Can you use an electric smoker indoors?

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  June 15, 2022

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When it comes to smokers, then you’ll know that an electric smoker is one of the cleanest, most energy-efficient, and the most easy-to-use smokers that you can get out there.

But can you use one of these devices indoors?

Can You Use an Electric Smoker Indoors?

The short answer is: yes and no. Most traditional electric smokers are designed for outdoor use only, but specially-designed indoor electric smokers can be used inside the home because they are smokeless.

Basically, you can only use a traditional electric smoker outdoors because it produces carbon monoxide while it burns the wood chips.

But with modern indoor smokers, you can use electric smokers indoors since they’re smokeless.

This means that you won’t have to worry about any smoke or fumes irritating your eyes, or lungs, or setting off any fire alarms.

An electric smoker will be able to cook your meat just as well as traditional wood or charcoal smokers would do but there is a bit of a flavor difference since the smoky aroma isn’t as powerful.

How to buy a bbq smoker video
How to buy a bbq smoker video

But the good news is you won’t have any smoke smell in your home because these smokers don’t produce any smoke at all.

Can electric smokers be used indoors?

People always wonder if you can use the electric smoker inside your house?

Yes, you can smoke inside the home using an indoor electric smoker. But, you can’t smoke inside using a classic electric smoker.

Traditional outdoor smokers use wood chips to give food a smoky flavor and this combustion process poses some serious risks inside the home.

The main risk is carbon monoxide poisoning as the wood chips burn.

You’ll be able to smell the burning from the electric smoker, and this is a clear sign that you shouldn’t be using it indoors.

On the other hand, an indoor electric smoker uses special technology that completely eliminates any combustion process.

This means there’s no risk of carbon monoxide poisoning as there’s no burning taking place.

You can buy the Masterbuilt electric smoker and give food that smoky flavor all the time but then you’d have to use it outside.

That’s because it’s not a specially designed indoor smoker. Never use a traditional electric smoker inside your home.

But if you get an indoor smoker, smoking food inside an enclosed space is possible without worrying about carbon monoxide poisoning.

Indoor smokers are designed for indoor use, thus you can use them all the time inside the home, regardless of the weather.

Using electric smokers indoors is probably the most convenient way to smoke meat.

An electric indoor meat smoker is a cooking and smoking device that can be found in a number of culinary establishments, including restaurants.

But these days, many people have an indoor electric smoker in their apartment or house.

Many various types of meats, such as beef, pork, and chicken, can be smoked and barbecued in an indoor meat smoker.

Because indoor meat smokers are often smaller than outside models, they can be used without taking up too much floor space.

Most electric smokers are smokeless.

This means that you won’t have to worry about any smoke or fumes irritating your eyes and there’s no smoke smell inundating your home.

One of the main concerns about smoking indoors is carbon monoxide poisoning.

However, electric smokers don’t produce any carbon monoxide because they don’t use any combustion.

There’s also minimal fire risk when using an electric smoker indoors.

Unlike using an outdoor smoker, using an indoor electric smoker inside is safe. Beware of traditional electric smokers, however, as some of them can produce carbon monoxide.

So, if you want to use an electric smoker indoors, we recommend that you check if it’s labeled as “safe for indoor use”.

How to smoke safely indoors

But there are some things that you need to take into consideration before using one inside your home.

Proper ventilation

First, you need to have proper ventilation.

Electric smokers produce heat, and you need to have a way to circulate the air so the temperature doesn’t get too high in your home.

Level surface

You also need to make sure that the electric smoker is on a level surface. If it’s not, the heat can build up and cause a fire.

So, if you’re going to use an electric smoker indoors, just make sure to take the proper precautions.

Other than that, you’re good to go!

Are all electric smokers safe to use indoors?

No, traditional electric smokers typically produce a lot of smoke, which can be a health hazard.

Also, older electric smokers can produce carbon monoxide, which is a colorless and odorless gas that can be very dangerous.

So, if you’re going to use an electric smoker indoors, make sure to check if it’s safe for indoor use.

The best electric smokers will be labeled as such and will have special features that make them safe to use indoors, such as proper ventilation and a smokeless design.

Almost all newer models, however, have been designed to produce less smoke.

Most electric smokers are designed for indoor use, as they are much easier to control the temperature and smoke output.

If you’re considering using an electric smoker indoors, look for one that has a good seal to prevent smoke from escaping.

You might also want to consider an indoor electric smoker that uses infrared heating elements, as these don’t produce as much smoke.

Why can’t you use all electric smokers indoors?

The traditional electric smoker is not safe for use in an enclosed space.

Below, I’ll look at some of the reasons you can’t use a traditional electric smoker indoors:

They produce a lot of smoke

The main problem with using a traditional electric smoker indoors is that they produce a lot of smoke.

This can be a health hazard, as smoke can irritate your eyes and lungs.

It can also be a fire hazard, as the smoke can build up and cause a fire.

They can produce carbon monoxide

Another problem with using a traditional electric smoker indoors is that they can produce carbon monoxide.

This is a colorless and odorless gas that can be very dangerous.

It can cause headaches, dizziness, and even death.

So, if you’re going to use an electric smoker indoors, make sure to check if it’s safe for indoor use.

They don’t have proper ventilation

Another problem with using a traditional electric smoker indoors is that they don’t have proper ventilation.

This can be a health hazard, as the smoke can build up and cause a fire.

It can also be a fire hazard, as the heat can build up and cause a fire.

You just can’t use the traditional electric smoker inside unless it’s designed for such a purpose.

Fire risks

You are entirely incorrect if you believe that because this device does not require fuel sources, it will not start a fire.

This is HIGHLY unlikely but if you use an outdoor electric smoker inside the home, you can start a fire!

