10 Best Smoker Grills for Every Budget

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Credit: Joe Lingeman

While preparing for winter can feel like kind of a chore (like you’re hunkering down to hibernate), getting ready for summer is exciting. In addition to the vacations, beach visits, outdoor fun, and soul-quenching sunshine, summer brings with it a ton of seasonal ingredients and cooking styles that are most enjoyable for a limited time. At the top of that food-centric list is barbecue, and we mean real barbecue — which requires smoke.

The Best Smoker Grills

If you’ve never tasted traditional barbecue — meat cooked at a low temperature over many hours in the presence of smoking wood — you are truly missing out. Authentic barbecue is more tender, juicy, and richly flavorful than any food that’s simply grilled over gas burners, and to make it at home (which we recommend) you’ll need a smoker. Luckily, there are plenty of options to choose from based on your budget and how much outdoor space you have. Check out the best smoker grills available and get one now so you’re ready when cookout season is in full swing.

Do you have a smoker grill you love? We want to hear all about it! Tell us about your favorite find in the comments below.

1 / 10

For a super affordable option, get this compact smoker that has two levels of grill grates to hold plenty of food and an easy-access fuel door that lets you control your wood or charcoal to keep it at the right temperature. We also like that the lower grill grate has its own little door that you can open to check on food or move it around without taking the top off and letting out all the heat. Plus, if you want to do some grilling and don't need a lot of cooking space, you can remove the top section and just cook on the lower grate — less to clean up when you're done!

2 / 10

If you're new to this cooking method, this electric smoker is a user-friendly option that requires less know-how to get the temperature right — and is frankly much easier to clean than most other smokers. An electric coil at the bottom heats up a metal tray that can hold wood chips or pellets, and you can fill a separate tray with water if you want to play around with the moisture levels inside the smoker. Three generously-sized racks can hold an entire cookout's worth of meat and veggies.

3 / 10

From the reputable Pit Boss brand, this is one of our favorite budget-friendly smokers. It has a large hopper for your pellet fuel and comes with a stainless-steel meat probe so you can monitor your food's temperature while keeping the lid closed. Two grill racks inside give you plenty of room for ribs, briskets, and all your other favorite cuts of meat, and a metal rack at the bottom of the legs gives you storage space for any grilling tools or accessories.

4 / 10

We trust Weber when it comes to grilling and smoking, and this barrel-shaped outdoor smoker has a compact design that makes it great for small spaces. We especially like how the fuel door opens wide to give you easy access to adding or adjusting the wood or charcoal inside, as well as the fact that it has two grill racks so you can cook a decent amount of food. Because it doesn't have any digital temperature controls, you'll have to put forth a bit more effort to get the temperature right, but the rotating air flow vents help with that. Overall, it's a solid choice for creating authentic barbecue at home.

5 / 10
was $399.99

If you're looking for versatility and ease of use, this multifunctional smoker from Ninja is an excellent choice. Because it's electric, it has to be plugged in while using, but it gives you more cooking options than standard smokers — you can grill, smoke, and air fry food in it. A powerful internal convection fan and digital temperature control system help regulate the heat, and an included digital thermometer helps you keep an eye on your food's cooking progress. This smoker only needs a small amount of wood pellets to develop great, smoky flavor and it can fit on a table or grill stand.

6 / 10
Bed Bath & Beyond

If you want a full-service smoker that has robust features and is still easy to use, get this model from Z Grills. It has a pellet hopper and digital temperature control knob so you don't have to spend so much time fussing with the heat source to get the right internal temperature. It also has spacious side tables where you can set tools and serving platters. And, when you want to do some hot and fast grilling, you can get this baby up to 750 degrees Farenheit to get a perfect char on steaks, chicken, and burgers.

7 / 10

This full-size smoker offers a lot of cooking space so you can make tender barbecue for all your family and friends. The removable metal tray on the side gives you a place to either rest your tools or set down large cuts of meat and transport them to the serving area, while a large pellet hopper and temperature control dial help you maintain a consistent heat level. If you want a smoker that can feed a crowd, this is the one for you.

8 / 10
Traeger Grills

Want a smoker you can really take anywhere? Get this portable smoker from Traeger — it's the most high-quality compact smoker you'll find anywhere. It has a digital temperature control system that helps you dial in the heat level and works with wood pellets, which are convenient to travel with because they don't make any mess. This is ideal to bring on a camping trip or any place where you want to smoke — or grill — a delicious meal. It also includes a griddle so you can transform it into a multi-purpose cooking machine.

9 / 10
Traeger Grills

For a smoker that you can pack up and bring with you, get this model from Traeger — they're one of the most beloved names in grilling. It uses wood pellets and has collapsible legs (with wheels) so you can use it either standing up or put it on a table or truck bed. The grill grates are coated with porcelain to be extra-durable and the unit comes with a built-in digital temperature controller so you can get the exact heat level you want.

10 / 10
Ace Hardware

The Big Green Egg has dedicated fans because of how amazingly simple, compact, and powerful it is. You can use charcoal, wood, or a mix of both, and depending on how hot you make your fire, you can use this for smoking or grilling. A straightforward air flow system makes adjusting the temperature easy, and because the device is so self-contained, it can heat up in minutes.