If you want to smoke meat to perfection, first, you need the right tools and accessories. These tools can range from essential items like a good meat thermometer and charcoal chimney, to more specialized tools like a rib rack or a sous-vide machine. I’ve put together a massive list of the most useful meat smoking accessories that every pitmaster should consider adding to their arsenal.
Essential Meat Smoking Accessories
- Meat thermometer is important for accurate cooking and safety
- Charcoal chimney is a safe and easy way to start a charcoal fire without lighter fluid
- Instant-read thermometer is useful for checking temperature in different areas of the meat
- Digital remote thermometer has alarms to alert you when the smoker reaches target temperature
- Grill brush is necessary for cleaning grills
- Grill gloves are useful for handling hot coals and grills
- Meat claws are helpful for shredding pork and lifting heavy cuts of meat
- Smoking pouch and smoking tube are options for adding extra smoke to a barbecue or smoker
- Tongs and spatula set are essential for handling meat during cooking
- Knives are important for trimming fat and carving meat
- Electric knives are useful for slicing large cuts of meat
- Rib rack allows for efficient use of grill space and smoking of multiple ribs at once
- Vertical chicken roaster helps cook chicken evenly and produces crispy skin
- Butcher paper and heavy duty aluminum foil are useful for wrapping and preserving moisture in meat during cooking
- Poultry rack is helpful for cooking chicken drumsticks evenly
- Aluminium pans can be used as water pans, drip trays, and roasting pans
- Ash shovel is useful for cleaning ash from the smoker
- Electric charcoal lighter makes lighting coals easier
- Cooler box is essential for resting meat
- Slow n Sear and Vortex are useful accessories for kettle grills
- Basting brush and mop brush are
|Meat Thermometer||A device used to measure the internal temperature of meat while it is being cooked. Can be a simple duel-probe thermometer or a more advanced wireless thermometer with Bluetooth or WiFi capability.|
|Charcoal Chimney||A metal cylinder with holes in the sides to allow airflow, used for safely and easily starting a charcoal fire without the use of lighter fluid.|
|Instant-Read Thermometer||A thermometer used to quickly and accurately measure the internal temperature of meat in different areas during the final stages of cooking.|
|Meat Injector||A syringe-like device used to inject marinades, brines, or other liquid into meat to add flavor and moisture.|
|Butcher Paper||A type of paper used to wrap meat during cooking, popularized by barbecue guru Aaron Franklin. Can be used as an alternative to foil and helps to retain moisture while also allowing smoke to penetrate the meat.|
|Mop Brush & Bucket||Mopping is a barbecue technique used to add flavor and moisture to the meat. This is done with a small brush that looks like a mini mop.|
|Grill Grates||Removable metal grates that fit over a grill or smoker, used to cook meat directly over the heat source. Can be made of different materials such as stainless steel, porcelain-coated steel, or cast iron.|
|Grill Baskets||A basket-like container with holes, used to hold small or delicate items such as vegetables or seafood while grilling. Allows for easy flipping and prevents food from falling through the grill grates.|
|Grill Mats||Thin, non-stick sheets that can be placed on top of grill grates, used to prevent small items from falling through and to make cleaning easier.|
|Grill Toppers||A metal or wire rack that fits over the grill grates, used to hold small items such as shrimp or vegetables while grilling. Can also be used as a makeshift griddle for cooking items such as eggs or bacon.|
|Electric Knives||A knife with a motorized blade, used to easily slice through large cuts of meat such as brisket or turkey. Can help achieve even and precise slices.|
|Rib Rack||A metal rack that holds ribs upright, allowing for more ribs to be cooked in a smaller space such as a smoker. Can help ensure even cooking but may result in uneven surface cooking.|
|Vertical Chicken Roaster||A metal rack that holds a whole chicken in an upright position, used to cook the chicken evenly and help achieve crispy skin.|
|Grill Tools||A long-handled utensil with scissor-like jaws, used to flip and handle food on a grill or smoker. Can be made of different materials such as stainless steel or silicone.|
|Heavy Duty Aluminium Foil||A thick, durable foil used to wrap meat during cooking, often referred to as the “Texas Crunch.” Helps to retain moisture and prevent meat from drying out during the final stages of a low and slow cook.|
