Best Drum Smokers in 2024- Top 10 Recommended by Experts

Best Drum Smokers: Top 10 Recommended by Experts

Dreaming about that pit master competition? Or looking forward to getting into the field of grilling and barbequing?

Well, guess what, in both cases, you will need perfect companionship; a right tool that will set you on the right track.

Having a drum smoker will make your smoking sessions more fun and hassle-free. And your food will have a mouthwatering taste that will not only make you proud but satisfy your guests as well.

So, we are presenting some of the best drum smokers to get you started. It can be hard to choose at times, we understand. But you have nothing to fret about anymore. You can easily choose one now, according to your preferences.







Dimensions (in)

Weight (lb)



Classic Pit BarrelClassic Pit Barrel



21 x 21 x 31.1



EasyGoProducts Big Bad BarrelEasyGoProducts Big Bad Barrel



20.2 x 18.2 x 20.2



Oklahoma Joe's 19202099Oklahoma Joe's 19202099



40 x 28.8 x 48



Gateway Barbecue Drum SmokerGateway Barbecue Drum Smoker

55 gallons


28 x 28 x 43



Weber 711001Weber 711001



31.4 x 14.8 x 14.8



Masterbuilt 20060416Masterbuilt 20060416



19.1 x 21.6 x 31.5



Char-Broil BulletChar-Broil Bullet



25.4 x 24.8 x 42.8



Realcook VerticalRealcook Vertical



22 x 17 x 35



Sougem Charcoal SmokerSougem Charcoal Smoker



14.5 x 15 x 36



Cuisinart VerticalCuisinart Vertical





Benefits of Drum Smoker

Before you decide to purchase something, it is necessary to know how they might prove beneficial to you. Well, don’t worry, drum smokers have multiple advantages worth mentioning.

First of all, it's straightforward to use. You can comfortably assemble it and maintain the temperature on it. Plus, these products are often multifunctional. You can use them as pits, grills, or smokers!

If you can't afford to buy them, you can just build one. You can see videos or follow instructions on how to make a barrel smoker. And before you know it, you will start your barbeque journey!

Is a Drum Smoker Better than Other Smokers?

With so many options out there, it's essential to know what sets your choices apart. In this case, before purchasing, you need to know how the drum smokers are better than their competitors because we can reassure you that they are.

• Consistency and Reliability

Of course, if you are a professional, you can ace grilling sessions using any equipment. But, consistency and reliability are essential to both amateurs and pros alike.

That's something this equipment can thoroughly offer you, unlike its counterparts. Even if you build a DIY ugly drum smoker, you would still be able to count on it.

• Time Saver

Drum smokers can save a lot of time. You don't have to maintain the temperature throughout the entire session or nurse it; you can set it up to start and just leave it until it's done.

That's it. You can take a walk around, talk to your friends, or even just forget about the barbeque.

• Package Includes Everything

What’s more, a lot of brands offer these smokers with the entire package. That includes everything that you would need for the perfect smoking session. You don’t have to worry or think about getting extra tools or spending extra bucks. It’s affordable and uncomplicated. So, why wait any further!

Best Barrel/Drum Smoker Reviews

With tons of barrel and ugly drum smoker reviews out there, selecting the right one can get quite stressful. But worry not, we are providing you with the details that will make choosing a lot easier for you!

Are you a beginner looking for an easy-to-use yet affordable product? Or are you a pro looking for one that gives consistent and repeatable results? Well, in both cases, you are in luck. Because we have got the best barrel smoker for you. Sounds dreamy, doesn’t it?

Everything that you need for that perfect barbeque session is included right here. It has several stainless steel hooks to conveniently hang the meat, a wooden hook remover, and a standard grate with plenty of space. What's more, it even comes with a coal basket that has the ideal size for the right density of charcoal.

Classic Pit BarrelClassic Pit Barrel

You can’t believe how effortless it is to use this product. All you need to do is follow some instructions to set it up. And there you go. Yes, you will not have to add wood chunks or chips or wait for the temperature to stabilize - everything will be taken care of on its own. 

It has a lot of benefits worth dwelling on. This can make your meal ready in a shorter time than its competitors. Also, it is low-maintenance with high durability. So, it will last longer, and you will have to clean up less.

