In recent years, much effort has been expended to create, design, and achieve a form factor for smokers that would improve its portability and cost-effectiveness. If you’re in the market for such a smoker, then read on.
Because charcoal, gas, and offset smokers are hard to shrink because of the fuel source and elements they need to operate, the portability efforts have been focused on electric smokers.
For as long as you have a power source, an electric smoker will run. If you combine this convenience with a small form factor, then you’re looking at a portable electric smoker that can give you smoked food no matter where you are.
In this article, we’re going to focus on these types of smokers. By the end, we’re hoping you’ll have the information you need to start smoking meat wherever you want.
Why Small Electric Smoker?
There are many reasons why you might want to go to a small electric smoker. For one, if you’re looking for an electric smoker for recreational purposes and if you want to cook smoked meat for a small group, then a portable electric smoker will give you more versatility.
Its small size means that you will only need to make sure that you have a power source wherever you go. You’d have no problem bringing it on a camping trip. Moreover, a mini electric smoker appeals to anyone who may want to cut down on costs.
The small form means it doesn’t use as much electricity and wood chips. You’d be saving a lot of money, especially if you don’t need to cook for a large group of people.
Another reason why you might want to go for a small electric smoker is the fact that it is the epitome of a smoker that is easy to use.
It achieves this convenience through the basic electric smoker features it includes, even with such a small footprint. Depending on the smoker, this may consist of an analog temperature control or even a digital control board.
If you’re convinced about the benefits of a small electric smoker, then you don’t have to worry. The next section will give you a list of the best small electric smoker options you can get.
Top Recommendations for Small Electric Smokers
So now you should wondering what is the best small electric smoker? This is the question that we’ve strived to answer for you.
To achieve this goal, we’ve reviewed just about every portable electric smoker you can find. With our experience and thoughts on each, we’ve created a list of the top 7 recommended small electric smokers:
|Product Name||Dimension (inch.)||Wattage|
|Smoke Hollow 26142E 26-Inch Electric Smoker||7.36 x 19.17 x 35.09||1,500|
|Char-Broil Analog Electric Smoker||15 x 20.7 x 33.5||1,000|
|Smokin’-It Model Compact Electric Smoker||12.5 x 17.25 x 13.5||400|
|Bradley Smoker BTDS76P 990216||14 x 14 x 31||500|
|LANDMANN MCO 32954 Landmann Smoky Mountain||26.7 x 16.6 x 13.2||1,500|
|Smokehouse Products Little Chief Front Load Smoker||11.5 x 11.5 x 24.5||250|
|Masterbuilt MB20073716 Patio-2-Portable Electric Smoker||15.94 x 23.62 x 23.31||1,400|
1. Smoke Hollow 26142E 26-Inch Electric Smoker
The first small electric smoker that tops our list is Smoke Hollow’s 26-inch electric smoker.
First, let’s talk about its build quality. The cabinet features a welded steel construction, and the cooking grates offer chrome plating. Meanwhile, the door handle is made of a cool touch spring wire material.
Combined, these materials and positive Smoke Hollow electric smoker reviews prove that this electric smoker is only durable but also capable of containing and maintaining the heat inside the cabinet.
With 1.3 cubic feet or 171 square inches of cooking space, this smoker is perfect for small cooking.
Smoke Hollow includes a water pan and wood chip tray in the package.
Where this smoker falls short is the legs. Despite its portable size and weight, this analog smoker doesn’t have wheels.
Heat retention may also be compromised as there is no side door access for easy wood chips loading.
This smoker is perfect for those who’d like a smoker that has a high wattage capability and exceptional build quality. If you don’t mind the analog temperature controls and the small cooking space, then this tiny electric smoker is our top pick of the bunch.
- Weight and dimensions are perfect for portable smoking
- Impressive build quality
- One of the two smokers with the highest wattage, which means it is capable of high-temperature smoking
- Included water pan and wood chips tray
- Great value for money
- No wheels
- Analog adjustable temperature control can require a bit of getting used to
- Small cooking space
2. Char-Broil Analog Electric Smoker
The top 2 best small electric smoker that we recommend is the Char-Broil Analog electric smoker.
This model features 544 square inches of cooking space and three chrome-plated smoking racks. It’s well-suited for anyone who might want to smoke meat for a medium crowd, but it will require batch cooking for a larger audience.
