How to Use a Smoker Box on a Gas Grill – Full Guide With 7 Tips

Modern lifestyles have many of us using gas grills and we cannot complain about that because we can now cook more conveniently and faster.

However, you may find yourself wanting to smoke your chicken or ribs at times. This can be done perfectly using a smoker but if you do not have one, you can actually use a smoker box on your gas grill to do the same.

Now, you want to keep in mind that your gas grill is not designed to smoke foods. For one, the gaps around the lid make it possible for smoke and heat to escape.

Of course, your food will still be good, just not the same as smoker cooked food. By following the following steps, you can be able to smoke your steak on a gas grill.

What You Need Step By Step

  • Cedar planks
  • Smoker box
  • Smoking woods

Step 1

The first step involves lighting your gas burner to medium heat. You want to use the burner on the far left of your grill.

This would also be the perfect time to insert a digital thermometer and close the lid if using one. You want your cooking temperature to have a cooking range of between 225°F – 250°F.

Read More: Outdoor charcoal barbecue grill

Step 2

It will take some time for your grill to get to the desired temperature, so give it time to preheat. If the temperature overshoots and exceeds what you need, turn it down using the control knob.

If you realize that your grill’s temperature is still lower that what you need after 20 minutes, turn the dial up.

You may want to turn on more burners if you have them if you have trouble getting to the desired temperature.

Step 3

Take your smoker box and place it as close as possible to the source of heat. We would advise to place it directly opposite the burner on your grill.

Step 4

As soon as your grill is preheated, you want to add your wood. You want to put dry wood chips in. Most people often soak their wood chips in water a few minutes prior to cooking.

This stops the wood chips from catching fire and burning. Ensure that you use a pair of high heat gloves or a pair of tongs to take out your grill grates when placing your wood.

This is because your grill will be too hot to touch by hand at this point.

Step 5

Once you have placed your wood chips or pellets in your grill crate, you want to close the grill’s lid and allow the smoker box to heat up.

It has to be warm enough to begin emitting smoke. This will be the definite sign to tell you that you can now place your food on the grill.

You want to keep in mind that smoker boxes do not have openings at the bottom. This means that the wood chips will be safe from catching fire.

You can use damp wood chips, but they will take longer to create smoke so you may want to use dry ones if you are in a hurry.

Step 6

It is now time to get smoking. You can finally place your food on the grates. It is important to remember that the food smoking process will take quite a bit of time particularly because it is done under fixed low temperatures.

This is why you cannot place your food directly above the burner.

Step 7

Place your food away from the grill on the opposite side. Close the lid and do not be tempted to open it to check if the food is done.

Monitor your grill’s temperature and adjust accordingly until your food is cooked.

Factors to Consider Before Purchasing a Smoker Box for your Gas Grill

Clearly, a smoker box plays an important role when it comes to smoking food. Although smoker boxes are simple and straightforward, there are still a few things you need to look out for prior to purchasing one.

Here are some of the features you need to consider if you are looking to buy a smoker box.

1. Smoker Box Size

Smoker boxes come in different sizes. As such, you want to pick one that will fit your grill. Now, we do not know the size of your grill so we are not in a position to recommend the smoker box size you should get.

However, you can measure your grill and use the dimensions to pick a smoker box. Generally, V-shaped smoker boxes work well for larger grills so you may want to start there.

2. Non-Stick Covering

We are almost certain that no one would want to spend a good amount of their time scrubbing out burnt wooden chips from their smoker box.

If you are one such person, you may want to consider getting a smoker box with non-stick coating. This will allow you to simply wipe off the ash whenever you want to clean your smoker box.

The non-stick coating will also come in handy to safeguard your smoker box from rusting when exposed to moisture.

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3. Lid Design

You also want to consider the design of your smoker box lid unless you intend to buy one of the more expensive options.

The lid should have an easy opening process that allows you to refill the box with wood chips as requires. It should also close properly to prevent the release of too much smoke.


You should not suppress your love or craving for smoked foods just because you do not own a smoker.

As you can see, it is possible to smoke using a gas grill and the process is not as complex as you may have thought.

We would advise you to get everything you need ready so that you can concentrate on setting up.

Ensure that you have your food, sauces, pellets, and smoking wood ready before setting up. Finally, you want to have ample gas supply.

The last thing you want is to run out of fuel in the middle of smoking those ribs you have been craving for days.

About Sebastian Hoffmann

I'm Sebastian Hoffmann, and I'm a chef. I live in Fulton, New York. And I like to cook using all kinds of kitchen utensils and food items. I keep discussing new cookware and recipes so you can benefit from my experience. I discuss all cooking utensils, indoor and outdoor grills, and appliances I use. I would also like to experiment with what kind of things would be delicious to use in cooking. If you have a strong desire to know about these and are a food lover, you have come to the right platform. Stay with us. Thanks.

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