SMOKER: electric or propane

BearFoot

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 6, 2018
Messages
365
Location
Alaska
Masterbuilt Smoker, I got from Cabelas works great! For years, I used home built smokers, using electric frying pan. My Masterbuilt, with digital control, is sweet!
 

PAGOAT

Active member
Joined
Feb 9, 2016
Messages
370
Location
York, PA
I think it comes down to what your really want to make in it. I have for jerky and bologna / sausage a smoker I built that is 4x4x8 feet with a regular entry door siding and a shingled roof "picture an outhouse". Inside I use a propane turkey cooker burner and a 12 inch cast pan. I drilled a hole for the hose to go out to a 20lb bottle. I cut apple wood and lay on the pan to smolder and smoke, I can do 200lbs of bologna / sausage at once and a load of jerky. For cooking say chicken / fish/ roast I have a Pit Boss pellet grill that works great when you need a little extra heat and also I'm not constantly watching temp because it has a lot better control.
 

mdhunter

Active member
Joined
Aug 13, 2009
Messages
856
Location
Maryland
I have an electric and have never thought of switching. The precise temperature control is what sold me.
 

TwistedSage

Active member
Joined
Jan 19, 2018
Messages
210
Location
Eastern NM
Horizontal Oklahoma Joe's. Mostly Oak for long smokes and mesquite for shorter smokes or grilling. I can have a fire In the box and shovel coal into the grill when I'm ready.

Takes some time to really learn the smoker and it is more involved than setting a thermometer but I've got this one figured out and I would put my product up against my uncles or BIL electric smokers any day. Although I never complain eating what they smoke either.

my opinion... electrics are easier, stick burners are better if you can master it.
 

6mm Remington

Active member
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
981
Location
Westen Montana
I have the Masterbuilt electric and love it also. I feel I made the right decision over getting the propane. At least for me anyway. I love the smoker and use it usually at the least once a week! I've made jerky, smoked salmon, beef brisket, rib-eyes, beef roast, pork ribs, macaroni and cheese, baked potatoes, pork belly, and more. Love it!
 

dirtclod Az.

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 24, 2018
Messages
1,750
Go Electric Use in camp with generator.Just bought a wood burning smoker.
Not fun At 110deg re-supplying Mesquite wood. 😎
 

zpooch

Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2018
Messages
71
My electric is too efficient and has a hard time making smoke at low temps when it is hot outside. Best to make summer sausage in the colder months but works great for everything else
 

sbhooper

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 7, 2012
Messages
3,693
Location
North Platte, Nebraska
I have a Cabela's propane and the only problem is if the wind is blowing. It is difficult to regulate if there is a breeze. My buddy has an electric and gets along much better with it.
 

hank4elk

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2015
Messages
3,500
Location
SW NM
I had a Masterbuilt for years & really liked it. Lost it somehow moving 10 yrs ago. Built a few from old reefers or wood & hotplates w/CIskillet burner.
Neighbor loaned me his LilSmokey elec. as he never used it & it is ok if no wind is blowing. I have built wind breaks to try & smoke pastrami to no avail...lol
Been using a gas grill with burner box but it is usually too hot or not hot from wind loss. Hate grilling on gas except it is ez & quick...
I'll be moving the fire ring to sheltered location for grilling soon & getting another Masterbuilt.
 

magnum44270

Active member
Joined
Apr 3, 2019
Messages
148
electric is easy, set it and forget it. no checking temps or worring about ups and downs.. flavor is not as good as something with a real flame
 

Amand

Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2010
Messages
90
Location
Kaneohe, HI
I use the masterbuilt electric and have had good success with it.

The biggest improvement I made though was using an Amazen smoker burning pellets and using a mailbox mod for it. It gets your smoke away from the heating element for the electric and gives a consistent smoke for up to about 10-12 hours without having to mess with it
 

huntin24/7

Active member
Joined
Jul 25, 2010
Messages
417
Location
Eastern Montana
I cant compare the two, but I have a Bradley electric with the automatic feed bisquettes. I really like it. I use it for smoking salami, jerkey, fish, etc. I like the cold smoke option for cheese and for cold smoking a steak before grilling it.
 

bushman13

Active member
Joined
Jun 11, 2018
Messages
405
Electric will always give a great finished product because consistency in temp is the key to smoking. But let's be honest. If you don't like collecting your favorite wood, tending a fire, standing in the yard with a beer, then what are you really doing?
 

WyoDoug

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 8, 2019
Messages
801
Location
Cheyenne, Wyoming
I have made sausages and jerky a long time. I do not recommend or like electric ones. They draw on your utility bill plus they just don't regulate as well as gas. Avoid glass doors. I have a propane smoker and I don't always smoke. Sometimes I use it like an oven to cook summer sausage and that.

If this is your first time, do not over do the smoke. It will give your product an acidic taste. You want just enough smoke to do the job. You also need a meat thermometer to go with it and I recommend one you can put the probe into the meat and leave the digital unit on the outside of the smoker.

If you are actually smoking meat and that, you need a sausage picker to poke tiny holes in your sausage and jerky for the smoke to penetrate. Chemical smoke is not recommended. I hate that stuff. It DOES NOT taste like smoke and I lack any trust in it really being safe to use.
 
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