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Best Vertical Smoker: Max Space, Max Performance

BEST SMOKE & GRILL

Oklahoma Joe's Bronco Drum Smoker
Oklahoma Joe's Bronco
4.5/5

BEST PELLET

Smoke Daddy Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Smoker
Pellet Pro 2300
4.7/5

CHEAPER PELLET

Camp Chef XXL Pro Vertical Smoker
Camp Chef XXL Pro
4.5/5

BEST CHARCOAL

MEADOW CREEK BX25
Meadow Creek BX25
4.7/5

CHEAPER CHARCOAL

Weber Smokey Mountain 18 Inch
Weber Smokey Mountain
4.8/5

BEST OFFSET

Dyna-Glo Wide Body Vertical Offset Smoker
Dyna-Glo Wide Body
4.3/5

As we all know, hot air rises. And, the cool thing about that is that vertical smokers are designed to make use of this law of physics to make meat that’s more tender, more juicy and more tasty. Not to mention that you get a huge amount of cooking space from a small amount of ground.

So, whether you’re just starting out in the world of smoking, or you’ve been giving hunks of meat the low and slow treatment for decades, there’s no denying that a vertical smoker is an awesome weapon when it comes to supersizing portions and flavor.

To make it easy for you to find the best vertical smoker for you, we’ve rounded up the top choices on the market today.

Here you’ll find all the info you need to decide which one is right for your backyard.

Just be warned, your family and friends will be begging you to smoke every weekend once they get a taste of your mouth-watering ribs, brisket or pork butt… but, that’s totally not a bad thing right?!?

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How We Tested the Best Vertical Smokers

A lot of fun was had while testing these (plus more) vertical smokers to put together this list of the best.

We assessed a number of different types of vertical configurations including drum, water, vertical pellet, bullet, and offset smokers.

Of course the more expensive models are naturally going to be better with higher quality materials used and more features. But, we tested a wide range of price points because you, and we, don’t always have the budget for the very best and really darn good can also be found at a lower price point.

Cooking jerky on the Camp Chef Pro XXL Vertical Pellet Smoker

All of the vertical smokers recommended here were assessed for the following factors:

Whether we were looking at the top of the line models or a very budget-friendly one, we carefully look at the build quality of every barbecue reviewed.

Here you’ll see notes on the thickness of steel used as well as other remarks like the quality of welds, fit of doors, and anything else of note that helps you assess how long each smoker might perform and last.

Whether it’s an automatically regulated pellet smoker, or a charcoal smoker that needs more babysitting, we tested it’s temperature regulation to see how well it holds a steady temperature.

This was done with either the MEATER Plus or MEATER Block thermometer for consistency. These have both been shown to be highly accurate thermometers that also record and graph the ambient temperature of any barbecue while smoking.

Read more about our experience with the MEATER thermometers.

It can’t make the cut as one of the best vertical smokers if it can’t smoke good food.

As such, we test a variety of cuts of meat on each smoker to see how the food turns out.

For consistency, we test brisket, pork shoulder, and pork ribs at a minimum. If the smoker in question is also recommended for dehydrating jerky, or something else more specific, we trial that too.

We use the same seasonings (Hardcore Carnivore is our current favorite), wrap at the same internal temperature, and otherwise follow the same technique, varying it only if needed because of the smoker type.

Some vertical smoker manufacturers really cram the grates in there vertically, making it look like a huge cooking capacity when in reality, you can only max the size out with thinner food like jerky, fish fillets, or sausages.

Because we’ve had our hands on these models, we’ll tell you if that’s the case so you can expect the capacity to be reduced if you’re smoking taller cuts like whole briskets or pork shoulders.

Please note that we have not included electric of propane smokers in this best vertical smokers review.

Although these two types of smokers are a vertical configuration, most people shopping for a vertical smoker are looking for a charcoal, wood, or pellet burner. As such, we have focused on those types in order to cover them in more detail.

