Seasoning after curing and before smoking

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I find Hickory works best for me too. Sometimes Pecan.
I just smoked 2 bellies, 18 lbs in my smoke vault with just my AMNPS for 16 hours with both ends lit and one pellet reload during the period.

Sent by me from here.
So just an update.  I smoked my bacon using the AMAZEN tube smoker inside my Rec Tec smoker.  Temp was about 65-70 degrees throughout the smoke.  I used CookinPellets perfect mix pellets.  Smoked for about 11 hours.

I let rest in fridge afterward for a couple days, then in freezer for a few hours, sliced and vacuum sealed.

Took out a pack last week and cooked some up in the oven.

Unfortunately, it doesn't taste very good.  Seems like it's way too smoky, almost tastes like a campfire.

Could I have done something wrong while smoking?  We did have some sprinkles/light right during a few hours of the smoking.  Maybe it got too humid and that caused some type of problem?

My overall smoking time seems like it's on the lower end of what I have been reading on these forums, so I'm not sure how I could have over-smoked it...

blake, afternoon....    The meat must be at a temperature equal to  or just above the smoker temp so condensate does not form on it...   The meat should have a pellicle formed on it...   Dry the meat in front of a fan, on a wire rack, for an hour or so until it gets a tacky to dry surface..    The tube smoker puts out a lot of smoke..  too much for small volume smokers...   The Rec-Tec smoker could be  lacking on air vents so you may not have had enough air flow inside for the tube smoker....
I have a couple of AMNTS tube smokers too and they produce way too much smoke for cold smoking. I only use my AMNPS for cold smoking as it produces a much finer smoke - and even then it needs a good air flow through the smoker. I think it was probably a combination of too much smoke and a lack of air flow through the smoker.
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Dave and Wade, thanks for the replies!

Is AMNPS the snake tray?  Or is that something else?

I did dry the meat (in the fridge for a couple days, not with a fan) and it seemed like it had the tacky feel to it.  However, I did put it straight from fridge into the smoker, so the meat was definitely colder than the ambient temp when it went on the smoker.

So, maybe I had an issue both with condensate and also with too much smoke and too little air flow.

For my next attempt, if I let the meat sit at room temp with a fan, and then put it on the smoker when the ambient temp is lower, that should correct the condensate issue?

And for the smoke and air flow issue, do you think I could just prop the lid open a couple inches on the rectec?  Or should I also get an a-maze-n tray instead of the tube?  Should one or both of those together help my over-smoked issue?

Thanks!  I'm sure hoping next time turns out better, as it stinks to waste an entire pork belly...
Maybe I should rig up some type of mini computer fan or something to set inside the smoker to get the air moving?
Try the tube 1/2 full  ...   Laid on it's side half full...  see if it will burn like that...   That should reduce the smoke...   Cracking the lid might be the way to go also for more air flow..
Hi Blake

Yes the AMNPS is a snake tray. If you have not checked out Todd's site then take a look as it shows the difference. The AMNPS is better suited for producing smoke slowly at cool temperatures  (either inside the cold smoker or in an external mailbox mod to feed into a hot smoker) whereas the Tube smoker is better designed to be used inside the hot smoker at ~225 F.

From Todd's site he says that the AMNPS takes up to 11 hours to burn 15 ozs df pellets whereas the 12" Tube smoker takes up to 4 hours to burn 12 ozs (albeit at a higher temperature). When I first received my Tube smoker i did a side by side test with it against the AMNPS with the same weight of pellets and the Tube smoker did burn the pellets much faster and burned out in about half the time it took the pellet smoker.

You may find this video helpful as it shows an extended AMNPS in use and the amount of smoke it produces. 

To see this you need to skip through to about 7 minutes in.

Give Dave's suggestion of only half filling the tube a go to try to reduce the smoke from the Tube as it may work. It isn't something that I have tried. Cracking the lid could also help to reduce the smoke in the chamber by letting it escape but it may not do much for the actual flow of air. Again, it is something to try.

In my commercial style cold smoker I use a flue fan to ensure that the smoke and air is continually flowing through the chamber but I am not sure if this would be practical with the Rectec.

In the past I have even fitted "flue" fans to a Weber kettle to help improve the air flow when cold smoking

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I'll try the tube on it's side to see if I can get that to work, and if not I'll get a snake tray.

Should I perhaps try a fan instead of just cracking the lid?  Think something like this would work?  
Would I put that on the left side of my rectec and blow toward the right to push the air, or put it on the right side to pull it across?
I've tried PC (pitmasters choice) and hickory...    For bacon, I think hickory is really good..  PC is good but not "bold" enough for bacon... 

PC is my main go to wood for most everything else... it's mild and forgiving when adding to most all meats...
What Dave said. Hickory is it. Pc smells so good when smoking! This my set up. Get hickory from friends for trade of course. Keep up the good work.
All, just wanted to report back that I finished my 2nd attempt, and it worked great!!

What I changed:

After letting bacon sit to dry on a rack in refrigerator for a day, I think also took it out and let it dry at room temp for several hours with a tower fan blowing on it.

Filled my a-maze-n tube smoker only 1/2 full and laid it sideways and evened out the pellets and let it burn like that to hopefully better simulate a smoker tray.  This did seem to produce less smoke, but it also went out about 3 times and I had to re-light, and the last couple hours I just shook all the pellets down to the bottom and lit like normal so that it would stop going out as I was tired of having to relight it.

Cracked the lid of the RecTec about 1/2 to 3/4 of an in ch by wedging a pliers under the lid.  Also took my tower fan and placed it where it was blowing directly at that crack in the lid.

Smoked about 7-8 hours.  Outside temperature ranged from about 50 up all the way to 70 by the end of the cook.

Fried some up yesterday and it was awesome.  None of the nasty bitter flavor that I had the first time.

Thanks to everyone for the suggestions!
Bought my 3rd belly to get cured up soon.  All my other bacon is already gone.

I also bought a whole boneless pork loin for some canadian bacon.   Can I use the same dry cure that I have mixed for my canadian bacon as what I do for my belly bacon?   And is it the same cure/weight ratio or different?
Yep...  Same ratios, same cure mix...  If you like it, try it...    If your mix adds about 1.1 grams per pound of cure #1 or 1 tsp. per 5#'s, it can be used for anything you want to smoke...  You can tweak it for different meats by adding spices etc. and there's no need to adjust the mix..   weigh out the proper amount of mix for each piece of meat, add the spices and you are good to go... is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.