Outdoor smokers have the disadvantage of not being used during bad weather. Wind, rain, and snow can be hindrances for you not to be able to use your outdoor smoker, depriving you of that sweet smoked food.

This is a major concern for you, especially if you live in an area with unpredictable weather. Outdoor smokers may not be a practical choice for you. Worry no more because indoor smokers are available for people with such dilemmas.

After strenuous research, we have narrowed it all down to the top 7 indoor smokers that provide the best value for money. You can finally breathe because indoor smokers are finally here to save the day! Now you don’t have to check the weather updates every time you plan to prepare delicious smoked meals for yourself and your family. 

Something to take note of – indoor smokers are not as large compared to their counterparts. However, they still offer the same efficiency and service. In this post, we will be giving you relevant information about:

  • Materials used for the build of indoor smokers
  • Weight and dimensions
  • Size of cooking capacity
  • Versatility and other purposes
  • Fuel sources
  • And other features

We believe these factors are important to consider when selecting an indoor smoker that works for you and your home. We guarantee that the information we state here is of the utmost accuracy. Links are also provided for you to check customer feedback and product reviews directly.

7 best indoor smokers

Emson 8303 Indoor Pressure Smoker

With a weight of 10.7 lbs and dimensions of 13.2” x 13.2” x 12.6”, the Emson 8303 Indoor Pressure Smoker is an electrically-powered smoker that can cater to 4 lbs of food at the most. You can do some searing, smoking, and cooking in it. Its additional pressure smoking feature can cut the average cooking time by half. 

Only a small amount of wood chips is needed to fuel this indoor pressure smoker. There is a front panel where all the settings are displayed, and it is also digitally operable. The user-friendly interface has buttons for hot and cold smoke, pressure or steam regulation, browning or warming, and a timer. It operates with a 1000-wattage and can serve dual purposes as a pressure cooker and smoker. 

Key Features

  • Stainless steel construction
  • 10.7 lbs lightweight countertop model
  • Dual purpose as pressure cooker and smoker
  • Requires minimal wood chips
  • Hot and cold steam functions

Pros

  • Cooking time reduced by half
  • Cold smoke option
  • 2-year product warranty
  • Scratch-proof stainless steel design
  • Requires small amount of wood chips

Cons

  • Hassle assembly 
  • Wood chips compartment is not at the center part

Camerons Large Stovetop Smoker

Versatility is one characteristic that makes the Camerons Stovetop Smoker stand out. You can use the pan for steaming, poaching, roasting meat, fish, and even vegetables. It works with multiple heat sources like electric, gas, and even direct woodfire. With dimensions of 15” x 11” x 3.5” and a weight of 5.6 lbs, this smoker can serve many purposes to satisfy your cravings. 

The rack, lid, drip pan, free wood chips sample, and recipe guide are included in the unit. It is safe to use in the dishwasher, easy to carry around, and easy to store. You can use it anywhere, and the handles can be folded when not in use to save space. The parts are safely enclosed within the unit; all you have to do is put in the wood chips, choose your heat source, and start your smoked food preparation. 

Key Features

  • Stainless steel construction
  • Lightweight and portable – 5.6 pounds
  • Versatile functions: smoker, steamer, poacher, or roaster pan
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Compact for easy storage

Pros

  • Low smoke emission but enough to cook
  • Affordable
  • Works well on stovetops
  • Fast heating
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Exterior surface may be prone to discoloration over time
  • Handle and lid are not entirely heat-resistant

MITBAK Portable Handheld Cold Smoking Gun with Dome Lid

This unique smoking gun by MITBAK only weighs a little over 2 lbs, and it comes with three smoke speed levels along with the added rechargeability of its lithium-ion battery. The package set with dimensions of 17.6” x 12” x 5.2” already has the wood chips and the appropriate lid. 

The MITBAK portable handheld cold smoking gun can accommodate meat and cheese and even smoke liquor beverages like whiskey and bourbon for that exotic concoction. In just a couple of minutes of waiting time, you can enjoy beautifully smoked food without the hassle of actually having a large unit.

Key Features

  • The lightweight and handheld smoking gun
  • 3-speed options
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • All components included in the unit package
  • Smokes meats, vegetables, cheese, or cocktails in minutes

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to use
  • Firm handle grips
  • Long hose
  • Comes with a dome lid

Cons

  • Needs many wood chips to produce enough smoke

Demeyere Resto Four-Piece Stainless Steel Stovetop Smoker Set

This stainless steel smoker set has dimensions of 13” x 11.8” x 7.9” and weighs 5.78 lbs. It can also function as a steamer and can be used on stovetops. It is proven to perform greatly on induction cooktops.

