How to Smoke with a Gas Smoker

Things You'll Need

  • Gas smoker

  • Wood chips

  • Water

  • Seasonings

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Gas smokers work like water smokers and other types of smokers, by slow-cooking food with smoke and steam. Wood chips, seasonings and spices used in the smoker impart flavor deep into the meat. Most gas smokers have a propane tank that connects to a hose and sends gas to the burners. Some even give chefs a chance to grill or steam food, in addition to smoking. Smokers slow-cook the meat, making it more tender and flavorful.

Step 1

Take off the lid of the dome and the body of the smoker, leaving behind only the base pan. Find the lava rocks under the smoker and layer your wood chips on top of the rocks. Depending on your model, a separate pan may hold the wood chips and not the lava rocks.

Step 2

Find the water pan and pour water directly into the pan. Use enough water that it almost reaches the rim but doesn't overflow. For more flavor, add marinade instead of water. To allow the natural flavor of the meat to shine through, leave the water as is. If using marinade, reserve a small amount to add back into the smoker later. You also can sprinkle seasonings such as garlic or rosemary into the water.

Step 3

Turn the burner to the low setting and turn it on. Set the smoker body back onto the smoker. Set the cooking grill on top of the water pan, using the brackets there. Check that the grill rack is securely in place before continuing.

Step 4

Set the food directly on the grill rack, leaving at least one inch between each piece of food. If you put the food too close together, it won't cook evenly. Check the food beforehand to ensure you have enough space to cook all of it at the same time.

Step 5

Check your water levels every two hours, adding more as needed. If you're using a marinade, use some of the extra that you reserved earlier. Remove the food when fully cooked, turn the smoker off and clean the smoker once it cools completely.


Only use the gas smoker on a sturdy table or another location where it won’t fall or tip over.

Be careful around the smoker and keep children away from it while it is in use. It will become very hot and can burn them (or you).