Setting up the WSM 22.5 for a jerky smoke...need advice

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
Nov 18, 2010
Gainesville, FL
so i've smoked tons of butts and briskets on the WSM and know how to get the heat and maintain it, but not i'm going to try my first jerky and i want to make sure i get it right.

i've got a marinade (with tender quick) picked out and i'll be using 4lbs of thin sliced Eye of Round.

from what i've ready i want a temperature range of 120-140...what is the best way to accomplish this in the WSM?

when doing long slow cooks i do the minion method...should i do something similar but with less charcoal and only a small amount of lit coal? should i close the vents all the way except for the top one?

any ideas of how long this process will take?

any advice will be great!
I have a WSM i have not tried jerky on it yet but i think you have the right idea. I would put less unlit charcoal in also less lite.   think i would start with the vents  little past half closed with the top vent wide open. I would let it come up to 100F than start backing vents more in till i got it stable leaving the top vent open.. make sure you don't put water in pan.. Again i have not tried this yet just think this is the way i would do it i think i would start with maybe 3 or 4 lite charcoal.

 I am sure there will be someone along that has done this on the WSM.. Good luck.

Hey Doug,

I have an 18" WSM that I use to dry stuff in, this is what I have learned, MM using less charcoal after some time will ignite more charcoal than is needed as the lit coals spread outward, taking the temp past the low temp necessary for drying, ...arranging fist sized lump charcoal, each one laying on the next one, in a circle on the fire grate and just lighting the end and let it burn it's way around works well, however, you have to experiment before trying to dry something to find out how to attain the correct temp.

I use this method to dry jalapenos and the temp is constant, for jerky you need to raise the temp gradually so somewhere you will probably need to have two pieces of charcoal burning and possibly three to have the correct temp for jerky, I was amazed with my WSM at how well it held a low temp, the key is finding out how much burning charcoal is needed for the temp required, ...but that's all part of the fun in this hobby of ours.

I'm a newbie on jerky, but don't you have to take it to 160°?

I'm looking forward to your Q-view.

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