When you think of barbecuing, wood or charcoal might come to mind. But the truth is that there’s no need to burn a fire, or even use any sort of fuel, when you can use a pellet grill.
Pellet grills are one of those kitchen appliances that are not only fun and convenient but also make your cooking experience more enjoyable. If you want to cook on a barbecue or smoker, then this is for you.
So what exactly is a pellet grill?
A pellet grill uses pellets as fuel. That’s right; instead of having to burn wood chips or chunks, it uses compressed sawdust pellets (also known as “wood pellets”) that are created from hardwoods like hickory, oak, maple, apple, cherry, beech, birch, and mesquite. You can find these pellets in grocery stores, hardware stores, and online.
But before you buy a best pellet smokers reviews, you should know what makes them so great. Let’s take a look at how they work.
What Makes Pellet Grills Different From Other Barbecue Devices
You may have seen other types of grills that use different types of fuel. For instance, if you’ve ever cooked using briquettes, you’ll notice they don’t smell too good. They don’t give off an aroma like real wood does either. And while you can buy briquettes, you don’t really need to when you can get wood pellets.
Another thing about pellet grills is that they’re designed to produce less smoke than traditional smokers. This is because most pellet grills use convection heating rather than the type of indirect heat used by traditional smokers. While this is true, it doesn’t mean that pellet grills aren’t capable of producing smoky food. In fact, several pellet grills now offer a built-in wood chip burner that allows you to add wood chips and smoke to your meal without needing to constantly flip over your meat.
The other big difference between pellet grills and smokers is convenience. Unlike smokers, which require constant tending to, pellet grills can be left unattended until ready to use. This means you won’t have to worry about the mess that comes with burning wood or coal on the stovetop. Plus, since pellet grills use fuel that’s already been cut into pieces, you don’t have to worry about buying and storing wood in advance.
As for price, you can expect to pay somewhere around $500 – $1,000 for a quality pellet grill. But if you’re interested in getting a bargain, many of these models are available for under $300. The best part is that most pellet grills last anywhere from five to ten years, making them a long-term investment.
Types of Pellet Grills
There are two main types of pellet grills: portable and stationary. Portable ones tend to be lighter and smaller, meaning you can easily move them from location to location. Stationary ones are usually larger and heavier, and some are quite large enough to sit on a table top. Some people prefer the portability of portable grills, while others prefer the stability of stationary ones.
As far as features go, pellet grill manufacturers generally include things like temperature control, digital readouts, and adjustable racks. These are all great features to have in a pellet grill because they allow you to adjust them according to the size of your meat and how much time you’re willing to spend cooking. It’s always nice to be able to control your grill.
If you’re looking for a model that will fit your budget but still includes many of the necessary features, check out our list of the top 10 pellet grill models on Amazon.
How Do You Use a Pellet Grill?
Here are some tips on how to use a pellet grill properly:
Before starting, be sure to turn off the exhaust fan. Then add pellets to the hopper and set the burners to medium high. Be careful not to overload the hopper. The pellets should be placed approximately halfway up the sides of the grill.
Next, place your food directly over the burners and cover the lid. You’ll see smoke rise from the vents near the front of the grill. Once you see this, wait about 45 minutes before opening the lid to check the food. During this time, the heat will circulate throughout the grill.
Once the food has finished cooking, open the lid and let the grill cool completely. When you’re done, remove the food and discard the bones.
Now that you know how to use a pellet grill, try making some tasty meals with this handy appliance!
How to Cook With a Pellet Grill
Cooking on a pellet grill isn’t difficult, although it does involve a few extra steps compared to cooking on a regular grill. Here are some guidelines for cooking with a pellet grill:
Start with cold meat or fish. When preparing meat, make sure it’s chilled first—this prevents the fat from melting onto the meat during the cooking process.
Allow the meat to warm up slightly before placing it on the grill. Place the meat on the grate and close the lid. After a couple of minutes, open the lid and check the food to ensure it’s done to your liking. If you need more time, continue checking every 5 minutes.
Keep the meat away from direct heat. A pellet grill works by circulating hot air from the top down. As such, the hotter parts of the grill should be away from the food. Don’t put your steak directly over the flame, for example.
Don’t forget about the sides. Pellets burn very quickly, so you’ll need to rotate the food often to avoid overcooking. Keep in mind that the sides of a burger will take longer to cook than the center. Remember, too, that you can’t sear a burger on a pellet grill.
Add flavor during the cooking process. To add additional flavors to your food, sprinkle seasoning blends like salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder on the food after it’s cooked.
With these tips in mind, you can start cooking delicious meals on your pellet grill!