Standing tall and proud as the first of it’s kind, you’ll find the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Vertical Pellet Smoker.
With features like WiFi, smoke setting, jerky racks and sausage hangers, on the surface it looks like great value for money.
But, how’s the quality? What’s the performance like? And, how easy is it to clean?
We answer these questions and more in our Camp Chef XXL WiFi review to help you decide if it’s the right smoker for your backyard.
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Table of Contents
Quick Version of our Camp Chef XXL WiFi Review
If you want XXL pellet smoking, truth be told, there’s not a lot of choice but this Camp Chef model.
But, luckily for you, it’s a really great smoker.
A decent quality build, precise PID temperature control, separate smoke level settings and WiFi connectivity along with all the included racks and probes that come with it, make for one great value for money bundle!
You can’t grill on it. What it does do though, is give you over 2,400 square inches of space to smoke large cuts, smaller things like jerky, fish and vergetables, and, you can even hang sausages on the included hook system.
The 18 pound hopper will give you about 12 hours of unassisted low and slow smoking time.
Watch the progress from your smartphone via the WiFi. Just make sure you’ve plugged in the 2 included meat probes.
Easy to use and capable of doing a great job on your latest catch, meal, or at your next party, the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Vertical Smoker does it’s job big and without all the hard work of other types of smokers.
About the Camp Chef XXL Vertical Pellet Smoker
If you’re after a vertical-style pellet smoker, there’s not a lot of choice out there.
This XXL WiFi model from Camp Chef is one of the most popular on the market.
It’s been around for years. But, Camp Chef have continued to update it, adding features like a WiFi controller, PID for precise regulation and a separate smoke setting to make sure it keeps hitting the mark as technology advances.
The Camp Chef XXL packs a lot into it’s competitively low price!
Features of the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Pellet Smoker
- Powder-coated steel
- Coated steel grates
- 2408 square inch cooking capacity
- 18 pound pellet hopper
Ease of use:
- Digital PID controller keeps heat within +/- 5°F of your target
- WiFi for remote control from your smartphone
- 150 – 350°F temperature range
- Separate Smoke Number lets you choose smokiness independent of heat
- Externally accessible ash clean out system
- Window and door to empty pellet hopper
- Grease management system
- 4 standard racks, 3 jerky racks and 1 hanging rack with 12 sausage hooks
- 2 meat probes
- Built-in bottle opener
Construction and Build Quality
For what’s a relatively cheap smoker, the Camp Chef XXL is impressively built.
Made from powder-coated steel, the whole unit has a strong and sturdy feel to it. The pieces fit together nicely and smoke loss through the door is minimal (although you can add a gasket if you like a tigher seal).
The only real downside I would say about the build is the chrome-coated racks.
They look all good to start with and should hold up for a good long while. But, they’re just not quite as durable as enameled or stainless steel.
Worth mentioning, yes. Worth not buying because of this alone, I wouldn’t be put off.
They’re not exaggerating in saying that this smoker is XXL!
It’s really huge.
Most pellet smokers give you about 700 square inches of cooking space. But, the Camp Chef XXL gives you a whopping 2,408.
There’s 4 standard grates, 3 jerky racks (you can use these for other meats as well) and a sausage rack with 12 hooks. They’re all included with the base price and it’s all you should ever need to smoke pretty much anything.
Throw in large whole briskets, multiple pork butts, fish, jerky, sausages, or a mix of all of it.
To warrant getting this size (and the slightly higher pellet usage to heat the larger space), you’ll want to be cooking a serious amount of food at a time. So, it’s ideal for hunters, fishers, people with a large family, who entertain a lot, or, just have an impressive appetite.
In terms of hopper size, you’ll fit 18 pounds of pellets in the Camp Chef XXL.
At a rate of about 1.5 pounds of pellets per hour, a full hopper should last you around about 12 hours of low and slow smoking time before you need to refill.
There’s a pellet window to make it easy to keep an eye on your pellet usage.
And, while we’re talking about it, there’s also a pellet purge door that lets you empty the majority for storage or to change flavors.
Through the door alone, you’ll be able to empty about 80% of the pellets. The last 20% are too deep in there to pour out. You’ll either need to burn through these or suck them out with a vacuum.
There’s no point in smoking a lot if you’re not smoking it very well.
