Newbie Smoker

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Original poster
Oct 12, 2016
I am smoking my first chicken this weekend.  We bought a smoker at a garage sale that is full of years cooking grime on the inside.  My husband says that I should not clean it off.  Is that correct and is it safe?  Thanks for any help.
SOrsucci, welcome to SMF!  Be sure to stop over at Roll Call and say "hi" to everyone.  That's where folks look for new members.

A certain amount of buildup in a smoker is good, but it is usually smoke related caked on the top and sides of the smoker from grease that has mixed with the smoke.  It helps seal the smoker. 

If the smoker hasn't been used in a long time though, it can become loose and start looking flaky, like it is going to fall off onto the meat.  If that's the case use a grill brush to scrap off the loose stuff, then rinse it out of the smoker.  If there is a greasy looking buildup in the bottom of the smoker's cooking chamber from old fat drippings, go ahead and wash/scrub that out too.

You may get some more ideas here too.

Hope that helps.

Be sure to use the search feature to get some ideas for tasty, smoked chicken. 

Have fun!

I would just add to scrub the grates. They need to be clean.

After you have everything cleaned I would fire it up empty, & run it at 275-300 for a couple of hours with wood for smoke.

Then it will be ready for your chicken.

Al is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

Hot Threads