|Poultry Rack||A metal rack used to hold poultry such as chicken or turkey while cooking, allowing for even smoke and preventing sticking|
|Injection Marinade||A marinade that is injected into the meat using a special injector tool. This helps infuse flavor and moisture into the meat.|
|Barbecue Aprons||Protective clothing worn while cooking to protect clothes from spills and splatters.|
|Pellet Smoker Insulation Blankets||Insulating blankets designed to fit around pellet smokers to help maintain heat and improve cooking efficiency.|
|Dry Rubs||A mixture of spices and herbs that is applied to the surface of the meat before cooking to add flavor.|
|Barbecue Sauces||A condiment used for basting or as a finishing sauce for grilled or smoked meat.|
|Sous Vide Equipment||A method of cooking where food is vacuum sealed and cooked in a water bath at a precise temperature. Sous-vide is the best way to reheat leftover barbecue.|
|Vacuum Packing Machine||A machine used to remove air from a bag or container to preserve the freshness of the food inside. Works well with a sous-vide machine for storing and reheating leftovers.|
|Vacuum Packing Bags||Bags specifically designed to be used with a vacuum packing machine to remove air and preserve the freshness of the food inside.|
|Trimming Knife||Specifically designed for trimming excess fat and sinew from cuts of meat, including brisket. It is typically a small, sharp knife with a thin, flexible blade that allows the user to make precise cuts and remove excess fat from the meat.|
|Brisket Knife||A long, thin knife with a sharp, narrow blade that allows the user to make precise cuts through the thick, tough brisket.|
|Smoking tubes, boxes & pouches||Smoking tubes, pouches and boxes hold wood pellets, wood chips or sawdust to add extra smoke flavor to food when cooking in a smoker.|
|Meat claws||Shaped like bear claws, meat shredders are used to make dishes like pulled pork. They are also useful in moving hot meat on and off the grill.|
|Heat resistant gloves||These gloves allow you to safely handle hot items such as red-hot grates, pouring in coals, and tossing wood into the fire.|
|Grill brush||This tool helps remove stuck-on food and grease from the cooking grates. This improves the flow of heat and smoke in the smoker.|
|Fire Proof Mats||A fire proof barbecue mat is a type of mat that is specifically designed to be used to sit under a grill or barbecue. It is made of a heat-resistant material that can withstand the occasional charcoal spill or flying ember. These mats are especially useful if your smoker sits on a wooden deck.|
|Pink Butcher Paper||Used for wrapping meat in the final stages of a low and slow cook. Paper is sometimes preferred to foil because it allows the meat to breathe, and preserves the bark more than foil.|
|Aluminium Foil||Also used to wrap meat in the final stages, foil traps steam in the meat helping the meat to cook faster.|
|Zip-Lock Bags||Useful for marinading meat prior to cooking. Also can be used for storing barbecue leftovers, and sous-vide cooking.|
|Pepper Grinder||Ideal for Texas-style salt and pepper rubs. A grinder allows you to make large batches of pepper grinder to a specific mesh size.|
1. Meat Thermometer
A meat thermometer is an essential tool for any pitmaster because it allows you to accurately measure the temperature of your smoker and the internal temperature of the meat you are cooking. The built-in thermometers on smokers are often inaccurate, so it’s best to use a separate, high-quality meat thermometer.
Digital thermometers with programmable alarms can alert you when the target temperature has been reached and are especially useful for ensuring food safety. There are various types of meat thermometers available, ranging in price and technology.
A simple dual-probe thermometer costs around $50, while more advanced models with WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities can cost upwards of $300. An instant-read thermometer is also a useful tool for pitmasters, as it allows you to quickly and accurately check the temperature of different areas of the meat during the cooking process.
Check out the TP20, the best of the affordable thermometers on the market.
2. Charcoal Starter
A charcoal chimney, also known as a charcoal starter, is another essential tool for pitmasters who use a charcoal smoker. It’s the safest and easiest way to start a charcoal fire without using lighter fluid, which can affect the taste of the food and be dangerous.
