Pellet tube smokers are excellent alternatives to full-sized smokers or pellet grills. You can buy pellet tube smokers for your current grill that will give you a wonderful, mild smoky taste without the price tag or hassle of buying an entirely new appliance.
How do you decide what the best pellet tube smokers are? We looked around at different items and compiled this list of the nine best pellet tube smokers on the market today.
Lanney Pellet Smoker Tube
- Works on every type of grill, like gas, wood, and charcoal
- You can also use it with pellet grills to enhance smoky flavors
- Comes with two S hooks so you can hang it beneath your grate
- Hexagonal shape can still roll
- Have to hold both your torch and tube at odd angles to light the pellets
Lanney makes some of the best pellet tube smokers on the market, and this one is no exception. Its hexagonal shape and mesh-like structure ensure smoke billows out in a way that smokes your food evenly while keeping the tube from rolling out of place.
It allows air in, which helps produce more smoke and create more billowing, and allows the pellets to remain lit and burning. You can use a variety of wood flavors to infuse your meats, cheeses, and vegetables with the smoky flavor of your choosing.
Why You Should Consider Buying a Pellet Tube Smoker
Maybe you don’t have and don’t want a full smoker, or perhaps you want to smoke some food quickly without the hassle of firing up your smoker and waiting for hours for your food to cook.
That’s where pellet smoker tubes come in. They’re accessories you can use on your existing grill that essentially turns your grill into a pellet smoker. You get all the taste and tenderness of smoked foods straight from your trusty grill.
They’re far less expensive than smokers of all types, so they’re excellent for people who want to add mild smoky flavors to their meat without spending all the money on a smoker.
They’re also excellent for cold smoking, where you smoke your food at a temperature too cool to cook it. While a pellet grill can maintain such a low temperature, using a pellet tube smoker makes the process much easier.
What You Need to Know Before Buying a Pellet Tube Smoker
Before we jump ahead to our top picks, here are some things to consider before making your purchase.
How Pellet Tube Smokers Work
Pellet tube smokers are metal tubes with holes in which you burn wood chips or pellets. The flavor you get depends on the wood pellets you use (make sure they’re cooking pellets, not heating pellets).
You fill the tube with pellets, light the end of the tube with a butane torch or heat gun, and blow the flame out after a couple of minutes. Then you can put the tube where you need it inside your grill, and it will smoke for an average of two to five hours, depending on its length.
Easy, right? Certainly easier than a full smoker or even a pellet smoker, which can act as a grill.
Do Size and Shape Matter?
Yes, but which size and shape the best pellet tube smokers have depends on what you want. Many of them have six sides, which allows smoke to flow out in many different directions more evenly than a four-sided pellet tube.
Some are cylindrical, which would be the best shape if they were stable enough not to roll around in your grill. Many people tend to feel the six-sided smokers are the best compromise between four-sided and cylindrical smokers.
Also, the longer your pellet tube smoker, the more time you can take to smoke your food. If you’re looking for four to eight hours of smoking time, then a 12-inch to 18-inch pellet tube smoker will serve you well.
However, if you have a small grill or are just looking to smoke small amounts of food, a shorter smoker could work for you.
What Kinds of Grills Can You Use Pellet Tubes On?
You can use a pellet tube smoker on any grill. People tend to prefer them on gas grills, though, because it’s difficult to get any kind of a smoky flavor in your food when you’re using a gas grill.
The main problem with gas grills is that they have gaps specifically designed to let smoke out. They also don’t burn wood so if the smoke stayed inside, your food would probably have a bit of a chemical flavor to it.
Others might use a pellet tube smoker on a charcoal grill because they want different flavors from what the charcoal imparts, or because they want to cold smoke.
But essentially, if you have a grill, you can use a pellet tube smoker on it.
What Comes with a Pellet Smoker Tube?
Aside from the tube itself, many of the best pellet tube smokers also come with hooks that allow you to hang it up, a wire brush for cleaning, and possibly a silicon cleaning brush, too.
That’s it. No fancy contraptions, no lengthy setup instructions. That’s another advantage to using these little cooking accessories. They’re quite straightforward and you get nice, mildly smoked food.
The Best Pellet Tube Smokers You Can Find
We looked around at many different pellet tube smokers and narrowed our list down to these nine.
Lizzq Premium Pellet Smoker Tube
- Only one end gets too hot to handle
- Great for cold-smoking meats in addition to cheeses
- Can maintain a fairly steady temperature
- Works well enough for rushed smoking
- Doesn’t always impart a good smoky taste
- Sometimes difficult to light
Another maker of hexagonal stainless steel smoker tubes, Lizzq finds itself on multiple “best of” lists because they make a quality product that not only smokes your food well but also because it works on any grill and in any smoker.
Its design allows for up to five hours of smoking time. You can use wood chips or pellets with a variety of flavors, so you can smoke your food to the perfect taste for you and your family and friends.
Lizzq’s smoker tube is excellent for cold-smoking cheese, particularly on a pellet grill. Pellet grills burn hotter than a smoking tube does, though, so to use these two products for double the smoky flavor, you have to monitor your pellet grill to keep it at a low temperature.
As long as you’re willing to do that, though, Lizzq’s tube is excellent for this use.
Carpathen Pellet Smoker Tube
- Recipe book and temperature guide included
- Produces enough smoke to billow
- Manufactured by a small family business
- Is an excellent smoke tube for gas grills where you’re missing flavor
- Doesn’t work well vertically
- Requires careful temperature monitoring
For anyone who’s seriously thought about turning their grill into a smoker, Carpathen’s pellet tube smoker should work well. You’re best off using it with pellets instead of wood chips, but you get a great flavor infusion of flavor with this.