Furthermore, it is also safe for dishwashers and ovens. The handles are safely welded into the unit. It can withstand temperatures up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, making it versatile for cooking food such as meats, seafood, vegetables, and poultry. The steamer function of the Demeyere Resto Four-Piece Stainless Steel Stovetop Smoker Set also adds more recipes to that list. 

Key Features

  • 18/10 stainless steel construction
  • 5.78 pounds 
  • Dual purpose – smoker and steamer
  • Dishwasher safe and induction stovetop safe
  • Oven safe up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit

Pros

  • Durable
  • Easy to clean stainless steel
  • High temperature capacity
  • Chef-quality hot smoking

Cons

  • Unable to cold smoke
  • Takes some time to learn how to use

Charcoal Companion KitchenQue Indoor Stovetop Smoker (CC4132)

Almost everything about the Charcoal Companion KitchenQue Indoor Stovetop Smoker is made of quality stainless steel, so you can be sure that the structural design is more than reliable. It also only weighs 6.67 pounds which is already light for a stainless steel smoker. Its dimensions are 13.5” x 12.5” x 9.5,” and it works on induction cooktops. Other compatible heat sources can be charcoal or LP gas. 

The popular Hickory InstaSmoke fine wood is included in the package, along with a thermometer for temperature monitoring. The temperature limit can reach 400 degrees Fahrenheit. You don’t have to worry about handling because the handles on the sides and lid are heat-resistant silicone. 

Key Features

  • Made from quality steel with an enameled steel drip pan
  • It can be powered via stovetop, charcoal, or LP gas also on an induction cooktop with a diffuser
  • Thermometer and Hickory InstaSmoke wood chips included in the package
  • Handles are made of heat-safe silicone covering
  • 400 degrees Fahrenheit temperature capacity 

Pros

  • Real wooden flavor
  • Usability
  • Easy to clean up 
  • Indoor grilling

Cons

  • Smoke emission 
  • Can’t cold smoke

Nordic Ware Personal-Sized Stovetop Kettle Smoker

Last on the list, but not the least, is this aluminum-constructed Nordic Ware Personal-Sized Stovetop Kettle Smoker with dimensions of 11.75” x 11.75” x 7.5” that is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. This unit can be used on induction stovetops and electric, ceramic, and gas heat sources. 

The unit package includes the dome lid made of aluminum, a drip pan, a cooking tray, a thermometer, and a free recipe book. There is also a pack of natural hickory and applewood wood chips for wet and dry smoking. It can survive temperatures of up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Key Features

  • Aluminum-grade material
  • 4.25 lbs – lightweight
  • Compatible with gas, electric, ceramic, and induction stovetops
  • Includes lid, drip pan, non-stick tray, thermometer, and recipe book
  • Also comes with sustainably sourced 100% natural hickory and applewood chips

Pros

  • Easy to clean
  • Upgradable by adding more steamer racks
  • Caters meat, fish, vegetables, and more
  • Dome-shaped lid can cater chunky food
  • Safe for use in the oven

Cons

  • Red coating is prone to peeling after some time
  • No free racks

Oster CKSTROSMK18 Smoker-Roaster-Oven

An oven, a smoker, and a roaster rolled into one? Yes, please! Look no further because if you are looking for an appliance that can perform those three functions, you can find them all in the Oster CKSTROSMK18 Smoker-Roaster-Oven. Say hello to your companion in smoking, steaming, and roasting. 

The roasting pan is made of enameled steel and comes with the roasting rack, the lid, and the thermometer in the package. The handles remain cool to the touch even under extreme temperatures, so it’s safe to carry around. The racks and pans are also detachable, making them very easy to clean.

It has a capacity of 16 quartz that can fit a whole turkey with a temperature range of 150 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. You can use this smoker indoors and outdoors; the wood chips can be store-bought. The only drawback is that it produces a lot of smoke, so it could be bothersome to use it indoors. This won’t be too much of a problem, though, if you have proper ventilation. 

Pros

  • Can fit one whole turkey
  • Triple purpose – smoker, oven, roaster
  • Removable racks and pans

Cons

  • Too much smoke emission

Indoor smoker and its function

An indoor smoker is an electrically-powered appliance used for cooking, specifically smoking various kinds of meats. It is a form of barbeque food service that can be used for pork, beef, and chicken cuts, among many others. Aside from the meat, vegetables and fish can also be smoked. Smoking produces a unique result in the food. Some may even say that it enhances the flavor of the food. 

