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Questions re getting a pellet grill.


keeperovdeflame
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Congrats on your purchase @keeperovdeflame. Good cooking!

 

I used to have a huge hankering for a pellet grill so the local McCabe let me rent a Traeger for the weekend. Wasn't impressed. I just didn't care for the build quality- and that I primarily mean thickness of the metal. Prefer something more substantial. Anyway, when I pull the trigger on one, it will probably be a Yoder (if I don't go for one of their offsets instead).

 

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18 minutes ago, CentralTexBBQ said:

Congrats on your purchase @keeperovdeflame. Good cooking!

 

I used to have a huge hankering for a pellet grill so the local McCabe let me rent a Traeger for the weekend. Wasn't impressed. I just didn't care for the build quality- and that I primarily mean thickness of the metal. Prefer something more substantial. Anyway, when I pull the trigger on one, it will probably be a Yoder (if I don't go for one of their offsets instead).

 

You ought to look at the timberline series, weight, thickness, and hefty construction is why I bought one. The timberline is much stouter than the other models. 

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1 hour ago, keeperovdeflame said:

You ought to look at the timberline series, weight, thickness, and hefty construction is why I bought one. The timberline is much stouter than the other models. 

 

Exactly why I'm considering the Yoder- built like a small truck. This is the baby, it's 277lbs.

 

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The Yoder is an excellent unit.  

 

Owners need to be aware that it takes a lot of pellet burning to get all that "substantial" metal up to temperature.

 

Downside:  Their reputation for high pellet use.

Upside:       They don't have a significant temperature drop when opening for basting and such.  (If you're lookin' you're still cooking'.)

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I've always wanted to try a pellet cooker.  And probably a pit barrel... And maybe an offset.  I don't have the real estate for that many cookers, nor do I think anything would ever replace my komodo kamado.  My current plan (once this covid 19 stuff is behind us) is to buy used and sell used after a few months of playing around. 

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On 5/1/2020 at 1:04 PM, shuley said:

I've always wanted to try a pellet cooker.  And probably a pit barrel... And maybe an offset.  I don't have the real estate for that many cookers, nor do I think anything would ever replace my komodo kamado.  My current plan (once this covid 19 stuff is behind us) is to buy used and sell used after a few months of playing around. 

My first cook on the Traeger was pretty much; prep the chicken, push a button, close the lid, and drink a beer. My spatchcocked chicken cooked in just about an hour flat at 400 dgs.  I did a pan of potatoes which was like cooking in a kitchen oven, just set it on the upper grill rack  and pulled  it out in an hour. I set up the WiFi AP on my phone, which  allows you to read temps in both the pit and from the meat probe. If you set your target meat temp, the grill will send you a notification when your cook is at pulling temp. Almost truly impossible to screw up. Although I am sure I can find a way. I have three grills on my deck now and momma says, NO Mas, and has threatened bodily harm if a new grill, WFO or something like that  should suddenly show up on the deck. Gotta admit she has really allowed me a tremendous freedom, but everything has it's ultimate limits. A used Traeger would probably be a good way to go. This thing is reasonably solid and looks pretty bullet proof. They sell the heating elements and most parts  down in my True Value, not really expensive and only involve  plug and play replacement. You could make an old grill serviceable and up to snuff very easily. I think I am going to do the 24 hr brisket John recommended next week.

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Some grills just have different strengths and are better at somethings than others. The pellet grill makes very easy work of a long low and slow, but I probably won't use it again for chicken, or other quick cooks like fish. Fish at my house lives on the gasser and the kamado gets pizza, and a whole lot of moderate heat general variety cooks. Variety keeps cooking interesting. 

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a charcoal grill is an excellent combo with the pellet grill.  You will find that a pellet grill can do most everything great.  I don’t use my kamado much at all these days but I fire it up once and a while for charcoal flavour.  I may end up losing my kamados at some point and picking up a cheap Weber kettle for the days that I feel like charcoal.  
 

@keeperovdeflame how did you find the flavour?  I was surprised on how well the traeger cooked chicken.  It’s the only way that I cook poultry now.  
 

