Electric Smokers! I feel like a cheater!


Brinkman Gourmet Electric SmokerFor a very long time I have made fun of my Dad for buying an electric smoker.  I just couldn’t believe that this man who I looked up to could just switch from a true smoker and charcoals to an electric abomination.  I mean, I really look up to my Pop’s for his culinary skills and patience with a bit o meat on the smoker but I was truly losing faith.

That being said, I have a friend who purchased a Brinkman Gourmet electric smoker for their parents last year and being that they are not big time BBQ folk they decided that a smoker takes too much time and didn’t want to keep it.  My fear came true when they offered this beast to me.

How could I say no?  I mean it’s  a free smoker and gives me one more reason to have to buy more meat.  I knew that I wouldn’t like using it but this would give me a chance to actually have some ammo to argue with my Dad about why to not use an electric smoker.

Well, here I am today, standing here before everyone, shouting at the top of my lungs that I am totally hooked on this thing.  I know that I run the risk of having my BBQ card pulled for saying this but I am dead serious that this was way to dang simple and the food came out pretty good.

I plugged it in, placed a nice piece of Baxter’s Original Pecan on the coil and let it ride.  Within a couple of seconds the smoke was surrounding me and I was hating it less and less.

Over the last weekend I wrapped a beef tenderloin in bacon, slapped it on the smoker and let it go for about 7 hours.Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin This thing turned out perfectly delicious and tender and I just couldn’t believe what was happening.  Really, it was that easy, 1 piece of wood and I had constant smoke at a steady 200 degrees for 7 hours.  I seriously din’t need to do anything else.  Now, doing this is not as much fun as using a traditional smoker but when it is 110 degrees outside I will accept a few shortcuts to keep my sanity.



I had to make sure that this wasn’t just a fluke so I pattied out some burgers, filled with bacon and cheddar cheese.  I decided that I would smoke these burgers and see how it turned out.  Went through the same ritual, added a piece of pecan to the coil and turned it on.  In no time we were smoking again and I let the burgers go for about 3 hours until they were perfectly moist and tasty.

I really can’t get over how easy this was to use and I know that this would not be acceptable for any competition but seems to be working perfectly for me on the porch and right now that’s all that matters.

I guess the bottom line is, I am totally for using an electric smoker for home use and will definitely recommend this particular smoker to anyone who is looking.  And before you ask, because I am using real wood, slow smoked, and on a grill I will not allow this to be called faux ;-)

Comments & Responses

8 Responses so far.

  1. I have an old Electric burner and I am thinking of making a smoker out of a Garbage can or drum with it, Myron Mixon has done that with success, Nice blog, well designed!

  2. HankBob says:

    Heck yeah Wilfred, I watched Alton Brown make one out of clay pots and thought that it was a pretty cool idea. Let me know how that works out.

  3. sad but true I have a Royal Oak electric cabinet smoker my dad got for me because it was cheap (scratch and dent sale) it is so simple and works great – I just try to to bring her out in public (dang that sounds like some old girl friends of mine too) – I use our Pecan and Peach sawdust in a box directly on the coil and she will just puff away

  4. Jon Greene says:

    I have one of those Brinkman electric smokers. My inlaws got it for me for Christmas one year. One of these days I will get or make a “real” smoker. Until then, I will use this one. I get lots of compliments on my ‘que. I just wish it was bigger to put a few more racks of ribs on it LOL

  5. HankBob says:

    Yeah I have found that adding a rib rack on the top rack really helps increase the amount of ribs you can do at once. It just barely fits but it does fit and might help you out.

  6. While an electric smoker is in my opinion a little behind a traditional smoker when it comes to flavor and aroma, you can’t argue with the fact they are way more efficient and get the job done much faster and hassle-free. I am glad you had a positive experience with your Brinkman electric smoker.

  7. Brian Caldwell says:

    Let me tell ya what…
    I love to cook, grill and smoke.
    And with my new home, I was going to treat myself to a new smoker.
    I looked at everything on the market top to bottom weighing the pros and cons. Although I was looking forward to the tending of the coals and wood, I finally settled on the same Brinkmann electric and it was the best decision I could have made. With a couple of thermometers added that thing is full proof.
    What I want to know is whether the pan was used when smoking the burgers?
    I smoke chicken wings up top for an hour on each side without the pan and they get a nice sear from the element on the bottom and a the smoke flavor makes them unbeatable.
    I would expect the burgers to benefit from this as well.
    So, any thoughts on pan or no pan?

  8. HankBob says:

    Thanks for the info Brian. Yeah, I haven’t ever used the pan, I personally just add wood chips and chunks on aluminum that gets put directly on the element. Yeah, having that little bit of sear on the burgers makes the texture absolutely perfect.

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