How to properly season a new BBQ smoker for improved flavor and longevity

Are you a BBQ lover looking for the best way to season your brand new smoker for the ultimate flavor and lasting durability? Here’s the perfect guide to help you do just that.

You’ll learn how to properly season your BBQ smoker – from pre-seasoning to post-seasoning tips – so that you can experience juicier, smokier, and more flavorful dishes every time!


Welcome to the complete guide on how to properly season a new BBQ smoker for improved flavor and longevity. Seasoning an outdoor cooking tool is an essential process and will help ensure your smoker functions optimally for many years to come. Fortunately, seasoned smokers not only provide you with the best flavor, but also require less maintenance and cleaning over the years, saving you time and money in the long run.

The process of seasoning your BBQ smoker consists of several steps or parts. This guide will cover each step in detail while providing helpful tips throughout each stage of the process to ensure your smoker is well-seasoned and ready for use when grilling day rolls around. We suggest taking some notes as you go along so you don’t forget any important details or instructions found throughout this guide. So let’s get started!

Explanation of why it’s important to season a new BBQ smoker

A BBQ smoker is a great way to infuse smoke and flavor into your favorite meats and make delicious dishes for your family and friends. But, in order to achieve optimum performance, the smoker must be properly seasoned before the first use. Seasoning a new BBQ smoker serves to condition the unit against rust and long-term wear while also adding flavor complexity to future dishes through the natural seasoning that builds up on the inside surfaces of the barbecue over time.

By following a few simple steps, you can easily season your new BBQ smoker with ease and maximize its potential performance. First, you should allow any residual manufacturing oils or coatings on your smoker to burn off in a process known as “burning out” or ‘curing’. This involves applying heat (generally by adjusting all dampers open completely), allowing all finishes to burn off, then allowing it to cool completely before proceeding with seasoning.

Once cooled, you should scrub down all surfaces with warm soapy water and rinse thoroughly before finally coating the entire interior of the unit (except for cold smoking shelves) with oil – cooking oil or vegetable oil is ideal – using a clean cloth or paper towel making sure there are no missed spots. This will create a protective layer that helps seal out moisture from food ingredients and prevent rust over time by preventing water vapors from condensing on cooler metal surfaces inside.”

Finally, let your freshly seasoned BBQ smoker sit overnight at room temperature before using it on any recipes or meals!

Preparing the Smoker

Before actually seasoning the smoker, it is important to prepare the smoker for its new function. This starts with a thorough cleaning of the barrel and lid. The exterior and interior should be scrubbed or brushed clean to remove any dust, dirt, or other residue from the manufacturing process. Then, using a shop cloth or paper towel and a mild soap like dish washing liquid applied directly onto the rag rather than spraying it into the smoker, gradually scrub down both surfaces of smoker’s barrel and lid until they are completely clean. Allow to dry completely.

Once dried, oil should be lightly rubbed into all of the metal surfaces on both the inside and outside of your smoker’s barrel to provide protection against rusting. To do this evenly spread vegetable oil on a paper towel and rub along all surfaces where it will be in contact with heat or smoke while maintaining safety precautions with heated parts by either wearing full hand protection before touching them or allowing them to cool adequately first. In order for oil to properly coat surfaces that have already been heavily heated previously (like those inside a smoker), it is best if temperatures remain between 225-275°F for two hours at least, however overnight tends to be best as this allows sufficient time for adequate heat transfer as well as letting oil seep through into all crevices beneath surface coatings. If these precautions are not observed properly then there can be significant damage over time due either seasonings burning onto surface areas and causing sticking problems later downline or from trapped oils causing a build-up in certain parts which will increase maintenance costs over time.

Note: Make sure that you are wearing proper clothing such as long sleeves/legs, gloves and protective eyewear when handling high temperatures materials like those found in BBQ smokers.

Cleaning the smoker

Ensuring that your smoker is clean is an essential part of the seasoning process and will help guarantee a better flavor for your grilled dishes. To start, remove the ash from the bottom of the smoker.

Next, scrape off any grease or food particles from the cooking surfaces with a putty knife or wire brush and rinse with warm, soapy water. Be sure to include handles and knobs in the cleaning process — dirt and grime can accumulate here too.