If you are looking for one of the types of smokers not included here, be sure to check out our best electric smokers review or our best propane smokers review. Those type are covered extensively in each review to give you more information and choice.

Table of Contents

The Best Vertical Smokers: Our Top Choices

Use our experience to grab yourself a good one from this list of recommended vertical smokers. We’ve covered the main fuel types at a few different price points.

BEST SMOKE & GRILL

Oklahoma Joe's Bronco

4.5/5

BBQ type: Charcoal drum

Material: Painted steel

Grates: Porcelain-coated

Capacity: 9 hooks

Heat range: Smoke & grill

Dimensions: 30″ W x 43″ H x 25″ D

Price guide: $$

Model: 19202089

Warranty: 2 years

For a low to mid-priced barbecue, we really like the Oklahoma Joe’s Bronco and actually prefer it over some of the more popular vertical drum options.

Why you may ask? The Bronco is a really well designed unit that, unlike a lot of drum smokers, is well set up for grilling as well as low and slow smoking.

It comes with everything you need for smoking and grilling including a great quality charcoal basket, a standard 18″ cooking grate, and 9 hooks for hanging meat which multiplies the volume of this thing.

To grill, you simply raise the height of the charcoal basket and use the cooking grate in the top position so you’ve got grilling at a regular height. Because it’s charcoal, you’ve got excellent heat and it’s really like two barbecues in one.

Grilling on the Oklahoma Joe Bronco

But, we also appreciate that it’s NOT a fixed temperature smoker. Instead, you’ve got proper vents that are easy to adjust giving you more control over a vital part of your cook.

A full basket of charcoal sees us through about 10 hours of smoking time without needing to top up the charcoal. It’s not set and forget though. You will need to check on the Bronco periodically throughout your cook, making any adjustments to the air intake to help keep the temperature steady.

Oklahoma Joe Bronco Grate Capacity

In terms of downsides, the Bronco isn’t the best quality barbecue out there. We’ve had a few years out of ours so far but it won’t last forever. Also, our bottom air intake pipe does leak some grease. It’s not a major but has left a decent stain on our concrete. Using it with a patio mat would be a good idea if you’re worried about protecting your ground.

Pros
Cons
BEST PELLET

Smoke Daddy Pellet Pro 2300

4.7/5

BBQ type: Pellet

Material: Powder-coated

Grates: Stainless steel

Grilling: None

Capacity: 1,806 sq in

Hopper capacity: 30 lbs

Heat range: 150 – 350ºF

Dimensions: 15.5″D x 24″W x 55″H

WiFi: Yes

Price guide: $$$

Model:PGSBXXL

Warranty: 3 years body, 1 year other

It’s not the most normal looking pellet smoker out there because this isn’t your average pellet setup. The quality of the Pellet Pro 2300 is next to none.

The smoker body is made from 18 gauge double-walled steel giving you maximum heat retention, good performance in the cold, and the best fuel efficiency no matter what the weather is doing. The PID-style temperature controller does a great job of keeping the temperature within less than 10°F of your target. And, there’s a convection fan to distribute the heat and smoke evenly over the huge capacity.

Convection fan on Smoke Daddy Pellet Pro 2300

Included you’ve got three racks and a seven slot rib rack. You can add another three racks that there’s slots for. I wouldn’t rush out to buy more racks unless you do want to load this smoker up for jerky or fish fillets because the three rack setup is perfect for larger cuts of meat like brisket and pork shoulders.

Smoking on the Pellet Pro 2300

But, however you choose to set it up, this smoker can make some great food!

Yes, it’s more expensive than a lot pellet smokers or other vertical smokers. But, if your budget allows for it, for what you’re getting, it’s a worthwhile investment. This smoker should last for years. It’s a solid purchase and performer.

