There’s a whole heap of ‘wireless’ meat thermometers out there.
But, most wireless meat thermometers are still connected to the base unit by a… da da da da… wire!
So, if you don’t want to be messing around feeding things through probe ports or leaking smoke through a lid that’s meant to seal, the MEATER is the original meat thermometer that actually doesn’t have any wires at all!
Simply stick it in your meat, hang the charging block on the outside of your barbecue and you’re good to go.
Using Bluetooth and/or Wi-Fi, truly wireless meat thermometers are just starting to creep into the barbecue industry more and more. But, the MEATER is the original wire-free product.
Is there anything else that beats the MEATER? Can you justify it’s much higher than a wired meat thermometer’s high price?
In this MEATER review, we dive into how these stand-alone temperature probes work, how accurate they are, and, what the app’s like plus more.
Basically, we share everything you need to know to decide if the MEATER is worth your money or not.
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Table of Contents
The Quick Version of Our MEATER Review
Yes, they are more expensive than the alternatives.
But, it’s so simple to use, gives a reliable reading, and, the full graphs, history and alerts make the whole smoking process just so easy.
Because the whole MEATER range is truly wire-free, it’s also the only meat thermometer you can use when you’re doing a rotisserie chicken.
The very limited range on the Original MEATER means that, while it can do grilling with the barbecue lid off, it’s just not suitable for smoking. And, it’s well worth the little bit extra to get the MEATER Plus model that has 5 times the range, up to 165 feet.
If you’re smoking more than one cut of meat, which most people are, the MEATER Block is the best value option. Not only does it come with 4 probes for less than you’d otherwise pay, there’s also a built-in screen so you don’t have to use it via the app.
As for negatives, just be aware that there’s a minimum depth you need to insert the probe into the meat. It’s marked on each probe and you’ll need to go sideways on thinner cuts like steak.
The maximum ambient temperature of 527°F is also a bit limiting when you’re grilling on an open flame. And, you’ll need to leave the tip out if you’re wrapping in aluminum foil.
Overall though, the MEATER range is definitely the top quality meat thermometer out there. It works flawlessly the majority of the time. With a long battery run-time and efficient charging dock, it’s seriously hassle-free and takes all of the guess-work out of smoking without having wires to mess around with.
It’s 100% our top pick!
Features of the MEATER Original, Plus and Block Meat Thermometers
- Stainless steel and ceramic probes
- Dual sensors in each probe measure internal and ambient temperatures
- Built-in charger in storage dock (powered by AA or AAA batteries depending on model)
- Engraved numbers to identify probes in MEATER Block
- Real bamboo wood block with magnetic backing to stick to your barbecue
Ease of use:
- Guided cook system works off USDA recommendations, but, can be set to your own targets as well
- Estimates how long you’ve got left
- Alerts you 5 minutes before your meat should reach your target temperature
- Also tells you how long your meat should rest based on it’s internal temperature
- Dishwasher safe
- Longer range in Plus and Block models boosts connectivity up to 165 feet
- Works with Alexa
- MEATER Block can be setup with the Cloud to be used anywhere you’ve got internet access
- If you use the MEATER Plus with a second device, you can use WiFi to connect too the probe from anywhere that’s got internet connection
About Apption Labs
Apption Labs is the tech start-up company that designed and brought the MEATER to market.
Instead of just focusing on building gadgets to sell, Apption aimed to create a complete solution to the everyday problem of dirty, messy and limiting wires on barbecue thermometers.
Half way through 2021, Traeger bought Apption Labs in a deal that made sense for Traeger’s history of innovation and growth.
Since then, Traeger has kept selling MEATER thermometers like it’s a separate brand (only you can buy them on the Traeger website too).
But, they have also merged the two concepts with the introduction of the Traeger X MEATER Wireless Meat Thermometer.
This product works just with Traeger’s latest touchscreen display grills so that you can monitor your cook wirelessly but have the thermometer work in with the main controller on your pellet grill as well.
What Is The MEATER Wireless Thermometer?
There’s no more cutting your steak in half to see if it’s cooked to your liking. No more overdone brisket, dried out ribs or trying to check if those chicken juices are running clear.
Instead, you can select USDA-safe presets based on how well you want a particular type of meat cooked, or, use your own, the MEATER will monitor the internal temperature of what you’re cooking and tell you when it’s ready.
