How to Get More Smoke from an Electric Smoker (5 Simple Methods)

If you’re wondering how to get your electric smoker to produce more smoke, you’ve come to the right place!

In this guide, you’ll learn: 

  • How to get your electric smoker to produce more smoke
  • How much smoke an electric smoker should produce
  • And much more!

What You Need to Know About How an Electric Smoker Works

An electric smoker works through the various components that they come equipped with such as the heating element, smoking chamber, wood chip tray, and water tray. While many come with the wood chip tray, others may not.

Typically, when you preheat your smoker and add water and wood chips to the appropriate trays, the heating element provides enough heat to create a smoking reaction. This smoke is then moved around the smoking chamber enough so that the meat you are cooking is enveloped.

This produces a delicious smoked meat flavor that you may be looking for depending on the type of wood you use.

How Much Smoke Does an Electric Smoker Produce?

One thing to keep in mind about an electric smoker is that it does not naturally produce as much smoke as other types of smokers. This is because it uses electric heating rods to produce heat as opposed to charcoal or other elements. 

Because of this, you will need to make some changes or additions to your smoking process when you use an electric smoker. This does not mean that you cannot achieve the same delicious smoked meat flavors, it just means that you have to help the smoker along.

The biggest complaint about the electric smoker is that it does not put out as much smoke as you may want. This is why you may have to do additional steps to create the experience you desire.

How to Get More Smoke From an Electric Smoker

If your electric smoker is not producing the amount of smoke you want for your various meats, then there are several things you can do. Some of these should be considered whether or not you are getting the right amount of smoke.

For the most part, if you read through your manufacturer’s instructions and do some research online, you should be able to learn various tips to help you get the most out of your electric smoker. 

If you are looking for ways to get more smoke from an electric smoker, then read on for some helpful tips.

Season Your Smoker Regularly

One of the most important things you need to do before starting to smoke your favorite meats in your electric smoker is seasoning. In most cases, your owner’s manual will not tell you how important this step is.

Taking the time to season your smoker can make the difference between meat that has some smoky flavor, and perfectly smoked ones. This is because a newer smoker does not come equipped with the natural smoke fragrance.

To season your smoker means that you need to heat it and run it just as you would if you were smoking meat. This means going through the entire process as well as adding in some oil to produce smoke.

Doing this adds a blackened layer of smoke that adheres to the electric smoker and adds to the flavor of future meats. Additionally, heating your new electric smoker this way helps to burn off any residue that is left behind from manufacturing.

Add Plenty of Wood Chips

If you want to get more smoke out of your electric smoker during the cooking process, you will need to ensure that you have added plenty of wood chips. This is why it is important to load the wood chip tray to its capacity before beginning.

Making sure you have enough wood chips, in the beginning, is important, but also keeping it loaded throughout the smoking process is equally important. This will ensure that the smoke continues at the same level the entire time.

Many people, when using their electric smoker, will get it started and then walk away until it is time to pull their meat out. The downside to this behavior is that the wood chips may not be producing the same amount of smoke halfway through the process.

Adding in more wood chips will ensure that your electric smoker is giving you the amount of smoke you desire.

Camerons Products Alder Wood Smoker Chips
$23.99 $13.99
Buy Now On Amazon
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
06/12/2024 12:47 am GMT

Don’t Soak Your Wood Chips in Water

When you are scouring the internet for tips and tricks to using an electric smoker, there are plenty of people who advise soaking your wood chips in water before starting. They believe that this is what will enhance the smoke during the cooking process.

When you soak your wood chips, there is indeed a stream of white smoke that is produced from the process. This smoke, however, is steam and not the smoke you are wanting to add to your food.

The steam from soaking your wood chips will not enhance the flavor of your meat in the same way that the blue smoke produces. This is because blue smoke is what you need to get the delicious smoky flavor you desire.

Use a Wood That Has a Stronger Smoke

Some woods naturally smoke more than others and are therefore desired over other wood chips. Using stronger wood will produce more smoke and translate to a more robust smoky flavor for your meat.

While using fruitwoods with your electric smoker can produce a nice pleasant flavor to your smoked meat, it may not give you the robust flavor you are looking for. This is because these woods do not produce the strong smoke that is needed to penetrate the meat.

Using wood such as hickory or even mesquite if you want to get more smoke from your electric smoker would be your better choice. This is because both of these woods naturally burn hotter and therefore produce more smoke.

