The complete resource list for learning how to smoke meat at home

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Smoking meat is something that everyone can learn. It also does not have to be prohibitively expensive. You just need a basic Weber Kettle and a modest room to set up your barbecue.

The greatest thing is that with just a little amount of investigation, you’ll be eating wonderful smoked meat as you learn. Unlike the old pit masters who learnt everything the hard way (and ruined a lot of good meat in the process), you can learn from the best bbq and smoking experts without ever leaving your home.

There’s a lot of information out there, but I’ve combed the web for the greatest resources for learning how to smoke meat like an expert.

  1. BBQ smoking basics
  2. How to buy the right smoker
  3. What are the necessary smoking meat accessories?
  4. What to look for when purchasing and using charcoal
  5. What wood types are suitable for smoking
  6. What are the best beginners guides
  7. How to smoke different types of meat
  8. What are the most typical blunders made by inexperienced smokers?
  9. What are the finest internet barbecue and smoking blogs and communities?

1) BBQ smoking basics

Learn how to smoke meat at home – ultimate resource list

  • Learn the Techniques of Charcoal GrillingCovers a lot of useful fundamentals, such as the best technique to light a charcoal grill, temperature management, and getting started with charcoal cooking.
  • Smoking Meat 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Barbecue Short and simple approach to getting started with BBQ ribs.
  • Temperature Control, the Two-Zone Setup, and Indirect Cooking Details on some of the most essential aspects of smoking meat.
  • Using Vents to Control Temperature on Charcoal and Wood Burning Grills and Smokers More from Amazing Ribs. Once you’ve mastered temperature management, you’ll be well on your way to great home-cooked BBQ.

2) How to buy the right smoker

If you’re just starting started with smoking, you generally just need a reasonably priced smoker. A Weber Kettle grill is very adaptable and may be used as an outstanding smoker because to its affordability, durability, and flexibility to grill or smoke.

If you want to start with a specialized smoker, the Weber Smokey Mountain Charcoal Cooker is a wonderful place to start. Alternatively, click on the links below for more detailed guidance.

  • The Best Smokers for Less Than $500 Serious Eats’ guide to affordable smokers under $500, updated in 2015, lays down a variety of alternatives, including log burners, charcoal smokers, gas smokers, pellet smokers, and electric smokers, and gives recommendations for each.
  • The Ultimate Weber Smokey Mountain Grill Buying Guide We went into great detail to explain everything you need to know before purchasing a Smokey Mountain, including how it compares to other popular kinds of smokers.
  • How to Purchase a Smoker Smoking JesusMeathead Goldwyn explains what to look for when purchasing a smoker. A short glance at temperature control, materials, and accessories, as well as full evaluations of various smokers.
  • Top BBQs & Grills for the Pit Master Tips on what to look for in a charcoal grill, including materials used, pricing, size, and features.

3) What are the essential accessories for smoking meat

The benefit of utilizing a Weber Kettle to begin smoking meat is that you do not need to purchase a lot of pricey equipment. While I usually advocate using a Charcoal Chimney Starter to start your charcoal grill and a reliable leave-in thermometer to monitor temps, you may improvise on the rest and get decent results.

  • 6 Essential Grilling Tools A solid breakdown of the six essential components, with links to purchase.
  • A Buying Guide With Reviews And Ratings For Barbecue Accessories, Tools, And ToysA detailed overview of a variety of third-party accessories for turning a Weber grill into a smoker, as well as regular cooking gear to possess.

4) What to look out for when buying and using charcoal

You’ve chosen to convert from gas to charcoal cooking. All you need is a bag from the shop, right? To begin, any charcoal will do, although I recall being astonished by the variety available.

Choose quality hardwood lump charcoal over cheap charcoal that is kept together with petroleum chemicals. Charcoal is one of the key factors you may manipulate, so it’s worth playing with.

