Can you imagine cooking indoors if your oven did not have a thermometer? Then why do you try to cook outdoors without a good oven thermometer (and your grill or smoker are really just ovens)? If you hope to be king of the grill, you've got to know what the oven temp really is. And this may come as a shock, but your indoor oven is probably waaaay off too. It probably needs adjusting, so when you buy a good digital you can calibrate and adjust your indoor oven. So if you buy a good oven/grill/smoker thermometer, you can improve your indoor cooking too. These devices all have a probe that can be placed in the oven next to the food. It is on a cable and attached to a meter you can read outside the cooking chamber and it will tell you what temp the food is feeling.
Cons: One potentially large weaknessof the ThermaQ, however, is that, unlike the Flame Boss and the Tappecue, you cannot control pit temperature remotely. This may not matter to you, but it may seem pointless to others to be able to monitor the pit but not control it; what good does it do if you’re away from home? Another feature we’d like to see would be some kind of cloud storage or any other way back up your cooking info, logs and temperature graphs; you must keep the ThermaQ app open your phone, and export the log, or lose it.
If you like to cook lots of meat simultaneously, the Fireboard may be your best option; it works with up to 6 different temperature probes, which can be used as either meat probes or ambient probes for the pit itself. The included probes are RTD PT-100 probes - which are known for their accuracy; Fireboard rates them to within ±0.7°F, close enough to ensure perfection everytime. Temperature range is -94 to 752ºF.
Of all the different smoker designs available, pellet smokers are the easiest to use, because they're thermostatically controlled, like your kitchen stove. You just select a cooking temperature, and a controller maintains it by feeding wood pellets to a fire pot as needed to maintain your set temp. Set it and forget it. You can throw a brisket in a pellet smoker, set it for 225°F (105°C), go to bed, and sleep like a baby, knowing you'll wake up to delicious smoked meat.
PID Controller – one of the best controllers. Precisely maintains the temperature you set at intervals of +/- 5 degrees. Perfect when it comes to long and slow meat smoking at low temperatures. You can leave such a pellet grill for the entire day without worries and forget about it. When coming back after many hours, you’re sure that your meat has been cooked at the fixed temperature that you set.
The Daniel Boone WiFi Model comes with a digital WiFi controller (control and monitor through our iOS or Android mobile application), a meat probe, a peaked lid for stand-up chicken/large fowl/rib racks, a convenience tray with utensil hooks, hard rubber tires, and a venturi-style firebox for cyclone combustion. It also has Sense-Mate, a thermal sensor which constantly monitors the ambient temperature. When the weather gets cold, the sensor kicks the grill into Turbo mode, so you don’t have to wait long for the grill to heat up! Other features include a positive pressure hopper fan to prevent burn-back, “fan only” mode with automatic shut-off to blow ash out of the firebox after you finish grilling, a 27×16 (Approx 432 sq. in.) cooking surface, and 13.5” clearance inside. It weighs 155 pounds.
The Daniel Boone model is also offered (for an additional cost) with a digital WiFi controller, which allows you to control the grill from your smartphone, including changing the grill temperature, monitoring the food temperature, setting a timer, and creating food profiles. Other available options for this grill include a stainless steel no-warp lid, form-fitted grill cover, and a dome thermometer.
Wattage – With the right amount of wattage by your side, you will easily reach the temperature required, and it will stay there provided that you are providing enough pellets for it to make use of. Anything north of 1200W will easily be able to cover all your requirements, but as a rule, it’s ideal to be sheltered than sorry, so it can’t hurt to purchase a unit with a bigger Wattage than you might suspect you’ll require.
The Elite's digital control panel is a sophisticated touch-pad PID controller that holds set temps with more accuracy than most kitchen ovens. It's simple to operate and offers an integrated meat probe and some useful programming options. For example, you can set it to cook your brisket up to 200°F (93°C) and then drop to a lower cooking temp to keep it warm without overcooking.
The features that matter: Of all that’s included, you should care about the WiFi, meat probe, and stainless steel grates. While some reviews claim the WiFi is unreliable, Green Mountain is ahead of the game in offering it and has developed a nice app with good functionality. A welcome inclusion, the integrated meat probe makes it easy to cook food to the right temperature without lifting the lid. Easy to maintain and durable, the stainless steel grates are a great addition.
I have a new GMG Daniel Boone and the hopper won’t stop because the sensor is reading very low although I KNOW the temperature is very much higher than it reads. We have the 1 piece grease tray, with the half moon on one end and circle on the other end. Customer service said that the half moon should be on the chimney side and circle side should be on sensor. Should it be literally “sitting” on top of sensor or just pushed up right onto it?