BBQ Smoker Experts | Charcoal Smoker Vs Electric Smoker? – Buff BBQ

Should I buy a charcoal smoker or an electric smoker?

Getting to the point

The battle between charcoal and electric really translates into taste vs convenience, or at least it used to. Charcoal BBQ smokers are certainly a lot more labour intensive and require a higher level of skill and experience to ensure the mouth-watering result that makes the man hours worthwhile. Electric grills are a hell of a lot more convenient ,but either lack flavour or produce it artificially. 

 The solution for someone who wants it all -  a pellet BBQ smoker 

All the convenience of an electric BBQ smoker with the unbeatable flavour of charcoal. Pellet smokers allow you to set it and forget it, and now many of them come with WiFi and Bluetooth control. The 100% real wood pellets give you the same flavour as the traditional BBQ smoker method of whole wood logs, and the consistent heat throughout the cook means the quality of the cook will be competition worthy. There simply aren’t any downsides to a pellet smoker. 


A bit more detail 


The battle between charcoal and electric is one which has long been present within the BBQ smoker UK market, with buyers having to make key decisions around functionality and ease of use, authenticity, and overall flavour.

When it comes to the effectiveness of both kinds of BBQ smoker, the primary point for comparison is in the taste of the meat which you end up with – and under that premise, it seems that the charcoal smoker always wins. Achieve the truly smoky taste and infusion of flavour which can only be reached with really smoke rather than the fake electric kind.

However, that’s not to say that there isn’t a place for electric BBQ smokers on the market. They provide dependable temperature control, super easy user instructions, and little cleaning at the end.

As we say, the war between charcoal and electric smokers is one filled with various pros and cons – but who’s to say that either of these are truly the best option on the BBQ smoker UK market?

The benefits of charcoal

 Starting with the older method of the two, charcoal smokers are famous for providing the most natural and intense infusion of smoke and flavour into the meat. A charcoal BBQ smoker requires the lighting of the charcoal and maintenance of a fairly constant temperature – something which can be time consuming and pose somewhat of a challenge in more adverse weather conditions.

The general consensus seems to confirm that the charcoal BBQ smoker is somewhat confined to the summertime. Despite it providing the deepest and most authentic flavour, it is not necessarily something you will easily be able to use all year round.

Other benefits of a charcoal smoker include the experience of cooking over an open flame, the portability as the BBQ, which (when not filled with charcoal) is not generally too heavy, and the price, as they tend to cost less than other BBQ smokers.

The benefits of electric

 Another way of looking at an electric BBQ smoker is to compare it with a standard oven. With an easily adjustable thermostat which controls and influences the heat inside the smoker, electric smokers heat up the wood chips using internal heating rods – never burning the chips, but providing them with enough surrounding heat that they infuse the meat and cook it with a similar finish to meat cooked directly on burning wood.

An electric BBQ smoker is never going to achieve the same authentic smoky flavour of a charcoal grill, primarily because there isn’t any smoke produced. Despite being super easy to control and very quick to warm up, electric smokers are heavily dependent on an electric socket in order to work. This can cause challenges if you are looking to cook in a more remote outdoor area that doesn’t have access to electricity.

Other benefits of an electric smoker include the ease of cleaning at the end of the cooking session, the safety element (due to not flammable features or functions), the time saving method of lighting and cooking, the year-round usage, and the automatic temperature adjustment.

Is there something better?

 We’ve explored the pros and cons of both charcoal and electric smokers and to highlight a number of things you should consider before jumping into a decision about buying either one of these. But what if we told you there was a BBQ smoker on the market which combined the authentic flavour of a charcoal grill, with the ease and reliable functionality of an electric smoker – all contained within one stylishly designed device?

Pellet smoker

 The pellet smoker is something fairly new to the UK market, with only specific brands such as Pit Boss and Louisiana Grills harnessing its value and immense power as a portal to BBQ heaven. Built around the controlled burning of 100% natural hardwood pellets with a total of 8 different cooking methods available at your fingertips, a pellet smoker relies on that smoky infusion to cook the meat. This all takes place while you remain in control, as you can slide the cooking plate to expose the direct source of heat and sear over an open flame.

Remember those pros and cons we explored with the charcoal BBQ smoker? Well, with the pellet smokers heralded by Pit Boss, you can say hello to all those pros, while leaving behind any cons associated with limited seasonal use and time consuming preparation.

The pellet smokers offered by Pit Boss draw on a design which completely shields the burning pellets from the outside elements. Not only they can be burnt and used to cook all year round, but that also are contained in a manner which can be monitored and controlled with ease. In fact, the pellet smokers offered by Louisiana Grills take this one step further by giving users a convenient app and WiFi connectivity within the grill device, allowing it to be controlled from a distance using just your smartphone. This level of control mimics that offered by electric smokers, but without taking away from the authenticity of the flavour and cooking method.

In short, pellet smokers offer a modern solution which harnesses all the advantages of a charcoal smoker and an electric smoker, wrapped up into one market-leading BBQ machine. The range available at Buff BBQ includes products from both Pit Boss and Louisiana Grill, all boasting a 5-year warranty, affordable price point and high-quality effectiveness across a total of 8 different cooking methods. So, the next time you’re trying to decide between a charcoal smoker and an electric counterpart, it might be time to consider a pellet smoker. Promising great value, a high-end authentic smoky taste, incredible reliability and control, a pellet smoker makes outdoor cooking easy and fun – all year round.




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