A charcoal chimney is a metal cylinder with holes for airflow, and it’s used to hold and light the charcoal. Chimneys come in different sizes and are a useful tool for measuring and managing the coals for your smoker.
3. Instant-Read Thermometer
An instant-read thermometer is another essential tool for pitmasters, as it allows you to quickly and accurately check the temperature of different areas of the meat during the cooking process. While a remote digital thermometer will give you an indication of the overall temperature of the meat, an instant-read thermometer can give you fast and accurate readings in multiple areas of the meat, which is especially important for ensuring food safety.
Meat has uneven surfaces, so it cooks unevenly, and it’s full of harmful bacteria that can be dangerous if not properly cooked. An instant-read thermometer removes the guesswork and ensures that your meat is not only tender and delicious, but also safe.
High-quality thermometers, like those made by ThermoWorks, will give fast, accurate readings within a few seconds. Avoid cheaper thermometers that may be inaccurate or take up to 30 seconds to give a reading. For more information on instant-read thermometers, check out my guide on the 5 best options available.
Best instant read thermometer in terms of reliability, accuracy and affordability: TP19 by ThermoPro
4. Heat-Resistant Gloves
Heat-resistant gloves are a must-have for any pitmaster. Smoking meat requires handling hot equipment and materials, such as the smoker itself, red-hot grates, and burning coals or wood. Oven mitts and dish cloths are not sufficient for this type of work, as they do not provide enough protection against heat and flames.
To ensure your safety while smoking meat, it is essential to invest in a pair of heat-resistant gloves. These gloves are specially designed to withstand high temperatures and protect your hands from burns. You can find them at a hardware store or online, and they come in a variety of materials, including silicone and leather.
Many also have a cotton lining for added comfort. Investing in a good pair of heat-resistant gloves will not only keep you safe while smoking meat, but it will also make the job easier and more enjoyable. Beast Armour are a best seller on Amazon, or basic welding gloves are also suitable.
5. Meat Injector
A meat injector is another helpful tool for pitmasters, as it allows you to inject flavor deep into the muscle fibers of the meat. There are several types of meat injectors available, made of either plastic or metal, with needles of varying sizes and holes to spray the liquid in all directions. It’s worth investing in a high-quality metal injector, as cheaper plastic options may not last as long. Some pitmasters don’t find meat injectors necessary, and prefer more natural methods of flavoring their meat. The Beast Injector is an example of an affordable stainless steel injector that can be found on Amazon. Check it out here.
6. Meat Shredders
Meat shredders are tools that are designed to help shred cooked meat, such as pork, chicken, or beef. Also known as bear paws, these tools are useful for shredding tough cuts of meat and lifting and moving large, hot roasts. They are shaped like claws and are often used to shred pulled pork. There are many brands of claws available, made of materials such as stainless steel, nylon, and plastic. There are several good products, however the Bear Paws are the original shredders.
7. Grill Brush
A grill brush is a useful tool for cleaning a smoker because it can help to remove stuck-on food and grease from the cooking grates. This is important for several reasons. First, a dirty smoker can be difficult to use effectively, as the build-up of food and grease can interfere with the flow of heat and smoke.
This can make it difficult to achieve the desired level of smoke flavor or cook the food evenly. A dirty smoker can also be a breeding ground for bacteria, which can lead to food poisoning if not properly cleaned. Using a grill brush can help to prevent these problems by keeping the cooking grates clean and free of debris. It’s important to use a grill brush with interwoven bristles to avoid leaving metal bristles behind, which could be dangerous if ingested. Check out this Amazon Choice grill brush.
8. Smoking Maze
A smoking tube is a tool that can be used to add smoke flavor to food when cooking in a smoker. All you do is fill the tube with wood, either in the form of pellets, chips, or sawdust. The wood is heated to the point where it begins to smolder and infuse smoke flavor onto the meat. Smoking tools are useful if you want to double your smoke output, especially with electric smokers which produce less smoke.
