Over the years, people have realized they can perfectly smoke their own meats from home, thanks to the development of user-friendly smokers. Masterbuilt is one of the top manufacturers of home smokers today, but unfortunately traditional Masterbuilt digital electric smokers don’t have the facility to cold smoke foods (they smoke using heat). That means you can’t cure meats or smoke foods such as cheese or salmon.
Now there is a separate cold smoking kit available that enables you to do just that. In this article we’re going to review the Masterbuilt 20070112 cold smoker attachment to see if its worth the money.
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What is cold smoking?
This is where food is smoked at a very low temperature, typically at no higher than 20-30 degrees centigrade or approximately 70-120 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that the food remains raw and is just infused with smoky flavor without starting to cook. Hot smoking is different in that it both smokes and cooks the food at the same time.
Because an ordinary electric smoker will only hot smoke your food, you need a separate attachment if you want to do cold smoking.
What is the Masterbuilt cold smoker attachment?
Masterbuilt have created an electric cold smoker kit to be used with their smokers, which can be used to smoke foods such as cheese, fish or ham.
The electric cold smoker is a small unit that attaches to the Masterbuilt electric smoker. Smoke is generated from an external wood chip chamber that gives you continuous smoke for a temperature range of between 100-120 degrees fahrenheit.
It fits on all Masterbuilt Digital Electric Smokers by attaching to the wood chip loading port of the smoker. It can smoke your favorite food continuously for up to 6 hours (6 hours is what’s advertised – we found it to be closer to 5 or 5 1/2 hours). This slow smoking at a low temperature is excellent for curing food.
The Masterbuilt Cold Smoker can also fit on non-digital smokers that use the same chip loader. If the chip loaders for the digital and non-digital are not the same you can create a connection using dryer vent tubing. It uses regular wood chips and provides a continuous feed wood chip system.
If you’re a fan of smoked foods (particularly foods like cheese that cannot be hot smoked) and own a Masterbuilt electric smoker you might find this an indispensable addition to your current setup.
In this short video Masterbuilt shows you how their smoker works:
Features of the Masterbuilt Cold Smoker
This is one of the best cold smoker kits available on the market, and is a “must buy” item if you want to cold smoke using your Masterbuilt. It features the following:
- Uses normal wood chips
- Fits on any Masterbuilt digital electric smoker
- Excellent for curing and cold smoking various foods
- Comes with an easy to use wood chip system
You get excellent results when you add a 3 inch aluminum dryer tube with an adaptor to remove the bitter creosote from the smoke. This will also provide a total temperature control for the food you are smoking.
What it is suitable for?
The Masterbuilt Cold Smoker is not just for smoking raw foods such as cheese or chorizo. It is also suitable for flavoring chicken breasts, beef, salmon or pork. You can then proceed to roast, bake or grill these foods.
At the cold temperatures the Masterbuilt Cold Smoking Kit does not cook food so you need to be careful about what foods you smoke.
Sweet woods like apple palm or cherry are some of the most suitable for use with a cold smoker.
Although cheese and salmon are many people’s favorites when it comes to cold smoking here are a few more things you might not have thought of:
Masterbuilt Cold Smoker Pros
- This cold smoker kit is a perfect addition to your regular smoker (works with most Masterbuilt digital electric smokers). It has a gravity feed mechanism that will work to your advantage to ensure a slow and continuous burning of wood chips. You get at least 6 hours of continuous steady smoke.
- The Masterbuilt cold smoking kit is well built for great smoke delivery. With its large capacity of wood chips, you are saved the hassle of short refills. This way you can multitask as you smoke your meats. Many different foods can be smoked perfectly, even those that cannot work with a hot smoker such as cheese.
- The ash tray is large enough that you don’t have to empty it often. The fact that you will always find few ashes on the tray is because this is an excellent smoker. Most of the wood is smoked with very little waste.
- This is a great improvement compared to other smoker kits that are difficult to control in terms of smoke and temperature. With the Masterbuilt Cold Smoker, you don’t need to be a chef to prepare a nice cold smoked meal as it’s really easy to use.
Are there any cons?
It’s a pretty straightforward and easy to use unit, so there’s not a whole lot of negatives we could find. Here are a few points to keep in mind though.
- You can only get the amount of smoke you need if you ensure that the wood chips are settled at the bottom. This means you occasionally have to shake the chip bin for the wood chips to remain at the bottom.
- It would be nice if this unit had handles and a stand. It is a bit awkward to move it about without the handles, and you have to stand it on something else as it needs to be raised off the ground. The unit also requires a heavy duty extension cord, otherwise it can trip your circuit.
- A few people have mentioned there can be a bit of smoke leakage from the top lid, but as it produces generous amounts of smoke there’s more than enough to get good results with your food.
Our final verdict
Aside from the few shortcomings, the Masterbuilt Cold Smoker Kit is a great addition to any Masterbuilt smoker owner’s BBQ arsenal. It’s something that should probably have been included with all digital electric smokers in the first place (it’s pretty much necessary if you want to get the full functionality of a smoker) – unfortunately they’ve made it an “optional extra” which is a nice little bonus for them as most BBQ fans will invest in it eventually!
Other than that though it’s pretty good value for money and is a worthwhile investment for those who enjoy their smoked foods – in my opinion you’re missing out if you don’t have it.
The smoking experience is easy with this attachment and it gives you the opportunity to smoke a range of foods that wouldn’t have been possible with a normal hot smoker. It would make a great gift to yourself or for someone else.