Electric smoker vs propane smoker Which One is Better for You?

Are you trying to get the best smoker that can give you better results with exceptional performance? Probably no one over this planet doesn’t love to fill his belly with smoked food. For smoking food, wood smokers and charcoal smokers are the traditional ways to smoke food. However, both propane smokers and electric smokers come with advanced technology leaving the user in troubled water as to which one to buy? Both electric smoker and propane smoker have their features, merits, and demerits. The article below, “electric smoker vs propane smoker- which one to buy,” will help you get the best one according to your need.

A Step-Step comparison of the electric smoker and propane smoker

You can make the best decision by comparing and contrasting the features of the electric smoker and propane smoker with one another. Let’s have a quick overview of both of these units.

What is an electric smoker?

As the name of the electric smoker suggests that it takes electricity to work. In other words, in terms of fuel, it takes electricity. Electric smokers provide the users set and forget the experience of smoking food. Simply it is an exceptional device wherein you can put the food items for smoking inside, close the door and plug the switch in. As soon as you do this, you are ready to go to get the smoked food.

Moreover, structurally, at the bottom of the unit, the heating element is fixed. Above the electric stuff, there is the water pan. The purpose of the water pan is to moisture the food during the smoking process. The moisture keeps the food tender and soft to eat. Going deep, we can say that the water pan keeps you from opening the unit’s door and again adding water to the food.

Besides, the wood chip pan over the electric element, which contains the wood chip inside it. The basic purpose is to create the smoke when it gets heated and spread through the food for smoky flavor.

Furthermore, being electric smokers, they are pretty easy to operate. Therefore, electric smokers provide the best experience to beginners. Taking electricity, electric smokers maintain temperature automatically.

What is Propane Smoker?

Propane smokers are the best reliable, incredibly efficient, and available in various types to fit your smoking preferences best. In addition, they enable you to spend the beautiful day not only in the backyard of your house but also on a camp trip.

To add this, if you search for a convenient, user-friendly, and reliable device, we are sure the propane smokers come in this list.

In addition to this, as a fuel source, mostly propane smokers take natural gas or propane tanks. Therefore, using propane smokers, the user can achieve high temperatures as well. Moreover, these smokers can maintain temperature fast.

Furthermore, there is a gas burner at the bottom of the unit with a shelf for adding wood chips. The wood chips during the smoking process add natural smoky flavor to the food. Propane smokers are mostly used in commercial restaurants. Whatever you intend to purchase our main concern is to present the features and advantages and disadvantages of both.

The Complete Overview of electric smokers and propane smokers:

The detail of the features will give you a good idea as to which one to buy?


Focusing upon the portability factor of the units, you can easily jump to a conclusion.

Moreover, consider the fact of how often you take your unit outside for trip purposes. How often you go outdoor for recreation purposes. Outdoor activities are essential for the healthy survival of human beings.

Furthermore, smoking is the part and parcel factor of outdoor activities. For this, you need to take your smoker with you.

Fu4thermore, in this regard, you need to select the unit definitely which is portable.

To add this talking about the unit’s portability, it is clear that electric smoker takes electricity as the power source to work, whereas, propane smoker takes gas to run.

Concerning the electric smoker, it does not seem best to take outside trips as a propane smoker. As an electric smoker takes electricity, you will be caught in the problem of arranging electricity. To manage electricity, you need to arrange the power generator, which again will be a problem.

Whereas propane smoker does not need separate power generator so it is easily portable and you can take it outside for outdoor parties.

So, regarding portability, a propane smoker suits the best for the user as compared to an electric smoker.

Easy To Use

Electric smokers are highly remarkable due to the factor that they are easy to use. They prove to be the best smokers for beginners. They are user-friendly, and even the new user can do a great experience using the electric smoker.

Moreover, they give a set and forget the experience. The only thing is you need to put the food over the cooking chamber, stuff the wood chips for natural smokey flavor, and check the water pan for water. Set the temperature and close the door. After that, you are plugging the switch in. Sitting over your couch, you can enjoy your time despite struggling to maintain the temperature.

In short, an electric smoker is a user-friendly unit.

Besides, propane smoker, as compared to electric smoker needs some of your efforts., It needs some skills on the part of the user. You can practice your hands easily with this unit if you are aware of using a propane stove.

However, the balanced temperature depends upon the gas that you exit. So, if you are used to of gas burner, nothing is difficult here.

Above all, everything is easy, and it needs fewer efforts than the charcoal smoker to balance the temperature.

So, comparatively, an electric smoker is the most user-friendly unit as compared to a propane smoker.

Natural Flavor

Natural flavor or taste is the main element of food smoking that barbecue lovers love to enjoy. The natural flavor is the only thing that attracts the attention of food lovers.

So, in terms of flavor, an electric smoker does not seem as reliable as that propane smoker. Both of them do not need natural fire to smoke food. Both use wood chips tray inside that during the smoking process add smoke in the food.

But from a manufacturing point of view, the propane smoker adds natural flavor to that of the electric smoker. As a result, an electric smoker remains to fail to produce the original taste compared to that of a propane smoker.

The taste of food that is smoked in a propane smoker closely resembles that of the charcoal smoker. But it does not require a lot of your efforts as compared to the charcoal smoker.

Fuel Cost

Additionally, the fuel cost is of great importance. The user can’t neglect it. The common factor among most human beings is we compare things with one another in terms of expenses.

Similarly, before buying the smokers, we will compare the fuel cost with one another.

Talking about electric smokers, it takes electricity to smoke food. It is a fact, and you are aware that electricity cost is high compared to that of others.  If you consider the purchasing price of an electric smoker, it may be low, but the running cost of the unit is high. You will need to pay for the electric bill as well.

