|Best Charcoal Bullet Smokers
|Weber 721001 Smokey Mountain Cooker 18-Inch Charcoal Smoker
|Masterbuilt 20060416 Charcoal Bullet Smoker
|Best Ugly Drum Smoker
|18-1/2 in. Classic Pit Barrel Cooker Package
|Best Vertical Charcoal Smokers
|Dyna-Glo DGX780BDC-D 36" Vertical Charcoal Smoker
|Dyna-Glo DGO1176BDC-D Charcoal Offset Smoker
|Best Kamado Charcoal Smokers
|KamadoJoe KJ23RHC Classic II, Charcoal Grill
|Char-Griller E06614 Akorn Jr. Kamado Kooker Charcoal Grill
|Broil King 911470 Keg 5000 Charcoal Barbecue Grill
|Pit Boss 71220 Kamado BBQ Ceramic Grill Cooker, 22 Inches
|Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado Kooker Charcoal Barbecue Grill and Smoker
|Char-Broil Kamander Charcoal Grill
|Best Charcoal Grill Smoker Combo
|PK Grills Charcoal Grill Smoker Combo
|PK Grills PK360-STBX-D Grill and Smoker
Table of Contents
- Top 6 Best Charcoal Smoker Grill Reviews
- 1. Weber 721001 Smokey Mountain Cooker 18-Inch Charcoal Smoker
- 2. Weber 14401001 Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill Smoker 22-Inch
- 3. Classic Pit Barrel Cooker (Drum Smoker)
- 4. Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado Kooker Charcoal Grill and Smoker
- 5. Dyna-Glo DGX780BDC-D 36″ Vertical Charcoal Smoker
- 6. Masterbuilt 20060416 Charcoal Bullet Smoker
Let’s face it, there is just something special about lighting up a smoker that uses charcoal. Perhaps the charcoal makes us one with nature. And, the truth is, it takes a good bit of skills to make this process work successfully.
Everyone has a story about spending countless hours cooking smoked foods. However, this does not have to be such a daunting job. If you have a good charcoal smoker that will maintain an optimum temperature, cooking is easy and doesn’t require much time or attention.
In order to help you make the right choice, we have compiled a list that shows the best charcoal smokers on the market in 2018.
Top 6 Best Charcoal Smoker Grill Reviews
1. Weber 721001 Smokey Mountain Cooker 18-Inch Charcoal Smoker
The Weber Smokey Mountain (WSM) first appeared on the market in 1981. This smoker still claims the title of the best charcoal smoker. The 18” model provides an adequate cooking surface for most families. The review that follows applies to all sizes of WSM charcoal smoker.
As time went along, Weber continuously improved their smoker and made it popular with chefs at all levels of expertise. This smoker has been deemed the best on for beginning chefs; however, it is a contender in competitions against even the most expensive smoker sets.
The foundation for Weber’s success with the WSM line is because it has outstanding construction and quality materials. Also, the Weber line is easy to operate and affordable.
Most people prefer charcoal water smokers or charcoal bullet smokers (like the Weber Smokey Mountain). These types of smokers are smaller and maintain a constant temperature for a long time.
The Weber Smokey Mountain has three major sections:
- Lid that is shaped like a dome and features a thermometer
- Mid-section for cooking – holds the grates for cooking, the pan for water, and a door to let you get into your wood or charcoal.
- Bottom section that holds the ring of charcoal. This is where the smoked wood, as well as the charcoal, will go. This part of the smoker features 3 vents that can be adjusted to maintain optimum airflow. In turn, this controls the temperature of your cooker.
- Easy to use – Some people are afraid to cook with charcoal because it is difficult. With this cooker, you can start the food and walk away. Some chefs have started a brisket at bedtime and let it cook until lunch the next day without a single problem due to changing temperature.
- High-quality construction – No doubt about it, this smoker is high quality. From the chrome coated legs to the porcelain finish, this smoker will last a lifetime.
