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Barbecue enthusiasts around the world have spread their wings when it comes to outdoor cooking and smoking has become a big hit. The pellet smoker is actually one of the best types of smokers available because it allows you to control the temperature that you cook the meat and maintain it easily.
We know how important it is for you to have a good outdoor kitchen, so we scoured the market to find several of the top pellet smokers that are available. There are quite a few, and many of them have amazing features that are great, but during our research, we found one that stands out above the rest.
The Camp Chef SmokePro DLX is a smoker that has a great black design that makes it stand out from the crowd. It is made to be durable, and it has plenty of surface space, and it comes with digital heat control systems that will make your barbecue experience even more enjoyable.
How to Choose the Best Pellet Smokers
The main reason that you are getting a pellet smoker is that you want to be able to create some amazing tasting, smoked meat in your own backyard.
As long as you can create mouth-watering slabs of meat on the smoker, you’ll be happy, but for convenience and ease of use, you are going to want the best smoker to accommodate all of your barbecue needs.
What are some other considerations that you should make before purchasing a pellet smoker? Let’s take a look.
Pellet smokers are a large investment, so you want to make sure that the one that you purchase is made from high-quality materials that will last for several years.
Purchasing a smoker that is built with less than the optimal durability will only mean that you will have to deal with repairs or replacing the unit down the line. Not only will a smoker with a quality design last longer, it will produce a better smoke as well.
The size of the cooking area is going to depend on your needs. If you are a person who likes to cook for their family and friends a lot, then a smoker with a large cooking area may be required to accommodate the number of people that you want to feed.
If you cater, you may also need a large smoker, but there are also reasons to get a smaller, more portable model. If you have a cooker that comes complete with wheels, then it will be easy to take it with you camping or to other events where a smoker would be welcomed.
Type of Controls
One of the most important considerations that you need to make with a smoker has to do with the ability to control the temperature. There are four different types of controls that are used for most smokers.
A three-position control is one that features three settings: a low, a medium, and a high temperature. This type of control is sometimes called an LMH control. You have less control over the amount of heat the smoker disperses so your food may not be cooked exactly like you want.
A multi-position control is one that has a temperature knob that can be adjusted. It typically will range from 180 degrees Fahrenheit to about 420 degrees Fahrenheit. They give you a little more control, but they can only be adjusted in increments of 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
A one-touch non-PID control allows you to set the temperature by scaling up or down in five or 10-degree increments. The temperature is often shown on an LCD display so that it is easy to see as well.
A PID control is the one that gives you the most control. You can set it to the temperature that you need, and it will adjust the food on the grill is being cooked.
The temperature range that you can get from a smoker is important, especially if you plan to use other methods of cooking as well. Most smokers should not have an issue hitting a temperature that is between 180 degrees Fahrenheit and 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
This means that you can properly smoke, grill, and even roast on the surface, but searing will not be possible because the temperature cannot reach above 500 degrees. If you plan to sear on the smoker, some of the higher end models can reach 700 degrees Fahrenheit.
Amount of Space Available
Another factor that you need to consider is the amount of space that you have to place a smoker in your outdoor living space. You do not want to go with a large model and find out that it cannot fit into the area that you want it too.
Always, make sure to consider a range of sizes that work for your yard.
A smoker is typically an investment that will cost a few hundred dollars, but the ones that are designed with the most bells and whistles can cost a few thousand. It is important to know your budget and how much you are able to spend without breaking the bank.
Also, take into consideration the quality of the smoker because a smoker that needs to be repaired or replaced will cost you much more in the long run than one that simply has a higher price tag, especially if it is not that much higher.
Unfortunately, there are areas around the country where it can be a bit difficult to find pellets to burn in your smoker. Nothing is worse than having a party and running out of pellets before all of the meat is smoked.
This takes local stores into consideration, but if you are willing to purchase the pellets in bulk, then you are more likely to have luck finding what you are looking for at an online retailer.
To make your cooking experience easier, there are also some additional features that you may want on your new smoker.
Some control options come with meat probes that allow you to monitor your meat without even looking at it. Sometimes these probes can even be programmed to lower the heat on the grill when the meat is at the desired temperature.
Many smokers have a direct grilling option that you can use once you have your meat flavored like you want it. You may also want to look into secondary cooking racks if you are cooking for a lot of people.
Since our lives are so connected, many smokers are as well so that you can maintain that connection while you are smoking your food in the great outdoors. The Wi-Fi functionality that is included with some smokers even allows you to control the temperature and cooking time for an app if you like.
