How to Use an Electric Smoker With Wood Chips? Step by Step Guide

Choosing an electric smoker for smoking meat seems the best option, but using an electric smoker with wood chips is tricky. Don’t you feel so? It is! The reason is to maintain a mouthwatering taste and to add a natural smoky flavor. It is essential to have some knowledge about how to use an electric smoker with wood chips. In this post, we intended to solve your queries in a satisfactory way. So, let’s see what the detail says:

Step By Step Guide on How to Use Wood Chips in an Electric Smoker?

Are you excited about smoking meat in your new electric smoker that you have yet received? So, well prepare yourself for smoking the meat adding incredible taste with your right pair of hands. To add this, you need to start your new electric smoker seasoning it. You must season it to remove any manufacturing residue or smell. It is essential to season your unit because not doing this will destroy your dish. Because the dust, chemicals, and other raw material of this kind will spoil your food, making it distasteful and unhealthy to eat. If you don’t know how to do it, stop worrying because you can find the step-by-step information in the below link.

Recommended Reading: How to Season an Electric Smoker

Moreover, once you have season your electric smoker, you are ready to smoke your food using the electric smoker. For smoking meat, how to use an electric smoker using wood chips?

What is an Electric Smoker?

Masterbuilt MB20073519 Bluetooth Digital Electric Smoker

An electric smoker is a neat smoking item that provides you set and forget the experience. It makes you enjoy the hectic free smoking experience that you don’t need to do much more hassle to enjoy mouthwatering food. Using it, you only have to put the marinated meat inside the smoker. Fill the water pan with water and wood chips in a wood chip box. Shut the door, plug the switch in and turn it on; now you are ready to smoke your food.

Because during the smoking process, the meat leaves juices and gets hard. However, water in the pan is added to add moisture to the food during the smoking process. The water adds moisture to the food keeping it soft. Wood chips are added in the wood chips box to add natural smoky flavor to the food to which the barbecue love.

Moreover, electric smoker provides the hassle-free experience of smoking food. Contrary to charcoal smokers, using the electric smoker does not need learning on the user’s part. Because balancing the temperature is easy as the unit has an automatic temperature controller, you don’t need to balance the heat level. It is not perfect to use only for experts and moderate but also for beginners as well. Throughout your smoking meat session, you can enjoy fully gossiping with your friends and family.

Using Wood Chips in an Electric Smoker

Adding Wood Chips in smoker

When they try their hand with their electric smoker, most people wonder how to use an electric smoker with wood chips. The process is simple as you can find the wood chips tray under the heat source. The kinds of wood chips are several as cedar, hickory, maple, plum, etc. You can select any of them according to the type of meat and taste to find the best in taste. To add this, the combination of wood chips or dish you intend to smoke will work best to make your meat full of mouthwatering taste.

Furthermore, your electric smoker may have a built-in wood chips storage. It would help if you bought a pellet tube or smoker box for it. The timing for both pellet tube and smoker box is different from one another. The pellet tube will continue the process for four hours, and the smoker box will continue up to eleven hours smoking. Buying extra will cost you extra, but you will remain free from the hassle of loading wood chips again and again in this situation. Loading the smoker box once you can enjoy ten to eleven hours of smoking meat without any tension of balancing heat level and loading wood chips frequently.

You can add wood chips during the long smoking meat session, but don’t overuse the wood chip to make things messy. The choking and spitting noise hint that you need more wood chips in the wood chips box. To add this, using a wood chip tray, four cups of wood chips are sufficient for four hours. Normally, adding 1-2 cups is best, and if you notice thin smoke add more. If adding the wood chips, you feel a temperature rise, don’t worry, it will get normal. Add as much as you need only. The overloading can result in spoiling the taste of food, making it bitter to eat.

In addition to this, to add more flavor and taste, you can add beer, wine, beer, orange peel, etc., to the water pan. As the water turns in, the moisture during the smoking process mixes these flavors in the food and makes it tasty.

How to Use Wood Chips in an Electric Smoker When it has no Built-in Wood Chip Tray

In addition to this, most smokers are engineered with built-in wood chip boxes, and you easily can use them. By adding wood chips to the box, you can add natural wood flavor to your food. But at the same time, if your unit does not have a built wood chip box, you can also enjoy the natural smoky flavor of food. In this case, you can use the empty tin at the place of the wood chip box.