- Ability to cook a large meal – Even though this smoker takes up just a little bit of space, you will never feel limited in the cooking area. When you purchase the 18” smoker model, you still get 2 – 18 ½” cooking grates. This equals to about a 481 sq. inch cooking area. You will be able to cook enough food to feed the entire neighborhood.
2. Weber 14401001 Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill Smoker 22-Inch
You will be pleased to learn that by tweaking it just a bit, the Weber Original Kettle transforms into a great charcoal smoker.
If you find yourself smoking a lot of food, you might still want to invest in a smoker. However, if you are not one to smoke meats every weekend and would rather not make the investment, you will enjoy the ease with which the Weber Original Kettle can substitute as a smoker occasionally.
No matter which option you choose, this classic grill is great value at a great price. You will own a grill with excellent features that are made by a brand is known worldwide for its quality and performance. Then, when you want to smoke meats, just follow some of the simple smoking guidelines.
- Tight seals – The Weber Original Kettle features airtight. For this reason, the grill is able to function as a smoker also. The tight seals enable you to maintain constant heat over a long period of time. Also, the seal prevents heat from escaping so you will use less fuel.
- Construction that lasts – The Weber’s body is composed of sheets of pressed steel that have been covered by porcelain enamel. This feature ensures that you will have several years of grilling without dealing with rust. For grills that stay outside in the elements, a cover is a worthwhile investment.
- Lightweight and easy to carry – Because of the two wheels on the legs, the grill is easy to maneuver.
3. Classic Pit Barrel Cooker (Drum Smoker)
For those of you who are watching your budget or maybe you’re a do it yourself kind of person, perhaps making your own drum smoker is an excellent idea. The drum smokers (also known as “ugly drum smokers”) are very popular because they are inexpensive and work great.
The Pit Barrell cooker has some of the same design as the Smokey Mountain by Weber. The missing water bowl is a major difference.
With a conventional smoker or grill, the meat is placed on a grilling rack. However, the Pit Barrel cooker features metal hooks for hanging meat in the smoker.
The Pit Barrel smoker is constructed from a thirty-gallon drum made of 18 gauge steel. This smoker is capable of handling high temperatures. Because it has a cylindrical shape, the heat is evenly distributed in the cooker.
- Vertical hook system for hanging meat – Vertical cooking provides a greater cooking space.
- Lack of conduction points – When you use a conventional smoker, there may be points that get hotter than others either because of how it is positioned to the fire or perhaps some of the food is touching the grate. When meat hangs from the hook, the cooking surface is more evenly distributed and let the meat from more bark.
- Easier cleanup – The juice from the meat falls onto the coals so no time is required to washing up a water pan after the cooking is done.
- Costly – This cooker costs more than other comparable drum smokers.
- May overheat – This cooker may get too hot. As you cook on it, you need to start slowly with the small amount of lit charcoal.
4. Char-Griller 16620 Akorn Kamado Kooker Charcoal Grill and Smoker
Even though the Char Griller has been known as a manufacturer of cheap grills that have been produced in bulk, this particular model hits the value to cost level exactly.
Since the ceramic outer has been replaced with a lightweight double wall steel, the cost of Char-Griller Akorn Kamado has also been reduced. While the grill is still durable, it is less costly than other Kamado cookers (smokers).
The inside features steel that is coated with porcelain. The outside has a steel finish that is powder coated.
The Char-Griller Akorn Kamado features 314 sq. in. of cooking area made from cast iron. With an added 133 sq. in. rack for warming, the chef will enjoy a total of 447 sq. in. of cooking surface.
- Cooking grates made from cast iron – Durable cast iron is used to make the main grate. With a conveniently removable middle, you can drop chunks of wood onto the coals easily. The warming grate is not very substantial, but it could easily hold some meat or other food after it has been cooked.
- Excellent pan for ash – This cooker features a well-designed ash pan that makes for easy cleanup.
