How to Season a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker: Step-by-Step

Today we are covering why you NEED to season that brand new Masterbuilt electric smoker, and EXACTLY how to do it the RIGHT WAY.

Let’s go!

seasoning a masterbuilt electric smoker


What is Seasoning, or Pre-Seasoning a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker?

So you just bought, or are thinking about buying a Masterbuilt electric smoker.

Well, whether its a propane or electric, charcoal or pellet, whether its a vertical cabinet or a barrel style Oklahoma Joe…they all have one thing in common when they are new.

They need to be seasoned.

Seasoning a new smoker is necessary for a variety of reasons. It will burn off all of the oils, dirt, and bacteria left over after the manufacturing process and will leave your Masterbuilt electric smoker ready to use.

Though the word ‘seasoning’ may spring to mind a funny image of seasoning your smoker with cooking spices, the reality is much different.

Seasoning a smoker can sometimes be referred to as pre-seasoning or curing, and on an electric smoker it differs from seasoning a cast-iron skillet or seasoning a pellet grill.

Whether you’re entertaining guests or kicking back with your family, it’s a vital first step that you need to carry out before cooking your food.

In this article, we’re going to be taking a look at how to season a Masterbuilt electric smoker, and why it’s so important.

We’ll then provide you with a handy step-by-step guide on how to season your new smoker correctly.

Ready? Let’s begin!


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Do You Need to Season a New Masterbuilt Electric Smoker?

Seasoning your Masterbuilt electric smoker before initial use is important to laying the foundation for both delicious and hygienic BBQ results.

By doing so, you’ll be removing unwanted odors from the production stage, protecting the smoker from rust, and also curing the paint, which will help it look new for years to come.

Two Main Reasons Why a Smoker Should be Seasoned:

  1. To get rid of debris and odors
  2. To protect it from rust.


Getting Rid of Debris and Odors from the Manufacturing Stage

When a sparkling new Masterbuilt electric smoker gets put inside its box ready for purchase, it brings with it a whole host of leftover dirt, odors, and oils from the factory it was made in, and the production process it has gone through.

the inside walls of a masterbuilt electric smoker

Remember when we had you burn a load of charcoal in that brand new galvanized trash can before we made Trash Can Turkey?

It’s the same principle here.

BTW, if you don’t know what Trash Can Turkey is, please stop what you are doing and check it out HERE RIGHT NOW. 

We’ll be here when you get back.

Uncured paint, dirt, and oils present from the manufacturing process can remain on the finished product.  Tis is the same with offset smokers and pellet grills.

Some of those chemicals can be toxic and harmful to your health, not to mention infusing your food with a less than appealing aroma.

By seasoning before use, you’ll quickly remove all of those nasty production remnants and leave your smoker clean and free from any unwanted oil, solvent and paint residue.


Extending the Life of the Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

rust on an unseasoned smoker
Not what you want to see any time soon on a new smoker.

Regardless of the high quality coating they put on your smoker, if it’s made of metal…and it likely is…its ALWAYS at risk of rusting…eventually.

If you don’t take the time to season the new smoker, the presence of moisture during each smoking session will quickly age your smoker from the INSIDE, just like leaving it out in the rain uncovered would risk rusting it from the OUTSIDE.

Seasoning will not only take away leftover residue from the manufacturing stage, but it will also prevent rust, all the while curing the exterior paint to ensure your smoker is better able to handle exposure to the weather.

Essentially, the protective coating will ensure that all moisture will drip off the inside walls of the smoker, rather than get absorbed or stick to it.


How to Season a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

Here’s what you will need to season the smoker:

  • A Clean soft cotton cloth
  • A Bucket with a little mild gentle detergent and water.
  • Cooking oil with a high smoke point like Avocado or Grapeseed Oil
  • An Electrical Outlet
  • Optional: Smoking Wood Chips
  • Optional:  A few pieces of raw fatty meat like bacon or pork belly.

One word of advice, take it outside, unassembled, before you begin.

