Cold Smoker Can For Gas Grills -Tutorial & Pics
When I first became a member here, I lived in an apartment and all my smoker/charcoal grills were at my GF's. I wanted to find a better solution to those crappy smoker boxes and aluminum foil packets that would infuse enough smoke in meat that you would actually taste.
What I came up with was this: A soup can with holes punched in the bottom with a small grate at the bottom. I took two lit briquets, placed them on the bottom grate, then filled the can with chips. Then, I placed the can on the top grate of my grill, added the meat. I typically got about 1/2 hour of solid smoke, which for smaller cuts worked fine. For larger cuts, I would refill the can for another round of smoke. Now here's what's important: the can worked best(at least on my grill) when the gas was turned off. If I had the gas on, the oxygen would reduce and the briquets would burn out. So essentially, this was a cold smoking device. Once the smoking was finished, I turned on the gas grill and finished the meat up with direct or indirect heat, depending on what kind of meat I was working with.
I don't use the can anymore, but for those who only have gas grills, or want to get some smoke flavor on your meat without firing up the smoker or charcoal grill, it works quite well. Depending on what kind of meat, I have used oak, hickory, cherry, pecan, maple, and apple chips.
Before any grilling or smoking takes place, it is important to always have a cold beverage handy:
Top view of can:
Can in action with meat on top grate:
Here's a sample of finished product:
clever... wish i thought of that i just put my wood right on the grill top and let it catchfire and smoke on its own.. made good mess but got job done
Nice! Gotta do, what ya gotta do!
Moose - great use of simple solution. Kinda like what we all used to do before they sold the charcoal chimney lighters. #10 can did the job.
BUT one word of caution. The can you show in the pix is obviously of vintage variety. So many of the cans on the market today have an interior liner which contains plastic, and part of that plastic is BTU. While the jury is still out on the verdict as to whether it leeches into our food - if you were to heat it up on the grill, the stuff would possibly incinerate and become one with the smoke. I'm sure the levels would be small - but over time, not a good thing.
So - if you use this great simple idea make sure you clean out the can or use one that isn't treated on the inside.
Man-oh-man - so many things to worry about these days!
an other alternative is a pistol smoker. mine gives 3hrs of smoke. no fuss no mess
works like a champ.
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