Many brands produce smokers, which might get you confused. So this Weber Smokey mountain 18 vs. 22 comparisons will let you know which of the two to choose.
There are not many differences between these two smokers as the same company makes them. However, you need to look closer to get an idea of how they differ.
The features of these smokers are great for both cooking in slow and low temperatures while also conserving fuel. With this, you will be making the best-smoked meat recipes.
Aside from the apparent difference in size, we will also talk about the features and how well they can cook the recipe you want. That way, you will see which is better at cooking what.
Compared to most smokers, these models from Weber are great for parties or occasions that require cooking many foods to serve. This makes them great for making large portions of food.
The features are quite hard to understand and know about if you do not look close. So here, we will be explaining each feature and how well they can help you cook your best recipes.
Setting Up The Smokers
These smokers from Weber require minimal assembly. Once they arrive at your house, they are ready to cook in less than 30 minutes; once done setting they up properly.
I suggest using or setting them up in your backyard with a lot of space around them. You can also put them on your patio so you can cook with them even if it is raining hard outside.
The only assembly that you will need to do is with the smokers’ legs, brackets, and lid handles. These can be installed easily and will not take more than 15 minutes of setup.
There are diagrams and other types of guides, such as wordy instructions for smokers. You can follow them to know how to properly install the parts of the two smokers.
Sometimes, some guides or diagrams are pretty much generalized. Since there are other sizes of the same models, the company usually just places the same guide on a smoker.
Thankfully, there are specific guides on their websites for each model. You can see the different parts you need to install on each smoker, making it easier to follow and understand.
This made the set up a little confusing, but setting up these smokers is pretty easy once you get the hang of it. You will be able to start cooking right away with no hassles or heavy lifting.
While there are not many differences between these two smokers, you will see them by looking closely at the features. That is what we did and compared the two smokers.
We will first go with the more obvious differences and then explain the features to you so you know where you can use them. Read on as we start with comparing the smokers properly.
When it comes to the difference between the size of these two smokers, it is not necessarily about the height or other outer measurements. The specified number is about the cooking area.
So basically, the Weber Smokey Mountain 18 has 18 inches of cooking grate while the 22 has, well, 22 inches. This might seem simple, but the difference is quite impactful in cooking.
With the 18-inch cooking grate, you have a total of 481 square inches of cooking space. This is spread on two different levels, so you can smoke different types of meat simultaneously.
While it does not seem too large at first look, this model can cook two whole chickens or turkeys simultaneously. It can make enough food for up to 10 people in just one cooking.
The 22-inch model has the same concept of spreading the total cooking area on two different grates. There is a total of 726 square inches for you to cook different recipes at the same time.
With this large cooking space, you will be able to cook up to 8 steaks at a time or a whole pork shoulder. This smoker is enough to cater to up to 12 to 15 people during small parties.
Both cooking grates of each smoker are chrome-plated stainless steel. This is a durable material that can take the weight of whole chickens or other heavier foods cooked.
The material used in making the cooking grates is also easy to clean. Food can stick to it, but you hardly need to make efforts to clean them, and the food is removed pretty quickly.
Build And Material
There is not much to compare when it comes to the material used in making these smokers. They are both made with powder-coated stainless steel, which is perfect for outdoor cooking.
The powder-coated finish on these smokers makes them durable despite the different weather outdoors. They will not easily corrode or rust despite rains and sunlight constantly hitting them.
The design is also pretty much the same as the concept of a standing smoker. This means the fire comes from the bottom and lets the smoke go up, and cook the food on the two grates.
The only noticeable difference between the two smokers when it comes to design in the lid. The lid is pretty much the same as the dome shape, but the 22-inch model has an extra handle.
This allows you to deal with a larger, heavier lid. You can safely open and close the lid without risking getting your hands clamped in between the lid and the hot body of the smoker.
Cooking In The Smokers
This is where you will truly get to see the difference between the Weber Smokey Mountain smokers. However, there is not much to see as they are both great at cooking any recipe.
I did not expect that these smokers have too many differences when it comes to cooking with them. They both use the same technique to cook the food that you place in the cooking grate.
I can easily control the temperature with the vents on the smokers. The cooking grate’s capacity and the fuel burner or the firebox is where you see the difference.
The 22-inch model is more practical when you want to cook large portions of food. It can cook faster as you do not need to wait for one portion to finish cooking; just put as much as you can.
The firebox of these smokers is great as it can help in conserving fuel. There is a vent at the bottom of the firebox, and it is where you can control the temperature while you are cooking.
There is also another damper on the smoker’s lid, which functions the same as the bottom damper. While you are cooking, you also get to see the temperature with a built-in thermometer.
The 22-inch model also naturally has a large water pan which helps in controlling the temperature. This makes it better for keeping the food you are cooking moist and tender.
Cleaning The Smokers
The benefit of having these two larger models of smokers from Weber is that you get to have the ash catcher. This is not available in the 14-inch model because it is too small for it.
This means that you can easily clean the ashes from the firebox of the smokers. You do not need to go deep under the smoker just to get to the firebox and clean it out.
Just open the damper at the bottom and grab the ash catcher to discard the ashes. The cooking grates are the ones that you should concentrate on when it comes to cleaning the smokers.
They are pretty easy to clean, but they can start to rust if you leave them unattended. You need to wash them every after use to ensure there are not burnt food residuals in them.
Washing them with warm water and brushing the food residuals would be enough. There is no need to wash them with soap, but you can also use some and rinse them thoroughly.
Leaving the thin layer of grease on the cooking grates will help them block moisture not to rust quickly. Just palace the smoker in your storage area when done cleaning them.
There is not much to compare between these two impressive smokers from Weber. So if you are trying to choose between them, it will depend on which lifestyle you have.
The 18-inch smoker is perfect for slightly fewer people to serve. So if you occasionally invite other people to your house to eat, it is the better choice.
The 22-inch model is perfect for someone who loves to cook large portions of food, or you have other people over to eat. It is a great smoker for cooking food for many people.
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