Masterbuilt Electric/Digital Smokers - Your Choice
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I honestly can’t decide which is ‘better’ even after looking at reviews on Amazon. Though the one without the accessories has thousands of reviews vs 20 some for the other.
Either the smoker is too hot or your digits are too close to the heat.
I have the 40" digital version of this and have been making some yummy ribs, pork shoulders, and briskets. The turkey is going in Thursday.
Mine came with a terribly small wood tray requiring new chips be added about every 20-30 minutes. It also doesn’t generate much (if any) smoke when I run it under 225°. I bought the cold smoke attachment for under $60 via the mothership and it was a fantastic addition. It holds hours worth of chips and produces plenty of smoke.
There are apparently newer versions than what I got that have modified smoke trays that hold double the chips, so that may negate some of the need for the external smoke attachment.
Also, about nine months after I bought it, the meat probe and control panel both went south. A call to masterbuilt had replacement parts shipped for free.
If this digital unit comes with a remote, that would be my recommendation. I sit upstairs in my office working and keep an eye on the meat probe reading, occasionally make adjustments, and know when to pull the meat out without having to stop what I’m doing…
Great advice for cooking, male strippers and birth control!
I bought the 20072514R last spring. The unit lasted until the fall when it started to turn itself off randomly. There is nothing worse than filling up a smoker full of meat, turning it on, and then realizing a few hours later that it’s been off for an unknown amount of time. After researching it, other people were having the same problem. I wouldn’t buy another masterbuilt smoker again. I especially wouldn’t buy a refurbished one.
I live in a cold climate. Will these work when the temperature is 10 degrees?
I eyeballed one of these for a few years every time I walked into SamsClub.
I ended up getting an upright gas smoker, and replaced it years later with a larger upright gas smoker.
The reasoning I went with gas was because I had planned to take it with me places, or wanted to smoke where I may not have had power. It’s much more portable in that aspect than electric and being tied to needing power.
The real reason why I would get one of these is to smoke sausages at low temperatures.
OK so which one is better?
I recently purchased the digital one. The manual states that under 50°F additional time may be required. So at 10° it may be pushing the limits on holding temp!
I have one that looks like the one on the right with the controls in the pod on top. Wife and kids got it for me for father’s day. We absolutely LOVE it. The electric smokers are so much easier as they are more consistent with temperature using the electric element. I’ve started boston butts in the evening, throwing in wood chips for the first couple hours, get the meat to about 160, wrap in foil or cover in a foil pan, set temp to about 225 and go to bed. Get up in the morning and that thing is done (~195-200 internal). Pull it out, place in 9x13 glass pan and place in cooler to rest for a few hours. take it out around lunch and pull it apart. the bone just slides out. I have gotten praise for this pulled pork over and over.
Also check out smokingmeatforums.com. Lots of tips, tricks, recipes, and ideas.
I looked to purchase this last year but opted for this instead - Masterbuilt 20051311 GS30D 2-Door Propane Smoker
Still a Masterbuilt Smoker, but the primary heat source is propane instead. It does have some drawbacks (it is hard to keep at 225) and with any thermometer built on the unit, they are not very accurate. For temperature I use a Maverick, that has two probes, one for meat and one for internal cooking temperature.
It isn’t as large as the 40, but I have been able to do up to 5 racks of ribs, or two large pork butts.
I like the propane to help on rainy, windy or cold days. 225 is a good temp for beef and pork, but you want to cook poultry at 250-275.
Last, when cooking, alot of ribs, butts, chickens, or fatty meat, these things get dirty and I really like being able to spray degreaser and pressure washing the inside. I think cleanup would be more difficult in an electric unit.
Pro’s- Temperature regulation is key and may be alot easier.
Just my thoughts
In the world of meat smoking the one with the controls on the back is known as the MES40. I have had mine now for quite awhile and really enjoy it. The smoke box is small on it, so if you intend to use it out of the box prepare to add chips every 45 minutes to an hour. Contrary to popular belief the unit does not need to have smoke the whole time in use. You can actually over smoke your meat. Another thing to bring up is the water pan. If you dont keep water in the water pan you will not get good smoke. Lastly Amaze-n-products. Buy the 5X8, get a mail box and some ductwork. A little handy work will give you a smoke box that will produce smoke an easy 6-8 hrs and the amazing MES40 will keep a constant temp. Come back to great smoked meat for dinner without having to watch it like a hawk!
I have one of these and am surprised how much I use it. Beef, pork, ham, turkey, chicken, cheese, vegetables, it works well. Yes, I add chips every 30 minutes or so for the first couple hours, but I am perfectly happy with that. The water pan inside the smoker keeps the meat moist, you can hold temp for a long time without drying things out. I like the electric because it is quicker to come to temp and easier to maintain temp than a charcoal/wood smoker. I just dont have the time to tend to one that way. If mine wasnt running great, I would grab one.
I am in Northern Ohio and have used this in fairly cold temps. The box is insulated, but Im not confident that it will do a good job in 10 Degree weather.
Oh and good info here: