Do you think you can’t get a mouthwatering, smokey barbecue flavor using a gas grill?
Using a smoke box might just be the easiest way yet (not to add affordable and easier!) to make your grilled food taste even better.
So How do you use a smoker box on a gas grill?
Simple. To use a smoker box on a gas grill or charcoal grill simply preheat the gas grill on high for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, load the dry wood chip of your choice into the smoker box ( (I always recommend starting with a half-filled smoker box). Now place the smoker box close to the heat source: over the top of the burners of a gas grill.
Once the smoker box starts giving off smoke, turn the gas burners down to a regular cooking temperature and put the food on the grill and enjoy smoky-flavored food.
This grillcuisines.com guide will help you learn all about:
- How to use a smoker box on a gas or charcoal grill.
- Basics of choosing which one to pick and how to fill it up with wood chunks or chips.
- The benefit of using dry versus wet wood chip methods of smoking, and more!
Table of Contents
WHAT IS A SMOKER BOX FOR A GRILL AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
A smoker box is a metal container that holds wood chips, chunks, or pellets to produce smoke for flavoring food.
They allow you to use wood chips either dry or wet, which are placed on the smoker box grate and heated by the fire.
The smoke from these chips infuses with the food, adding a fabulous smoky flavor without investing in the smoker.
You can use them for almost anything from fish to veggies, and even eggs.
Related >> Best Healthy Low Carb Smoked Recipes
The smoker box has been designed to keep the heat in and it will work on any type of grill. It is made from durable stainless steel and aluminum construction so it can withstand heavy-duty use.
There are many different types of smoker boxes and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
There is an endless choice of smoker boxes to suit your personal needs, whether you’re looking for something small and lightweight or if you want something more substantial.
Some smoker boxes have lots of holes in all the sides, while others just have them at the top. There are also open-top smoker boxes.
The shape of them is usually either cylindrical or rectangular or v-shaped.
Types Of Smoker Box
The material used to make a smoker box is one of the most important considerations. A smoker box can be made of stainless steel, cast iron, or even aluminum.
Stainless steel has been the most common material used in making smokers because it has many benefits such as retaining heat well, resisting rust, corrosion, and staining.
Try to find a steel smoker box that is the thickest and sturdiest. The smoker box should also provide consistent smoke so you don’t have to worry about anything messing up your food.
These steel-made smoker boxes can last for many years.
Cast Iron Smoker Box
A Cast iron smoker box is less popular and cheaper than stainless steel, but it’s more durable than any other material.
A cast iron smoker box can be a wise investment, lasting for years to come when maintained properly.
It’s worth noting that it does warm up more slowly than some other types of smokers, meaning that the smoking chips work at a slower pace.
Disposable Smoking Trays
There are also disposable smoking trays or Instant Disposable Smoke Box Cans that can turn any gas grill or charcoal grill into smokers instantly.
You could try one of these convenient disposable smoking trays that already have wood chips in them- these are perfect for one-time use and are good for experimenting with beginners.
These disposable smoking trays are great for people who live in apartments, lack outdoor space, or prefer to smoke indoors.
You can purchase smoker boxes from almost any department store, and you’ll find many of them to be found in an “outdoors and/or patio” section.
HOW TO USE A SMOKER BOX ON A GAS GRILL (6 STEPS)
When I first started using a smoker box, I was definitely overwhelmed and didn’t know where to start. Where do I put the smoker box?
What type of wood chips should I use?
How big should the smoker box even be?
However, using smoker boxes on a gas grill is pretty straightforward.
All you have to do is place the smoker box on the grill and add your favorite wood chips or other smoking material.
Step 1: Preheat Gas Grill To Use BBQ Smoker Box On Gas Grill
Before you start cooking and smoking, it’s important to get the grill warmed up. For my grill, I use all burners and set. Preheating the gas grill before putting the smoker box will help the wood chips ignite faster.
If the grill is too hot and you’re worried that the wood chips might catch fire too fast, you can turn off one or more burners to make it a little cooler.
