If you’re interested in adding a new electric smoker to your home, it can be a challenging task. Those who don’t have insight into how this type of smoker works, what size is right, and what features are needed can easily become overwhelmed. That’s before even taking into consideration the range of prices that these smokers can fall in between. Rather than taking a wild stab in the dark about which model to choose, we wanted to share some insight on some of the best smokers out there today.
We’ll take a look at several important things to consider when looking at your options and you can decide which matter the most to you. So, come along on this journey and by the end, you’ll likely have a great idea of what type of electric smoker you want to add to your household.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Best Electric Smoker for 2020
- 1.1 Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker
- 1.2 Smoke Hollow SH19079518 Electric Smoker
- 1.3 Char-Broil Vertical Electric Smoker
- 1.4 Masterbuilt 20075315 Front Controller Smoker with Viewing Window and RF Remote Control, 40-Inch
- 1.5 Masterbuilt 20071117 30" Digital Electric Smoker
- 1.6 Masterbuilt 20070215 Electric Smoker with Bluetooth 40"
- 1.7 Dyna-Glo DGU732BDE-D 30" Digital Electric Smoker
- 1.8 Char-Broil Standard Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch
- 1.9 Masterbuilt 20077615 Digital Electric Smoker with Window and Bonus Pack, 30"
- 2 Why The Electric Smoker is Right for You
- 3 What to Know Before Choosing a Smoker
- 4 Wrapping Up
The Best Electric Smoker for 2020
Now that you know a bit more about the electric smoker and the features to look at when shopping, we want to provide you with a list of some of the best options out there right now. We’ve compiled this list with analog and digital options and they range from beginner friendly to being more suitable for an experienced smoker.
Cuisinart COS-330 Electric Smoker
The COS-330 smoker from Cuisinart is priced for those with a budget and comes from a company many already trust. Unlike other inexpensive smokers, this one has a broad range of temperatures and caps out at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It also comes with a three-year warranty, which is longer than many other brands offer.
This smoker doesn’t have electronic temperature controls but there is a knob on the side to change the temperature. An analog thermometer is located on the front, so you are able to monitor the temperature while the smoker is running. It offers 548-square inches of space, which many will find large enough for their needs. Those who often entertain or have tons of people over may find it a bit small.
One of the things that concerns some people is how lightweight the smoker is. The vents and tray for ash also seem less durable than on some other models. However, it does have a chrome spring door handle that is made to avoid burning any hands when opening or closing the smoker. It’s also known for being simple to assemble and comes with four chrome-coated racks so you can start using it right away.
● Features a three-year warranty
● Offers a maximum temperature of 400 degrees
● Enough cooking space for even large families
● Includes an ergonomic spring door handle
● May be too lightweight for some buyers
● Does not come with an electronic temperature control
Smoke Hollow SH19079518 Electric Smoker
This Smoke Hollow smoker is a dedicated budget smoker for outdoor cooking. It is fairly simple to use and is engineered to do so in an efficient manner. It includes three smoking racks, digital control panel with time, temperature, and on/off buttons. The smoker is easy to use and easy to clean with the durability you want in a smoker if you plan to use it on a regular basis.
Using the smoker simply requires plugging it in, setting your digital controls, and letting the smoker do its job to prepare chicken, beef, pork, fish, or whatever else you want to cook. There is an integrated temperature control alongside an 800-watt heating element, which offers consistent and even smoking experience. This Smoke Hollow model also has a superior level of insulation which adds to the durability and the great job it can do preparing your favorite foods.
The three racks offer plenty of space for all your favorite meats. There is a removable bowl to add chips before you fire things up. This Smoke Hollow smoker also includes an adjustable air damper, which gives a higher level of control over the smoke. The drip pan is also removal for simple cleanup.
● Well-insulated to keep heat in while smoking
● Comes with three chrome-coated smoking racks
● Easy transport courtesy of handles on the sides
● Features adjustable damper for smoke control
● Refilling the wood chip tray requires opening the main door
● Some may prefer a wheeled smoker, rather than one with handles
● Does not come with a front window and may be best for experienced smokers
Char-Broil Vertical Electric Smoker
Another great mid-range smoker is the Char-Broil Vertical, which offers 505-square inches of cooking surface. This can easily accommodate whole chickens or turkeys, as well as smaller foods. The smoker comes with three chrome-plated racks that are adjustable so you can switch things up as needed to cook the foods you enjoy. However, it doesn’t have digital temperature controls.
