Reverse flow offset smokers are usually used for hosting large events, family functions, and tailgating parties. These smokers feature an extraordinarily large cooking surface that allows you to cook a lot of food at one time.
In the market, you will come across a large variety of offset smokers. They include vertical offset smokers, horizontal offset smokers, reverse flow offset smokers, drum smokers, and side box smokers. The one we will be looking at today is the reverse flow offset smoker.
Reverse flow smokers are a type of offset smoker that includes an extra metal plate. It protects the meat from extreme heat and directs the smoke under and back over the food before releasing it via the chimney. Few reasons why you might prefer a reverse flow offset smoker over other types of smokers include:
- Even distribution of smoke to thoroughly give the meat a smoky flavor.
- Even distribution of heat throughout the cooking process to prevent you from turning the meat while it cooks.
- Add fuel to the fire without the temperature increasing suddenly.
- Quicker return to normal cooking temperature after opening the door of the cooking chamber.
- Improved moisture and flavor due to the fat rendering out of the meat.
- Sear on the griddle pan and filter it via the cooking chamber.
- Eliminate the need for a different grease and water tray.
When it comes to downsides of buying a reverse flow offset smoker, know that there really isn’t any. It makes smoking easier and even an inexperienced cook can barbecue a delicious meal. However, you will find disadvantages with different makes and models.
Looking at both the pros and cons of the best reverse offset smokers can help you to decide which one to bring home. We have reviewed five and created a buyer’s guide to help you buy the best one.
Our winner after 35+ hours of research
We want to save you the trouble of going through the entire list of reverse flow offset smokers to give you our top pick — the Oklahoma Joe's Longhorn Reverse Flow Smoker. If you want to go through the entire list of reverse flow offset smokers, you are more than welcome to check it out.
The OJ Longhorn offset smoker, known for its versatile and enhanced performance, is the perfect cooking companion. Featuring wide and large cooking surface areas and equipped with durable, heavy-duty gauge stainless steel coated with porcelain enamel makes the OJ Longhorn offset smoker an excellent choice for whipping delicious food quickly.
Some standout features of this reverse flow offset smoker include the ability to cook 30 hamburger patties, create flawless grill marks, four baffles to direct heat to the food to ensure it cooks evenly, and four adjustable grill grates for positioning food accurately. This long-lasting reverse flow offset smoker made from premium quality material can improve your cooking skills, making the food you grill on it taste even more delicious.
Best Reverse Flow Offset Smoker - Comparison Table
Best Reverse Flow Offset Smoker - Our Reviews
When you are searching for a reverse flow offset smoker for grilling, you want one that offers you a number of useful features to make the entire cooking process seamless.
If so, you will find what you are looking for in the OJ Longhorn Reverse Flow Smoker. What is so different about this smoker? It features a smokestack location to allow you to change between traditional offset smoking and reverse flow smoking.
It only gets better from there. It also has four removable baffles for heating and smoking food evenly in the cooking chamber. Made from heavy-gauge and high-temperature steel with a big charcoal basket, the smoker is a great choice for people who need a long-lasting and convenient solution for grilling.
Another benefit of having a big charcoal basket is that it offers an efficient burn, improved tending, and faster clean up. Making clean-up even easier is the firebox door. The firebox doubles as a warming area. The smoker gives you 619 square inches of grilling space with a 281-square inch of additional grilling space.
The handles on the smoker are cool to the touch. You can monitor the temperature using its temperature gauge. Use its large wheels to move it around to different areas. Use the bottom shelf to store your cooking utensils and any other grilling supplies and accessories.
Introducing one of the best reverse flow offset smokers for a family four, the Char-Griller 1224 Offset Smoker. This reverse flow offset smoker will meet all your demands of cooking up a perfectly mouthwatering meal for your family and friends.
This smoker will be an essential part of your grilling parties for several years, thanks to its heavy-gauge, durable, and sturdy powder-coated steel. You get 830 square inches of grilling space, allowing you to cook large quantities of food with ease.
The manufacturers used non-stick cast iron to prevent wrapping. The smoker features a 250-square inch firebox, which you can use for either smoking or charcoal cooking. You can adjust the heat using adjustable dampers and fire grate. The three heat settings include hot, medium, and warm. You can see the heat gauge on the hood to determine the temperature.
