How to Use a Meat Thermometer in a Smoker Safely (Step-by-Step Guide)

Want to relish the most hunger-rousing and mouth-watering grilled or cooked meat ever? Then, you must grill or cook that meat within a temperature range, fixed for it. This is where a sound knowledge of how to use a meat thermometer in a smoker is a must.

Therefore, today our write up gives you a detail of the pros and cons related to the use of a meat thermometer with a smoker. 

How to Use a Meat Thermometer in Smoker

How to Use a Meat Thermometer in Smoker

Introduce yourself to every of the following sections and their points to be a pro user of meat thermometer with a smoker. We guarantee that your grilled or cooked meat won’t let you down anymore. 

Mount the probe to the smoker

Drill a hole

The first thing that you need to do to place the thermometer probe is drilling a hole on the smoker where the probes will sit. The hole will be used as a gateway  for the threaded thermometer stem to pass through.

Does your smoker feature multiple grates? In that case, we recommend  you to use a thermometer for every of the grates. This will enable you to monitor temperature in the best possible way.

But, if you want to place only one thermometer for any of the grates then it is wise to place the thermometer closer to the uppermost grate. Be aware enough not to let the thermometer reach too close to the grill’s top.

Pass the stem

Are you done with the drilling of the hole? Well, then it’s time for passing the thermometer stem through this drilled hole. Make sure that you pass the threads completely without letting any portion hung loosely.

Place the nut securely

In the third and last step of thermometer mounting, you must seal the drilled hole using nut. Although you are to snug the nut well but at the same time you must be aware enough not to tighten the nut too much. This otherwise, will cause damage to the thermometer’s assembly components. 

Monitor the temperature

Are the probes are mounted? Well, then the next step is – monitoring the temperature read. To accomplish this step like a pro, you must stick to the points we are sharing with you below:

  • Keep a keen eye on the dial pad of your thermometer. This is the part where the temperature read is shown.
  • Whenever you see the desired temperature read, stop the cooking process.
  • If you find the temperature read to be too high, then close the vents at once. Doing so you will resist huge amount of Oxygen from entering the smoker thus the temperature will go down. 
  • If you feel like temperature is going down and down, then do the opposite of the instruction given in the immediate previous point.
  • Do you feel like you aren’t getting the exact temperature reading? Then, nothing to be concerned because we have an ace fix for it.

Things to do when the thermometer is wireless

The process that we have given at the first section of this article is basically for the wired thermometer. But, what should you do with a thermometer that is free from wire? The things you need to do with such a thermometer follow below:

  • First of all, check and over check the thermometer batteries to ensure their correct and secure placement.
  • Make sure that the probes are securely connected to the transmitter and temperature can be seen.
  • Maintain a healthy distance between the transmitter and the source of the heat. Otherwise, excessive heat may damage the transmitter’s functionality.
  • Dig the probe in the food that you are cooking. Secure and tight insertion of the probe is a must because the probe must be attached to the food till the end of the process.
  • You must keep on checking the temperature read after a certain minutes. Therefore, we strongly suggest you be closer to the receiver. 
  • Whenever the receiver shows the desired temperature read, remove the probe with the utmost care. Otherwise, your fingers may get burnt.

Optimum temperature for different types of food

In case you aren’t sure of the optimum temperature reading for the variety of food cooking, the following list is definitely for your assistance.

  • Fresh pork: Between 160 and 170 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Beef: Between 140 and 170 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Veal: Between 145 and 170 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Chicken: Between 170 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Turkey: Between 179 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit

Tips to be considered

  • Never place the thermometer over the upper part of the smoker. Then you are likely to have an inaccurate reading because at that part temperature is always at its highest.
  • Always maintain a distance of three inches between the thermometer probe and the grate. Only then you are likely to get an authentic reflection of your food temperature.
  • The usual size of the hole us three-eighth of an inch. But, if the component to be passed through it is wider, you should drill the hole a bit wider.
  • Keep checking the temperature reading at least after half an hour to make sure that everything is going on as intended. 
  • In case of repeated inaccurate temperature reading even after following the calibration process, you should replace the smoker. 

Final words

In the end, it won’t be wrong in saying that using a meat thermometer isn’t as easy as it sounds to be. You must be knowledgeable in how to use a meat thermometer in a smoker. Only then you can foster the expectation to relish the most hunger-rousing and mouth-watering grilled meat ever.

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