Propane vs Electric Smoker – Which Type of Smoker is Better?

When you reject using charcoal as fuel then there are only two options left one is Electric Smoker and Another one is Propane Smoker.

Both of them will save you from the fiddle of charcoal. But the question is which one of two is better?

This is what we are going to discuss in this article. We are going to discuss and compare both of them head to head, and check out their pros and cons on the other hand.

With that, we are going to determine which one is better as we will provide you with relevant and sufficient information related to both of them and then decide which one is better.

So, if you are interested then stay tuned with this article till the end if you want to have the best and wise Smoker for those casual gatherings. 

Major Different Between Propane and Electric Smoker:

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Out of the many different types of smoker, gas and electric share the most in common. They are both simple to use and good for modest budgets.

You can find many good models for under $200. As their names suggest, these smokers use different fuel sources to cook your food.

Electricity Or Propane Gas:

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Electric Smokers are handy when it comes to controlling temperature. Yes! They offer amazing temperature control and helps you in having perfectly refined food that you want., with that they also offer you ease of use and feasibility.

But all of this is possible when you have a proper power supply. Electric Smokers are waste when you live in an area that is prone to a power outage. 

Needless to say, when you are using an Electric Smoker then you should be prepared for that as these types of Smokers are not versatile as Gas Smokers as they are prone to work in the cold environment thus it can be difficult to set up an Electric Smoker.

With that, there are more things to worry about them as they need a power outlet for power source so you should set the smoker in a place where a power outlet is easily accessible. 

Now: coming to the Gas Smokers they are found to be far more portable than Electric Smokers as you can easily carry them around and keep them where ever you want.

With that, they are prone to work in higher temperature environments thus they can be extremely versatile. But and yes! There is always a but in such situations. 

Gas Smokers are required to have a good and close inspection while working. You might wonder why?

Because when it comes to temperature control then the preset temperature can get off the path or the settings quickly and fast thus you need to maintain the required temperature by keeping a close look at them. 

And it is said, that some models for Gas Smokers are poorly insulated thus you need to be sure what temperature you want to keep it maintained.

Overall, when it comes to head comparison which we will do in this article they both have some distinct features that make them more usable and reliable. You can’t decide right now which one is better than others. 

Electric Smoker Overview:

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What is Electric Smoker? It is a Smoker that produces heat or collects heat to cook your food with the help of electricity.

These types of SMokers are installed with vents in case you need to control the temperature, but the major role in such types of Smokers is played by the heat and other heating elements installed. 

Having this in mind, you need to have some spare time in your hand to let the heating elements get warmed up before starting cooking.

You should not directly ignite the Smoker and start cooking immediately you should wait for a while and let the heat from electricity sync in with heating elements installed in an Electric Smoker. 

In the end, I want to say that, consider an oven they are similar to them but they cook in a more traditional low and slow process.

And you are getting additional feasibility of adding wood chips to add more flavour of smoked food to your appetite. Moving on, let’s have a look at some pros and cons of Electric Smoker:

Electric Smoker Pros:

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  • Controlling temperature is extremely easy, especially when you buy premium and more advanced units. You can turn the dial and control the temperature and set it to your requirement. But some cheaper models offer preset temperature control settings such as Low, Medium, and High. 
  • This type of Smoker offers you set and forget convenience.
  • When it comes to safety then Electric Smokers are the safest option among the two. As it does not uses any chemicals or gases that are combustible.
  • Suppose you live in an apartment. Due to flammable and risking other people’s lives, you are allowed to keep Electric Smokers in your apartment. This can be an advantage for you.
  • When it comes to cold Smokers then this can be easily converted to that and it is also used to smoke some delicate food items such as Fisheries. With that, you can easily dehydrate any food item because of its lowest temperature settings. 
  • Because of their ease of use, it is perfect for those who have just learned to smoke and want to try out. 

