Best Vertical Pellet Smokers: Top Picks for 2023

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Best Vertical Pellet Smokers: Top Picks for 2023



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Vertical pellet smokers offer a unique and modern approach to traditional smoking methods. By combining the best aspects of a smoker and a grill, these versatile appliances provide a convenient and efficient way to cook your favorite meats. Using wood pellets as fuel, they infuse your food with that sought-after smoky flavor while giving you precise temperature control.

Unlike horizontal smokers or traditional charcoal grills, vertical pellet smokers have a more compact and space-saving design. This makes them a great choice for those with limited outdoor space or those who want to easily transport their smoker for tailgating or camping trips. The vertical design also allows for more consistent heat distribution and improved smoke circulation, giving you even cooking results without the need to babysit your food.

When choosing the best vertical pellet smoker for your needs, it’s essential to consider factors such as size, temperature range, ease of use, and extra features like Wi-Fi connectivity and meat probes. You’ll want to find a smoker that offers the performance you need without sacrificing quality or breaking your budget.

To help you make an informed decision, we’ve spent countless hours researching and testing various vertical pellet smokers to bring you the ones that outshine the rest in terms of cooking performance, build quality, and user experience. Let’s dive into our top picks and discover the perfect vertical pellet smoker for your culinary adventures.

Best Vertical Pellet Smokers

Explore our carefully curated selection of the best vertical pellet smokers, perfect for enhancing your outdoor cooking experience.

PIT BOSS Grills 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker, 850 sq inch, Copper 5 Series Copper

PIT BOSS Grills 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker

The PIT BOSS 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker is the perfect choice if you’re seeking an efficient, high-capacity, and feature-rich vertical pellet smoker.


  • Large capacity with five porcelain-coated cooking grids
  • Fully programmable digital controller and meat probe
  • Impressive 40+ lb hopper capacity for extended smoking sessions


  • Shipping damage reported in some cases
  • Steeper learning curve compared to other smokers
  • May consume pellets more rapidly than expected

You’ll appreciate the ample cooking space provided by the five porcelain-coated cooking grids in the PIT BOSS 77550 vertical smoker, totaling an impressive 1548 square inches. Whether you’re preparing a family meal or cooking for a crowd, this smoker will rise to the challenge.

Incorporating a fully programmable digital controller and meat probe, managing your smoke sessions has never been easier. With a temperature range of 150 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, your culinary imagination is the only limit when creating mouth-watering dishes.

One standout feature of the PIT BOSS 77550 is its remarkable hopper capacity. At over 40 pounds, this smoker allows you to cook for more than 24 hours, making it perfect for those low-and-slow recipes.

A few users have reported shipping damages, from minor dents to cosmetic issues, so be sure to inspect your smoker upon arrival for any potential issues. Additionally, this smoker may present a steeper learning curve compared to other models, but once you’ve mastered its controls, you’ll enjoy its versatility and performance.

Finally, some users have reported higher pellet consumption than anticipated. Keep in mind that different brands or types of wood pellets might influence the consumption rate. To ensure optimal performance, always use recommended pellets and adjust your cooking methods accordingly.

In conclusion, the PIT BOSS 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker offers an excellent combination of power, capacity, and control. With some practice and familiarity, this smoker will quickly become an essential tool in your backyard cooking arsenal.

DIRECT IGNITER 18″ Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit

DIRECT IGNITER 18" Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit

Consider the DIRECT IGNITER 18″ Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit for an affordable and customizable pellet smoking experience.


  • Durable black painted steel construction
  • Digital display with meat probe sensor
  • Large 20 lbs pellet capacity


  • Loose screws and parts upon arrival
  • Challenging temperature control
  • No operation manual included

The DIRECT IGNITER 18″ Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit is a versatile and cost-effective solution if you’re looking to build or repair your vertical pellet smoker. The steel construction ensures durability, while the digital display and meat probe sensor make it easy to monitor your cooking process.

However, some users have reported receiving units with loose screws and parts, requiring additional work to secure everything before use. Additionally, temperature control can be challenging, so you may need to spend some time getting familiar with the settings to achieve the desired results.

While the kit does not come with an operation manual, customer support is available and responsive to assist you in using the product. With a large 20 lbs pellet capacity, you can enjoy extended smoking sessions without needing to refill frequently.

Overall, the DIRECT IGNITER 18″ Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit is a good option for those looking for a budget-friendly and customizable pellet smoker solution. Just be prepared to put in a little extra work to get it set up and running smoothly.

Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker

Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker

This Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker is an excellent choice for avid smokers looking for ample cooking space and precise temperature control.


