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9 Best Vertical Pellet Smokers (2024 Ultimate Guide)

Pellet smokers have revolutionized the way we approach outdoor cooking, offering a perfect blend of convenience and traditional smoking methods. These devices operate by burning wood pellets, which provide a steady stream of smoke, ensuring a consistent and desirable smoky flavor to the food.

With advancements in technology, vertical pellet smokers have entered the market, targeting those who seek to maximize their cooking space while maintaining a smaller footprint in their outdoor cooking area. Upright pellet smokers are particularly favored for their ability to maintain low and slow cooking temperatures, which is essential for tender and flavorful meats.

When searching for the best vertical pellet smoker, potential buyers should consider several key factors. Capacity is one such consideration, as it determines how much food you can smoke at once, a crucial component for entertaining large groups or meal prepping.

Temperature range and control are also paramount, as the best smoking results often require precise heat management. Furthermore, build quality and the durability of materials can significantly impact the longevity and performance of the smoker.

Another aspect to be mindful of is the ease of use. Features like digital controls, meat probes, and easy-to-clean designs can greatly enhance the overall smoking experience. While some may look for additional features like Wi-Fi connectivity for remote monitoring, others might prioritize a more simple and straightforward user experience.

Finding the right balance between these elements and aligning them with personal cooking habits and preferences will guide enthusiasts to make the most fitting choice for their barbecue endeavors.

Recognizing the vital features that contribute to a successful smoking session has guided our extensive research and testing process.

Best Vertical Pellet Smokers

9 best vertical pellet smoker

We’ve meticulously evaluated numerous vertical pellet smokers for their efficiency, durability, and the quality of flavor they add to your meats. In our quest to recommend only the best, we’ve taken into account factors like temperature control, capacity, and ease of use to ensure your smoking experience is top-notch. Whether you’re a seasoned pitmaster or just starting out, our selection caters to all levels of expertise.

1. Bradley Smoker 4-Rack

If you’re searching for a hassle-free smoking experience with great results, the Bradley Smoker 4-Rack is our go-to recommendation.


  • Generous capacity for large gatherings
  • Set-and-forget operation lasts up to 9 hours
  • Simple cleanup with an interior that’s resilient to rust


  • Smaller than some may anticipate
  • Heat control can be a bit imprecise
  • Wood bisquette feed is not adjustable, which may limit smoke intensity control

We just fired up the Bradley Smoker 4-Rack, and can attest to its ease of use; it’s like having an extra pair of hands in the kitchen. Loading the bisquettes and setting the timer allowed us to focus on our guests instead of constantly monitoring the smoker. The ample space across the four racks easily handled a hearty brisket and several racks of ribs, offering that perfectly smoked consistency we all crave.

After our feast, clean-up was almost as enjoyable as the meal. The stainless steel interior wiped down without any fuss, and the absence of “black rain”—those unsightly drips of dirty smoke, is a real game-changer. Enjoying a BBQ sans the usual mess was both refreshing and appreciated.

What sets this smoker apart is the significant efficiency in smoke production. The double-wall insulation means I can load it once with bisquettes, then sit back, relax, and savor the ambiance of our get-together. Hearing the hum of conversation mixed with the inviting aroma of smoked meats really made our evening.

Overall, the Bradley Smoker 4-Rack stands as a sound choice for anyone serious about smoking, from seasoned pitmasters to weekend BBQ enthusiasts.

2. Pellet Pro Deluxe

If you’re considering a smoker upgrade, the Pellet Pro® 2300 Vertical Pellet Smoker snags top marks for its generous cooking space and consistent temps.