Pros
Cons
BEST CHEAPER PELLET

Camp Chef XXL Pro

4.4/5

BBQ type: Pellet

Material: Powder-coated

Grates: Stainless steel

Grilling: None

Capacity: 1,806 sq in

Hopper capacity: 30 lbs

Heat range: 150 – 350ºF

Dimensions: 15.5″D x 24″W x 55″H

WiFi: Yes

Price guide: $$$

Model:PGSBXXL

Warranty: 3 years body, 1 year other

For a good, all-round vertical pellet smoker the Camp Chef XXL Pro Vertical is impressive!

It’s not the cheapest model around, but you get so many features and a no doubt about it, massive 1,806 square inches of cooking space that’s wide enough to do ribs and whole briskets too.

Included with the price, you’ve got 4 meat racks, 3 jerky racks, and 12 hooks on a sausage rack for hanging. Just keep in mind that while you can max out the cooking space if you’re doing something short like jerky, fish fillets or wings, to smoke a brisket, you will need to take out some of the racks to create enough height.

Customizing the setup inside the Camp Chef XXL Pro Vertical Smoker

Nevertheless, we’ve never found ourselves short on space, and the 30 pound pellet hopper should give you around 30 hours of low and slow smoke time which should be more than you need as well.

In terms of smokiness though, that’s where the Camp Chef XXL Pro Vertical really shines through in our opinion.

It’s down and out ventilation does a great job of evening out the temperature on all of those racks. And, there’s this extra smoke box where you can throw wood chunks, chips or even charcoal to really customize your flavor.

Filling up the Smoke Box on the Camp Chef XXL Pro Vertical Smoker

Like all Camp Chef models, the XXL Pro even lets you set how smoky you’d like it with their unique smoke number setting. A lower smoke setting will hold the PID temperature tighter for less smoke and very regular heat while a higher smoke number will let the temperature swing more for greater smoke production.

But, the good things don’t just end there. The Camp Chef XXL Pro has WiFi for remote control too.

Camp Chef WiFi app operating the XXL Pro Vertical

The app works pretty well. When you plug the two included meat probes in, you can even see the internal temperature of your meat so you’ll know when it’s perfectly done without having to open the door and try to guess by having a sneak peek.

Quality-wise, the Camp Chef XXL Pro is decent but not the best. For it’s price, we’re more than happy with the build and performance of this smoker. It’s quite a rare setup that really maximizes space and will work for a lot of people.

Pros
Cons
BEST BUDGET PELLET

Pit Boss 5-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker

4.4/5

BBQ type: Pellet

Material: Powder-coated

Grates: Porcelain-coated

Grilling: None

Capacity: 1,513 sq in

Hopper capacity: 60 lbs

Heat range: 150 – 420ºF

Dimensions: 28″D x 29″W x 53″H

WiFi: No

Price guide: $$

Model: 77550

Warranty: 5 years

For a very competitive price, the Pit Boss 5-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker gives you a decently large vertical smoker in an average but decently built box.

Thanks to the PID temperature controller, this Pit Boss keeps a tight leash on the heat with fluctuations staying within about 10°F of your set target. There’s a fan that helps to move the heat and smoke around for a fairly even temperature distribution between all of the grates. And, it produces a good amount of smoke that’s well sealed in there for maximum flavor.

The reason we prefer this slightly larger 5-Series Pit Boss over the cheaper 3-Series is that it’s wide enough to fit your large cuts of meat. If you’re on a really tight budget, you’ll still get the same sort of performance out of the smaller model. But, just be aware that you’ll always have that size constraint.

In the Series 5 model, you’re getting a really decent 1,513 square inches of cooking space plus a large 60 pound hopper with purge. No matter what you’re cooking, that’s enough to handle the needs of most people.

Emptying pellets from the Pit Boss 5 Series Vertical Pellet smoker

The temperature range of this smoker is also a little hotter than other vertical options giving you a bit more versatility to move into the baking and roasting range. The vertical configuration still isn’t suitable for grilling though.