Simple as that! Yes, it can make you a better cook. And, yes, it makes cooking less stressful.
How Do the MEATER Thermometers Work?
Each MEATER probe actually has two sensors in them.
The pointed end (that you insert into the meat), gives you the internal meat temperature while the ceramic coated tip simultaneously measures the ambient temperature of your grill, oven or smoker.
The real-time data is then sent to the MEATER app using Bluetooth or WiFi (depending on the model) that then shows you both temperature readings along with an estimated remaining cook time and a graph of how the temperature has been progressing in your cook so far.
What's The Difference Between The Original MEATER, MEATER Plus and MEATER Block?
With the Original you get one probe and a charging dock for it.
It’ll give you readings up to a maximum range of 33 feet if you’re grilling, using it in the oven, a rotisserie or a kamado. But, with the steel sides of a kettle grill or smoker, the range is reduced to a maximum of 10 feet.
It’s still got all the same features as the more expensive models. The lower price is because it doesn’t have the same technology giving it an extended range.
The newer MEATER Plus model, includes one probe and it’s charging dock. But, although it looks almost exactly the same as the Original MEATER, it’s got a built-in Bluetooth extender to boost the range up to 165 feet with any type of cooker including smokers.
The MEATER Block comes with 4 probes so you can monitor multiple cuts. But, it uses built-in WiFi to give you the extended 165 foot range, plus, the built-in MEATER Link so you can see your progress and use the app from anywhere that’s got WiFi by using the Cloud connection.
The MEATER Block also has a screen on the charging block so you can view your cook without using a smartphone. But, you’ve got to keep it within 10 feet to do so.
Unboxing and Setting Up the MEATER Plus
There really isn’t much to unboxing any of the MEATER thermometers.
They come beautifully packaged so you wouldn’t even need to wrap it as a gift. And, it comes with a battery so you simply take it out of the box, pull the tab out and it’ll start charging.
Give the probe a few hours to charge, download the app and you’re good to go.
All of the MEATER models also come with a short instruction manual (if you’d even call it that).
Have a quick read. Or, just open the app and it’ll walk you through exactly what to do.
Quality of the MEATER
There’s no doubt about it that the MEATER is a top quality product.
Straight out of the box, you’re impressed with the finishing of the charging block. It’s got nice touches like the burnt-in logo and the magnetic battery cover backing.
The meat probes themselves are made of high-quality stainless steel and the black handle tip is ceramic.
We’ve been using ours for well over a year, very regularly now and the MEATER always cleans up perfectly. There’s absolutely no rust or damage to the steel. There’s no discolouration either. Both the probe and the charging dock look just like they did on day one.
Probe Accuracy and Speed
Since you’re going to be relying on it, having a meat probe that reads accurately is of course, very important.
MEATER claims to be calibrated within +/-1°F which is impressively accurate. But, how does it really perform?
In our own tests, the MEATER stood up really well.
We tested it using a variety of other wireless meat thermometers, instant-read thermometers and in boiling water. Every time, the internal meat temperature reading it gave was consistent and more accurate than most of the competition.
Our testing showed that the MEATER Plus was at most +/- 5°F out from the actual vs temperature reading.
That’s darn good in our books and one of the most accurate out there.
In terms of speed, we have no complaints there either. You get a reading within a few seconds and you’re good to go.
Something to mention though, is that when you’re looking at the ambient temperature reading, it’ll read low at first.
Your grill thermometer and probes you set up separately give you an air temperature reading that’s far away from the meat. But, because the MEATER’s second sensor is only a few inches away from your meat, it will be affected by the colder meat temperature at the start of your cook.
After a bit of time, the ambient temperature should read fairly accurately as well. Just be aware that you’re going to get a falsely low reading if you’ve stuck the probe into a cold slab of meat and thrown it on to the grill or smoker.
Just check the temperature gauge on your barbecue if you want to see if it’s up to temperature at the start of the cook.
The Sacrificial Potato Trick
To measure the ambient temperature of your barbecue, you unfortunately can’t just put the whole MEATER on your grate and leave it to give you a reading.
The more sensitive internal meat probe (the sharp end) can only handle a maximum temperature of 212°F which you’ll probably quickly exceed even if you’re cooking at low and slow temperatures.
