The Best Electric Smokers

While grilling is an art, there’s no doubt that smoking elevates the game of outdoor cooking. Smoking your meat creates a mouthwatering masterpiece that is sure to impress your guests. Whether you love smoked turkey or smoked brats, investing in an electric smoker will help you create magic on your dinner table.

The 4 Best Electric Smokers
The Best Electric Smokers

The Best Electric Smokers

Unlike a traditional BBQ made for grilling meat, a smoker is designed for low and slow cooking using smoke and low temperatures in a controlled environment. Smokers add flavour to your meat so your taste buds can dance with joy.

Compared to traditional smoking by burning charcoal, an electric smoker creates less mess and is a great option for beginners. Though they may not create the same flavour depth as a charcoal smoker would, the ability to practice precise temperature control allows you to achieve more consistent and reliable results. Thanks to an adjustable thermostat and temperature gauge, finding the desired temperature and holding those consistent temperatures is uncomplicated.

Electric smokers use a heating element to heat a wood chip tray which smoulders and fills the cooking chamber with smoke. Most electric smokers also have a tray to fill with water to create steam. The addition of a water pan and steam creates a juicy and moist finished product and makes cleanup a breeze.

By adding wood chips of different varieties, you’re able to change the overall flavour of your smoked meat. Typically, fruit tree woods like applewood or cherry will give a sweeter smoky flavour to the smoke chamber. On the other hand, oak wood chips will give that traditional smoke flavour we all know and love.

Below you’ll find our top picks for the best electric smoker brands and the best electric smokers by them so that you can choose your next brand new electric smoker.


Quick Overview


Bradley Smoker Electric Vertical Smoker [Editors Pick]

Bradley Smoker Electric Vertical Smoker
Bradley Smoker Electric Vertical Smoker
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The Bradley Smoker Electric Vertical Smoker has dual heating elements that allow you to individually control smoke and temperature, making this a highly versatile electric smoker suitable for hot smoking, cold smoking, and dehydrating. Conveniently add wood bisquettes to the side hopper and watch as the chip tube system automatically dispenses to give you 9 hours of smoke time.

This excellent electric smoker features a stainless steel interior that helps circulate even heat, while four cooking racks give you plenty of room to cook, plus, they’re dishwasher safe! Complete with a drip pan to catch spills and a basin to catch used wood chips, the cleanup on this electric smoker is painless.

Thanks to the innovative CleanSmoke Technology, you get clean smoke, every time. This technology allows the wood smoking briquettes to be smoked for a precise amount of time and then doused and discarded before they turn to ash. Burning wood to ash gives the smoke a bitter flavour that this technology prevents 100%.

PROS

  • Automatic wood chip dispenser
  • Easy to clean
  • CleanSmoke Technology prevents bitterness

CONS

  • Must use Bradley Bisquettes as fuel source

Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker [Best Overall]

Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker
Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker
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The Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker is a great electric smoker with an insulted, double-wall construction for top-notch heat retention. Complete with a locking seal to give a smoke-tight lock you don’t have to worry about heat fluctuations due to heat loss.

The smoker door is actually a glass door, giving you a window into the cooking space where you can watch all the magic unfold. Inside, you’ll find four cooking racks, completely adjustable and made of heavy-duty stainless steel for durability and rust resistance. There is 725 square inches of cooking space spread across the four adjustable racks with enough room to smoke 8 racks of ribs or 4 perfectly cooked briskets.

Digital controls with a bonus remote control and LED screen make this digital electric smoker super simple to use and easy to monitor and adjust from a distance. Plus, the large capacity smoke box gives you 4-7 hours of smoke time before needing to refill.

PROS

  • Excellent heat retention
  • Viewing window
  • Large cooking space

CONS

  • Does not reach high-temperature range

Masterbuilt Electric Digital Smoker [Best Small Budget]

Masterbuilt Electric Digital Smoker
Masterbuilt Electric Digital Smoker
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The Masterbuilt Electric Smoker (MB20071117) is the best electric smoker for those on a budget, plus it’s super easy to use. Simply plug it in, set the digital control panel, and sit back while the magic happens.

Unlike other cheap smokers, this digital electric smoker comes with all the bells and whistles at a low price point. The digital panel manages the on and off controls, the cooking temperature and has a timer. It also has a special wood chip loading system that lets you add wood chips without opening the door. You won’t have to risk losing smoke by opening the smoker door, saving you time and patience.