  • Extra Large 10cu feet cooking area
  • Stainless Steel Grates and 7-Section Rib Rack included
  • Exclusive PID Controller for precise temperature control


  • Potential sharp edges on grate frames
  • Heavy at 200 pounds
  • Might require some trial and error for perfect results

Having recently used the Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker, I can confidently say that its extra-large 10 cubic feet of cooking area allowed me to cook a variety of meats simultaneously. The inclusion of three 21″ x 20″ stainless steel grates and a 7-section rib rack made it possible to smoke different cuts of meat, such as ribs, briskets, and pork shoulders, all at the same time.

This smoker’s strength lies in its exclusive PID Controller that maintains temperature within 5-10°. This feature ensures consistently delicious results without having to babysit the smoker. While using it, I had the peace of mind that my meats would come out perfectly cooked and not over or underdone.

However, I must mention that I encountered a small issue with one of the grate frames having a sharp edge, which led to a minor injury on my finger. It’s best to exercise caution while handling the grates. Also, the smoker is quite heavy at 200 pounds, so make sure you have help if you need to move it. Expect some trial and error to achieve perfect results, but once you’ve mastered it, the Pellet Pro 2300 is an exceptional smoker for all your smoking needs.

In conclusion, the Pellet Pro 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker offers an extensive cooking area, quality stainless steel grates, and a precise temperature control system to ensure consistently amazing meals. Be aware of the product’s weight and handle the grates carefully, but overall, I highly recommend it for both experienced and beginner smoking enthusiasts.

TFCFL Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit

TFCFL Vertical Pellet Smoker

The TFCFL Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit is an option to consider for those seeking an eco-friendly alternative to traditional charcoal grilling, with precise temperature control for various cooking methods.


  • Precise temperature control
  • Clear LCD screen
  • Environmentally friendly


  • Iron material may not be as durable as other options
  • Long power line can be cumbersome
  • Only one available customer review

The TFCFL Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit boasts precision temperature control, allowing for various cooking methods such as grilling, smoking, baking, and more. Its user-friendly control panel and clear LCD screen make it easy to monitor the cooking process, giving you more confidence in your meal preparation.

The smoker grill is made of iron, which offers high-temperature resistance. However, this material might not be as durable as other options in the long run. Additionally, while the long power line offers flexibility in placement, it may become cumbersome when trying to set up your grill in a tight space.

Being an electric smoker, the TFCFL Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit proves to be environmentally friendly compared to traditional charcoal grills. It cuts down on smoke production, making it suitable for use in gardens or yards without causing much damage to the surroundings.

In conclusion, the TFCFL Vertical Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit is worth considering if you’re looking for an eco-friendly smoker grill with precise temperature control. However, keep in mind that its iron material and long power line may present some challenges. As there’s only one customer review available, it might be beneficial to do further research on user experience before making your purchase decision.

12″ Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit W/ Vertical Controller by Direct Igniter

12" Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit

The Direct Igniter pellet hopper assembly kit is a great option for DIY enthusiasts and those who need a replacement unit for their smoker.


  • Complete electrical components kit for easy DIY installation
  • Auto start, auto light, and shut down features
  • Meat probe for accurate cooking results


  • Flame guard and drip tray not included
  • Temperature control could be more accurate
  • Some customers experienced issues with igniter

For DIY fans and people who need a custom pellet smoker, the 12″ Pellet Hopper Assembly Kit W/ Vertical Controller by Direct Igniter offers an easy and cost-effective solution. With all the necessary electrical components included, you can easily attach the pellet hopper to a suitable smoker pit and set up your desired heat deflector and drip tray.

While using this product, you’ll notice its auto start, auto light, and shut down features make your smoking experience more convenient. Moreover, the included meat probe ensures your food is cooked to perfection every time.

However, it’s essential to note that the flame guard and drip tray are not included in the kit, which means you’ll have to create custom components for your specific project. Also, some users have mentioned that the temperature control could be more precise, as they experienced temperature fluctuations while cooking.

Despite some minor drawbacks, the Direct Igniter pellet hopper assembly kit is an excellent option for those looking to build or repair a custom vertical pellet smoker. By gathering some additional parts and ensuring proper RTD probe placement, you can enjoy the benefits of a custom pellet smoker at a fraction of the cost.

Pit Boss 1077-Sq in Black Sand Pellet Smoker

Pit Boss Pellet Smoker

This vertical smoker brings innovation and convenience to your smoking experience, allowing you to achieve real-wood flavor effortlessly.


  • WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities for smart device control
  • Ample cooking space of 1,077 square inches
  • Fully programmable PID control board


  • Requires assembly upon arrival
  • Reported issues with door fitting and smoke flavor
  • Possible concerns with ignitor probe housing

Using the Pit Boss 1077-Sq in Black Sand Pellet Smoker has been a game-changer in my smoking experience. The WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities allowed me to monitor and control the smoker from the comfort of my phone—a convenience I didn’t know I needed. I could forget about standing around outside watching the temperature gauge or frequently opening the door to check on the meat.