Once the surfaces are scrubbed clean and dry, you’re ready to season your smoker!

Assembling the smoker

Once you have your BBQ smoker, there are a few steps that must be completed in order to season it properly and make sure it is ready to use.

Before assembling your BBQ smoker, you should make sure all the pieces are accounted for and that they are properly assembled. Make sure any screws or other fastening devices have been tightened securely before using the smoker. Now, you can begin the process of seasoning your new BBQ smoker.

The first step is to prepare a low fire in the firebox of the smoker. It is best to use charcoal briquettes or lump charcoal for this purpose since they produce a more controlled and Even heat for seasoning purposes. You may need to adjust existing vents or add new ones at this point in order to obtain an even temperature throughout the cooking chamber of your new barbecue smoker once it has been fully assembled.

Once you have prepared an even burn in the firebox, assemble the rest of your smoker according instructions provided in its manual. Special attention needs to be paid if adding any additional parts like shelves, etc., since incorrect assembly can ruin your new unit’s performance or cause damage that could be difficult -or even dangerous- to repair later on during normal use.

Choosing the right type of fuel

For better flavor and prolonged use of your BBQ smoker, you must choose the right type of fuel. The two primary sources of fuel for smoking food are charcoal and wood. Many pitmasters prefer the taste and ease of use that comes with burning charcoal in the smoker. However, charcoal can be difficult to control and adjust during food smoking and lacks the intense, smoky flavor offered by wood.

Wood is an excellent choice for smokers, as it provides a wide variety of flavors you can apply to your food. Maple, oak, hickory, cherry, and apple woods are popular choices among experienced barbecue chefs because they have different flavor profiles that work well with various types of meet.

No matter which fuel source you select for your smoking adventure, following proper seasoning steps is essential for a successful outcome.

III. Seasoning the Smoker

Seasoning a smoker is an essential process to ensure it not only provides delicious meals, but also lasts for years to come. This part of the guide will explain the various steps necessary to properly season a smoker and get great results.

The first step is to run the smoker without any food in it in order to burn off the factory-applied protective coatings. This can typically be done by turning up the temperature until it registers around 200-250 degrees Fahrenheit and leaving it running for an hour or so. While running, check any seams or gaps in the smoker and use heat-proof silicone caulk or high-temperature gasket maker as needed, then let cool completely before proceeding.

Next, coat or spray all of the inner surfaces with a thin layer of cooking oil (like vegetable or canola oil) and let that absorb into everything overnight. The next day, turn up the heat again until you reach 250 degrees Fahrenheit (do not exceed this temperature) and leave running for 2 hours before turning off and letting cool completely again. After seasoning has been complete, you should thoroughly clean any surface that came into contact with oil before use. This will ensure that you get superior flavor from your new smoker for many years!

Applying cooking oil to the smoker

Proper seasoning of your new smoker is essential for ensuring optimal flavor and maximum longevity. Seasoning also helps to fill in any imperfections in the metal, such as small holes or weak points. Here we take a closer look at how to season a smoker with cooking oil.

Before you begin, make sure that your smoker is completely cool and free of debris and dust. Once everything is clean and dry, start by using a paper towel to spread the cooking oil evenly over the entire interior surface of your smoker. Use one or two tablespoons per square foot of interior space, taking special care to apply more generously around the air intake and exhaust ports as well as any other openings or crevices.

When applying vegetable oil to the smoking chamber, use long strokes in order to avoid creating too much heat with friction between the paper towel and metal surface. Once you’re done seasoning with vegetable oil, you can move on to using other oils like bacon fat or lard for additional flavor protection in high-heat areas like the firebox or charring grate areas inside your grill.

It’s also important at this point to give special attention to any pitting on the metal since this could become a weak spot on an already vulnerable surface if left unseasoned. After applying oil liberally all over the surfaces, ignite either wood chips recommended by manufacturer placed inside a burner designed for that purpose if it has one; otherwise use charcoal briquettes inside an oven tray lined with heavy-duty aluminum foil on each side for easy dumping once done smoking outdoors if not already provided on certain models (charcoal BBQ smokers).

