How to Smoke With Wood in an Oven

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Wood smoke imparts a rich flavor to foods that many people enjoy. Smoking is associated with outdoor grilling, though the flavor of smoke can be created at home in a typical oven. The idea may sound daunting, but in the oven smoking is safe and easy. In fact, the most difficult part of the entire process is choosing the type of wood to use as each wood imparts a different flavor and intensity.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Medium to large bowl
  • Spray bottle
  • Wood chips or shavings
  • Heavy duty aluminum foil
  • Cast-iron pan
  • Fill the bowl half full with water. Add one handful of wood chips. Allow to soak for 15 to 20 minutes. If using wood shavings, mist a handful of shavings with water from a spray bottle until slightly damp.

  • Tear two sections of foil the same length, approximately 24-inches long. Lay one section directly on top of the other, creating a double layer of foil. Fold both layers in the middle. Flatten, then fold over the sides--about one inch--crimping to form an open-top bag.

  • Strain the wood chips. Pour all of the chips or shavings into the opening of the foil bag. Fold and crimp the top of the bag securely. Lay the bag flat and use a fork, toothpick, or knife tip to make small vent holes on the top side of the packet.

  • Place one oven rack on the lowest bracket. Move the second rack to the middle bracket. Put the foil packet into the cast iron pan and position in the center of the rack. Heat the oven to 500 degrees F. Check for smoke after 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 to 375 degrees F if smoke is present.

  • Add the meat to be smoked to the oven, placing on the middle rack. Use a pan that has a roasting rack, if possible, to allow the fat to collect in the bottom of the pan, away from the meat. Roast according to your recipe.

Tips & Warnings

  • Turn your ventilation hood fan on to the high setting. Smoke will leak from the oven. If you do not have a range hood with a fan, open a window and use a fan as an exhaust.
  • Brine your meat with one half cup of salt, one half cup of sugar, and two gallons of water for a few hours before smoke-roasting for a unique flavor.
  • Avoid placing the foil packet on the floor of your oven. This is a fire hazard.
  • Do not leave the oven on 500 degrees F with the roast inside. Fat drippings can splatter and cause a fire.

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