Once the probe part gets over that temperature, you’ll risk damaging the whole thermometer, and, it’s just too expensive for us to ignore MEATER’s advice and go with a ‘she’ll be right’ attitude… your probe probably won’t be alright if it gets too hot.
So, if your barbecue doesn’t have a temperature gauge (or a reliable enough one) and you want the MEATER to give you an accurate ambient temperature from the get-go, you can use this little trick.
When you’re firing your barbecue up, grab a potato, stick the MEATER in there and put it in your ‘cue.
Because the potato will have been sitting at room temperature, it won’t have that cold pocket of air around it like your meat will so you’ll get an accurate ambient temperature straight away while protecting the more sensitive internal meat probe part.
Once you’ve got your temperature stabilized, simply move the MEATER over to your meat.
Just be careful, the ceramic probe tip will get hot!
You can even bake your potato up too.
The MEATER App
Wireless thermometer apps can be pretty rubbish. But, not this one.
The MEATER range is premium. And, they’ve put the money into developing a great app that’s easy to use and looks top notch too.
First-off, connecting to the app is simple and works for us first try every time.
You literally pull it out of the charger to turn it on, launch your app and then follow the on-screen steps to set up your cook.
There’s a thorough selection of pre-set cooking temperatures. It’s not just the basic beef, chicken or pork. The MEATER app dials them down to type of cut and how cooked you’d like it.
Select a MEATER target temperature recommendation, USDA endorsed targets, and, if you’ve got your own thing down pat, you can just go ahead and enter your own temperature too.
After you’ve set a target for your internal temperature, you’ll see the current temperature and ambient temperature readings. And, after a bit of time, MEATER will estimate how long you’ve got until dinner’s ready.
In our experience, the estimates are fairly accurate. And, it’ll keep adjusting based on the ambient temperature and how the internal temperature your meat is progressing.
In the MEATER app, you can also set timers and alarms for minimum and maximum internal and ambient temperatures.
If you want to be reminded to wrap the meat at a certain time, or, put the sides in the oven, you can set an independent alarm, labeled as whatever you want.
It’s designed to be a complete solution to cooking timing and it does a darn good job of it.
If you do have the MEATER Block with multiple probes, you can see all four readings all at once.
They’ll be labeled by the probe number and meat cook type (or whatever you want) so you don’t have to try to remember whether you stuck the #3 in the brisket or the pork.
The Original MEATER will give you about 33 feet of range on an open-topped barbecue, grill, or in your oven. In a smoker or kettle grill with the lid closed, you’re down to 10 feet of range.
The most popular MEATER Plus gives you 165 feet. We’ve found that to be pretty accurate, even through walls and haven’t needed to extend it unless we’re leaving the house.
Then, there’s the MEATER Block which gives the same 165 feet of Bluetooth range. But, has a built-in WiFi extender so you can use it with the MEATER Link or Cloud for remote access anywhere you’ve got internet access.
The probe itself still uses Bluetooth to send the data to the Block. The Block is then connected to WiFi where you can see your progress from anywhere in the world.
Using the MEATER Link to Extend Your Range
For a longer range, you can set up the MEATER Link with any of the MEATER probes.
The Block that comes with the MEATER Block acts as the second device and has a built-in MEATER Link. So, you won’t need a second smartphone to boost your signal from.
Connect both devices to the one probe, leave one at home and you’ll still be able to see your barbecues progress and recieve alerts via the internet. There’s nothing complicated about it.
But, if you can’t convince your wife to leave her phone at home for the MEATER Link, remember you can always go the MEATER Block to give you WiFi access without needing a second device.
Watch the video below for a step by step guide on how to set up the MEATER Link.
Maximum Temperature Tolerance
With two parts to it; the ambient temperature probe and the internal meat temperature probe, there’s two different maximum temperatures you need to be aware of when you’re using the MEATER.
Firstly, the hottest environment you should be putting your MEATER into is 527°F (that’s 275°C).
That’ll definitely handle all your low and slow smoking needs. It also easily covers anything you’ll be baking in your smoker or oven. And, it’s also going to cover some grilling applications too.
We are a bit cautious using the MEATER when we’re open flame grilling or searing because we don’t want the hotter flare-ups to damage the probe. It is an expensive piece of kit.