What's more, since it cooks evenly, you can try versatile recipes with this, which can include both grilling and slow cooking.

However, you have to be consistent with the amount of fuel that you use. With a little more or less amount of charcoal, the temperature will hardly stay even. Also, there is not enough barrel depth for your long ribs. But these are just things that you need to keep in mind.


  • Full package of everything needed for barbequing
  • Easy to use
  • Cooks in a short time with even temperature
  • Low maintenance
  • Long-lasting and versatile


  • Temperature changes with different amounts of charcoal
  • Less barrel depth

One couldn't possibly think of a more perfect name for this product. Yes, that's right, you can't get enough of its multi-functionality! This 5-in-1 barrel will astound you with its resourcefulness. Not just that, it offers other amazing features as well that you will undoubtedly love.

This can be used in many different ways. You can set it down as a table, or a fire pit. It can be turned into a barbeque pit as well with adjustable temperature. And you won’t even have to worry about having your kid around it; because you can adjust the barrel height for child safety.

EasyGoProducts Big Bad BarrelEasyGoProducts Big Bad Barrel

What’s more, it could be the perfect grill smoker because you get to hang the meat and cook.

Unlike your other options, this one is easily portable. It can be dismantled since it is built with two pieces. So you can carry it in a car instead of a truck, for those perfect picnics and trips. Plus, it has extra padding on its body, so you will not have to worry about any damage being done.

There is no need to worry about purchasing extra materials because this comes with everything that you need. One stainless steel hook, three utensils, an independent charcoal pit, and a standard stainless steel grilling rack, are all a part of it.

Also, you get consistent adjustable temperature throughout the barrel. So you can expect your meal to cook evenly.

If you aren't very good at diagrams and would instead prefer instructions, then you should keep that in mind before making the purchase. This equipment comes with a diagram that speaks for itself. Also, you may have to use a little more charcoal on this than usual. But doesn't everything good come with a price?


  • 5-in-1 multi-functionality
  • Easily portable
  • A standard package that comes with every tool needed
  • Consistent temperature throughout the barrel
  • Comes with extra padding


  • Comes with a diagram instead of instructions
  • Requires more fuel than usual

Don’t we all like products that will last us a lifetime? Well, with this, you will be getting just that. You will not have to face the trouble of changing your equipment from time to time. But that is not the only feature that it has to offer you!

Get ready to witness an unbelievable performance! It provides a unique airflow system that lets you have consistent control over the smoking temperatures. So you can prepare your meal slow or fast; however, you would like to.

Oklahoma Joe's 19202099Oklahoma Joe's 19202099

It comes with a large cooking surface and sufficient fuel capacity. Hence, you can grill as many meats as you want in one go. Also, you get a cooking grate, three meat hangers, nine hooks, and a heat diffuser for your desirable customization when smoking with it. This provides the best barrel grill.

With this, you will not have to worry about the cleanup. You will get a big ash pan, porcelain-enameled tools, and a drain cap that will help you be mess-free. What's more, it even consists of large, wagon-style wheels for maximum mobility and smooth trailer loading.

However, you don’t get a charcoal pit and a hook remover with this, so you will have to manage those on your own. And since the entire barrel body is intact, you cannot separate the pieces to carry it. It can only be carried using trucks or large vehicles. So, make your decision after considering all the factors.


  • Long-lasting high-gauge steel construction
  • Unique airflow system
  • Comes with a large cooking space and fuel capacity
  • Effortlessly customizable
  • Easy cleanup with its provided tools


  • Extra tools are needed to get started
  • Hardly portable

Looking for a simple yet high capacity drum smoker? Then you have come to the right place! With a capacity of 55 gallons and a matte black finish, you will love how much it can hold and also how it looks. It is a fantastic barrel smoker for sale.

This product is specially designed to maximize the flavor, moisture, and tenderness of the barbeque. If you cook between the temperatures 250-325 degrees, then the vaporization will be maximized. This will present such a unique grill flavor that is not found in its competitors.

