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smoking bacon on a UDS??


Joined Apr 4, 2011
I've been reading through the posts about making my own bacon, and am curious about how the temp is kept down if using a drum for this purpose.  Do you just light a smaller amount of lump?  

Does the flavor wood have to be broken into smaller pieces, or are the normal fist-sized chunks okay?  

Would something like the A-Maze-N smoking box work in a drum as the only heat source, or is the space too big? Since the meat is cured, the minimal temp increase from one of these shouldn't be a problem, would it?  If putting it in the bottom of the drum creates too big of air chamber for it to be effective, what if I set the AMN on the lower rack and the bellies on the upper rack?  Or put a large pizza pan on the lower rack to limit the air flow, then set the AMN on the pizza pan?  If using an AMN in a drum, does the air flow still have to be monitered as usual?

Sorry for all the questions, just trying to figure it out.  I'll be unemployed in about 10 days, and don't want to waste any money on something that won't work.

Hopefully somebody can steer me in the right direction.



Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Group Lead
Joined Mar 6, 2009

You can do any of the things you mention.  You can even build a fire in another box and connect to the drum smoker with a piece of Air conditioning plenum.  The most important thing is to keep your temps low in the smoker, I shoot for under 100 degree because the fat in the bacon renders out between 110 and 120.  Any higher then that and you start to cook the bellies, which is ok also,  just not what we do when you cold smoke.

You can use any size of wood chunks that will allow you to keep the low temps.  I know people that will get an electric hot plate and old pie pan filled with wood shavings or chips.  Cover with aluminum foil punched full of holes to keep from burning to fast.

Remember you don't want thick white smoke if it can be avoided, just a good smell coming out of the smoker.

Good luck, just ask if any additional questions



Smoking Guru
Staff member
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Dec 29, 2009

Al is right, for cold smoking bacon, you want to keep the temps low, so the fat does not render out.  I've smoked bacon at higher temps before with good success, but prefer cold smoking.

Guys with UDS should be along soon to help out.

I'm thinking you would not want to fill the entire UDS with smoke.  Maybe wrap a wire rack with foil and place it about 1/2 way up, to block off the bottom 1/2 of the UDS.  THE AMNS would work good for 1/2 the UDS, but really does not produce enough smoke to fill the entire UDS.

Rumor has it the guy making them is coming out with a version that burns pellets as well as sawdust, and it's supposed to produce HUGE smoke!



Fire Starter
Joined Apr 6, 2009
That's certainly a friendly way of saying "use the search function, dummy!"...  Thanks for the links.  I posted this and then got tied up at work (employer going out of biz; long days and cranky people--the customers were even worse!
.  They paid us well for sticking around, so it was worth it), and totally spaced it. Lots of free time now, so I'll get more serious about it.  

I had an idea for a smaller unit than the UDS for cold smoking.  I'll start another thread on it.

When I get things going, I'll post w/pics.

Thanks for all the info!

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