Then, the maximum internal temperature you should be cooking your meat to is 212°F (or 100°C).
We smoke meats pretty close to that temperature. But, you shouldn’t need to go over it for anything you’re cooking.
A well-done steak maxes out at 160°F, chicken at 165°F, salmon 145°F, and brisket at 195°F.
With those maximum temperatures in mind, what can you actually use your MEATER for?
Well, most things you want to do on your grill, smoker or in the kitchen.
The MEATER is ideal for low and slow smoking, high-heat grilling, baking, roasting, barbecueing and braising. You can also use it in an air-fryer.
But, be aware that you cannot use the MEATER in a deep-fryer, as a candy thermometer or for sous-vide applications. It is not fully waterproof.
Can I sear with a MEATER probe?
The maximum ambient temperature of 527°F/275°C means that the MEATER isn’t suitable for high-heat searing.
Exceeding the maximum suggested temperature would risk damaging or breaking the probe.
Instead, try reverse searing where you use the probe to cook your meat first at a lower temperature. Then, once an ideal internal temperature has been reached, take the probe out and sear the outside for a minute or two to get that nicely grilled crust.
If you’ve never tried reverse searing before, you’ll actually get better results because you’re making sure the inside is cooked just how you like it and won’t be left underdone.
Being a truly wireless meat thermometer, charging is part of it. But, MEATER have made it totally hassle free by making the storage dock the charging station as well.
So, any time a probe is sitting in it’s dock, it’s charging from the batteries in it.
MEATER claim you’ll get about 100 charges off of one set of batteries. A charge lasts approximately 24 hours so, it’s pretty efficient.
As for the stated 100 charges, we haven’t quite got there.
The first battery in our MEATER Plus needed changing after about 8 months of very regular use. For us that’s probably about 50-60 charges so not bad even though it’s a way off what MEATER suggested.
You shouldn’t be flipping through batteries every week or two regardless.
There’s also an alternate USB port on the MEATER Block for really long cooks. We’ve never used it because the batteries have always been sufficient.
But, if you’re doing really long cooks, ran out of battery in the dock, or, just want to use USB power, you’ve got that option with the MEATER Block too.
Issues With The MEATER Thermometers
As with any good product, it’s not perfect. And, Bluetooth naturally does come with a few issues…
Firstly, the Bluetooth connection on the MEATER Plus will cut in and out if you wrap your meat and probe inside aluminum foil. The foil naturally interfers with the range.
A work around for this is either you use barbecue paper instead of foil (we prefer it for most cuts of meat and it promotes better bark formation). Or, you simply make sure the ceramic tip of the MEATER is sticking out of the foil.
That goes for if you buy the 2 Probe MEATER Block as well. The 2 Probe version is just designed to be a cheaper alternative to the regular Block, not to be able to expand on from having the Original or Plus probes.
You could see it or gift it to family or a friend. But, you really won’t be needing it anymore.
Basically, if you smoke multiple cuts of meat at the same time and need to monitor the progress of them all, just get the Block from the start!
The last negative of the MEATER thermometers that we will mention but isn’t a huge one is the minimum probe depth.
You do have to insert the probe up to the ingraved line which is no problem if you’re smoking a brisket. But, means you’ve got to go sideways in things like a piece of salmon or a steak.
If the probe isn’t all the way in the meat, it might get damaged because the heat tolerance on the internal part of the probe isn’t as high as at the tip of the probe.
Warranty and Customer Service
All MEATER probes are covered by a 1 year limited warranty. The brand has a good reputation for customer service so we’d be pretty confident that you’ll be okay if you do have any problems within this time.
There’s also a pretty extensive library of FAQs on their website you could try if you are having any problems before contacting MEATER directly.
Cleaning the MEATER Probes
If you’ve ever used another ‘wireless’ meat thermometer, you’ll know that cleaning them can be a pain. You can’t put the wires in the dishwasher and the grease gets all mucky in the webbing of the cables.
So, not having any wires on the MEATER makes things a heap easier!
But, here’s where the real joy lies… They’re also dishwasher safe!
That officially makes them the easiest meat probes to clean. And, if the block gets dirty, give it a wipe down. It’s like a bamboo cutting board.