  • Everything You Should Know About Purchasing Charcoal It’s useful to get a brief overview of your many alternatives when it comes to purchasing charcoal.
  • Is Lump Charcoal Truly All That? I don’t want to be labeled a charcoal snob, but this essay makes a compelling argument for it.
  • Briquettes or Lumps in the Great Charcoal Debate? We can all agree that charcoal is preferable than gas. We clearly need something else to debate about.

5) What wood types are suitable for smoking

You may use anything from the BBQ department to obtain a decent outcome, just as you can with charcoal. I still advocate knowing about the best uses for various kinds of wood.

  • How to Make Use of Smoke Woods One of the finest aspects of cooking with charcoal is the opportunity to utilize various kinds of wood during smoking. Discover how to use various types of wood.
  • Up in Smoke: Everything You Need to Know About Smoke Woods for Grilling Posters with typical wood food pairings and advice on when to use chips, cunks, or planks are handy.
  • What You Should Know About Wood, Smoke, and Fire What you need to know may be a bit of an exaggeration. If you want to learn all there is to know about smoking with wood, bookmark this page.
  • Best Meat Smoking Wood A Guide to Smoking Hardwoods A nice overview of the heavy and light woods frequently used for smoking, along with taste descriptions for each.

6) The best beginner bbq guides

You’ve purchased your charcoal grill, put it up, and are ready to cook! These are all excellent beginnings to smoking on a Weber Kettle or comparable BBQ.

  • How to Make Your Kettle Grill a Smoker Step-by-step instructions for cooking at home, even with the most basic of grills.
  • Setting Up a Charcoal Grill for Smoking or Grilling If you don’t have a specialized smoker, this detailed guide on setting up your charcoal grill is an excellent place to start.
  • The Snake Technique Low and Slow Charcoal Kettle Technique (VIDEO) Learn how to set up your grill for lengthy (8+ hour) meals without adding extra charcoal.

7) How to smoke different types of meat

To smoke various kinds of meat, you employ many of the same ideas and methods. I’d still suggest beginning with a forgiving meat like pig butt or chicken before progressing to ribs and ultimately brisket.

Pork butt / shoulder:

  • Franklin’s BBQ: Pulled Pork (VIDEO) Discover how to make Texas-style pulled pork butt. Simple processes with no injecting or brining.
  • Recipe for Perfect Pulled Pork More extensive cooking instructions for a pig butt, but this time without any marinades, injections, or brines.


  • Step-by-step directions with photographs (great if you haven’t removed the membrane before) and wonderful bourbon-bacon barbecue sauce for smoked BBQ baby back ribs.
  • How To Smoke Perfect Baby Back Ribs: Tim Love’s straightforward and easy directions for smoked baby back ribs.


  • Weber Kettle Charcoal Grilled Spatchcock Chicken (VIDEO) Learn how to use a Weber kettle to cook a complete spatchcock (butterflied) chicken.
  • On the Weber Kettle, smoked chicken A whole chicken, a BBQ seasoning, olive oil, and hickory, pecan, or apple pieces are all you need to produce wonderful smoked chicken.


  • Brisket that has been smoked and finished in the oven A step-by-step guide to choosing, prepping, and smoking brisket. This dish employs the contentious Texas crutch method, which entails smoking for many hours before wrapping in foil and finishing in the oven.
  • Texas Style Barbecued Beef Brisket Step-by-step directions are provided, as well as suggestions for the best ways to chop your brisket.

8) The most common mistakes amateur smokers make

Experimenting, making errors, and modifying are all part of learning how to smoke meat at home. Having said that, practically everyone makes a few blunders when they initially start out. Learn from their mistakes.

  • Top 12 smoking blunders that may destroy your grill This website contains a detailed breakdown of typical BBQ blunders and how to prevent them.
  • 12 Grilling Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make (But Probably Will) Avoid meat that is rough, sooty, or even hazardous. Discover how to prevent the most frequent blunders.

9) The best online bbq & smoking blogs & communities

Reading and participating in online BBQ community forms and blogs is an excellent method to accelerate the learning process. Many others are sharing their barbeque experiences, and these are the greatest locations to participate.