Electric smokers, like any other sort of smoker, can achieve such a high temperature during the cooking process that a fire can still break out inside your home.

It’s not only because smokers get extremely hot while in use; some equipment is prone to catching fire owing to design problems.

A fire can also start if the wood chip tray slips and is stuck within the smoker, causing the wood chips to catch fire.

Also, some electric smokers are prone to trip the breaker with their sheer energy use.

How do indoor meat smokers work?

Indoor electric smokers work by heating up an element inside the smoker, which then produces smoke.

Electric smokers work by slowly cooking meat at a low temperature using indirect heat.

The electric smoker has a heating element that is used to generate the smoke, and there is a water pan located beneath the smoking chamber.

The water pan adds moisture to the air, which prevents the meat from drying out during the smoking process.

The meat is placed on racks inside the smoking chamber, and the temperature is set using a thermostat.

Once the temperature is set, the electric smoker does the rest of the work.

The electric smoker will cook the meat slowly and evenly and without producing smoke.

This means that you won’t have to worry about fire hazards or smoke smells.

It’s also safer than using a gas stove because you won’t have to deal with propane tanks or anything else.

The best part about this type of cooker is that you can cook foods faster than you could with a conventional oven.

Since the heat source is contained within the cooker, then you won’t have to wait around for things to bake or roast.

But what’s special about outdoor and indoor electric smokers is that you can add flavored wood chips to the wood chip tray and this will give you that traditional smoky and sweet flavor that will really elevate your cooking experience.

Depending on the type of wood chips you use, you can get the smoky flavors you want!

Do electric smokers need ventilation?

No, indoor electric smokers don’t require any special ventilation.

However, you should still make sure that there is proper airflow in your home so that the temperature doesn’t get too high.

You also need to make sure that the electric smoker is on a level surface. If it’s not, the heat can build up and cause a fire.

So, if you’re going to use an electric smoker indoors, just make sure to take the proper precautions. Other than that, you’re good to go!

Can you use an electric smoker on an enclosed porch?

Yes, you can use an electric smoker on an enclosed porch if it’s designed for indoor use.

The porch, if enclosed, is pretty much like a small room. The one thing I advise is leaving plenty of room behind, in front, and on the sides of the smoker for airflow.

If you live in an apartment or condo, and your balcony is very small, I don’t recommend using an electric smoker on the balcony.

It’s best to use in larger areas where there is more ventilation.

Are indoor smokers easier to clean?

These machines tend to be easier to clean since they don’t produce as much smoke.

In fact, most of them come with a removable lid so that you can easily remove the food once it’s done.

So, you shouldn’t have any trouble cleaning them. The only thing that you may find difficult is removing the ash from the bottom of the cooker.

But, if you follow the instructions carefully, then you shouldn’t have any problems.

The Cons Of Using An Indoor Smoker

Can I buy an indoor meat smoker?

Smokers are very popular for camping trips, picnics, tailgating parties, or other outdoor activities where you’d like to grill up some delicious food.

However, if you’re planning on cooking them indoors, then you’ll need to make sure that you’ve got enough space to set up your smoker.

Indoor electric smokers can be just as large as some outdoor smokers, so make sure you’ve got enough room to accommodate one.

If you’re going to be using your indoor smoker frequently, then you should consider buying a larger model so that you can store it somewhere when not in use.

If you’re looking for something smaller, then you may want to consider getting an induction cooker instead. These are great for small spaces and also for those who don’t have much room to spare.

If you’re thinking about purchasing an electric smoker, then you’ll want to make sure that you buy one with a temperature gauge.

This way, you can easily monitor how hot your smoker has gotten during the cooking process.

These smokers are usually smaller than the regular ones that you might find in your backyard. They are a self-contained unit and get rid of the smoke through an induction fan at the back.

The pros of using an indoor smoker

You can use your indoor smoker anywhere. Whether you’re in the kitchen, living room, or even outdoors, then you can still enjoy smoking meats.

Since these machines aren’t powered by burning fuels, then you won’t be producing any harmful gases into the air.

So, you won’t have to spend time cleaning up after yourself.

Since these units are self-contained, then you won’t need to worry about running out of propane or electricity.

The types of units will also use far less wood and fuel than the outdoor varieties.

Some of them also come with wheels that you can use to transport your smoker from indoors to the outdoors.

You can use these smokers all year round too. This makes it extra handy if you are wanting to enjoy cooked meats during the winter season.

Because what is better than some roasted pork during the colder seasons?

You’ll also be able to control the temperature that your meat smokes at. This is very important if you are cooking your meat to within a fraction of a degree.

This means that you won’t run the risk of drying out your meat either.

The cons of using an indoor smoker

This type of smoker is not ideal for a very small kitchen. You would probably need to invest in a bigger model if you want to use it regularly.

This unit is also much more expensive than your outdoor model.

If you are trying to save yourself a few bucks and you do have the outdoor space for a smoker, then you might want to opt for an outdoor model instead.

If you don’t have enough space for an outdoor smoker, then you should consider buying two of these units.

One for indoors and another for outdoors. This way, you’ll be able to cook whatever you like while enjoying the benefits of both models.

Takeaway

As long as you buy an electric smoker that is labeled as suitable for use inside the home, you can cook delicious smoked meat in the home.

Compared to a traditional smoker that is only used outdoors, an indoor electric smoker is much cleaner and easier to use.

It is also a great option for those who want to save space or for those who want to use their smoker all year round.

The electric smoker produces virtually no smoke and carbon monoxide so it’s safe to use indoors.

In a few hours you can make the best evenly smoked brisket without having to smoke food with gas or charcoal.

It’s very convenient, plus you can set the optimal temperature and go about your day while the meat smokes.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Lakeside Smokers is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with BBQ Smoking (& Japanese food!) at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.