There’s an old Smokey Mountain tradition: when you build something, you build it to last. Now there’s a smoke cooker worthy of that timeless tradition. You’ll love what it does to fish, meat and game…season after season, year after year.
Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Owner’s Manual, 1981
Barbecue has been enjoyed for many years but was mainly enjoyed at your favorite local BBQ restaurant. Weber designed a “Frankenstein” smoker prototype from existing grills and a few hardware parts. 1981 they released
Weber designed a “Frankenstein” smoker prototype from existing grills and a few hardware parts. In 1981 they released their Weber Smokey Mountain or WSM, for short. Since then the bullet smoker has been a staple for weekend grillers or part of a competition teams’ arsenal.
Q&A What size WSM should I get?
A good rule is to find the size that works and go one bigger. Spending my whole life around barbecues and going to different competitions I never heard anyone say they wish they had a smaller pit.
Should I season my new WSM before my first cook?
If I was in competitions I would consider it, but for a family gathering in the backyard get the charcoal hot and throw some meat on. It would be a waste of time and fuel to season your WSM before first use. Over time the smoker will season and become more stable.
Should I use lump charcoal or briquettes?
For smoking purposes, I always use Kingsford briquettes more consistent size means you can control and anticipate the temperature better. Kettle grills I will use lump charcoal because of the shorter cook times and higher temperatures.
How much charcoal should I use?
Fill it up; whatever charcoal is unburnt can be used for the next cook. You never want to have to add more mid cook if you can help it. Click the link to view our article on the Minion Method.
How do I start the charcoal?
I always use a chimney starter with two Weber cubes.
How much liquid should I put in my water pan?
Fill her up all the way. You never want to run out of liquid or else your water pan will be caked with carbonized grease. You shouldn’t have to ever add liquid to the pan. When not using liquid I heard people who put sand in their pan when smoking poultry I simply use tin foil. Smaller mess and cheaper.
How do I clean my smoker?
At the beginning of my smoking season, I simply inspect the lid and any black flakes I carefully scrape them away. Using a plastic putty knife works best for me. You never want to power clean your smoker it took you many cooks to get it where you are now. And by washing it you will be back at square one taming your beast again.
When you get your new smoker it is always a great idea to start small.
Do a couple of runs with pork butts and chickens to learn how the smoker acts and practice the minion method. Learn how the dampers control the temperature and make some great food for the family and show that it was a great investment. So when it comes time to get that Maverick thermometer it will be effortless.
In conclusion, no one smoked just once and became a master. So keep the charcoal lit and lid down and enjoy that BBQ.