If you are a chef and looking for some great advice about buying a smoker, then I am here to help. I have been cooking with smokers since 1989 (when I was 16 years old) so I know what it takes to get good food from a smoker.
I have spent hundreds of hours researching and testing different smokers. I will give you my top picks right now. This is not an all-inclusive list but the best pellet smokers out there that I personally use.
When it comes to choosing a best pellet smoker, or any other type of smoker, you need to look at how many people will be using the smoker and what kind of meals they will be making. You also want to consider how much time you will be able to devote to maintaining your smoker.
BBQ Pit Boss Pellet Grill
This is hands down the best pellet smoker in its class. The Pit Boss is designed by two famous chefs, John Ash and Paul Kirk. They were both formerly owners of the famous barbecue restaurant, Big Bob Gibson’s Barbecue in Decatur, Alabama. They wanted to create a more portable smoker that would produce better smoke flavor than traditional charcoal pits. Their goal was to make sure this smoker could cook a meal for up to 12 people while still being easy enough to maintain.
The Pit Boss has a very unique design. It features a built-in grate which allows you to directly control the heat. There are no knobs or dials to change the temperature. The Pit Boss uses infrared heating technology, which means it is completely safe to use in wooded areas where open flame might pose a fire hazard.
The Pit Boss is constructed entirely from stainless steel meaning it is rust proof and extremely durable. It can withstand temperatures up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. When you purchase the Pit Boss you receive a large aluminum drip pan to catch grease drippings and a lid lifter tool to remove the lid easily without having to bend over and lift it up with one hand.
BGE Gourmet Deluxe Pellet Grill
If you are going to spend $200+ on a smoker then you should absolutely buy the BGE Gourmet Deluxe. This smoker features a number of upgrades that make it stand out from the rest. The first thing you notice when you pick up the Gourmet Deluxe is that it is built from heavy gauge metal. There is nothing flimsy about this smoker. The second thing you will notice is that this smoker is one of the most versatile smokers on the market because it works well as a countertop smoker, a table top smoker and even a deep fryer. It can do it all!
Another feature that makes the Gourmet Deluxe really stand out is that it is equipped with a digital controller that allows you to precisely regulate the temperature. There are six preset temperature settings plus a “custom” setting. To add fuel to the Gourmet Deluxe you must screw in the fuel cartridge. This is made especially for the Gourmet Deluxe so it won’t work with other brands of gas grills. The Gourmet Deluxe is constructed from 100% stainless steel so it is sturdy and rust resistant. This is a serious smoker that deserves a spot on your shopping list if you are planning on spending $200 or more in your search for a new smoker.
Dakota Digital Indoor Grill Pellet Grill
This is another popular smoker among chefs and outdoor enthusiasts alike. The Dakota Digital indoor grill is available in charcoal or propane versions. One thing that sets this smoker apart from others is that you can adjust the temperature anywhere between 225 and 600 degrees Fahrenheit. The Dakota Digital has four presets for temperature ranging from low to high. You can also set the Dakota Digital to its “Custom” setting which allows you to manually select the desired temperature.
On the front of the Dakota Digital, you will see a digital display. This display shows you the current temperature and also lets you keep track of things like the total weight of the meat you are cooking and the amount of time left in the cooking process. In addition to the display you will also find a large, bright LED light that illuminates the interior of the cooker.
Sawyer Pro Series Pellet Grill
The Sawyer Pro series pellet grill is a step up from the average pellet grill. Not only does the Pro Series offer a wide range of temperature settings, it also comes with a built-in thermometer and digital temperature readout. The Pro Series is not a cheap smoker though. It sells for around $400 dollars and you don’t get any extras like a grill rack and an ash catcher unless you buy a separate accessory kit. You also get a slightly smaller grill than the Pit Boss and the Gourmet Deluxe.
The Pro Series is an excellent choice for anyone who wants an inexpensive pellet grill that doesn’t skimp on quality. It is built from stainless steel which is both rust and corrosion proof. The Pro Series also features a removable bottom tray with a side door to allow you to safely remove the meat after grilling.
Weslo Outdoor Pellet Grill
The Weslo Outdoor pellet grill is ideal for small spaces. It is compact enough to fit inside your car or RV and light enough to carry around with you wherever you go. The Weslo Outdoor offers a huge range of temperature settings including a “Hot & Cold” mode. You can select from three different cooking modes: direct flame, indirect flame and convection flow. Even though the Weslo Outdoor is designed primarily for outdoor cooking, it can also be used indoors.
The Weslo Outdoor is made of 100% stainless steel. That means it is free from rust and corrosion. However, the Weslo Outdoor has a few drawbacks. It isn’t as powerful as other models on this list and it doesn’t come with a built-in ash catcher. Other than that, the Weslo Outdoor is a perfect option for someone who needs a pellet grill that is simple, reliable and affordable.