You have all the ingredients in place to create your barbeque masterpiece, and you are ready to send that tantalizing smell all over your neighborhood. But do you have an efficient smoker thermometer? Can you guarantee that your meat will be cooked at the right temperature? A smoker thermometer is a necessary piece of equipment in the barbeque process. It takes time and acquired skill to turn out an impressive barbeque meal.
The right thermometer is also essential to guarantee that your meat is properly cooked. To avoid any issue with improperly cooked meat, and to achieve the quality barbecue that will have your family and guests longing for more of your fabulous fare, invest in a smoker thermometer that is trustworthy and efficient.
What to look for when buying
A quality, durable and efficient smoker thermometer is your primary consideration when you are selecting a thermometer. However, you need specific information to help you get a device that is user-friendly and provides accurate readings.
The meat probe is inserted into the meat to give actual readings. It is advisable to buy a thermometer with at least two probes so you can monitor the internal temperature of the meat and also the grill’s temperature. If you want to check the temperature of several food items, then splurge and buy a thermometer with several probes.
Pay attention to the digital display on the thermometer. The information should be easy on the eyes and should be clear, even if you are some distance away. Ensure that there is a backlight that will highlight the information for easier reading.
The sound of the alarm system should be loud and distinct so that you know when to check on your smoker. If your thermometer is connected to an app, then your smartphone should give you clear alerts. You need a device with built-in settings to reduce time spent at the smoker and a countdown timer so that you know when food reaches the required temperature.
Check the range on the thermometer before buying. You need long range so that you can manage your smoker from a fair distance away, which frees you to engage in other activities. Thermometers can range from 150 ft to 500 ft. Stay within range to control your smoker or you could have serious problems with the quality of your food.
You can find a thermometer to fit any budget. However, quality brands will cost more. If you are crazy about super gadgets with Wi-Fi connections etc, you can still access a reasonably priced thermometer that will effectively monitor your cooking.
Different types of Digital Smoker Thermometers
There are many options available for you to choose from, just like with any gadget or gear. Below is a breakdown of the main categories that you will be selecting from.
One Probe – This is a thermometer that has one probe. You will need to choose between meat and grate temperature.
You could use it to read the temperature of the grate until it reaches your target temperature, then transfer it to the meat to check for doneness. The price difference between single and dual probe thermometers are so small that it is really not worth the cost of buying a single probe model.
Dual Probe (or more) These probes and sensors have two probes that allow you to simultaneously read the temperature of the meat at the grate and inside it. This is a great idea.
You don’t have to stop there. There are also digital grill thermometers that come with 4 or 6 meat probes. You can monitor the temperature of multiple levels in your cooker and different meats with so many probes.
Multi-probe thermometers have one problem: there are too many wires. You might not like the look of your home theater setup if you don’t have to deal with all the wires.
Infrared Temperaturometers — This thermometer allows you to quickly read the temperature of any item in your barbecue, without having to contact it. These thermometers are not ‘leave-in’ devices but are great for reading the temperature of your grate or flattop griddles, or even a pizza stone.
They can’t read the internal temperature of your meat or let you know when it’s done. One probe thermometer could be used in combination with another to monitor the meat and grate.
Wired and Wireless – There seems to be a wireless option available for all things, even wireless smoker thermometers. A wired unit is better, but you will need to be there to monitor the cook’s progress. You can monitor the temperature of your smoker and meat remotely using a wireless thermometer. This is usually done via your smartphone.
Both units work the same way, so if you don’t mind being close to your smoker, a wired thermometer might work for you. A wireless receiver for your thermometer is a great option for longer cooks or busy hosts who entertain.
How we reviewed and how ratings were awarded
We aim to assist consumers with trustworthy information and to highlight the qualities of the best brands in the market. We selected the top thermometers through a rigorous process which included eliminating inferior products, extensive research on quality and types of thermometers, feedback from actual users and recommendations from experts in the food industry.