Gateway Barbecue Drum SmokerGateway Barbecue Drum Smoker

But that does not mean you can't reach higher temperatures with it. You can reach up to 1000 degrees with this. This means you can cook hot and fast using this tool. What's more, all this comes at a low price with maximized user-friendliness! You will find this very smooth to use, whether you are a beginner or a pro.

Furthermore, it comes with three cooking levels and a plated-steel cooking grate. For help, you will get a user guide, removable caster wheel kit, steel handles. Air adjusting exhaust and intake pipes, thermometer, and a removable and high-capacity fire basket will also be available.

However, some combustible by-products will be produced when using this equipment. These products contain chemicals that can cause cancer, birth defects, and other kinds of harm. Moreover, they do not come with several tools, such as hooks, etc. So you will have to get a hold on those extra materials all by yourself.


  • Capacity of 55 gallons
  • Designed to maximize the flavor, moisture, and tenderness
  • Very high temperatures can be reached
  • Affordable
  • User-friendly and contains some necessary tools


  • Gives off harmful combustible by-products
  • Does not contain some necessary equipment

Best Bullet Smoker Reviews: These types of barrel smoker we can say as a bullet smoker. But there are little differences between the bullet and the barrel. 

While barrel smokers can quickly be built at home, we can't say the same about bullet smokers. Hence, you will have to be extra cautious when picking the right one. With the right tool, you can go a long way!

Craving for some delicious steak but not willing to go through the hassle of cooking? What if you find a product that will look after your cravings without any sort of trouble? Because now, the best bullet smoker is readily available for you!

This bullet smoker has some top-notch characteristics that will make your grilling experience enjoyable. In fact, with this, you get two plated-steel cooking grates. So you won't have to be confused about which piece of meat to grill first, because you can cook them both at once! They will cook evenly and tenderly together.

Weber 711001Weber 711001

Moreover, you get a built-in lid thermometer with it. That's right; this silicone grommet can help you monitor the internal temperature of the smoker. This is also very easy to control. 

All you have to do is adjust the dampers, and you are all set. You can change according to the heat level and your cooking schedule for that perfect meal!

What's more, you get a porcelain-enameled lid, bowl, legs, and center section that retain heat. Not just that, they are also rust-resistant, so you can expect your tool to last long. Furthermore, the middle part also contains a fuel door that comes off comfortably. So you can add charcoal and wood easily while cooking.

You will need to be a tad careful around this when smoking. That is because this contains nickel, carbon monoxide, and soot. All of these chemicals are known to cause cancer and birth defects. Furthermore, this may not hold temperature well, so you will have to make a little more adjustments than usual.


  • Two plated steel cooking grates
  • Built-in thermometer
  • Easy to adjust the temperature
  • Porcelain-enameled bowl, lid, legs, and center section
  • Easy-come-off fuel door


  • Contains nickel, soot and carbon monoxide
  • Doesn’t hold temperature very well

Looking for equipment that is perfect for backyard grilling, tailgate parties and camping all at once? Then you are looking at the right one! Whether you are smoking food at home or on-the-go, this product makes it simple. But that's not all; it also gives your meal a mouthwatering taste without any struggle at all.

Although it's a little and handy smoker, it does have a lot of cooking space. That is, you get 395.4 sq inches of area. Yes, with this, you can smoke large pieces of meat without having to create a large room to store it.

Masterbuilt 20060416Masterbuilt 20060416

What's more, you get two porcelain-coated smoking racks. So, you can smoke two of your favorite chunks of meat, all at once!

It comes with the right tools to give you a commendable grilling session. You can easily get to your desirable hotness with this. Also, you can get even accurate measurements of the temperature through its built-in lid thermometer. Moreover, it has a front-access door, which makes adding fuel easy.

However, the smoking racks aren't its only porcelain-coated components. The charcoal pan and the water bowl are on the list, as well. So you can stay tension-free about getting rust on your material because it will stay far from such damage.

You may complain about how small and shallow the pan and the bowl are. As it is overall a small smoker, we can’t expect its parts to be that big. Also, it has no damper below the coal pan. You will only get a damper on the lid. But it will make a great smoker if you are not a regular user.


