Elevate Your Grilling with Smoke Cans

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Savory Spice Shop

Tags: BBQ Grilling Smoke Cans

I can whip up coleslaw, baked beans, and barbecue sauce like nobody’s business. But when it comes to barbecued proteins, I’m a relative newcomer. Which is why our summer of exploring the barbecue tips and tricks Savory founder Mike Johnston brought back from his Chasing BBQ road trip has been a welcome education.

I might not be an expert pitmaster yet, but I’ve learned that the most authentic barbecue involves smoking proteins (chicken, brisket, pork shoulder, spare ribs…just to name a few) low and slow over your wood of choice. This requires the proper equipment—either a smoker you purchase or a smoking pit you build. Neither option works on the deck of my city condo. So I was thrilled when we started carrying Smoke Cans, small tins filled with wood pellets that can be used on a gas or charcoal grill. They’re easy to use and produce smoke for about an hour—perfect for infusing smoky flavor into everyday grilled fare like shrimp, chicken, and burgers. It’s a great way to explore the smoke flavor of barbecue without committing to the time or equipment that proper smoking requires.

Using Smoke Cans

What’s great about Smoke Cans is that using them doesn’t require any special preparation—no soaking of wood chips, no smoker box, and no professional smoking equipment needed. You simply peel off the Smoke Can labels and set the tin on hot coals or over the hottest part of a gas grill and the tin will start smoking in minutes. (It’s amazing how much smoke spews out of the little hole at the top of tin!) Add your protein or veggies, cover the grill, and let the smoking begin.

Check out our detailed Smoke Can Instructions.

Smoke Cans are best for quicker-cooking grilled fare like pork chops, pork tenderloin, beer-can chicken, chicken pieces, fish & shrimp, veggies, tofu, skewers & kabobs, or burgers. Smoke Cans are not meant for all-day smoking projects like brisket—you can graduate to that when you upgrade to a smoker or pit.

Smoke Can Flavor Pairings

Our Smoke Cans come in three flavors—Alder Orange Peel, Hickory Lemon Basil, and Mesquite Coffee Bean. Because we like playing with our food (it’s what we do!) we’ve had fun matching Smoke Can flavors with different proteins or veggies and pairing them with various Savory seasonings. After some serious experimenting, here are a few flavor pairing suggestions.

Alder Orange Peel

The bright, sweet smoke flavor of alder and orange is ideal for lighter fare like salmon, shrimp, poultry, or squash. We suggest pairing it with a seasoning or rub heavy in citrus or citrus and peppers.

Pair with these seasonings:

·      Barrier Reef Caribbean Style Seasoning

·      Cherry Creek Seafood Seasoning

·      Bajan Seasoning

Hickory Lemon Basil

The strong, tangy smoke flavor imparted by the combination of hickory and lemon basil complements rich meats, like pork or ribs, and hearty root vegetables. Kick up the flavor even more with a smoky seasoning or a rub that includes lemon.

Pair with these seasonings:

·      Pyramid Peak Lemon Pepper

·      California Citrus Rub

·      Long’s Peak Pork Chop Spice

Mesquite Coffee Bean

The rich, smoky flavor of mesquite and coffee is perfect for “meaty” protein or veggies like steaks, burgers, and mushrooms. While rubs with coffee are a pretty obvious choice, these flavors are perfect for classic salt & pepper based rubs too.

Pair with these seasonings:

For a city-dwelling novice (like me), Smoke Cans are a low-commitment and high-flavor introduction to the concept of smoking. Even if you’re a diehard pitmaster (the opposite of me) with smoking projects lined up every weekend, Smoke Cans can still be useful for quick weeknight grill meals when you don’t have time to fire up the smoker.

Let us know if you come up with a killer Smoke Can grilled recipe!


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