Smoking items on your grill is a great way to change things up
Ordinary meat, whole fish, poultry and game becomes a taste sensation when smoked. You can smoke pretty much anything you can grill—you just need to take a couple of extra steps. When it comes to smoking items on your grill, people often wonder whether they should use wood chunks or chips and frequently ask what type of wood to use. Let us break down a few things for you.
Wood Chunks or Chips
- Wood Chunks are best for recipes with longer cooking times (more than 30 minutes). They give off more smoke and burn slower than wood chips.
- Wood Chips burn much faster than wood chunks. It is a good idea to soak them in water for at least 30 minutes before use so they smoke instead of ignite. Wood chips work best for recipes that require a shorter cooking time (under 30 minutes).
Types of Wood
There are many types of wood to use. Below we have highlighted a few. We do not recommend using any type of pressure-treated lumber.
Best for beef, poultry, pork or cheeses
Oak tends to cook evenly and can be a versatile choice. It gives off a strong flavor that is not too overwhelming.
Best for beef, game, poultry, and pork
Hickory is one of the more popular woods used for smoking. It gives off a robust, sweet aroma with a bit of a bacony flavor. Be careful to not use too much hickory as it can give your food a somewhat bitter flavor.
Best for beef, pork, and game
Pecan has a delicate, sweet and nutty aroma. A subtler version of Hickory.
Best for beef, lamb, venison
Mesquite burns hot and fast so it is recommended for shorter cooking times. It has a strong, distinctive earthy aroma.
Best for poultry, fish, ham, and veggies
Most fruitwoods, including apple and cherry, tend to burn quickly and gives a mild sweet flavor.
How do you smoke on your gas grill?
The easiest way to turn your gas grill into a smoker is to use an MHP reusable smoker box. Simply put your preferred wood chips or chunks in the smoker box and place it directly on the burners or briquettes under the cooking rack. For longer smoking times, use the water pan technique and your favorite wood soaked in water for several hours. Place chips in the smoker box directly on briquettes alongside a pan filled with water.