Heating the smoker to a high temperature

Now that you have assembled your smoker, it’s time to season it so that the interior is not covered with an oily residue. To properly season your smoker, you must first heat it up to a high temperature. This serves a few purposes: it burns off any residue or previous smoke flavor from cooking, forms a protective barrier against smoke from being absorbed into the metal, and literally “seasons” or flavors the interior of the smoker with oil and heat.

To begin heating your smoker, close all air vents on both the lid and firebox to increase air circulation in the interior of your smoker. Then start a charcoal fire using hardwood such as oak, hickory, mesquite or pecan. Place several handfuls of wet hardwood chips directly onto the coals. As these chips ignite they will emit a thin plume of white smoke which should burn off within 10-15 minutes.

The internal temperature should be 500° Fahrenheit (260°C). Continue stoking fire until standard temperature is reached then maintain this temperature for at least 1 hour. Monitor and adjust vents as needed for proper airflow and temperature maintenance throughout this process; too much oxygen could cause excessive heat build-up which can damage your smoker!

Maintaining the high temperature for a certain period of time

In order to properly season a new BBQ smoker, it is important to maintain a higher temperature for an extended period of time. This process is known as “burning off,” and serves to both protect the smoker from rust and improve the flavor profile. Before you begin this process, ensure your smoker is clean and free from any grease or residue that could create a fire hazard.

Start by preheating your smoker to approximately 300°F/150°C for at least four hours. During this time, move the wood chips around and check the inside of the smoker for any build up or residue. If there are any areas with excess buildup, use a stainless steel brush or scraper to remove it and then reheat those areas again.

After four hours, turn up your smoker’s temperature to 400°F/200°C for another four hours while continuing to move the wood chips around in different areas of your smoker. At this temperature, all grimes should burn off without leaving any residue behind – if they do not, continue increasing the temperature in 25-degree increments until bubbles begin to appear in order to break down oils and other more stubborn residues. Always leave enough space between each flake of wood where they won’t be burnt away before they are smoked properly during cooking.

Once smoking has ceased, lower the temperature back down to 300°F/150°C and continue heating up your smoker for another hour before turning off completely – at this point your BBQ Smoker should be adequately seasoned for optimal performance and flavor preservation! To ensure that it remains properly seasoned throughout its lifetime of use, regular maintenance is key; make sure you are regularly wiping down its interior walls with an oiled rag as often as possible!

Allowing the smoker to cool down

After the seasoning process is complete, it’s important to allow the smoker to cool down in a uniform temperature. To avoid warping or damage to the smoker, do not use excessive heat when cooling down the appliance. Before opening the vents and door, turn off all burners and wait for 30-45 minutes until the internal temperature has dropped below 250°F. During this time, you may open the primary vents to expel any residual smoke or fumes that have collected inside.

After your smoker has cooled, close all vents and leave a small window of ventilation in order to ensure proper smoking temperatures are maintained in future cooking sessions.


Seasoning your new BBQ smoker is an important step in ensuring that it gives you the best results. Sealing the metal parts of your smoker will protect them against rust and corrosion while also providing a non-stick cooking surface.

Do remember that you need to season your BBQ smoker every few months and you can use oil-based or dry rub seasoning for this purpose. Additionally, it is important to observe proper maintenance techniques so that your BBQ smoker will last longer and produce better-tasting food.

With the right advice and techniques, you will be able to enjoy delicious smoked meals for years to come.

Recap of the main points covered in the guide

The main points of this guide include information about how to properly season a new BBQ smoker for improved flavor and longevity. In order to maximize the performance of the smoker, a few essential steps should be taken before usage.

Firstly, it’s important to ensure that all parts are properly clean and free of any dirt or residue; depending on the model this may require more than just a simple rinse. Next, it is necessary to apply oil or grease to all surfaces in order to create an even coating; this helps prevent moisture loss and will ensure your smoker has a longer lifespan. Finally, once everything is ready it is time start the burn-in process; use low temperatures and desired wood chips or chunks in order to create your own unique flavor profile that reflects your personal taste.

Following these steps will help promote enhanced performance, improved flavor profiles and an extended lifespan for your BBQ smoker!

See Also-

Leave a Comment