Our ratings were awarded based on:
- The durability of the thermometer
- The level of functionality
- The range
- Strength of the probes and ability to withstand heat
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Accuracy of the temperature readings
- The versatility of the preset features
- Life of the warranty
After a systematic review and lengthy deliberations, our selection of the six best smoker thermometers is listed below.
- ThermoPro TP 16 BBQ Grill Thermometer
- Maverick ET 733 Long Range Wireless Dual Probe BBQ Thermometer
- Inkbird IBT- 4XS Thermometer
- ThermoPro TP20 Wireless Thermometer
- Weber iGrill 2 Thermometer
- NutriChef Smart Bluetooth BBQ Grill Thermometer
ThermoPro has produced a top product that sells at an affordable price. The TP 16 is compact but functions at a top-level. The thermometer is suitable for meat or stove top and has a programmable alert with preset temperatures for particular foods.
The temperatures are available in Fahrenheit and Celsius. There is a switch for temperature and to turn the device on and off. The temperature ranges from 32 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit.
The probe measures 6.5 inches and can also monitor baking products. The probe and wire can withstand maximum heat of 716 degrees Fahrenheit. The thermometer also has count up and count down features. The magnetic back facilitates easy storage and can be attached to metal surfaces for easier handling.
The name Maverick is synonymous with the production of quality barbecue equipment. The Maverick ET 733 thermometer has secured a place on the list of top-performing thermometers. The thermometer is a wireless dual probe with an extensive range of up to 300 feet. The built-in alarm gives an alert when your meat reaches the required temperature. If your food or smoker is not at the preferred temperature, the wireless receiver will send an alert.
The thermometer’s versatility shows up in its offerings of fifteen preset temperatures which will guide you to cook lamb, pork, duck, fish, and several other types of meat. You have the option to customize the temperature.
The thermometer features a backlit screen, for easier reading at night. The probes are three feet and can take a maximum temperature of 716 degrees Fahrenheit. Other features include a count-up and countdown timer and a built-in stand. You also get a remote receiver and transmitter, ambient probe, and meat probe.
This sleekly designed Inkbird thermometer carries a wide temperature range from 32 degrees Fahrenheit to 572bdegrees Fahrenheit. It boasts a high accuracy rate. It has four probes which give you the option of cooking different meats at the same time. The Bluetooth thermometer uses an algorithm to determine how much time is left until the food is completely cooked.The remote thermometer sends an alarm when the cook reaches the preset temperature
The package includes a rechargeable battery with a bonus of 40 hours of charge. So you will avoid frequent battery replacement. Another feature is the magnetic design of the thermometer, which means it can be attached to your large kitchen appliances
ThermoPro is a well-known manufacturer of cooking and grilling equipment for domestic and commercial use. Their brand of thermometers is popular in grilling and cooking circuits. The ThermoPro TP20 Wireless Meat Thermometer has features like dual probes which monitor food, as well as your oven or smoker. This device gives you the flexibility of checking your food up to 300 feet away, so you are not forced to closely monitor your cooking.
The thermometer is easy to use and boasts a large LCD which shows food and oven temperature. The built-in backlight is an added advantage that helps to make readings clearer when there is limited lighting. The timer’s design includes a count-up and count-down feature, which is convenient for longer cooks. When the preset temperature is reached, the receiver will beep and flash to alert you that your food is ready.
The TP20 comes with preset temperatures for 9 types of meat. You have the option to change these settings to meet your requirements. Another feature is the stainless steel probes which last and the step-down tip design gives accurate temperature readings. The probe wires are sturdily built and can withstand maximum temperatures of 716 degrees Fahrenheit.
The Weber brand is well known in the barbecuing industry. Another of their products that are designed to improve your cooking experience is the Weber iGrill 2 Thermometer. This product is compact and easy on the eyes. The surface is designed with an LED display and large numbers for easy readings.
The thermometer’s probes have a four meat capacity and are heat resistant up to 716 degrees Fahrenheit. Also included is Bluetooth connectivity so you can monitor your meal from the app on your phone. This device has preset temperatures and monitors temperatures during cooking. The batteries, which are included, give up to 200 hours of power.