It’s a rectangular smoker, so you might not get the same evenness that you get with hexagonal smokers. On the upside, though, you do get more stability. It can’t roll unless you push it or tilt your grill, so it’ll stay in place.
Best of all, if you’re not happy with this pellet tube smoker, you can get your money back, no questions asked.
Skoo Pellet Smoker Tube
- Metal cleaning brush the same length as the tube included
- S-hook included for hanging inside your grill or for storage
- Creates stronger flavor when used on a pellet smoker
- Use care when lighting so as not to get the tube’s end too hot
Skoo is a well-known smoker manufacturer, including pellet smoker grills. They make a nice tube smoker as well, made of stainless steel and 12 inches long to work with almost any size grill.
You get up to five hours of billowing smoke, not just wafting or drifting smoke, and it will work with both pellets and wood chips. All you have to do is fill it with chips or pellets from one end and light it. The other end is closed, so the chips don’t fall out.
The hexagonal shape is prone to some rolling, but not nearly to the degree that cylindrical smoking tubes are. It’s a happy medium between a rectangular box and a cylinder when it comes to how evenly it smokes your food.
A-Maze-N Oval Expanding Pellet Tube Smoker
- Produces very little ash
- Doesn’t require many pellets for quick smoking sessions
- Can also burn sawdust and wood chips
- Takes a while to light, even with a butane torch
- Requires a lot of airflow from the grill
A-Maz-N makes quite possibly one of the most versatile tube smokers on the market. This oval smoker tube expands from 12 inches to 18 inches, meaning you can use it on unusually large grills and still get good smoke around the edges, but it’s still small enough to fit normal grills.
It only produces smoke for four hours in its 12-inch position. In its 18-inch position, though, it produces smoke for as long as six hours. So the amount of time it produces smoke depends on how long you make it.
Its oval design is meant to keep it from rolling around, but that doesn’t work as well as having physical sides like rectangular and hexagonal tubes do. You do, however, get very even smoking thanks to the oval shape.
Dimeshy Pellet Smoker Tube
- Thicker stainless steel adds durability
- You can hot or cold smoke fish and ribs with this
- Can act like a full-size smoker at a drastically reduced price for small amounts of food
- Hard to get corners clean with included brush
- Hard to get pellets lit sufficiently to stay lit
Dimeshy’s pellet smoker tube offers better stability than other smoking tubes because of its rectangular shape. It produces smoke that makes it a great choice for cold smoking, although it will work on most grills for hot smoking, too.
Merely fill it with pellets or chips, light the open end, let it burn for three to five minutes, and then blow it out. At that point, the pellets or chips should be smoldering, and smoke should be billowing well enough for you to smoke your food.
You can use a wood ball with it as well, although pellets will work a lot better. And since it’s 12 inches long, it works in most standard-sized grills. You can even use it in smaller Weber grills, although the tiny grills you put on your balcony might be too small.
Charcoal Companion Smoker Box
- Excellent value over regular smokers and pellet smokers
- There isn’t so much airflow that the chips will ignite
- Bottom is perforated to let water run out after soaking wood chips
- Smoking may be uneven due to the perforation pattern
- You need to soak your wood chips first
This is a box, not a tube per se, but we included it on our list of the best pellet tube smokers because it works the same way, and it does its job well. Its stainless steel construction gives it the look of a pencil box that has a top with holes in it.
Because it’s bigger than pellet tube smokers, and it’s a box, it sits firmly in your grill, so you don’t have to worry about it moving or rolling unless you decide to shake your grill around. And, because it’s larger than a tube smoker, you can create unique, mixed flavors of your choosing.
Smoke boxes are kind of tricky because there’s a very fine and delicate line between too many wood chips and not enough. Put too many in, and it doesn’t light properly, so it doesn’t smoke properly. Put in too few, and it’ll produce excellent smoke, but won’t produce it for very long.
A-Maze-N AMNPS Maze Pellet Smoker
- Works great for large grills where tubes won’t work
- You don’t need to check this smoker as often as a tube smoker
- Works with propane smokers as long as there’s airflow
- Works better with sawdust than anything else
- Doesn’t work well at higher altitudes
This, too, is a smoker box and not a tube. However, like the Charcoal Companion smoker box, we felt this deserved a mention on our best pellet smoker tubes list because it’s a great accessory for your grill.
It’s made from the same mesh-like, stainless steel material as A-Maze-N’s extendable smoking tube, but it smokes for up to 12 hours and even works for things like salt if you like smoky-tasting salt. While its smoking time will vary depending on the chips or pellets you use, it smokes for a lot longer than standard tubes.
These have no tops on them, so you can fill them loosely up to the top with pellets, wood chips, or sawdust. They have excellent airflow, so they don’t burn out easily unless you’re using them on a grill with poor airflow.
All Durable Pellet Smoker Tube
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- You can set it on the burner of a gas grill
- Comes with a cleaning brush that reaches all parts of the tube
- Doesn’t always stay lit
- Have to download cookbooks for this
This pellet smoker tube is a hexagonal tube that spreads smoke evenly throughout your grill. As a 12-inch tube, it works with most grills but won’t work with the largest grills, and won’t roll around with the slightest jostle as a cylindrical tube smoker will.
You can use this tube to smoke nuts, salt, and veggies in addition to meats, cheeses, and fish, giving you versatility with smoked food that you don’t get with other smokers. You can even get a good smoky flavor in your burgers and hot dogs if you want.
If you’re looking for the best pellet tube smokers, you have many to choose from. They make excellent additions to whatever type of grill you have or create a stronger smoker flavor in food you’ve already got in a standard pellet smoker.
With these, you can start working on the art of smoking food without spending money and using space on a smoker you may never use.