Gas grills are great outdoor cooking appliances because of their exciting features, like precise temperature control, ease of use, and a wide temperature range.
However, they also have a notable disadvantage, which is the lack of natural smoky flavors in the foods that you cook over this grill. But you can still add some smokey flavors by using wood pellets on your gas grill.
Now you must be curious about how to use wood pellets on a gas grill to achieve desired results. Don’t worry, as I am here to help you out.
You can easily use wood pellets on a gas grill and infuse your desired smoky flavors in the meal of your choice by placing pellets inside a smoke tube or smoker box. After that set it over the grill grates or heat deflector to allow pellets to burn and generate smoke for your food.
You can also get help from the aluminum foil pouch method by creating a foil packet with small holes on the top or dual fuel technique for which you’ll need to put pellets inside a skillet and place it over the gas burner.
Using Wood Pellets On A Gas Grill – 4 Valuable Methods
Wood pellets and gas are two different fuel sources widely used in outdoor grills, and combining them can be tricky but isn’t something that is unachievable.
So, let me move forward and begin this guide regarding properly using your wood pellets on a gas or propane grill to gain the ideal results.
1. Smoke Tube
When it comes to cold smoking or enhancing the smoke flavors in your meat, regardless of whether you use a gas grill, wood pellet grill, or charcoal grill, a smoking tube shines as a handy tool that can help you achieve this goal.
There are also many BBQ lovers who use smoke tubes in their pellet grills as well to elevate the smoke profile of their dishes.
It is a small cylindrical-shaped device with multiple holes where you can place a good amount of wood pellets and burn them. As a result, the pellets start smoldering, which then produces smoke.
The smoke tubes are available in different sizes, and on average, they measure around 12 inches, and smoking pellets inside them can last for 5 to 6 hours, depending on their quality and how quickly they burn.
Here’s a step-by-step instruction on how to use a smoke tube on a gas grill.
- Firstly, get your smoke tube and fill as many pellets inside it as you possibly can. Also, if you prefer more smoke, you can use two smoke tubes at once.
- Secondly, stand the smoke tube in a vertical shape and start igniting the pellets directly using a heat gun. Within 2 to 3 minutes, the wood pellets should catch fire, start smoldering and produce smoke. Now is the time to set up the tube inside the grill.
- Well, you can place it over the grill grates, but I recommend putting it above the heat deflector and below the grates. This positioning allows for better smoke circulation, and the direct heat from the burner ensures a constant smoldering process.
- Lastly, set up the grill grates back to their position, place your meat on them and start grilling it, and an intense amount of smoke will penetrate deep inside your meat.
So, this is how you can easily use wood pellets on a grill and get the vibes of a traditional smoker.
2. Smoker Box
The purpose of a smoke tube and a smoker box is the same, which is to add smoky flavors to your food, whether using a gas grill, propane grill, or wood pellet grill.
Also, their usage is pretty similar. However, they are different from each other in terms of shape and size.
So basically, a smoker box is a square-shaped tool that is specifically designed to hold not only wood pellets but wood chips as well.
This box usually consists of durable stainless steel material with multiple small holes on its surface that allow the smoke to escape.
Using this tool, you can conveniently turn your grill into a smoker that offers you a good amount of delightful smoke flavors.
Below is the instruction regarding how to use a smoker box in your gas grill.
- You can place this tool on the grates, but I suggest placing it below the grates from where it can receive high and direct heat, which results in consistent smoldering and better smoke production.
- So, begin the process by placing wood chips or wood pellets inside the box. If you prefer wood chips, you can soak them before sending them into the box. When done, close the box.
- Remove one grate from your grill a little and set the box below it right above the heat deflector from where the heat comes in.
- Remember that you don’t need to ignite the pellet or wood chips before placing the box like a smoking tube because it will automatically start igniting the pellet and allows them to smolder as soon as you turn on your grill’s burner.
- When you see the pellets producing smoke, place your desired food items on the grill grates, close the lid, and your food will be cooked and penetrated with delicious smoky flavors.
So, these are the steps you need to follow for using a smoker box inside a gas grill, and the good thing about this box is that it can hold more pellets or wood chips at once than a smoking tube.
So, choose between the tube and box wisely and per your requirements.
3. Foil Pouch Method
If you currently have no access to a smoker box or smoke tube, the aluminum foil pouch method can work for you in that scenario because it isn’t any tool but just a technique.
