Charcoal smoker

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by cholguin, May 8, 2016.

  1. Hi. New to smoking. I see a lot of people have electric smokers but we bought one that uses charcoal. Any tips on temp, when to add the flavor chips, etc.? We smoked some ribs a while back but think I added the chips too often or maybe used too much because instead of a nice smokey flavor they tasted like smoke, period! Want to do a 3 lb pork loin today, would like to get it right or I think my husband might give up and go back to the gas grill all the time. Haha.
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    First of all welcome to the site.

    It would be helpful to know what brand smoker you are using.

    Normally a few chunks of wood mixed into the charcoal is all you need.

    Mix in some chunks with the fresh charcoal. Then add 10-12 lit briquettes in the middle & you should be fine.

    It's called the minnion method.

    Here's how it looks in my WSM.

    Hope this helps.

  3. Thank you and Thanks! We will try this today. So we should get the wood chunks and not the chips... And don't add any more once it's started? That explains why it tasted so smoky.
  4. mike5051

    mike5051 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to the site!  Depending on the smoker, the exhaust vent needs to be open also.  Trapped smoke can create creosote and make food have a bitter smoke flavor.

  5. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Welcome from SC. It's good to have you here. Al and Mike have you on the right path. Let us know what type of smoker you have and there may be some more detail tips that will help. Joe
  6. Wow! Thanks everyone. You guys are really helpful. It's just a Brinkmann Smoke N Grill. We didn't want to go expensive or fancy at first in case we didn't like it or were really bad at it!
  7. Thanks for the tips on the pork roast last month! It turned out fantastic! Sorry no pics, we ate it before I remembered. We're going to try a whole chicken tomorrow and my husband wants to brine it overnight. Everything I'm reading says 8 hours, tops. Also the recipe I found for brine says 1 gal water 1 cup salt and 1/2 cup sugar. My husband thinks that's too much salt. Any advice? You guys were so helpful last time, hope you don't mind me picking your brain again! Thanks!
  8. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I don't see anything wrong with that much salt in the brine, just reduce the salt in your rub to keep the total amount of salt at a reasonable level.
  9. Ok. Good to know. Thanks. Any thoughts on how long to keep the chicken in the brine?
  10. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    IMHO, I think anywhere between 4 hours and overnight works. I usually go for the longer time on a turkey. I don't brine chickens. For your smoke chunks, I like apple on poultry, but cherry will work also.
  11. Apple sounds great. Thank you! Cherry sounds good too....

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