Pouches hold sawdust are similar to smoking tubes, but they are made of a porous material, such as foil or a fabric, that allows the sawdust inside to come into contact with the heat source. The sawdust is ignited and begins to smoke, and the smoke is then drawn into the smoker to add extra smoke flavor.
Smoking boxes with wood chips are boxes, usually made of metal that are filled with wood chips. They are placed in the smoker, either directly on the heat source or on a rack above it, and the wood chips are ignited.
9. Grill Tools
Grill tool kits usually contain several items, but they will always at least contain tongs and a spatula. Tongs can be used to safely move hot coals, wood chips, or other smoking materials around the grill. They can also be used to turn and rearrange the meat as it is cooking, helping to ensure even cooking and prevent the meat from burning. Spatulas can be used to flip and move the meat around the grill, as well as to apply sauces or rubs to the surface of the meat.
10. Brisket Knife
A brisket knife is a type of knife specifically designed for cutting brisket. It is typically a long, thin knife with a sharp, narrow blade that allows the user to make precise cuts through the thick, tough meat. The blade is often made of high-quality steel and is flexible enough to follow the contours of the meat as it is being cut. Some brisket knives also have serrated edges, which can help to saw through the meat more easily. Brisket knives are often used in barbecue and are popular among pitmasters for preparing smoked or grilled brisket.
11. Trimming Knife
A trimming knife is a type of knife specifically designed for trimming excess fat and sinew from cuts of meat, including brisket. It is typically a small, sharp knife with a thin, flexible blade that allows the user to make precise cuts and remove excess fat from the meat. The blade of a trimming knife is usually made of high-quality steel and is flexible enough to follow the contours of the meat as it is being trimmed. Some trimming knives also have serrated edges, which can help to saw through the fat and sinew more easily. Trimming knives are often used in barbecue and are popular among pitmasters for preparing smoked or grilled brisket. They are also commonly used in professional kitchens for preparing a variety of meats.
12. Electric Knife
Electric knives make light work of slicing certain cuts of meat, such as brisket, turkey, or ham. They are especially useful when cutting through large amounts of meat, and help you get precise, even slices, which is good in terms of presentation.
These knives use an electric motor to power the blade, which makes it easier to cut through tough meats without applying too much pressure. They typically have two serrated blades that are mounted on a handle and connected to an electric motor. All you need to do is hold the handle and guide the blades through the meat, using the power of the motor to make precise cuts.
Some electric knives also have a button or trigger so you can control the speed of the blades, depending on the thickness and toughness of the meat being cut.
There are several brands and models of electric knives available, ranging from budget-friendly options to professional-grade knives. Just make sure you choose an electric knife with a durable blade and a comfortable grip to ensure it is easy to use, otherwise you’re wasting your money.
13. Rib Rack
A rib rack is a useful tool that will hold and cook ribs on a smoker. It’s typically made of metal and has a series of horizontal bars that can hold multiple ribs upright, allowing them to be cooked simultaneously. All you need to do is place the ribs in the rib rack, then set it on the smoker, either directly on the grill grates or on a drip pan to catch any excess drippings.
The main advantage of rib rack is they are space savers. A rack allows you to cook multiple ribs at once, saving time and effort. These work well in kettle grills, or any other smoker that has a limited cooking area. The other good thing about rib racks is you can cook ribs in an upright position. This keeps the ribs moist, and prevents them from drying out. I find the ribs cook evenly because the smoke can circulate around all sides of the ribs.
14. Vertical Chicken Roaster
A vertical chicken holder, also known as a chicken roaster, is a device that is designed to hold a whole chicken in a vertical position while it is being cooked in a smoker. Cooking chicken in a smoker can be a little bit tricky because of its size and shape. And you always need to consider food safety with chicken. A vertical roaster helps cook the chicken to a safe internal temperature.
The holder typically consists of a long metal rod with a handle at one end and a base at the other end. The chicken is placed onto the rod, with the cavity of the chicken facing down and the legs pointing upwards. The rod is then inserted into the smoker and the chicken is cooked slowly over low heat.