It is important to keep in mind that while hickory wood chips are one of the most popular for smoking brisket and other beef, some people prefer the smoke that mesquite offers. It is also important to remember that you will need to experiment with mesquite before finding the perfect amount.

Add a Smoking Tube

After trying the above tips and tricks, if you still feel that your smoker is not producing the type of smoke you desire for your meats, you can try adding a smoking tube. This addition can produce more of the smoke you may be looking for.

A smoking tube is typically made out of stainless steel and holds wood pellets inside of it to produce more smoke. You will want to ensure that you are only using high-quality pellets in the same type of wood flavor as you are using in your wood tray for the best results.

Weber Universal Stainless Steel Smoker Box
$35.99 $33.48
Buy Now On Amazon
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
06/13/2024 04:03 am GMT
fact about electric smokers and adding wood chips

Why Would you Want More Smoke from an Electric Smoker?

Novice grillers and smokers often wonder what the benefits of producing more smoke when they are using an electric smoker are. When you are first starting, it may not seem as important and is typically a personal preference.

Once you gain more experience smoking meats, you will learn more about what you like and what you do not prefer. This will determine whether or not you want more smoke for your desired flavor.

Keep in mind that when you are using an electric smoker, while you will get smoke, you may have to do additional things to get the amount of smoke you need for certain meats. Doing your research is the best way to determine what you need to do.

More smoke often translates to a more robust flavor for your meat which is more of the point of why you are using a smoker in the first place. If you want to create phenomenal smoked meats, then you will need to find the right combination of elements that will help.

If you are just starting with the smoking process, you will need to experiment with many different methods before you find the perfect one for you. Smoking meats is a personal choice and should result in what you and your family like the most.

How Often Should You Add Wood Chips to Your Electric Smoker?

Knowing how often to add wood chips to your electric smoker depends more on how much smoke you wish to produce. If you want the smoke to be prominent throughout the cooking process, then it is best to add wood chips more often than not.

This will also depend on the brand and model of your electric smoker and whether yours comes with its wood tray or not. While most do come with the tray, others do not.

Whatever the case for your smoker, it is important to get to know your unit so that you can determine how often you need to be adding wood chips. 

If your electric smoker comes equipped with a wood tray, it is best to fill it in the beginning and then keep a check on it throughout the smoking process. This way, you can ensure that it stays at the same level the entire time.

You will want to keep an eye on your smoker anyway when you first purchase it so that you can learn how it operates. This is especially important because not all smokers are created equally and you need to notice any quirks that they may have.

While the manufacturer’s instructions can help to guide you through the best practices of using your smoker, there are always nuances that you may have to deal with. Because of this, doing more research and learning by experimenting is usually your best bet.

Final Thoughts on Getting More Smoke from an Electric Smoker

The bottom line when it comes to getting more smoke from an electric smoker is to make sure you are using the trial and error method. This means that you will need to try various tips and tricks as you are getting to know your unit.

Once you have learned more about your smoker, you will know just what it takes to get more smoke so that you can produce the best results for your meats. Keep in mind that more smoke results in a more robust flavor that you and your family can enjoy for years to come.

Photo of author

Hope Davis

Born in Denver, Colorado as the oldest of 5 children, I learned at a young age that the grill was one of the best ways to prepare food for a crowd. And during the winter storm months, when the snow was likely to knock out the power to our house, the propane grill was a lifesaver! You wouldn’t believe the number of things you can cook on a grill when necessary. With parents who couldn’t tell salt from pepper unless you told them, I spent my late teen years making my own seasoning mixes and marinades to dress the meat before barbecues. It wasn’t long before I developed a secret marinade that people still beg me to make for them today! When I was 21 years old I bought my first smoker. Picked up some cedar chips for making a cedar plank salmon...and well, the rest they say is history! I’ve been grilling and smoking all kinds of creations ever since and I’m always excited to share my passion with others through my favorite medium--writing!

2 thoughts on “How to Get More Smoke from an Electric Smoker (5 Simple Methods)”

    • Personally, when I use my Smokehollow electric, I leave it as closed as possible. Never have been able to tell the difference!

      The theory is that a closed vent will keep smoke in longer, but it also means less airflow so new smoke isn’t made as easily. An open vent produces new smoke easily due to the airflow. So maybe they’re equal? But again, I haven’t been able to tell.


Leave a Comment