To imply this method, you will only need a few things that I believe you will already have. You need to arrange an aluminum foil and your favorite pellets.
It can be a great technique when you are smoking a thick and large cut of meat like a brisket because you can place plenty of pellets at once.
Here are the steps you need to follow to use pellets in your grill using foil paper.
- Cut a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil and ensure it is large enough to hold the desired amount of wood pellets.
- Next, create a foil packet by folding the foil tightly and sealing the packet completely. You must leave a small opening or make a few small holes on the top of the package, allowing the smoke to escape and penetrate your meat.
- Now add your wood pellets inside the foil packet.
- Preheat your grill to your desired cooking temperature and place the foil pouch the same way you did in the previous two methods. If the grates of your grill are not moveable, you can place the packet over the grates.
- Once the grill is preheated and the packet is in position, place your food items on the grill grates and close the lid. As a result, the pellets inside the foil packets will start to smolder and produce smoke, infusing the food with smoky flavors.
- Lastly, keep checking the internal temperature of the meat or food you are cooking and cook them to perfection with a decent amount of unique smoke flavors.
4. Dual Fuel Method
This method of using pellets on a grill is not as popular as the previous ones, but it can also help in achieving a good amount of smoke.
It does not require extra accessories and will just need the pellets you prefer and a regular cast-iron skillet that can withstand high heat. It would be more beneficial if you could arrange a smoker box because it is easy to use.
So, allow me to disclose the steps you need to follow for the dual fuel method of using wood pellets on a grill.
- Start by preheating your grill to the desired cooking temperature. If you have a smoker box, fill it with your preferred pellets, and if you don’t have one, use a cast-iron skillet and simply place the pellets directly in it.
- Place the skillet filled with pellets directly over one of the burners on your grill, providing direct high heat.
- Give the pellets a few minutes to ignite, and they will start producing smoke. Once the pellets have begun to smolder and produce smoke, adjust the burner flame to maintain a steady temperature for cooking.
- Next, set your food on the grill grates, ensuring that it is away from the direct heat source, as it will create an indirect heat setup on your gas grill, which is perfect for smoking.
- Lastly, close the grill’s lid to trap the smoke inside. When you’ve cooked your food, it will indeed be penetrated with a decent amount of smoke flavor.
Benefits Of Using Pellets On A Gas Grill
The gas grills can’t infuse your meats with smoke flavors that are often desired in outdoor cooking by BBQ enthusiasts.
However, by using pellets on your grills, you can have your hands on rich and unique smoky flavors and some other benefits too.
- Smoke Flavors: First of all, wood pellets are a common heat source that can provide a smoke flavor when burned. As you’ve just discovered that you can use wood pellets on a gas grill, you can also achieve an authentic wood-fired taste and smoke in your foods.
- Several Pellet Flavors: In case you don’t know, pellets are available in many flavors, including hickory, mesquite, cherry, and applewood pellets. This allows you to experiment with different tastes and flavors for your grilled and smoked dishes.
- Easy Cleaning: No doubt, a charcoal grill can offer you more smoke flavors than using pellets on a gas grill, but charcoal also creates more mess, whereas it is easy to clean the mess (generated by pellets) from the smoker box, smoke tube, and foil pouch.
Using pellets on a gas grill might seem to be a tricky task, but it isn’t, and it allows BBQ enthusiasts to infuse meats with their desired smoky flavors because there is a large variety of pellet flavors available.
Also, I have shed light on four of the most valuable and famous methods regarding using wood pellets on a gas grill to get the ideal results.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you make a smoker in a gas grill?
Yes, with the addition of some tools along with quick and easy tricks, you can turn your gas grill into a smoker. For example, one method is to use a smoker box or smoke tube and cook your food by adjusting the indirect heat settings inside your grill.
Can you use wood chips instead of pellets on a gas grill?
Yes, you can easily use wood chips on a gas grill instead of wood pellets. For that, you simply need to soak the wood chips first, place them in a smoker box, smoke tube, or foil pouch, and position them on the grill grates to infuse smoke into your food.
Caspian James, the Founder and Chief Editor at FaveGrills, is passionate about sharing his knowledge and expertise on the latest Smokers and Grilling Products along with mouth-watering barbecue recipes. He constantly researches new gear with a sharp eye for detail, providing the FaveGrills community with in-depth reviews.