View Full Version : Smoke Ring

08-07-2012, 03:00 PM
I see some members use a bit of Charcoal. I assume it is to form a smoke ring.
My question is what kind of Charcoal. Lump or something processed like Kingsford or Royal Oak.
I've tried some lump on two occasions. Got tasty brisket both times... but no smoke ring.

08-07-2012, 04:47 PM
Metronome...I used the Kingsford...it helps a little. I also use alot of wood for smoke....I would rather have too much smoke than not enough!!


08-07-2012, 05:16 PM
Ah BillyBob, then you can violate the number one rule in the SmokinTex manual that states "no more than 8 ounces of wood".
And thanks, I'll try some Kingsford. B4 I became an all-wood griller, I preferred Kingsford.
And as you're in Tennessee, I must ask.... vinegar, mustard or tomato based sauce ?

08-08-2012, 07:15 AM
I like them all.....but my favorite is the tomato based...I use it 95% of the time.


08-09-2012, 07:14 PM
Kingsford here as well. I use it for almost all my smoked meats. 2-4 or 5 briquettes, deending on the length of the smoke.

08-11-2012, 09:53 AM
Thanks guys, perhaps I wasn't using enough. I'll up the quantity next time.

Steven Par
08-14-2012, 06:38 AM
Do you use lit or unlit charcoal? I have tried charcoal and the briquett looks unused after the smoke?????

08-14-2012, 01:32 PM
Unlit, but I have nothing but ash left after a cook.

Steven Par
08-14-2012, 08:58 PM
Do you put the charcoal next to the wood so the wood ignites or does it ignite on its own?...I ahve tryed several times when smoking ribs and the darn thing looks the same as when I put it in at the end of the cook. Running the smoker at 230F


08-15-2012, 07:25 AM
I've always put it in the smoke box on top of smoke chips. I guess I've never tried setting it off to the side not touching the wood to see if it would ignite on it's own. could try putting in a few chips with chunks to see if that helps, or perhaps someone else will jump in.

Steven Par
08-15-2012, 07:32 AM
Bigwalleye, I will give the chips a try.....thanks

Steven Par
08-27-2012, 06:18 AM
Just finished a 12 hour smoke using 6 oz of applewood and three charcoal briquettes. I didn't have any apple wood chips to try out. I packed the charcoal in the middle of the wood chunks so they were touching and they still never burned. just a couple of white corners where they had touched the wood....chips must be the secret to get the charcoal to burn.


09-13-2012, 08:17 AM
I used to get a deep smoke ring when I ran a stick burner and now I never get one but that raises a question. Is the smoke ring more of a visual attribute than a flavor one? I ask that because I really don't miss a smoke ring anymore and my grub is still real tasty!!

09-13-2012, 08:08 PM
I think it's both visual and taste. I like the denser smoke taste on the outside, and will grab for the end ribs off the rack if the wife cuts 'em up. She's on to my tactics, though, and only cuts HER rack on her plate. She knows I won't reach. By the way, did I mention I'm also the chief knife sharpener in the house?

09-14-2012, 09:49 AM
I have seen on various shows about competition BBQ that the presence of a smoke ring has been removed as a judging criteria.

09-14-2012, 08:51 PM
That is not anything I have experienced or heard of....most of the judges look for the ring and then the pull and the the taske.


03-22-2013, 02:43 PM
So being relatively new to a ST (love it) - I read all the past threads on the smoke ring, using some charcoal, etc. Seems to be no real consensus. Some say charcoal works, some say no luck. Hate to revive a topic that has been discussed numerous times already but whether visual or not I am used to seeing one (and showing it off to folks). Do I add charcoal? Do I use my barrell smoker for an hour or few and then the ST for the remainder?

03-23-2013, 07:13 PM
Going from barrell to the ST seems kind of a pain. I say if the final product knocks 'em dead, they won't care about the smoke ring LOL

03-27-2013, 05:52 PM
I see my local small town grocery now stocks lump charcoal, and I've been itching to fire up the smoker again....I sense a cosmic union about to take place.

If the whole briquette isn't burning,try breaking it up. I used to do that, and everything burned, so tried without breaking, and it still all burned, so didn't bother, but if the charcoal isn't burning, might be worth a go.

03-29-2013, 11:30 AM
If the whole briquette is not burning, try moving it around in the smoke box. I've found that mt ST woodbox has hot-spots. Seems to be the nearer to the door, the hotter it is.

On the SR, I truly believe if you did a blind taste test, 9 outta 10 times you'd never know the difference between a product with a SR and one without. It does look nice but (IMO) has no taste effect on the final product. Whatever keeps the Mrs. happy is the name of my game! ;)

05-11-2015, 11:10 AM
I am reviving this old thread as I stumbled across this great article on Smoke Rings and how to achieve them and why we don't get them in our electric smokers.


For what it's worth I smoked a Turkey Breast this weekend and added a Water Pan to the smoker. It did NOT give me even the slightest indication of a pink smoke ring. In fact I felt that it did make the breast taste more moist than without the water pan however I personally felt it tasted LESS smokey.

Verdict.....don't use a water pan in the smoker to try and achieve a smoke ring. My next experiment will be a couple charcoal briquettes.