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View Full Version : Ideas on a "micro" smoker


Bob in St. Louis
05-17-2013, 09:57 AM
Ok guys, y'all have hooked me on this whole smoking meat thing.
But sometimes dragging out, firing up, and cleaning up the 22.5 WSM is more work than it's worth for small amounts of food.

Here's my idea:

I was thinking about using a small cheap toaster oven as a "micro-smoker".
I could put a small cast iron "chip tray" (like you use on a gas grill and wanted smoke flavor) directly on top of the element. Either that, or use a handful of chips rolled up in a ball of aluminum foil with some holes poked in it.

This way, I can make a fattie, a handful of MOINKS, some ABT's or whatever without having to fire up the big ol smoker....

Not only are these ovens cheap, but I see them all the time at the junk store for $10.

Thoughts?

tb80
05-17-2013, 10:03 AM
Someone's going to say it, so I may as well be the one to do it...have you looked at building a mini-wsm? It may be what you are looking for.

I don't know about using a toaster as a smoker, but would love to see your build and use if you do it.

deguerre
05-17-2013, 10:14 AM
As long as you're covered and outside with an electrical source, how different would it really be than a Brinkmann electric except for scale?

dwfisk
05-17-2013, 10:20 AM
Hey, you & we won't know if you don't try!

aawa
05-17-2013, 10:31 AM
Build yourself a Mini-WSM? It is small, highly portable, very fuel efficient, and doesn't take a lot of coal/wood. You can also do things such as a 5lb roaster chickens, 9lb pork butts, and a bunch of wings if you wanted. A full load of charcoal will last you 6+ hours. If you surf craigslist you can build it for about $50ish.

I love my mini WSM since i can cook for myself or as many as 4 people without any issue.

code3rrt
05-17-2013, 10:34 AM
It should work I suppose, I use my Smokey Joe like that when I want to get some smoke on some steaks, burgers and such, works great for small amounts. I did a long cook with some beef shortribs on my Smokey Joe, worked great.
Smoked, braised shortribs on the Smokey Joe(pRon) (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=156060)

KC

Teltum
05-17-2013, 10:44 AM
For entertainment purposes only.

Step one - Acquire Hot Plate, Cast Iron Skillet(10") and a food quality grate to fit over the skillet. Smoking chips optional. (12x12x12 cardboard box - For lower cost project that will catch fire). Use a 12x12x12 metal box to help prevent fire but we are doing this on the cheap.
Step two. Place chips in skillet.
Step three. place grate on skillet
Step four. place skillet on Hot plate.
Step 5. load meat
step 6. put the hotplate in the box.
IMPORTANT WARNING - This will catch fire. Please do not do this inside, heck maybe set in your weber for when it burns. This may explode and cause serious personal injury, or death.
Steps 7-20 make sure this doesn't burn down your house and ensure your personal safety.
Step 21. Plug in.
Step 22. follow normal smoking procedures. adjust temp on hot plate control or get a potentiometer(sp?)

The hot plate will create the heat and smoke the chips. This is basicly a very basic, very cheap electric smoker I wager can be had for <20$. You could use a cheap Potentimeter(sp?) (electrictians call them pots) to regulate the temp of the plate with out going in the box.

For entertainment purposes only.

Phubar
05-17-2013, 10:55 AM
Weber Go Anywhere.

Bob in St. Louis
05-17-2013, 11:18 AM
Teltum, I saw that Alton Brown episode where he smoked a salmon inside a cardboard box using a hot plate. That was awesome.

As far as buying a Mini-WSM, or smoky Joe, or anyting else...I'm being a cheap-a__ which is why I thought about the used toaster oven. The used units seem to be plentiful at the Goodwill stores.
I think I'm going to do this, I just wanted some feedback and thoughts (which have been great so far). I was also wondering if anybody tried anything like it yet.

tb80
05-17-2013, 11:40 AM
Looks like someone has tried that before on here:

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=94968

Carbon
05-17-2013, 11:47 AM
deleted.....duplicate suggestions

SmokinJohn
05-17-2013, 11:54 AM
Ok guys, y'all have hooked me on this whole smoking meat thing.
But sometimes dragging out, firing up, and cleaning up the 22.5 WSM is more work than it's worth for small amounts of food.

Here's my idea:

I was thinking about using a small cheap toaster oven as a "micro-smoker".
I could put a small cast iron "chip tray" (like you use on a gas grill and wanted smoke flavor) directly on top of the element. Either that, or use a handful of chips rolled up in a ball of aluminum foil with some holes poked in it.

This way, I can make a fattie, a handful of MOINKS, some ABT's or whatever without having to fire up the big ol smoker....

Not only are these ovens cheap, but I see them all the time at the junk store for $10.

Thoughts?

I'm thinking you should go for it, and post the successes/failures.

The first UDS wasn't built in a day....

HankB
05-17-2013, 12:09 PM
Give it a shot. See how it works.

My knee jerk response is to suggest a mini-WSM. In addition to the things you listed, it is a surprisingly capable cooker. I've done things like an 8 lb chicken, brisket (divided between the two racks) warm a ham, bunch of moinks, ABTs, fatties, even hard boiled eggs. More expensive than your plan but IMO worth the extra $$$.

Teltum
05-17-2013, 10:02 PM
I never saw an episode of good eats on making a device like this... I guess food geeks think alike.

mbshop
05-18-2013, 12:14 AM
the master has spoken !!


Weber Go Anywhere.

mbshop
05-18-2013, 12:16 AM
where do you think i found several of my gas and charcoal go-anywheres ?



Teltum, I saw that Alton Brown episode where he smoked a salmon inside a cardboard box using a hot plate. That was awesome.

As far as buying a Mini-WSM, or smoky Joe, or anyting else...I'm being a cheap-a__ which is why I thought about the used toaster oven. The used units seem to be plentiful at the Goodwill stores.
I think I'm going to do this, I just wanted some feedback and thoughts (which have been great so far). I was also wondering if anybody tried anything like it yet.

mbshop
05-18-2013, 12:17 AM
dangit ! now i'm going to be lookin at toasters:tsk:

Gilstarr
05-18-2013, 01:44 AM
I'm with Phubar (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/member.php?u=9928).. the Weber Go Anywhere would be an excellent choice.. or a mini-WSM, I use both.. I know it's more costly but they both are proven choices. :thumb:

Bob in St. Louis
05-18-2013, 09:42 AM
Excellent. Thanks for the posts guys. Especially the ones linked to property damage. I wouldn't do this in the house due to the amount of smoke alone. The smoke alarms wouldn't be able to handle it. But the grease from a fattie has the potential for disaster.

But yea, I'll be doing this (outside). I figure what's to lose?
Of course when I do it, I'll post pictures.
Caseydog has thrown down a MOINK challenge, so this looks like as good a time as any.