  • 395.4 sq inches of cooking space
  • Two porcelain-coated cooking racks
  • Built-in lid thermometer
  • Front-access door
  • Porcelain-coated charcoal pan and water bowl 


  • Small and shallow charcoal pan and water bowl
  • No damper below coal pan

This is one product that will never disappoint. You cannot possibly go wrong with this because it offers everything, starting from a sturdy build to a large cooking space. We can already tell that this equipment will never fail to amaze you. So, what are you waiting for?

First of all, this has a durable construction. It is fully coated with porcelain on top of steel - starting from the body to the additional cooking components. It has two porcelain-coated grates that are 570 sq inches big.

Char-Broil BulletChar-Broil Bullet

Hence, it can stand up to rust, while hoarding large chunks of meat. You won't have to look for a replacement for a long time. Durability that comes with palatable flavors sounds delightful, no? Because this product does exactly that. 

It has an innovative airflow control system that maintains the internal heat very well. What's more, it even has an easily accessible fire access door, which will enable you to manage your smoke flow. Infuse these two factors, and you get a mouthwatering taste.

But no one wants a mess by the end of the day, right? Although the mess is inevitable when cooking, you can get rid of it quite effortlessly with this. It has a removable ash pan which collects ash throughout the entire time. And you can easily monitor the temperature too, with its lid-mounted gauge.

However, this bad boy is not well insulated, so be careful when cooking. Smoke may leak as well, giving you an unpleasant experience if you hate smoke. But, with a few precautions, this will surely come out great.


  • Durable
  • Two cooking grates - 570 sq inches
  • Innovative airflow control system
  • Easily accessible fire door
  • Removable large ash pan


  • Not well insulated
  • Smoke may leak

Often, the task of assembling smokers before starting to grill can be quite stressful. Not all product has an easy-to-assemble system. But what if you do get one that is effortless to build and comfortable to use? Because this tool has these exact benefits. It has a two-layer design that you can easily take apart.

That is suitable for both transporting it and assembling it. You just have to follow a few steps to get started. And don't worry, you can easily carry it in your vehicle. What's more, it even provides more stability with its latch-locking system.

Realcook VerticalRealcook Vertical

You will be glad to know that this product is multifunctional. It can be used for both hot and cold smoking. You can cook in different ways with it - smoke, grill, steam, and bake, braise, or roast, you name it. And its large cooking room with two grids makes all this effortless.

Moreover, it has a built-in thermometer for accurate monitoring and adjustable air supply on lid for temperature control. But it is also as stable as it can get. It has a porcelain-enameled water pan and charcoal pan with heat-resistant bakelite handles. Also, you get extra strong legs with it, so nothing can go wrong.

If you are a fan of hanging meat and smoking, then you need to get some extra tools. Because it does not come with hooks, you will also need to be a little more careful with it because it has two access doors, and both of them have gaps. So the heat escapes from time to time.


  • Two-layer design and latch-locking system
  • Multifunctional
  • Adjustable air supply
  • Built-in thermometer
  • Porcelain-enameled water pan and charcoal pan with heat-resistant bakelite handles


  • It doesn’t come with hooks
  • Heat escapes from the gaps of both the access doors 

We all tend to enjoy picnics with our families on vacation. And this is just the right tool to accompany you. It is a perfect 14-inch charcoal smoker for get-togethers. Whether you want to barbecue during winter or summer doesn't make a difference. Because you can rely on it throughout the year.

You will not have to worry about it peeling because it has a porcelain-enameled surface, lid, and bowl. This guarantees long-term use. If you do face any sort of trouble with this and would like to return it, then you can easily do so. They have great exchange policies for your convenience.

Sougem Charcoal SmokerSougem Charcoal Smoker

What’s more, it comes with two grates. So you can cook two large items at the same time. But that's not all. It comes with six hooks, a smoking rack, five vents, a water pan, a charcoal pan, and a dust cover. The water bowl even adds extra steam to moisturize the meat. 

So technically, you are getting everything that you need to start grilling. You can easily control the temperature and check it with its thermometer. Its dual air vent system just gives you better power over it.

Moreover, the heat remains consistent throughout the cooking session, so it uses less fuel overall. But if you need to add some extra fuel, then you can use its easily accessible fire door.