The Char-Broil Vertical is durable and has a double walled construction. That means that it is well insulated to keep heat inside and making the smoking process easier. The temperature will be consistent so your food cooks evenly, regardless of what is inside. There is a wood chip box and a water pan included with the purchase, so after popping those on, you can start your smoking.
As far as cleaning goes, this smoker is above average compared to the competitors. You can take the racks out to wash or wipe down after removing your leftovers. There is also a grease trap that can be removed to clean after use. Other than that, the inside of the smoker can be wiped down with a cloth to remove any oil, dirt, or debris left from the food.
● Simple cleaning and maintenance
● Easy to use even for beginning smokers
● Extremely affordable yet high-quality
● Compact design works well for those with limited space
● Analog controls make it hard to fine tune temperature
● Power cord is quite short so an extension cord may be needed
● Door lock system may not always shut tightly
Masterbuilt 20075315 Front Controller Smoker with Viewing Window and RF Remote Control, 40-Inch
Masterbuilt is one of the best-known options when it comes to electric smokers. That is because the brand is not only known for offering moderately priced smokers but also for packing in tons of wanted features in the process. This model offers 975 square inches of space for cooking, four cooking racks, a drip pan, and a mechanism for catching drips.
One of the stand-out features with this model is that it comes with an integrated control panel which features a blue LED display to make it easier to view when grilling in the bright sunshine. It’s also been built for easy cleaning, as the entire interior can be removed so you can get into all the corners easily. The smoker can be washed quickly with soap and water or you can use the dishwasher if that is more convenient.
Assembling this smoker can take a bit of time and effort, which may be a disadvantage for those who want to get the electric smoker up and running quickly. But once it’s ready to go, you can adjust the four racks to cook any meats you’d like, including larger items like upright turkeys.
● Plenty of space with 975 square inches of cooking space
● Adjustable racks so you can cook various cuts of meat
● Offers LED display for easy viewing in the bright sun
● Easy to clean and maintain
● Some assembly is required
● Digital thermometer is not always accurate
● Glass window is hard to see through
Masterbuilt 20071117 30" Digital Electric Smoker
The Masterbuilt 20071117 comes with everything you need to start smoking meats. It comes with the smoking cabinet, four smoking racks, a water pan, a drip pan, and a wood chip tray. This is a vertical smoker that features an electric heating element. One of the first things you may notice is that it sits fairly low to the ground, which means adding or removing food and adding chips will require some squatting.
This smoker comes with a fully insulated body for less heat loss and more consistent temperatures. It also has an integrated thermometer to keep the heat right where it should be at all times. The top of this smoker model has a digital control panel that is easy to use, even when the smoker is in use. It also makes use of a wood chip pan on the side of the smoker, so you don’t need to open up the body and let out smoke to refill.
One of the benefits of this smoker and others by Masterbuilt is that many users laud the great customer service from the company. There is also a huge social media presence on Facebook of people who use the brand’s products. On the company website, you can find manuals, FAQs, and a number you can call to ask questions or provide the company with your concerns.
● Setting the temperature and time is simple
● Features a latched door for safety
● Adding additional chips is easier than other models
● Customer service is extremely good
● Comes with only basic racks, although specialty racks can be purchased
● Doesn’t come with a window to watch the smoking happen
Masterbuilt 20070215 Electric Smoker with Bluetooth 40"
This is a large 40” smoker that offers 975-square inches of cooking surface. It also comes with four chrome-coated racks that may be adjusted. That’s large enough to make tons of food. The heating element is 1,200 watts for smoking at up to 275 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also an air damper to control the smoke and a built-in meat thermometer so you can get accurate temperatures at any time.
However, what really sets this smoker apart is that it can be controlled using a tablet or smartphone because it has Bluetooth technology. You’ll have to stay within a certain range, but this is a convenience you aren’t likely to see on other smokers out there. You can sit inside and control your smoker without having to sit out in the hot sun.
This model also has a side wood chip feeder which makes adding fuel a cinch. There aren’t a lot of disadvantages with this electric smoker, although some find the wood chip bin is a bit small and Bluetooth connectivity can be a little touchy at times. For the price, it packs in the features you want and has sufficient space for almost anyone’s needs.
● Features wheels and handles for easy transport
● Offers side chip loading so no need to open the main unit
● Comes with built-in probe thermometer for convenience
● Able to be controlled by Bluetooth with your phone or tablet
● More difficult to clean than some electric smokers
● Bluetooth function can be weaker than expected
Dyna-Glo DGU732BDE-D 30" Digital Electric Smoker
Unlike the first electric smoker from Dyna-Glo, this one comes with digital controls. There are easy to use and located above the door to the unit. A simple button press is all that is required to set the temperature and time. It has 732-square inches of cooking surface and four different adjustable trays to hold whatever you need to cook. With the integrated meat thermometer on offer, you can always be aware of the temperature of the meat while smoking is occurring.
