The Masterbuilt electric smoker is made from steel with a black powder coated finish. It measures around 20” x 20” x 33”. Inside are four chromed steel racks, giving 730 square inches of cooking space. On the top of the unit is an electronic control panel, which controls cooking time and temperature. There’s a built in digital thermometer, with settings from 100 to 275 degrees Fahrenheit. Also inside are removable drip pan and water pan, as well as the heating element and wood chip holder. Wood chips can be loaded via a side door to allow the main door to remain closed. The element is powered by standard mains voltage and uses 800 watts of power. The whole unit is insulated to 100% efficiency.
Looking like a small black refridgerator, the Masterbuilt BBQ smoker is a compact unit, but with a mid-range capacity. It’s easy enough to set up and get working, the control panel is intuitive to use, and after that it just sits there getting on with the job. There’s even a timer that shuts the unit off when it’s finished, so you don’t even have to remember to do that.
There are four adjustable shelves inside, so plenty of space, although you might have to take a couple of them out if smoking a large bird, for instance. There’s a water pan for keeping the food moist. You don’t have to use water, of course. Try juice, or even wine, for a more fruity flavor.
I like the fact you can load more wood chips without opening the door, through the side panel, but it does mean you have to leave a decent gap on that side.
Cleaning up after is no more difficult than cleaning out the fridge. Strip it out and wipe it down, and wash the shelves and pans in the sink. I’ve got to say I’m impressed with the insulation on this Masterbuilt electric grill smoker. They claim it’s 100% insulated, and it certainly seems that way. Even when fully working the outside is no warmer than room temperature.
I do have a couple of issues with this electric barbecue smoker. The first is the Masterbuilt part, which is something of a misnomer. It isn’t built any better than many other products on the market, which is to say as cheaply as possible.
Secondly, and this is entirely personal, is this thing really a BBQ product? I think cooking with propane is pushing the boundaries, but electricity is just a step too far. Surely something you plug in and program like a microwave oven isn’t BBQing at all, but simply cooking.
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