If you are in a hurry and want to find out what the Vertical Pellet Smoker is is then we would recommend the Pit Boss 7-series Vertical Pellet Smoker.
Are you looking for a way to up your BBQ game? Whether you sick of the same old steaks and burgers or looking for a new grilling change, a vertical pellet smoker may be just the thing you need.
Read our vertical pellet smoker review to learn how these handy devices can change your life and improve your next backyard BBQ.
Here is our list of Vertical Pellet Smoker Reviews:
- Pit Boss 7-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker
- Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smoker
- Camp Chef XXL Vertical Pellet Grill And Smoker
- Masterbilt MB20250118 Vertical Pellet Smoker
- Pit Boss 5-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker
The Best Vertical Pellet Smokers
We researched the options, experimented, and combed through vertical pellet smoker reviews to build our list of the best devices available.
Pit Boss makes some of the best grills on the market, and its 7-series vertical pellet smoker delivers. Users will appreciate the efficiency and attractiveness of this smoker.
- Cooking capacity: 1548 square inches
- Pellet capacity: up to 40 pounds
- Dimensions: 28” x 29” x 53”
- Weight: 131 pounds
- Safe to use for more than 24 hours.
- Automatic start and shut-off features add safety and convenience.
- Digital controls make it easier to program and monitor temperatures.
- The large window in front allows you to watch your food cook.
- The LED display fades over time.
- You may experience notable temperature swings throughout the cooking process.
If you’re looking for a large capacity smoker, you could do worse than this one by Louisiana Grills. Its sleek, black frame is heavy-gauge steel, so it looks nice and resists rust.
- Cooking capacity: 1979 square inches
- Pellet capacity: 180 pounds
- Dimensions: 58” x 29” x 28”
- Weight: 315 pounds
- This smoker has a sturdy frame, large window in front for easy viewing, and locking caster wheels.
- Six cooking grates give you plenty of space to cook different types of meat to appease large crowds.
- You get a large temperature range of 100°F to 420°F to give you greater range for cooking.
- It’s a little challenging to remove, empty, and replace the grease pan.
- It’s one of the more expensive units.
As far as vertical pellet smokers go, the Camp Chef XXL is quite versatile. Aside from the standard cooking grates, this smoker includes jerky racks and a hanging rack with sausage hooks.
- Cooking capacity: 2400 square inches
- Pellet capacity: 18 pounds
- Dimensions: 24” x 15.5” x 55”
- Weight: 145 pounds
- A large cooking capacity with the option to make jerky and sausage.
- One of the best temperature control systems on the market with Smart Smoke Technology, digital temperature control, and internal temperature readings.
- It’s easy to clean up, including the drip pans.
- The drip cups are on the small side.
- You may notice some smoke escapes.
BBQ buffs seeking a low-profile smoker with plenty of cooking capacity may prefer this Masterbilt. It’s smaller than some of the others on this list, but it can still manage six turkeys or eight racks of ribs, or sixteen chickens at one time!
- Cooking capacity: 977 square inches
- Pellet capacity: 18 pounds
- Dimensions: 52.75” x 36.2” x 24.6”
- Weight: 111 pounds
- This smoker is a middle of the road option as far as price and capacity.
- Temperature ranges from 180°F up to 350°F.
- Take advantage of the preset smoke cycles for easy temperature control.
- Temperatures don’t always remain steady.
- Masterbilt customer service leaves a lot to be desired.
The Pit Boss 5-series is smaller than the 7-series, but it still delivers more power than many of the other options. If you like the 7-series but it seems like a little too much smoker for you, the 5-series may be a reasonable alternative.
- Cooking capacity: 1513 square inches
- Pellet capacity: 60 pounds
- Dimensions: 52.5” x 60” x 26”
- Weight: 186 pounds
- Includes five racks to accommodate different types of meat.
- Temperatures range from 150°F up to 450°F.
- This smoker has auto start and auto shut-off functions.
- Sturdy construction and appealing appearance with a copper-colored door.
- Includes a one-year warranty.
- The temperature may be a little frustrating for some people.
- Though it has a digital panel, it’s not as user friendly as other options.
