Quantity of Wood Needed

Discussion in 'Beef' started by kyle, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. Using an offset smoker and cooking an 11-12 pound brisket for 18 hours or so, how much wood would be required? The reason I ask is that I live in Minnesota and am thinking about ordering something like mesquite online but wasn't sure about how much to purchase.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Too many variables. What type of offset? How well does it hold heat, and will you use lump also? But if you get a good deal, order a decent amount and keep a suply of it.
  3. wullybully

    wullybully Fire Starter SMF Premier Member

    I agree that there are a lot of variables.

    In my offset, a "Brinkman" style, I can go through 1/2 pound or more of charcoal per hour just to maintain the heat. I have never kept track of how much wood I have added, but would guess half or less compared to the charcoal.

    If you are just getting started with this smoker, go easy on the wood, under smoked food is better than over smoked. Then you can work up to the your desired level. Make notes on what you do for future reference.

    Hope this helps
  4. kookie

    kookie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Have check Menards or walmart? I can get mesquite and hickory at both menards and walmart here in ND.... Might save you some cash on shipping....They have both in chips and chunks.....I think lowes and home depot have it to.................
  5. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Tough telling... but remember lump is used for the heat, not wood. With a smaller offset, using wood only is next to impossible, especially for a brisket. I will say it will probably take less wood than ya think. Remember- Thin and Blue, and if you smell smoke...you're smoking.
  6. All good points. I think that one of the biggest mistakes that beginners make is too much wood added to their lump. Once you get past that visual of smoke pumping from your cooker, you will realize that it actually takes very little wood to produce excellent results. If i do buy wood chunks from HD or lowes, oftentimes I split them in half as well, smaller is better in my opinion for the type of cooker you have. Good luck!!! and keep asking questions.[​IMG]

    Here are some pictures to give you an idea of just how little wood you need. I throw 1 or 2 of these slivers in the firebox every hour or so. I also use an old coffee can to get them smoking nicely.
  7. blacklab

    blacklab Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    The only thing I can add is becareful with mesquite. Being, over smoking can really make the product bitter.
  8. Thanks for all the responses. I'll definitely check in at Menards/Lowe's as well.

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