Find our electric smoker reviews, comparison charts and buying guides to help you buy the best electric smoker for quick yet flavorsome food.
Best Electric Smoker for Professionals
Masterbuilt 20077615: This smoker is the top-rated smoker in this roundup and far outdoes the competition by combining precise thermostatic heat control with its inverted flame firebox. It draws power directly from its real wood fire burner and gives you full control of the whole BBQ experience, resulting in clean, natural smoke from hardwood logs, and meats with a light, sweet, smoky flavor.
Best Smoker for Beginners
Masterbuilt 20077515: Need a smoker on a budget? You’ll love the Masterbuilt 20077515. The smoker has a fully insulated body, is sturdily built from stainless steel sheeting yet lightweight and thus easy to move around using the rear wheels. It also has a convenient wood chip loading system and the capacity of the smoker is 12 whole chickens, 4 pork butts, 24 hamburgers, 48 sausages, 2 whole turkeys or 4 racks of ribs
- Electric Smoker Comparison Chart
- Best Electric Smoker
- Budget Electric Smoker
- Electric Smoker Buying Guide
A smoker works by keeping a low cooking temperature for long time periods and produces smoke, which it spreads around the meat so that it can be readily absorbed. While you can also use a regular gas or charcoal grill to smoke your meat, they’re mainly designed to reach very high temperatures and have a hard time capturing smoke, so that foods have a tendency to dry out.
Charcoal grills, however, are pretty good at smoking and can be used for smoking if they’re large enough. The problem is that most charcoal grills are small and inefficient for smoking. Yup, investing in the best propane smoker is a good idea but what if you run out of gas midway your cook? That’s where electric smokers steal the show.
In this article, we take a look at some of the best available electric smokers that will go a long way towards giving you the true taste of authentic barbecued meats, fowl, and fish. We provide a comprehensive roundup and recommend the best rated and value-for-money smokers, using different types of fuel types and wood flavorings.
Best Electric Smoker for 2020
Our #1 Pick
Masterbuilt 20077615 30″ Digital Electric Smoker with Window
The high-tech Masterbuilt 20077615 30″ Digital Electric Smoker with Window features a handy remote to control temperature, time, food light, on/off and monitor meat temperature with the built-in meat thermometer probe. Also comes with cover and recipes!
Smokin-It Model #1 Electric Smoker
NSF Certified for restaurant use, the Smokin-It Model #1 Electric Smoker features a classic stainless steel design and 400 watt heating element.
Best For Beginners
Masterbuilt 20077515 30″ Front Controller Electric Smoker with Window
Advanced Masterbuilt 20077515 30″ Front Controller Electric Smoker with Window features a handy remote to control temperature, time, food light, on/off and monitor meat temperature with a front control display that's easy to read in sunlight.
Bradley Digital 6-Rack Smoker
A great larger-capacity option, Bradley Digital 6-Rack Smoker features a removable ash catcher for for quick, hassle-free cleanup and offers 9 different flavors of hardwood bisquettes for use with this smoker.
Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker, 725 Square Inch
With a glass door for easy viewing, the Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker features and advanced control panel with easy to read blue LED display, as well as a smoke-tight seal and removable food thermometer.
In-Depth Electric Smoker Reviews
The Masterbuilt 20077615 30-inch is a very convenient and easy to use premium smoker that even the most clueless beginner can master, but doesn’t skimp on the features that seasoned barbecue pros expect, making this smoker our top pick for 2020.
It’s pretty much a plug-in and forget it appliance and there’s no messing around involved with propane or charcoal. The digital controls and RF remote lets you control its multiple functions, and Masterbuilt’s reputation as an electric smoker manufacturer make it an ideal smoker pick.
The controls give you full control over temperature, time of smoking, and will turn the smoker off when the food is done. It’s pretty big, at 730 square inches of cooking space, and it should be good to go for large gatherings. It comes with four internal dishwasher safe chrome-coated grates that are ideal for ribs and any other meat cut.
The smoker has a powerful 800-watt heating element, full foam insulation and a big front window that lets you check at-a-glance on how your food is progressing.
The built-in meat probe thermometer guarantees perfect meat temperature and consistent flavor. A bright blue LED display shows temperature and cooking times and is easy to read in bright sunlight.
This Masterbuilt smoker is relatively lightweight and easy to move around with its rear wheels, is sturdily built, and heats up pretty fast. It comes with a nicely built wood chip loading system, and according to the manufacturer, 4 cups of wood chips will last for 5+ hours of smoking.
