How To Season An Electric Smoker – Its Importance & Exclusive Tips

If you’re a meat-lover, then you must have an electric smoker for smoking different types of meats and various vegetables for dinner with friends and family members. Just like a brand new car, you may be itching to start using a new electric smoker, but before you start smoking your meat, you’ll need to season your brand new smoker first.

So as you’ve unpacked your new electric smoker, you may be excited to cook your first meal. But wait! Just like all other smokers, electric smokers also need to be seasoned. If you don’t know how to season an electric smoker, then you can collect all the necessary information from this article including the steps involved and why it’s important to do its seasoning.

How To Season An Electric Smoker- A Step-By-Step Guide

Seasoning an electric smoker isn’t hardcore but it can be confusing for you if you haven’t learned the basic guide properly. Here you can find and apply all steps to season your smoker with maximum convenience.

Proper Assemblage before seasoning:

A little assembly is always required when they’re taken outside of the box. Though your smoker will may be pre-assembled but try to make sure that all screws are tight, or is there any part missing, broken, or potentially faulty.

For this whole assembly process, keep the manufacturer’s instructions in hand to do it properly.

Wash Inside & Outside of Smoker:

You may hear from a lot of people to wash your smoker from inside and outside with warm soapy water, but I don’t find this step as much necessary. The reason is during seasoning all of the non-essential materials will burn out without needing any cleaning and washing.

But if you want to do it, then it’s not a horrible idea. You can easily do it with the help of mild soap, a sponge, and warm water. Wash all the inner and outer surfaces with soapy water and then rinse them completely. Let it dry on air or use a dry cloth to dry it completely.

Note: Before jumping to the next step, make sure your smoker is fully dried.

Apply Oil to the Inside Surfaces:

Oiling the inside of a smoker is very important. To do it more efficiently, remove anything you can such as racks, drip tray, wood chip tray, and water pan. Apply oil on every inch of your smoker’s interior in a thin layer. You’re not going to pool up oil or drip oil inside the smoker, rather apply it properly in a thin layer.

Do not apply oil on heating elements because it can ignite during smoking and can damage the heating element. Remember you just have to apply oil on the inner walls of the smoker, racks, drip tray and water pan do not require oiling.

Turn on Smoker:

After oiling your electric smoker, put all the things back in their place and plug in your smoker to a power outlet to turn it on. We’d highly recommend not to use an extension cord when firing up your smoker.

If somehow you’re intended to do it, try to use a heavy-duty cord or one with an earth pin.

Open all Vents:

Open all the vents fully and leave them open during the whole seasoning process. By doing this, all burnt-off residue vapors will evaporate without being hung inside the smoker.

Set Maximum Temperature:

Set the maximum temperature available in your electric smoker. In most cases, it’s 275 degrees Fahrenheit. But whatever model you have, set the maximum possible temperature on it.

Let it heat up for 3 hours:

After setting the temperature, leave your electric smoker running for about 2-3 hours. The more time will you spend to season your smoker the better it’d be. You can exceed the time up to a certain limit but any less will not be helpful to meet the needs.

Add wood chips in the wood chip tray:

There may be a question in your head during seasoning that either you should add wood chips or not. But the idea differs among manufacturers because some recommend it and some do not.

Such as Masterbuilt says ‘yes’ when it comes to adding wood chips while Charbroil says ‘no’.

I’d recommend leaving your smoker running for 2 hours and in the last hour add wood chips and leave it for almost 45 minutes. In this way, you’ll follow both methods or instructions from the best smoker manufacturers.

Finish Seasoning Process:

Right after 3 hours of running your electric smoker at 275 degrees Fahrenheit, turn it off now. There’ll be a lot of hot smoke present inside the unit, so open it carefully. Let it cool down and empty the wood chip tray of ashes and wipe all the bars with the help of a dry piece of cloth.

Here is the list of our top-rated electric smokers under 500

Why Should You Season Your Electric Smoker?

Buying an electric smoker is a good thing, but knowing how to maintain it and season it properly is a much better thing. Though the whole process of seasoning takes time you’ll be astonished by the after results and taste of food. You won’t regret it.

Here are some of the major reasons why you should season electric smoker:

To avoid any kind of dirt:

Even if your smoker is brand new, but there can be a lot of dirt present inside of it that can either be from the factory where the product was formed or all the way from transportation to the store to your home.

