BBQ Smoker Experts | Are A Smoker & BBQ The Same? | Buff BBQ

Are a smoker and a BBQ the same?

Getting to the point


No. A traditional BBQ and a BBQ smoker are 2 very different things. 

A traditional BBQ gets up to high temperatures very quickly, therefore, it cooks meat a lot quicker. A BBQ smoker is used for low and slow cooks, which means it cooks at a lot lower temperature for a longer period of time. Traditional BBQs used to win when it came to convenience, but with the new 8-in-1 smokers from Pit Boss and Louisiana Grills, that's no longer the case. You can now combine all the features of your traditional BBQ with the benefits of a BBQ smoker. If you're stuck making a choice between a traditional BBQ and a BBQ smoker, there's really no need. Get everything all in one and achieve that amazing flavour that only a BBQ smoker can offer. 

The full range of Pit Boss and Louisiana Grills BBQ smokers are available at Buff BBQ.


A bit more information


As with many industries and retail sectors, we often find that implements and methods of outdoor cooking are used interchangeably, with the word “BBQ” used to describe everything. Does that mean they are all designed to do the same? No, and that’s why our aim at Buff BBQ is as much about educating people on the benefits of pellet smokers and authentic flavour as it is about providing the tools in which to achieve the best meat.

The BBQ smoker UK market is ever-expanding as we recognise and seek to replicate that all-American BBQ dream of smoky ribs full of intense flavour – but achieving that in our temperamental climate is not always easy. That is, until Pit Boss and Louisiana Grills came along. They have launched their own ranges of pellet smoker which take the best from both cooking styles and fuse them together into a champion of authentically smoked BBQ meat.

But before we delve into the pellet smoker and its unique place in the market, first let’s separate the two products and explore their individual benefits.

What is a BBQ and how does it work?

Whether it be a gas grill, a charcoal BBQ or a woodfired flame, a BBQ takes the very basic design of a grill and adequate fuel, and places the meat on the top – cooking it atop its fuel source for a charred outer finish and an evenly cooked centre.

The different kinds of BBQ each have their own positive and negative points. The gas grill provides optimum control but more of an oven-cooked experience overall, while the use of charcoal and direct flames achieves a tasty chargrilled flavour but needs attending to fairly consistently and rarely provides an even cook across the whole piece of meat.

In essence, a BBQ is typically regarded as restricted to the summertime. Designed to elevate our outside cooking experiences, it takes the concept derived from our ancestors of cooking on an open flame and slowly develops that into something modern which we recognise and can control with our own tools – both manual and digital.

What we often find in the UK market is that gas grills are particularly popular for the level of control which the user gets, taking away the sole reliance on good weather, and instead creating a level cooking environment which the user controls digitally. Not only does this make gas grills ideal for entertaining and cooking for the masses, but it also means they can be used throughout the year – as the grill can simply be closed and adjusted to alter the inside temperature regardless of what is happening outside it.

What is a pellet smoker and how does it work?

Despite the control and simplicity of a traditional BBQ, there is one primary drawback of these – and that is the flavour which slowly becomes lost throughout the cooking process.

Look at it this way. Most BBQs rely on cooking the meat over an open or direct flame, which means the cooking cavity needs to be open to the elements to provide that all important oxygen needed for the fire. As soon as you open the lid to stoke the fire and draw in more oxygen, all that flavour and smoke becomes lost to the air around you – removing it from the meat for good, and reducing the intensity of flavour which you end up with.

If it’s control you’re looking for, the team at Louisiana Grills have got you covered. With a unique and innovative solution to remote control, these smokers take a built-in WiFi connection and allow the grill itself to be controlled via a smartphone app. Not only does this put the control firmly in your hands, but it allows you to monitor everything from temperature to cooking time without every having to open the BBQ lid and expose it to the surrounding air.

Meanwhile, the pellet smokers on offer through Pit Boss take the idea of smoking meat and wrap it up in one user friendly cooking experience. Not only do they use direct smoking methods, but they also allow you to alter the exposure of the cooking plate to the heat source; altering the cooking process and the flavour gained.

The benefits of a pellet smoker are wide-ranging and simple:

  • The pellet smoker not only captures, but truly enhances the smoky flavour of the meat, for the perfect finish every time
  • Control is easy through the modern digitalisation of the grills and their exterior controls
  • The pellet smoker draws on its own unique fuel source, which can either be exposed to the meat or separated, cooking the meat over the flame itself or else by the transference of heat and smoke
  • Pellet smokers can be controlled from the outside without having to open the grill itself, which means that it can be used in all weather conditions throughout the year – with no impact from rain, wind or snow. A pellet smoker is not just perfect for your summer garden parties but also for your Sunday roasts, your midweek dinners, and your heated leftovers
  • Pellets are now available in a variety of flavours, all made with 100% hardwood for a sustainable and effective cooking experience

The pellet smoker vs. the standard BBQ

If you haven’t already grasped the concept, it is fair to say that by origin, the pellet smoker and BBQ are very different in terms of their design and functionality. But with both Louisiana Grills and Pit Boss bringing a range of grills to the market which boast 8 different cooking methods in 1 grill (including smoking, roasting, baking and grilling), it seems that the BBQ smoker UK market is about to boom with new life; taking the very best bits of both the standard BBQ and the pellet smoker and pulling them together into one.




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