How to Choose the Right Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

How to Choose the Right Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on how to choose the right Masterbuilt electric smoker! Whether you are a seasoned pitmaster or a backyard grilling enthusiast, investing in a quality electric smoker can revolutionize your smoking experience.

Masterbuilt is a renowned brand known for its high-quality electric smokers that offer convenience, precision, and exceptional flavor. This article will cover the main differences between models and help guide you to the Masterbuilt electric smoker for your needs.

Note: most links in this article are Affiliate links, see Affiliate Disclosure, thank you.

If your time is short, we highly recommend the Masterbuilt Digital Electric Smoker 140B. We chose this model because of the ample space and excellent temperature control. Also, loading wood chips is simple with the 140B by filling the load tube and inserting it into the smoker. Head over to our review of the 140B and get a closer look, or check the price on

Introduction to Masterbuilt Electric Smokers

Masterbuilt, a leading brand in the world of smokers, has been around since the 1970s. Their electric smokers quickly gained a reputation for their reliability and performance. Over the years, Masterbuilt has continued to refine and innovate its designs, catering to the evolving needs of barbecue enthusiasts.

Electric smokers offer several advantages over traditional smokers. First and foremost, they are incredibly user-friendly. You can set your desired temperature with a few simple steps: load the smoker with wood chips and let it work its magic.

Electric smokers are also known for providing consistent temperature control, ensuring that your food is always cooked to perfection. Furthermore, they require less maintenance and cleanup than charcoal or wood smokers, making them a convenient option for busy individuals.

The Difference in Masterbuilt Electric Smoker Models

Masterbuilt offers a range of electric smokers, each with its own unique features and capabilities. Let us start by breaking the smokers into two main types: digital and analog.

masterbuilt digital smoker controls

What Is the Difference Between Digital and Analog Electric Smokers?

The primary distinction between digital and analog Masterbuilt electric smokers lies in their control mechanism and overall user experience. Digital models are equipped with a built-in digital panel that allows for precise temperature adjustments and the ability to set cooking time.

This feature makes establishing and maintaining the desired temperature effortless, ensuring consistent results every time. While the time feature may not be necessary for most smoked foods, it can be a valuable addition for overnight smoking of jerky or fish.

Moreover, digital smokers can incorporate advanced technologies like Bluetooth connectivity, enabling users to monitor and control their smokers through smartphone apps remotely.

On the other hand, analog models utilize a more traditional knob for temperature adjustments. The main advantages of analog smokers are their higher temperature ranges, lower price, ease of use, and the convenience of easy replacement if the controller wears out.

However, monitoring the temperature becomes necessary when making adjustments, such as adding wood chips, water, or changing the cooking temperature. In such cases, it is essential to monitor the temperature for at least 30 minutes or more.

While analog smokers may lack the technological advancements of their digital counterparts, they offer simplicity and reliability at a budget-friendly price.

Ultimately, the choice between digital and analog Masterbuilt electric smokers depends on personal preferences regarding ease of use and desired technological features.…

The Pros and Cons of Smokers With Glass Doors vs. Solid Doors

Many models of Masterbuilt smokers have glass doors to provide visibility for the food being smoked inside. However, glass doors have some serious issues that limit their usefulness. First, most glass doors lose heat.

In the big picture, the amount of heat loss is not a deal breaker but something to note. Next, glass doors tend to weigh more than metal-only doors. Then, glass doors can be fragile, easy to break, or a point of failure, like seals wearing out.

Masterbuilt electric smoker glass door residue

Finally, the same smoke residue that we know and love will cover the inside of the glass door, making it impossible to see through. Now, you can clean the glass after each use, but that defeats the purpose of seasoning, at least to some point.

On a smoker like the Masterbuilt 140B, the door is a two-layer insulated door with a gasket seal. More basic models, like the Smoke Hollow 30-inch, have a single piece sheet metal door.

Masterbuilt electric smoker Insulated door

Some doors include an easy-to-read thermometer, making it easy to monitor the temperature. Most of the solid doors are easy to remove for modifications or repairs. For these reasons, solid doors are a better option for most users.   

40-Inch vs 30-Inch Masterbuilt Electric Smokers, Does Smoker Size Matter?

When faced with the choice between a 40-inch and a 30-inch Masterbuilt electric smoker, the size of the smoker does indeed matter and depends on several factors. The 30-inch smoker is more suitable for smaller households or individuals who have limited space but still want to enjoy the benefits of smoking their food.

Its compact size makes it highly portable and easier to store when not in use. The price difference is another factor that may influence your decision. When writing this article, a Masterbuilt 30-inch digital smoker was $150 cheaper than its 40-inch digital counterpart.

