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Wood chunks for smoking: best types on the market

Wood chunks for smoking: best types on the market

Many smokers like to use wood chunks for smoking, that is, adding wood chunks to a smoker and using them for smoking meat. The types available are varied, so it can be challenging to know what type of wood is best. This article will look at the different types and how they can be used in smokers.

What are the different types of wood chunks for smoking?

There are many different types of wood chunks available on the market today. We’ve broken down the four most popular types of wood chunks for smoking, along with their benefits and downsides:

Hickory

 The most popular wood chunk for smoking is hickory, which has a unique flavor reminiscent of pie pecan. It produces a lot of smoke to get a rich flavor in your food. There are a few downsides to using hickory; it burns quickly, so you will have to feed your smoker more logs or charcoal. This can be particularly problematic if you smoke meat above 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mesquite 

This is a much less popular choice than hickory; it has a fruit and nutty flavor that is fantastic if you like trying out new meats and even making different types of barbecue. However, such high temperatures will result in an overwhelming amount of smoke, which can be challenging to control when cooking food. Other wood chips are beneficial in smokers, such as apple, cherries, and more.

Applewood 

The use of applewood is more famous for woodchips for smoking. The flavor is fruity, with a mild smokiness that will provide your food with a delicious flavor. You should be careful as applewood can be pretty bitter at high temperatures, so it should be avoided if you want to add a lot of smoke to your meat.

Cherry 

Cherry was not designed to be used as a smoking wood, but it can be used as chunks for smoking. The flavor is sweet but with a kick that you might overlook at first; the fruitiness will go very well with meats such as pork and poultry.

How are they different, and how can you use them?

The difference in these four wood chunks is cost availability and unique flavor profiles. Smokers often use Applewood to add a subtle smokiness to their food without overpowering it with smoke. They should be burned at low or medium temperatures to avoid making your meat taste bitter.

When it comes to how you use these wood chunks for smoking in your smoker, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • The smoke produced by burning chunks of wood gives your food a unique taste but does not make the food taste like the type of wood you used. Some smokers don’t like this, as they believe that their meat should taste like the type of wood they use.   
  • Hickory provides a rich and intense flavor to your food, while mesquite is believed to be one of the best woods to make barbecue, as it imparts its unique flavor. Applewood doesn’t provide the same intense hickory flavor, but it does have enough smoke to give your food a smoky taste.
  • If you are using a chest smoker, the temperature will be much lower than that of traditional smokers. For this reason, while they produce more smoke than many other types of wood chunks for smoking, they may not be ideal as smoking wood. The location of your smoker will be essential “more important” than its type of wood, as it will affect how fast the temperature rises.

The best way to use them?

Whichever type of wood logs you choose for smoking should suit your needs and preferences. We’ve looked at the different types of wood chunks available on the market today but also outlined how you can use them in smokers. Hopefully, this has given you a better idea of choosing your wood chunks for smoking and how to use them for the best results.

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