If you’re not a vegetarian, it’s safe to say that there’s a good chance you love your meat. But, have you ever stopped to think about what makes steak and bacon so tantalizing to the taste buds? What is so special about meat that, for most people, trumps the mounting scientific data of its detrimental effects on human health?
Well, the key to this conundrum lies in the flavor. You'll be surprised to learn that 95 percent of what most people believe to be the taste of meat, actually stems from the aroma.
If you thought that the mouth-watering goodness that is barbecued steak is out of this world, then smoking it will add a whole new dimension to the experience! The hype surrounding this cooking trend isn’t just a backyard competition with your next-door neighbor to see who has the fancier grill. It tenderizes the meat and infuses a unique smoky flavor that can’t be replicated using any other barbecuing technique.
If you haven’t tried it, you’re missing out! We compiled a list of the best charcoal BBQ smokers for 2023 that are guaranteed to give you the best results. Come discover the top charcoal smokers and charcoal grills with smokers!
1. Best Charcoal Smoker Overall
Large Big Green Egg
One of the most popular outdoor charcoal smokers of all time has to be the Big Green Egg. It's a kamado-style egg-shaped grill that is capable of generating extremely high temperatures up to 600 degrees. It is built with a ceramic shell that allows it to hold low temperatures for sustained periods making it the ideal smoking companion.
- Heavy-duty ceramic shell exterior
- Porcelain-coated cooking surface
- Glazed interior for easy cleaning
- Cooking area: 262 square inches
2. Best Portable Charcoal Smoker
Weber 711001 Smokey Mountain
Take in the sweet smell of pulled pork smoking in your Smokey Mountain Cooker smoker. Or head to the lake and smoke salmon over charcoal mixed with apple wood chunks. Knowing that with every passing moment, you’re one step closer to barbecue heaven.
- Two separate cooking areas for versatility
- Easy access aluminum door for easily adding fuel while cooking
- Adjustable vents for controlling air flow and temperature
- Includes a cover for protecting your smoker from the elements
3. Best Smoker Under $1000
Big Green Egg Minimax With Portable Nest
While MiniMax is perfect for camping, poolside and tailgating at the ballgame, it is just at home at award-winning restaurants around the world where top chefs love exploring the EGG’s versatility and discovering the amazing flavors produced in such a compact and high-performance package.
- Made of heavy-duty, powder-coated steel
- Folds for easy transport
- Quick-release clips secure the MiniMax firmly to Portable Nest
- Rubber pads on the bottom of the legs
4. Best Charcoal Smoker For Flavor
Weber Mountain Cooker 22-Inch Charcoal Smoker
The Weber 731001 Smokey Mountain Cooker 22-Inch Charcoal Smoker is an easy-to-use grill and is the perfect companion for anyone planning to host a big barbecue event. It has ample room to hold up to 60 pounds of meat, which, for perspective, is equivalent to about four large turkeys. Its superior design promotes efficient airflow to hold consistent temperatures for long periods and to give your meat an authentic smokehouse flavor right in the comfort of your home.
- Porcelain-enameled steel construction
- Built-in thermometer
- Cooking area: 726 square
- Power source: Charcoal
5. Best Budget Charcoal Smoker
Weber Original Kettle Premium 26-Inch Charcoal Grill
The Weber Kettle grill has been around for nearly seven decades. So, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve eaten a steak, a hotdog, or a burger cooked on one at some point in your life. The Weber Original Kettle Premium 26-Inch Charcoal Grill adds a new twist to an old classic by incorporating modern features like a built-in lid thermometer for full heat control to take your grilling and smoking experience to a whole new level.
- Porcelain-enameled body
- One-Touch cleaning system
- Built-in thermometer
- Cooking area: 508 square
6. Best Freestanding Charcoal Smoker
Kamado Joe Classic II Ceramic Grill With Cart
The Kamado Joe Classic II 18-inch Ceramic Grill with Cart is one of the most versatile cooking products that are on the market right now. Its' design is based on an ancient clay-cooking principle that originated in China. It infuses modern-day user-friendly features like low-temperature smoking, high-heat grilling, and other advanced capabilities that guarantee to seal all that smoky goodness and moisture at any temperature.
- Ceramic and cast iron construction
- Built-in temperature gauge
- Cooking area: 265 square inches
- Built-in Thermometer
Top Pick for 2023
With so many charcoal smokers in the market to choose from, each one brings something different to the table depending on your barbecuing goals and budget. If you’re looking for something versatile, feature-rich, and with excellent temperature control, then you can’t go wrong with the Big Green Egg.
Looking for a natural gas grill? Check out our blog for the best natural gas grills for 2023.
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