“Why Should I Try Pellet Smoking?”
We’ve Told You Why You Should Buy a Grilla Grill. But Why Should You Even Be Pellet Smoking in the First Place? Shane Breaks it Down.
We get asked by customers: “Why should I buy a pellet grill in the first place?” There are a lot of misconceptions about cooking with pellets and many people assume it’s too complicated, but these people don’t truly understand what pellet grills are. Yes, there are electronics involved, which may seem odd at first. There are also new terms with pellet grilling, things like auger, hopper and fire pot. But don’t let that intimidate you. Wood pellet grills provide the best mix of versatility, flavor and convenience of any type of grill on the market. If you’re still asking yourself “what is a pellet grill?” or “how does a pellet grill work?”, follow this link to get up to speed. Otherwise, follow along and learn precisely why you need a pellet smoker.
In summary, here are my favorite pros:
- No flare ups
- Wood smoked flavor
- No learning curve
- Very fuel efficient, burning an average of one pound of pellets/hour of cook time
- No need to transport propane tanks
- Set n’ forget controls
- Very versatile
- Weather has little effect on the grill’s ability to maintain the temperature
- No over smoking your food
- Highly suited for busy people
- Grill and a smoker for one price
One Button to Flavor
There are other types of smokers but they can take some mastery and a significant time commitment to coax out the best results. There are gas grills, but honestly they just don’t provide the flavor that cooking over wood does. We can’t dispute the versatility of kamado grills, but they take some time investment and they are not as easy to light as a pellet grill.
A pellet grill can slow smoke a brisket or pork butt, grill a great burger or brat, and even sear a great steak all with the push of a button. There is no need for lighter fluid or even a match to get it started. You push a button and the electronic controls take over to start the grill and heat it to the temperature you select.
A Taste Like No Other
Now many will tell you that there simply is no replacement for the flavor you get from smoking. I agree. I grew up eating barbecue made by my grandfather in his restaurant. He stayed up all night, burned down oak and hickory into coals, and shoveled those coals into a block pit all night smoking pork shoulders for 14 hours or more. That level of care and putting in that kind of effort does produce the best flavor.
What if you could get that flavor but didn’t have to stay up all night or could just push a button, throw the meat on, and come back in 8 hours? Well that is the exactly what you are able to do with a pellet grill/smoker. Yes, there is a minor difference in flavor but what you gain in convenience more than makes up for it.
Fighting the Wind
Have you ever tried to cook something on a grill or smoker on a windy or cold day? If so, you likely have experienced the frustrating fight of the grill spiking up in temperature and then wildly dropping back down. What if you didn’t have to fight these swings and there was a device to manage this for you? Pellet grills do just that.
The electronics, auger, and fire pot all work together to push more fuel to the fire when needed, but also work just as easily to reduce the amount of fuel when required. The result is a cooker that stays within about 15 degrees of wherever you set it, no matter the weather conditions. It can be below freezing outside and spitting snow, but you’ll be inside while the pellet grill does the work for you.
Forget Flare Ups
When is the last time you were grilling on your gas grill and you ran inside to grab some ingredients, and come back to find flames shooting out of your grill? It happens often and it happens quickly. Flare ups are a real issue on most grills, but not with pellet grills. The fire pot is shielded from direct contact with the food by a heat deflector and grease drip tray.
Quick Heat Up
Have you ever craved grilled chicken but talked yourself out of it because of the time it takes to get your charcoal grill lit and hot enough to cook on? With a pellet grill as you walk by your grill you simply press the power button, select the desired cooking temperature, and walk away. Within 10min the grill is lit, waiting for you to put on that chicken you were craving. Pellet grills allow busy people to grill at times they thought they couldn’t, while still delivering great flavor. Pellet grills have the convenience of a gas grill but with the added flavor of cooking over wood.
- Requires electricity
- Not recommended to use in wet conditions
- They can sear, but do best if you use an accessory such as Grill Grates to help
- Moving parts that could fail
Since electronics are used for items like the digital control, pellet grills do require electricity to run. So that limits their ability to be used in situations where power is a commodity. However, I’ve seen pellet grills run on battery packs in competition. Nonetheless, the requirement for electricity can be perceived as a negative.
Pellet grills are less suited for use in wet environments. The electronics can handle some incidental splashing but it’s not recommended. Wood pellets don’t do well in wet environments, but frankly neither does charcoal. The same precautions should be taken for keeping pellets and charcoal dry.
Most pellet grills can reach a temperature of 500 degrees. This does allow you to sear, but the best searing happens at 600-700 degrees. To achieve this it is recommended to use a product like Grill Grates to help create a better sear. Including this in the list of cons is arguable in my opinion, but I included it to be completely upfront.
Quality Makes the Difference
You will also have charcoal grill stalwarts point out that those “new-fangled electronics and moving parts will eventually break.” As with anything with moving parts things can happen, that’s why it is important buy from a company with a great warranty, but even more important buy from a company with the best support. Grilla Grills offers a great warranty with, what I feel, is the most responsive support in the industry. You call our number or email us and you speak to someone who solve your problems. Better than that, you get a response that can typically be measured in minutes instead of days.
There isn’t another grilling platform that offers the mix of flavor, convenience and flexibility that pellet grills do. They are absolutely the ease of gas, but with the flavor benefits of charcoal or wood.
Give a pellet grill a try & I know you’re going to love it. Nothing compares to the great taste of a wood smoked meal.