Understanding how to use an offset smoker as a grill requires understanding its design. Its design features a larger chamber where the cooking is done, and a smaller chamber called “firebox” where you build the fire. This means that if you simply want to smoke food, the food that you are cooking is not directly above the intense heat of the burning charcoal because they are located in the cooking chamber. So, you can easily temper the heat of the cooking chamber so as not to overcook your food when using an offset smoker. But if you want to grill, you need to be created with your setup when using an offset smoker
Grilling vs Smoking
As a starter, you will sometimes find it hard to get a perfectly cooked meat using your offset smoker. The reason for this is that you still need to get the hang of using it. You also need to learn the modes of operation as well as the temperature control which is critical to getting a well-cooked food. But once you get the hang of it, you will surely find it easy to use.
Smoking, of course, is different from grilling. When you sear or grill meat, for example, you are applying direct radiant and conductive heat onto the meat. Moreover, there should be very little smoke, and the process should take a shorter time. Moreover, you are required to give the grilling constant attention.
Grilling is usually done for tender meats like hamburger and steak, cut-up chicken, lobster, shrimps, and fish fillets. Furthermore, when grilling, you often don’t close the cover of the grilling chamber. The food that you sear or grill is usually juicy and readily dry out or lose their flavors when you cook them longer.
Smoking, on the other hand, makes use of the lowest convective heat with low temperatures. You can take a nap while you smoke food because it usually takes longer to smoke meat. You usually maintain a constant 200° to 250° for several hours when you smoke food using the best offset smokers on the market.
Can You Grill Meat Using a Smoker?
Now let’s answer the primary question of whether you can use an offset smoker to grill. Depending on the design of your offset smoker, you can surely do some grilling using an offset smoker. But it would surely be messy. Moreover, the offset smoker is not specifically designed for grilling. Thus, if I were you, I would not do it. But if you really want to grill using your offset smoker. I think you can follow the following steps on how to grill using an offset smoker.
- If you have a large firebox, you can surely grill using the firebox. As mentioned above, grilling is different from smoking. Smoking takes longer and you usually maintain a constant smoking temperature of 200° to 250° to perfectly smoke your food. On the other hand, grilling takes a shorter time and the heat is usually almost directly applied to the meat that you cook. Thus, you can surely use the firebox for grilling if it is large enough to accommodate the meat that you want to grill.
- Clean the grates that you would put onto the firebox. You can oil the grates to keep the food from readily sticking on the grates. Pour a bit of oil onto a paper towel and gently rub the grates with the oiled paper towel.
- Light the charcoal and let the charcoal burn until you’ve achieved the essential heat to grill.
- Leave the firebox enclosure open. Then, position the grilling grates on top of the burning charcoal. You should carefully position the grill. It should be sturdily anchored on top of the burning charcoal to prevent it from accidentally falling.
- Then, you can place the meat that you want to grill on the grilling grates. You should pay attention to the meat that you are grilling to avoid overcooking them. Add charcoal if the charcoals are already smoldering or ashy.
- Flip the meat over to cook the other side of the meat. You should figure out if the steaks are done by touching or poking it at different stages. Once the meat already feels firm, it is already well done. Avoid flipping the steaks over multiple times. You should only flip them once.
- Avoid stabbing the meat with a fork for it may release its flavorful juices. Just let it cook until it is well done.
Understanding how to use an offset smoker as a grill necessitates knowing that the offset smoker is not meant for grilling. But if you are adamant enough to grill food using the offset smoker, you can simply follow