Pros and Cons of the MEATER Wireless Meat Thermometers
What We Like About the MEATER Wireless Thermometers
- There’s absolutely no wires getting in the way
- Measures the internal and ambient temperature in each probe
- Has a wide variety of preset targets. But, also lets you set your own easily
- App is easy to use
- Automatically calculates expected cook time based on performance
- Gives you a 5 minute warning before it’s time to take the meat out
- Also tells you when the meat has rested for long enough
- Accurate temperature reading
- Works with Alexa and Apple Watch
- Efficient charging in storage case
- Can be set to °F or °C
- Dishwasher safe
What We Don't Like About the MEATER Wireless Thermometers
- Limited wireless range, particularly on Original MEATER. Grab the MEATER Block with built-in WiFi MEATER Link if you need longer distance
- There’s a minimum depth you need to insert the probe to. So, if you’re doing something thin like steak or ribs, you’ve got to go sideways otherwise the probe might get damaged (the meat side can’t handle as high temperatures)
- The maximum ambient temperature means the MEATER isn’t ideal for searing. Consider reverse searing with the MEATER instead.
- Aluminum foil messes with the signal. If you’re wrapping your meat, use bbq paper instead, or, leave the probe tip sticking through the foil
- The Original MEATER and MEATER+ are NOT compatible with the MEATER Block. So, if you want more probes later on, or to upgrade to the unlimited range of the WiFi Block, you can’t just grab a 2 probe Block and use it with your existing probes. You’re upgrading your whole system.
Our Verdict on the MEATER Wireless Thermometer
If you’re after a high-quality meat thermometer for grilling, smoking, or using in your regular oven, the MEATER is our absolute go to!
With zero wires to contend with, it’s super simple to use, reads very accurately, and, is much better quality than a lot of competitors.
It’s also one of the only solutions to continuously monitor your meat in a rotisserie because there’s not a lot of good quality wire-free options on the market.
The only major consideration when you’re bying the MEATER is it’s range.
The Original, in our opinion, is only good for grilling because as soon as you close the lid on a smoker, your range drops to a mere 10 feet.
The Plus model doesn’t cost much more and gives you an extended range of up to 165 feet and is suitable for using with any type of smoker or barbecue.
Then, if you’re smoking more than one cut, there’s just no beating the MEATER Block. You get 4 probes with the one charger and it’s got a screen so you can operate it without your smartphone as well. It’s also got built-in WiFi connectivity so you can monitor your progress from anywhere with an internet connection. And, there’s no moving a single probe between different cuts of meat mid-cook.
The MEATER thermometers are more expensive than most other options on the market. But, they are without a doubt, the best.
Regardless of which model you choose, we feel that the quality, convenience and ease of use you get with the MEATER IS 100% worth it.
It’s definitely a must-have accessory for smoking, grilling, or the food-lover who values precision with ease.
Other Alternatives to the MEATER Thermometers
The MeatStick X
- Longer bluetooth range
- Slightly higher maximum ambient temperature
- Can connect to 8 probes vs 4 with the MEATER
- Suitable for sous-vide, deep-frying as well
- Not as accurate as the MEATER
FAQs About the MEATER Wireless Meat Thermometer Range
Is the MEATER worth the money?
The MEATER is one of, if not the most expensive meat thermometer out there. It’s also the most accurate, the best quality, and, has the most intuitive app compared to other totally wire-free products.
So, if you’re after the best, yes the MEATER is worth the money on it’s price tag.
And, if you want better value, the MEATER Block gives you 4 times the probe plus the unlimited range of the built-in WiFi connectivity for not even 3 times the price.
Which MEATER thermometer is the best?
If all you’re doing is grilling without the lid on and you’re right by the bbq or have a really small house, the Original MEATER with it’s maximum of 33 foot range can do the job.
But, if you’re smoking or barbecuing with the lid on and want to be able to see what’s going on when you’re further away from your ‘cue, you’ll need to go the MEATER Plus at a minimum.
It’s built-in Bluetooth repeater gives you up to 165 feet of range. You can connect it to the Cloud and see your cooking progress by using a second device and your internet connection.
The top of the line MEATER Block is clearly the best thermomter in the MEATER range in terms of both ease of use and value for money.
It’s unbeatable value and gives you that peace of mind that it’ll always work, even if you build that big dream house one day or end up owning a lot of land.
How accurate is the MEATER thermometer?