  • BBQ on Reddit A fantastic community of BBQ aficionados. There are a lot of images and BBQ write-ups.
  • Reddit Tobacco Use Another Reddit, this one devoted to improving cuisine with the taste of wood smoke. Lots of delicious-looking photographs and lively debate.
  • Forums for the BBQ Brethren With over 1,842,140 postings regarding backyard BBQ alone, there’s a good possibility that someone else has previously asked the same question as you.
  • Texas BBQ Discussion Forum There are several specific forums for recipes, general BBQ conversation, competition, and other topics.

Now it’s your turn

These are just a handful of the most excellent sources to learn how to smoke meat at home. I am aware that there are several resources available that I did not include. I’m keen to know where you go for the finest BBQ knowledge. Tell me in the comments!


What supplies do you need to smoke meat?

You should possess the following grill and smoker accessories:
A dependable wireless meat thermometer.
BBQ gloves that are resistant to heat.
BBQ Tongs that are sturdy.
A BBQ grill brush to keep your grill clean.
A meat thermometer that reads instantly.
Trimming using a sharp boning knife.
A slicing knife for precise portioning.
A good butcher’s block.

What is the best meat to smoke for beginners?

What are the finest meats to smoke as a beginner?
Butt (pulled pork) from Boston If you’re new to meat smoking, we suggest beginning with this.
Chicken, whole.
Brisket of beef.
Ribs de porc.
Shank of lamb.
Cheeks of beef.
Steak Tomahawk.
We’re all about going slow and low.

How do you smoke food for beginners?

Here’s how it’s done:
To begin, put your coals on one side.
On the opposite side, place a drip pan.
Get your coals going and get them to a cooking temperature.
Cover your coals with a layer of wood chips.
Place a layer of liquid in the drip pan to help with the smoking process for the greatest results.

How to smoke meat step by step?

Configure two temperature probes. You’ll need to keep an eye on the temperature to maintain your grill constant at 225°F.
Light a Chimney Starter using Charcoal.
After opening the intake and chimney baffles, add lit coals.
Keep your body temperature stable.
To add taste, add wood bits.
Make the smoke moist.
Give it some time.

How do you smoke meat for beginners?

Low and slow is the way to go.

The ideal approach to smoke is to do it slowly and indirectly, with the addition of wood smoke. If you’re using a charcoal grill, create your fire on one side and arrange your meat on the other. When smoking, never place the meat directly over a flame.

Should you flip meat when smoking?

A competent food smoker will also save you the time and effort of turning the meat since the heat source is well-positioned for uniform heat distribution. We also recommend not hurrying while turning your chunk of meat. Allow it to smoke for a few minutes before flipping your meat if necessary.

What is the easiest thing to smoke first time?

Shoulder of pork. Rib Roast on a Stand.
Buttocks of PorkBest Smoked Meats for Beginners
Chicken, whole. For novices, one of the simplest meats to smoke is a whole chicken.
Thighs of chicken. Grill smoked chicken thighs to finish.
Wings made from chicken. Chicken wings that have been smoked.
Turkey that has been smoked.
Ribs de Boeuf.
Ribs, spare.
The Prime Rib

What meat is good to smoke all day?

Fatty portions of meat, such as beef brisket, pig shoulder, and ribs, are ideal for smoking. Although smoking may cause certain meats to dry out, the substantial fat content of brisket and pork shoulder helps keep them moist, tender, and flavorful.

What is the hardest thing to smoke?

What is the most difficult meat to smoke? Brisket is the smoking’s holy grail. From competitive chefs to committed pit masters and barbecue fans, everyone agrees that beef brisket is the most difficult meat to perfect.

What is the easiest food to smoke?

What is the most simple meat to smoke?
Sausage that has been smoked.
Chops of smoked pork.
Fillets of smoked fish.
Thick sliced smoked steak.
Smoked turkey thigh or breast.
Smoked chicken thigh or breast.

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