Electric Smoker Cons:

  • When it comes to producing extreme heat then you should not expect that from an Electric Smoker as it generates relatively low heat than a Gas Smoker.
  • You need a power outlet. That can be a disadvantage as you have to place the Electric Smoker in a convenient place where the power outlet is easily accessible.
  • For some people, Smoke Rings are added flavour for their food and this is important somehow. But you will not get that type of service from an Electric Smoker as the wood is burning but not on high temperature thus it won’t release any chemicals eventually there won’t be any Smoke Ring for added flavour.
  • Repairing them is an exhausting job as you can be tired and confused repairing them. Thus it can’t be repaired by anyone you should hand it over to professionals. Coming to that, this method can be expensive due to the complications of the high tech nature of the Smoker.

Propane Smoker Overview:

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Coming to Propane Smokers the majority of the user who use Propane Smokers they use Propane tanks as their primary fuel source and some of them consider using Natural gas as their fuel source.

Because with propane tanks you can have more control and pressure over the heat and temperature and through that, you can achieve as high temperature could go and as low as it could be.

The best part about them is that they reach the highest temperature pretty fast compared to any Electric Smoker. 

With the help of gas Burner, you can easily provide natural fire to your food, and this burner is situated at the bottom of the Smoker and right above the smoker, you are getting a shelve for adding wood chips to get the smokey flavour in your food.

The best Smoker is charcoal and if you want to resemble that taste and feel then gas Smokers are the best option to replicate the feel of a Charcoal Smoker.

They are as close as it can be when it comes to smoking food with added Smokey flavour. 

The most common use of Gas Smokers is in the commercial market as it is used in restaurants and any other commercial place. Though it can’t beat the fan base of Charcoal Smoker lovers it gets the job done efficiently.

Propane Smoker Pros:

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  • You can place Gas Smokers anywhere you want without worrying about the power outlets.
  • When it comes to complications then it is simple to use and if anything breaks down then it won’t take a hassle of time to repair it.
  • The best thing about it is that even when the power is out or you live in a place with power outage then this Smoker will provide you full feature and its complete service.
  • The pricing for Propane Smokers is relatively affordable than any Electric Smokers present in the market. 
  • Coming towards the best result then a survey says that most of the Charcoal Smoker fans are now switching to Propane Smokers as they can relate this type of Smoker to Charcoal Smoker. This feel can’t be achieved with Electric Smokers.

Propane Smoker Cons:

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  • There are some measures that you need to take care of in relatively cheaper variants of Propane Smokers in case of controlling the temperature. Because they tend to become hot fast.
  • When it comes to insulation then Gas Smokers are found not to be well insulated, so, if it is a cold environment outside then for sure it will affect your food and cooking and even when it is windy.
  • Some additional features such as Bluetooth connectivity, Wifi integration, and much more are not present in such Propane Smokers as they are not built with high tech technology. They lean into more of a traditional category. 
  • The biggest disadvantage is that if you have kids around you then you are stupid to use a Gas Smoker because it exerts a high amount of chemical flames and there are combustible gases that can harm other life including yours. And some of the complexes and apartments do not allow you to install a Gas Smoker for preventing any future damages. Thus using a Gas Smoker is always playing with your life and with your loved ones.

Electric Smoker And Propane Smoker Head To Head Comparison:

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When it comes to choosing between an Electric Smoker and a Propane Smoker then all of that decision making comes down to what you prefer the most.

If you are intrigued by the application of an Electric Smoker such as it can perform some delicate smoking techniques and in them, you can easily smoke fish or any food that includes cheese, or you are interested in dehydrating your food like Jerkies then the best option for you would be an Electric Smoker.

Now: coming towards a Propane Smoker, as you know it resembles the taste of a Charcoal Smoker and most of the people would prefer this type of taste.

And you are one of them then you should consider choosing a Propane Smoker. And still, you are uncertain about which one is the best option for you then here are some factors that are in play when it comes to choosing either f them.

Through them, you can easily determine which one to opt for and which not to.


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First, let us discuss the pricing and affordability of both of them. When it comes to Propane Smokers then they are relatively cheap than an Electric Smoker.

As you might have determined that any gas-operated Smoker is affordable thus you need to check for the built quality in case you want to use it frequently.

Now: coming towards the Electric Smoker there are some exceptional variants and models that you can choose which are affordable and has a reasonable price tag on them.

But nowadays there are some advanced integrations included such as Bluetooth connectivity, and for them, they might cost you a little bit extra when compared to any entry-level Electric Smoker.