- Varied range of temperatures – This grill can cook easily at temperatures as high as 700 degrees F or 371 degrees C. The lower end of the temperature scale is 200 degrees F or 93 degrees C.
- Uses charcoal efficiently – All Kamado grills handle charcoal very efficiently. This cooker does also. One round of charcoal lasts a long time. For longer cooking projects, the larger lumps of charcoal made from hardwood work well. For hot, quick cooks, smaller pieces tend to work better.
- Worth the cost – With the affordable cost, the Akorn Kamado smoker is a great value. A leading competitor, the Big Green Egg, costs around $1,000 or more. For just a fraction of that amount, the Char-Griller Akorn Kamado can be purchased. This is easy to set up and fits tightly so you can enjoy cooking.
- Lightweight for the size – This steel kamado grill (smoker) is much lighter than its competitors that are made from ceramic. This makes this grill more portable and easier to maneuver.
- The gaskets are low quality – When you use this smoker set at very high temperatures, the gaskets break down and allow smoke to leak out. Just purchase some replacement gaskets for high temperatures by Nomex and you are back in business.
- Smoking stone costs extra money – Even though there are some less expensive do it yourself options, many people prefer to purchase the smoking stone for slow and low cooking.
5. Dyna-Glo DGX780BDC-D 36″ Vertical Charcoal Smoker
The Dyna-Glo vertical charcoal smoker is an excellent example of a reasonable smoker in the cabinet style. This vertical smoker features 784 sq. in. of cooking space and measures 36 inches.
Even though the cabinet style is most commonly used smokers run by electricity or gas, the Dyna-Glo is a rare vertical charcoal smoker. The most prominent advantage of this smoker is that the food can be reached very easily. With many smokers such as the Weber Smokey Mountain, you have to remove several grill racks to reach all the foods. With the Dyna-Glo vertical charcoal smoker, you have easy access to the four racks.
This smoker is easy to assemble. It comes with the main box put together so you do not have to add any bolts. You will like the sturdy, well make appearance and feel of the racks.
- Abundant ways to control the temperature – The side dampers provide one way to control the temperature in the smoker. Learning to use the dampers will take some time and effort, but once you know how to do it, you have excellent smoker control.
- The door is vertical – Having the ability to simply open the door and get to all 4 racks is very useful.
- The smoker leaks – With a low-end price, the fact that the smokers do not seal off tightly is not shocking. For the manufacturer to maintain a lower price point, they have to sacrifice quality in some areas.
- The wood box is not high quality – The box for the wood chips is noticeable low quality. It appears to be made with cheap materials and workmanship. The box’s lid fails to fit tightly.
6. Masterbuilt 20060416 Charcoal Bullet Smoker
If you are looking for a smoker that is great for taking to the camp, using for backyard BBQs, and grilling at the next tailgate party, look no further. At home or away, this Masterbuilt charcoal bullet smoker will allow you to serve your family and friends with delicious food every time.
This no-nonsense model includes everything a smoker needs to be functional and even includes some of the extras of higher-end smokers. Beginners, as well as experts, will enjoy using this charcoal bullet smoker. The smoker’s design and portability make it a winner for everyone.
- Provides easy access to charcoal through a front door.
- Includes 395 square inches of space for cooking.
- Includes a porcelain covered pan for charcoal and bowl for water.
- Has 2 porcelain covered smoking grates.
- Ensures that you maintain proper cooking temperature with a thermometer in the lid.
- Holds temperatures steady at up to 400 degrees F.
- Thermometer on the lid is very visible.
- Use, clean up, and maintenance are simple.
- Affordable for all.
- Convenient easy to use smoker for chefs of all levels of expertise due to its size and portability.
- Roomy inside provides plenty of space for a variety of foods.
- Thin metal is used for the exterior.
- Because the internal temperature fluctuates, loading more chips may be difficult.
- Quite a bit of timely assembly is required.