Though there’d be some cleaning done before reaching the unit in your hands different activities leave traces on the unit from various cleaners, solvents, industrial oils, adhesives, paints, and dust.

Seasoning for the first time will help you to get rid of all the unnecessary and harmful materials. It will definitely increase the effectiveness and efficiency of your smoker.

To extend its lifespan:

The process of seasoning electric smokers helps to rust-proof it. Though there are a lot of chemicals involved in keeping it maintained the moisture produced during smoking would lead to rusting.

When you season it, a coating from carbon will prevent moisture from getting to the metal. It will keep your smoker clean and your unit won’t die soon.

To get Healthy Meat:

When it comes to dealing with better health, then cleanliness is the key to it. Seasoning and cleaning the product will lead to delivering meat with delicious taste, and healthy. A clean and safe environment will ensure to protect you from hazardous potential materials that won’t be able to get into your meat. It’d be better for you and whoever going to eat that food.

Click Here to get a detailed guide about how to use the electric smoker.

What Happens If You Don’t Season Your Electric Smoker?

Seasoning an electric smoker is just like a test run. When you run your smoker without any food inside it, a fine and black coating produces inside the unit that makes a protective layer inside the unit.

If you are not going to season your electric smoker then it will start catching rust and maybe its demise will happen sooner than before. Most importantly the taste of your food, for which you’re struggling to get a smoker will be a complete waste and the taste will be spoiled.

Maintaining Electric Smoker After Seasoning:

There will be no need for scrubbing the inside of the smoker once you’ve seasoned it. All you have to do is wipe it gently after every use to remove any loose ash. However, you don’t need to remove the thin coating of black smoke.

Click Here to get a detailed guide about how to clean the electric smoker.

Clean smoker when it is warm:

The best way to clean it, when it is warm. For this purpose you’ll only need warm soapy water and no chemical will be required. Make sure to unplug the switch and then start its cleaning. You can also use a wire brush to remove grease from the shelves. Use a damp cloth to wipe the interior properly.

Clean all surfaces carefully:

To clean the viewing window, use a few paper towels and turn them into a ball and damp with little water then wipe the glass of the window. You can even wash the outside of your unit with soapy water and then wipe it neatly to dry.

Cover and Store it Properly:

When the unit is completely cold, dried, and washed from inside and outside, pack it carefully. Use a protective cover, and store it in a convenient place. 

Click Here to get a detailed guide about how to do an electric smoker work.

Tips Of the Day For Your First Smoke In An Electric Smoker

Now you’ve seasoned and cleaned your smoker, here are some tips for your first smoke:

  • Use cheaper cuts of meat that are not fiddly for the first time.
  • You can even use pork butt or chicken for your first smoke.
  • You’ll learn a lot of new things in your first smoking process and your smoker won’t mind it.
  • If you’ve cold smoker already, then you can try smoking cheese for the first time. As cheese is inexpensive and can be smoked easily and quickly within the low temperature.
  • Don’t forget to keep in check the inner moisture. You will not like to dry your meat inside the unit. If your smoker has a water pan then use it for the relevant purpose. If there’s no water pan then you can place a small cake tin filled with water.
  • You may also need to get some extra things for your smoker such as a good quality meat thermometer to ensure maximum accuracy.

Kinds Of Wood Chips You Can Use

Most of the consumers go for choosing maple wood or mesquite wood chips in the process of seasoning. However, many other types are also available to provide various tastes and for different smells. You can try hickory, cherry, plum, and alder. There are the following types of wood chips present:

  • Oakwood chips
  • Hickory wood chips
  • Walnut wood chips
  • Applewood chips
  • Cherry wood chips
  • Mesquite wood chips
  • Alder wood chips
  • Maple wood chips
  • Pecan wood chips
  • Plum wood chips

FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have to season a Masterbuilt smoker?

Like all other smokers, Masterbuilt also needs to be seasoned for the first time to get rid of oils, dirt, and leftover bacteria after the manufacturing process.

What is the best oil to use during seasoning?

You can use vegetable oil, sunflower, or avocado oil. But we’d recommend using canola or peanut oil because the smoker point of them can reach up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. So the oil won’t burn to ruin the taste of your food during seasoning.

Can you re-season a rusty smoker?

Yes, you can. But it will take a lot of effort and hard work. The results will be much better when you do it before the first use. It will help to prevent your unit from rusting.

Lightupbbq was started by Freddy Zeus, an environmental engineer and a professional chef who has been around the world learning the craft of cooking.

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