Directions for Smoky Mountain Smokers

••• Eising/Photodisc/Getty Images

Smoking adds a delectable flavoring to meats and seafood. The choice of wood to use as a smoking base is limited only by the imagination, though mesquite, hickory, apple and cherry are some perennial favorites. Whether store-bought or taken by a hunter or angler, meat smoked in your own backyard smoker will have its own special tang. The Great Outdoors Grill Company, which has ceased operation, manufactured the Smoky Mountain smoker.

Hook up the propane tank by inserting the nipple of the regulator into the valve outlet and tightening the coupling nut until it comes to a full stop.

Open the smoker and remove the smoke box from its cradle just above the burner. Remove the lid and fill it with your choice of wood chips or chunks, such as mesquite or hickory. Close the lid and return it to its place.

Line the water pan with aluminum foil. This will make cleanup easier, as the drippings will catch on the foil. Fill the pan with about half gallon of water -- up to 1 inch below the rim.

Check to make sure the smoker is sparking properly by turning the large knob on the left a few clicks. If it is, release it, turn on the LP gas valve one-and-a-half turns, then turn the right-hand side knob counterclockwise to the "high" setting and turn the left-hand side knob a few clicks again to ignite the burner.

Set the vents. If your smoker has two lower vents, set them closed to the tab stops. If you only have a vent on top, set it closed to the stop tab. Make sure not to close the vents all the way.

Allow the smoker to continue on "high" for a minute, and then lower the temperature to between low and medium. You want it to reach a temperature of around 225 degrees Fahrenheit. The wood should begin smoking within five minutes.

Load your meat in the smoker and close the door. Check after an hour and a half and add more chips when necessary; the chipper will start to smoke more heavily once the chips in it are about to be exhausted. Grasp the smoke box -- be sure to wear your oven gloves -- and pull it out of the smoker. Pour the ashes out in a fire-safe container after closing the door to the smoker to retain the heat inside. Add chips to the box and return it to the smoker.

Smoke the meat as called for by your recipe. Turn the knob on the right to "Off" to shut the smoker off.


About the Author

Joe Steel is a Northwest-based editor, writer and novelist, former news editor of an outdoor weekly. He also was an editor at a Seattle-based political weekly and editor of a monthly business magazine. He has been published in the "Seattle Times," the "Washington Post" and the "Foreign Service Journal," among other publications.

Photo Credits

  • Eising/Photodisc/Getty Images