Few names in the grilling community are as respected as Pit Boss, a brand known for its quality grills and smokers. Here at Fire Food Chef we decided it was time to take a closer look at Pit Boss’ collection of smokers.
There were so many great smokers to choose from the company’s line up but after many hours of combing reviews, customer forums, queries, and product comparisons we finally narrowed down our selection to a handful of top picks!
- User Rating: 4.5
- Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 23 x 47 in
- Weight: 52 lbs
- 2 Stainless Steel burners (13, 500 BTU)
- Dual valve/burner Temperature Control
- 100-350F Temperature Range
- 3 Porcelain-coated Cooking Grids
- 884 sq inch Total Cooking Area
- Front-loadingWood Chip Drawer
- Grease tray
- Large viewing window (High-temperature seal)
- 2 Rear wheels for easy transport
We begin our review with the Pit Boss Vertical LP, a digital gas smoker. First, you’ll find that this model is well packaged and easy to assemble. All the parts are sturdy and high quality. There are 2 legs on the rear legs for easy transport around your backyard or outdoors.
One of the best things about the Pit Boss Vertical Lp Gas Smoker is how quickly and consistently it maintains a temperature. It features a unique dual valve burner system that includes a 3500 BTU burner for the wood chips, and a 10,000 BTU burner for the cabinet.
The dual valve system allows you to adjust the wood burner temperature as well as the cabinet for a more consistent temperature. Using a single knob control, you can achieve a temperature range of between 100 -350F. The side dampeners make it easier to maintain a steady temperature of about 225F, which is optimal for smoking meat.
Either wet chips or pellets can be used for burning. The water tray is a decent size and will hold enough water for about 1.5 - 2 hrs before it needs refilling. With 884 square inches of cooking area, you can smoke diverse dishes. The 4 grates are porcelain-coated and can be easily cleaned with soap and water, as long as you grease them before smoking your meat.
A front-loading slide out tray allows for easy loading and refueling without any risk of getting burned. There aren’t any fancy LED or digital features, but the design is stylish with a red, semi-gloss finish. The large viewing window makes monitoring your smoked dishes safe and easy as well.
Overall, the Pit Boss Vertical LP Gas Smoker is an amazing bargain and moderately priced. Your Your investment will certainly go far and elevate your smoking to a new level of delicious!
- Dual valve burner system maintains consistent temperature
- Heats quickly with 13,000 Total BTU output
- Durable, well-built
- Spacious, 4 cooking grates
- Does not include internal meat thermometer
- Water tray could be slightly bigger for smoking longer than 2 hrs
- Can’t adjust burners separately
- User Rating: 4.2
- Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 23 x 41 in
- Weight: 48.5 lbs
- Dual valve/burner system
- 100-350 Temperature Range
- 4 Porcelain-coated Cooking Grates
- 676 sq inch Total Cooking Area
- 2 Stainless Steel burners (13, 500 Total BTU)
- Front-loading Wood Chip And Grease tray
- Large viewing window with high temperature door seal
Following close behind at #2 in our review, the Pit Boss 77425 vertical LP is another gas smoker, and very similar to our first pick. Slightly smaller than the Pit Boss 77435, it includes 3 porcelain-coated grates and a total of 676 sq inches of cooking area. That’s still plenty of space to smoke, say, a 12lb brisket.
Like the 77435, the BTU output is a total 13,500, and comes from 2 separate stainless steel burners. It also uses a dual valve system which supplies gas to both burners, one for the wood chips, and the other for the smoking cabinet.
Although the 77425 holds a consistent temperature, adjusting the temperature control is tricky. There are no numbers on the dial so you can experience a quite drastic temperature variance depending on the level of humidity you’re cooking in. You may also find heat escaping from the corners of the large viewing window, which is high-temperature sealed.
Thankfully, this is a well made gas smoker that heats quickly and is easy to clean, thanks to the front-loading wood chip tray and grease catcher. You might, however, find the water tray too small if you want to slow cook food overnight. Replacing the water with a 13"×9"×2" baking pan is the most direct solution, otherwise you’ll have to refill the water tray about every 2 hrs.
Finally, the metal wood tray tends to expand when heated, which makes it difficult to remove without considerable effort. This can cause scraping on the inside because of the effort required to niggle the tray out, but it’s a small problem overall.
For quality and temperature consistency, the Pit Boss 77425 is hard to beat and well worth the price.
- 13,000 BTU output heats quickly
- Maintains consistent temperature using dual valve stainless steel burner system
- Durable construction
- Easy to load wood chips and clean
- Can experience considerable temperature variance
- Difficult to adjust temperature control knob precisely because dial has no numbers
- Wood chip tray expands when heated
- Water tray not large enough for smoking overnight
- User Rating: 3.2 / 5 Stars
- Product Dimensions: 28 x 29 x 53 in
- Weight: 131 lbs
- Monitor internal temperatures with digital LED readout and meat probe
- Five porcelain coated cooking grids
- 1830 sq in. cooking area
- Porcelain-coated water pan and heat deflector
- 40+ lb hopper capacity with pellet Purge
- Digital 150 - 450 temperature range
- Auto-start 300 watt igniter with auto shut-off
If you prefer a more traditional pellet smoker that can handle large gatherings, the Pit Boss 77550 5.5 is a fantastic choice. There are, however, few performance issues you should be aware of.
There’s a lot to love about the PIt Boss pellet smoker. First, it’s is a large capacity smoker with 5 porcelain-coated cooking grates for a total of 1830 sq inches of cooking area. You could smoke salmon, pork butt, brisket, chicken, and a rack of oysters all at the same time!
The large viewing window is high-temperature sealed, and the programmable temperature control adjusts between 150 - 450F, which is much hotter than you’ll ever need for smoking meat.
You could smoke your meat overnight in it without having to replace wood chips, thanks to the 40lb hopper. A digital LED display reads the internal temperature so you can easily monitor the progress of your smoked masterpiece. The display could be a bit brighter though.
One problem of concern with the Pit Boss 77550 Pellet Smoker is the temperature variance. Admittedly, you’ll likely have more difficulty maintaining a consistent temperature in humid weather conditions with almost any pellet smoker.
Unfortunately, this model also has an auto shut-off that activates if left on for longer than 12hrs. This is strange, since the hopper is designed to accommodate enough pellets for 24 hrs. Who wants to wake up in the middle of the night to turn their pellet smoker back on?
Lastly, the water tray isn’t ventilated enough to be useful over 24hrs. The lack of ventilation produces too much humidity inside the smoker, which can turn your pellets into a gummy, sticky residue that can block the pellet feeder. lf this happens, cleaning it will be a hassle.
All in all, the large-capacity Pit Boss 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker is spacious, easy to assemble, and priced moderately enough to be a good bargain. As long as you don’t try to smoke anything for longer than 12 hrs, this model will perform very well.