The reason why it made it into our top 2 is its build quality, considering it’s the best electric smoker under $200 in this list.
Char-Broil’s compact electric smoker is built with double-wall insulation in mind and dual exhaust ports for the perfect smoking experience.
Other features that we appreciated with this smoker are the front load water tray, grease cup, and wood chip tray.
This smoker is perfect for anyone who’s looking for a compact electric smoker that does not break the bank but offers superb built quality, excellent insulation, and adequate cooking space.
- Build quality is superb value for money considering its less than $200 price
- Adequate cooking space and versatile cooking racks
- Inexpensive smoker
- Front-load water tray, grease cup, and wood chip tray
- Surprisingly accurate temperature gauge
- Portable thanks to the side handles
- Paint coating suffers in high heat smoking even during the break-in period
- No wheels that would have made transport easier
3. Smokin’-It Model #2 Compact Electric Smoker
The Smokin’-It Model #1 Electric Smoker is a unit that we’ve decided to include in the list despite its $300 to $350 price range.
Our main reason for its inclusion is its great quality. This smoker features a build quality that beats our Smoke Hollow top pick.
With 18 gauge, 201 stainless steel build all around, Smokin’-It’s contribution to our list is not only good quality but also restaurant-certified.
Add in the 3-inch diameter rubber caster and the three removable shelves, and you’ve got an excellent option for a portable smoker.
Armed with a 400-watt heating element and a cooking space that can handle up to 22 pounds of meat, this smoker is also more than capable of fulfilling the needs of recreational low and slow smoker.
Like all other smokers, Smokin-It’s electric smoker isn’t perfect. It doesn’t have a temperature gauge on top, and the heating element may not be for everyone.
This smoker is the best option if you don’t mind paying a little more for top-notch build quality and if you’re someone who prefers low and slow cooking as well as cold smoking meat.
- Top-notch, NSF certified, restaurant-quality build and construction
- Three cooking racks make up for the small space as it provides some flexibility in what can be in it
- Easy bottom and external access to smokebox and drip pan
- 3-year warranty on defects
- Side handles increase portability
- Rheostat for temperature control within 100 degrees Fahrenheit to 250 degrees Fahrenheit
- Price is above the $200 range
- No temperature gauge but is equipped with an LED indicator light
- Relatively low wattage at 400
4. Bradley Smoker BTDS76P 990216
Another portable electric smoker that made it into our overall list is the well-known Bradley Smoker.
Like the Smokin’-It Model #1, this smoker is beyond the $200 price point. However, there are features that you might want to consider before you scrap off this $350 model.
One of the features that might take you back and stop you in your tracks is the internal cooking volume of 2,288 square inches. That’s impressive considering its 15W by 11.5D by 25.5H internal dimensions.
It is also equipped with four cooking racks, a 500-watt cooking element, and a 125-watt smoking element.
This smoker can reach temperatures of up to 280 degrees Fahrenheit.
Another unique feature that sets it apart from the others on our list is the digital controls for smoke, temperature, and cooking time. This means that Bradley Smoker’s model is more technologically-advanced than the others on this list.
- Enormous internal cooking space that is enough to smoke meat for a sizable crowd
- Two separate heating elements for cooking and smoking
- Real digital electric smoker capable of controlling smoke, temperature, and cooking time
- Size is just perfect for portability although a little bit on the bigger side
- Top of the line external powder epoxy steel build
- Internal polished stainless steel build
- Not well-insulated and internal temperature can be easily affected by outdoor ambient temperature
- Smoke generator part located beside the smoke cabinet will need special attention and care to keep it clean and free of wood chips and grease
- Heat retention suffers significantly after 4 hours, which is the time limit of the digital control
- Reaching desired temperatures will take some time
5. LANDMANN MCO 32954 Landmann Smoky Mountain
Our next recomendation goes to Landmann’s small electric smoker because of its viewing window and the huge heating element – the combination of which sets it apart to our top 1.
The benefits of the viewing window include being able to monitor the meat as soon as you glance at the smoker and being able to watch the progress without letting the heat and smoke escape.
When the viewing window feature is combined with the 1,500-watt heating element, Landmann’s smoker is capable of achieving consistent temperatures.
This smoker also has its disadvantages. For one, the 147.7 square inches of cooking space is too small for our liking.
