12 Cheap Smoker Hacks for Your Summer Cookouts
Categories: Food

12 Cheap Smoker Hacks for Your Summer Cookouts

For penny pinchers, apartment dwellers and, well, everyone else, smoking food at home is now within reach more than ever before. With hacks to transform even gas grills into wood-fire-infusing devices, inexpensive oven and stovetop solutions, plus handheld toys that can manage to smoke ice without melting it, there are so many options out there to choose from. Try out these 12 recipes before you splurge on the swoon-worthy smokers out there to get a taste of the fiery flavor without wrecking your budget.

1. Smoked Peaches and Cream Pops: Taking the extra step to smoke peaches before blending them with simple syrup and cream pays off big time in the flavor department. Unexpected and totally delicious, these pops are sure to disappear quickly. (via A Little Saffron)

2. Hazy Sunset: Smoked ice sounds like a major oxymoron — it melts, then is re-frozen into savory cubes — but it’s the key to taking this tiki-inspired, pineapple-rum cocktail to the next level. (via Serious Eats)

3. Oven-Smoked Ribs: Now you can queue up the fiery, summery flavors of spice-rubbed ribs no matter the time of year. Aluminum foil and a roasting pan are the only tools you need to hack the effects of a pricey smoker. (via The New York Times)

4. Smoked Tri Tip: If there happen to be any leftovers of this super tender tri tip, transform thin slices into sandwiches the next day. (via Just One Cookbook)

5. Applewood Smoked Bourbon Chicken: Removing the skin from the chicken allows the tangy, sweet bourbon marinade to really penetrate the bird. Not only that, but you’ll hardly have to worry about flares as it cooks on the grill. (via From Calculus to Cupcakes)

6. Smoked Spicy Bourbon Maple Almonds: Be warned: It’ll be hard to go back to the store-bought smoked almonds after you munch on a handful of these sweet, smokey and spicy nuts. (via 10th Kitchen)

7. Smoked Tequila Ice: Since they don’t give off any heat, handheld smokers are awesome for infusing flavor in things — such as this kicky frozen cocktail — that you want to serve ice-cold. (via Swooned Magazine)

8. Smoked Beer Can Chicken: Brined and then coated in a peppery spice rub, this chicken has a whole lot of love put into it before it’s set atop wood chips on the grill. The decadent bird that results just may be the juiciest you’ve ever tasted. (via Tastes Spicy)

9. Smoked Tomato Soup and Corn-Tomato Salad: Move over, gazpacho — smoked tomatoes and a side of sweet corn-tomato salad transform this creamy, cold-weather staple into THE perfectly summery starter or light meal. (via Wild Greens and Sardines)

10. Smokestacks Chicken Wings: You have a few different methods to choose from when cooking these saucy wings. These are so finger-lickin’ good that the old Buffalo standbys may officially get the boot. (via Saveur)

11. Green-Tea-Smoked Duck: A blend of rice, tea leaves and assorted seasonings takes the place of wood to smoke this irresistible, crispy-skinned duck. (via Burp! Appetit)

12. Oven-Smoked Pastrami: It’ll take some planning (the brisket needs to brine for a week), but making your own deli-worthy lunch meat at home is totally doable… and even more delicious. (via Chow)

Have you ever experimented with smoking foods at home? Share your experiences and any hacks you’ve come up with in the comments!