Some of the included items are:
- Smooth wood chip loading system
- Front access drip pan
- Meat probe thermometer
- Rear wheels and handle for easily moving the smoker
- Smoker cover and recipe CD
This 18 gauge non-magnetic stainless-steel, ruggedly built mid-range smoker is extremely easy to use and very well insulated with fiberglass so your meats will get the perfect smoky flavor even if it’s cold outside.
It has plenty of room in its interior for your food, considering its size and portability, and will slow cook and smoke up to 22 pounds of meat or seafood. This is a professional-level smoker and is often used in restaurants and BBQ joints.
The Smokin-It #1 model has a powerful 400-watt electric heating element with LED indicator lights and an efficient smokebox that uses as little as a couple of chunks of wood per smoking session.
It has built-in temperature control using a rheostat to easily regulate cooking temperatures and times.
With its handles on both sides for easy lifting and four rubber castor wheels and drip pan on the bottom, the smoker is easy to move around and to clean up. It also comes with three stainless steel grilling racks and some hickory chips are included with the smoker when you buy it so that you can get started right off the bat.
The smoker’s heating element is easy to replace if you ever wear it out and it has a 12-foot power cord with a built-in hanger that gives you plenty of leeways when it comes to where you place your smoker. And you get a pretty solid warranty of three years on parts and labor.
You can’t cold smoke with Model #1 as is but with the addition of an optional cold smoke plate you’ll be able to prepare delicious smoked cheese or other cold smoked delicacies.
Some of the included items are:
- Four heavy-duty 3-inch diameter caster that needs to be attached
- Three stainless steel grilling racks, with room for four, rack size is 12″ x 13″, racks are 2-1/2″ apart
- Smokebox with a drip pan that slides under the unit
- Rheostat for temperature control: 100-250 degrees F
- Hickory wood sample
- 400-watt heating element and indicator light, at 4 amps and 120-volts
- Fiberglass insulation
- Electric power cord hangers for mounting on the back panel of the smoker, made from stainless steel with pre-drilled holes and screws provided for installation
- NSF certified
Like other Masterbuilt electric smokers, we review in this roundup, the 20077515 model is perfectly adapted to the most exacting demands of experienced barbecuers and can be easily mastered by complete newbies. The smoker is very similar to the top-of-line 20077615 model for which you’d be shelling out quite a bit more cash while retaining the front view window, digital controls, and most other premium features.
It also has other useful high-end amenities like the blue LED display, where you’ll easily see times and temperatures at-a-glance, even in direct sunlight, and 731 square inches of total cooking space in four dishwasher-safe chrome racks.
Other great features included in this smoker are its remote that lets you access digital controls at a distance, regulating the inside temperature of the smokehouse and a built-in meat probe thermometer for monitoring the meat’s temperature when it’s still cooking.
It has a front access drip pan with a drip deflector to keep things from getting messy and keep the smoker clean. The front door locks tight and has a viewing window including an inner liner that helps to insulate and locks in the smoky flavor.
You can regulate the amount of smoky flavor that your foods will get with the wood chip loading system that you can just set and forget through the digital controls. And the smoker is light and easy to move around with its rear wheels and handle.
According to the manufacturer, the capacity of the smoker is for: 12 whole chickens, 4 pork butts, 24 hamburgers, 48 sausages, 2 whole turkeys or 4 racks of ribs.
Some of the included items are:
- Smooth wood chip loading system
- Front access drip pan with drip deflector
- Meat probe thermometer
- Rear wheels and handle
This Bradley smoker is ideal if you’re looking for an easy to use mid-range model that will cook a lot of food in one go. It’s loaded with digital technology that makes it so simple, you can just set up the capacious six racks, set the amount of smoke you want, and let it go on its own for eight hours without refueling.
The advanced digital interface includes a panel with large, bright LEDs that continuously updates information on smoke, temperature and time. You can monitor the automation of the smoking process and adjust settings as needed.
With the Bradley smoker, you have your choice of hot or cold smoking as well as roasting. It has a separate smoke and oven burners to give you full control over both smoking and cooking times and temperatures.
This model uses a unique smoke without a fire system that doesn’t need refueling and slow smokes for up to eight hours, resulting in consistently great tasting meats. The interior volume is huge and has great heat retention with full insulation thanks to the sturdy stainless steel construction.
Some of the included items are:
- Six cooking racks
- Four removable racks
- Internal thermostat
This Char-Broil Deluxe Digital Electric Smoker is a high-quality product from a respected manufacturer at a bargain-basement price.
