Best way/easiest thing to smoke for a newbie?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by da toad, Aug 16, 2015.

  1. Have a Masterbuilt 30" pro electric smoker that I bought yesterday.  It is now getting it's 4 hour seasoning time.  I would like to smoke something tomorrow but want to start easy and small.

    I have both mesquite and apple wood chips.

    Any suggestions about what I should try smoking first and what spices and stuff I need to get for my first smoke.  Advise and recipes appreciated.

    DA TOAD....aka Gary.
  2. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

  3. rdknb

    rdknb Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
  4. jcbigler

    jcbigler Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I would suggest a slab or two of pork spare ribs, in the St. Louis cut, using the 3-2-1 method and an off the shelf rub and sauce. Hard to go wrong that way. 
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
  5. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I say get your feet wet with a cheap easy smoke. Chicken. Just take the chicken make it dry, put it in the smoker, when the internal breast is 163 degrees pull it and rest it 20 to 30 mins. How hard is that. Close the door and leave it closed.

    Over your smoking career you'll do more chicken than any other smoke IMHO. Its the fastest and most delicious when done right.

    I say, save your mesquite this time, its a strong smoke. Just use the apple. Next time experiment with just a little bit of mesquite. Don't get me wrong I love mesquite but you most learn first how much to apply so your different meats are still delicious.

    Nekkid Chicken gets my vote to learn on.

    Don't be afraid to mess up either, some of my best smokes were the ones that didn't go as planned.
  6. cats49er

    cats49er Meat Mopper

    Take the 5-day course that Jeff offers on this site, it's free and will get you started off right. If I were just starting to smoke,I would most likely do 1/2 chicken because I would be familiar with chicken from grillin in the passed and know how it should look and how to yell if it is done if I don't have a temp prob. I would keep it simple.I would brine the chickens in a salt water solution at least 4 hours if not over night.Next I would wash the birds off and pat them dry. After that oil them all over with EVOO and season with just plain salt and pepper or use any store bought poultry seasoning or rub.I personal like to cook chicken at around 300 degrees and till the IT is at least 165 degrees.Another thing I would recommend is what ever wood you are using for smoke flavor, start off using it sparingly and build up to the amount of smoke you like. Good luck             
  7. smokechef

    smokechef Newbie

  8. Chicken!!!

  9. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I would have to say that Foamheart and Cats49er are right on point. Chicken is cheap and very user friendly. I cook mine at around 300* and pull it when the IT is about 165*. The easiest way for me is spatchcocked and I would advise that method. It exposes more of the bird to the heat and seems to cook more evenly. I rub butter under the breast skin and put a little SPOG on. Then, I rub the whole bird with butter on the outside, some SPOG and a little shake of Webers Kickin' Chicken. Good luck with it and just have some fun. The greatest learning is eating our mistakes, Joe.
  10. Welcome to wonderful world of smoking meat! I am also a newbie, only a few months under my belt. Don't be afraid to ask questions because you'll get plenty of great answers from this site.
  11. I agree with the others. Chicken is probably the cheapest and easiest to start on. However I generally smoke my chicken a little hotter around 280 300 to keep the skin from getting chewy.
  12. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    So its all decided, you need to go with gator tail!

    Don'tchaknow it tastes like chicken?
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
  13. sawinredneck

    sawinredneck Meat Mopper

    Yup, gator tail it is, LOL!
    I've been playing with Walmart's "winglets" the last two smokes, wings that are cut in half already. $6 a pound around here, I found an Angus rub I like that I add with brown sugar, a hint of cinnamon and BBQ sauce of choice. I'm a KISS kind of guy. Easy! Hit 165 in three or so hours at 225 and enjoy!
    Keep it simple, see what you like, see what you don't and figure out why on both accounts. But they, all above, are right, chicken is cheap and hard to mess up, trust me, I've screwed up plenty!
  14. siege

    siege Smoke Blower

    Chicken leg quarters are cheap, and easy. I like to brine mine. Simple brine, 1 quart of water, 1 quart, apple juice, 1/2 cup of kosher salt. Brine an hour or two, rinse well, pat dry. Rub on a little oil, salt and pepper, and smoke 2 hours or so, til 165° in the fat part of the thigh. If you have a probe thermometer, use it, if not, use an instant read thermometer.
    Smoke cooking is best done by temperature, not time.
  15. Wow....lots of comments and help....thank you all....keep them coming....great site.[​IMG]
  16. DA TOAD,

    Smoking newbie here, too. I've been doing chickens, learning all along. The points others have made above about chicken are spot on. Keep a log and that will be helpful.

    My chickens have been very tasty, smoky and juicy. Let us know your results, and everybody likes pictures.
  17. $6/lb chicken isn't cheap in my book!  Wow - you can get a lot better meat than chicken wings for that price.  [​IMG]
  18. Easy and small....well since I've discovered I don't like smoked chicken I would recommend baby back ribs, unfoiled.    They have been the easiest thing I have done so far.   Here's what I did, but there are lots of great recipe posts on the site.   Just search ribs.

    Or beer can burgers.   You can see what I did here, but the rest of the thread has great step by step instructions.   These only took me 90 minutes at 275.
  19. sawinredneck

    sawinredneck Meat Mopper

    But it was cheap, compared to the $40 brisket I murdered!
  20. Well... ya got me there! LOL

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