And now the consumption cost for both of them is different.

Why? You might wonder because electricity and gas rates vary from one place to another thus it is hard to distinguish a specific value for the rate of consumption for both of them.

Ease Of Use:

Coming towards the ease of use then hands down any Electric Smokers are known and popular for their ease of usability.

It is extremely simple once you have set in the temperature that you need and you can even forget about it because it never fluctuates the temperature thus it keeps it maintained.

On the other hand, it does not mean that you need a PhD degree when it comes to operating Propane Smoker. But you will need the precision to watch it over time while it cooks.

As the temperature fluctuates it can easily be increased or decreased, and if you don’t pay enough attention then it might destroy your food. Thus you need to know a thing or two about smoking when you are using a Propane Smoker. 

Taste Of Food:

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When it comes to taste of food in either of two then this topic is extremely debatable.

How? Well, many reviewers have pointed out that Electric Smokers might cook delicious and amazing food. But when it comes to precision and extreme taste then they point their fingers to Charcoal or Gas Smokers.

As it is said, that Electric Smokers can fulfill your requirement of the taste of food that you are expecting from a Smoker.

But if you want a little bit more then you should opt for a Gas or Propane Smokers. 

But there are some forums that favor Electric Smoker over Gas Smokers.

By this, you must determine that every person has their own opinion about everything that is present in this world. And talking about an opinion they have created a complete community of cooking tasty and delicious foods of Electric Smokers.

But either way, all of the fingers point to Gas Smoker for the best tasting Smoker.

If you are a fan of Charcoal Smoker then I’m pretty sure that you will love the taste and resemblance of a Gas or Propane Smoker.

However, if you are looking to smoke more delicate foo like fisheries, or you want to dehydrate any food like jerkies then Electric Smoker is the way to go.

Bad Weather Considerations:

If you are an all-season smoker then your only concern is how well, your preferred smoker will perform in bad or harsh weather.

Because Smoking is a job that can be done all seasons if you have picked the right tool.

With any Electric Smoker, the concern is how you can manage to merge water and Electricity at the same time. If you have figured that out then your problem and concern are solved. 

No! You don’t enter the water in an Electric Smoker and you should not try that what I mean by water is?

What if there are some raindrops then you should be OK but if it’s raining like cats and dogs then you should worry and cover it with a tarp or place it under an open garage door if you have one.

On the other hand when it comes to gas Smoker then this worry is out of the equation. Because worrying about rainy weather is not a concern that you should take when you are using a Gas Smoker.

But I’m not saying that there aren’t any concerns with gas Smokers. Suppose it is a windy day then a Gas Smoker is not well insulated thus that can be your concern. 

But for both of them, there are some concerns that you should look after because not everything is perfect thus you need to check for some certainty before buying.


Propane Smoker

When it comes to reliability then Electric Smokers checks all the boxes such as they are well-constructed, easy to control, easy to use, and extremely reliable. If you have a proper power supply then you can easily smoke food on Electric Smokers. 

On the other hand, Gas Smokers are less reliable than Electric Smokers.

As there are different qualities available in the construction of Gas Smokers thus they can be less reliable and especially when they are poorly constructed or built.

Although if something breaks or something goes wrong with a Gas Smoker then they are extremely easy to fix and repair.

As you can easily purchase their counterparts from the market if something is damaged.


When it comes to deciding which one to choose that might depend on your choice or preference.

Why? Because some people like to have the taste of Charcoal Smokers and because of that they are ready to compromise all the small disadvantages that Gas Smokers comes with.

But if you are living in a complex then you need to make sure that they allow you to have a Gas Smoker as they can be extremely dangerous for you and the people surrounding you. 

Most apartments and complexes do not allow you to have a Gas Smoker in your house.

But if you want usability and control over what you are smoking then the best option for you is getting an Electric Smoker because as I have explained that they are extremely versatile in every aspect of Smoking food. 

Now: it is completely up to you which one you should opt for and which one is best for you.

And this guide will help you determine which one you should buy as there are several models available in either of the Smokers and every model offers you a different set of features thus eventually all comes down to your choice of preference which one you should go for and which one is ideal for you.