Outdoor smokers are the popular devices used for this method of cooking. Still, indoor smokers emerged to remedy that because they may not always be suitable, especially during unfavorable weather conditions. They are smaller and therefore won’t occupy a lot of kitchen space, but you also need to be mindful of the possible safety risks that come with them. 

Types of Indoor Smokers:

There are three major types of indoor smokers:

1. Electric smoker

For the most common type of indoor smoker, we have electric-powered models. Their parts include a thermostat or temperature dial to control the heating element’s heat. You need an electrical source or plug it into an outlet, and you’re good to go. 

2. Stovetop smoker

For stovetop smokers, your food is just put on a rack or tray placed above wood chips or dust. This is a substitute for that outdoor smoker minus the outdoor atmosphere. The rack is placed on a stovetop to produce heat. This smoking style brings out a different flavor and texture to the food. 

3. Handheld smoker

Smokers that are handheld give you more control over the food you smoke. However, this is not as efficient as the large smokers seeping through the food. Handheld smokers can still infuse the smokey flavor in small amounts. These devices are battery-powered and are usually heat-resistant. 

Uses of an indoor smoker

The great thing about indoor smokers is that they are always ready for use anytime. You do not have to worry about the weather condition because they can be used indoors. It doesn’t matter if it’s pouring rain outside, the wind is blowing hard, or there is heavy snow; you can still enjoy using the smoker inside the comfort and safety of your own home.

Most indoor smokers can perform other functions aside from just smoking, like roasting, steaming, and others. Some indoor smoker models are heavy-duty, so you do not have to wait as long as you usually do. 

  1. Home or businesses can be used in various settings, even with limited kitchen space.
  2. Indoor smokers can be used all year round, no matter the season, no matter the weather. 
  3. They are budget-friendly and provide great value for money. With just a few bucks, you can have a multifunctional indoor smoker that carries out a lot of functions. Stovetop grills and smokers do not consume much electricity or fuel. 
  4. It is much easier to cook using an indoor smoker because you can control the heat, temperature, moisture, and smoke levels according to your preference and what the recipe calls for.
  5. These appliances are easy to clean. Drip pans and removable racks make for ease in cleaning up the aftermath. 

How do indoor smokers work?

Indoor smokers come in a couple of different types and therefore work in different mechanisms. The typical operation of a smoker is through heating wood chips and producing hot smoke that seeps through the food placed on a tray or rack. 

Some smokers emit cold smoke instead of the usually hot smoke, bringing a different result. The food’s flavor partly depends on the kind of wood chips used. But most of the time, hot smoke gives an overall better texture and softness to the food. 

The pros and cons of indoor smoking

It is always wise to be informed of the good and bad sides of owning a product you plan on purchasing. 

Pros of owning an indoor smoker

  • It can fit even in small kitchen spaces. Works for food service establishments and urban restaurants.
  • All-year-round use. Not dependent on weather conditions or the season. 
  • Cuts down your expenses on utilities like gas and power. 
  • More control over various cooking aspects. The more high-end the model, the more settings you can control and adjust. 

Cons of owning an indoor smoker

  • They cost more at initial purchase than outdoor smokers because of their multiple functions. But the long-term benefits you reap in a few months make it worth it. 
  • Smoke emissions can circulate throughout the entire house, and depending on the kind of wood chips you use; you can have a variety of scents and odors in the air. Although it does not linger for a long time, this is inevitable whenever you use your smoke. Expect your furniture and carpets to smell like smoke after prolonged exposure. 
  • Smoking indoors can be a safety hazard. You will be using it for several minutes up to a couple of hours, so it’s best to always be on your guard and pay attention to what you’re cooking. 

Vital factors in determining the perfect indoor smoker for you

‘In the world of BBQ cookery, no skill is more of a challenge than smoking foods.’ Michael Nolleda, a barbeque enthusiast, spoke these words. Perfectly smoked food takes a lot to achieve, so you must have the right indoor smoker to help you achieve that goal. 

  1. Food quality

Of course, this should be your priority since you will be preparing food using this device. You must read up on several customer feedback and reviews online before buying the product to know how well it performs and gives outstanding results. It should be able to cook the food well and enhance its flavor.