One meat probe is included. This plugs directly into the control panel so you can cook to temperature rather than time. There’s only one probe port though so unfortunately, you can’t add extra probes which would be nice in a smoker of this size.

Pit Boss 5-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker Loaded Up

The main reason this unit is so much cheaper than the others we’ve recommended is that the quality isn’t as high.

It’s your average, mass produced vertical smoker. Look after it properly and it should go strong for quite a few years. But, the steel is thinner, it’s not as well made, and you’re more likely to run into problems with the electronics but you do have a decent 5 year warranty.

Still, if it’s this or not buying a smoker at all, the Pit Boss 5-Series is still a reputable smoker. You can smoke a lot of great food on here, it’s easy to use, and most importantly, it’ll get the job done.

Pros
Cons
BEST CHARCOAL

Meadow Creek BX25

4.7/5

BBQ type: Vertical charcoal

Material: Painted steel

Grates: Stainless steel

Capacity: 604 sq inch

Heat range: Smoke

Dimensions: 55″H x 36″W x 30″D

Price guide: $$$$$

Model: BX25

Warranty: 25 yrs

The Meadow Creek BX25 gives you that old school quality and durability it’s hard to find these days in a practical and easy to use design that charcoal smokes food excellently.

With absolutely nothing electronic, thicker steel, a reliable temperature gauge, and huge wheels, this smoker is set up to last a lifetime.

In it you’ve got 3 stainless steel cooking grates offering you a total of 604 square inches of cooking space. If that’s not enough and you’re doing flatter foods such as jerky, sausages, or ribs, you can buy and add two more racks in the extra slots.

The large charcoal box holds all the coals together while helping the fire to run cleanly and clean up easy by letting the ash fall through. And, the spin vents at the bottom of the firebox make controlling the temperature really easy.

Charcoal box and grate in the Meadow Creek BX25

If you want to make the Meadow Creek BX25 more set and forget, it’s made with a built-in Guru adapter so you can slot in the BBQ Guru for automatic temperature regulation that works very well.

And, if you’ve already noticed the unusual metal adapter on the side, that’s to sit an already included 5 gallon water tank that gravity feeds the water tray so you literally don’t need to do a thing if you’re using this Meadow Creek along with the BBQ Guru.

Wet smoking with the Meadow Creek BX25

If you want to dry smoke, which we often prefer, you don’t have to use water in this vertical smoker either. It has no problem running dry.

And, it’s cold weather performance is spot on too. There’s actually 1″ thick insulation between those steel walls which does a really good job of holding in the heat.

Although a taller person would have to bend down a little to use this, the height’s not bad for most people with the wheels and feet picking this Meadow Creek up off the ground a little.

Overall, this is an excellent smoker that we feel is well worth the price. Yes, it’s more expensive than you’re average. But, you’re not getting anything average with the Meadow Creek BX25. This is one top performing smoker that’s good enough for competitive use but fine for the backyard too.

Pros
Cons
BEST CHEAPER CHARCOAL

Weber Smokey Mountain

4.5/5

BBQ type: Charcoal bullet

Material: Enameled steel

Grates: Plated steel

Capacity: 481 sq inch

Heat range: Low to high

Dimensions: 19″D x 21″W x 41″H

Price guide: $$

Model: 721001

Warranty: 10 yrs bowl, 5 yrs plastics, 2 yrs other

Not only is this smoker one of the most iconic designs, it’s also one of the best rated smokers of all time. Made from a respected industry leader, and available for a very affordable cost, the Weber Smokey Mountain is a sure-fire winner if you want a vertical charcoal smoker without having to spend a lot.

Solid, durable and capable of exceptional results, this unit has been thoughtfully designed to make smoking easy, although this model is still very hands on.

Inside the Weber Smokey Mountain

The body is made from hard-wearing, porcelain-enameled steel and the elongated kettle body with quality dampers make temperature and smoke control easy. But, you will need to monitor the temperature every hour or so, making adjustments and adding fuel as required. The WSM is not a set and forget smoker.