Let’s take a look at the top models below.
Best Pellet Grill Reviews on the Market
This affordable option doubles as a backyard grill and smoker, making it excellent for barbeque enthusiasts.
Novice grill masters find it easy to control the temperature and perfectly cook everything from hamburgers to corn-on-the-cob thanks to the digital heat control system. This automatically feeds the fire with pellets to keep the temperature consistent, and it also provides information on the cooking temperature and internal meat temperature upon request.
Grilling over compressed wood pellets is what gives barbeque its rich, smokey flavor. To really highlight the taste, turn down the heat and slow cook a brisket or whole chicken for an irresistible tender main course. This grill covers the entire cooking range with high and low smoke settings and a temperature range from 160° to over 400°F.
This grill comes with a built-in grease drain and removable ash can so you don’t have to bother with a lengthy clean-up after each cookout. These are patented cleanout systems that reflect the careful design of the product.
The stainless steel construction makes this grill a durable and handsome piece. At 127 pounds, it’s sturdy enough to stay where you put it, but remains mobile with 2 wheels to move it to the perfect location. You’ll also get a large cooking space that provides enough room for multi-family cookouts.
This is one of the most portable options on this list. It has a low, medium, high-temperature control as well as a meat thermometer that utilizes a digital display to help you keep track of the temperature.
This smoker also comes with Wi-Fi for your convenience. It has a 100-foot range, and it allows you to control the temperature with your cell phone. It also allows you to set a timer so that you know when the food reaches a certain internal temperature.
This unit is rather large; in fact, this Pit Boss pellet smoker has a cooking area of 820 square inches between two different racks. It is also very easy to control the temperature with the digital control. It has an automatic start and cools down mode to help you save pellets.
The temperature of this unit ranges from 150 degrees Fahrenheit to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also a LED display that is designed to help you keep track of the temperature without opening the lid.
This grill combines all the features you would want out of your grill into one easy to use model. Camp Chef’s version of a pellet grill offers direct and indirect flame cooking with its Slide & Go technology. Its removable and adjustable top shelf creates double the cooking space for you, letting you grill, smoke, and heat all at the same time.
This grill has a total 0f 811 sq. in. of cooking space, making it great for cooking for large groups of people. If you are cooking 2 different things at once, the PID digital controller can measure the internal temperature of each with its 2 stainless steel probes and control smoke settings, so you can get the right amount of flavor into your food. It also allows for digital temperature control, so you can get the exact heat settings you need for your food.
The pellet hopper has an automatic release and bucket holder to make adding pellets and cleaning up extremely easy. In order to also promote easy cleaning, both shelves can fit into a dishwasher, and the grill has its own patented ash cleanout lever that empties into a cup for easy disposal. It also comes with 2 removable shelves. Make outdoor cooking fun with the Camp Chef PG24MZG and keep things easy. This convection-style cooking grill is a great option for grillers looking for a unit that does it all, is affordable, and high quality.
The Pit Boss Austin XL Wood Pellet grill gives the griller great value with a pellet grill capable of cooking for large groups of people. Providing 1,000 sq. in. of cooking space over 2 tiers of porcelain-coated shelves, this grill is made for cookouts. It is constructed out of high-quality steel that can withstand high heat and regular use without compromise.
This grill can be started and shut down remotely via its digital control board. It features a bright LED display for easy reading. It has a temperature range between 150ºF and 500ºF for cooking, barbecuing, smoking, and warming food. The Pit Boss Austin XL allows for both direct and indirect grilling, to suit different recipes. The grill has a high-temperature copper-finish on the lid and comes with a removable, stainless steel shelf.
The great part about this grill is that it is completely fueled by wood pellets so that your food can have a delicious flavor each time. It has a 31-pound hopper box with its own purge system so that loading up more pellets and cleaning them out is a breeze.
This grill is meant to last and comes with 4 heavy-duty stainless steel casters for easy moving. The Pit Boss Austin XL Wood Pellet Grill is a great choice for all grillers, offering a number of different operation modes to craft the perfect meal.
With the ability to connect to your smartphone or even collude with Alexa, this grill is a smart grill with a large cooking capacity. The 575 square inches of cooking area and an 18-pound hopper ensure that you can cook for throngs and still have pellets left over. With tons of different flavors of pellets to smoke with, this grill and smoker cooks your meats with indirect heat.
