Go Back Email Link

How to Season a New Smoker

Learn why you NEED to season that brand new smoker, and EXACTLY how to do it the RIGHT WAY. Whether it’s a new charcoal, gas, or electric smoker…we’ve got you covered.
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 1 Seasoned Smoker

Equipment

  • A Brand New Smoker

Ingredients
  

Seasoning a Charcoal Smoker

  • 1 Clean soft cotton cloth
  • 1 Bucket with a little mild gentle detergent and water.
  • 8 oz Cooking oil with a high smoke point like Avocado or Grapeseed Oil a spray bottle works best
  • 1 Chimney Full of Natural Lump Charcoal not briquets, and definitely no “Quick-Start” or “Rapid-Start” charcoal infused with lighter fluid.
  • 1 Charcoal Chimney
  • 1 Lighter
  • 1 Firestarter cube to light to chimney
  • Optional: Smoking Wood Chunks
  • Optional: A few pieces of raw fatty meat like bacon or pork belly.

Seasoning a Propane Gas Smoker

  • 1 Clean soft cotton cloth
  • 1 Bucket with a little mild gentle detergent and water.
  • 8 oz Cooking oil with a high smoke point like Avocado or Grapeseed Oil a spray bottle works best
  • 1 Relatively FULL tank of Propane
  • 1 Lighter
  • Optional: Smoking Wood Chunks
  • Optional: A few pieces of raw fatty meat like bacon or pork belly.

Seasoning an Electric Smoker

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

Instructions
 

Seasoning a Charcoal Smoker

  • First, make sure to thoroughly clean the smoker parts with soapy water and a soft cloth.
  • After you’ve gently washed down the interior with soap and water, rinse it well, wipe it down to prevent water spots from forming, and allow the smoker to air-dry.
  • Evenly coat along the entirety of the smoker’s interior, racks, AND EXTERIOR with a very THIN layer of cooking oil. Use a spray bottle for fastest results
  • Assemble your smoker.
  • Fill a chimney full with lump charcoal, not briquets, and then carefully light the charcoal.
  • While the chimney is heating up, add a good sized load of unlit charcoal to the firebox of the smoker. Once the chimney is totally ignited, carefully transfer the hot coals and dump them into the firebox.
  • Ensure that the vents are completely open to allow for optimum airflow.
  • Allow the smoker to reach around 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-3 hours. This will ensure any leftover production chemicals and solvents burn off.
  • Close the vents and let the charcoal snuff out and the smoker to completely cool before emptying ash and then using smoker for the first time.

Seasoning a Propane Gas Smoker

  • First, make sure to thoroughly clean the smoker parts with soapy water and a cloth. We also suggest making sure to use a soft, cotton-like cloth to avoid getting scratches in the paint finish.
  • After you’ve gently washed down the interior with soap and water, rinse it well, wipe it down to prevent water spots from forming, and allow the smoker to air-dry.
  • Apply the oil. Ideally, you’ll want to achieve a thin, even coat of oil along the entirety of the smoker’s interior, racks, AND EXTERIOR. Use a spray bottle to scheive the fastest results.
  • Assemble your smoker.
  • After the propane tank attached, open up the propane valve and light the burner on the smoker.
  • Ensure that the vents are completely open to allow for optimum airflow.
  • Allow the smoker to reach around 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-3 hours.
  • After 2-3 hours, turn off the gas and let the smoker cool down completely before using for the first time.

Seasoning an Electric Smoker

  • First, make sure to thoroughly clean the smoker parts with soapy water and a cloth. We also suggest making sure to use a soft, cotton-like cloth to avoid getting scratches in the paint finish.
  • 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.
  • After you’ve gently washed down the interior with soap and water, rinse it well, wipe it down to prevent water spots from forming, and allow the smoker to air-dry.
  • Assemble your smoker.
  • Apply the oil. You’ll want to achieve a thin, even coat along the entirety of the smoker’s interior, and racks. There is no need to rub cooking oil on the OUTSIDE of an electric smoker. Use a spray bottle for fastest results.
  • After your smoker is cleaned, assembled, and the interior wiped down with a very thin layer of cooking oil, go ahead and plug it in and turn it on.
  • Allow the smoker to reach around 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-3 hours. This will ensure any leftover production chemicals and solvents burn off.
  • After 2-3 hours, turn off the smoker and allow it to cool before using.

Optional Steps to Seasoning the Smoker

  • Add wood to your firebox or wood chip tray while seasoning to begin to add some smoky flavor/residue to the inside of your smoker.
  • Add some fatty pieces of leftover bacon or other meat to the cooking racks about 50% of the way through the seasoning time.

Video

Notes

Video courtesy of Low n Slow Basics
Keyword Charcoal, electric smoker, Prepare, propane smoker, Seasoning, Set up