The separate fuel door makes it easy to add charcoal and wood without letting a good amount of heat out. And, the double-layered, stainless steel racks hold a good amount of food.

In terms of exactly how much you can cook on one of these, there’s three different sizes ranging from the very portable 14.5″, to the mid-sized 18.5″, and the actually very large 22.5″ pictured below.

Smoking on the Weber Smokey Mountain 22

The number refers to the width of the cooking grate. The larger you go, the more fuel you will use (but the more food you will cook). So, just think about how much you’d like to cook at once and go for that. I’ve cooked on the 14.5 inch for a family of 5 with plenty of leftovers with no problems.

Overall, I’d say the Weber Smokey Mountain isn’t anything special. But, it’s a well-priced, solidly performing, tried and true barbecue that’s backed by an impressive 10 year guarantee and that’s not bad at all.

Pros
Cons
BEST OFFSET

Dyna-Glo Wide Body Vertical

4.3/5

BBQ type: Offset

Material: Painted steel

Grates: Chrome-coated

Capacity: 1,890 sq inch

Heat range: Smoke

Dimensions: 21″D x 43.3″W x 50.2″H

Price guide: $$

Model: DGO1890BDC-D

Warranty: 1 year, paint 90 days

This offset smoker isn’t the best quality out there. But, it’s one of the few that has a vertical configuration to give you a huge amount of space, it’s cheap, and it works pretty darn well.

The steel is pretty thin, it will leak some smoke, the ash tray does clog up on long cooks, the dampers aren’t the easiest to use, and the paint on the firebox will most probably flake off within a few cooks.

But, if all of that hasn’t got you scrolling to the next option, the Dyna-Glo Wide Body can keep a fairly steady temperature, and, although basic, really can make some decent food.

Dyna-Glo Wide Body Offset Smoker

We like that it comes with a porcelain-enameled charcoal box that holds the coals together for a good burn. The six vertical racks pull out easily. The wide version also comes with a rib rack and sausage hanger, and is wide enough to fit ribs and large briskets.

Rib rack and sausage hanger in Dyna-Glo Wide Body Offset

If you go the Dyna-Glo I do recommend buying a wireless smoker thermometer with an ambient temperature probe, or replacing the built-in gauge because it’s not that accurate. Knowing exactly what temp your offset is at makes all the difference when it comes to cooking great food and is often an area where beginners fall short.

Some people do prefer to upgrade the gasket for a better seal as well. In our experience, it’s not essential. The smoke leakage is within a normal and okay amount without it. But, if you do like a tight seal, just plan for it.

But, for a cheap offset smoker that holds a lot of meat, we feel that the Dyna-Glo Wide Body is a worthwhile buy, even with it’s flaws.

Pros
Cons

What is a Vertical Smoker?

A vertical smoker is any type of barbecue that utilizes a vertical configuration to maximize cooking space, minimize floor space, and use the laws of physics to effectively and efficiently cook meat.

For the purpose of this review, we have included a wide range of types of vertical smokers including water, bullet, charcoal, vertical offset, and vertical pellet smokers.

Each of these has a similar setup to this:

A vertical smoker, also known as a vertical water smoker or bullet smoker, is a type of barbecue smoker that is designed to cook food in a vertical, cylindrical chamber. It typically consists of stacked sections, each serving a specific purpose in the smoking process. Here are the basic components and features of a vertical smoker:

The bottom section of a vertical smoker houses the heat source which could be charcoal, wood, or hardwood pellets depending on the smoker type.

Regardless, this is where the heat and smoke is generated before it moves into the cooking chamber.

In many vertical smokers, above the firebox you’ll find a water pan.

This can be used to hold water, helping to regulate the temperature inside the smoker and prevent food from drying out. But, instead of water you can use a flavored liquid like juice, beer, or even whisky. It’s also alright to leave water trays empty and dry smoke in them. This is also a popular way to use vertical smokers.