MEATER claim their thermomters are accurate within +/- 1°F. In our independent testing, we found the MEATER Plus to read within about 5°F of what we know to be true.
That’s close enough and the discrepency is small enough for us to say that the MEATER thermometers are one of the most reliably accurate out there.
Can I use my MEATER in the oven?
The MEATER is ideal for using in your kitchen oven as well. Simply place the charging block nearby and you shouldn’t have any connectivity issues.
Just be sure not to exceed the maximum ambient temperature of 527°F which most ovens don’t even get to anyway.
Is the MEATER suitable for long smoking sessions?
The whole MEATER range is designed for long smoking sessions. The battery lasts up to 24 hours on a full charge. We’ve seen it go 30 hours without dying.
What is the difference between the MEATER and MEATER+?
The MEATER has a very limited range of up to 33 feet when using it on a gas grill, kamado, rotisserie or your regular kitchen oven. Inside a smoker or a kettle grill with the lid on, your Bluetooth range will reduce to about 10 feet.
That means you won’t be able to move your viewing device (smartphone) further away than that without it disconnecting.
The MEATER+ has a built-in Bluetooth repeater.
This boosts the range up to 165 feet, giving you good access within your house and the ability to use it in a smoker without a hassle.
How many MEATER probes can I use at once?
Is there a 2 probe option for the MEATER?
Can I use the MEATER in a deep fryer?
You can’t submerge the MEATER probes, they’re water resistant, not waterproof. But, you can use MEATER in an air fryer as long as the maximum temperatures are respected.
Can the MEATER go in an air fryer?
Yes, you can use the MEATER probes in an air fryer. Check out MEATER’S Air Fryer Fish and Chips recipe.
Does the MEATER work without WiFi or an internet connection?
How long will one charge of the MEATER last?
The MEATER should last at least 24 hours on one charge. This makes it ideal for very long and overnight smokes.
Do you have to pay for the MEATER Link or MEATER Cloud?
Using both the MEATER Link and MEATER Cloud are free services for all MEATER owners.
You’ll just have to sign up for a MEATER Cloud account to use the service as your data will be stored online.
Does MEATER work on Apple Watch?
Users spoke, MEATER listened and now you can check on your meat directly through your Apple watch.
Does the MEATER work through foil?
Can you use the MEATER in ribs?
Is the MEATER dishwasher safe?
Yes, yes, yes! The good folks at MEATER made sure you could just throw your MEATER probe in the dishwasher once you’ve finished your cook.
This makes it the easiest meat thermometer on the market to clean!
Is MEATER Made by Traeger?
In July 2021, Traeger aquired Apption Labs, the company that designed and brought the MEATER range to the market.
So, yes, Traeger now own MEATER.
But, they continue to sell the MEATER thermometers under their own brand as well as through the Traeger website.
Traeger have also developed a collaboration product with MEATER that lets the wireless thermometer technology work seamlessly with Traegers touchscreen display grills. They’ve called this product Traeger X MEATER.
All MEATER Probe Specs
- Bluetooth LE 4.0 wireless connection
- Maximum internal temperature: 212°F (meat)
- Maximum ambient temperature: 527°F (cooker)
- Stainless steel and ceramic construction
- Water resistant and easy to clean
- Dishwasher safe
- Rechargeable: Over 24 hours of continuous cooking
- Dimensions: 130mm length and 6mm diameter
- MEATER Block has numbered probes for easy identification
MEATER Original and Plus Charger Specs
- Store and charge your MEATER probe
- Magnetic backing: Attach anywhere
- Charges MEATER up to 100 times with one AAA battery
- Real wood to match any kitchen or outdoor decor
- LED indicator to show battery state
- Dimensions: 157mm L x 37mm W x 28mm H
- MEATER Plus has built-in Bluetooth repeater extends range up to 165ft
MEATER Block Charger Specs
- Built-in WiFi repeater extends range over your home network
- Directly connects to the MEATER Cloud for on-the-go monitoring
- Store and charge your MEATER probe
- Charges MEATER using 4x AA batteries
- Power alternatively using Micro USB for long cooks
- Real wood to match any kitchen or outdoor decor
- OLED display with touch capacitive control to cook without the app
- Max outdoor operation temperature: 140°F
- Dimensions: 132mm L x 39mm W x 157mm H