  1. The amount of smoke emitted.

Great smoke is not an issue for outdoor smokers, but the same can’t be said for indoor models. The smoke buildup inside the house can be bothersome for many people, so you need to know how much smoke is generated by a particular indoor smoker model and if you can tolerate it. It should not be that much so as not to trigger your smoke detector every time you use it. 

  1. Easy to clean

The racks and trays that come with the indoor smoker should be efficiently and conveniently designed to make cleaning simple. It’s a bonus if you do not need to use aluminum foil to cover the tray or rack whenever you smoke food.

  1. Smoking time

Though indoor smokers may not be as fast as outdoor ones, there are still brands that complete the job at a reasonable time. 

  1. Safety

Smoking is an enjoyable and unique cooking method, but it is also hazardous. That is why it is generally done outside. But in this case, since we are talking about indoor smokers, you have to keep in mind that the area where they are used has to be well-ventilated to allow proper air circulation and the exit of smoke as well. Even better if you have an exhaust fan around to expel the smoke faster.

FAQs

We understand if you still have some more questions in your mind and if you need more information about this kind of new appliance. We have already enumerated the great brands and given you enough information on the pros and cons. In the following text, we will be answering some common consumer questions. 

What is the difference between hot and cold smoking?

In its most basic sense, the temperature of the smoke being produced is the main difference between the two. For cold smoking, below 90 degrees Fahrenheit of smoke temperature is used for cooking the food.

This is the ideal temperature for the kinds of food that are best kept raw, and smoking is mainly used to bring out a different texture or consistency. It is usually applied to butter and cheese. While for hot smoking, the temperature can reach up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and the purpose is to cook and smoke the food simultaneously. 

What types of wood can be used for an indoor smoker?

It usually varies on the model, especially for stovetop-style smokers. The size of the wood chips also varies. Some models may require fine material, and others may work alright with the usual chip fragments. Don’t worry because that information is typically included in the product manual.

How often should I clean my indoor smoker?

It is recommended that you should clean your smoker after you use it. Smaller units are safe to use in the dishwasher, so that takes the burden off your shoulders. Use mild soap and water, and do not apply strong chemicals as this may damage the material or leave a lingering taste. The chemicals may also stick to the racks or trays and affect the food you prepare. 

How are smoked beverages prepared?

Some drinks taste better and have a little more kick to them when smoked. The snifter is usually smoked by the bartender first using hickory wood chips and covered. This allows smoke to accumulate inside the glass. After serving a drink, the smoke has altered the glass, and the beverage is poured into it. 

Can a smoker make a drink taste bad?

There is a careful process to be followed when serving smoked drinks. Even the most experienced bartenders can still commit errors in making them. The line between perfection and disaster is very thin. A clean smoker is essential.

Repeated use can cause tar to build up inside the smoker gun and creates a terrible result. Too much smoke in the glass is also a bad thing, as well as overproduction of smoke with too much wood chips. Over-smoking can spoil the drink instead of infusing it with a distinct flavor, and you do not want this. 

What other items can be used in the smoker?

Herbs and spices can also be used as fuel for your smoker. They bring out a different taste for the food or drink if you want a change from the usual effect of wood chips. The Internet can give you many recipe ideas if you have the patience to search. Also, no one is stopping you from conducting a few experiments of your own to see the extent of the capabilities of your smoker gun.

How long is the preparation time when using smoker guns?

You only need to wait a few minutes for your food when using smoker guns. It has a more direct effect on the food, so it shortens the preparation time compared to other types. This works for food that is usually served raw or does not need to undergo thorough cooking, but smoke absorption will suffice for it to be prepared and ready for serving.

Conclusion

The first food prepared using your new indoor smoker is the defining moment. It is a huge determinant of the quality of the appliance that you purchased. If you did not have a hard time operating it and if everything you need already comes with the package, then that’s a star for being user-friendly. The average-sized indoor smokers are typically used for meats and bigger kinds of food, while the smaller, handheld ones are usually for smaller food and smoked drinks. 

Versatility in terms of functions that it can perform is also another factor that makes indoor smokers worth the buy. You can use it to enhance the flavor of the meat you serve or for your cheese appetizers. Expand the horizons of your food preparation and cooking abilities without spending much money on expensive cooking equipment. 

We hope that you can make the most out of your indoor smoker to the point that you become open to the possibility of investing in a bigger smoker unit so you can also increase the size of the food that you can serve at one time, especially if you want to have a lot of people over or if you’re hosting a large gathering. Bigger units can cater to a lot of food at once. Feel free to leave feedback if our article helped you in making a decision. 

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API