Then, follow these steps below:

  1. First, make sure to thoroughly clean inside walls and removable components such as the water pan, racks, and drip tray water and a cloth. We also suggest making sure to use a soft, cotton-like cloth to avoid getting scratches in the metal the accessories of a masterbuilt electric smoker
  2. Be cautious to not to SOAK any areas that are near electrical components.  Use a well wrung out cloth in these areas and never let water pool anywhere in the smoker.
  3. After you’ve gently washed down the interior and the accessories with water, wipe them down to prevent water spots from forming, and allow the smoker to air-dry.
  4. Assemble your smoker.  Place ALL the accessories and components inside the smoker such as the racks, hooks, water pan, wood chip tray, and drip pan. Make sure the exterior drip tray is in place behind the smoker. Put the wood chip loader, empty, into the side of the smoker and twist into position to lock.placing all components back in a masterbuilt electric smokerplacing the external grease catcher back on the masterbuilt electric smoker
  5. You’ll need cooking oil for this step! For the quickest results, we recommend using a flourless kind of high smoke point cooking oil like avocado or grapeseed.  Using a spray bottle makes this step even easier. Ideally, you’ll want to achieve a thin, even coat along the entirety of the smoker’s interior, and racks.  Keep the oil away from the electrical and heater elements at the bottom. There is no need to rub cooking oil on the OUTSIDE of an electric smoker. The cooking oil acts as a protective coating and will keep the interior safer from rust.seasoning a masterbuilt electric smoker
  6. After your smoker is cleaned, assembled, and the interior wiped down or sprayed with a very thin layer of cooking oil, go ahead and plug it in and turn it on.
  7. You’re going to be taking your smoker to the highest possible setting, which on many Masterbuilt electric smokers is 275°F and set the timer for 3 hours.setting the temperature on the masterbuilt electric smoker
  8. Make sure to open both the top and rear vents all the way as well.
  9. Close the door and allow the smoker to run for the full 3 hours and then cool. Electric smokers are great, and almost as convenient as Pellet Grills!

However, don’t get lazy with their convenience.

Make sure to always use electric smokers outside and to always use wood chips rather than pellets.

Optional Steps to Seasoning the Smoker

An additional option is to add wood to your wood chip tray while seasoning for the final hour to begin to add some smoky flavor/residue to the inside of your smoker.

loading wood chips into the masterbuilt electric smoker while seasoning

Some home BBQ pros will smoke some fatty pieces of leftover bacon (an oxymoron…I know) towards the end of the seasoning process as well to add some fatty residue and aroma to the inner walls of the new smoker.

Go ahead and throw these in for the last hour or two as well if you wish.  Do not let them burn or they will add a carbonized aroma to your smoker which is not what you want.


Re-Seasoning your Smoker

Throughout the life of your Masterbuilt electric smoker, it’s highly likely that you’re going to need to re-season it more than once.

While some purists claim to NEVER clean the inside walls of their electric smokers, the reality is sometimes you may find you have to.

Depending on your local weather, mold may form if you don’t use it for a long while, or you might spill some nasty greasy liquid down into in the bottom of the smoker.

If this occurs, and you feel you need to clean the smoker, use a good degreasing agent to help clean the racks and the inner walls and make sure to rise really well afterwards.

Then you will want to follow the same steps above to heat the inside of your smoker up to a high enough heat for 2-3 hours to kill any lingering mold and chemicals.

This isn’t a bad practice to put in place at the beginning of the season if haven’t used your smoker for a few months either.


Final Thoughts on Seasoning a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

So, there you have it, your step-by-step guide on how to season your new Masterbuilt electric smoker.

If you get stuck or forget a step, just refer back to our guide for inspiration and your new smoker will be prepped, primed, and ready to use in no time.


What Can I Smoke on my New Masterbuilt Electric Smoker?

So glad you asked!

Looking for some more smoky inspiration now that your smoker is seasoned and ready to go?

Check out some of our favorite recipes of both smoked food to try out at your next outdoor BBQ!

Trash Can Turkey – OK, technically not made in an electric smoker but one of the most fun ways there is to cook a Turkey…at over 700 degrees in only 2 hours!  You’ve got to check it out!

burning a fire in a trash can turkey

You’ve got to check it out!




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