This will lengthen the time it takes for the wood chips to ignite.
The goal here is to even out the heat to save time when you finally start smoking.
Step 2: Season Your Smoker Box
When you buy a new smoker box, there can be there may be chemical leftovers from the manufacturing process.
These residues can potentially affect the flavor of your food. It is advised to first season the smoker box to avoid this.
Seasoning a smoker box is simple. First wash the smoker box with soap and water to remove any residue, let it to dry completely.
Now place the smoker box on the grates for already heated grill for about 20-30 minutes. This will help to burn off any remaining chemicals and make your smoker box’s surface non stick.
When seasoning the smoker box, you should leave the cover of the gas or charcoal grill open.
If you close the lid of the grill there is a possibility that chemicals you’re trying to burn off the smoker box may settle or stick to the inside of grill’s cover.
Step 3: Selecting Wood Chips And Setting Up The BBQ Smoker Box To Use On The Gas Grill
We need to select our wood chips before using the smoker box on the gas grill.
There are different types of wood chips available, like Mesquite and Apple. You also have your blended woodchips, with a variety of different woods, and they are specifically blended to add the perfect flavor to whatever you’re cooking.
Related >> 8 Best Wood Chips for Smoker
If you’re new to smoking, your sampler packs are probably your best bet because they give you a variety of different flavors.
You can also make a DIY smoker box without buying anything by using aluminum foil to create a ball with wood chips inside them.
You can use aluminum trays with a lid too. Simply poke holes in the top of the lid to let the smoke escape.
When you have something to hold the wood chips, load the wood chips of your choice into the smoker box and close it up.
Step 4: Place The BBQ Smoker Box On The Gas Grill
Now be sure to place the smoker box close to the heat source, which is close to the burners in case of a gas grill.
For charcoal grill users, make sure to place the smoker box on the coals with a grill grate on top, and always use a good quality brand of charcoal for smoking.
You’ll need to adjust the gas grill burners on the highest setting, and it might take up to 10 minutes for the smoker box to get hot enough and the chips to start smoking better.
It’s important to keep the lid down, especially for the first 15-20 minutes. This will prevent the smoke and heat from escaping.
Step 5: Turn The Gas Grill Burners Down to Regular Cooking Temperatures of 225 and 250 Degrees Fahrenheit Once The Box Begins Smoking
Once the smoke starts to produce, you can start the grilling. You can now turn a gas burner down to regular cooking temperatures.
For the smoking process to be able to take place, there will remain an adequate amount of heat throughout this process.
STEP 6. Place Your Food On The Grill And Keep The Lid Close
Once most of the smoldering chunks begin to sizzle, your cooking can usually begin after a few minutes.
Place your food directly on the cooking grate of your gas grill and close the lid. If you need to cook your food at an extremely high direct temperature, use the side burners next to the smoker box burner.
The cooking time can vary depending on how long you cook it and what type of meat you’re using.
The amount of time will range between 1-2 hours per pound.
You can get Smoking Times and Temperatures guide.
You may need to check your smoker box occasionally to make sure it’s still smoking. If you run out of wood chips and the smoke stops flowing, simply add more wood chips and keep cooking!
I always use heat-resistant grilling gloves while working with a smoker box or grilling.
Grilling gloves are a great way to protect your hands while working with the BBQ smoker box or grilling. They come in a variety of materials such as silicone and leather, so you can find the perfect pair to suit your needs.
You don’t need to do this for the entire cookout, but continuing to check & add can give you high-quality meat.
I’ve found that the meat I cook doesn’t absorb much more smoke after it’s reached 160 degrees.
How to Use Smoker Box On Weber Gas Grill?
Where To Place BBQ Smoker Box On Gas Grill?
To produce a lower puffing, slower-burning smoke for 35- 40 minutes, you’ll need to slowly swelter the wood chips on a grill/bbq.
You don’t want the wood chip to catch on fire by putting them on a direct burner flame.
