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wood or charcoal w/chips or?


Joined Sep 20, 2013
Hi all,

 I have been smoking exclusivly with pecan wood for the past 3 years. Great flavor, but my smoker oozes this black tar looking gunk that drips on the meat and I don't like it much.

 Should I revert back to using charcoal with wood chips.

Also, I use 2 cake pans under the meat with a little water in them for drip pans. Is the water causing some of the issue?


Master of the Pit
Joined May 12, 2013
Hello.  Nut wood can be oily but this doesn't sound right.  What smoker are you using?  Are you soaking the wood?  Well I guess not if you are also using it for heat.  I have never used just pecan but I did only used mesquite wood for years.  And you say the meat tastes fine, no nasty tastes like a build up of creosote?  Nut wood and moisture in the cook chamber???  
  Maybe??  I really don't see it; but I have been wrong before.  Unless you get better advice; here is what I think I would do:  Start again.  You gotta identify where the problem is since you say you don't like it, so start at the beginning.  I'll bet you never noticed you were getting to this point until you found, here we are.  Scrape out the black coating inside the smoker ( burn it out if a wood burner ).  Then clean really well.  Re-season and start over.  I would start with using pecan without water in the cook chamber.  TAKE NOTES OF EVERYTHING YOU DO.  After that smoke inspect the cook chamber.  Then add the water to the tray for the next smoke and TAKE NOTES.  Inspect the cook chamber afterwards and TAKE NOTES.   If you find it is pecan wood and water in the pans causes the problem, but that makes the food taste great ; then you will have to clean that smoker periodically.  Best advice I can offer. Maybe someone else will know better.  Keep Smokin!



Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Group Lead
Joined Feb 28, 2010
Sounds like you need to give that cooker a good burnout to get rid of the gunk. Seriously, stickburners need regular, thorough cleanings. I usually light a big charcoal fire in the cook chamber of my CG, others will use a weed burner(a big propane torch) to do a cleansing burnout.
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