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Smoking Multiple Meats - Where to Place?


Joined Nov 22, 2013
I am planning to smoke both fish and chicken thighs. Is there any information on what location is the best place for different meats within the smoker? I have read that poultry should be on the bottom. Is that always the case? I don't want drippings from one meat to ruin another (if that is possible).

First time smoking so would appreciate assistance.


Master of the Pit
Joined May 12, 2013
Hello.  Poultry ALWAYS on the bottom.  Food safety thing.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!



Smoking Fanatic
Joined Jan 13, 2013
What kind of fish? I'm my experience, I've found that fish will impart it's fishiness on EVERYTHING else in the smoker, even if it isn't a real fishy fish, like salmon. Ask my husband; he makes the best salmon (pork) butt ever!! It wasn't overly apparent right out of the smoker smell-wise but twenty minutes later, oh my. But you could taste it immediately... Might wanna think twice before putting them in a smoker together. I would do your chix first, then the fish. Re-season your smoker prior to next use.


Joined Aug 25, 2013
kdquades, I have done and continue to do salmon and chicken in the same smoker. A New Braunfels.

Don't let one drip on the other. If you have room, put them both on the same rack. Fish doesn't take

long. I've never had cross taste problems.


Thread starter
Joined Nov 22, 2013
Thanks for the information. I'll be sure to always put poultry on the bottom.

Decided NOT to smoke both the fish and chicken in the smoker at the same time this time around. This is my first smoke and so far it has not gone very well. Issues getting the temperature up to where it needs to be at. 32 here in Nebraska today and I obviously don't know what I'm doing. I'll have to chalk this one up to a learning experience, put the smoker away until Spring and try my luck all over another time around.


Smoking Fanatic
Joined Nov 16, 2007
glad you came to your decision.  Chicken should be smoked at a higher temperature otherwise it gets soggy.  Fish should be done at a lower temperature.

You didn't tell us what type of smoker and wood that you're plan on using.  That really makes a difference.  For fish, I would choose a mild wood like Alder  but for chicken, I would choose apple.

If you're using a Masterbuilt smoker as many here do, I would cook it at  275* until 160*, then finish it off on my grill to get a nice crisp.

You gotta give more details.  But good luck on your smoke.  Here's the biggest key, don't over think it--it's not brain surgery.  Just food over fire and wood.


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined Sep 30, 2010
As stated by Smoke..... I would not smoke fish at the same time as other meats. I don't smoke fish at all in a smoker that will cook other meats or items. The taste and smell I find always stay in the smoker well after the cook.

Top to bottom for meats:

Beef (130)
Pork (140)
Poultry (165)

Basically the way it is decided is by the minimum safe to serve cook temp.

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