Final Thought on Adding Wood to Your Smoker, Electric vs Charcoal Smoker (Which Is Best For You? One basic secret is to find the right wood, adding it only when it needs to be added. How much wood you should add to the fire, and when you should throw it on will also depend on the type of smoker you are using, and whether wood is your primary heat source or not. Many barbecue aficionados out there go to great lengths to match the flavor of the wood they burn to the dish they are cooking. If you’re only going to be smoking your food for an average of 20 minutes, it would be fine to use a few cups of chips. But fear not, we have a solution later in the article! While there is no definitive rule, smoking experts recommend adding your smoker wood every five to six hours. If the log ends are dark and cracked, you know they’re dry enough to burn. Was it too much? Several factors determine how often you need to add wood to your smoker. Add 3 to 4 wood chunks to start with, and replenish as needed it (when the smoke ceases to flow). So if you're cooking with charcoal and using the minion method you could probably just add enough wood to the beginning of the cook to last the three hour window and then go to strait charcoal afterward. Firstly, you need to make sure that all of the wood chips already in the smoker are burned out before you add any more. Every time you do a cook, make notes in a little diary. Assuming you don’t have any fancy gas ignition systems on your offset smoker, the best way to light your coals is with a chimney starter. The wood chips do not ignite or burn, they only smolder, and it is the smoldering that produces the smoke. First things first, it’s essential to understand that the wood chips do not aid the heating or cooking process in any way. Too much smoke can cause the meat to taste bitter, and sometimes it makes it impalatable. “It’s up to you” and be done with it. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. After reading this short guide, you’ll know exactly how often to add them, but as with most things in life, the honest answer is that it depends! There are two groups of meat smokers. Add 3 to 4 wood chunks to start with, and replenish as needed it (when the smoke ceases to flow). Fire up your smoker, and do a ‘dry run’ as it were to find out. Check out this table for a list of the best woods you want to use. Grilling With Wood Chips On Charcoal. Everyone has different tastes and palettes, and because you don’t need a lot of wood chips to smoke, it’s easy and cheap enough to experiment with various meats and smoking intensities. Any overspill is not only a waste, but it will probably fall onto the element and catch fire. The next factor to think about is what you’re smoking. How to Use Wood Chunks in an Electric or Gas Smoker . But how often? If you’re smoking fish or small bits of chicken, then you would add a small number of wood chips at the start, then won’t have to add any more wood chips to the smoker simply because the meat cuts are so small, they cook quickly (before the initial wood chips have stopped smoking) and don’t require as much smoke. When to Wrap Brisket, How and What With – If At All. It’s important to give your smoker that first dry run, to work out exactly how much smoking time it gives you. On average two or three handfuls of chips over direct heat is enough to produce enough smoke for a smoky flavour. Some people add one or two cups of chips on top of previously used chips each time. The first step you should do is adding wood chips into the box of chips tray before turning on the smoker. How often you need to add wood to your smoker depends essentially on the following factors and the general rules: The type of smoker you are using. Experts agree that whether or not you soak the wood depends largely on what you’re smoking and how long you’re smoking. Return the grate and add the food: directly over the wood chunks for direct grilling; next to or between the wood chunks for indirect grilling. Since it is a new GOSM do you have a cast smoke box, that is what I have and it works fine, mix in a couple of chunks of lump charcoal along with your chunks of smoke wood.