When you are done cooking, remove the ash pan and dump its contents in the trash. It is as simple as that! You can also add coals to the smoker without removing the entire grill, thus increasing the convenience of using the smoker to grill meat. For easy transportation, you can move the grill from one location to another. It also features a storage rack.
If you want your meat to smoke to perfection, the Char-Broil American Gourmet will do the job. The durable and reliable reverse flow offset smoker is made from heavy-duty, all-black steel with handles that cool to the touch and grates coated with porcelain.
You receive a total of 290 square inches of cooking space. Even though that is less than the grilling space than what other reverse flow offset smokers on this list offer, it is still plenty, given you can grill 18 burger patties on it. The smoker features drawers — a steel box and porcelain-coated enamel pan — which make wood chips and water within easy reach of you.
The steel construction features sturdy legs to keep it stable on whatever surface you place it on as well as wheels for easy transportation. With the welded cooking chamber preventing the smoke from escaping, you can cook smoky flavored meat each time.
Its adjustable heat controls and chimney vent at the top allows you to control the temperature. You can decide on the level of heat you want to cook the meat. You can adjust the heat of the steel fire grate and remove ash using the adjustable damper. This grill is the perfect combination of an offset reverse smoker, charcoal grill, and barbecue.
Oklahoma Joe is on a roll with their second reverse flow smoker, making it to our top five list of the best reverse flow offset smokers. The OJ Highland Reverse Flow Smoker offers you a total of 900 square inches of cooking space.
That is 619 square inches of space in the main chamber and 281 square inches of space in the firebox chamber.
The reverse flow smoker has four baffles to direct smoke and heat through the primary chamber to cook the meat evenly. If you want, you can remove the baffles. You also receive optional smokestack areas, thus allowing you to customize it as you please.
The firebox chamber has a big stainless steel fuel basket with a door for easy cleaning. The reverse flow smoker will last you several years due to its heavy-gauge and durable steel construction coated with porcelain to ensure it does not fade.
The reverse flow smoker has more than damper for quick heating and easy smoke control. The adjustable temperature controls allow you to adjust the temperature as needed. You can manage the fuel using the charcoal basket. The wheels at the bottom of the reverse flow offset smoker allow you to move it around from one place to another without trouble.
Offering you a total of 800 square inches of cooking space — 438 square inches in the primary chamber and 179 square inches in the chrome warming rack — you can prepare a lot of food at one time.
If you want even more space, you will be delighted to know that this offset smoker offers an additional 183 square inches of grilling space.
The manufacturer has coated the steel cooking grates with porcelain. The offset smoker is great for smoking and heating. You can add charcoal through the side door with the air vent allowing increased air flow. The smoker has a durable lid with a thermometer for adjusting the heat level.
The cool to touch handles combined with the wheels allow you to move the offset smoker from one area to another area with ease. You can adjust the damper for airflow. The charcoal pan can hold up to five pounds of charcoal at one time. You can lift the handle to adjust the height of the charcoal pan for improved heating.
On the front table and bottom shelf, you will find steel mesh that offers ample work and storage space. Once you are done cooking, you will have no trouble cleaning it. They have also added heat-resistant black paint to ensure no paint peels off. If you want an additional cooking area, use the swingaway warming rack. You can keep your grilling items in the two storage racks, one on the front and one underneath the offset smoker.
Best Reverse Flow Offset Smoker - Buyers Guide
People invest in a reverse flow offset smoker because they are passionate about grilling. They love to host parties and wear their chef hat and apron as they prepare a delicious and mouthwatering meal for their friends and family.
The last thing you want to do is to get disappointed by buying a reverse flow offset smoker that does not smoke and grill the meat as you envisioned. You do not want a badly cooked meal, especially if you are known for your grilling skills among close friends and family.
To save yourself from making a mistake, you need to consider several different factors. In our buyer’s guide, we have listed factors that you must consider when searching for, narrowing down, and comparing different reverse flow offset smokers.
Should You Invest in It?
