Anyone who’s ever worked the barbeque for a while knows how irresistible smoke-infused meat tastes and understands the importance of having a good smoker.
Reverse flow offset smokers, in particular, are a considerable step up from your traditional smoker in the sense that there’s far more control over the amount of smoke that runs over your food and the actual temperature of the smoker.
Reverse flow offset smokers use a baffle plate, a piece within the cooking chamber, to reduce the amount of smoke that runs over your food, separating the firebox and smoking compartment so that you never end up overdoing it.
Like any cooking unit, you want a product with high quality and preferably an affordable price range, but searching may be a daunting challenge with all the options available.
Fortunately, we’ve done the work for you, comparing many reverse flow offset smokers side by side to bring you our top picks.
Plus, we’ve stapled a short FAQ section for your convenience and chosen the reverse flow smokers we think will benefit you most, so we can assure you this post is well worth the read.
Best Flow Smokers
1. Oklahoma Joe’s Longhorn Reverse Flow Smoker
Our first product up for review is one of two reverse offset flow smokers from Oklahoma Joe’s, a brand with the craftsmanship that puts care into providing the reverse flow smoker under 1000 dollars for those looking for quality and affordability alike.
This smoker comes with all the stops, including heavy-duty construction, multiple baffles and dampers for optimal heat control, and customizability. With all the easy-to-use features, this smoker is a fantastic pick for anyone who wants a smoker that demonstrates more than just the basics.
Customers are delighted with the sturdiness of this smoker’s construction and the consistency of the temperature. According to the buyers, the smoker looks amazing, performs professionally, and is easy to modify to their heart’s content.
Some buyers claim the baffles are hard to clean and that the paint peels off the firebox over time. Otherwise, the smoker works like a charm.
For an affordable smoker with quality performance and fantastic reverse flow functionality, Oklahoma Joe’s has got your back. You’ll be getting a durable, customizable, and excellently performing product, so there’s little reason to wait on this purchase.
- The main chamber provides 751 square inches of cooking space while the firebox chamber provides an additional 309 square inches
- Uses four baffles to guide heat and smoke into the main chamber for even heating and smoking
- Multiple heat dampers aid in the ease of heat control
- Construction includes a heavy-gauge all-steel body, porcelain-coated cooking grates, and a stainless steel fuel basket
- Has an optional smokestack location and can be modified and customized
- Other bonus features include cool-to-the-touch handles, a bottom shelf for utensils and additional fuel, and wagon-style wheels for easy transport
- The temperature stays even and consistent on both sides of the smoker
- Easy to customize and modify for further enhancement of smoking performance
- Heavy-duty construction adds excellent security when using
- Paint peels on the firebox when the temperature gets too high
- Baffles are a challenge to clean
2. Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker
For a slightly smaller and more affordable smoker, Oklahoma Joe’s offers the Highland, an efficient and straightforward reverse-flow smoker among top-rated offset smokers.
Like the previous model, you get all the same desirable customizability, heat control, and sturdy construction, just with a tad bit less space but an affordable price tag to make up for it.
Buyers are pleased with the excellent construction of this smoker, agree that assembly is straightforward, and concede that the temperature stays where you need it.
Customers attest to the baffles working excellently and enjoy the thickness of their construction. Buyers do warn, however, that without installing additional sealants and latches, heat and smoke may end up leaking out of the unit in various places.
This product might be your best bet if you’re looking for a cheap offset smoker that still gives you a quality performance that lasts.
With fantastic heating, adequate spaciousness, and easily removable and customizable features, you’ll have yourself a smoker that pleases a crowd and doesn’t hurt your wallet.
- The main chamber offers 619 square inches of cooking area while the firebox chamber provides an additional 381 square inches
- Four baffles and multiple heat dampers work together to produce fantastic heat and smoke control
- Constructed with heavy-gauge all-steel, porcelain-coated cooking grates, and a stainless steel fuel basket
- The ashtray is easily removable for quick cleanup
- Optional smokestack locations for modification and customizability
- Thick baffles retain heat excellently
- Firebox holds up relatively well
- Incredibly simple to assemble and modify
- Heat and smoke may leak without the proper sealant and latching, which you may need to install yourself.
3. Lang BBQ Smokers 36″ Original Patio Smoker
For competition-worthy smoking, Lang BBQ Smokers brings us this quality offset smoker with user-friendly features, perfect heat guidance, and construction to last you a lifetime.
With expert craftsmanship that considers your needs, you’ll be hooking yourself up with a smoker that you can use, whether you’re competing or merely trying to impress a crowd.
Consumers agree that this smoker is a quality unit made for competitive cooking and easy to use from setup to shutdown. According to buyers, the smoker gives their food a quality taste and puts off a pleasing aroma that attracts others.
If you have the money to spare and want nothing less than the best, this 36″-inch patio smoker is for a person like you.
From an award-winning brand, you’re getting a smoker that won’t only give you the quality of taste and smell, but the quality cooking experience that makes the process of smoking meat enjoyable to undertake.
- Six cubic feet (approx. 475 square inches) of cooking space holds 60-72 pounds of food or about 6-8 racks of ribs side by side
- Strong all-welded 1/4″ rolled steel body maintains cooking temperature excellently
- Includes a slide-out top shelf, removable bottom storage rack, fixed wrap-around prep area, and 3/8″ handles
- 1/4″ plate drip and grease pan come together for satisfying grease management
- Expanded flat metal grates and square tubing frame prevent warping
- The heat baffle design works with the firebox for optimal smoke control and clean heat
- Heavy-duty wheels and tires let you roll the smoker where you need it to be, making it ideal for competition setup
- Puts off an outstanding smell that draws a crowd
- Heat design controls smoke and heat to give your food the perfect taste
- Top-of-the-line construction makes this smoker last a lifetime
- Not the most suitable for beginners who are looking for their first smoker – this unit appears in many competitions, after all
- Offers a smaller amount of space than the previous smokers, which may limit how much you can cook
4. Meadow Creek TS70P Barbecue Smoker
Our last reverse flow smoker is a professional offset smoker that comes from Meadow Creek and offers exceptional quality and features for the price.