But you will need to invest some of your time into it. Since the assembly can get a little complicated, it may turn out to be frustrating for you. Also, the thermometer may not give accurate results at a time. So that's something you should look out for.


  • Rust-resistant
  • It offers the entire package needed for grilling
  • Has a dual air vent system
  • Usage of less fuel
  • It comes with two grates


  • Time-consuming assembly
  • Inaccurate thermometer

In a world full of similar products, we would all prefer something different. Here is one product that has a distinctive remark but is amazing nonetheless. Whether you want to smoke your meat or grill, you can do it all with this one.

You get a bundle package with this. The package includes Cuisinart vertical charcoal smoker and a grill, 16-inch bundle with universal kettle cover. This nylon cover is waterproof and fits all 18 inches of kettle grills and smokers.

Cuisinart VerticalCuisinart Vertical

So you will not have to worry about it rusting or peeling. Moreover, you can leave it outside on rainy weather without any worries. 

Aside from being long-lasting, it is also very spacious. It has two 16 inches solid stainless steel cooking grates. So you can get two of your meals ready with the shortest time at hand.

Also, you get to have 402 sq inches of space. Hence, not only can you cook double items, you can keep them large and still get your work done.

But that’s not all. It comes with a porcelain-enameled water bowl that can provide steam when cooking. This will provide moisture and tenderness while imparting your food with a great flavor. What's more, you also get a dual air vent system that can maintain the temperature well. So your meal will cook evenly.

However, it does not come with extra tools that will help you grill. Also, you can't make it your all-time tour buddy because it is not transportable. You will need a truck to transport it. But if you are okay with these inconveniences, then you are good to go.


  • It comes with an amazing bundle package
  • Waterproof and will not rust
  • Spacious for large items
  • It comes with a porcelain-enameled water bowl
  • The dual air vent system


  • You will need to buy extra tools to work with it
  • Not transportable

Buying Guide:
Before You Buy What to Look for

You will be making the right decision if you choose to go with a drum smoker. But for that, you need to know which characteristics make your equipment perfect. You don’t want to end up buying a tool that will not adhere to your barbecue necessities. Hence, you should always keep a few things in mind.

• Should be Easy to Use

You would not want your cooking sessions to be filled with frustration. But that is something you will end up facing if your chosen tool is not easy to use. There are a lot of factors to consider if you are grilling or smoking your food, such as temperature control and maintenance.

The heat level is indeed very important when barbecuing. Constantly looking after it or adjusting it would be stressful even for a professional. But the equipment that is easy to use often comes with a good vent system that keeps it all under control. So, never avoid this feature.

• Should be Easy to Assemble

Ultimately, you will have to assemble the tool yourself before you start to barbecue. Some require minimal assembly, while others require hours of it. Additionally, without any prior DIY experience, you will be more puzzled at the start. 

When they are easy to assemble, they are also transportable. You can find them in two parts with a user guide. That way, you will know that they don't need huge trucks to accompany you to your picnic. Sounds pretty cool, right? Hence, always look for products that will provide minimal hassle.

• Should Have a Reasonable Price

You may wonder as to why would anyone choose to build a smoker themselves when they are readily available. Well, that’s because it costs less. And the cost is another huge factor when choosing the right one.

Does that mean it’s always cheaper to make one yourself? No, you can find something just as cheap and good in the market as well.

Although it's widely believed that expensive products are better than cheap ones, but that is not applicable in this case. Surely, they can be better. But even the cheap ones can turn out good, and that's the beauty of it. So, keep looking!

• Should Come in a Package Filled with the Right Parts

When surfing through these products, you will notice that a lot of them come in packages. Most of them come with tons of additional parts and tools that you will need. And you should look thoroughly onto them.

These additional can provide an easy cleanup, an accessory, or one that will help you keep an eye on the temperature. You can also get hooks and grates that will let you cook multiple items at once.

Surely, you wouldn't want to miss out on that. These parts can make or break your barbecue, so it is not something to overlook.

• Should Have Happy Customers

Everything you see on the internet should not be believed, but if something is constantly praised, it must be good, right? This is when the factor of going through reviews comes in. Best smokers have the best reviews, and fortunately, they are prevalent, as well.