This Masterbuilt smoker has a max temperature setting of 275ᵒ F and has enough space to cook either two turkeys, four racks of ribs, or six chickens! Overall, a great bang for your buck and we couldn’t recommend it more.

PROS

  • Budget friendly
  • Digital control panel
  • Closed door chip loading system

CONS

  • Does not reach high temperatures

Traeger Grills Pro Series 34 Electric Wood Pellet Smoker [Best Luxury]

Traeger Grills Pro Series 34 Electric Wood Pellet Smoker
Traeger Grills Pro Series 34 Electric Wood Pellet Smoker
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Once you use the Traeger Grills Pro Electric Wood Pellet Smoker you might never go back to charcoal smoking again. One of the best electric smokers on the market, this unit offers real smoky flavors with a wood-fired taste.

This versatile electric smoker isn’t only a great hot and cold smoker, it can also bake, roast, braise, and BBQ food too. You’ll never need another grill! It’s made of durable steel and the long-lasting coating makes it an attractive grill that is sure to impress. With high-quality, all-terrain wheels, you can move this smoker around hassle-free, plus the unique sidebar gives it an even weight distribution and added stability.

One of the most interesting features that sets it apart from other electric smokers is the Digital Pro Controller. Using advanced grilling logic, this feature maintains a plus/minus 15 degrees Fahrenheit temperature control to guarantee precision grilling every time.

PROS

  • Large cooking capacity
  • Solid build
  • Versatile
  • Maximum temperature control
  • All-terrain wheels

CONS

  • Expensive
  • Large in size

Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker [Best for Beginners]

Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker
Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker
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The Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker is one of the best electric smokers for beginners because it is quite affordable, highly effective, and easy to use. It’s lightweight and with two convenient side handles it’s quite portable as well. It has 548 square inches of cooking area and three adjustable and removable racks so you can rearrange for different sizes of meat.

The grill itself is quite skinny and tall so it doesn’t take up much space and is able to fit in almost any outdoor space. The easy-to-read thermometer on the front door lets you keep an eye on the temperature inside and is fairly accurate. The heating element can reach a temperature anywhere between 100°F and 400°F and you can control it using a dial.

PROS

  • Portable and easy-to-use electric smoker
  • Easy to clean
  • Dial adjusted temperature gauge
  • Affordable

CONS

  • Heavy unit
  • No digital controls

The Verdict


Things to consider when buying an electric smoker

To find the best electric smoker for your needs there are a few factors you must first consider.

Ease of Use

Being comfortable enough to use your electric smoker properly is a must. If you’re just getting started in the smoking world, it might be best to consider a more basic model like the Cuisinart Electric Smoker. You’ll want to look for easy ignition, easy clean up, and temperature range that you’re comfortable with.

Finding an electric smoker that is easy to use will simplify your cooking process, ensuring that you’re able to serve the best-smoked food to your guests. Since you’re in the market for an electric smoker, you’re already heading in the right direction since they are typically easier to use than traditional smokers.

Performance

If you’re already a grill master, or BBQ hero, then performance should be a top priority along with ease of operation. Look for an electric smoker with clear digital controls, a large enough space for wood chips, and an integrated thermostat so that you can keep an eye on the actual range of temperature.

Electric smokers are a great investment for both novice and professional users looking to elevate their BBQ game but you must ensure that the one you choose performs well in the areas that are most important to you.

Wood Chip Tray

One of the best parts about smoking meat is delivering that mouthwatering smokey flavor to a dish. When choosing the right electric smoker for you, pay attention to the wood chip tray. Is there a space to add wood chips? How big is it? These are questions you should keep in mind when choosing any smoker, whether that be a traditional smoker or an electric one.

Brand

Brand recognition plays a huge role in selecting an electric smoker, especially if you’re going to spend a lot of money on a new unit. Look for a brand that is often recommended by experts, has good customer reviews and customer service, and has a long history of being a trusted company. Most brands on our list are well-known and have served many food enthusiasts for many years.

Price

Keeping your budget in mind is important while shopping for a new electric smoker. Lucky for you, bbq smokers are available at a wide range of prices. There is a smoker for every budget, small or large.

Bonus Features

Bonus features are always fun to play around with, but deciding which ones are most important to you is a must. If you go with a more high-end smoker with Bluetooth technology, you’ll be able to set it and forget it, while enjoying time with your friends and family, without the constant need to check on your meat. On the other hand, though connecting to a phone sounds appealing, keep in mind that added technology means that more could go wrong.

