What Wood type for Cheese Smoking?

Discussion in 'Cheese' started by kerbos5, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    Here is the deal I have an   A-Maze-N-Smoker  in the mail right now, and I bought hickory, cherry, maple, and mesquite dust, out of those 4 what's the general consensus on which has the better flavor for cheese? I plan on a 3-4 hour smoke for the duration, not sure if that has any affect on wood type. Cheese type: Sharp Cheddar, Gouda, Mozzarella, Colby jack. Thanks guys trying to get this right the first time. If you want post your mistakes....so I don't do them ;)
  2. dave54

    dave54 Smoking Fanatic

    they are all good ,cherry being the mildest followed by ( in my eyes) maple mesquite and hickory

    you can mellow out the stonger smoke flavor by less time smoking tho

    try them all and go from there and also they will mellow out the smokiness by leaving the

    cheese to rest in the fridge for a week or so.

    Just an fyi tho I've never been able to wait more than 4- 5 days
  3. biaviian

    biaviian Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    kerbos, I'm waiting on mine too.  I am going to go with some cherry for the first time and try that on some Munster, swiss, and jalapeno. 
  4. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    Oh dang I didn't even think about jalapeno...yummy, I might start with maple then...wanna use some of the cheese for a wine tasting in July.. 
  5. biaviian

    biaviian Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Oh I forgot.  I got some dust from a wine barrel.  I may use that instead.
  6. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I vote for the cherry, I use apple myself.
  7. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    Considering the cheeses you are planning to smoke, I would go for the hickory.
  8. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I did a mess of cheese with a lot of Hickory smoke. Then we had some tasting. Most thought it needed more smoke. I would think if I used anything more mild than Hickory (which is almost everything), it would have definitely been too mild. When I smoked it, I was worried about it getting too much smoke. Next time I will not worry about that. I will use Hickory & smoke the daylights out of it! The way I smoke things, I think "one of these days I'm going to put too much smoke on something". So far that hasn't happened, however I still have not used Mesquite (I guess I'm chicken).

  9. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I smoked my last batch of cheese for 4 1/2 hours with Cherry, and it was too much smoke for me.  I used one of my little gadgets and started both ends.  Outside temps climbed into the 80's.  Next time I'll stop at 2 1/2 hours, depending on the outside temps.

    Outside temps play a big role in cold smoking.  Try to smoke cheese in the evening or early in the morning.  Also, I freeze a milk carton and stick it in the smoker.  Some guys use a pan of ice to keep the temp down inside the smoker.

    Pick up some Mozzarella sticks and throw them in the smoker.  They make great snacks and you don't have to let them age in the fridge.  Pepperjack is really good smoked too.

    Good Luck and Enjoy!!!

  10. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yup---What TJohnson said.

    Although mine weren't too smoky, of all the types of cheese I smoked, The Mozzarella was by far the best.

    I also threw a tray of salt in---That was GREAT!

  11. biaviian

    biaviian Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    So do you want the temp to be as cold as possible?  Besides melting, what will high temps hurt?
  12. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    Ok guys I got my A-maze-n smoker and have gotten all the oil off of it, looks like I'm going to do a mess of cheese in the morning, cheddar, sharp cheddar, mozz & sticks, and 4lbs of gouda. Looks like the temps tomorrow morning are going to be around low to mid 70's, and I will be using the hickory to start....2 questions....how long should I leave the cheese smoking if outside temps play part, and do I really need a tray of ice with that outside temp? I was thinking 3 hours on smoke as I will load up my 24 Smoke Vault....just got a call, my brother in law has faith in me (haven't disappointed yet), and is bringing over a mess of cheese....:)


    Got-r loaded up... lit both ends of A-maze-n at 8am central......


    Ready for there rest....now I pray to the cheese gods that it comes out OK. ;)
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2010
  13. scarbelly

    scarbelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    The first thing I noted was the smoker needs more sawdust. If you dont fill it up to the top it tends to burn faster and puts out more smoke from the testing I did -

    The cheese will soften and absorb smoke based on the ambient temp inside the box so a little ice pan will help the cheese stay  a little firmer and not absorb too much smoke.

    Also throw some pepperjack on there it really comes out good

    Once you have done this a couple of times you really need to try smoking fresh mozarella. I get it in large chubs from Costco in the section back by the meat where they have a lot of fresh cheese - cut each roll into two pieces and let it sit out in the fridge for about 3 hours to form a skin on the outside so it does not release its moisture while smoking - I smoke it for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours depending on your personal taste then it goes into the fridge for a couple hours to firm up and you have some really good eats

    Here is a link to one I did a while back


    You are gonna really like smoking cheese

    Let me know if I can help
  14. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    Hey Scar.... I did what you said and added more to the amazen, and put some ice in a pan underneath, outside temps are low 70's right now, and the inside temp is right at 57-60 degrees...the smoker is in the shade, and I do have one pepperjack in there, and 2 fresh mozz rolls in back, I let sit out for an hour.....:)...thanks
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2010
  15. scarbelly

    scarbelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Is the mozarella the one you buy that comes in water? If so keep the smoke to an hour to an hour and a half - if it is the regular brick type, it can go the full 3 hour smoke ( if that is how long you are smoking)    remember - except for the mozarella snack sticks and fresh water mozzarella, everything else goes into airtight bags to age for 2 -3 weeks after the smoke

    Good luck
  16. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    Yeah there are 2 fresh ones in back, gonna pull in about .5hours, thanks for the heads up.
  17. biaviian

    biaviian Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    That's a lot of cheese!  I can't wait to her about your results.  I'm planning on doing the same tomorrow or Saturday.
  18. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Looks good! Can't wait for the results.
  19. kerbos5

    kerbos5 Fire Starter

    This is a lot of cheese, I'm sitting on 3.5 hours right now, lit the middle of the amzen  for more smoke about an hour ago....... thinking I'm going to leave it in for another .5 to and hour...any thoughts?
  20. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Cheers to you My Friend for pulling off a successful cheese smoke!!!   [​IMG]

    Scar is correct, you need to fill up the smoker to the brim, but not overfill.  You're better off burning 2-3 full rows than 5 partially full rows.  You just have to play around with it a little to get the hang of it.

    Also, humidity plays a big role in the burning process.  You'll notice a difference on hot & muggy days.  Try freezing a 1 gallon milk jug or 1/2 gallon carton and put it in your smoker.  It helps keep the temps down.

    What was the outside temp?

    How long for your smoke time?


Share This Page