This model includes double insulation to keep the heat in while cooking. There are also a total of two locks for safety purposes. One of the things that this smoker is missing is a glass window so you can see your food cooking. However, the thermometer may be enough for those who are not total beginners to smoking.
Wood chips can be added through the use of a side chip tray, so you don’t lose heat. It also has rear wheels for easier transport, but some find that they are a bit smaller than would be ideal. It’s the perfect size and offers plenty of space to cook for a large family.
● Offers digital thermostat and push button controls
● Wood chip rack is located on the side to avoid heat loss
● Comes with integrated meat thermometer for a perfect smoke
● Has no front window, which may be frustrating for beginners
● Some find it doesn’t hold heat as well as expected
Char-Broil Standard Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch
This smoker by Char-Broil is perfect for a family who enjoys eating lots of smoked meats. It offers 725-square inches of cooking surface and includes four adjustable smoking racks. It also includes high-quality air dampers and fire access doors, so you have more control over what you are cooking. Monitoring the heat is simple due to the LED display control panel that is included. This model has quality insulation through a double wall construction.
The Char-Broil Standard Digital also has a removable temperature gauge that is easy to use. It has both handles and wheels so it can be moved from the kitchen or garage into your backyard without much trouble. Another exceptional feature with this electric smoker is the warming feature. It will ensure the foods you cook stay warm until you wrangle the family and are ready to serve a meal.
For beginners, this model has an automatic shut off feature which means it will turn off as soon as the meat reaches the temperature you want. This removes the chance of making mistakes or leaving the meat in for too long when cooking. Between that and the reasonable price, this is a great entry-level model but with features that may make it attractive to those more well-versing in smoking.
● Features wheels and handle for easy mobility
● Easy to use option with a large cooking area
● Features a removable thermometer
● Four adjustable and removable racks
● Doesn’t produce as much smoke as some models
● Some believe heating element doesn’t work properly
Masterbuilt 20077615 Digital Electric Smoker with Window and Bonus Pack, 30"
Our final pick is another Masterbuilt, which sums up how exceptional this brand is when it comes to electric smokers. The brand has been producing smokers and other equipment for outdoor cooking for more than 40 years. This model features an 800-watt heating element and more than 700-square inches of space for smoking. It also has a remote to monitor the temperature inside and make adjustments without touching the smoker itself.
This model has a transparent window so you can easily watch your food while it is cooking. It also has internal lights and an electrical panel to change the temperature and other settings if you prefer that to the remote. This smoker has a side wood chip loader which is convenient, as well as chrome-plated racks for the best smoking.
Another perk of this smoker is that it’s lightweight and easy to move, but it retains a large amount of durability. It also has a built-in probe thermometer so you can check your meat’s cook at any time. The insulation is double walled so you can expect that the heat will stay exactly where you want it to be. On top of that, the model comes with a smoking recipes CD so you can find some new dishes to try using your electric smoker.
● Easy to use for even beginners
● High quality level of insulation to keep heat in
● Simple control over the level of heat
● Warranty is limited to only 90 days
● Limited to 275 degrees maximum
Why The Electric Smoker is Right for You
If you aren’t sure why you’d want to consider an electric smoker over a gas smoker or even a charcoal smoker, that’s understandable. However, we want to offer some insight into the reasons many people make this choice.
Smoke Anything You Like
With an electric smoker, there are one or more heating elements which make up the power source. That makes it simple to control the time and temperature while smoking based on your preferences. You can cook any food you can imagine, while it might be more difficult in a gas or charcoal smoker, which don’t have the same precision of temperature available.
No Need for Experience
Temperature control and time are simple to set with an electric smoker, making it a fantastic option for someone who is a beginner. There isn’t a lot that you have to control on your own. If you have a recipe, wood chips, water, and food to smoke, you can smoke it without much trouble. This isn’t the case with other types of smokers where you have to consider the heat of the fire or charcoal and pay great attention through the entire process.
Less Chance of Injury
It is far less likely that you will be injured when using an electric smoker because there is no fire present. This also means that your family is safer, especially if your smoker has locking doors to keep small fingers away. You can leave the smoker unattended without worry. In fact, this method of cooking is more similar to using an oven than anything else.
Maintenance is Straightforward
With smokers that use charcoal or wood, there’s a lot more mess than when you choose an electric smoker. Once your cooking is complete, all you have to do is take out the wood chip tray and toss the remains in the trash. Cleaning the inside of the smoker is equally simple in most cases. The racks and trays can be removed for simple cleaning, too. You can even pop them right into the dishwasher if you prefer.
