How to Use a Smoking Box


Using a smoker box is the best way to convert your propane grill into a wood-fired grill smoker. From wood chips to grill setups, discover everything you need to know about one of the best grills in the world.

How to use a smoker box on a gas grill

A common question among grill fans is, ” Can I grill on my gas grill?” “. The good news is that you can turn your standard gas grill into your very own backyard smoker with just one simple gadget.

The even better news is that it’s easy to do for users of all skill levels.

If YOU want to replicate the competitor’s smoked brisket or baby back ribs the elite grill masters can cook, YOU’VE come to the right place.

The best way to smoke on a gas grill is to invest in a smoker. These little beauties in metal boxes are a great way to turn a regular propane stove into your very own outdoor smoker.

A smoker works by transferring the heat from the gas grill burners to the wood chips inside the interior. This allows the pieces to burn and release smoke through the vents in the cookbox.

In this guide we will show you how to use THEM correctly and which types of incense burners are best for which type of use. Let’s get into that!

rectangular smoker box on grills next to pork

Types of smoker boxes

The best smoker boxes can be placed on the flavor or baffle bars of your propane grill. When your grill heats up causing your chips to burn and smoke.

These grilling accessories can come in a variety of forms, but the main ones we want to focus on are the top and bottom grills.

Under the grill

These smoker boxes are V-shaped to fit between burner/flavorizer bars and cooking grates. This will fit any propane grill as long as you can remove the grates and have enough room to fit in the gap between the bar and the grate. The advantage of under-grill smokers is that their means can direct the smoke towards the meat more easily.

Our recommendation: Broil King 60190 Premium. This stainless steel smoker box features adjustable vents to control smoke flow, while its two chambers allow it to double as a water pan.

  • With the Broil King Premium Stainless Steel Smoker Box Accessory, SHE can enjoy the same smoky flavor…
  • This smoker works with any gas grill and features a base designed to go straight…
  • With two different chambers, this smoker box gives you options that others don’t have: fill it…

About grid

These devices sit on cooking grates and are often rectangular or cubic in shape, although some also come in disk or tube shapes. The capacity of the firewood varies between models, but the main disadvantage is that its position points the vents up and away from the meat to the side or under the box.

Our recommendation: cave tools. This large smoker box has enough capacity to extend cooking times, while its stainless steel construction reduces the risk of warping.

  • Smoked Flavor: Perfectly sized wood smoker, whether you need large or small boxes, this grill cart…
  • Durable metal, easy storage: Hinged lid gives access to baskets for adding wood chips;…
  • Works with both charcoal and gas grills. Use the style and size of splitter YOU need! Occasionally…

Choose your wood chips


When your smoker box is ready, you need to choose your type of wood. Note here that we don’t want other fuels like lump coal or briquettes. We only want good old-fashioned drywood.

Your choice of smoking wood came down to what you’re cooking, but here’s a quick guide to the best types and what to pair with them.



Perhaps the most popular type of wood for grilling. Rich in flavor and smoke, it pairs best with red meat and pork.



With its sweet and mild taste, the apple is perfect for poultry and pork. It can also be blended with other woods for a more nuanced flavor profile.



Very sweet fruitwood that can be paired with all meats except fish quickly. You can bring back poultry and pork ribs with a beautiful deep red color.



Perhaps the strongest aroma of all grill woods, and it’s so important to use with care. Perfect with beef, but drowns out white meat and fish.

Once YOU have chosen your wood, YOU simply fill your smokehouse with it. Avoid bagging it and instead make sure there is room between the pieces for air circulation.

Doesn’t soak your wood chips.

Contrary to popular belief, I do not recommend removing wood chips. There’s a lot of debate on this topic, but Amazing Ribs has made a strong case as to why you shouldn’t. And hey, if they’re also okay with skipping the soaking stage, then I’m fine with that.

In short, soaked potatoes can produce smoke that tastes sour and bitter. They also don’t allow us to achieve the art of slow burning that we want to achieve with our wood.