You can go through their benefits and weaknesses and then make your decision. Plus, you can have access to multiple ugly drum smoker reviews along with reviews of bullet smokers. So, you can see which one fits your criteria perfectly before purchasing.

Lastly, you are the master, so you know what you want your steak to taste like. You will come across a lot of options that will draw you towards them, such as cheap ugly drum smokers for sale. But it is up to you to look thoroughly and find the best product for you.

How to Use a Drum Smoker Step-by-Step

To get the best out of something, you need to know how to use it properly. And the same goes for drum smokers. But don’t worry, learning how to use it is no rocket science. You only have to follow a few steps.

1. Light up the Smoker

At first, remove the lid, grates, and the charcoal basket. This step is necessary because then you will be lighting up the smoker to get started.

2. Open the Vents

You will see that your equipment has some vents on the side or bottom. Open them too when you light the smoker. These are essential tools for the management of the heat level, so try to keep them damage-free.

3. Fill the Charcoal Basket

As you have already removed the charcoal basket, fill it up with charcoals. Make sure you have the best quality fuel. Fill it to the top, so you wouldn’t have to add more after you start cooking.

4. Prepare the Charcoal

Now, you have to light the charcoal up. Meanwhile, check if there’s white ash on top of it or if it’s glowing red. To get things right, the fuel in the basket is still unlit. In the middle of which, you will have to make a small hole and pour down the lit pile of charcoal.

5. Control the Temperature

Afterward, put the lid on. This will help the temperature rise. Here, you can experiment with the vents for better control of the heat. You can close them if you want the level to go down. Or you can open them so that more air gets in to make it hotter.

6. Replace the Threaded Cap and Half-Close the Vent

Now it’s time to check the temperature. Wait for it to reach about 50 degrees below your desired value. Then, replace the threaded cap at the back of the smoker. After it reaches 25 degrees below your desired level, make sure the vent is closed halfway.

7. Put the Meat Inside the Smoker

You will notice some white smoke coming off at this point. After a while, it will give off thin blue smoke. Then, you open the lid and place the grates inside. Once you are done with that, place the meat inside and close the lids.

8. Monitor the Temperature

On one side of the smoker, you will see some holes. There, you can put in the meat probes to check heat levels from time to time. However, if there is a built-in thermometer with the smoker, then it won’t be necessary.

9. Close the Valves and Wrap the Chimney

After you are done with the cooking, close all the ball valves and use aluminum foil to wrap the chimney. That is a technique used to put out the fire. And you are done! Pretty simple, right?

Frequently Asked Questions:

Below are some of the most commonly asked queries regarding drum smokers:

Q1. How to keep a drum smoker clean?

Throw out the ash using the removable pan that collects it. Then set everything aside and sweep inside the chamber to get rid of the residue. Brush any build-up towards the bottom of the smoker.

Q2. Is it necessary to use a water pan? 

Yes, it is. The water in it turns into steam when cooking. This tenderizes the meat and gives it a better flavor.

Q3. How much meat can be cooked at once? 

It depends on the size of the grates of the smokers. However, typically, it can, at least, hold one large brisket in a grate.

Q4. Is rust a bad sign in smokers? 

Usually, it does not do any harm. But it should be removed as soon as possible. Rust can make the product weak. Plus, it will give your food a chemical taste as well as stick to it. So, you should remove it, especially if it’s on the inside.

Q5. Can the inside of a smoker be painted? 

Definitely. But you will have to take some precautions - don’t start grilling unless the paint is completely dry. And don’t use paint that may come off easily.

ugly drum smoker reviews

Final Words: Ultimately, the goal is to make good food and to enjoy the process making it. Without the right ingredients, the food will not taste nice, and without the right equipment, it will not be cooked properly. So go through the best drum smokers and choose whatever suits your needs. Happy barbecuing!

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Theresa Lori

Hi, I'm Theresa. My passion for grilling delicacy gradually built during the time I was living with my parents. My family members especially my mother was a great fan of grilled dishes to and from the love of food. I started preparing smoked food with my mom. This bonding helped me to know more and more about to smoke, grill what always I share on So, in two words you can call me a BBQ lover.

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