Masterbuilt vs Bradley Electric Smokers: Choosing the Optimum One
This is for those of you who have decided to elevate your palate by cooking up a restaurant-style smoked meal at your very backyard. With a smoker, you can do meat, brisket, port butt, cornbread, meatloaf, meatballs, chicken, whole turkeys, and much more. So, what is the best smoker to start with?
Almost every smoking enthusiasts love the idea of closely monitoring the entire process of smoking their food for hours on end, adjusting the heat, and fussing with the smoke levels. If you are a first-time user, you would want to get a smoker that is easy to use, reliable, and is well-constructed.
Of all the brands that we have looked into, here is Masterbuilt vs Bradley Smokers, two of the top brands that you can compare and choose from.
Masterbuilt vs Bradley Smokers
Masterbuilt Electric Smoker:
• Overall Construction
The Masterbuilt smoker has a sleek design and an enormous capacity for smoking meat. It is equipped with digital settings and a smoke-on-demand option. Also, it comes with a meat probe attached to the smoker so you can check the internal temperature of your food while cooking.
Furthermore, the outer body, as well as its internal shelves and racks, are powder coated with a layer of chrome, and it has a full viewing window. Inside, the racks have a bend on the back that allows you to pull them about 50 percent out for marinating the food.
At the bottom, there is a stainless-steel water bowl that catches any drippings or moisture to your recipe. Also, there is an ashtray at the bottom that you can use for discarding the wooden pellet ashes. The door has an adjustable door latch that allows you to seal the door completely while you are smoking.
The Masterbuilt smoker comes with a stand along with caster wheels that need manual assembly. Also, there is a handle at the back of the smoker, so you can quickly move it from one place to another.
• Smoking Features
In the latest Masterbuilt models, the custom smoke feature uses a patent-pending sensor and an independent heating element to control the smoke intensity throughout your recipe. You can experiment with five different smoke settings from light smoke to the intense smoky flavor.
• Fuel Source
The Wood pellets that you feed to the smoker serve two purposes - a heating source and adding smoke-infused flavor to your food. Its hopper holds roughly twenty pounds of pellets. If set on high, the smoker uses about two pounds of pellet per hour.
Its auger feeds the pellet to the crucible, and then they burn to ignite as your heat source is using less energy to operate. Wood pellets give you the opportunity to experiment with different flavors such as Hickory, Mesquite, Apple, and have fun with varying types of wood with your recipes.
When you are smoking with pellets, you are going to get a consistent smoke flavor. However, if you want a little bit more smoke-infused taste, press the smoke on demand button and add that to your cooking time.
Therefore, if you are doing a ten-hour brisket recipe, time it for 12 hours – ten hours on the cooking time and two hours for smoking.
Tips: Read here to know how you will use a Masterbuilt smoker.
• Bluetooth Connectivity
The updated Bluetooth feature in the latest models gives you control of the barbecue from the palm of your hand with the Masterbuilt app. You can experience the same control and monitoring options on the smoker from your app, plus you can search for recipes, set reminders, and make shopping lists with it.
• Customizable Features
You can customize the smoker with innovative accessories and take your barbecue to the next level with a grill and finish element. You can grill burgers, hot dogs, steaks, and more while adding smoke-infused flavor.
With the rotisserie feature, you can have smoked rotisserie chicken in about one hour instead of waiting for four to five in other smokers. The Masterbuilt smoker is accessory-ready, so you can easily attach additional meat probes, side shelves, disposable pans, and more.
This smoker has a vertical design, so it takes up less footprint space on your patio. The digital control panel is a cool feature; simply set your temperature and time, and with the smoke on-demand button, you can add in more flavors to your food.
Bradley Electric Smoker:
• Overall Construction
The Bradley smoker is a cabinet-style smoker. Its main cabinet has four to six slots, depending on the model that you choose to buy, in which you slide in the shelves before you put your meat on. The vent is on the top for the smoke to go out, besides the heating element at its back.
There is a reflective tray at the bottom of the shelves and a little diffuser that catches all drippings. Also, at the very bottom end of the smoker, there is a pan that can be used to collect all the coal.
Since it is a digital smoker, there is a control unit along with it that is usually placed on the side separately. The unit has a chimney stack on the top.
There are three cables, one for the sensor; one for powering the heating element, and the other one is the main power cord. The installation of the cords is straightforward and can be done by anyone without any assistance.
• Smoking Features
After you have loaded the meat or any other type of food that you want to smoke, you can put in the wooden bisquettes or the puck. A bisquette lasts typically for about twenty minutes.
So, if you are smoking ribs for three hours, you know precisely how many of them you need, and you can load up the smoker with the necessary amount. The maximum quantity of bisquettes that you can load into the smoker can last up to nine hours.
Using wooden bisquettes is one of the convenient features of the Bradley smoker as opposed to most of the smokers using an auger and little wooden sawdust pellets. In those models, you throw in a bunch of pellets into the hopper and have to keep smoking up until they have been ultimately used up.
Moreover, if you wish to add in more flavors into the meat, you can use a mix of different woods. Such as; Mesquite or Hickory or any other type of wood that you would prefer into the chimney stack attached to the control unit.
There are a couple of rings that comes along with the unit, which helps in pushing the bisquettes. The chimney is directly connected to the feeder that mechanically pushes them into the smoker.
There are about 14 different flavors of bisquettes available, so you have quite a wide range to choose from if you wish to customize the flavors up a little. The digital control unit allows you to set the oven timer, the temperature and also manage the number of bisquettes that are pushed into the smoker by the feeder.
Dissimilarities between Masterbuilt and Bradley Electric Smokers
So, here are a few key features that you would want to keep in mind before you make your final choice.
• Control Panel
In the Bradley smokers, the control panel is a separate device from the smoker, so you have the ability to keep the control panel away from weather.
Moisture is problem some for electronic devices; therefore, leaving them outside, especially if you are living in a place that is either very humid or has a lot of rainfall, can have an impact on the control panel. However, in the Masterbuilt the control unit is set along with the smoker.
• Availability of Stand
The Masterbuilt smoker comes with a stand along with a caster wheel, making it portable. However, the Bradley smoker sits directly on the ground.
• Use of Bisquettes
In the Bradley models, with each bisquette lasting for up to twenty minutes, there is little to no chance of moisture entering them. So, you don't have to worry about them going bad or getting mildew.
Another advantage of using bisquettes is that you know exactly how many you need, so you can safely store the rest in a pleasant dry environment. However, one of the drawbacks is that you can't find bisquettes in any local or hardware store.
For purchasing them, you would have to order online, which makes them more expensive to buy compared with wooden pellets.
• Heating Elements
Bradley smoker has more heating elements than the Masterbuilt system, such as the external control panel and the automatic mechanical bisquette feeder. So, overall, there are more parts that could get damaged or might need replacement.
Conclusion: Both the electric smokers have a lot of similar features, but at the same time, there are a few different features that differentiate them from one another and can tip them in your favor.
Although in this tug of war between Masterbuilt vs Bradley Smokers, they both will give you a sumptuous smoked meal that can easily compete with high-end restaurants.