@shuley honestly, a pellet grill isn’t for everyone, but like @keeperovdeflame mentioned... it really is fool proof.  Keep it clean and it will reward you with worry free cooking and great flavour.  

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16 minutes ago, bosco said:

............. You will find that a pellet grill can do most everything great.

 

 

what about the Zen?  have you figured out a way to do that on a pellet grill yet?  seems to be very important

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I also just got a pellet grill, I went with the Rec-Tec 340 for bringing with me camping but since getting to know it I really enjoy the ease of it, I've cooked Chicken, Ribs, Brisket, Pork Butt  and lots of side dishes and Im really impressed with it and find myself using my Kamado's less and less but I dont plan on getting rid of them, They will still be my go to for High temp cooks 

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10 hours ago, bosco said:

a charcoal grill is an excellent combo with the pellet grill.  You will find that a pellet grill can do most everything great.  I don’t use my kamado much at all these days but I fire it up once and a while for charcoal flavour.  I may end up losing my kamados at some point and picking up a cheap Weber kettle for the days that I feel like charcoal.  
 

@keeperovdeflame how did you find the flavour?  I was surprised on how well the traeger cooked chicken.  It’s the only way that I cook poultry now.  

My spatchcocked chicken came out perfectly cooked and  extremely moist. The only downside for me was the level of smoke taste, which was higher on the Traeger.  I like the smoke on beef and pork, lamb and such  but I really like the clean taste produced in my kamado. Not that the Traeger chicken was not flavorful, because it truly was, but I just prefer the kamado chicken between the two. I did get some "Summer Shandy" blend pellets which are a combination of  Alder, Apple, and Citrus. I will try that on a chicken,  and see how I like it. The chicken I cooked previously was over Winemaker blend pellets which have some hickory, which is a bit strong on chicken. 

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2 hours ago, keeperovdeflame said:

My spatchcocked chicken came out perfectly cooked and  extremely moist. The only downside for me was the level of smoke taste, which was higher on the Traeger.  I like the smoke on beef and pork, lamb and such  but I really like the clean taste produced in my kamado. Not that the Traeger chicken was not flavorful, because it truly was, but I just prefer the kamado chicken between the two. I did get some "Summer Shandy" blend pellets which are a combination of  Alder, Apple, and Citrus. I will try that on a chicken,  and see how I like it. The chicken I cooked previously was over Winemaker blend pellets which have some hickory, which is a bit strong on chicken. 


may I ask how you cooked the chicken.  I can avoid smoke all together on chicken.   Perhaps I can help you tweak your cooking method for spatchcock 

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2 hours ago, keeperovdeflame said:

My spatchcocked chicken came out perfectly cooked and  extremely moist. The only downside for me was the level of smoke taste, which was higher on the Traeger.  I like the smoke on beef and pork, lamb and such  but I really like the clean taste produced in my kamado. Not that the Traeger chicken was not flavorful, because it truly was, but I just prefer the kamado chicken between the two. I did get some "Summer Shandy" blend pellets which are a combination of  Alder, Apple, and Citrus. I will try that on a chicken,  and see how I like it. The chicken I cooked previously was over Winemaker blend pellets which have some hickory, which is a bit strong on chicken. 

If you are cooking chicken at higher temps in a pellet grill, you will not get hardly any smoke flavor. How did you cook your spatchcocked chicken? Chicken is one of my favorites on my TImberline, get with Bosco and he can straighten out your chicken cooks. 

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1 hour ago, retfr8flyr said:

If you are cooking chicken at higher temps in a pellet grill, you will not get hardly any smoke flavor. How did you cook your spatchcocked chicken? Chicken is one of my favorites on my TImberline, get with Bosco and he can straighten out your chicken cooks. 

I cooked my spatchcocked cock at 400 degrees F,  it took almost an hour flat and came out absolutely perfect in terms of doneness. I used the integrated probe and pulled it at 165 in the breast. I also cooked a pan of potatoes, onions, carrots, on the upper rack. Very good but a little too smokey. The blend of pellets I used had some Hickory in it, I am thinking maybe that's the flavor that was too strong for us.

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