Smoking new BBQ kit

Smoker box and cherry wood chips

After years of messing about with charcoal I finally gave in and bought a gas BBQ last year. It’s brilliant – cooking outside so much more now it’s easy.

I’ve had my eye on a smoker box for a while though to add in a bit more of the authentic BBQ flavour and also to try a bit of home smoking.

Sainsbury’s offered me the chance to try one out so I gratefully accepted the offer.

I needed to do a bit of googling to work out what to do with it but there’s loads of good tips online.

By coincidence the morning it arrived a found a local seller of wood chips (cherry wood) so was good to go.

There are two things you can do with this – add a subtle smoke flavour to your normal gas BBQ cooking or use it in a more complex process to hot smoke your food. I started with the easy version but will try hot smoking and post the results.

Obviously, a BBQ with a tight fitting lid is a must or it’s not going to work.

You start by soaking the chips for an hour so they’ll smoke more and burn longer.

Then the box goes onto the cooking grill on a high gas to get going – this took a little while but I did keep plying about with it which probably didn’t help. It’s got holes in the top and bottom to release the smoke.

It was soon chuffing away like a proper campfire. It burnt for about an hour which was plenty of time to cook.

I had a couple of mackerel which I sat in foil to protect them a bit from the direct heat. They were for a midweek salad so once they’d done on went a couple of pork chops and a steak for tea.

The fish were lovely – really tasted like I remember them from being cooked over charcoal or wood. To be honest I think I could have done with turning the gas down to cook them more slowly and give them even more time in the smoke. Next time.

The pork chops didn’t pick up as much flavour although the fat on them had a nice smokiness.

The steak was a real success – again tasted properly chargrilled even from a gas grill.

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It’s a simple enough bit of kit but it really does add an extra dimension of flavour to a gas BBQ. It was easy to clean (dishwasher) and chips were cheap to buy – I’m told its worth experimenting with different woods too.

You need a big enough grill to fit it on alongside the food but even with my small portable BBQ it wasn’t a problem.

My tips – check the neighbours don’t have their washing out, turn the heat down once its smoking and don’t be tempted to keep lifting the lid.

Thanks to the Sainsbury’s Blog Network for letting me try it out.

Sainsburys smoker box from Matt Appleby on Vimeo.

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Categories: Beef lamb and pork, Fish, Summer


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3 Comments on “Smoking new BBQ kit”

  1. August 19, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

    Hey Matt,

    Glad to see that we helped you get your hands on a barbecue smoker and even better to read that you tried a few different bits of meat. Got to say, that juicy bit of steak is making us all hungry here!

    Sainsbury’s Blogger Community

  2. Dave B
    December 14, 2013 at 5:38 pm #

    Matt loved the BBQ stuff,must get to chat about this at next Wales game. Heres a few things you might find worth trying…..have found smoking sawdust easier than the old chips…..put in tinfoil or old oven tray on top of BBQ grill and will smoke away happily and easy to top up if needed.Dave Owens put me onto a nifty little cold smoker device which uses sawdust and is in form of metal concentric maze so sawdust burns really slowly allowing those important long hours for cold smoking.(QPRO Cold Smoke Generator from Mac’s BBQ Ltd )Finally recently in summer attempted the American classic, “beer can chicken” you got to have a go for your next BBQ for friends…..see mine on my FB page .

  3. May 18, 2017 at 12:53 pm #

    a gas BBQ kit seems easier than charcoal one. How about the smoke from a gas one? does it more friendly?

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