How to Season an Offset Smoker? why do you season a smoker?

When you buy an offset smoker it’s suggested to be seasoned properly rather than typical cleaning prior to your first cook. The process of seasoning an offset smoker is just like the seasoning of grills or camp ovens, need to create an oil-coated protective layer to prevent it from dust and rust. Although, some people take it casually and ignore offset smoker seasoning or some of them do not do it properly. For proper cleaning, it’s necessary to know how to season an offset smoker?

Why should need the seasoning of offset smokers?

The newly purchased offset smoker looks pretty neat and clean as just ready for cooking, then why do you season a smoker? A freshly manufactured offset smoker always has some oil, scrap, and is also contaminated with some dust particles while shipping.

It does not only exposed to rust but also spoils your food by peeling off paint from the inside surface. So, it’s necessary to season it for providing a deep cleaning and shielding layer to make an offset smoker more durable and long-lasting

Items you news for seasoning:

  • Dish soap
  • Coating oil either cooking oil, cooking spray, olive or vegetable oil
  • Charcoal
  • Paper towel

How to season an offset smoker? Step by step guide:

Step-1: Proper Grates cleaning

Firstly, you have to clean the grates before assembling the smoker, if it is already assembled then usually the grates are removable. Just take out the rack, grates, and water pan from the smoker and start cleaning all these stuff one by one.

You can wash out the grates with dish soap or use some other grill cleaner, while washing use the scrubbing brush to remove all the debris properly. 

After washing them thoroughly, take a soft cloth or towel and wipe them down completely to prevent rusting. Then left them aside to dry out naturally during the whole cleaning of the offset smoker. Put them back when you have done with the rest of the seasoning.

Step -2: Coating with Oil

After cleaning the grates properly following the above procedure, now the next and most important step is oil coating. If you want to know perfectly how to season a smoker? Then the understanding of this step is foremost.

Close up on man’s hand spraying oil on barbecue gas grill outdoor in the backyard, Preparation for roasting On Grill, summer family picnic, food on the nature.

Although you can take any oil like canola, palm, olive, or any other vegetable oil, personally I recommend you canola oil because of its high smoke point. It provides you with the best oil protection apart from others.

It does not matter you coated the inside smoker with liquid oil or in spray, however, spray-on oil is not only simple but also a more efficient way of even oil distribution. Sprayed the oil in the whole cooking chamber and in the firebox apart from stainless steel cooking grills or grates.

Be remembered do not coat it with water it will cause rust and may damage the inside surface as well.

Step -3: Light it up For Seasoning

Here is another vital step of how to season an offset smoker? The cooking oil you coated takes almost 15 to 20 minutes to sit entirely, during this period open all the doors as well to make sure there are no fumes left inside the chamber.

Furthermore, you can start lightening up the charcoal inside the charcoal chimney starter it takes 20 minutes to light up properly, put them into the firebox of the smoker.

Make sure the dampers are open and all the doors of the smoker are closed after putting the charcoal into the firebox. For perfect seasoning, you must have a consistent temperature of around 160°F for 2 hours that helps to give a protective layer and bright coating to the inside coated oil.

Some people use different wood or wood chips for seasoning, according to my own experience there is not any best wood to season a smoker.

Step -4: Maintaining the Inside Temperature

It‘s not only to achieve the recommended temperature of 160°F, but you also need to carefully monitor and maintain the constant temperature of around 160°F continuously up to 2 hours.

There is a temperature gauge that allows you to do this step properly, whenever it indicates the temperature drop, put more charcoal to reach up to 160°F. This process not only provides a perfect oil coating but also burns off any residue that is left behind.

You will find the protected shiny inside surface at the end of this process. While we are one step away and I am sure you have learned many things about how to season a new smoker? 

Step -5: Cleaning  

It does not mean an abrasive cleaning or hard scrapping of the offset smoker interior. Once you have done with oil coating and burning out the charcoal, you just need to wait for an hour to cool down the offset smoker.

When it’s cool down to room temperature, then start to wipe down the whole inside surface of the offset smoker with a soft cloth or paper towel, the use of any hard material for cleaning is not good, it may scratch off the freshly applied coating.

Cleaning will wipe down all the residue left behind after coating and charcoal burning. That’s how to season an offset smoker effectively and efficiently without any risk of rusting or surface damage.

What happens if you don’t season a smoker?

After purchasing a new offset smoker, if you just clean it rather than a season. Then it not only spoils the flavor of your food because of dust, and some residue that is left behind after offset smoker manufacturing but is also exposed the smoker to rust. So, make sure to season it thoroughly prior to your first cook.

Bottom Line:

Even though seasoning an offset smoker is very simple and takes a few hours, it’s essential to season an offset smoker to make it more reliable. Casual cleaning is not enough for the inside protection of the cooking chamber. 

So, always make sure to season your newly purchased offset smoker to enjoy the smoky flavor of food. Hopefully, this buying guide will help you to know how to season an offset smoker?

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