How to Choose a Vertical Pellet Smoker
Vertical pellet smokers or upright pellet smokers look and function differently from horizontal, or offset smokers. If you only want to smoke meat, a vertical pellet smoker may be an excellent choice for you. However, they can’t grill or bake like horizontal smokers.
How Do Vertical Pellet Smokers Work?
Vertical pellet smokers serve one, glorious purpose. They cook meat at a low temperature to preserve flavor and texture.
A vertical smoker is taller and narrower than its horizontal counterpart. It consists of a cooking chamber on top of the heat source.
Light the fuel in the lower chamber and let it go. The hot air circulates around the cooking chamber to cook the meat.
Why Should You Use a Vertical Pellet Smoker?
Vertical pellet smokers have a lot of perks over other types of smokers.
- They have a lower profile than the horizontal alternatives.
- You can use flavored wood pellets to alter the taste of your food.
- You can cook multiple types of meat at the same time.
- Vertical smokers do an exceptional job of high heat grilling and searing meat.
- You can set the smoker to cook and let it do the work, much like an oven.
The Downside of Using Vertical Pellet Smokers
Even though there aren’t a lot of negatives about vertical pellet smokers, there are a few you need to know about.
- Vertical pellet smokers only serve one purpose, to smoke meat. There’s no room for versatility with these grills, so if you want to do more, you’ll need additional equipment.
- Even though manufacturers market them as “set it and forget it” grills, you need to monitor the fuel to make sure you have enough.
- They don’t slow-cook meat, so some dishes, like pork shoulders, don’t work well.
What to Consider When Choosing a Vertical Pellet Smoker
Purchasing a vertical pellet smoker is an investment, so you want to weigh your options carefully before buying.
How Much Room Do I Have?
Measure the area where you plan to park your vertical smoker. Make sure whichever product you choose fits comfortably in the space with plenty of room to accommodate the heat it gives off.
Determine Your Desired Capacity
Size and capacity are two different factors for vertical pellet smokers. While these smokers tend to have lower profiles than other grills, you want to know it can accommodate enough meat for your needs.
Mind the Materials
You may not want to compromise on the construction of your smoker. Look for high-quality materials and make sure the vertical pellet smoker reviews don’t note a lot of peeling paint or rust concerns.
Note: remember that you can always apply a coat of high-temperature paint if the steel is high-quality.
Is the Price Right?
Smokers sell at a variety of price points, and when it comes to vertical smokers, you have a wide selection. You don’t want to go too low, but make sure you set a ceiling and stick to it.
How to Choose Wood Pellets for Your Vertical Pellet Smoker
Wood pellets fuel your smoker, but they can also add flavor to your food. Knowing how to choose the right pellets could be the difference in your next meal.
What are Wood Pellets?
Wood pellets take the place of gas, charcoal, and wood logs to fuel your smoker. Though made from real wood, it is mostly sawdust salvaged from lumber mills. Manufacturers compress the sawdust with natural plant tissue to create the pellets.
Smoking Pellets vs. Heating Pellets
When purchasing wood pellets for your smoker, make sure you get smoking pellets. While heating pellets won’t necessarily harm your food, they were made to heat buildings, not flavor meat.
Picking the Right Flavors
Flavoring food with wood pellets sounds strange, but you won’t think it odd once you taste the finished meat. Different flavors work better with certain foods, though you should experiment to choose the best ones for your tastes.
- Alder woodworks with salmon, poultry, and game birds.
- Try apple pellets for poultry, pork, lamb, and seafood.
- Cherry wood and Oak work well with all meats, especially when blended with other flavors.
- Hickory is excellent with pork and ribs.
- Maple can enhance the taste of poultry, vegetables, and cheese.
- Mesquite and walnut work best with red meat.
- Try pecan wood with your poultry.
Our Verdict: The Best Vertical Pellet Smoker
Comparing price, capacity, and features, the Pit Boss 7-series Vertical Pellet Smoker has the most to offer. It holds a massive quantity of pellets, so you don’t have to worry about restocking. Factor in the extensive temperature range and convenient features, and it’s hard to beat.
Vertical smokers allow you to make a lot of tasty meat fast. Using wood pellets adds depth to your flavor making it superior to charcoal, gas, and electric alternatives. Isn’t it time to take your backyard BBQ up a notch?