More flavor. The vertical position of the chicken allows the fat and juices to drip down and away from the meat, resulting in a moist and flavorful chicken, and crispy skin. The holder can also be used to cook other types of poultry, such as turkeys, in a smoker.
Space-saving: A vertical chicken roaster takes up less space on the grill or in the oven, allowing you to cook other items alongside it or fit more poultry on the grill at once.
Even cooking: By cooking the chicken upright, the heat can circulate evenly throughout the bird, ensuring that it cooks evenly and is not under or overcooked in certain areas.
Easy to carve: Cooking the chicken upright makes it easier to carve and serve, as the meat will already be separated from the bones.
There are many different types of vertical chicken roasters available, including ones made of stainless steel, aluminum, or silicone. Some come with a built-in thermometer or have a removable drip pan to catch the fat and juices.
15. Fire Proof Mat
A fire proof barbecue mat is a type of mat that is specifically designed to be used to sit underneath a grill or barbecue. They are made of a heat-resistant material and can withstand the odd burning coal or hot ash. These mats can help prevent fires on wooden decks, or any area with flammable materials nearby.
16. Butcher Paper & Aluminium Foil
Butcher paper and heavy duty aluminum foil are two essential tools for a pitmaster, each serving a different purpose in the smoking process. Butcher paper, made without wax or plastic, is often used to wrap meat in the final stages of a low and slow cook in order to retain moisture and prevent the meat from drying out, a process known as the “Texas Crunch.” On the other hand, aluminum foil is often used to wrap meat in the earlier stages of the cook in order to keep the meat moist and prevent it from drying out. However, the use of aluminum foil versus butcher paper is a matter of personal preference, with some pitmasters preferring the flavor imparted by butcher paper and others preferring the moisture retention properties of aluminum foil. It is important to make sure to purchase heavy duty aluminum foil in order to avoid tears during the wrapping process.
17. Poultry Rack
A poultry rack is a great tool for grilling or smoking chicken drumsticks. Using a poultry rack allows for even smoke exposure and prevents the chicken from sticking to the grill. The highest rated poultry rack on Amazon is a reliable choice for your cooking needs. Make sure to check the current price before purchasing.
18. Aluminium Pans
Aluminum pans are a versatile and necessary tool for any pitmaster. They can be used as water pans, drip trays, and roasting pans. It’s a good idea to stock up, as you’ll likely go through many of these during your cooking endeavors. Amazon offers a 30-pack of aluminum pans at a good value. Be sure to check out the current price before making a purchase.
19. Ash Shovel
An ash shovel is a useful tool for efficiently removing ash from your smoker or grill. While a dustpan and brush can also be used for this purpose, an ash shovel with a curved metal design can hold more ash and is easier to use. The Weber Smokey Mountain ash shovel is a good choice, but it is suitable for use with most smokers. An outdoor vacuum can also be used for a thorough clean, while the brush and pan can be used for quick ash removal.
20. Basting Brush
A basting brush is used in grilling or barbecuing to apply sauces, marinades, or other liquids to meat during the cooking process. The brush helps to keep the meat moist and can add flavor. It is important to choose a brush with sturdy, heat-resistant bristles to ensure that it can withstand the high temperatures of the grill or smoker. However, the brush needs to be somewhat gentle so the bark on the meat isn’t damaged.
21. Mop Brush & Bucket
Mopping is a barbecue technique used to add flavor and moisture to the meat. This is done with a small brush that looks like a mini mop.
22. Rub Shakers
Rub shakers are containers designed to hold and dispense dry rubs or seasoning blends for grilling or smoking meat. They can be made of various materials, such as stainless steel or plastic, and often have a handle for easy use. Using rub shakers allows you to easily apply and re-apply seasoning to your meat without having to use your hands or dirty utensils.
23. Spray Bottle
A spray bottle is a handy tool to have in the kitchen or on the grill, as it allows you to easily apply liquids such as water, vinegar, or fruit juice to your food. This can be especially useful when cooking meat, as it helps to keep it moist and can add flavor to the final product. Some spray bottles even have a nozzle that can reach all angles, making it easy to apply liquid to hard-to-reach areas.