Construction that lasts you for decades, massive space, secure latches, and an expert baffle system make this a smoker you can use competitively.
At the same time, other helpful features enable backyard chefs to give this smoker a spin just the same. From the handles and the thermometer to the cooking grates and the paint finish, everything about this large offset smoker screams quality.
Consumers are impressed with the quality of the material this smoker provides and are delighted with how easy it is to clean after use.
Customers recommend heating the tank before you cook to get the smoke going and buying the charcoal grill pan to enhance your cooking.
Other buyers wish that this unit let them use propane to start their fires but otherwise agree that this smoker is a beautiful product both to look at and to use.
This smoker lands in a moderate price range and delivers ultimate excellence to ensure that you get every penny’s worth.
Whether you use the smoker for competitions and utilize the reverse flow system to its fullest or cook for guests in the backyard and show off the impressive design, this is a smoker sure to please you and anyone who can’t wait to try your cooking.
- You get 978 square inches of total cooking space provided by T304 stainless steel rust-free food-grade cooking grates
- Positive-lock latches on all doors keep your heat locked in and your smoking process secure
- Handles stay cool to the touch on the slide vents and firebox door for worry-free handling
- You’re able to calibrate the stainless steel thermometer exactly how you need it
- A built-in water pan helps keep your meat moist with the liquid of your choosing
- Constructed with a heavy 3/16″ plate steel tank and 1/4″ plate steel firebox
- Baffles on the firebox keep excessive heat from the tires while the overall reverse flow system provides excellent smoke and heat control
- Heavy-duty construction lasts you for decades
- Stainless steel grates are a cinch to clean
- The heat stays consistent thanks to the reverse flow system and secure latching
- May need to employ techniques to get an easier start-up, such as preheating and buying additional add-ons.
Factors to Consider
Like any smoker, you want to consider how many you’re feeding. If you’re smoking food for yourself, a smaller smoker is ideal, but if you prepare for crowds or are in charge of the holiday meals, a bigger unit is most likely the better option for you.
A smoker is nothing if it doesn’t hold up well over time, so you’ll always want to look into the construction of the smoker you’ve got your eye on and make sure to get your hands on a heavy-duty smoker.
Heavy-gauge steel or cast iron, for example, holds up incredibly well, and keeping your eye out for stainless steel features means dealing with minimal rust.
Pay attention to the material of the grates as well – stainless steel, iron, or ceramic, it all makes a difference – because those will be the parts you’ll need to worry about most when cleaning up.
Many smokers are stick burners, which means their primary fuel type is wood, both for the fuel and the flavor. It takes a bit of effort to get these wood fires going, so if you know you aren’t the type to spend time figuring that out, you might want to look for gas-powered or electric smokers instead.
We do suggest taking the time to get the hang of a stick burner, however, because using natural wood provides smoke and flavor like no other.
Since most smokers need to shut down while smoking their food, you’ll want to make sure you have a way to monitor the temperature.
You could invest in a thermometer separately, of course, but there are smokers with temperature gauges built into them, so keep your eyes open for those features.
The last thing you’ll want is for the smoke and heat to leak out of your smoker. Some smokers come with latches that lock while others have secure lids that do the job. If you can find a smoker that promises secure latching, do so.
What is Reverse Flow?A reverse flow smoker is a smoker that uses an additional metal plate called a baffle to protect your meat from intense direct heat. The baffle forces heat and smoke to first flow under and then over the meat. By the time the smoke goes up the chimney, it's flowing in the opposite direction as a regular smoker. This method protects your meat closest to the firebox from overcooking, which is why it's such a desirable technique.
What Makes Reverse Flow Smokers Better?Aside from protecting your meat from burning, a high-end offset smoker will:
- Double as a greased pan and watertight pan
- Distribute smoke much more evenly for better flavor
- Significantly reduce the number of temperature spikes you'll experience
- Return quicker to temperature than a regular smoker after you open the main chamber door
- Provide cleaner heat that permeates your meat more thoroughly
What Are the Primary Downsides?Because of the nature of a reverse flow smoker reducing smoke and heat, it will take longer for you to get up to your desired temperature, and you'll need to use more fuel than you're probably used to for maintaining that temperature. Also, you should note that while you are reducing heat and smoke, you don't necessarily have control over it, so don't get too frustrated when you end up wanting more smoke than your horizontal smoker is putting out. Despite these cons, however, a reverse flow smoker has much more significant benefits and will improve your smoking process.
Making the Decision
After learning everything you need to learn about reverse flow smokers, we hope you can see why we’ve concluded that the best backyard offset smoker is surely the Meadow Creek TS70P Barbecue Smoker.
With its heavy-duty construction, expert reverse flow system, and helpful features like cool-touch handles and a calibratable thermometer, you get hassle-free smoking worthy of competition.
We know not everyone needs an ultra-high-end smoker with a big price tag, though, so if you want a simpler product with a better budget, we’d recommend the Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker.
The smoker gives you superb heat control and customizable capabilities all at an affordable price.
When it comes to smoking meats, you want a machine that’s going to give you the power and quality you need to produce the perfect flavor every time.
A reverse flow offset smoker is the machine to get that job done, so if one of these smokers on this list catches your attention, don’t hesitate to add it to your cart so you can get smoking.