  • Spacious enough to smoke a whole hog with 10 cubic feet of cooking area
  • Precise temperature control with PID Controller maintaining within 5-10° F
  • Sturdy double-walled construction with a bonus free cover and home delivery


  • Initial setup can be quite involved given its size and features
  • Its sheer size might be overkill for those with limited space or who only occasionally smoke
  • The edges on the steel grates could be a bit sharp; handle with care

The first time we fired up the Pellet Pro Deluxe, it was immediately apparent that this beast was built to handle a mountain of meat with ease. You’re not going to be cramped for space with the three vast stainless steel grates, even planning for a crowd is a breeze. The rib rack is a game changer, making sure that every single rib cooks to perfection.

Heat distribution is a thing of beauty in this vertical smoker. Thanks to the convection fan and heavy-duty steel construction, we noticed the temperature stay remarkably steady. There’s nothing like setting your temperature and walking away, confident that the Pellet Pro Deluxe will maintain it within a tight range.

Built like a tank, this smoker’s got a solid presence in the backyard, and the double-walled construction isn’t just for looks. It holds warmth impressively during colder days, which is a definite plus for winter barbecue sessions. Plus, the free cover they include isn’t just a nice touch; it’s essential for protecting your investment against the elements.

We’ve tried various cuts of meat and even threw in a batch of smoked cheese for good measure. Every session leaves us impressed. Yes, there’s a bit of a learning curve when it comes to setting it up and getting started, but trust us, it’s worth the time investment. Just be sure to handle the grates with care, the edges can be a tad sharp.

In conclusion, those who love throwing big barbecue parties or are serious about their smoked meats, you won’t find a reason to regret this purchase—huge capacity, robust build, and precise temperature control make the Pellet Pro Deluxe a worthy centerpiece to your outdoor cooking arsenal.

3. Dyna-Glo Vertical Smoker

Our barbecues have never been better since we started using the Dyna-Glo Vertical Smoker; it combines space and efficiency, making it a top pick.


  • Exceptional flavor enhancement from the vertical design and adjustable flue
  • Ample cooking space with six adjustable grates to fit various food sizes
  • Solid charcoal and ash management system for ease of use


  • Requires monitoring to maintain consistent temperature
  • Some smoke might escape due to potential sealing issues
  • Initial assembly may take time

While trying out the Dyna-Glo Vertical Smoker, we noticed right away the vertical design’s ability to give a beautifully even cook with that desirable smoky flavor. It isn’t just about the flavor, though; the six cooking grates are easily adjusted to accommodate anything from thick slabs of ribs to multiple briskets, making this smoker a versatile beast of a machine.

Managing the fuel and cleaning up afterward is a pain in many smokers, but not in this one. The ash pan in the Dyna-Glo Slides out smoothly, while the charcoal chamber is intelligently designed to maximize burn efficiency, ensuring our efforts are focused on the smoking process, not the cleanup.

However, perfection isn’t quite reached with any smoker, and this Dyna-Glo model is no different. Temperature fluctuations are something we’ve learned to keep an eye on throughout the smoking process. Sealing could be better as we’ve noticed some smoke slipping through small gaps. But once we got the hang of controlling it, the results were consistently delicious.

For anyone starting in the art of smoking or seasoned smokers who appreciate smart design, this Dyna-Glo model might just be your next favorite backyard addition.

4. Pellet Pro Double D Smoker

We recommend the Pellet Pro Double D Smoker for its impressive capacity and consistent temperature control.


  • Large cooking space accommodates multiple racks of ribs and briskets
  • PID controller holds temperature steady for reliable smoking
  • Insulation is effective, even in cold weather


  • Heavy unit at 425 pounds may require multiple people for movement
  • Higher-end price point reflects its commercial-grade features
  • Requires a power outlet, limiting mobility

Our first-hand experience with the Pellet Pro Double D Smoker revealed a true workhorse in the world of vertical pellet smokers. Its expansive interior made smoking large batches of meats a breeze. We found the stainless steel racks not only durable but also large enough to handle whatever we threw at them, from a multitude of ribs to multiple briskets.

The PID controller really shone during long smoking sessions, where maintaining a steady temperature is crucial. We didn’t notice any drastic temperature fluctuations, which often can be the bane of a perfect smoke. This consistent heat delivery allowed us to focus on other aspects of our BBQ without the worry of the smoker dropping or spiking in temperature.

