Backyard barbecues are always a delight when it comes to family gatherings and a fun day with friends. Spring and summer are the best seasons to enjoy some delicious smoked chicken with assorted veggies. Grills usually take a lot of time for meat like ham and salmon to serve, and not everyone wants to invest in an electric smoker. So, today we’ll be discussing a few tricks to turn your grill into a smoker. This will enhance the taste of your food and add smoked aroma to your meat and veggies, saving a lot of money.
Let us go step by step to turn a typical grill into a smoker.
Step 1: Soaking of wood chips
Soaking the wood chips before using them helps to increase the smoke. Soak them for around 30 minutes. You can choose the flavor as per your preference or the best one to go with the kind of meat you are going to smoke.
Step 2: Firing up the grill
Preheating your grill for half an hour or so will bring out a better result. Either you are using a charcoal grill or a gas grill; bring up the temperature to 225 degrees.
Step 3: Bringing in the wood chips
Once the temperature of the grill has reached 225 degrees, bring up the soaked wood chips. If you have a charcoal grill, you can put the wood chips directly on the coals. To increase the temperature in a charcoal grill, adjust the vents, or add more charcoal in the chimney. If you are using a gas grill, wrap the wood chips in aluminum foil and make small holes in the foil using a toothpick.
Remember to fold and crimp the edges of the foil, so it remains intact. It will allow the steam to escape. If you have bigger meat pieces that will take longer to smoke, then you will need to change the wood chips after 3 hours as they wear out by time. Fire up the grill again when all wood chips are in place. You can start cooking when you see the smoke.
Final step: Ready to smoke
You can add a slice of preferable meat to the grill and enjoy the aroma while it gets ready to go down your belly. Brush the grate a bit, so the food does not stick to it. Grill-cum-smoker can take one hour to up to 4 hours for your food to get ready. It depends on the type of meat you are smoking.
Chicken and fish take lesser time as compared to ham or turkey fillet. However, thinner filets might take a shorter span of time to get smoked. Once you have placed the uncooked meat on the grate, close the grill and check the water pan. You might need to refill it if you have a large quantity of meat to be smoked.
Don’t miss this guide before you start smoking: 17 Important Grilling Safety Tips – Especially for Kids
Refrain from opening the grill too often as it will disturb the temperature, and your food might not turn out the way it actually should. Using a thermometer will help you judge the doneness of food. Smoking usually gives a pink tint to meat, which can be mistaken as finely cooked, but it is just the outer layer. Use a thermometer at the thickest part of the meat to ensure doneness.