The cooking chamber in a vertical smoker sits above the water pan.

Here you’ll find a series of racks or grates where you place the food that you’re smoking. Some vertical smokers also come with hooks you can use to hang your food vertically. This is a great way to maximize the cooking space even further.

On a manually adjusted vertical smoker like a charcoal drum, or offset, you’ll find at least two dampers that you can adjust to push the temperature up and down as required.

How Does a Vertical Smoker Work?

Vertical smokers are a very efficient way to cook food.

Heat naturally rises, eventually hitting the top of the smoker, and somewhat circulating back down, creating convection currents of heat and smoke that evenly and efficiently cooks food.

Some vertical smokers also contain a fan which helps the air and heat to circulate creating a more even temperature from rack to rack.

Advantages of Using a Vertical Smoker

Vertical smokers are a popular barbecue type because of these useful advantages:

Because it’s easy to go up, you naturally get more cooking space in a vertical smoker than you do with any other type of barbecue. This is also the case if the vertical smoker you’re looking at comes with hooks for hanging meat.

Hanging ribs, whole chickens, sausages, or even briskets lets you cook a lot in a relatively small amount of space.

Compared to other types of smokers like an offset or regular pellet smoker, vertical smokers don’t take up a lot of space in any backyard.

This makes them ideal for anyone who has a smaller yard or desk space. But, also means they’re ideal to place alongside a grill or other smoker if you have multiples.

The vertical design of one of these types of smokers naturally allows for more even distribution of heat and smoke throughout the cooking chamber.

This helps ensure consistent cooking temperatures across all levels of the smoker, promoting uniform cooking of the food.

The water pan, typically located above the heat source, serves to add moisture to the cooking environment.

This helps prevent the food from drying out during long smokes, resulting in juicier and more flavorful dishes.

Although not all vertical smokers are portable, some are designed with portability in mind.

They can be lightweight with handles on the sides, designed to be picked up and put in the trunk of a vehicle for camping, tailgating, beach trips, or just taking to a friends house.

Disadvantages of Using a Vertical Smoker

Nothing’s ever 100% perfect. Using a vertical smoker comes with these disadvantages:

Most vertical smokers are dedicated low and slow smokers only.

Their vertical configuration with most of the racks being located quite a way from the firebox means that there’s not enough heat there to successfully grill.

That being said, we have recommended one vertical smoker here that can be set up for grilling as well if you want one that nails both of these jobs, scroll to the top.

Without a convection fan, some vertical smokers do measure different temperatures grate to grate.

This can be used as an advantage to zone your cooking based on your meat time. Or, it can be a disadvantage when you’re cooking a single type of meat and the brisket on one rack is done before another.

We recommend using a wireless meat thermometer to help keep an eye on hot spots. That way if some of your food is done before the rest, you can grab it out before it overcooks, and get to eat it sooner.

What to Look for When Buying a Vertical Smoker

Regardless of how expensive a vertical smoker is, either buy from this list, or look for the following features to help to make sure it’s a good one:

Vertical smokers do somewhat rely on having reasonably thick metal sides to hold the heat in and create an even temperature distribution in the vertical space.

This is particularly important if you want to cook during cold winters. Some vertical smokers are even insulated to offer better fuel efficiency, and stable heat in all weather.

So that a vertical smoker holds the heat and smoke in well, you want all the pieces to fit together nicely so that there’s no gaps for the good stuff to escape.

In a charcoal or wood based vertical smoker where manual temperature adjustments are needed to be made, you’ll have dampers or air intake valves that help you to set the temperature.

To make this job as easy as possible, you want quality dampers that stay in place when you fix them and ones that open up enough to create good airflow so the fire has ample oxygen to burn cleanly for good quality smoke.

Larger smokers use more fuel to run. So, bigger isn’t always better.

Think about how much you’ll be cooking on a regular basis before you commit to a particular smoker.