Finally, a 30-inch smoker typically requires less electricity and fewer woodchips, but that covers most of its advantages.

40Inch vs 30Inch Masterbuilt Electric Smokers

On the other hand, a Masterbuilt 40-inch smoker boasts a massive 970 square inches of cooking area, compared to the 535 square inches of cooking surface in a 30-inch analog smoker. The surface area figure does not even consider the extra height between shelves.

To cook larger items in a 30-inch smoker, you would need to remove a shelf, further reducing the cooking surface area. In terms of storage, the footprint of the 40-inch smoker is only slightly larger than that of the 30-inch smoker.

Without a leg kit installed, the 40-inch smoker is 10 inches taller and 4 inches wider than its 30-inch counterpart. However, it is worth noting that the 40-inch smoker requires slightly more electricity, with its 1200-watt element, compared to the smaller 800-watt element in the 30-inch smoker.

While we prefer the 40-inch Masterbuilt electric smoker, whether one opts for a 40-inch or a 30-inch smoker should depend on their specific requirements and lifestyle factors such as available space, frequency of use, and desired capacity.

On a final note, if you need extra oven space for parties, a 40-inch Masterbuilt smoker that has never been used for smoking can serve as an excellent warming oven. You can place finished dishes like green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, or even dinner rolls inside at 170 degrees to keep your food dinner-ready.

Are Masterbuilt Electric Smoker Leg Extension Kits Worth the Extra Cost?

When considering whether the leg extension kits for the Masterbuilt Electric Smoker are worth the extra cost, it is crucial to examine their benefits and usability. One significant advantage of these leg extensions is the convenience and accessibility they offer.

By increasing the height of the smoker, users can avoid unnecessary bending or stooping while checking on their food or adding wood chips. Not straining to smoke your food can significantly enhance the overall smoking experience, particularly for individuals with mobility issues.

Moreover, the extended legs provide stability, preventing accidental tipping over and ensuring safety during operation. Additionally, these leg extensions are also designed to seamlessly integrate with Masterbuilt smokers, guaranteeing a secure fit and optimal functionality.

Lastly, lifting the smoker becomes essential to ensure good airflow if you plan on making any modifications or adding custom-built smoke generators.

Overall, although the leg extension kits may come with an additional cost, their added convenience, improved accessibility, and enhanced safety make them a worthwhile investment for those seeking an elevated smoking experience.

Making the Choice!

How to choose the right Masterbuilt Electric Smoker is a difficult question, so let us review it.

Firstly, you must decide between a digital or analog model. While the digital option may come with a slightly higher price tag, its superior performance makes it well worth the investment. The precision and control offered by digital models ensure a more enjoyable smoking experience.

Next, you must contemplate whether to opt for a glass or solid door. It is important to note that glass doors tend to accumulate smoke residue, rendering them useless without regular cleaning. Therefore, we recommend choosing a solid door for long-lasting functionality unless you are willing to commit to constant maintenance.

Now, let’s address the question of size. Is a 40-inch or a 30-inch Masterbuilt electric smoker the better choice? Unless you have specific spatial or budgetary constraints, we highly recommend the 40-inch smoker. Its larger capacity allows for greater versatility and flexibility in your smoking endeavors.

Moving on, let’s discuss the leg extension kit. Is it worth the additional cost? The leg extension kit is a fantastic add-on for those who opt for the 40-inch smoker and have ample storage space. It enhances the convenience and accessibility of your smoker.

However, if you have chosen the 30-inch smoker, it may be wise to forgo this accessory because most people choose it based on storage size.

Masterbuilt 30″ Analog Electric Smoker

The Masterbuilt 30″ analog electric smoker is one step plug-in and ready to use. The lack of digital controls allows you to store it outdoors in a covered area without worries.

Masterbuilt 30″ Digital Electric Smoker

The Masterbuilt 30″ digital electric smoker is a compact, user-friendly, and budget-friendly option. If you are looking to experiment with small batches, this smoker is ideal.

Masterbuilt 40″ Digital Electric Smoker

The Masterbuilt 40″ digital electric smoker is the most versatile size smoker on our list. With the full-size of the smoker, you can cook any dish or dishes.

Masterbuilt 40″ Digital Electric Smoker with Window and Legs

If you have the space, a Masterbuilt smoker with a leg kit can be a back saver. Also, a glass door can be a nice feature if you are committed to keeping it clean.

In Conclusion

How to choose the right Masterbuilt Electric Smoker requires careful consideration of various factors. By weighing the pros and cons of digital vs. analog, glass door vs. solid door, and 40-inch vs. 30-inch models, you can make an informed decision that suits your needs and preferences.

Happy smoking!