It’s another one of our top budgets picks because for a budget-priced smoker price you’re basically getting a mid-range smoker that’s apt for both beginners and pros but at little more than half the price of a mid-range Masterbuilt with comparable features but without the front view window.
Since this smoker comes with a window too you can watch the food smoke like a hawk. You should note, that with this smoker you get full digital control of heating and smoking times and temperatures. This ensures full reproducibility, so you’ll get the same excellent results every time.
Apart from that, it also has digital controls that let you control its multiple functions. With these, you have full control over temperature, time of smoking, and your smoker automatically gets turned off when the food is done. It comes with four internal dishwasher safe chrome-coated grates that are ideal for ribs and any other meat cut.
The smoker has a fully insulated body, is lightweight and easy to move around using its rear wheels. It’s sturdily built and heats up pretty fast. It comes with a nicely built wood chip loading system. According to the manufacturer, the capacity of the smoker is for: 6 whole chickens, 4 pork butts, 24 hamburgers, 64 sausages, or 8 racks of ribs.
This mid-range smoker from Smoke Hollow goes a long way towards automating the smoking process for your meats. It consistently produces great tasting smoked food, with full digital control, including a Bluetooth-connected app that can be used with your smartphone.
It’s a roomy 40-inch cabinet with dual, separate heating elements for roasting and smoking, which will result in even and fast cooking and smoking.
The model has a unique cold smoking setting for smoking cheeses and fish without risking overcooking which could be a welcome change of pace from the usual meats. Its fast smoke mode gets your wood chips smoking in fifteen minutes and your meats up and smoking in record time.
The large cabinet comes with a generous-sized front window while maintaining excellent heat retention and insulation, while the 4.5 cubic feet of cooking volume is larger than of any of the smokers in this roundup.
The cooker also integrates a meat probe and external access to the wood chip tray and the water deposit above it, so that there’s no need to ever open the front door until the meat’s fully cooked. This way there are no temperature fluctuations in the main chamber.
A large capacity wood chip drawer is built-in with easy access for the unlikely case that you need to add chips. The smoker has wheels and is easy to move around.
This budget low-temperature smoker from famed manufacturer Big Chief isn’t meant for large cuts of meat but it does a great job on things like beef jerky, franks, cheese or fish. If your smoking ambitions aren’t large then you can’t go wrong with this excellent, though underpowered smoker.
Don’t let the “Big” moniker fool you, or the fact that Smokehouse also sells a Little Chief model. The Big Chief is a smallish electric smoker with an oversized front door, although it can smoke a lot of food considering its size, as it can hold up to 50 pounds in its 576 square inches of rack space. It has a single 450-watt heating element with a maximum temperature of 165-degrees F.
There are no digital or analog temperature adjustments included in this smoker, and unlike most of the other models in this roundup, it’s not really meant to be used as a stand-alone barbecue grill. You’d first need to use a dedicated grill to barbecue your ribs, steaks or chicken, and then stick them in the Big Chief for a while to add the smoke flavor.
The smoker also comes with a recipe/instruction booklet and includes a wood fuel bag with 1.75 pounds of chips and chunks. It has six chrome-plated grill shelves, a flavor fuel pan, and a drip pan that’s dishwasher safe. It includes a 2-year limited warranty.
What Smoker Should I Buy?
In this roundup, we’ve covered for you some of the best-dedicated smokers available so that you don’t have to settle for a plain grill which will definitely not give you the optimal BBQ experience.
You’ll see some of the most reputed smokers of different types, including electric smokers, pellet smokers, and wood smokers. After reading this you should be able to make your own informed decision and know the kind of investment in time and money you’d need to make to pick the right smoker for you.
All of the smokers in this roundup are box smokers or cabinet smokers, that is they are a box with heat emanating from the bottom and a chamber on top where the food gets cooked.
The difference between high quality and a low-end box generally lies in how well insulated it is, which is determined by the quality of the materials used (thin vs solid metal), the fittings on the door, and the presence of insulating coatings or layers.
Box smokers are either gas or electric-powered and contain a heating element or burner on the bottom with a place over it to hold wood chips, pellets or sticks. Over that, some shelving holds the food, that gets exposed to the heat and wood smoke, and the food just sits there smoldering.
Higher quality smokers are designed to hold a large amount of meat or other foods in a highly controlled environment. They will typically be heavily insulated, have a well-fitted airtight door, and a temperature management system that’s computer-controlled.