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What to Know Before Choosing a Smoker
Understanding some of the basic parts of a smoker is a good way to start. It’s not as complicated as you might think and there are only a handful of components that are crucial to be aware of. First of all, the cabinet should be stainless-steel or a porcelain coated steel to offer durability and insulation. Some models will have windows so you can look in, which should be created from tempered steel.
In order to choose the best smoker, you want to look for a precise thermometer that lets you know the temperature inside of the smoker at all times. This lets you adjust the temp as needed based on the food you are cooking.
If you choose a smoker from a brand that offers replacement parts, that can be a plus. You may be able to replace a single part rather than buying a whole new smoker.
Inside Your Electric Smoker
Most smokers are going to have an interior that is similar to the next smoker. You’ll see a heating element, smoking racks, and there may be grease trays and wood chip trays. The bottom is where the heating element lies, while the trays are in the middle and any smoking racks will be at the top of the smoker. Smokers typically come with between two and six trays for cooking meat and vegetables. Some also have sausage racks and other items to cook specialty products.
The Outside of the Smoker
You’ll find that there are several smoker designs and most of the features have a purpose. For instance, glass doors are great for beginners since it allows you to see what is going on inside as you cook. Some smokers also have wheels or handles, which makes it easier to transport the smoker from inside to outdoors. Wheeled models can come with two wheels or a total of four.
Performance Level of the Smoker
Smokers are often made to fit a certain skill level of the person using them. Beginners are best off with simple smokers without a lot of extras. This might include analog models which are less expensive, as well. This allows the person using the smoker to learn more about the smoking process before moving on to other models. As the person smoking becomes more skilled, there are many more features to choose from. You may be able to use multiple heating elements or control the temperature in a more precise manner.
Size of the Smoker Matters
When you’re looking for the perfect smoker for you and your household, size is one of the most important aspects of that process. If you are only cooking for a small family, a small electric smoker will do the job. However, if you want to smoke meats for family and friends, you need a larger smoker. Many of these can prepare food for around eight people without any trouble. There are also even larger smokers which are most often used for catering and food service applications.
Consider Where the Smoker Will Go
Before moving further, it’s a good idea to consider where your smoker will be stored. Even if you use it in the backyard, you may want to leave it on a patio or garage when not in use. Think about where it will go as this will offer insight into the amount of space you have available. Smokers are made to be outdoors, but they do have electric parts so getting them wet isn’t a good idea. Make sure if they are left outside that they have a protective cover to keep them in good shape for a longer time.
Where to Purchase an Electric Smoker
While you are welcome to look for a smoker locally, you’ll likely have the best luck online. You can find reviews and extra information about a smoker before you decide to purchase it. You also can often find a less expensive price when shopping online since there is a lot of competition between the sites that offer them for sale. Most companies will have your smoker out in less than a week and sometimes in as little as two days.
Smoker Brands to Trust
The best electric smokers often come from a few high-quality brands. These brands compete with each other by attempting to offer the best smoker out there. If you want to go with a well-known brand, Masterbuilt, Char-Broil, Cuisinart, and Smoke Hollow are an excellent place to start your search. These are high-quality brands that offer fantastic smokers. However, other brands can also put out amazing smokers, even if they don’t have the same name recognition. This is somewhere that you need to consider reviews and features before choosing the right electric smoker for your household.
Think About Your Budget
When you are purchasing a smoker, you can expect them to range from around $100 to much higher. The price is going to depend on the brand, size, quality, and extra features included. Determining whether a specific smoker is priced in the right range isn’t as hard as you might expect. Look at the quality of the materials used in the smoker. The best options are going to be heavier and more stable than the others. Any extra features will also add to the price accordingly.
Those who are happy with an analog smoker without all the bells and whistles may find that an inexpensive smoker at $100 or $200 is absolutely acceptable. However, those who want things like digital displays, LED lights, and Bluetooth are going to be seeing more expensive prices. Think about your budget and what you can afford before you get your heart set on something out of your price range.
At this point, you should be fully capable of choosing a great electric smoker for your home, no matter your skill level or the space you have available. Whether you choose one of the smokers on this list or not, you have the information you need to make a choice that is right for your home. Just remember the importance of considering your space, amount of food you want to smoke, what features will make your life easier, and what your budget is.
Soon you will be able to make your own smoked dishes without the need for burning wood or heating up charcoal. There’s no simpler or less messy option out there. Take a look at your options and have fun!