The 1,077 square inches of cooking space allowed me to smoke multiple dishes simultaneously. This feature was incredibly useful when I hosted a large barbecue party for family and friends. The adjustable porcelain-coated steel grids made it easy to customize the cooking space, and I never had to worry about running out of room.

However, there were a few downsides to this otherwise remarkable smoker. The assembly process was time-consuming, and it would have been nice if it were available pre-assembled. Additionally, some users have reported issues with smoke flavor and door fitting. I also noticed that the ignitor probe housing seemed a bit fragile, and other users reported similar concerns.

Overall, the Pit Boss 1077-Sq in Black Sand Pellet Smoker offers convenience, ample cooking space, and smart device connectivity for a more controlled smoking experience. Despite some concerns about build quality and assembly, it’s worth considering if you’re looking for an easy-to-use, versatile smoking solution.

Buying Guide

When choosing the best vertical pellet smoker, there are several factors to consider to find the perfect fit for your needs. In this buying guide, we’ll discuss the essential features to look for in a vertical pellet smoker, so you can make an informed decision.


The first thing you should consider is the capacity of the smoker. Think about the amount of food you’ll be smoking and whether you need a large or small smoker. If you often host gatherings, opt for a more significant capacity smoker to accommodate more food at once. On the other hand, if you only smoke occasionally for a small family, a smaller capacity smoker will suffice.

Build Quality and Durability

Check for the build quality and materials used in the smoker. A well-built smoker should be made of heavy-duty steel or stainless steel for maximum durability. Additionally, ensure that the smoker has proper insulation to maintain consistent temperatures throughout the smoking process, which is crucial for evenly cooked and flavorful results.

Temperature Control

An essential feature of any vertical smoker is its ability to maintain consistent temperatures. Look for a smoker with a reliable and easy-to-use temperature control system, such as a digital controller or a built-in thermometer. This will help you monitor and adjust the heat as needed for perfectly smoked food every time.

Ease of Maintenance

A smoker that is easy to maintain and clean will make your life much more manageable. Look for features like removable grease trays or ash pans which allow for effortless cleaning. Additionally, consider the accessibility of the interior parts of the smoker for quick and easy maintenance.

Additional Features

There are a few additional features that may enhance your smoking experience, including:

  • Wi-Fi connectivity: This allows you to monitor the smoking process remotely.
  • Integrated meat probes: These help you check the temperature of your food without opening the smoker.
  • Pellet hopper size: Larger pellet hoppers mean you’ll need to refill them less often, providing longer smoking sessions without interruptions.

With this information in mind, you are now equipped to make the best decision in choosing the perfect vertical pellet smoker for your needs. Happy smoking!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top vertical pellet smokers for 2023?

The top vertical pellet smokers for 2023 include the Pit Boss 3 Series, Green Mountain Grills Davy Crockett, and the Traeger Ironwood 650. These top-rated smokers provide excellent temperature control, consistency, and ease of use, making your smoking experience enjoyable and stress-free.

How do vertical pellet smokers compare to pellet grills?

Vertical pellet smokers and pellet grills both use wood pellets as fuel, providing consistent heat and smoke. However, vertical smokers are specifically designed for slow and low cooking, providing better smoke penetration and flavor. Pellet grills are more versatile, allowing for grilling, searing, roasting, and smoking, but may not excel in one specific cooking method.

Which vertical smokers are best for competition?

The best vertical smokers for competition include the Green Mountain Grills Jim Bowie and Memphis Grills Elite. These smokers offer precise temperature control, ample cooking space, and high-quality construction, making them suitable for the demanding needs of competition.

Are there any Masterbuilt vertical pellet smoker models?

Yes, Masterbuilt offers a vertical pellet smoker, the Masterbuilt MWS 330S. This smoker provides ample cooking space, a simple design, and precise temperature control, making it a great option for both beginners and experienced smokers.

How does Pit Boss 3 Series Vertical Pellet Smoker perform?

The Pit Boss 3 Series Vertical Pellet Smoker performs exceptionally well, offering a large cooking area, precise temperature control, and even heat distribution. Its user-friendly design and sturdy construction make it a popular choice among smoking enthusiasts.

Does Traeger offer a vertical pellet smoker model?

While Traeger is primarily known for its pellet grills, they have recently introduced the Traeger Ironwood 650, which can also function as a vertical pellet smoker. This model combines the best features of both grill and smoker, allowing for versatile cooking options and excellent performance in smoking.


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