As for dealing with colder climates, the smoker’s insulation performed admirably. We noticed that despite chilly temperatures, the heat was retained efficiently, which meant less pellet consumption and a reliably smoked product. The option to add chunks of wood for that authentic stick burner flavor was a real bonus, offering us the versatility to experiment with flavor profiles.

It’s important to note, however, that this smoker’s heavyweight could pose a challenge. It’s not the kind of appliance you’d want to be moving around alone. Moreover, its professional-level features come at a cost that might not fit all budgets.

Ensure you have a dedicated space for this smoker and plan your budget accordingly. Lastly, being tethered to an AC power source reduced its potential for portability, but given its intended use as a stationary smoker, this wasn’t a significant issue for us.

In conclusion, the Pellet Pro Double D offers incredible value for those looking to take their smoking game to a professional level. Despite its weight and price, the results speak for themselves – a reliable, well-built smoker capable of producing excellent culinary results.

5. Pit Boss Vertical Smoker

We find the Pit Boss Grills 77550 Pellet Smoker to be a remarkable innovation in vertical smoking that’s certainly worth considering for its convenience and consistent results.


  • Spacious cooking area allows for large quantities of food
  • Digital controls offer precise temperature management
  • Strong insulation maintains internal temperatures effectively, even in cold weather


  • Assembly can be time-intensive
  • Possible shipping issues may result in cosmetic damage
  • Heavy pellet consumption might be of concern for some users

The moment we laid our hands on the Pit Boss Vertical Pellet Smoker, we instantly appreciated its generous capacity. With a broad cooking area spread over five racks, we were able to smoke a considerable amount of meat in one go – a game-changer for large gatherings or meal prep for the week. The simplicity of the digital controls was a boon, letting us set and forget the smoker to do its magic.

Using it on a chilly evening, the insulation proved its worth, maintaining a consistent temperature without any noticeable fluctuation. Not once did we fret about the cold affecting our brisket. The rear hopper’s design is clever, neatly tucked away while holding enough pellets for extensive smoking sessions, which meant less fuss for us.

Not everything was as breezy, though. The assembly was indeed a project; patience is key here. A couple of us putting it together meant less time, but solo assemblers should carve out a good chunk of their day. Despite the robust construction, the packaging didn’t always hold up in transit, resulting in some unwelcome albeit only superficial blemishes upon arrival.

Despite minor qualms, such as the amount of pellets used for longer smokes, the smoker’s performance eclipsed these concerns. The flavor it imparted to the food was top-notch – every meat cut came out with that perfect smoke ring and delectable tenderness.

In our experience, this Pit Boss Pellet Smoker is more than just an appliance; it’s the centerpiece for our smoking adventures. Its capacity, ease of use, and consistent results make it a standout choice, and with proper maintenance, we’re confident it could serve us well for years to come.

6. Pit Boss 5-Series

If you’re in the market for a smoker that marries capacity with versatility, the Pit Boss 5-Series is a contender worth considering.


  • Wide temperature range catering to various cooking styles
  • Generous cooking capacity with five adjustable racks
  • Robust stainless steel build enhances durability


  • Instances of shipping damage reported, affecting the smoker’s aesthetics
  • Lack of a built-in timer and Bluetooth capability may be inconvenient for some users
  • Requires additional maintenance like vacuuming the firebox regularly

After spending some time with the Pit Boss 5-Series Vertical Pellet Smoker, we’ve come to appreciate its considerable 1,721 square inches of cooking space. Hosting a barbecue, we were able to smoke multiple racks of ribs, vegetables, and even a full-sized brisket all at once. The ability to roast, bake, and braise in addition to smoking gave us creative freedom with our menu.