This unit also has versatility in that it can cook hot and fierce, or low and long. From BBQing to charring to braising for hours on end, this grill does it all. No more worrying about flare-ups, constantly shoving pellets into a hopper or uneven cooking: This grill is a great fit for novices and pitmasters.
The high-tech software in this unit controls a convection fan and the automatic auger, which Traeger calls the D2 Direct Drive, for smooth pellet feeding and even cooking, enhanced even more by the excellent wood-fired flavor. It even has a sensor to let you know when the hopper is running low so you’re not surprised.
You can even control and monitor your food with your smartphone or voice-controlled digital assistant. Standing over a hot grill is a thing of the past. No more watching over the grill while the rest of the party has fun; now you can cook and enjoy the festivities. For all of the features this grill provides, it’s also offered at an affordable price point.
With a temperature range from 160 up to 500°F, this grill and smoker can handle any cooking technique you want to throw at it. Smoke, bake, roast, char, braise, or grill, this unit has the ability, precise control, and surface area to handle almost any challenge.
If you’re looking for a versatile unit with enough surface area to accommodate a lot of food, this is the grill for you. With this Pro Pellet BBQ, you can set your digital control and largely forget about the smoker, unless you want to periodically spritz the meat.
It’s incredibly easy to cook your meat precisely and maintain even temps throughout with the smart digital temp control, which keeps your grill at exactly the right heat.
The automatic auger dispenses the pellets at a steady pace to keep a level cooking time. The manufacturer’s patented Ash Cleanout system makes maintenance a breeze and flare-ups a thing of the past.
The removable ash cup and adjustable smoke chimney let you specialize your grill to your own expectations, and the extra-large hopper keeps you cooking for long periods. With a push of a button, you can toggle the grill temperature or use the meat probe to check the internal temperature of any of your dishes.
With some of the most recent advancements in grilling technology and temperature control, this grill and smoker can do it all at your next BBQ event. You don’t have to babysit this grill; just set it and let it do all the work for you.
This pellet grill and smoker help make even a novice griller or barbeque-er stand out. For experienced outdoor cooking enthusiasts, this grill can hone your many techniques, like braising, slow roasting, and grilling. The 6-in-1 versatility makes this grill more than just an outdoor cooker. You may find yourself baking an apple pie or smoking pork butt for pulled pork.
This grill isn’t lightweight enough at 103 pounds to be portable, but it makes up for this in sturdiness.
With a 572 square inch cooking area, it’s great for multiple chickens cut into pieces, 2 dozen hamburgers, or 5 racks of lamb, along with other tasty nibbles. And with a hopper capacity of 18 lbs., you can cook for long periods. Unlike other charcoal and propane grills, this provides even cooking with minimal hot spots.
This grill makes any grilling technique viable because it makes it simple. The combo of the digital thermometer and automatic auger elevates any chef’s skills to sublime. With a steel sheet above the firebox and another steel sheet to direct grease run-off, you don’t have to worry about flame-ups. It also makes clean-ups a breeze; simply remove the collection bucket and clean.
Not only that, but this unit comes with 2 meat thermometers that attach straight to the grill for instant readouts. This grill is a superb marriage of practicality and modern technology.
9. REC TEC RT-680 Wood Pellet Grill
The REC TEC RT-680 Wood Pellet Grill is a durable unit that is built with a solid stainless steel frame. The grill comes with PID temperature control to make it simple to adjust the temperature, and it has Smart Grill Technology that helps to maintain the desired temperature throughout the entire cooking time.
The pellets are fed into the smoker automatically, which helps keep the temperature from fluctuating too much. In addition, the range for the temperature starts at 180 degrees Fahrenheit and reaches 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
10. Louisiana Grills 61100-LG1100 Pellet Grill
This smoker has one of the largest cooking areas on this list; in fact, it is a full 900 square inches. It has a simple push button control that is easy to use. It heats up very quickly, which means that your food will be cooked sooner with this grill. There is also an indirect cooking surface that you can use for slow cooking your meats.
The digital temperature display ranges from a mere 170 degrees Fahrenheit to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, so you can easily get a nice sear on your food if you wish.
If you like smoked meats, there are a lot of options for creating them at home in your own backyard. A pellet smoker is a great cooking device that is becoming more and more popular in the barbecue world. Hopefully, our pellet smoker reviews have helped you decide which one works for you.
We liked the Camp Chef SmokePro DLX Pellet Grill for its design, durability, and cooking space. It also reaches a temperature of up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit so you will be able to get a beautiful sear with this grill. If this smoker does not fit your needs, check out the other models that we reviewed to find one that does.