The placement of the smoker box on a grill is important because if you place a smoker box on an open flame, then the wood chips will catch on fire.
Smoke production takes some time so place the smoker up above the heat source and not right on it!
You can also place a smoker box on top of a charcoal grill over the grill grate. However, you should keep its distance from the heat source because you may end up burning your wood chip if you the smoker box is too close.
First, place the smoker box on top of the burner that produces the most heat. The back burner in gas grills provides higher heat.
Once the smoke starts to form in the smoker box, you should move it away from your air vents and from the direct heat source.
Don’t move the smoker box closer to the grill air vents because the smoke may escape without warming up your food.
You can also put the smoker box near the meat on the grill grates, but this way you may lose lots of smoke before it reaches the meat. For optimal smoked meat flavor, it’s best to put the smoker box below the grate.
It’s also alright to place the smoker box on the grill grate of a gas grill. You’ll want to make sure you’re getting smoke up near your meat, so a common technique is to close off the air vents with foil or a piece of wood.
Do You Soak the Wood Chips Before Smoking?
There are two schools of thought on whether to soak wood chips in water or not.
One school of thought believes that wood chips should be soaked in water for a few hours before being used. Because it helps the wood chips to dry out evenly and provides more dense smoke and keeps the meat moist.
But not everyone recommends soaking wood chips in water or other liquids. Some say it’s not worth the time, while others will say that you should only do that if you’re looking for a specific type of flavor in your smoke.
Here is a complete article on Do You Soak Wood Chips?
FINAL WORDS: HOW TO USE A SMOKER BOX ON GAS GRILL
This article has summarized all the ins and outs of how to use a smoker box on a grill and convert any grill, whether it is charcoal or gas, into a smoker.
Smoked meat can be a great way to spice up your cooking, which can be done with minimal effort. A smoker box is a great tool to have in your kitchen.
It doesn’t require any electricity and can make the most beautiful smoked meat you’ve seen anywhere with some creativity.
Now you know how to use a smoker box on a grill, you can try out different meats, wood chips, and smoking methods to find the one that is most enjoyable for you.
Best Smoker Box For Gas Grill
At A Glance Our Top Pick For Best Smoker Box For Gas Grill
How long do wood chips take to smoke?
The length of time it takes for wood chips to smoke will depend on many factors such as their type, temperature, and other factors like moisture content.
Wood chips start to smoke within 15-20 minutes, depending on factors such as the type of wood chips being used & how hot the grill is.
How long does a smoker box last?
Smoker boxes warp after some time. Warping can occur on most metal containers after repeated exposure to high heat.
The Cave Tools smoker box is made from extra-thick, heavy-duty stainless steel that significantly reduces warping. This smoker box comes with a lifetime guarantee.
If you’re not satisfied, you can always return your smoker box for a full refund.
How to use a wood chip smoker box on a charcoal grill?
Using wood chip smoker box on charcoal grill is not different. Most people understand that smokers have a different designs for these two types of grills.
There are simple techniques to use the wood chip smoker box in your charcoal grill- you just need to experiment and find out what works best for you!
With a propane grill, you can change the setting of burner knobs instantly. While smoking with a charcoal grill you have to manage the charcoal.
One common way to use one’s grill is by piling charcoal on one side and below the smoking box.
How to clean the smoker box?
Never clean a smoker while it is hot or put water on it. Applying water to a stainless steel box can warp it.
Use heat-resistant grill gloves or tongs and remove the smoker box from the grill. Let it cool before cleaning it.
If the smoker box has creosote you can use this method to clean it
How To Clean Creosote From Smoker/Pellet Grill-4 Best Ways
I am a writer, editor, and publisher of Grillcuisines.com – an online blog dedicated to sharing grilling tips, accessories, and recipes to encourage more people to get outside and grill.
I’m off to find out the different types of grill foods, their seasons, and how to conduct outdoor cooking properly. I’ll also show you some of my grill-worthy cooking tools & accessories!