So, you’ve heard the buzz about how good electric smokers are, maybe you are thinking of getting one? But, there is a nagging voice in the back of your head. Are electric smokers healthy? Or are electric smokers bad for your health?
It is a valid question and well worth considering before you get started with a new smoker. Electric smokers might be a relatively new kid on the block, but they have certainly made their mark and offer a great alternative to charcoal smokers, gas smokers and pellet grills.
But, are electric smokers good for you? Is it safe to use an electric smoker? Is using an electric smoker healthy? Let’s have a look…
What are electric smokers?
If you aren’t quite sure what an electric smoker is then it is worth knowing that they use an electric element to cook your food by convection (similar to an electric oven), whilst you add wood chips to provide the smoke for amazingly tasty ribs or turkey.
Electric smokers are very convenient and easy to use. This probably means that you will use one more often than a charcoal or pellet smoker making them a great option for anyone looking for a backyard smoker. They use a heat convection system for smoking meat and vegetables. A heat convection system means that the food is cooked evenly from all directions.
You can use an electric smoker for cold smoking at 60°F – 80°F (for things like smoked salmon), and hot smoking at 180°F – 280°F (for things like Turkey and Brisket). Many electric smokers have the option of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth which allows you to control the temperature without even getting up from the couch!
Is using an electric smoker healthy?
It is worth pointing out that it is important to think about what you eat and how balanced your diet is. I am sure that you know this and don’t need me to say anymore. But, suffice to say if all you ever eat is smoked meat then it isn’t the healthiest diet you could have.
But smoking meat is actually healthier than grilling it or frying it and will retain more of its nutritional value. Using charcoal on a traditional smoker can increase the build-up of carcinogenic particles. So, in a sense, if you are planning to eat meat anyway, smoking it is relatively healthy.
Is an electric smoker carcinogenic?
One benefit of electric smokers is that they do not drip fats. Other types of smokers and grills produce polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons when fat and meat juices drip from the rack onto the charcoal or flame.
Recommendations for healthier cooking
- To avoid manufacturing residues, a newly bought electric smoker must be cured before its first use.
- Dry marinades produce more carcinogens. Opt for wet marinades instead.
- Use lean meat rather than fatty cuts.
- Try to balance your diet so serve your smoked meat with salad or vegetables.
- Make sure you clean the electric smoker with hot soapy water after every use.
- Always consider eating smoked meat in moderation. I know it tastes great and you can’t get enough of it, but try not to eat meat every day.
Are Electric Smokers Safe to Use?
We have established that electric smokers are a relatively healthy way to cook, but are they safe too?
Well, yes they are entirely safe to use. Electric smokers not only reduce smoking time but also prevent smoke leakage. Electric smokers are ideal for people with breathing and lung problems, as they don’t produce any pollution. They are equipped with advanced insulation to retain heat and smoke.
Of course, electric smokers need electricity (as do pellet grills), so you need to be careful about using an electric smoker in the rain. Try to find a dry place to use it, but don’t be tempted to use an electric smoker in the garage.
It is advised to take some extra care to get the most from your electric smoker. If you are settled on electric smokers for entirely healthy meals, you need to review it. You need to do some steps yourself to ensure healthy meals. To get the most from your electric smoker, you need to keep your diet as healthy as possible. You must increase the intake of vegetables and fruits along with lean meats and seafood.
Are electric smokers good for your health?
I think it would be pushing it to claim that they are good for your health. We are not talking about exercise machines or salads here. But, they aren’t any worse for your health than most other options for cooking meat and are healthier than many alternatives. Are electric smokers healthy? Kind of!
We don’t think that it should be something that puts you off from using an electric smoker. Just maybe don’t get carried away and use it every single day!
If you are new to smoking and looking at getting your own smoker, please check out our guide to the best smoker for beginners.