For this, take a tin can and load it with wood chips. After loading it close the lid of the tin can. Place the can over Lava Rocks. According to the amount required, refill it with wood chips. Take the can and cut the upper side off three quarters and leave the remaining one as attached. Use dry wood chips to fill it. Close the lid down because if it is open, the wood chips in the box will remain in contact with air. In this case, taking high oxygen will burn fast. Using more and more, your food will get bitter.

Afterward, place the tin can over the Lava Rocks. Use a long pair of tongs. With the tongs, grab the can gently. Set the tin can with pair of tongs on the Lava Rock in between the coals. You don’t have to touch the coils with the can. It will become able to heat up enough to start the process of wood chips turning into smoke. As the smoke gets started, it will get added to the food whatever you are cooking.

Moreover, the point to keep in mind is when once the wood chips start turning in smoke, it is too fast a process that if you don’t see, you can think that the experiment did not work. So you need to check it within an hour, and you can refill the wood chips according to the taste. Because to some people overloading wood chips can make them taste bitter, and to some, it may be pleasant. So, keeping the point in mind, add wood chips accordingly.

How Frequent You Need to Add Wood Chips

How often you need to add wood chips in the smoker box mostly depends on several factors. Some electric smokers do not have enough space that they can hold enough wood chips. In this case, you must add frequently. To add this, you can add wood chips according to your taste, to the extent that you like. Some methods of adding wood chips are as below:

Wrapping The Wood Chips in Foil

In this method, take a piece of foil and put a small number of wood chips in the foil. Now fold the foil piece from all four sides. Now with a sharp thing, make four small holes for the best ventilation. These holes will allow the smoke to come out to add natural flavor. Place this envelope containing wood chips on the Lava Rocks. The foil will save the unit from burning immediately. Make four to five mora envelopes according to the type of your dish and use them according to your need. As soon as the foil envelop has created the smoke, remove it to add a new one.

Throwing The Wood Chips on Lava Rocks

To throw wood chips loosely in Lava Rocks, you must soak them because if they are dry, they will burn early. After soaking them up, throw them on the Lava Rocks. They will get hot and start creating smoke. The smoky flavor will get mixed in the food.

Buying A Separate Wood Chips Box

To add wood chips, you can purchase a separate wood chips box. It will demand some expenses on the user’s side. Putting the wood chips in the box, you can place them on the heating element. Char-Broil Cast Iron wood chips box is the best choice if you intend to buy a separate wood chips box.

Is It Better to Soak The Wood Chips?

The users, mostly the new user, get confused about how the wood chips should be soaked or dry? Over time, the user becomes an expert and realizes what is best to use, soaked or dry? It depends upon you as to how you feel the best, but the difference is that if you use dry wood chips, it will get burn fast. But if the wood chips are soaked, they will dry first and then create smoke.

When the soaked wood chips are added to the smoker, it will leave moisture on getting heat. The smoke that you feel when wood chips are not dry is not smoke. Rather it is moisture. When once it gets dried, it will leave smoke that will get mixed in the food.

Additionally, could you not add them after five to six hours if you use the soaked wood chips or not? Because after that, the meat is almost done, so it does not seem useful to add it. Besides, doing more experiments will make you learn more. For the first time when you season a smoker, test your unit by adding wood chips. You will realize the number of wood chips and timing after that; continue adding it after the same period. In addition to this, you need to check the manual for more information.

Recommended reading: How to Use Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

Do You Preheat Electric Smokers With Wood Chips?

Preheating the electric smoker takes 35-40 minutes. For preheating, add a cup of wood chips in the wood chip tray and turn on the unit.

Do you soak wood chips for an electric smoker?

Soaking wood chips keep them safe from burning quickly. Soaked wood will produce smoke slowly. On the other hand, the dry wood will burn quickly, as you can observe. However, it seems appropriate to soak the wood.

How Many Wood Chips Do You Put in an Electric Smoker?

You need to add wood chips almost after the regular intervals. Usually, four cups of wood chips are sufficient for 4-5 hours; after that, you need to add more. Moreover, consult your manual to get a good idea about your electric smoker.


In the end, we hope our post on how to use an electric smoker with wood chips will help you learn to use the electric smoker using wood chips. The several cooking experiments with various dishes will make you learn more. And once you get the combination of the right amount and taste, no one can beat you in producing a mouthwatering taste. Besides keeping the important tips and tricks in mind is the key to success. If you have suggestions don’t hesitate to share them with others.

Stay Blessed!