As the author of a BBQ book, I get asked all the time… what’s the best BBQ smoker to buy? My answer usually leads them in the right direction and gives them a few places to start looking.
I usually tell people about one of the following bbq smokers…
Big Green Egg – this is an insulated vertical smoker. They start around $600 to $700 for the large model.
Traeger Pellet Smokers – This is a nice bbq smoker that burns wood pellets. The Lil’ tex starts around $695. The digital controls and oversize hopper are a little extra though.
Char-Broil Silver Smoker – This is a more affordable, smaller offset type smoker but it is well constructed and produces some great Q. They are $159 down at Home Depot.
Stumps Smoker – this is also an insulated vertical smoker with a gravity fed charcoal system. They start around $1600. best smoker pellets
Lang Smoker – This is a traditional offset type smoker. It is made of good thick metal but it is not insulated. This offset BBQ smoker is unique in that it has a metal plate that runs the full length of the smoker just below the meat grate. The smoke travels all the way to the other end of the smoker, over the meat, and out the smoke stack on the same side as the firebox. The Lang Model 60 starts at $2195.
Fast Eddy’s by Cookshack – This is a very nice pellet BBQ smoker with a vertical style. Used by many of the top BBQ competition teams. It is around $3295.
Southern Yankee – these are rotisserie bbq smokers and they have many models to choose from. They range from small pull behind rotisseries to large concession trailers. They start at $3750 and go up from there.
And… their final decision usually has to do with the following factors…
Price – the amount of money you have to spend on a BBQ smoker has a lot to do with your decision. I think the most bang for your buck is the Traeger Lil’ Tex BBQ smoker – especially for the back yard BBQer. Although, many BBQ teams use these too. Whatever you do, don’t go down to WalMart or Home Depot and buy one of those small offset smokers for $300 or less. They are made out of very thin metal and the fireboxes do not ventilate well. You’ll have trouble producing good BBQ on those things.