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KJ Kettle Joe First Impressions and Cooks

Alphonse

Smoke Blower
138
91
Joined Dec 1, 2019
I have been cooking on the new Kamado Joe Kettle Joe and thought folks may be interested in my impressions.

The overall concept of the Kettle Joe is quite interesting. It successfully integrates the merits of a high-end kettle grill and a kamado. It comes with a ceramic lined firebox and Kamado Joe’s SLŌROLLER technology. The cooking grates and firebox cage are all stainless steel. The SloRoller is an insert that can be taken on and off depending on how you want to use the grill. The hinged lid is adjustable to accommodate using it as a kettle grill, sans SloRoller.

I am quite impressed with the performance of the SloRoller. It functions far better than I imagined and the ceramic lined firebox makes this pit relatively fuel efficient and responsive. While I have used the grill strictly as a kettle grill, most of my cooks have been focused on using it setup with the SloRoller. I have used it with a PID control system and found that it will track the setpoint spot-on. One of my first cooks was a big batch of wings, and to my surprise they cooked consistently across the grate. The ones in the center were the same as the ones near the periphery.

The integrated cart is robust and the locking casters work very well. The vertically adjustable hinge is equally robust and very well made. It allows you to swap from kettle mode to kamado/SloRoller mode lickity split. At 22” in diameter, it opens up the universe of accessories for this size grill. Flipside, it is not hard to imagine that the SloRoller insert may eventually become available as a separate purchase since it should fit on other 22” grills.

It will be interesting to see how sales on this grill develop. I do think KJ has landed a very innovative design with the Kettle Joe and at its price-point of $499, you get a lot for your money. It is an extremely versatile cooker with good materials of construction that should prove to be durable. I think it could be called the “Swiss Army Knife of Kettle Grills”.


wings about to load.jpg

Wings finished.jpg

midpoint.jpg

PXL_20210305_191822317.PORTRAIT.jpg PXL_20210306_012212793.PORTRAIT.jpg Kettle cook prime sirloin.jpg
 

Colin1230

Smoking Fanatic
SMF Premier Member
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Joined Jan 18, 2021
Very nice write up. Thanks for sharing this with us. I don't own a KJ but have looked at a lot of them, good stuff for sure.
 

JLeonard

Master of the Pit
SMF Premier Member
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Joined Apr 17, 2020
Looks like it turns out some good stuff. Along with your help of course.
Jim
 

BigW.

Smoking Fanatic
380
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Joined May 13, 2019
Cool, did not know that existed. I nice blend of a Weber and a Joe III.
 

Hank R

Meat Mopper
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Joined Feb 16, 2018
Very interesting I have looked at them , just not ready just yet but interested in one some day.
 

sawhorseray

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Joined Oct 17, 2014
That's a very nice looking rig Alphonse and you appear to be turning out some fine with it! RAY
 

masssmoke

Smoke Blower
136
104
Joined May 8, 2016
Yes interesting. I guess that because it is not full ceramic is why it is so much cheaper than the other Kamado Joes or BGE?
 

IMAVGAN

Fire Starter
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25
Joined Jul 29, 2020
Did you need to do anything to the ribs to keep them moist? Did the grill dry them out more than a smoker would?
 

Alphonse

Smoke Blower
138
91
Joined Dec 1, 2019
Did you need to do anything to the ribs to keep them moist? Did the grill dry them out more than a smoker would?
No, I didn't spritz them at all and also did not wrap them I wanted to see how they did without it.. The cook was kamado like in terms of moisture retention. The cook's temperature was controlled using a FireBoard and a Guru fan.
 

JCAP

Smoking Fanatic
SMF Premier Member
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Joined Jun 12, 2019
I dig this cooker. Don't know if I'll ever get one but looks like a cool kettle! Nice food too!
 

retfr8flyr

Smoking Fanatic
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
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Joined May 20, 2013
How hard is the top of that slow roller to clean?
 

Alphonse

Smoke Blower
138
91
Joined Dec 1, 2019
How hard is the top of that slow roller to clean?
I find it pretty easy to clean it up with a wide putty knife. I scrape it off and then wipe it down with some disposable shop towels. One could put a shallow round pan on it to catch the grease but I have found the deflector plate collects and drops the grease into the fire very well.
 

Alphonse

Smoke Blower
138
91
Joined Dec 1, 2019
I adapted a Weber rotisserie to the Kettle Joe. Cut a few slots in the Weber ring to fit around grate supports in the kettle and adjusted the T-nut on the Kettle Joe's hinge locking knob.

Profile with the rotisserie in place:
PXL_20210321_171130658.PORTRAIT.jpg


The hinge adjusted up to allow for the rotisserie ring:
PXL_20210321_222757378.jpg


Shot of the install:
good shot of slot cut and rotisserie fit.jpg


Here it is at work on "Chickens on a stick":
Chickens on a stick.JPG


Yes, that chicken fat makes some smoke (of course smoke billows out the rotisserie rod penetrations):
Smoking!.JPG
 

hammer77

Fire Starter
73
47
Joined Jun 8, 2015
Very nice write up! I've had my eye on one of these for a minute now, came close to pulling the trigger twice. I mainly want to use it as a charcoal grill, might smoke with it every now and then. Just curious if you have any further thoughts now that you have had the unit for a bit.

Thanks
Dave.
 

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