Smoking in Minnesota Winters

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by rdnystrom, Nov 18, 2014.

  1. rdnystrom

    rdnystrom Newbie

    Curious as to the success others have had smoking during the winter months (especially those from Minnesota or other areas with similar winters).  I'm smoking on a WSM 18.5".  I've heard it's not so much the cold but the wind that affects the smoker.  Was wondering what the cold does for the cook times of the meat and if there are any other tips others might have to ensure smoking success all year long.

  2. My northern friends smoke year round. Yes the wind is the worst part of it. You will need a wind break and some use welding blankets to wrap their smokers. I don't know what the coldest temp people smoke in but I have seen post of -20° and still smoking.

    Happy smoken.

  3. atomicsmoke

    atomicsmoke Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I BBQ and smoke year round. A winter windy day could be challenging but if i can't keep the smoker hot enough I will finish I the oven after getting enough smoke in.
  4. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I got this at Lowes.  Works great.

    This is how well it insulates.

  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Or you could do as I have and build a Q-Bana:

    I can place cheap plastic tarp on it to break wind and Rain . Snow ,etc. This is 12X12 and works great.
  6. nrdk

    nrdk Fire Starter

    I've always used a range/washer box around my MES30 in order to block the wind and keep it insulated, just ensure its not directly touching the MES and you're fine, although that is mostly paranoia since I've never had issues with the outside of the MES being too hot to touch, let alone hot enough to actually cause problems.
  7. rdnystrom

    rdnystrom Newbie

    Thanks for all the insight into cold weather smoking.  I'm thinking of doing a smoke either tomorrow and/or next week since I have a couple of days off around the weekend. 
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You should just leave it out there till the spring thaw.
  9. I smoke all winter long with my Cookshack Amerique. It very well insulated and does the job the same as in the summer. It is easy to use and requires no extra insulation or windbreaks. You cannot get the controller wet so I use it in the garage.
  10. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    When it is super nasty out there I use my Weber Kettle to smoke with and it does great wind or no wind. UDS is pretty bomber too. Year round smoker here. I live on the cold side of washington state so around the same latitude as you. Last week I did a 10 pound chuck roast in the kettle at 8 degrees out and the kettle held 235 for 8 hours no problem. Finished it in the crockpot so I could get some sleep though.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2014
  11. I was prepared to put my smoker away for the witner and then I read a handful of posts on this forum.  So, I picked up a welder's blanket at my local hardward store.  It fits around my smoker really well and I just use a couple of clamps to hold it tight.  I've used my smoker almsot every weekend this winter. Now its been kind of mild so thats help too but I've had no problem getting it up to the temps I've needed.

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