Review: Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker

Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker

The Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker is a cheap vertical smoker with a lot of qualities to it. It is one of the best propane smokers of this type you can get for under $200, and this review will let you know why. The problem with smokers that come at this price is that the manufacturers have to cut corners, corners which you will have to fix with some DIY. In this case however, the quality/price ratio is extremely good.

With the Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker you get four 14×14 inch racks. That’s a lot of space and these racks can be pulled out, which means you’ll have plenty of access to your meats. You also get a separate door for both the water and the chip pan, which means that you won’t lose any heat while feeding either of the two. Another great thing is that this smoker is not a propane smoker exclusively, you can use charcoal to cook in it too. So if you prefer charcoal over propane, but you still find this smoker attractive, you can go for it. As for mobility, this smoker comes with wheels on its two back wheels. It also has insulated handles, but it would probably be a bad idea to move it around while you’re cooking with it.

A feature you should look for when buying smokers in this price range is insulated doors. Sure you can insulate the doors yourself too, but why bother when you can get a smoker that comes with them already. The insulation provides a pretty good defense against leaking, with the temperature staying within 10 degrees F of the temperature you set it to. And you can go to temperatures of up to 450 degrees F if you ever want to.

The grill also comes with a thermometer which is actually pretty good, as in you won’t have to replace it, unless you are looking for a very precise temperature. The fault range of the thermometer is about 10 degrees, which in most cases is not that bad.

Finally, assembling this grill and setting it up is a very simple process with clear English instructions. Assembly takes less than an hour at a relaxed pace, and there are Spanish instructions in the manual as well.

All in all, the Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker is a very good smoker for its price. Like I’ve said, smokers below $200 tend to have a lot of faulty parts that will require extra money, time and energy on your part to fix. In this case you get what you pay for. There’re still things which you could improve, sure, like the water pan by replacing it with a bigger $1 aluminum pan, but these small adjustments are more options than necessities. It uses fuel pretty efficiently, and you can expect this smoker to last you for a good number of years.

Review: Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Electric Smokehouse Smoker

Sometimes getting into smoking is somewhat intimidating. Well, the Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Electric Smokehouse Smoker is a pretty good first step. It can be found at prices of around $200 while it’s on sale, and it comes with a lot of well built features. This does not mean that experts need to look elsewhere. It is a very solid product that will help you smoke meat easily, with little technical difficulties and at a very affordable price.

So what does the Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Electric Smokehouse Smoker have going for it. Well first of all, we all know how important insulation is when looking for smokers at this price range. This smoker shines in this department. The outside temperature does not even make the temperature inside the grill flinch. So you get nice cooks without having to worry too much about leaking and constantly changing the temperature.

Then you have the economic factor. Since it runs on electricity, you save a lot of money that would otherwise go on propane, charcoal or wood. Even the wood you’ll use for smoking is not needed in huge quantities. This means that with this grill you can smoke often, or in small batches. As for capacity, the Masterbuilt 20070910 can hold over 30 pounds of meat at a time on its four racks. Now for a $200 a pop, this grill packs a lot of punch.

It also comes with a digital thermometer on the inside. You probably know how important temperature control is when smoking, and with this little addition, all you have to do is set the temperature you want the smoker to keep, and from then on out you simply feed the machine wood and check the temperature of the meats (this time you’ll have to bring the thermometer).

As for the cons, there are some things you have to be aware of when buying the Masterbuilt 20070910. The first thing you should keep in mind is that it only goes up to 275 degrees F, which is a decent temperature for cooking most meats, but poultry might give you some problems. The other thing is that it needs to be plugged directly into an outlet, so you will need to figure out where you will put it, or place an outlet on the outside of your house. You can use an extension cord, but then you might suffer from power fluctuations and subsequently temperature fluctuations inside of your grill.

So how does all of this add up? Well, it adds up to a pretty fine piece of equipment. The main flaw you’ll find with it is that it needs to be plugged directly into an outlet. If you can find a way around that you have a very strong piece of equipment on your hands at a very affordable price, with a lot of great features and great customer support waiting to help you with any and all problems you might encounter.