The temperature stability of this smoker impressed us the most. During our long smoke sessions, we noticed it held the temperature consistently, which is crucial for perfectly smoked meats. Moreover, the heavy-gauge stainless steel construction not only adds to its longevity but also gives it a sleek, professional appearance despite the heavyweight.

However, after receiving our unit with a few dents—likely due to shipping—it did become clear that while the smoker itself is sturdy, Pit Boss may need to reassess their packaging to safeguard the smoker during transit. Additionally, the smoker’s lack of modern features like Bluetooth connectivity and a built-in timer means you might not find it as convenient as some other high-tech options.

Overall, we found the Pit Boss 5-Series to be a reliable smoking companion. Despite the potential for superficial shipping damage, its performance wasn’t compromised. If you’re looking for a large-capacity smoker that’s built to last and can handle an array of cooking methods, we believe this is a solid choice. Just remember, you might need to invest in a smoke tube and be prepared to maintain it regularly for optimal smoke production.

7. Pit Boss Vertical Smoker

We think the Pit Boss Vertical Smoker is a standout choice for those seeking a balance of capacity and advanced controls in their smoking game.


  • Spacious cooking area with multiple racks arrangements
  • Precise temperature management with a digital controller
  • Extended smoking sessions thanks to a large pellet hopper


  • The control panel is positioned low, which might be inconvenient for some
  • Inner space height can limit size of items being smoked
  • Some units may arrive with shipping damage due to packaging

The moment we fired up the Pit Boss Vertical Smoker, we noticed how the digital control system offered a smooth, user-friendly experience. It’s a treat to have this type of precision at our fingertips, especially when smoking meats that require constant temperature regulation. We were able to maintain our desired heat level within a narrow margin, which contributed to flawlessly smoked ribs.

What struck us next was the smoker’s generous interior. The five cooking racks provided ample space to work with, allowing us to smoke a variety of meats simultaneously. Whether it’s for a large family gathering or just prepping meals for the week, this smoker can handle the load, no sweat. Plus, with the hopper capacity so large, we didn’t have to worry about refueling mid-smoke, ensuring our brisket was tender and full of flavor the next day.

However, it’s worth mentioning, the position of the control panel does require some stooping to make adjustments. And although the smoker is tall, smoking something like a full turkey might require some creative positioning.

While the protective packaging could be improved to prevent potential damages, it’s a minor hiccup in what’s otherwise an excellent smoker. All things considered, this is an easy comrade for any smoking enthusiast looking to take their craft to the next level.

8. Pit Boss Vertical LP Smoker

We think the Pit Boss Vertical LP Smoker might just be the right pick for anyone serious about their smoked meats, providing ample space and steady heat.


  • Spacious cooking area with four racks
  • Easy temperature control and monitoring
  • Hassle-free wood chip reloading


  • Possible quality control issues with shipping
  • Some reports of temperature inconsistencies
  • Heavy unit, challenging for some to move

Having recently given the Pit Boss Vertical LP Smoker a spin, we found it impressive in accommodating large batches of meats with its expansive 720 square inches of cooking space. The dual burner system held temperatures steady – a crucial aspect when smoking for hours.

We noticed the convenience of the external access smoke tray and front grease drawer, making maintenance a breeze. There was no need to fumble around or lose precious smoke and heat from opening the main chamber, a major plus in our books.

Observing the large glass window felt like peeking into a world of flavor where we could watch ribs and brisket transform without releasing any heat. Admittedly, while the unit felt robust, some users might find maneuvering this smoker a little tough due to its weight.

9. Camp Chef XXL Smoker

If you’re looking for generous cooking space in a vertical smoker design, the Camp Chef XXL Smoker delivers, but consider its features and performance carefully.


  • Expansive rack system with variety for smoking different types of foods
  • Smoke Number Control for precise flavor enhancement
  • Simple cleanout system for ash removal


  • Experienced a safety issue with fire through the auger
  • Some may find the substantial weight cumbersome
  • A 2.5-star rating indicates potential reliability concerns

We found that the Camp Chef XXL Smoker’s ample interior, complete with a multitude of racks, accommodates large batches of meat effortlessly, a real party pleaser. The ease of tweaking the smoke levels to suit different recipes using the Smoke Number Control made our smoking sessions a custom culinary adventure.