24. Electric Charcoal Lighter
An electric charcoal lighter is a device that uses electricity to start a fire in a charcoal grill or smoker. These lighters can be a convenient and efficient way to get your grill or smoker going, especially if you have trouble lighting a fire using traditional methods. They can also be useful for lighting smoking tubes or boxes, which can be used to add extra smoke flavor to your meat.
25. Grill Grates
If you’re using a grill with a standard, flat grate, you may want to consider upgrading to a set of grill grates. Grill grates come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but many of them are designed to help promote even cooking and prevent food from falling through the cracks. Some grill grates are made from stainless steel, while others are made from cast iron or porcelain-coated materials. Some grill grates also come with additional features, such as hinged sections that allow you to easily add more coals or wood chips during the cooking process. Grill grates are especially useful for grilling smaller items, like vegetables or seafood, that might otherwise fall through the standard grill grates.
26. Grill Baskets
Grill baskets are another useful tool for grilling small items or for grilling delicate items, like fish or vegetables. Grill baskets come in a variety of sizes and styles, and they’re typically made from stainless steel or other durable materials. Some grill baskets even come with removable handles, which makes it easier to flip and move items around on the grill. Grill baskets are especially useful for grilling items that might otherwise stick to the grill grates or fall through the cracks.
27. Grill Matt
If you’re grilling items that are prone to sticking, like fish or vegetables, you may want to consider using a grill mat. Grill mats are typically made from silicone or other heat-resistant materials, and they’re designed to be placed on top of the grill grates to create a smooth, non-stick cooking surface. Grill mats are especially useful for grilling items that might otherwise stick to the grill grates or fall through the cracks. Grill mats are also easy to clean and store, which makes them a convenient tool for any grilling enthusiast
If you want to take your meat to the next-level, then you should consider buying a meat injector. Marinading, rubs and other seasonings will only the flavor the outside of the meat. Injection is the only way to get flavor deep into the muscle fibers. There are several meat injectors on the market, mostly made of plastic or metal. The needles come in various sizes and most have holes in the sides of the needles to spray liquid in all directions. As with most things, you get what you pay for. You can start with a cheap plastic injectors for the short term, but they don’t last long in my experience. There are some great metal injectors in the $30-$40 price range. Cave Tools make a good stainless steel meat injector (check the latest price here). Butcher BBQ are known for their world championship marinades and brine mixtures, and they also sell a great Pistol Grip Injector Gun. To learn more about injecting meat, check out : Should I Inject Brisket?
Smoking pouches are a brilliant way to add an extra shot of smoke to your barbecue. Pouches are mostly used on gas grills but can also be thrown into an electric smoker for extra smoke. Pouches are made of mesh and hold wood pellets or wood chips. Once you get the wood smoldering, pouches put out a decent amount of white smoke. Mo’s Smoking Pouch is the best, and you can find it here.
Some smokers don’t produce enough smoke, so a way around this problem is a smoking tube. Similar idea to a smoking pouch, a smoking tube is a metal cylinder that holds wood pellets that smolder on your grill or in an electric smoker. Smoking tubes can hold a lot more pellets than a pouch, therefore can produce smoke for much longer. Check the latest price for the A-MAZ-N Tube here.
Tongs and Spatula Set
Tongs and spatula are essential for smoking meat and are the tools you will probably use most. Long tongs are handy for picking up the odd hot coal that tries to roll away. There are hundreds of spatula and tong sets on the market, it just depends how much money you’re prepared to spend. As long as they are stainless steel, have a good grip and are dishwasher safe. This set is a best seller on Amazon.
When I was a butcher, I used Victorinox or Dexter Russell knives. These knives are perfect for trimming fat caps on brisket and are both available on Amazon. You also want a decent carving knife to slice up your brisket. If you’re after super high-quality and affordable knives that will last you a lifetime, buy something from Günter Wilhelm.
Electric knives make light work of slicing brisket, turkeys or any other large slab of meat. Electric knives will give you perfect slices if presentation is important. This is the Amazon Choice Electric Knife.