V shaped wood smoker burner with chips inside and open lid

Set up your gas grill for grilling

In order to achieve the ideal grill kitchen, we need to prepare the grill for indirect grilling in 2 zones. This requires mentally drawing two zones on our grid surface. One side holds our heat source and smoker box while the other side is for our food.

The basic idea is that when the meat isn’t directly exposed to the heat of the burner, it can be cooked slowly and slowly without burning or drying out.

If your grill has 2 burners, simply turn on one and leave the other off. If you have 3 or 4 burners, try just one. If you are having trouble getting the cooking temperature to 107°C (225°F) & you may be trying to light a second burner. Always make sure you have an idle burner on one end to place food on.

An example of a 2-zone setup for cooking ribs on a <a href=gas grill” width=”700″ data-sizes=”(max-width: 640px) 100vw, 640px” data-srcset=” 640w,×225.jpg 300w,×375.jpg 500w” />
An example of a 2-zone setup for cooking ribs on a gas grill. 

Place your smoker box on the burner farthest from your food. If your case has adjustable vents, I recommend setting them to halfway. This should ensure you get good smoke performance without burning your chips too quickly.

Pro tip: add water to the chamber. Gas cooking tends to remove more moisture from the food than charcoal or granulate. Use a few pans of water on the cooking grates to add moisture to the cooking environment.

Close the grill lid, turn on the grill and allow it to come up to cooking temperature. If you are having trouble setting the temperature to around 225°F, you will need to adjust your burner accordingly. Whatever changes you make, give the cookbox room temperature some time to adjust. Good grilling is a matter of patience!

By the time your gas grill comes up to temperature, your smoker should have started smoking. If not, wait a few more minutes. The great thing about grilling on a propane grill is that it’s pretty easy to keep temperatures consistent for as long as you need them!

Pro tip: If YOU are measuring the temperature, be sure to take the measurement from the side the meat WILL be resting on. Temperatures will be higher near the heat source, but it’s the temperature the meat is cooked to that matters.

Add new wood chips to the Broil King smoker box

When to add more wood?

Like smoking in a traditional charcoal smoker & # x2014; Check the wood regularly to make sure it is still producing smoke. When the smoke seems weak or has stopped completely, you need to add more wood chips.

There are so many variables in grilling, from temperature to chamber size to box ventilation settings. This means there is no hard and fast rule as to how long it takes before YOU need to reload your chips. Pay attention to the smoke development during cooking!

Pro tip: Once the meat has reached 71°C, you don’t need to add any more wood. The meat’s absorption rate will have slowed, so save your wood chips for another smoke!

As you fill the box, use tongs and gloves to gently remove it from the grill. Place on a table or countertop and simply place new chips on top of the burned ones.

Replace the box between the grates and burners and you’re good to go. Depending on what you smoke, you may need to repeat the reload.

This will prevent wood chips from catching fire

Thanks to the steel construction of your smoker box, your wood chips are unlikely to catch fire. However, here are some simple precautions we can take to ensure your safety:

  • Do not set your cooking temperature above 500°F
  • Be careful with the placement of charcoal around the box. Make sure that no objects can fall into the smoker box, which could cause embers to fall and ignite the wood.
  • Replace your box if damaged or bent. Any deformation could prevent you from closing the lid, which could result in burning food or charcoal.

If you see flames coming out of the case, immediately close the case vents to stop the airflow. If your box does not have adjustable vents, carefully remove the box from the grill and set aside. The box gets very hot, so use tongs and grilling gloves!

It can be gas grilled with just a few simple modifications to its current setup ( source ), and it’s a great gateway for newcomers to bridge the gap to grilling for their next grill.

Have you tried using a smoker box on a propane grill? What tips would you give beginners? Let us know in the comments below!

Frequently asked Questions

Can you put charcoal in a smoker box?

If you want to mimic the aromas and flavor of smoking with charcoal, you can try replacing the wood chips with a small amount of lump or briquette charcoal in your smoker box. You must first use a charcoal fireplace to light the embers before transferring them to the crate.

How long does a smoker box last?

Keep wood chips in a smoker box for 30-60 minutes before needing to be replaced. The time depends on the size of the box, the cooking temperature of the grill, and the ventilation setting on the smoker box lid.

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