The NutriChef Smart Thermometer is fairly lightweight but provides solid efficiency in the job it was designed to do. The stainless steel probes can withstand heat temperatures of up to 482 degrees Fahrenheit, while the stainless steel cable wires up to 716 degrees Fahrenheit the probes can be left safely inside the smoker. The thermometer is equipped with a wireless range of 328 feet outdoors range and 100 feet indoor range. The thermometer’s alarm system will alert you when your meat has reached the desired temperature.
Other features include immediate notification if you move outside the wireless Bluetooth range. The versatile design allows six probes and you can check the temperature in Celsius or Fahrenheit. The backlight on the LCD allows for comfortable temperature readings even at night,
A smoker thermometer is not a very large device and is fairly easy to use. However, this device is used when cooking, so there is a lot of exposure to heat. When using your thermometer, pay attention to the manufacturer’s instructions for using the thermometer.
- Many thermometers are wireless and are powered by batteries. Always check to ensure that batteries are placed securely. The probes should be properly connected to the transmitter so that the temperature can be easily read
- The transmitter should not be too close to the heat, as this can affect the transmitter’s functions. The probe should be placed firmly into the food or meat, to ensure that the correct temperature is recorded and the food is completely cooked.
- Improperly cooked food can lead to illnesses.
- Be vigilant about monitoring your food. Although some thermometers provide long ranges, remember for wireless thermometers if you step out of range, you lose control over your cooking.
- Use suitable gloves when removing probes to avoid burns.
Care and Maintenance
It is important to take care of your thermometer, so you will enjoy maximum benefits and accurate readings. Always follow the maintenance guidelines provided by the manufacturer.
- Make sure that you understand all the functions and know how to use them.
- Remove the probe from the thermometer after it has cooled down.
- Wash the probe thoroughly with warm soapy water.
- Rinse and dry with an absorbent cloth.
- Avoid immersing the thermometer in water even if there is a water-resistant feature. Wipe the surface of the thermometer with a damp cloth.
- Always check the batteries before using and replace the batteries as soon as possible.
Why You Need Thermometer For Your Smoker?
Ask any chef or pitmaster and they will tell you that cooking can be both an art and a science.
Artistry is in the presentation and in making creative choices about what to cook and how to flavor it. Science? It’s all about cooking at the right temperature and for the right time.
Scientists don’t measure things by their eyes, so you shouldn’t either at the BBQ smoker. A thermometer is required to get accurate temperature readings.
A serious pitmaster must know two temperatures: the smoker and the temperature of the meat.
These are important information. The temperature at the grate height will tell you if the heat level is right for your cooking style. Smokers will typically have temperatures between 225 and 250 degrees F (107 and 121 degrees C).
Knowing the temperature of the meat will tell you if it is safe to eat and at what stage of doneness. Do you really want to trust all-day brisket to the eyes? Your health and the health of your family.
These two variables will greatly increase your chances of achieving delicious meat.
Your Smokers Built in Thermometer Is Almost Inutile
The lid thermometer is a nice tool, but it is primarily used to indicate whether the smoker or grill is hot. They are often inaccurate.
Let’s suppose, however, that you have an unusually accurate lid thermometer. That would be enough. Not a chance.
The lid thermometer displays temperature exactly where it says it is: up in the lid or dome. This is because it is way above the grate which means that it is also far above the heat source.
Temperature differences between the grate (or the top) and the lid can reach as high as 50 degrees F (28 degrees Celsius). That’s huge. The lid temperature has no significance because the food is located where the grate is and not up in it.
There are many types of smoker thermometers on the market, with a wide range of exceptional features. You can now choose the one that is best suited for your cooking needs, as you have the relevant information to guide you in your quest for cooking excellence. Always endeavor to get the best tools so that you can prepare your meals with confidence. Are you ready to light your smoker for a family feast? Ensure that you have an efficient, durable, and trustworthy thermometer!