Essential Accessories for the BBQ Chef

So you’ve managed to get your hands on the smoker of your dreams, and now you’re wondering what to do with it. Well, before you start grilling, you should have several essential tools at your disposal. These accessories are indispensable if you ever want to use that bad boy, and once you get them, they will be handy to you for the whole span of your career as a BBQ chef.

Let’s start off with some of the basics. You’ll need a spatula. This is good for anything and everything that can go in your smoker. You can use it for veggies or meat, it’s up to you. But make sure you have one, and please make sure it’s metal. Then a pair of thongs is always a good thing to have. You can use it to flip meat or corn, and depending on the size of your smoker you might want to get longer or shorter ones.

Now, you also need tools to clean your grill. You will need to get a grill brush. This is essential, because your food will suffer if your grill is dirty. Make sure to use it after every cooking session while the grill is still hot for maximum efficiency. You can find brushes like this that have a replaceable head so keep an eye out.

A very different type of brush is the sauce brush. This one is not used for scrubbing, it’s used for painting the meat with sauce. This brush is great for applying an even coat on your meats and ensuring the highest quality for your BBQ.

Make sure you also have a good pair of grill gloves, to handle big chunks of meat (if you plan on doing that), and a good set of knives, for obvious reasons. From trimming to slicing, a good set of knives will make your life way easier.

And finally, make sure that you get your hands on good thermometers. There are two types: one that tells the temperature inside of your smoker, and one that tells the internal temperature of the meat. Getting both is a pretty good idea, but if you can’t do that for whatever reason, go for the thermometer that tells you the temperature inside the meat. And go for thermometers that have very low response times. The best can take the temperature in three seconds. This way you ensure that you do not lose too much heat when checking on your meat.

These are the most essential tools any BBQ chef will need. Without them nothing would ever get done. And even if someone would risk using their fingers to handle the really hot meat and would rip the meat with their bare hands, it doesn’t mean it would get done very well. We all know that grilling is manly, but, come on, it’s not that manly.

Types of Wood For Your Smoker

Smoking BBQ is a process of cooking meat using smoke. It is an old process, and in the olden days logs were burned until they turned into embers, and the smoke they emanated was what used to cook the meat, and give it flavor. But when using logs to smoke, temperature control is a very delicate art, so it was a method of cooking reserved only for the masters of the craft. Today, smokers come with a two part mechanism: the heating, which can be electric, gas or charcoal, and the smoking, which usually comes from hardwood.

Hardwood is the most commonly used type of wood in this process. Nut woods and fruit woods are included in this category, while softwoods, like fir, pine or redwood tend to be avoided, because they burn fast and leave an unpleasant flavor. Hardwood, on the other hand, or more specifically dried hardwood, has more minerals than softwood, and it burns slower, while giving the meat a much better flavoring.

Hardwood comes in many different forms. One of them is the log, which we’ve already covered, but in case you want to use logs, just remember that they have to be turned to ember before they are any good to you. Then you have chunks. Chunks can be anywhere from the size of an egg to the size of your fist. They burn slowly and two medium sized chunks can provide smoke for a whole lot of food. They are easy to find and they are one of the most popular form of wood used for smoking. Chips are like the cousin of the chunks, or better yet their sidekick if you’d prefer. They are also very easy to get a hold of, but they are good for short cooks, because they burn pretty fast. For longer cooks it is better to just go with chunks.

Pellets are also a main contender, especially since there are cookers using pellets both as a heat source and as a smoke source. Pellets are rods made of compressed sawdust, without any adhesive or glues (if they are food grade pellets, avoid any other). Cookers that use pellets are very versatile because you can control the temperature and the environment that the meat is cooked in by feeding the pellets as you deem appropriate. You can also find specific flavors straight from manufacturers. You can find Jack Daniel’s flavored pellets made from the charcoal and oak from the barrels that held the whiskey.

Pellet chunks are chunks of sawdust compressed until they are shaped like a brick. These also come in a variety of flavors and they are not a bad choice at all. On the same note, you have bisquettes, small puck-shaped chunks of compressed sawdust. And while we’re at it, sawdust itself can be used for smoking, but it is rarely done so, because it burns very fast. There are some smaller smokers out there however that do use it.