For another, despite the combination of powder, porcelain and chrome coating and plating used throughout the smoker, the insulation disappoints.
Landmann’s small electric smoker is perfect for someone who wants to smoke meat for a maximum of 5 people and who would like to enjoy the benefits of a viewing window.
- 1,500-watt heating element
- Huge viewing window that allows for monitoring while also containing the heat and smoke within the cabinet
- 3-in-1 combination tray for water pan, grease tray, and wood chips container
- Optimized cooking space that is capable of holding three chrome-plated cooking grates
- Portable thanks to its small size and the side handles
- Not insulated and is easily affected by outside weather
- Smaller-than-normal cooking area
- Temperature controls are hard to get used to
6. Smokehouse Products Little Chief Front Load Smoker
When it comes to cheap electric smokers, Smokehouse Products’ Little Chief Front Load Smoker takes the crown.
It’s the cheapest on the list with price less than $100 which can probably the best choice for beginner who want to try their first meat smoking.
The low price tag doesn’t mean that it suffers in all the features. This smoker is built to last with an embossed aluminum construction that makes it perfect for outdoor smoking more than any other model on this list.
It also features UL, CUL, and CSA certifications. Combined with the 2-year warranty period, you can’t go wrong with this smoker when it comes to durability.
The final feature that propelled this smoker to our list is the front-load wood chips tray.
When it comes to maintaining the temperature and even setting it to the right degree, however, this smoker leaves much to be desired.
Smokehouse Products’ contribution to our list is the best option for someone who’s looking for the cheapest but durable small electric smoker that brings with it a full list of certifications to ensure quality.
- Cheapest portable electric smoker we could find with excellent value for money
- UL, CUL, and CSA certifications
- Long warranty period
- Front-load wood chips tray
- Durable and sturdy
- Temperature control doesn’t have detailed degrees on it, which means you’ll have to do a bit of guesswork
- Maintaining a consistent temperature is hard because the back and bottom parts of this smoker seem to be always hotter than the front
7. Masterbuilt MB20073716 Patio-2-Portable Electric Smoker
The final portable smoker that made it into our top list is a Masterbuilt smoker that shines the most in the cleaning category.
Masterbuilt’s small electric smoker features a 1,400-watt heating element and 280 square inches of cooking space. Also, this smoker includes two chrome-coated smoking racks.
Combined, these elements make an easy-to-clean, durable, and portable electric smoker.
Masterbuilt further adds a built-in temperature gauge and an analog temperature control dial. For someone who might be used to the faults of analog control, these features would mean that this smoker is more than capable of cooking the meat through low or high heat.
Aside from being easy to clean, this smoker has one other unique feature: the foldable legs.
This feature allows for effortless transport and storage, and as such, it takes the crown when it comes to portability.
This smoker is the best option for anyone who’s looking for a unit that is exceptionally easy to clean and has unique features, such as fold-able legs, for optimum portability.
- Huge heating element and considerable cooking space despite the tiny form factor
- Easy to clean thanks to its chrome coating
- Built-in temperature gauge
- The fold able legs of this smoker are especially useful for transport, storage, and overall portability
- Well-insulated and stand up well against various outdoor ambient temperatures
- Dial temperature control isn’t meant for precise cooking temperatures
- A woefully short warranty period of 90 days
At this point, we’ve given you our recommendations for the best small electric smoker that we know of. We’re hoping our comprehensive reviews are useful, and you’re one step closer to the portable unit you’re looking for.
If not, remember that when you look for the perfect compact smoker for you, there are a few things you have to consider.
First, portability shouldn’t mean that it would be sacrificing durable build quality, excellent temperature control, and a heat-resistant smoker body and parts. Second, check if there’s a water pan, a wood chips container, a grease tray, and a drip included the package.
Finally, remember that buying an electric smoker should be an enjoyable process. There are lots of options out there that don’t sacrifice quality and value. All you have to do is take the time to look and see.
I spent most of my life fascinated by food, and the outdoors. I can’t think of a more fitting combo that leads to mastering the art of BBQ one day. I ended up decent enough to grill the perfect burger and choose the best equipment after years of improvement. I create this website for outdoor cooking enthusiasts, who are fueled by interest but lacking in help, feel educated when they leave because I see my past clueless self in them.