Reverse flow offset smokers are not exactly budget-friendly, which is why you need to ensure if it is worth the money.
If grilling is something you enjoy, invest in a durable and long-lasting reverse flow offset smoker, which will be expensive but the number of years it will last, including the delicious meals you will cook on it, will be worth the investment. Going with a cheaper option means routine maintenance, thus, the money you saved in buying the smoker will go towards fixing it. In short, choose a smoker that is within your budget and from a well-recognized brand.
Should You Choose Vertical or Barrel Offset Smokers?
You can choose between a vertical or barrel offset smoker, but which one is better? The difference between the two is how the cooking area is set up. Both are cylindrical in shape and perform well. The main difference is that the vertical smoker offers more cooking space, allowing you to cook several items at the same time.
Vertical smokers also take up less space. If there is no need for you to cook up a lot of food at one time, choose a barrel smoker. If a barrel offset smoker uses a reverse flow cooking method, it increases their cooking efficiency.
How Much Cooking Space Does It Offer?
For people who host large parties with a lot of guests, an offset smoker offering them ample cooking space will be a necessity. If you are hosting an intimate gathering with a few people, you can choose an offset smoker that does not offer a lot of cooking space.
The downside of having a lot of additional cooking space is that it will require increased maintenance and the price will be higher. You will still need to clean your offset smoker even if you do not use all the racks in it.
When you are cooking, the racks that are not in use will still be exposed to juices, smoke, and heat. If you need a compact style offset smoker to grill small amounts of meat, look for a small smoker. A small offset smoker will heat up quicker than a large smoker.
What is the Capacity of the Hopper?
The capacity of the hopper determines the amount of fuel you can add to it at one time. Regardless of the size of the hopper you decide to choose, you can always add more fuel to it during the cooking process without changing the heat inside the offset smoker.
If you go with a large hopper, you do not have to worry about adding fuel in between cooking. A large hopper works in your favor because it makes it easier to operate the smoker at the correct temperature.
The downside of a large hopper is that it takes up a lot of room and is a little difficult to clean. A small hopper is easier to clean because it does not have enough space for ashes to collect.
What is the Temperature Range?
Since you will be smoking food, you need to control the temperature. Using excessive heat can dry out the meat, whereas using less heat can increase the cooking time. When you are looking for a reverse flow offset smoker, consider one with a wide temperature range because that allows you to cook several different types of food at various temperatures.
What Fuel Source Does the Offset Smoker Use?
You need to select a fuel source to use with the reverse flow offset smoker. You get two options. You can either use wood chips or charcoal. Both fuel sources will cook your food efficiently with the difference being that both will provide different flavors.
If you ask us, we would recommend you choose charcoal because it is easier to heat the offset smoker up and maintain the temperature that you need to grill your food. If you go with wood, it will enhance the taste of your food, but it will be harder for you to set the right temperature needed to cook your meat. With practice grilling with wood chips, you will be able to do it without trouble.
What Are the Dimensions and Weight of the Offset Smoker?
Since it is important to invest in a premium quality offset smoker, the smoker you choose will have at least 1/4-inch-thick steel construction body. Anything less than that will cause it to leak and wrap when you cook at high temperatures.
The thick steel construction will increase the weight of the offset smoker though. Make sure the place you decide to put your offset smoker can support the weight. Since it will have wheels, it will not be that difficult to move to other places. We advise you to select the spot you want to place your smoker beforehand because you do not want to buy it and then later find out that it does not fit there.
If you find that space stops you adding a smoker to your outdoor cooking range then maybe consider a new smoker grill combo. These make a great alternative if space is tight.
Is the Smoker Multifunctional?
Some offset smokers give you the option of indirect and direct cooking to smoke meat. If you cook fish and cured meats, consider getting a multifunctional smoker.
What Additional Features Should the Offset Smoker Have?
The most important feature your offset smoker needs to have is an accurate thermometer because you will be grilling at lower temperatures for several hours. Your smoker should also provide you with the ease to adjust the temperature, so you can grill the meat to perfection every time without doing a lot of guessing.
Lastly, you want a smoker that you can easily and quickly clean after use. Smokers with grates coated with porcelain are easy to clean than basic metal grates.