When it comes to smoking meat, a thermometer is an absolute necessary gadget to have. Smoking meat requires steady temperatures in your smoker over long periods of time. While most smokers come with built in gages, they are generally off. The best and easiest way to ensure you have a steady temperature in your smoker is by using a thermometer at grate level.
In addition to maintaining a steady internal temperature, thermometers are vital for knowing when your meat is done. All cuts of meat are different and will take different amounts of time to cook. Coupled with the long cooking times that come with smoking meat, a thermometer is the only way you can know when your meat is ready to come off.
When it comes to choosing a wireless meat thermometer, there are many options on the market. While many websites promote the expensive name brands like Thermopro, I fell in love with the Chugod wireless meat thermometer. First recommended by a friend, the Chugod is an affordable, simple to use, and extremely versatile meat thermometer!
What We Like About The Chugod Wireless Meat Thermometer.
Allows You To Plug In Up To 6 Probes
A lot of the meat thermometers on the market are limited to only a couple probes. I really like having the option to plug in up to 6 probes at once. This makes it very useful when you are smoking multiple pieces of meat. I am able to have a probe in each piece of meat, and a couple probes at different areas on the grate. I cant watch the temperature of each meat and the smoker itself all in one place!
Simple To Use
The Chugod has a very simple and clean design that makes it very user friendly. It is also entirely controlled from an free app you download which allows you to make adjustments easily. One thing I really love about this thermometer, is the minimal data presented on the screen. A lot of other thermometers have too much data flashing on the screen at once making it harder to understand. Chugod shows the current temperature and the set temperature of an individual probe. This makes it easy to get the information you need quickly.
Another great thing about the Chugod, is it can be controlled from your smartphone by downloading the accompanying free app. This is incredibly convenient as I can check my temperatures and control the presets from the comfort of my house! I have all the information I need at the palm of my hands. Not to mention the app allows you to do some pretty awesome things.
You can see above, the home screen of the app displays all your current temperatures. Each box represents an individual probe which can be modified for what you are cooking. The smaller temperatures underneath are temperatures you can preset. Once the temperature is reached, the app will alert you. For example, above you can see that probe 4 is currently 50° F and has a preset to ring me once it reaches 195°.
You can also create a temperature range, such as probe 6 in the above picture. Anytime the temperature falls out of that range it will alert you. This means you don’t have to constantly watch your smokers temperature. You can set it and forget it and the app will let you know when something is wrong. You can use a preset already created or you can create your own.
Before using the Chugod, I was using an instant read thermometer. I would go out to my smoker every 30 minutes and stick the thermometer in the side to measure the temperature of the smoker. I was also constantly taking the lid off the smoker to check the temperature of the meats. It was a huge pain in the butt. Now simple leave the probes in and let the app ring me when my temperatures are hit.
The probes and the unit itself are durable. I have put the probes through high heat and abuse and they have been able to withstand it. I have used the probes in the oven, on the grill, and in the smoker all with great success. The device also comes with a little kickstand that allows to to easily prop up on table or stand.
The device takes batteries but the battery life on it is insane. I have been using the Chugod meat thermometer a few times a week now for about 4 months and it has barely made a dent in the batter life of the unit.
Comes With A Hard Shell Case
The Chugod wireless meat thermometer comes in at the middle of pack. Sitting at $49.99, this is a quality unit for its price. There are cheaper options out there but you will sacrifice some of the cool features the Chugod has to offer. For what you get, we think this is a very fair price. You can find the Chugod here at Amazon.
What We Don’t Like About The Chugod Wireless Meat Thermometer.
Overall this is a solid unit but there are a few things I don’t particularly like:
- Bluetooth Range: While it is very convenient to be able to have everything on your phone, there is a limited range in which the app works. If you go out of range you phone will disconnect from the unit and alert you. The unit has a 100 ft. rage when you are inside and a 196 ft. range when you are outside. This isn’t a huge issue if you are sticking around the house, but don’t plan on leaving the house.
- Color Coded: The probes are not color coded like some of the other units on the market. This can make it confusing to remember which probe corresponds to which meat when using multiple probes at once. Where the probe plugs into the unit it is labeled, so you can still figure it out, it is just not as intuitive as some of the other options on the market.
- The Alarm Sound: It is high pitched, loud, fast, and borderline annoying; however, you will never have to worry about not hearing your alarm. The alarm doesn’t go off very often so it is manageable but it is still something to take into consideration.
- Only Comes With Two Probes: While the unit is able to hold up to 6 probes, the unit only comes with 2 probes. You have to purchase the other probes separately. You can buy either a 2 pack (Link to Amazon) for $18.99 or a 4 pack (Link to Amazon) for $28.96.
Overall, the Chugod wireless meat thermometer is a great option. It is affordable, durable, easy to use, and extremely convenient. This is the meat thermometer that I personally use whenever I smoke meat, grill, or bake!