Moreover, the Easy Ash Cleanout system proved to be a real time-saver, disposing of the pesky ash with little fuss.

However, we must consider some aspects that require attention. During our use, we encountered a significant concern: a fire traveled up the auger to the pellet hopper, which raised safety eyebrows. Additionally, while the smoker itself is sturdy and well-built, its weight might make movement and placement a chore for some.

Last but not least, we can’t overlook the lower user ratings which suggest that your experience could vary.

In sum, the Camp Chef XXL Smoker has the muscle for your large-scale smoking, seamlessly blending capacity with control. But it’s important to be aware of potential safety issues and consider the mixed user experiences. Balance these against the smoker’s strengths to determine if it’s the right addition to your outdoor cooking arsenal.

Buying Guide

When we’re in the market for the best vertical pellet smoker, we need to consider several factors to ensure we make a wise investment. Let’s go through the key considerations.

Capacity & Size

We must assess our needs based on the amount of food we usually smoke. A larger smoker is ideal for big gatherings, while a smaller one may suffice for personal use.

  • Cooking Area: We should look for a smoker with ample racks and space to accommodate our cooking needs.
  • Physical Size: We must ensure the smoker fits in our designated space.

Temperature Control & Range

Precise temperature control is crucial for successful smoking.

  • Temperature Range: A wider range offers more cooking versatility.
  • Thermostat Quality: Look for a smoker with a reliable thermostat to maintain consistent temperatures.

Build Quality & Durability

Our smoker should withstand the elements and repeated use.

  • Materials: Stainless steel or similarly durable materials are preferable.
  • Seals: Quality seals keep the smoke in and improve efficiency.

Ease of Use

Ease of use ensures a smooth smoking experience.

  • Pellet Feeding System: An automatic feeder saves time and effort.
  • Cleaning: Removable components simplify cleaning.

Features & Technology

Innovative features can enhance our smoking experience.

  • Connectivity: Bluetooth or Wi-Fi may offer remote monitoring capabilities.
  • Additional Features: Consider items like meat probes, ash cleanout systems, and pellet purge systems.

Remember, finding the best vertical pellet smoker depends on our specific needs and the features that we value most. We must carefully weigh these aspects to select the model that best fits our lifestyle and smoking preferences.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before we dive into the common queries, it’s important to note that the best vertical pellet smoker for you will depend on the specific features you value, how various brands perform compared to competitors, and the scale of smoking you intend to undertake.

What features should I look for when choosing a vertical pellet smoker?

When selecting a vertical pellet smoker, we recommend considering temperature control precision, hopper size for pellet storage, overall build quality, and available cooking space. Ease of cleaning and additional features such as WiFi connectivity may also influence your decision.

How do Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smokers compare to other top brands?

Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smokers stand out due to their robust build and wide temperature ranges. They also often include features such as programmable meat probes which are comparable to top brands, offering a competitive edge in terms of usability and precision.

For competitive use, we suggest smokers that offer exceptional temperature stability and control. Models like the Pit Boss Series have a reputation for such performance, with high-quality construction and advanced features that cater to the rigor of competitive smoking.

Can a Camp Chef XXL vertical pellet smoker meet the needs of large-scale smoking?

The Camp Chef XXL vertical pellet smoker is designed for large-scale smoking, offering ample cooking space, dual meat temperature probes, and convenient ash cleanout systems. Its capacity and reliability make it well suited for handling significant smoking tasks.

What are the advantages of using a vertical smoker versus a horizontal smoker?

Vertical smokers provide a smaller footprint for spaces where area is a premium. They typically offer better heat distribution and are more efficient with pellet usage. The design also allows for easier access to multiple racks of food without having to reach over a hot grill.