If grill space is an issue, a rib rack is a good way to fit more meat into your smoker. A rack will allow you to smoke 5 sets of ribs in one small rack, which is helpful if you have a small smoker. With a rib rack, you can use the rest of grill space for a large roast. The only downside to rib holders is the meat cooks unevenly. This isn’t a huge problem if you rotate the meat into different positions. Check out the Rib Rack here.
Vertical Chicken Roaster
There are a lot of advantages to cooking chicken and turkey in an upright position. A chicken rack helps to cook the chicken evenly and helps make the skin nice and crispy. Check out the Chicken Throne on Amazon.
The brisket smoking community is divided over the foil vs butcher paper debate. I prefer butcher paper to find the flavor noticeable. Barbecue guru Aaron Franklin popularized butcher paper. Foil was the standard prior to the trend and there’s nothing wrong with aluminium foil. It’s worth trying and see the difference yourself. Just make sure you purchase the right paper and avoid any paper with wax or plastic. Amazon sells large rolls but make sure you get the 24 inch roll because the smaller roll isn’t wide enough to wrap briskets. Check the latest price here.
Heavy Duty Aluminium Foil
Wrapping meat in foil is an important stage in smoking brisket, ribs, pork butts, etc. Otherwise known as the “Texas Crunch”, wrapping keeps the meat moist in those final stages of a low and slow cook. The first half of the cook is all about letting the smoke absorb into the meat. The second part of the cook is about preventing the meat from drying out. Make sure you get heavy duty foil to avoid tares.
I do all my chicken drumsticks on a poultry rack. You get a nice even smoke and they don’t stick to the grill. This one is the highest rated on Amazon. Check out the current price here.
You will go through dozens of these things. Aluminium pans are versatile and make good water pans, drip trays and roasting pans. Amazon sells 30 packs, which are the best value for money that I’ve seen so far. You can find them on Amazon here.
A normal dust pan and brush can get the job done, but I find the curved metal ash shovel easier to use and holds more ash. Weber makes an ash shovel for the Weber Smokey Mountain but it is suitable for most smokers. I use an outdoor vacuum to do a proper clean and use the brush and pan when I want to clear some ash quickly.
Jumbo Zip-Lock Bags
Zip-lock bags are important for soaking large roasts in a wet brining, dry brine, or marinade. Buy XL zip-lock bags because they need to be big enough to fit a whole turkey. You can buy XL ziplock bags here.
Mopping meat is a crucial part of the meat smoking process. Basting meat with a mop sauce helps keep your roasts moist and tender. A regular kitchen basting brush is suitable. This mop brush is the highest rated on Amazon.
These are handy if you like to make your own meat rubs or you buy your rubs in bulk. I will often re-apply rub at different stages of the cook. In the chaos smoking, I like having something with a handle that I can grab. I also find that often I have dirty hands and my rubs end up covered in blood and grease. I find stainless steel shakers are more hygienic and easy to clean. You can find stainless steel rub shakers here.
Sprays bottles are good for spritzing meat with water, apple cider vinegar or apple juice. I find spraying much quicker and easier than mopping with a basting brush. This bottle works on all angles and upside-down, as seen in the video above.
Electric Charcoal Lighter
This fits into the luxury items list, but an electric charcoal lighter will make your life easier when you are lighting charcoal. Regular lighters work fine, but sometimes you just need more firepower. This item is also handy for lighting smoking tubes/boxes. Click here to view on Amazon.
You likely already have one of these, but a cooler box is essential for resting brisket, pork butts, etc. Wrapping meat in a towel then resting in a dry cooler is a common practice. You can let a brisket sit in a dry cooler for two-hours before slicing, and it will still be hot.
Slow N Sear
If you have a Kettle grill, then a slow-n-sear is a ground-breaking accessory. The Slow n Sear is a charcoal basket with a water reservoir, and creates a two-zone cooking setup which allows you to smoke, roast, bake and grill. You can get the original from the Slow n Sear website, or an imitation from Amazon here.
The Vortex is another great accessory if you smoke meat on a kettle grill. The Vortex is awesome for short smokes like chicken wings, drums, burgers and sausages. You can find the Vortex on Amazon here.