Moreover, propane smokers are cheaper to purchase, but they take running costs as high. They need propane tanks to run, which is costly for the user. So, you need to plan your smoking session to maintain the fuel cost as well.

Furthermore, both of these units take a high cost to run, but if you schedule your meat smoking session, then using a propane smoker takes the credit in my point of view.

Because you buy it for less money and several sessions of smoking meat can be cost-effective collectively.

Weather Condition

The outside weather condition is the most important element you need to consider when buying an offset smoker.

For instance, if you are outside and stricken in stormy or rainy weather, what would be the better option for you?

According to our experts and reviews of the customers, Propane smokers seem perfect in this respect. They take gas to work, so it is [pretty safe to use them.

Moreover, in electric smokers, it is not safe to use the unit when this is rain or a storm outside. It is not safe to use it in an open place or backyard when there is rain outside. If you have a safe place like a decor patio, you can practice your hands.

So, in terms of tough weather conditions like rain, storm, or snow, if you are outside the house or in the backyard, then propane smokers seem useful. However, using an electric smoker in case of rain would not be safe.

Insulated Body

The manufacturing strength of the unit is an essential issue for the user.

To add this, if the body is not well insulated, the unit cannot maintain temperature for a long time. The heavy-duty unit can balance the temperature for a long time and capable of showing satisfactory results.

In addition to this, the electric smoker has a well-insulated body compared to the propane smokers. Therefore, they can maintain the temperature for a long time.

Moreover, due to their heavy-duty body, they can maintain temperature for a long time.

The propane smokers are not well insulated. Therefore, they can not balance the heat level for a long time. As a result, the user needs to struggle to maintain the temperature.

Cleaning The Unit

The cleanliness of the unit is the most important issue that the user must keep in mind before buying the unit.

However, concerning electric smokers and propane smokers, electric smokers, take electricity to work. It does not need fuel to smoke food. The only thing is it contains the wood chips tray. You need to stuff the wood inside to add a smokey flavor to the food.

In addition to this, only the wood chip tray is the portion that needs your proper cleanliness. Otherwise, the unit remains clean, free of outside dust because you put it in kitchens or somewhere like that. Therefore, it does not get dirty. So, the cleanliness of the unit is pretty easy.

In addition to this, propane smokers, like electric smokers, are pretty easy to clean. Only wood chip tray needs cleanliness except that everything is all alright. It does not take much of your time to keep it clean.

So, both of these units, in terms of cleanliness, are pretty easy to keep clean.

Smoking On Low Heat

Barbecue lovers are well aware of the word “cold smoking.” It is obvious from the name that cold smoking means smoking food using low heat levels.

So, in respect of cold smoking electric smoker seems to take the credit. As it works using electricity. The user does not need to maintain the temperature. An electric smoker can maintain the heat level automatically. It has the functioning, which saves the user from the trouble of balancing the heat level.

On the other hand, propane smoker works taking gas. It smokes food over high temperatures. So the user has to do hard work to maintain temperature using low heat levels. Whereas electric smoker automatically is capable of doing that.

Sturdy Construction

The user always intends to buy things that are sturdy and can work for a long time.

Moreover, concerning the construction, electric smokers are sturdy and well insulated for maintaining the heat level. They are made of sturdy material and can serve you for many years to come.

In addition to this, propane smokers are not as sturdy as electric smokers. That is the reason they are not much expensive comparatively. However, they are not sturdy enough to maintain the temperature for a long time.

Head-to-Head Comparison of Electric smoker vs. Propane Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20071117 Digital Electric Smoker

Dyna Glo DGY 784BDP 36” Vertical LP Gas Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20071117 Digital Electric Smoker
Dyna Glo DGY 784BDP 36” Vertical LP Gas Smoker
Cooking SpaceIt has enough space that you can smoke 2
Turkeys, 4 Pork Butts, four racks of ribs,
and six chickens.
784 square inches
Fuel TypeElectricityLPGas
LevelEven a beginner can use easily.Beginner, intermediate and expert
Maximum Temperature275-degree FCan get high temperature sufficient for grilling even

Bradley Smoker BS 611 Electric Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20050716 MPS 330 g Propane Smoker

Cooking Capacity19 inchFour Chrome Coated Smoking Racks
Fuel TypeElectricLPGAS
Level of useBeginner, Intermediate,
and expert
Beginner, intermediate and expert
InteriorStainless steel

High-End Electric Smoker

Smokin -It Model #2 Electric Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20051316 Propane Smoker

Cooking Capacity4 Adjustable cooking racks961 square Inches
Fuel TypeElectricLP Gas
LevelIntermediate and expert user
can use it easily
Intermediate, Expert User
Cooking Grates4 cooking grates, stainless steel4 Chrome Coated Cooking Grates

Final Verdict

After probing into the details of the comparison “Electric smoker vs propane smoker,” it clarifies that no one lacks qualities with the others. Instead, both have their pros and cons, merits and demerits.

But our experts believe that if you love the natural flavor of smoked meat, then go for propane because it gives a close taste to a charcoal smoker.

In addition to this, an electric smoker makes the user set and forget. Using it totally, you don’t need to get worried about balancing the temperature. Instead, you can control the unit sitting on your couch.

Moreover, one of the most important facts is that electric smokers are more expensive to buy than propane smokers. So, the buying cost of the electric smoker is high due to use of advanced technology.

Furthermore, you can make purchasing decision according to your needs. We know that your time is precious, but please let us know through the comments below about your purchase.

So, get the best one! and Enjoy Smoking!