You really don’t need much to smoke meat, but here is a list of some things that everyone should have in their arsenal. These are all things that I personally use and would highly recommend picking up!
Bluetooth Meat Thermometer
This is one item I can’t go without. In fact once you get a Bluetooth thermometer you will never go back. These thermometers are must, as it allows you to monitor your temps, set alarms, and more all from your phone!
While smokers have built in thermometers, they typically aren’t very accurate. This is because they are typically situated in the lid and the temperature there will be different than the temperature at grate level where your food is cooking.
A Bluetooth thermometer can be used at grate level to give you a more accurate reading of your smoker’s temperature. Plus you can monitor the temperature from your phone and set alerts for when your smoker drops too low.
Additionally, these probes are great for monitoring the temperature of your meat. Simply stick it in your meat, set an alarm for when it reaches your desired temperature, and wait. No more guessing when your meat is done!
There are many options available on the market. I personally have only used the chugod because it was more affordable; however, there are plenty of other great options.
Fire Starters Cubes/Tumbleweeds
Fire starter cubes or tumbleweed starters, are cheap and easy way to get your charcoal lit. These starters will burn long and when paired with a chimney starter can have your charcoal ready in 10 to 15 minutes.
Charcoal can be difficult to light and you should NEVER use matchlight charcoal (unless you like your food with a hint of chemical taste). When first starting out, I had a hell of a time getting my fires lit. I would soak paper towels in oil or use newspaper, but neither option was easy.
Once I started using fire starters, my life was forever changed. They are so easy to use and makes getting your fire started a breeze. Plus they are very cheap! Trust me, pick up a pack and thank me later!
I personally prefer the tumbleweed starters of the cubes. They are more natural than the cubes and I always try to use natural products.
Charcoal Chimney Starter
Charcoal can be hard to get lit and we never recommend using match light charcoal or any charcoal with added chemicals. The solution, a chimney starter!
They are cheap, widely available, and will make getting your fire started soo much easier. Simply place your charcoal in the chimney, and light a fire starter underneath. The holes in the side of the chimney add just the right amount of air to efficiently light your charcoal.
After about 15 minutes, your charcoal will be ready to throw on the smoker!