Other great smoker features are things like a built-in meat probe to check the internal temperature of your meat, a digital panel with all the information in one place including temperature and cooking time, or even a warming feature.

BBQ Hero Tip: Don’t over smoke your food! Though finding the perfect amount of smoke may take some experimentation, it’s important to find the sweet spot early in the game.

Features to consider when choosing an electric smoker

Here are a few more essential features to consider when choosing the right electric smoker for you.

Construction Materials

Smokers are meant to be used in an outdoor space, so finding one with durable construction material that can withstand external elements is key. Electric smokers made of high-quality metals like stainless steel and well-structured components are durable and long-lasting.

Compromising on construction material means that your unit may rust easily or have poor insulation. To protect your new electric smoker, we suggest investing a cover to place over it when not in use. This will prolong the life of your smoker.

Dimensions

Dimensions are important for both cooking capacity and storage space. If you’re planning on hosting dinner parties to show off your new smoker, it’s recommended to go with a larger unit that can fit an appropriate amount of food. Adjustable and removable cooking racks are also a bonus because you can rearrange the interior to fit large pieces of meat.

Storing your electric smoker is also a consideration to keep in mind. If you have a small outdoor space, it’s suggested to go with a smaller or vertical electric smoker to save space. If you have a large entertaining area outdoors, then the bigger the better! Furthermore, if you plan to move your smoker around the yard or deck, invest in one with heavy-duty wheels to protect yourself and your unit.

Warranty

The warranty period of a smoker is also an imperative factor to consider. Many electric smokers provide excellent, consistent temperatures and are also great when it comes to adding smoked flavour to your food. But do they have a good warranty that reflects a manufacturer’s confidence in their creation?

A long warranty period means that your chosen smoker is durable, and if you want to replace its components, you can do that for free within the warranty period. However, a warranty period alone shouldn’t be your focal point when choosing a smoker. It does add value to the final product, but there are far more important features to keep in mind.


Safety Tips for Electric Smokers

Smokers of any kind should be handled with care and caution. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind when handling your new electric smoker.

Read The Instructions

Electric smokers come with a lot of moving parts and features that are critical in their performance. To make sure you’re getting the most out of your new electric smoker, and to prevent accidents caused by using it incorrectly, read over the instruction manual before your first smoke.

Don’t Move The Smoker While In Use

Smokers of any kind get very hot when in use. To prevent disaster, avoid moving or adjusting the position of the smoker while it is plugged in. If you must move the unit, wait until it has cooled completely.

Unplug After Use

Unplug your electric smoker from the electrical outlet when it’s not in use. Even if you’re using a weatherproof extension cord that is plugged into a power outlet, it’s important to completely unplug the unit after you’re finished cooking.

BBQ Hero Tip: Season your electric smoker before its first use. This can be done by simply running it empty to burn off the manufacturing residue, coat the interior with smoky flavour, and seal the smoker so that your first real smoke creates the best possible results.

Electric Smoker FAQS

How Should I Clean My BBQ Smoker?

Cleaning your smoker after every use will extend its life and ensure you have years of BBQ to come. To clean, first, unplug the electric smoker, then remove and extinguish any lit wood chips or ash. Remove the ash pan and water pan, and wash both parts. Use a damp cloth to wipe the interior once it has completely cooled. Remove the cooking grates and either hand wash them or put them in the dishwasher if they’re dishwasher safe.


What other kinds of smokers are there?

There are many types of smokers, the big difference is fuel type. Charcoal Smokers use charcoal briquettes or lumps, Pellet Smokers use wood pellets, Gas Smokers use liquid propane, and Electric Smokers use electricity to power a heating element.


Do Electric Smokers need time to preheat?

Yes, smokers of any kind need some time to reach an ideal internal temperature high enough to cook food. Electric smokers can take anywhere from 15-45 minutes to preheat depending on their size and power source.


Should I soak wood chips for an electric smoker?

Soaking wood chips is a controversial topic that most grill masters can’t agree on. It is not necessary to soak wood chips before placing them in your electric smoker.


What is a drip pan?

It basically does what its name implies – collect any grease or liquid that drips down the electric smoker while smoking your food. However, there are some electric smokers that don’t have one, and with many different electric smokers out there, we highly recommend looking for a model that comes with a drip pan to make cleaning your smoker a lot easier.