Vertical smoker do's and dont's

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by 3montes, May 6, 2016.

  1. 3montes

    3montes Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I have a 7 rack vertical smoker mounted along side my Santa Maria grill mounted on a trailer. What are the do's and dont's as far as different meats in a vertical. I know I don't want any poultry on top of anything else but are there other hard and fast rules? It seems to me I don't want beef dripping down on pork or pork on beef etc.

    So maybe the realization of a vertical is it's a one trick pony? One kind of meat at a time?
  2. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Other than poultry, I don't worry too much about which meat is on the top or the bottom in my vertical.  Others may have their own opinions about this, but I don't think it matters much.  I regularly cook pork and beef together in my vertical, and don't really use any hard and fast rule about what goes on top...other than this:  if I'm cooking something pretty fatty, like a pork butt, I'll usually put that on the top rack so it will baste whatever is below it as all that fat renders out.  There may be folks out there who don't care for pork fat basting there beef cuts, but I kinda like it myself.

  3. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    For the most part it comes down to personal preference. Some don't like beef dripping on pork, or pork dripping on beef, or salmon dripping on chicken. When I am cooking different cuts in my vertical I either put them on the same rack, or stagger them side to side on different racks. Or I put the meat on a cooling rack or whatever rack I have over a foil drip pan.

    I really don't care but I have some family and friends who wont eat pork. So there can't be any pork dripping on nothing except more pork.
  4. phatbac

    phatbac Master of the Pit

    I have had situations with my WSM where i was worried about pork getting on beef because one of the poeple eating the ribs was Muslim. so i put the beef on the top rack and put a foil pan underneath. I have a rib and roasting rack that fits perfectly with a foil pan underneath and allows smoke under the meat. i recommend if you are worried about dripping and cross contaminating then pick one or two of those off of amazon.

    the rack is set for a roast like this but if you invert the cross pieces you can smoke 4 racks of ribs and with a disposable foil pan underneath you catch the drippings (jus anyone) and it allows 360 degrees of smoke on the meat. they about $25 from amazon and made by weber. cleans up easy in the dishwasher too!

    Hope this helps!

    phatbac (Aaron)
  5. lancep

    lancep Master of the Pit

    I don't see it as a one trick pony at all. My general rule in the WSM is chicken on the bottom, ribs on top. I don't want any thing to drip on my ribs and mess with my rub and I don't want chicken to drip on anything. So, if I'm smoking chicken and pork shoulder, the shoulder's on top. Ribs and brisket, the ribs are on top. Other than that I don't care much. Shoulder's going to get chopped up Carolina style anyway and brisket has a pretty bold flavor.

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