. If the burner does not light up immediately, close the valve. You must clean the gas before trying again.

● After making the flame, set it to the desired temperature.

The ideal temperature is 225 to 250 degrees for slow cooking. Some models are calibrated to low, medium and high. Check the smoker’s instructions to find the right temperature that meets your cooking needs.

● Preheat the smoker

It takes at least 10-15 minutes to preheat the smoker or until the temperature for cooking is sufficient. You have to adjust the ventilation openings as often as you like.

● Bring wood chunks or chips into the pan or tray located above the burner.

Continue preheating until the smoke comes out of the chimney or flaps.

● Distribute and arrange the food in the chamber.

● Keep the heat in the chamber.

Refill the water in the smoker as often as necessary. Make sure that there is constant heat. Watch out for flames and dangerous gases that may be produced while cooking.

● When you are done cooking, remove the food.

Turn off the flame and disconnect the gas tank from the smoker. Let the smoker cool down. You can clean the smoker afterwards.


Has a heating element similar to that of a stove. This heating element heats wood chips, wood biscuits or sawdust to give off smoke. You can use this type of smoker wherever a power outlet is available because it uses electricity.

● Place your smoker in an area outside and away from flammable objects.

● Fill 2/3 to 3/4 of the water pan with hot water

This helps the smoker to easily bring the temperature to the desired level.

● Plug the smoking cable into the socket.

● Monitor the temperature.

The temperature should be 220 to 240 degrees, but you can set it according to the cooked meat.

● Place the smoker wood on the smoker

● Lightly coat the food grilles with oil

To prevent the food from sticking to the grates.

● Use a meat thermometer to monitor the heat in the meat.

● When the food is ready, take it out of the smoker

● Pull out the smoker’s plug and allow it to cool.


● Always use your smoker outdoors and away from flammable materials to prevent unwanted accidents.

● Regulate your temperature by opening the upper and lower openings.

The upper vent must remain open and regulate the temperature with the lower vent. When the fire dies slowly, open the lower air outlet. If the temperature is too high, close the lower vent. The upper vent can only be closed if the lower vent control has not changed the temperature as desired.

● Keep the temperature in the smoke constant.

The ideal smoking temperature is around 220 ° F

● Only remove the lid when adding water and charcoal to the smoker.

Smoking is a hands-off process and does not need to be reviewed from time to time.

● Always prepare another set of hot coals and add as needed.

Learning to use a vertical smoker is easy. Regardless of the type of smoker you prefer, you should always read the smoker’s manual before using it. Prepare all the things you need in advance and, above all, take care of all safety precautions.


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