If you want to entertain occassionally and don’t think you’ve got enough space to do so, you can cook cuts of meat like a brisket or pork butt that can serve more people per inch of cooking space than something like burger patties or sausages.

Do you want to take your vertical smoker on the go?

If so, look at if it’ll fit in your vehicle and how heavy it is. Also think about how long it’ll take to cool down before you can load it. Thicker steel will take longer to cool than a cheaper model in this case.

Always look at how long your warranty period is and what is covered so you know what to expect if you do have any issues. This is particularly important for smokers with electrical components like vertical pellet smokers.

FAQs About the Best Vertical Smokers

Vertical smokers can be better than a regular, horizontal smoker but it depends what you’re after.

Vertical smokers offer the maximum amount of cooking space per square meter of floor space they take up. They also harness the power of convectional cooking to smoke evenly throughout the vertical chamber for consistent and repeatable results.

Conversely, vertical smokers often leave you working quite close to the ground with racks down very low which can be difficult for some people.

For smoking a lot of fish, we actually like the Big Chief Electric Smoker. It’s very affordable, and lightweight. We use this purely as a fish smoker so that we can keep the smelly stuff in a smoker of it’s own.

Because it’s cheap and easy to move in and out of the garage, it’s not expensive to have a dedicated fish smoker and simply to set up and pack away.

For more info about the Big Chief, check it out in our best electric smokers review.

Most vertical smokers cook evenly because that natural convection of heat and smoke circulates and recirculates the good stuff around the vertical cabinet space.

Some models do have an uneven temperature distribution from one grate to the next. Others have a convection fan inside to help the hot air circulate properly.

You don’t have to use a water pan in a vertical smoker although most vertical models do have space for a water pan.

My best suggestion is try it with a water pan and try it without to see what you like the best. You’re the pitmaster after all, and like all good barbecue topics, there’s people who feel strongly for and against using one.

You might even find that you like using a water pan to smoke some foods and not others. It’s all up to you.

Inside a vertical smoker, the meat either hangs on hooks or sits on a series of vertical cooking grates. Both configurations work well although you might prefer one over another.

Most vertical smokers are not made for grilling.

Because the heat source sits at the bottom of what’s usually a large cooking chamber, the heat isn’t high enough or direct enough to grill or sear well.

That being said, there are some vertical smokers that have been designed to grill as well.

Our favorite smoke and grill vertical smoker is the Oklahoma Joe’s Bronco Drum. Scroll up to read more about this affordable, versatile, and very decent barbecue.

You can use charcoal in a charcoal vertical smoker. It’s a great fuel source for this type of smoker and does create an even and stable heat environment that can successfully be used to low and slow for hours without having to top up the coals.

Check out our favorite charcoal vertical smokers in this review above.

We have used vertical smokers that are hotter at the bottom where it’s closest to the heat source, and vertical smokers that are hotter at the top where the lid of the smoker holds in the heat before exiting through the chimney.

To find out where the hottest grates are on your vertical smoker, simply set up an ambient temperature probe on all of your smoker racks to see where’s hot and where’s not.

The MEATER Block is a great thermometer for doing this because each of the 4 probes has both an internal and ambient temperature probe so you can effortlessly measure this while you’re smoking meat.

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Kate Brown, the founder and voice behind Burning Brisket, is not your typical pitmaster or restaurateur. Her expertise in barbecue grew from a humble desire to cook exceptional meals for her family. From overcoming burnt brisket mishaps to establishing her boutique cattle ranch, Kate shares her passion to help 'ordinary' individuals cook extraordinary barbecue, believing that simplicity often yields the best flavors. Kate is committed to making great barbecue accessible to all with the right resources and some tasty practice.

About Burning Brisket

Burning Brisket is one of the leading, independent authorities on all things barbecue. Family-owned and run, it's our mission uncomplicate the art of smoking to help you enjoy making incredible food at home for your family and friends to create memories over.

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