But, with a PID based temperature controller and convection fans to circulate the heat and smoke throughout, the Camp Chef XXL does a great job of smoking big.
They state that the temperature should stay within about 5 degrees of your target at all times. But, we find it to be more reasonable to expect slightly larger fluctuations of between 10-15 degrees.
It’s still super steady and is in no way a wild ride.
One other cool feature that only comes on a Camp Chef is that you can set the smoke level separately to the temperature.
Simply choose a setting between 1 and 10 and you’ll have that extra control over how much wood flavor your cook comes out with.
Other than that, thick smoke rings, decent bark, good moisture content and great taste is all easily doable on the Camp Chef XXL.
If you’re smoking in cooler conditions, we do recommend using the matching insulating blanket for this unit.
It’s not that it won’t still work. But, you will be burning through A LOT of fuel to maintain enough heat for smoking when the outside temperature drops.
As we’ve mentioned, the Camp Chef XXL comes with 4 standard racks, 3 jerky racks and the sausage rack with 12 hooks.
It also comes with 2 meat probes that hook into the control panel.
These will show you the internal temperature of the meat at any point in time without opening the door, letting the heat and smoke out.
Either press a button on the control panel, or, open the app to watch the progress and make sure you never overdo a brisket again. You can even set an alarm so you know when your meat has hit that perfect spot.
Cleaning the Camp Chef XXL WiFi
In terms of clean-up, Camp Chef have made this pretty easy too.
As always, it’s best to scrape down your grates after cooking, while they’re still a little warm (this is our favorite tool).
The Ash Cleanout System means you don’t need to vacuum out the firepot so regularly. Pull the lever and the bucket will release so that you can empty it and replace.
Then, every couple of smokes (50 hours is recommended), you’re going to be removing the grates, grease tray and heat deflector to give everything a good clean.
Scrape any excess grease off, vacuum out the firepot and replace everything.
It sounds like a bit but doesn’t actually take that long.
Pros and Cons of the Camp Chef XXL
What We Like About the XXL Vertical
- The uncommon vertical pellet smoker style gives a huge amount of cooking space
- Suitable for large cuts of meat as well as smaller things such as chicken thighs, jerky and sausages
- Comes with a wide range of racks and hooks for the ultimate flexibility in where you place things
- Doesn’t take up much space on the ground
- Set and forget technology
- Accurate PID automatic temperature control
- Separate setting for smoke level
- WiFi connectivity for remote control
- Includes 2 meat probes for precision cooking
- Large pellet hopper holds enough to burn for about 12 hours without a top-up
- Pellet hopper window to make it easy to see when to add more fuel
- Great value for money
What We Don't Like About the XXL Pellet
- Dedicated smoker only – the vertical style is too far away from the fire to get enough heat for grilling
- Can leak a bit of smoke around the door – Doesn’t bother us but it might others
Should I Buy the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Pellet Smoker?
The Camp Chef XXL Vertical is ideal for people who are looking for:
- A pellet smoker with REALLY large capacity (there’s not many on the market)
- Reliable temperature control thanks to the PID system and convection fans
- Want that extra control over how smoky their food is
- Like the idea of remote control via the WiFi
- Enjoy snagging a great deal!
FAQs About the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Vertical Pellet Smoker
How long can you smoke with 1 hopper load of pellets (18lbs)? The Camp Chef XXL is really big so it uses more pellets than usual to heat the larger area. 18 pounds should give you about 12 hours at 225 degrees with heavy smoke.
Is it easy to remove leftover pellets? Somewhat… The Camp Chef XXL WiFi Pellet Smoker has a hopper clean out shoot. Simply hang a bucket on the back, empty and re-lock. It’ll empty the majority and leave about 20% in there that are too deep down. To get rid of these, you’ll either need to burn through, or, use a vacuum to suck them out.
Is there a cover available for the Camp Chef XXL Vertical Pellet Smoker? Yes. Here’s a link to the XXL WiFi Vertical Cover.
Specs for the Camp Chef XXL WiFi Pellet Smoker
Barbecue type: Vertical pellet smoker
Barbecue material: Powder-coated steel
Grate material: Chrome-coated steel
Cooking capacity: 2,408 sq. in.
Pellet hopper capacity: 18lbs
Temperature range: 150-350°F
Fuel type: Wood pellets
Price guide: $
Dimensions: 55(H) x 24(W) x 15.5(D)
Warranty: 3 years